Looking for royalty free stock photos? Here are 15 of the best sites where you can get them for free.
Free royalty free stock photos are great for websites, blog posts, social networking sites, etc. They're professional looking and add a polished appearance to your projects.
There are thousands of royalty free image websites available online. To save you time and resources, consider using one of these royalty free image sites.
A note about licensing
If you don't want to get sued by someone who owns the rights to an image you used, then you need to ask permission before publishing any content from another source.
There are two types of licenses for photos online: one that lets anyone copy the image without asking for permissions from the original owner, and another that asks the owner to give them credits if they want others to use their photos.
There are many photos available online that are free from copyright restriction or are released into the public realm under creative common public domains dedication.
However, some photos may require attributions. We recommend doing your own due diligence and checking each site licensing before using them.
Now that we've covered some basic rules, let's get started by looking at our top picks for free stock image sites.
Our Top 15 Awesome Sites
1. Adobe Stock
Did you realise that Adobe Stock offers a massive collection of free photos and videos? Now there are even more options to get them!
The website recently added a new section called Free Photos & Videos, which features thousands of free photos and videos. They range from landscapes to portraits, fashion, food, travel, and so much more.
Adobe has also included some helpful tools that let people easily find images, organise them by category, and view specific types of images.
Depositphotos is a global marketplace where photographers can upload their work for anyone else to use. You can view photos by theme, topic, or subject. There are over 200 million images available to download, and many are available for free.
There are many photos available for purchase from the site, but they offer over 69,000 high-quality images you can access for free.
Pixabay offers an enormous collection of royalty-free images, vectors, icons, fonts, and backgrounds. They offer a wide variety of creative tools so you can make your own unique designs.
It offers tens of millions of free photos in assorted topics including nature, humans, travel, food & drinks, animals, cars, technology, and so forth.
Unsplash is an online community where photographers share their best photos.
Founded in 2013, Unsplash gives everyone free access to its collection of over two million high-quality photos. It doesn't even require credit!
Today, Unsplash claims more than four billion monthly views.
Pexels is an online photo sharing site where you can share photos for free. They're licensed under Creative Commons 0 (CC0) which means anyone can use them for any purpose including commercial purposes.
It has over 200,000 photos, grouped into categories including animals, nature and landscapes, food, people and places, travel, technology, art, etc. Photos are sorted by popularity, dates added, tags, and other criteria.
6. Life of Pix
Life of Pix is a curated collection of gorgeous, royalty free photography. Its mission is to provide high quality photos that are easy to work with. Every photo is CC0, so you can use them freely without having to ask permission.
It offers over 12,000 high-quality images, including both landscape and wildlife photos, as well as foods, portraits, and even some funny pictures. You can easily find whatever you're looking for here.
iStockphoto is an online stock photo service founded in 1996. Their service allows users to browse through millions of high-resolution photograph sand illustrations available for licensing.
Photos can be downloaded for personal or commercial purposes. Free accounts allow unlimited downloads while paying members can access more features such as advanced image editing.
8. ISO Republic
ISO Republic is an independent site devoted to providing high quality royalty free photos and videos under a CC0 license. Founded in 2013, it has become one of the largest sources for premium stock imagery online.
The site offers thousands of original photographs and video clips available for downloading in full resolution, suitable for most printing jobs. Photos are categorised into themes such as nature, architecture and design, traveling, people, fashion, animals, sport, technology, etc. And there are even themed photoshoots.
9. Burst (by Shopify)
Shopify's powerful free photo search tool Burst enables you to quickly locate high-resolution stock photography for your projects. It works well for finding product photos, logo designs, social page graphics, and much more.
On Burst, you can browse over 200 million royalty- free images, including some great ones for photo editing. And best of all — you don't even have to sign up to start looking!
FreeImages offers over 400,000 free images available for download under creative commons zero license. It covers a wide variety of topics from animals to cars, from sports to travel, from art to fashion, from nature to technology.
You can license them for any number of uses including advertising campaigns, printed material, websites, blogs, eBooks, presentation slides, videos, mobile applications, and much more! All the images are accompanied by detailed metadata so they're easy to locate exactly what you need.
Gratisography is an online resource for royalty-free stock photography. It offers a wide variety of high-resolution images from professional artists. There's no need to register or subscribe to use the service. Simply browse through the millions of available photos.
PicJumbo is an online platform for photographers and designers to share their original works. It was founded in 2013, and has over 30,000 images available today.
The images are easily found and displayed as groups, so you don't need to go through hundreds of pictures to find what you want. You can even filter them by using filters.
Kaboompics is an excellent source of high-quality images. It was founded in 2007 and now offers over 20,000 free images.
The site offers a huge selection of free stock images for designers, bloggers, photogs, artists, illustrators etc. They offer a wide range of categories from nature to fashion, cars, tech, and so on.
StockSnap.io is a great way to get some cool images for free. You can browse the collection of over 500k free stock images, illustrations, vector graphics, icons, and vector graphics. This resource is curated from the same folks who curate popular graphic design tools Snappa, so it's safe to say that there aren't any copyrights issues here.
The search function is extremely simple to use and makes finding what you're looking for quick and easy. It has categories like "animals," "food," "nature," "fashion," "travel," "sport," and "tech."
Rawpixel is one of the most popular image sharing websites online. With over 30 million monthly visits, it boasts a huge library of high-quality photos. You don't need to pay anything to download them, but there are different packages available for different amounts of downloads.
There are three options for downloading images: free, casual, and business. With the free option, you'll be able to download any image from the archive library without limits.
At Lift Strategies we use a combination of paid and free stock photo websites for our projects, depending on type of project, client budget, and audience.
Hopefully, you found this guide on the best free stock photo sites useful.