A picture is worth a thousand words!!! But it also needs an investment. Do you operate a website or blog and looking to download free stock photos or royalty free images for commercial use? Why to waste your time on searching for such websites and to understand their commercial image usage copyright when you can find all free stock photography websites at single place?
We noticed that visitors to blogs and websites are curios to look at the images / visuals content more as compare to text content. If the images are in high resolution and attractive enough then your content will definitely grab more attention of readers. Not only images in articles help to maintain a good level of readers but they also tempt visitors to get more engaged by sharing blog on social media or doing comments on the content. But as a blogger or website owner you must be sure that the images you are using on your web content is free of copyright issues and is available under free license usage, or else you may face copyright claims by the original image owner.
There are plenty of categories or topics on which bloggers can write content including health, food, science, technology, lifestyle and many more. Finding right image for blog is obviously very hard and expensive. So here we make an attempt to compile a list of online stock photos websites from where you can download free stock photos and royalty free images that can be used by anyone for promoting their online content. (Subject to respective image copyright terms)
Pixabay hosts a collection of royalty free images those can be used in professional projects, especially for researchers. It is a great repository for accessing public domain images. You can search free images based on orientation, a unique feature of this website. Pixabay images have recently been tagged under Creative Commons Deed CC0. and one need to follow the image license terms clearly specified under respective image. You can download free images for multiple categories including Business, Education, Health, Science, Technology etc at Pixabay. With over 670K free stock images, illustration and vectors, Pixabay is the best platform to find & download royalty free images online.
Pexels has secured 2nd spot in our list due to the quality of pictures they offers. Currently there are over 30K free stock photographs available for personal or commercial use and 3000 high resolutions photographs are being added every month. If they keep offering such a great photographs, you may soon see this free stock photograph website on first spot in our article. According to their license, you can use all photos on Pexels for free for any personal and commercial purpose.
Morguefile has a collection of royalty free images over 300000 in count. One unique feature of this site is that it lets users resize/crop the images that are being downloaded for usage. Search for images can be done via keywords and there’s no need for user registration. In some cases user might need to contact the original up-loader for usage. Downloaded images if are of personal nature, should not be used in adult websites or any similar purpose. Morguefile is a Creative Common license friendly website making comic book artists, teachers a great fan of this site.
Death to stock photo is one of the fastest growing website provides FREE non-stock photos as well as offering various membership depending upon your requirement. In FREE subscription, they email you 20 new photographs every month. If you are looking to download more photographs at FREE of cost, death to the stock photo is not a recommended option for you. For unlimited downloads, you will have to buy their paid subscription which starts at $12 per month if you buy yearly subscription.
StockVault is the best source to download free stock images comes with CC license to use for non commercial purpose. It also offers paid images with specific license and can be used for commercial purpose. To make your search easier, StockVault offer various image search filter and advance search option. It is noted that close to 55000 images are available in Stockvault website, tagged under Creative Commons License terms. It also helps with photo editing resources for users who would like to add more creativity to the downloaded images.
Flickr is world’s #1 platform for photographers has over 8 billions photos from over 87 millions users (2013 data) and 3.5 millions images uploaded daily. Here users are allowed to control the license of images they upload and public can accordingly use images for their blog or website.
Flickr images are tagged with Creative Commons license which means images downloaded from this site can be used in any forms but under particular creative commons license. Also no forms of derivatives are allowed as it would be considered as violation of Creative Commons license agreement with Flickr. It also lets users search with CC license terms and offers further search drill down based on usage licenses. Bloggers often use this platform to download images and use on their blog with the credit of owner of image.
StockSnap.io is yet another website hosts Free stock images (CC0) tagged with Creative Commons license terms. Getting the right images from StockSnap was a tedious task earlier but now they have improved the design and search option is very user friendly. As a user one can download very high resolution images from StockSnap.io with CC0 license. You can find images from all different categories like technology, business, health, nature, travel etc.
The best part of StockSnap.Io is; they are having trending image section where they are listing stock photos based on its popularity. You just need to visit this section and download the image you liked the most.
If you are after quality images then UnSplash is for you. Atleast 10 photos are being uploaded to this site every day. The site also offers website plugins for quick image retrieval to blogs and websites. Every image included the name of the photographer. Creative Commons Zero license tagged photos can be attributed , derivated from UnSplash without any permission. Unsplash photos are useful artistic presentations, classroom projects and other similar creative initiatives.
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SplitShire platform is a collection of amazing breathtaking stock photos shot by Daniel Nanescu. He provides all his personal shots for absolutely free to other users. The platform already reached 80000 download marks and that’s amazing as per the Daniel. SplitShire claims that the platform provides free high quality photos with no restrictions at all.
Uniqueness is what defines GratisoGraphy site. Most of the images on this site are professional takes, and unique in nature. But one issue with the site is that there’s no search feature incorporated as users have to scroll on for finding their preferred image. This site also comes under Creative Commons Zero license tag whereby one can download and use images in forms they want. Give special attention to terms while using photos as embedded images.
With well over thousands of views a month 500Px is the leading site for free images. Images falls under licensed , zero licensed categories. Special edition images are copyrighted under Creative Commons license agreements and should be used as per owners terms. All violations will be legally challenged.500Px has some awesome and attractive images which can helps you to increase the readers on your blog.
Unrestricted Stock is another popular website from where you can download free stock photos, vectors and videos. I personally liked this website to use vector images for websites / blog.
If you are using Unrestricted Stock to download stock images, checkout their user agreement too.
#13 Google Image Search
Google image by far has been the easiest choice to find all different types of images with the advance search option. What is notable with Google Images lets you search based on Copyright terms be it copyrighted for free usage, display images without any copyright issues and many other search combinations. You can get direct links to websites that are placeholders for images or get direct links to the exact image.
All photo sharing websites are a collective effort from photographers worldwide. Undoubtedly they are amazing resources of quick access for images for any occasion. It is worth to research well before moving to a photo sharing website, to suit your needs as a writer and to find the apt images for your content. Sometimes it can be difficult to find the perfect match but the resources are growing in plenty and you can download free image that meets your requirement.
Before you download and use any FREE stock image, one should be wise enough to understand the licenses using the image and would be good to contact the owner in case of any confusion. Here we doesn’t take any responsibility on free or royalty free images downloaded by users and should be used under one’s own risk. The image usage policy of the particular website may get change periodically, we strongly recommend reviewing policy before you download and use free or royalty free or stock images from any of these websites.
If you know about any reliable resources to download free images online, do share with us. We will manually review the website and will add into the list.