If you are a blogger then you know how important role a great photo plays in your successful online campaign. Therefore, it is good to know where to quickly and easily find free stock images for commercial use.
Now… I know, there are tons different royalty free photo libraries online. However, many of them only offer images with price tags and different attribution requirements.
As for me, if possible, I prefer images that do not require ANY attribution (or other restrictions like logging in, etc.). It’s just about time management (in other words, I save a lot of time this way).
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So therefore, below I am not focusing on the examples of images that you can find in the following image libraries below (I suspect you already have a pretty good idea how a wonderful high-quality image looks like).
Instead, what I plan to do here, is that I am going give you a short (but good) list of free stock photo libraries, which offer images without a requirement to attribute. And in each case I will show you how to identify whether the image of your choice requires attribution or not.
That’s why I want you to be sure, the photo that you put into your article, does NOT require attribution.
Also, I want to make your photo finding process as fast and smooth as possible.
So, here we go:
Free Stock Images – Commercial Use and No Attribution
At the moment, Pixabay is my favorite place to get free stock images.
The reason why I prefer Pixabay is that all their free images have Creative Commons CC0 Public Domain Dedication (Universal).
Here the small resolution (S: 640×246) is hassle-free download. M /1280×853) and L (1920×1280) only require typing a captcha. Downloading an original size requires to logging in. There are no other restrictions.
Now coming back to Creative Commons CC0 1.0 – why is it good?
It is good because you never need to worry about attributing. Just download the image of your choice and use it in whatever way you like it:
“You can copy, modify, distribute and perform the work, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission.” (from CC0 1.0)
That means, you have to read how to attribute in the first place (if you don’t know the exact rules). Then you have to do it. While attributing is not that hard, it all takes time (depending how skilled you already are).
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The second problem with attributions is that they usually go into a caption.
But what if you want to use the image as a featured image of your article? Then it does not have a caption. Where do you put that attribution then?
That’s why I like images with CC0 Dedications – download your preferred image, do all the modifications and upload into your website – that’s it. Quick and simple.
The negative side is that Pixabay’s free stock image library is quite limited. Fortunately, it is constantly growing and its current 840,000+ images has almost always satisfied my needs.
And as you would suspect, its best photos and images are behind the paywall.
Anyway, if you need a great free stock image for commercial use, Pixabay is the way to go.
2. Picjumbo (50+ million images)
Picjumbo is another great source of royalty-free stock images for those who don’t like to play with attributions.
First, there is no requirement for attribution for almost all the images!
Isn’t that fantastic?
Secondly, the quality of the images are really good (the size is huge).
First, you have to switch off your browser’s ad-blocker (that’s how they make money). As a result, aggressively pitching ads are plastered all over the Picjumbo site and it is up to you to figure out what is what.
That’s annoying part of it. Even worse, some of these ads include search boxes and you can mistakenly search THEIR image libaries and not Picjumbo’s free images.
Second, the Picjumbo free stock image library is not really searchable. Instead, you have to go through categories and tags.
3. MorgueFile (350,000+ photos)
Also, the website is pretty much ad-free and easily searchable.
4. FreeImages (Close to 400,000 images)
Pros: The good thing with the FreeImages is that big junk of its images don’t require attribution.
Also, it is easily searchable. I really like the way they have done it.
First, downloading requires signing up in the first place.
Second, FreeImages free stock image library seems to be tightly connected to iStockPhoto. Time and again, while trying to open a searched free image, I found myself on the iStockPhoto website while trying to open a free image.
It’s tricky as they offer you free images indeed… But at the same time they are working hard to send you to their Premium site where you can buy their stock photos.
So here’s how to identify free images:
Open the image of your choice, then scroll down to find “Licence” in its descriptions. If the licence points to “FreeImages.com Content License,” then – Voila – it is free, even for commercial use:
5. Dreamstime Images
The good news: Dreamstime does not require attribution.
The bad news is that Dreamstime requires you to sign up first:
All pictures in the Gratisography image free image library are captured by Ryan McGuire. They are high-resolution stock photos, free, and you can use them as you please.
Sound great, doesn’t it?
The negative side is that it’s library is stilly tiny.
After all, with so much to gain — and with absolutely nothing to lose —
shouldn’t you at least take a look?
Free Stock Images – Commercial Use With Attribution
Let me give you three of my favorite image libraries that require attribution.
1. Wikimedia Commons Photographs
I personally use Wikimedia Commons quite often. To tell the truth, it has been my second choice when I in need for some great free stock images for commercial use. Wikimedia has plenty of free stock images but (as I told before), big majority of them require some kind of attribution:
Fortunately, it is easy to do as they have prepared attribution texts (with links, etc.) for you:
FreeDigitalPhotos is another great source of royalty free stock images with commercial use. In the past I used their library a lot. These days… not so much.
The first reason (as I already described above) is their requirement to attribute. The good thing is that it did not require to attribute a link. So I could merge the attribution into a featured image:
The second (and main) reason why I am not using FreeDigitalPhotos so often is that they give you only the smallest size for free. All other sizes have price tags:
Bad news to everyone who is looking for high-quality free images.
3. Flickr (Over 13 billion images)
With its over 13 billion images, Flickr is a tremendous image library, to say the least. Therefore, it should satisfy everyone’s needs. However, it is your job to figure out which restrictions apply to each of these images.
For example, below is a random Donald Trump photo that found in Flickr (in fact, only a bottom right part of it). Please notice that small blue link below the photo, saying: “Some rights reserved:”
In this particular case, the Creative Commons CC BY-SA 2.0 page will be opened. That’s where you will learn how you can use the photo (and how you cannot).
However, if the link says: “All rights reserved,” you are not allowed to use the image (at least not for free):
“You, the copyright holder, reserve all rights provided by copyright law, such as the right to make copies, distribute your work, perform your work, license, or otherwise exploit your work; no rights are waived under this license.” (Licence type, by Flickr)
What About You
Now that you have seen my choice websites that offer free stock images for commercial use, what do you think?
Do you know any other awesome Free stock image websites with no attribution requirement?
Please let me know by dropping a comment below.
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