We all know that blog and Facebook posts that contain compelling images get more attention than others and most people know there are severe implications of using an image someone else owns. But downloading images from a Google search is so easy, ” and who would know if you used it anyway”. Recovering your Facebook Page from Facebook or having your website shut-down for a violation is not something that should be taken lightly.
Here are some great ways to get free or low-cost images:
Pixabay has over 1.8 million high-quality stock images and videos shared by its talented community. Pixabay is a vibrant community of creatives, sharing copyright-free images and videos. All contents are released under the Pixabay License, which makes them safe to use without asking for permission or giving credit to the artist – even for commercial purposes. There are some restrictions, but they are minor.
Pexels is also one of my favorites. This site makes it easier to scroll through the images. Sometimes you will find the same images on Pexels that you do on Pixabay but I don’t mind. Photographers often list their photos on these free sites hoping to get some money from people who are generous enough to give them a donation or follow them. I have donated to many. The Pexels license reads almost verbatim of Pixabay.
Pikwizard provides high-quality, free stock photos. They have a library of over 1 million stock images and videos. They are royalty-free and safe for commercial use, with no attribution required. They also have a Design Wizard that will let you modify your photo, add text, and even modify your videos.
Creative Commons Images and Music
Creative Commons is a nonprofit organization that enables the sharing and use of creativity and knowledge through free legal tools. You can find free images, clip art, and even music for your videos. Creative Commons allows people to define what their license covers. Watch for the following symbols here to tell you what you can use the work for.
Google Publicly Reusable Images
You can use Google’s Advanced Image Search to filter your image search by “licensed for public reuse.” When you perform an image search on Google just
- Click on the gear icon in the upper right corner
- Select Advanced Search
- Under the Narrow, your Results box at the bottom under usage rights select “free to use or share”.
Stock Photo Sites
There are lots of royalty-free photo sites out there. Many of them have professional looking images that are very inexpensive. Sometimes paying a little something for the ease of finding exactly what you’re looking for is the way to go. Our favorite is 123rf.com. You can set-up many lightboxes and audition images before purchasing (usually for less than $1 each).
- Yay Images
- Media Bakery
Take your own free images
You can always take your own photographs. This can be time-consuming, but if you are a creative person it can also be rewarding. It makes you look at the world a little differently.
Like always, have fun with it and let us know if you have other suggestions.