December 16, 2016

Best places to get free images for your website

Images are an essential aspect of any website, but the process of choosing the right ones can be a long and arduous one.

For some websites Рlike ecommerce brands using product images or wedding photographers using their own work Рimages come naturally and easily. For others, getting the right image for the right blog post or resource can be a challenge.

That challenge is complicated by the fact that many of the best images are under copyright, and using them on your website without the copyright owners permission could land you with some hefty legal costs.  Luckily, there are still some websites you can use to find non-copyright and free-to-use images.

Below we’ve listed the best places to find high quality royalty-free images to use on your website…

www.freeimages.com

freeimages.com boasts almost 400,000 free photos and illustrations for you to use, which are nicely organised into 26 different categories. It also has an intuitive search function so you can either search using keywords or click through using the category links.

There’s also a lot of useful filter options to help you narrow down your search, including image size, resolution and even what sort of camera was used to take the shot.

Here’s the search results for ‘Leicester’:

freeimages search

 

pixabay.com

Pixabay is another huge library of images that are free to use under the Creative Commons CC0 directive – which means the owner of the media has agreed to waive their rights to ownership and dedicated it to the public domain.

As well as lots of high quality images for websites and presentations, Pixabay also hosts videos, vectors and illustrations that are all available to use, modify and distribute free of charge.

The search function on Pixabay is more orientated to keywords, although it is very intuitive and provides options to filter your search by image size, orientation, size and colour.

Here’s the search results for ‘wedding’:

wedding pictures free to use

 

unsplash.com

Unsplash is slightly different to the above two sites in that, rather than hosting a full library of free images, it releases 10 new hi-res royalty free images every 10 days.

Subsequently it’s not the best option if you are looking for a very specific kind of image, but it is the place to go if you’re looking for very striking and beautiful images.

There is also a ‘Collections’ menu which helps to organise all the different photo releases into categories, and a search box to help you drill down and find images.

Here’s the search results for ‘cars’:

photos of cars unsplash

 

photopin.com

PhotoPin is a great photo search engine which lets you search millions of images that are licensed under the Creative Commons to use for your websites and blogs.

It works by crawling Flickr and identifying all the photos that are available to use for free, and then adds them to it’s huge library.

The result is perhaps the best library of free and specific photos – although as these are very much ‘user generated’ photos the quality of the image varies.

Here’s the search results for ‘Leicester’:

photos of leicester on photopin

 

New Old Stock

New Old Stock is a fantastic source of historical and vintage photos that, in their words, are ‘free of known copyright restrictions’.

It may be a bit specialist, but you can find some awesome photographs here – like this one of the Queen on a walkabout in Hull in 1977:

Queen

 

www.gettyimages.co.uk

A huge commercial image repository like Getty might not be your first thought when you’re looking for royalty-free images for your website, but Getty now allows webmasters to embed their images for free.

This is a great option if you particular want to find topical images for a blog post, like this one of Nigel Farage visiting Trump Tower:

 

www.publicdomainpictures.net

Public Domain Pictures hosts a huge library of royalty free photos and images, with a search bar and category menu to help you find what you need.

Here’s the search results for ‘birds’:

public domain images of birds

 

 

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