Whether you are building a blog, a website, or just building content for social media, chances are that you are in need of great photos.
Fortunately, there are tons of websites now that offer amazing stock photography, and you DO NOT have to spend an arm and a leg.
As a few notes:
- When using any photos, you MUST check the details in the copyright.
- Make sure you can use the photo for “commercial” use (that is really anything you would use it for in a business that makes money).
- See if the photo requires “attribution.” This simply means that you must credit the copyright holder or photographer wherever you use the photo.
- Do NOT just search Google for an image and slap it onto your blog or site. You must find the copyright holder and see if you can use the image. If you use a photo that has copyright restrictions, you can end up paying a hefty fine.
Here are some of my favorite FREE stock photo sites.
This one probably offers the most stunningly beautiful photos on my free list. They offer photography collections of about anything you can think of. This site really proves that free photos do not have to “look” free (if you know what I’m saying…) You can find truly great photos here.
And their permissions are really simple to understand and clearly stated. You can copy, modify, distribute and use the photos for free, including commercial purposes, without asking permission or providing attribution.
This site has become a “go-to” for many people. You can easily search and find great images here. When you click on an image, double check the licensing to make sure you can use the photo in the way you want. The licensing is clearly started on the photo page.
You can download anything for free, however, if you want to download really high res images, they require you to create a log in. Creating an account doesn’t cost you anything, and as of now there’s no downside to it. So go ahead and log in and get the free images you need.
#3. Free Range Stock
This is another big site full of good stock photos. Their whole purpose is to provide great stock photos for commercial or non-commercial use, for FREE. (I like the sound of that!)
You do have to create a login to download photos, but it’s free to do. Great site of quality images.
#4. Morgue File
This is another collection of free images to use. However, my experience is that you have to do more digging to find the great stuff. It’s there, but there are also a lot of lower quality images mixed in. But – I included it on my list because I have found great stuff there!
This is an especially great site if you need something like, a photo of a celebrity, for example. Photos like that can be tricky to find for free (that you can actually use). But here, in true Wiki style, you can find images for free that have been contributed to the site.
As always, make sure you double check licensing to see if you need to include attribution.
This is a HUGE collection of photos, illustrations and vector art. All of the photos are free to use, but you may need to include attribution, so double check the licensing.
There are some truly beautiful photos here, so be sure to take a look!
Finally, Google has some options for helping you search for free images to use! Follow these steps.
- Type in what you are searching for.
- Click on “Images”
- Click on “Tools”
- Select “Usage Rights”
- Select “Labeled for Reuse with Modification” (this gives you the most freedom)
- After you find the image you like, make sure you click through to the original site and check the licensing, to see if the photo needs attribution.
#8. Take your own photos.
Last, but certainly not least – take your own photos! Investing in a good camera and some online training can be a great way to improve you photography skills very quickly.
This is pretty vital if you are selling and marketing your specific product. Obviously, you would want to be putting up images of YOUR cake, YOUR crafts, YOUR product. Work on some basic photography skills, and you won’t have to worry about copyright!
Spend a little time looking at these various options and find a couple of sites that you love. Using photos on your blog or website does NOT have to be expensive. It’s possible to create a beautiful site full of content for free.