We’ve compiled a list of 11 places that you can find FREE photos without copyright restrictions
(article updated 1/15/21)
If you are blogging and posting on your website and social media sites, you probably know by now the importance of great imagery. Using the perfect image can take a post from lame to fame very quickly. It can also help tell a story that words alone can’t.
Finding the right images can take hours and even days, and chances are you’ll need to use work created and owned by someone else. There are plenty of sources, but understanding their use laws is a different story. Stock photo services, creative commons licenses and public domain repositories of images are not subject to fair use due to the rights they carry.
Stock photo services require you to pay for a license, creative commons licenses confer the right to use an image under certain circumstances and public domain images are not subject to copyright in the first place.
Fair use is not the same as free use. Fair use is a legal exception to the exclusive rights an owner has for his or her copyrighted work.
When it comes to photos, the general rule is that you can’t use a copyrighted work without express authorization from the owner. When in doubt, assume it’s subject to copyright and don’t use it without the appropriate permission.
What it comes down to is that if you need to use another person’s image, make sure it fits clearly into one of the protected purposes. There are many resources for free images, whether public domain, licensed creative commons or inexpensive stock images, so you really shouldn’t need to use copyright-protected works. Use this information to make good decisions and you’re likely to be just fine. Just remember though, if in doubt leave it out.
11 Places to Find Free Photos and You Don’t Have To Worry About Copyright Restrictions
1 . Pikwizard.com
Pikwizard.com holds a stunning library of over 1 million stock images and videos. You can take each image and edit on graphic design tool, Design Wizard. And the images of people are great! There’s no attribution required.
Hundreds of high-resolution photos are added to StockSnap.io on a regular basis. Per Stocksnap.io, all their images are released under Creative Common Zero and can be copied, modified and distributed, including images that will be used commercially. No attribution is required. They curate photos from around the web, but also have their own network of talented photographic artists.
Unsplash.com adds 10 new high-resolution photos every 10 days and all images are licensed under Creative Commons Zero.
Unrestrictedstock.com offers royalty-free images, videos, and vectors at no cost. As stated on their website, you can do pretty much anything with their online collections. Their license agreement only has a few restrictions, which should be checked out before using their images.
Travel Coffee Book is a great place to go if you are looking for scenery and iconic images from around the world. It’s also a perfect venue if you want to submit your own travel photos.
You can sign up for their email list and get images delivered to your inbox on the first of each month. The images are available under a Photographer End User License which basically allows you to use the photos for your own use, but you are not allowed to distribute them.
The New York Public Library has Digital Collections with over 180,000 items, which are in the public domain. They are now available as high-resolution downloads. According to the New York Public Library, no permission is required and there are no restrictions on usage.
8 . freeimages.com
Freeimages.com hosts more than 387,000 free photos and illustrations. Be sure to read the Content License Agreement and view specific restrictions for each image, which can be seen on the preview screen. You may need to let the photographer know you are using the image and in some cases, you will need to give him or her credit.
jaymantri.com provides amazing images, for free, that can be used under Creative Commons Zero.
Free stock photos and images that can be used for commercial purposes. These are photos by Daniel Nanescu that have no copyright restrictions.
Life of Pix offers a beautiful collection of high-resolution images. All can be used for commercial or personal use and do not have copyright restrictions. If you need videos, they have a great website for that too lifeofvids.com.
Hopefully you find this list helpful. We will continue to provide you with interesting and valuable information and free resources on a regular basis. Sign up to receive our monthly newsletter with links to our latest news.