We all know the saying – pictures speak a thousand words. However, using someone else’s picture off the internet can get you in trouble. And it can be a real headache to take your own pics or do your own designs. This is where stock images come to the rescue. And to help you out, we have put together a list of the 20 best free stock photo sites to get license-free images for your projects.
Why Should You Get Images from These Best Free Stock Photo Sites?
Any online business, be it a blog or an e-commerce website, needs images as this improves audience engagement. But as we said, using just anyone’s images can get you into legal trouble involving copyright issues. Luckily, there are royalty-free images under the creative commons licensing which you can use for your personal and commercial projects.
Now, a lot of websites claim to provide free to use stock images, but what if they don’t have the licenses themselves. Also, many stock images are so bad that it will do more harm than good to use them on your website. This is why we recommend getting your stock footage from these best free stock photo sites.
Not only are you to get access to some of the highest quality images available for free, but you can rest assured that they have genuine free-to-use licenses so you don’t get into legal trouble.
So with that being said, here is our list of the 20 best free stock photo sites to get license-free images for your projects.
Best Free Stock Photo Sites
Starting off our list of the best free stock photo sites we have Pixabay. It harbors over 1 million high-quality images and videos spanning almost every niche.
All images are available under the creative commons COO license, which means you can download, modify, and distribute the images for any personal or commercial purposes.
Next up, we have Unsplash – the industry’s leading photo community. It initially started out as a Tumblr blog and retains many of the community features including a dedicated blog.
Their picture library consists of over 300,000 photographs which include anything from landscapes to micro-shots. Needless to say, all these images are super high-quality and many are even used by industry giants like Apple.
Compared to Pixabay and Unsplash, the Pexels library can seem measly with around 30,000 images. However, their curation of photographs are really unique and high quality, and not necessarily available on the other websites.
Also, many of their image resolutions are optimized for social media use which is always a plus.
This is probably one of the best free stock photo sites with meticulously categorized images – falling under different labels and tags.
This helps you find the type of images you are looking for fairly quickly. Needless to say, you will find high-quality images from various niches and diverse resolutions.
PicJumbo has one of the better collections of nature and landscape stock images. They are extremely high quality, but can only be downloaded in the provided resolution.
However, it does come with advanced search options to let you find the perfect images for your project. Also, if you like a particular photograph, you can also request the search engine to show similar images to it.
Gratisography caters itself to users looking for license-free images for their print-based projects.
Their library of images consists mostly of portrait shots where the subject is standing in some exaggerated pose. It is perfect if you are looking for some quirky and creative images for your projects.
FreeRangeStock is another excellent photo-sharing website where you can discover thousands of ready to use royalty-free images.
However, because of the contributor guidelines, many of the images don’t show people’s faces and mostly consist of landscape or portrait shots of nature or cities.
LifeofPix is a stock image website run by a community of talented photographers dedicated to enriching the digital space with high-quality royalty-free imagery. Not only that, but you can even find free-to-use videos on their website.
Also, to help you discover new and exciting pictures, they showcase a “photographer of the week” to help you find new talent and unique photographs.
KaboomPics is geared towards bloggers and online websites that work in niches like lifestyle, interior design, and other sophisticated sub-niches. You will find thousands of high-quality images in this category.
It also allows you to fine-tune your searches using advanced filters like color and format to quickly find the type of images you are looking for.
Reshot boasts a massive collection of the most non-stocky looking stock images. If you are looking to include as unique as possible imagery to your projects, then this is a website definitely worth the visit.
You will find high-quality royalty-free images that you surely have not seen on other stock image websites. However, you will need to spend some time and browse around the pics to find something that fits your niche/requirements.
SplitShire started out with a focus on curating a huge collection of abstract art images. However, by now it has grown into an awesome image resource with free stock footage in the thousands.
Also, every day new images are added to its library, making it a great place to find new abstract stock images to use on your site.
12. Negative Space
Negative Space is another excellent website with a diverse collection of high-quality stock images spread across multiple niches, but mostly nature-oriented.
You can also finetune your search results by focusing on a particular color that can come in handy for certain designer projects.
As you might have understood by the name, FoodiesFeed is a paradise for food bloggers with its massive collection of stock footage relating to the food industry.
You will get access to over 1400 free food images covering almost every sub-niche relating food, dining, cutlery, and cooking. It is also perfect for restaurant based websites.
14. ISO Republic
ISO Republic boasts a massive repository of free stock images relating to almost every niche imaginable. It consists of hundreds of pages filled with gorgeous footage from beautiful landscapes to macro shots of flowers and similar objects.
All images are clearly categorized with tons of tags and supplemented with an advanced search function to help you find relevant images quickly.
Freestocks consists of a collection of high-quality free stock images but not that popular. Therefore, you will be able to find pictures that are not often used by other users ensuring a unique presence.
However, the categories are somewhat limited to niches only involving animals, nature, cityscape, with some object & technology imagery.
Stokpic is the perfect destination if you are looking for stock images with a lot of people in them. It also covers multiple niches, but most of its images are photos from beaches, city life, and the likes.
You can use Stokpic images for personal and commercial uses, but their license prevents you from redistributing those images.
Flickr is an online photo management platform where you can find tons of free stock images from different niches and genres.
However, many of its images are available under a paid license, so do remember to browse their collection of photos under the CCO license.
LibreShot is basically an online portfolio of photographer Martin Vorel. It contains a huge catalog of awesome clicks taken by the man and is available for everyone to use with their personal or commercial projects.
Most of the images are related to architecture, nature, and people, but these are awesome picks no doubt – far better than the average stock photographs.
19. Pixa Ocean
Pixa Ocean is a free stock image website run by a group of photographers who travels around the world and uploads royalty-free images of their adventures.
But with that being said, the site is home to a diverse collection of images including graphics for you to use with your projects.
20. Visual Hunt
And now for the final entry in our list of the best free stock photo sites, we have Visual Hunt. It is home to over 350,000,000 high-quality creative commons images curated from the corners of the internet.
You can search for images based on categories as well as color. Their collection of featured images is the best place to discover royalty free fantasy-based imagery which you can use as book covers, featured images, and so on.
So these were our picks for the 20 best free stock photo sites. Do let us know if you found the read to be useful and if it helped you find the perfect stock images to use on your personal/commercial projects.
With that being said, if you know some other awesome stock image websites that you use, then you can mention them down in the comments below. Your contribution will be highly appreciated and it might even help out one of your fellow readers with their own project.
That’s it! Now you may also want to check out our hand-picked list of the best free WordPress image galley plugins to help build beautiful galleries.