Top 17 Free Stock Image Sites
When it comes to finding photos and images for any DTP project, the best place to look is undoubtedly the internet, as there’s no better source available!
What Is Creative Commons Zero License?
Creative Commons Zero (CC0) is a public domain dedication that allows creators to waive all copyrights and related or neighboring rights to their work, thereby placing it as completely as possible in the public domain. This allows others to:
- use the work
All without asking for permission or providing attribution.
This license is often used for stock photos, images and other media. You should note, though, that using a CC0 work does not mean that you can claim ownership or authorship of the work, or use it in a way that infringes on other legal rights, such as privacy or publicity rights.
Pexels—online platform that offers a vast collection of free stock photos, videos and illustrations that can be used for personal or commercial projects. The site offers content in a variety of categories, including nature, people, business, food, fashion-related content and more.
All of the assets on Pexels are released under the Creative Commons CC0 license, which means that they can be used without attribution (though attribution is always appreciated) or permission, with some restrictions, like like reselling of unmodified photos or images are prohibited, making it a convenient resource for designers and content creators.
Pixabay is a vast collection of free images, videos and music that can be used for personal or commercial projects. The site has a user-friendly interface and features a wide range of content, including photographs, vector graphics and illustrations, all of which are released under a Creative Commons CC0 license, which means that they can be used without attribution or permission with some exceptions, which are stated in Pixabay’s T&C:
“— Don’t sell copies of content without meaningful alterations, e.g., don’t sell an exact copy of a stock photo as posters, prints, greeting cards, mugs, t-shirts or other similar items of merchandise.
— Don’t redistribute or sell Pixabay as digital content or as digital wallpapers (such as on stock media websites or as NFTs)”.
The images on Pixabay are contributed by a community of photographers and artists from all over the world, making it a diverse and global resource for visual content. In addition to images, Pixabay also offers videos and music tracks that can be used in a variety of projects, from social media posts to advertising campaigns.
Unsplash is a free stock photo website offering high-quality images with the Creative Commons Zero (CC0) license, meaning that they can be used for any purpose without attribution or payment (though attribution is highly appreciated). Unsplash also provides a search tool and categories to help you find the perfect image for your project. Additionally, contributors to Unsplash can upload their own photos, so you may find unique images while browsing the selection.
Gratisography offers a collection of free, high-resolution stock photos and images released under the Creative Commons Zero (CC0) license. All photos are free to use for any purpose and do not require attribution, but site owners highlight that “some pictures may be subject to other intellectual property rights” and recommend “performing due diligence before using a questionable picture.” Gratisography also provides a search tool and categories to help you find the best image for your project.
StockSnap is a website that offers high quality, royalty-free stock photos. All images on the site are free to use, and no attribution is required. The photos are organized into categories and can be searched using keywords.
The Adobe Stock Free Collection
The Adobe Stock Free Collection is a hand-curated selection of photos, vectors, illustrations and videos. All of the assets have been cleared for commercial use and do not require any attribution or credit. The collection is updated regularly with new and exciting content from talented Adobe Stock creators. Additionally, it is available for immediate download for quick and easy access. Adobe Stock offers both a free collection of stock assets as well as a range of paid plans that provide access to a much larger library of premium content. The paid plans give you access to images, videos and other creative assets not available in the free collection.
PikWizard is a stock photo and video platform that offers a vast library of free, high-quality images and videos for personal and commercial use. PikWizard also offers a design tool called DesignWizard, which allows users to create their own designs and graphics using PikWizard’s images.
In addition to its free content, PikWizard also offers premium images. You can click on the image with the Premium tag, and you will be redirected to another site where you can purchase this image.
rawpixel’s library features millions of assets, including photos, illustrations and vectors, with a focus on authentic, diverse and inclusive content. rawpixel offers both free and paid subscriptions to access their library, with a range of pricing options to suit different needs and budgets.
SplitShire’s collection features a wide range of free photos and videos in different categories, such as abstract, nature, people, technology and more. The content is known for its high quality, unique style and artistic expression. This is a popular choice among designers, marketers and content creators looking for original and creative stock media.
Burst (by Shopify)
Burst is a free stock photo platform owned and operated by Shopify, a popular e-commerce platform. It was created to provide entrepreneurs and small business owners with royalty-free stock photos that can be used for their marketing and advertising needs. Burst offers business ideas galleries that provide collections of curated photos and content around specific business concepts, such as women’s fashion, fitness studios or home decor. These galleries are designed to inspire and help entrepreneurs visualize their business concepts.
Kaboompics is a popular stock photography website that was founded by Karolina Grabowska, a photographer and graphic designer based in Poland. Kaboompics’ collection features a wide range of photos in different categories, such as abstract, nature, people, lifestyle and more.
All of Kaboompics’ assets are available for free download and use, and the website does not require attribution or a backlink. However, users are encouraged to support the website and the photographer by following the website on social media or making a donation. One of the unique features of Kaboompics is that the website also offers a color search function that allows users to search for photos based on their color palette. This can be a great feature for designers and content creators who are looking for images that fit their specific color scheme.
NegativeSpace is a website that provides free stock photos with no copyright restrictions. It was founded by a photographer named Samuel Zeller, who wanted to create a platform where other photographers could share their work and make it available for anyone to use, free of charge.
The NegativeSpace collection features a variety of images in different categories, including technology, people, nature, architecture and more.
NegativeSpace’s images are free to use for personal or commercial purposes, and there are no restrictions on how they can be used. You don’t even have to credit the photographer, although they do ask that you consider giving them credit when possible.
Fancycrave is a popular stock photography website that offers a collection of high-quality, free images for personal and commercial use. The website was founded by two photographers, Igor Ovsyannykov and his wife, who wanted to provide an easy-to-use resource for designers, bloggers and other creatives looking for high-quality stock photos.
Fancycrave’s collection features a wide variety of photos in different categories, such as travel, lifestyle, food, nature and more. The content is known for its modern style, clean compositions and vibrant colors. It is a popular choice among designers and creatives looking for fresh and unique stock photography.
All of Fancycrave’s assets are available for free download and use, and the website does not require attribution or a backlink. However, you can support the website and the photographers by following them on social media or making a donation.
Fancycrave also offers a premium membership that provides users with access to exclusive content, including new photos and premium collections not available to non-members.
On Foodiesfeed, you can obtain exceptional pics of gourmet delicacies in an instant and without registration. All you need to do is scroll the page and see what images suit your chosen content’s theme. To get special offers and enhance your user experience, you can sign up for a newsletter. If you would like more advanced options, it is possible to purchase extra stock photos at discounted prices.
Life Of Pix
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Life Of Pix is a site with high-resolution photos with no copyright restrictions. Professionals who upload their creations on the site work in different genres and apply varied retouching techniques, which helps you reach out to your audience via photos with the most suitable mood and vibe.
Whenever you are searching for photos for your desktop publishing projects that are totally free to use, Freerange Stock is another website to visit. Its masterpieces will surely leave you in awe. Aside from bright, vibrant colors, different photography techniques and photoshoot themes, you can find copyright-free graphics for your domain. The overall navigation pattern is intuitive, letting you search for great pics by keywords and discover the best shots in these unique photo collections.
Picjumbo is another space that popularizes content diversity. It is a marvelous website with free stock photos that will blow your mind. Images are available for commercial and personal use without any restrictions. The collection of themes is also mesmerizing—from food, nature and animals to vintage and business-oriented backgrounds. If you would like to reward the team for their amazing work, you can always purchase a cup of virtual coffee for them.
If you are also in need of free vector images, be sure to check out Amadine’s article about free vector design resources. With these sites you'll have access to a wealth of vector images that you can use for your projects.
Be sure to carefully read through each site’s terms and conditions before downloading any images, as some may have restrictions on how they can be used.
Ultimately, no matter which source you choose, these free stock image sites will ensure that your desktop publishing project looks its best. Go ahead and explore all of the wonderful options available—there’s something out there for everyone!