My 5 Fav Copyright-Free Image Sites! (All Free! $$)

I am asked this question every, single week. 

"Where did you find that image?" 

I need awesome images for my client work all the time. (Social media graphics, Facebook ads, Blog posts...) And I'm often asked: 1) where to get images, or 2) where I found an image I used. 

And my answers tend to be the same.

I have a few favorite sites that I visit all the time. And I love these sites for 2 reasons:

  1. The images are simply gorgeous
  2. And the artists have made them free to use.

I think we all probably know by now that your biz can land in hot water if you don't use copyright-free images. But just in case...

You'll want to be sure to use public domain or copyright-free images on your blogs and products. These are images that are free for public use, usually because of their age (public domain) or because the author has licensed them under Creative Commons Zero (copyright-free). 

It's always important to do your homework to be sure you're using images that are safe.

All of the sites I've listed in this post are free for commercial use. But, just in case, I’ve linked to the license agreements below, so you can check them out for yourself before using any of their work.

So, here are a few of my fav sites for grabbing awesome images: 

1) Unsplash

Good for: Nature, Abstract

This was one of the first sites I found when I really started digging for quality, cost-effective image sites. They were only a few months old when I found them. When I started sharing the link with other freelancers, several of them told me to stop sharing it so word wouldn't get out. ;) The images here are absolutely gorgeous and it’s my go-to place for nature scenes. They recently implemented a search function, which helps a lot.

Plus, once you create something with the art from Unsplash, you can submit it:

License infoCommercial use is OK. Don't resell as is. Don't need permission. No attribution required, although appreciated. 

2) Gratisography

Good for: Humor, One-of-a-kind

Gratisography is a really unique site. Ryan is the photographer here and he offers his work up for free with no linking back necessary. (Although it’s always nice to give credit where it’s due!) His work is super unique and a lot of his images have a hint of humor in them. 

License infoCommercial use is OK. Don't resell as is. Don't need permission. No attribution required, although appreciated. Don't redistribute them on free, stock photo websites. Can't use for 'pornographic, criminal, defamatory or degrading purposes.' 

3) PicJumbo

Great for: City scenes, Value (in the paid option)

PicJumbo is an interesting case. Certain images are available for free on the blog, but you can upgrade to the subscription model for a great value. For $6/month, you get that current month’s pack, plus access to all other packs that have been offered in the past. Huge value! Plus, the city-scene packs tend to be of European cities so they have a pretty unique aesthetic for an American audience. They’re absolutely lovely. 

License info: Commercial use is OK. Don't resell as is. Don't need permission. No attribution required, although appreciated. 

4) Snapwire Snaps

Great for: Nature scenes, People

Snapwire Snaps comes from Snapwire, a site that allows you to sell your iPhone pics to brands looking for new images. The Snaps blog puts out 7 photos each week. The images are mostly nature scenes (which are totally gorgeous), but they do offer quite a few images of food and people, as well.  

License info: Commercial use is OK. Don't need permission. No attribution required.

5) StockSnap

Great for: Search Function, One-stop-shop

I’m in a love affair with Stocksnap. Their search function is unlike any other image site I’ve found. They have created a library of images, sourced from all the other royalty-free sites out there. So you can be sure when you pull a picture from their library that you’re allowed to use it. 

License info: Commercial use is OK. Don't resell as is. Don't need permission. No attribution required.



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