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Are you looking for free, high-quality images to include with your content?
Visual content is an integral component of any website page or blog post.
Instead of relying on beautiful images that offer a direct correlation to the written content for the visitor, far too many authors and designers rely on people in suits sitting in meetings or shaking hands.
This approach does not give your website a unique voice.
Not only are many of these images tacky, but they can also cost a lot of money if you purchase licenses for each one that you’re using.
There is a better approach to use.
When you have access to free stock images for commercial use, then you can create a custom page or post that speaks directly to your visitors.
You will get to take advantage of the creativity that photographers and graphic designers post online every day.
New websites with stunning stock images are going live on the Internet every day.
Many of them allow you to use their content without charge.
If you are ready to improve the look of your website, then this guide to the sources of free photos will help you to locate and use the visual content needed to take your work to the next level.
What Are Free Stock Images?
Blog posts, landing pages, and all other forms of content receive double the traffic when you include corresponding images with each post.
For many, the problem is finding a free image to use with their content.
It is essential to remember that royalty-free stock photography is not the same as an item that’s 100% free.
If you use a royalty-free item, it means you do not need to pay any ongoing royalties to use the image within your content.
You might have to pay an upfront fee for a license to use the image, provide specific forms of accreditation, or follow other stipulations to use the picture.
Public domain images can be used in commercial projects and attribution is not needed for them, but if you have the information of the artist, giving credit where it is due gives your content an extra level of class.
The outgoing link also provides the artist with some link equity.
Rules to Follow with Free Stock Images
Some rules still apply to these free image websites that must be followed, even if you do not pay for the rights to the image up front.
Take personality rights into account.
Sometimes this is referred to as Model rights or Property rights. What it means is that if a person can be clearly identified in an image that you intend to use commercially, you will need a signed release.
There are several different licenses.
Some free photos have permission for use on a personal website. Others are allowed for commercial purposes. You must comply with the terms of the creator’s stipulations to use the image, even when it is royalty-free.
Image creators can add specific licensing terms that apply individually. If it’s possible it’s always best to check the profile page of the image creator to ensure that there are no specific terms outside of the standard license language that you must meet to stay in compliance.
Remember that copyrights automatically apply.
All images receive copyright protection from their moment of creation. Using an image without the permission of the creator violates the copyright of the picture. Changing an image or using it beyond the scope of the authorized license are actions that are considered copyright violations and can result in fines and penalties.
On many of these free stock photo sites, you will find specific information regarding the licensing structure of the image. As long as you comply with the license (and not use the image commercially without the model or property release), then you are generally safe to use it.
Avoid using an outdated image.
If you use stock images that are of poor quality or are not aging well, then these attributes will reduce the impact of your content. Search for photos that reflect your personality and brand to help create more interest in your page or post.
Download the correct size.
Although it makes sense to download a free stock image in the highest possible resolution, you must take into consideration how you’ll be using the photo on your site. You may need to adjust the size or quality to fit your needs.
Correct any errors with your images immediately.
You may receive a message about your use of a free stock image on your site. If you are accidentally infringing on the author’s rights or didn’t attribute it correctly, then that individual has the right to ask you to make changes to your use of their photo.
Attribution is an essential element of use in the world of shared images. It is easier to make the requested change instead of dealing with a DMCA takedown notice.
Key Points to Remember when Using Free Stock Images
When you review the attribution, licensing, or ownership details of a free stock image you want to use, it is essential to consider the source information before posting the photograph.
Authors sometimes update their image requirements.
The information provided here is as accurate as possible, but it is up to you to verify the accuracy of the content you post.
I cannot be held responsible for an inaccurate attribution that gets taken from this site instead of from the original source of the free stock image.
The current and future content of any links or websites included with this post is the responsibility of their creators, which means I am not responsible for any liability or damages that arise from your interaction with that content or from information relayed on this post.
If your preferred websites are not listed here, please feel free to let me know in the comments section, and I will consider including them in this post after review.
If you want to create any type of online graphic for social media, blogs, ads etc. try out Snappa.
One of the most popular websites where you will find copyright-free images published under Creative Commons Zero (close to 2 million royalty free stock photos). You can use them even for commercial purposes. FAQ
Image by James Pritchett
High-resolution photos, all licensed under Creative Commons Zero, which means you can do whatever you want with them.
All photos on this site are licensed under the Creative Commons Zero license, which means you can copy, modify and ditribute them even for commercial purposes.
On this site you will find a lot of Creative Commons images. Thanks to PhotoPin adding images to your article is very easy – you just need to copy an HTML code and paste it in your blog post. FAQ
Image courtesy of marcolm at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Royalty free stock photos. If you want to use an image for free you must publish an acknowledgement to FreeDigitalPhotos.net and the image creator on the same page where the image has been used. However if for some reasons you do not want to publish an acknowledgement then you must pay for the image.
This is a site created by a group of photographers and graphic artists. You will find there more than 100,000 free stock photos. If you want to upload or download images you must be a member. Membership is free! FAQ
Image by Ryan Mcguire
Free images that you can use for personal or commercial projects. All pictures are under Creative Commons Zero. License
On this site you will find around 27,000 images. They are either in the Public Domain or Creative Commons licensed, which means you can use them freely and for commercial purposes, but you must attribute the author. FAQ
All images on this site may be used for personal or commercial purposes without any restrictions or limitations. Attribution is not required, but is always appreciated. Terms and Conditions
Image by Ed Gregory
Free photos for personal and commercial use, all under Creative Commons Zero license. Attribution is appreciated, but not necessary. Frequently Asked Questions
Free images in different categories that you can use any way you wish (commercial use allowed). All photos are licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 so attribution to LibreShot.com is required.
Image by froggidonna
Free high resolution images for personal or commercial use. Attribution is not required, but is appreciated. morgueFile license
Image by Flash Alexander
High-quality, high-resolution images that you can use for free even commercially. While a credit is always appreciated, it is not required. FAQ
You can download all the pictures for free and use them for personal or commercial purposes. The photo gallery on bigfoto.com is big and constantly growing. Registration is not required. In return for free download bigfoto.com asks you to place a link to the bigfoto website on your own website. Copyright
#15. Little Visuals
Free pictures licensed under Creative Commons Zero, which means you can use them anyway you want.
On a free account, there are about 100,000 free images, but when you subscribe to Canva for Work, you will have exclusive access to over 300,000 more free premium elements. Whether you are using free or paid elements, you do not need to give Canva credit or attribution when you publish your design. If you do though, it would be much appreciated. You are free to use your designs on blogs and other platforms. You may use your Canva designs for commercial blogs. To know more about using free elements on Canva, please click here.
Image by Ales Krivec
Some images on this website are in the Public Domain and some require an attribution. You can search by category such as: nature, people, animals, food etc.
Stock photo sharing website with free images for personal and non-commercial usage. All the photographs and images on this website are submitted by photographers and artists from all over the world.
High-resolution photos that you can use free of charge for both personal and commercial purposes. However an attribution to www.free-pictures-photos.com is required.
Vintage images that you can use for free even for commercial purposes. In order to download the images you need to create an account. Attribution is not required, but a photo credit is appreciated. Model and property releases are not available. Licensing and FAQ.
Every month they will send you beautiful photos to your inbox, you just need to sign up. The images can be used even for commercial purposes. Plain English License
Photo sharing platform where contributors offer their images for free under Creative Commons License. You have to give credit to the photographer by using the code available on the website. License terms and conditions vary from image to image.
Image by Tom Eversley
High-resolution images free to use both in commercial and personal creative projects. Attribution is not required but is appreciated. Terms and Conditions.
Stock photos by Jeffrey Betts. All of them are licensed under Creative Commons Zero. You can use them for both personal and commercial purposes.
Images of antique prints and maps for non-commercial use. A link back to the website, such as: “Image courtesy of ancestryimages.com” is appreciated. If you want to use some of the images for commercial purposes, please contact the author of the site.
Huge collection of free, Public Domain images. You can use them for commercial purposes without asking for permission. You can search images by category such as: Food and Drink, Space, People, Travel, Nature etc.
Image by Jan Vasek
Free Public Domain images. 7 new photos are published once a week.
Image by Folkert Gorter
Images for private and commercial purposes available under the conditions of a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license.
Photo by Staffage
Image by Jeshu John
Hi-resolution photos for your personal and commercial use. Attribution is not required, but is highly appreciated. FAQ and Terms.
Images for personal and commercial use. Attribution is required. Terms of Service.
Image by Daria
Free hi-resolution photos for your landing pages and graphic designs. Attribution is not required. All photos are licensed under Creative Commons Zero.
Image by Viktor Hanacek
Free photos for personal and commercial works. Attribution is greatly appreciated. You can search images by category: food, nature, people, roads and more. FAQ and Terms.
On this website you will find high-resolution royalty free stock images. You can use them under their RF-LL terms. There are about 10,000 images in the free section. They ask you to add linked credit line to author/agency (you will find it on the download page).
Image by John Price
Free high-resolution images for personal and commercial use. All of them are donated to the Public Domain. New photographs are added weekly.
Do you have a wine blog? If you do, then you should like these images. The website doesn’t exist any longer, but you can download all the images onto your computer.
Image by Go Wild Images
Splashbase aggregates free (Public Domain) high-resolution photos from different sources.
Light Rays Trees
Free high quality images by Daniel Nanescu with no copyright restrictions for personal and commercial use. Attribution is not required, but appreciated.
Free images by Joao Pacheco. All of them are available under CC0.
Free images for both personal and commercial use. Attribution to the creator is required. You can search images by category, such as: business, technology, food & drinks, nature and more.
Millions of free Creative Commons images from many online sources. You can search for images by keywords and then use the embed code to insert them into your blog post. You can choose the License Type from the navigation menu. Terms of Service.
High quality and high resolution photos that you can use for free anywhere you want. You don’t have to credit the author or this site, but it is always welcomed. A new photo is published daily. About Page
Image by Dave Meier
Image by Tim Mossholder
Image by Ken Kistler
Free Public Domain images that you can search by category such as animals, flowers, food, landscape, people and more.
Free photos. No attribution required. You can download four collections of stock photos: 80 assorted photos, 75 more assorted photos, 160 business-themed photos, 250 holiday-themed photos.
Free image bank for commercial and editorial use. You will find here images with three different types of license: Basic, Creative Commons 2.0 and Public Domain.
Designed by Freepik
Free vectors, PSD files, icons and photos. You can use them for free both in personal and commercial projects, but you must insert the attribution. If you don’t want to credit the author you can acquire a license. Frequently Asked Questions
It is a license-specific photo search engine. You can search millions of freely licensed photos from many sources. Before using the chosen image check the license. FAQ
Summer umbrella from alegriphotos.com
Free images under a Creative Commons license. Some photos are exclusively offered under a Public Domain license. You can use them for most of the commercial and personal purposes. A link to alegriphotos.com is required. Image Usage License
Image by sasint
All pictures on this site are licensed under the Creative Commons Public Domain License. You can search images by different category such as: abstract, food, travel, family and more.
Most of the photos from this website are free to use for both personal and commercial purposes under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. FAQ
On this website you will find 4 collections of free, high-resolution photos.
The name says it all. You will find here over 100,000 completely free stock photos that you can use in your personal or commercial projects. Registration is required.
You will find here high quality paid and free images under Creative Commons licenses. Attribution is required.
Image by Jim
You can use these images in your personal and commercial projects. There is no requirement to give credit. Frequently Asked Questions
A collection of Public Domain images. Frequently Asked Questions
High-resolution travel photos. All of them are listed under the Creative Commons Zero license, so you can do whatever you want with them.
Sunset over Mount Magazine
You will find here thousands of unique and free Public Domain stock photos. All of them are released under the Public Domain license, which means you can use them for both personal and commercial purposes. Public Domain License Terms.
Free food pictures in high resolution. You can use them anywhere you want both in your personal and commercial projects, they are also free to edit. Attribution is not required, but as always much appreciated. License
Great resource with Public Domain images. You will find here thousands of files that you can use for free.
On this website you will find a few thousand Public Domain images (flower images, holiday images, bird images, people images etc.) from old books, magazines and other print materials. They are copyright free in the US and many other countries. More Info
Yosemite Valley Antiqued
Free photos that you can use for personal, commercial, non-profit, artistic, or creative purposes. Most of them were taken by David Niblack. A link back to the site is not required, but it is welcomed. About Imagebase
Image by Jeri Johnson
Public Domain images. Seven free photos are released every week – you can get them straight to your inbox.
Travel photos released under a Creative Commons license. You can use them for free as long as you follow the licensing guidelines. To learn more click here.
Public Domain “startup focused” images. Attribution is not necessary, but a link back to the website is welcomed.
This site helps you search through Flickr images. Thanks to it you can quickly find Creative Commons license photos for your personal or commercial projects. Always double check the license before use.
Public Domain images by Jonas Nilsson Lee.
Clouds in the Sky
High quality Christian stock photography. Creatice Commons Zero license.
Free stock images for any use including commercial. A link back/credit is not required, but would be appreciated. Frequently Asked Questions
Nature stock photos released under the Creative Commons Zero license, so you can do whatever you want with them. One new photo is added every day.
Thousands of free photos about travel and nature. You can use them for private or commercial purposes. Attribution is required. Check FAQ
You will find here free images for personal or commercial projects for yourself or a client. Attribution is not required. You need to sign in first.
Travel and nature images by Aaron Logan. All photos are released under the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 United States license.
Hundreds of high-resolution free (Public Domain) stock photos. New images are added on a daily basis.
Free stock photos and vectors. License Agreement.
#95. Free iMage Bank
Free high-resolution images for personal and commercial use. Categories include: city, food, lifestyle, nature, animals, people and more. Terms & Conditions
Free Public Domain images. The gallery is not big, but maybe you will find something useful. New photos are added weekly.
Free high-resolution images of mountains, forests, rivers, roads, flowers, horses, butterflies and more. You can use them both in your personal and commercial projects. Attribution to http://freebigpictures.com is required.
Cloudy Mountain Crest
Public Domain image source. You will find here free images donated by different photographers. FAQ
Beautiful Flowers on the Hill
Free, high-resolution images in different categories: animals, flowers, landscapes and more. Commercial use allowed and attribution is not required.
Different patterns that you can use for both your personal and commercial purposes. Attribution is not required.
2000 free (Public Domain) stock images from 10 categories: activities, animals, cities, food, landscapes, objects, people, plants, transportation and bonus photos.
Image by freeaussiestock – stockarch.com
High-resolution creative commons stock photos that can be used both in personal and commercial projects. Attribution is required.
Funny Picture Quotes
Free quote images released under CC BY 3.0 US. You will find here, among others, Funny Picture Quotes, Inspirational Picture Quotes and Picture Quotes about Life.
Image by jimmyfortune
Vector images released under a Creative Commons Zero license. You can use them for personal or commercial purposes. A link back is welcomed although not required.
Image by US Fish & Wildlife Service
Over 15,000 images availabe under various licenses. Double check the license before use – you will find it on every image download page. FAQ
Spring in mountains early spring scenic by Hillebrand Steve, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service
Public Domain images in different categories: animals, plants, sport, people, objects, travel and more. Although a link back is not required, it is always appreciated. Frequently Asked Questions
Over 18,000 free stock photos released under an attribution license, so a link back is required (Linking Information). You can use them in your personal and commercial projects. New images are added to the site on a regular basis. FAQ
Free stock photos released under CC0. 20 new images are added every Monday. You can search photos by category such as: work, architecture, abstract, landscapes and more.
High quality images for personal or educational use. If you want to use them commercially you need to request permission. Attribution and registration are required. Image usage.
Beautiful calm serene lake
Thousands of free Public Domain pictures in various categories taken by different photographers and submitted to the above website. Attribution is not required, but definitely appreciated.
Another website which quickly lets you find free images on Flickr.
Image by Jonas De Ro
Many free textures that you can download and use in your personal or commercial projects. Attribution is not required, but always appreciated. You must create an account if you want to download the textures. Check the FAQ section.
Free high-resolution images released under Creative Commons that you can use anywhere. Attribution to Fotorama.no is required.
Free (Public Domain) high-resolution stock photos taken by Igor Ovsyannykov. Attribution is welcomed, but not required.
Sioux Indian Tribe: Sioux Village
Image by Larisa Koshkina via Publicdomainfiles
Free images in different categories (nature, people, sport, food and more) that you can use for both your personal and commercial projects. Attribution is not needed, but highly appreciated.
Public Domain images for both your personal and commercial use.
Public Domain images of historical figures such as: Dante Alighieri, Ludwig van Beethoven, Napoleon Bonaparte, Joan of Arc, Immanuel Kant and more.
Raspberries and Blackcurrants
Christmas Candle and Ornaments
Free festive stock photos – released under a Creative Commons Attribution License – that you can use anywhere online.
Photo by: Matthew Henry
Some photos on burst.shopify.com are released under Creative Commons Zero license and some photos are licensed. To learn more about the licenses, check Burst terms of service (#4 Using Photos). Although you don’t need to provide attribution to the photographer it’s always best to do it whenever possible.
Photo by: Wes Powers
On this website you will find over 150,000 free images released under Creative Commons CC0 (public domain). You may download, modify, distribute and use them royalty-free for anything you like, even for commercial purposes.
Photo on Visualhunt
This is the information you will find on the website: High quality free photos in one place. We hunt for best free images from many online sources and pull them all together in one spot. Most of our photos are CC0 license (do whatever you want). Additionally we offer all Creative Commons and Public Domain photos from sources like Flickr and make it possible to embed them directly from our website.
Images of Sicily, Spain, Costa Rica, America, Vietnam & Greece. Attribution is not required. Free for commercial and personal use.
Small stock photo site with free public domain images in different categories. Attribution is not required, but appreciated. Commercial use allowed.
Paid sites with stock images that you can use if you’re not satisfied with the free ones:
Great tool for creating online graphics
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