Are you browsing for breathtaking images to spice up your website? Here are the best places on the web to get fantastic stock photography and pictures – absolutely free to use for your website.
Using professional images can make your website stand out, but finding good stock photos for free can be time-consuming and costly. Businesses use stock images for various purposes ranging from advertising, print, blogs, graphics, websites, and much more. I’ve put together some great resources where you can find professional images for free.
Please note that it’s essential to use images that you have the right including editing and republishing. Using someone else’s photo without proper permission may incur legal action and hefty charges from the image owners. If you’re looking for some professional images to add to your site or for any commercial purposes, ensure you have checked your sources and got any necessary permissions.
All of the resources I’ve included in this blog post provide photos and imagery under the CCZ or CC0 (Creative Commons Zero license) or similar. CCZ / CC0 is something that you should look out for when selecting images; it means that you can use such images for personal/commercial purposes and modify them as per your requirements. Additionally, you may need to add a reference (image credit) to the photographer or the site you found it on so that users can check the details on their site.
This one is my favorite for the last 5 years or so. Pexels is one of the most user-friendly sites for stock images. It combines and shares images from other sites that are free to use and with over 1+M royalty-free photos to search through there is plenty of choices! You can browse anything from stunning close-ups to grand cityscapes and enjoy 70 new high-resolution photos every week that are hand-picked from free image sources! They also provide free & amazing stock HD videos which is another great reason to browse through their website. As of today, Pexels claims to be maintaining a library that contains over 3.2 million photos and videos, growing each month by roughly 200,000 files. The content is uploaded by the users and reviewed manually.
Freepik is a search engine that helps users find high-quality photos, vector images, illustrations, and PSD files for their creative projects.
Unsplash is an entirely free stock image library, powered by a community of photographers across the world. It was born out of the pain of trying to find high-quality and usable imagery in a pinch. And when they realized that they weren’t alone working on this issue, a community of 50,000 generous contributors helped Unsplash to grow and create a resource library of over 1 million images and still counting.
Burst is a free stock photo platform that is powered by Shopify. Their image library includes thousands of high-resolution, royalty-free images that were shot by our global community of photographers. I like their collection of Fashion & Food related photos.
Flickr is an American image hosting and video hosting service, as well as an online community. It was created by Ludicorp in 2004 and is a popular way for amateur and professional photographers to host high-resolution photos. Flickr has changed ownership several times and is being currently owned by SmugMug since April 20, 2018. In early May 2019, SmugMug announced Flickr having 100+ million accounts and billions of photos and videos – while it migrated all the data from its former owner Yahoo’s servers to Amazon Web Services (AWS) in a planned 12-hour transition.
Flickr categorizes its content based upon various license types namely: All creative commons, Commercial use allowed, Modifications allowed, Commercial use & mods allowed, No known copyright restrictions and U.S. Government works. Thus making it easier for anyone to access their content based upon their requirement type.
In case, you are wondering about a collection of paper folders containing old files and notes kept by criminal investigators after reading the name, then I’m sure you aren’t the only one.
Morguefile is a free photo archive “for creatives, by creatives.” Founded by Michael Connors in the early Internet days of 1996, the website was created to serve as a free image exchange for creative professionals and teachers to use in their work. As of today, MorgueFile has over 400,000 free stock photos for commercial use.
Picjumbo is a free stock photo site created in 2013 by Czech Republican designer & photographer Viktor Hanacek. It all started when all regular stock photo sites rejected his photos due to “lack of quality”. Two years later, people have downloaded more than 2,500,000+ pictures from PicJumbo and now it’s one of the best sites with free stock photos featured in the biggest online publications. Viktor Hanacek self-developed the website using his WordPress programming skills and still runs on the same CMS platform.
Super easy to navigate, Picjumbo is brimming with beautiful photos with an edge. Less generic than a lot of stock photos, traveling, food and drink photos are particularly good – an ideal image source for a cookery blog!
Formed Pikwizard has a collection of 100,000 high-quality images, including 20,000 completely exclusive photos. Pikwizard stands out with its high-quality images of people. There is no attribution required on the images. Pikwizard also features an excellent graphic design tool and design wizard for novice as well as expert users.
Formed in 2004, Stockvault.net has catered its visitors with free stock photos, “ready to use” web layouts and logos, helping those who don’t have the means to turn to royalty-free agencies. StockVault claims that they are in no way trying to compete with royalty-free stock, but rather to fulfill the need for “somewhat” free stock imagery. As of today, StockVault has a collection of 139,590 high-resolution images with 102,525 members.
If your brand is fun and colorful, this is a great place to start searching! All pictures are photographed by Ryan McGuire and you’ll find his photography style quirky and humorous. He also offers his photos under the CCZ license and new high-quality images are added weekly, they can be great for a blog post to catch someone’s eye or to tell a story! Gratisography is ideal if you’re looking for something a bit interesting to inject humor into your site.
11. Foodies Feed
The niche is in the title for this one, stunning photography of food with delicious imagery. This site is a little different from the ones mentioned above, here you can either use a single image or subscribe to download a photo package that includes multiple stock images, I find them perfect for a big project. Here you will find 2000+ food pictures from Exotic Cuisine to Grocery & Ingredients and many more.
FreeImages hosts a huge array of free photos – according to the site, almost 300,000 are available – across a wide range of categories. Just sign up to explore everything from Architecture to Home Designs to Textures and Patterns – and there’s something for everyone.
13. Startup Stock Photos
Startup Stock Photos provides a selection of tech / work-related stock photography, all free for commercial use and great if you offer business services.
Dive into this easily searchable catalog of hundreds of detailed high quality and high-resolution stock images, Stocksnap has to offer. Nature photography is particularly beautiful. Also, check the links to Popular Photo Searches at the footer area of their website.
15. Negative Space
A carefully chosen selection of lovely pictures on an easy-to-use site – check out their nature & objects pics – unique photo collection for your website.
A simple, feel fresh site featuring a 1M+ collection of gorgeous, high-resolution, free photos from a selection of professional photographers. They do have a search function on the top, but I would recommend browsing their Tag links in the footer section for some awesome inspiration.
17. Kaboom Pics
Kaboom Pics – A photo community formed by Karolina Grabowska. offers a wide range of 21K+ beautiful images – from stunning nature to abstract photography. It is a fun and easily navigated site for all your image needs. The lifestyle and interior design are especially eye-catching. Photos from Kaboompics appear on sites like BBC, CNN, Forbes, Cosmopolitan, Yahoo, iSpot, BuzzFeed, Hubspot, The Huffington Post, Lifehacker
18. New Old Stock
Enjoy the moment of delving into history with this vast collection of fascinating vintage photos from the public archive. You can spend hours browsing through these charming old pics – completely free for use!
19. Life of Pix
One of the most modern sites on this list, Life of Pix adds a more interactive approach to discovering new photography. Here you can follow your favorite photographers, browse through the ‘Photographer of the Week’ section, and receive weekly updates – all with completely free photos for your site!
Skitterphoto is bursting with color and energy. All photos are originals from the site’s creators and are free for public use.
21. Jay Mantri
Jay Mantri is a California-based designer with a stunning back catalog of travel photos, all free for public use and updated every Thursday.
ScatterJar is a free resource of delicious high-resolution food pics. If you’re looking for sumptuous imagery, ScatterJar is a great place to start.
SplitShire is a personal photography portfolio provided free for commercial and personal use to make it easy for everyone to have impressive imagery to use and be more creative.
? So there you go – happy browsing & image collecting! Share how you’ve used images you’ve found on your website in the comments below ?