Commercially or Personal Use - Free Photo Sites With Useful Information
There are many sites where you can download photo's/images or video's for free but some you are not allowed to use commercially and yet other sites want you to acknowledge the author's name and web link of whose photo you are using. You've been searching quite some time looking for that perfect photo and then you find it only to learn you need to pay the royalty fee which can vary in price while some can only be used for a certain length of time. Image if you will the many different sites that you can use for commercial or personal use with no fees and no certain length of time, just how nice that would be. These photos are of high-resolution and some are from well-known photographers. However, some sites that offer free photos still have photos on their site that they charge for also.
Some of these site offer in addition to free photos that you can use but tools where you can be creative with a photo whether it is your photo or one you want to use. Some of the tools I will be discussing throughout the article are:
- Photo Editor - Can change the appearance of a photo many different ways.
- Collage Maker - This easily allows you to tell a story thru the photo. Templates are available or create your own
- Design - Take a photo and you can design it anyway you wish, even adding ribbons to a picture or maybe a bear riding a bicycle, who knows what you may wish to create with a simple photo as you are the designer. Templates are available if you want to use them..
Water Fountain On Pond
Different Types Of Licenses When Using Photos
Standard Royalty Free Licenses - Allows the buyer to use the photos for -
- Professional applications
- illustration Website/Blog
- Illustration of company brochure
- Multimedia presentation, printed presentation, or report
- Personal applications:
- Decoration of interior
- Illustration of a personal site
- Illustration of a personal blog
- Report/school presentation
Creative Common Licenses -
"This license lets others remix, tweak, and build upon your work even for commercial purposes, as long as they credit you and license their new creations under the identical terms. This license is often compared to “copyleft” free and open source software licenses. All new works based on yours will carry the same license, so any derivatives will also allow commercial use. This is the license used by Wikipedia and is recommended for materials that would benefit from incorporating content from Wikipedia and similarly licensed projects" as stated by Creative Commons website.
Public Domain -
Meaning it is free as there is no copyright ownership.
MIT Licenses -
Means that it puts the work in the public domain but the only condition is that the full copyright notice (which declares no warranty or liability) be included.
Extended Licenses May grant you extra rights -
- Intended to be given away or sold /any items incorporating the image/photo
- Postcards/greeting cards that are intended to be sold (similar print on demand services)
- Web templates
- Coffee mugs
Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0)
- This type of licenses grants the person to be free to share, copy, redistribute in any way they choose/format
- You are allowed to adapt by transforming/remix, build upon for any purpose including commercially.
- Must follow these terms: give the appropriate credit, provide a link to licenses, and state if any changes were made. Cannot imply that the licenses have suggested the licensor has endorsed you or your use. The legal terms can't be changed for technological means or prevent another person from doing anything the license grants.
Always check to see what the licenses state. If you are unsure there should be a link at the end of the licenses where you can send an email to clarify your questions.
Different Styles/Types Of Free Photo's Available
When you need a certain type of photo you want it to convey what message you are saying. Matching a photo to show an illustration of what you are saying can sometimes be tricky to get the right idea to show. However, by knowing what you want when you begin to search, which websites are likely to have the photo you are looking for and knowing which type of photo can narrow your search down and therefore save some time.
Types Of Photo's Available:
- Vintage Photo's - These are pictures taken from another era, which has faded color and usually shows something from that time era.
- Cartoon - Drawing/painting that is humor or satire but is a one-dimensional portrayal.
- Nature Photos - These are of wild animals that live in a variety of locations around the world. Can also be anything outdoors.
- Landscape Photos - Can be of mountains, flowers growing, rivers, lakes, oceans, trails, ect..
- Recipe Photos - Show the finished product of a recipe, show steps are taken to make the recipe, or simply be a photo of food of some type.
- Fashion Photos - Creative and stunning
- Wildlife Photos - Are very challenging to get the right angle and perfect picture.
- Black and White Photos - These are classic but show the raw beauty of the subject and realistic.
- Wedding Photos - Show a moment in two lives who have come together.
- Travel Photos - Capture pictures from around the world and can be of an event, the trip was taken, etc
- Time Lapse Photos - These captures motion.
- Macro Photos - The minute details that are not normally seen with one's eyes.
- Panoramic Photos - Give an illusion
- Infrared Photography - Rhommel Bernardino explains that "Infrared photography refers to a special type of photography, which uses films or sensors, which have infrared light sensitivity. By using infrared lights in a photograph one can bring special effects like false colors in a simple portrait."
- Motion Photos - Capture a few seconds of action before pressing the shutter button.
- Past and Present - How things looked back then compared to now.
- Colorful Photos - Mix of bright vivid colors to enhance the picture.
- Weather Photos - Capture the weather such as storms, rain, snow, rainbows
- HDR Photography (High Dynamic Range Photos) - Is three different types of images and merging them together which will bring out the contrast that is amazing.
- Underwater Photos - Pictures of species that live underwater.
- High-Speed Photos - See things which normal human eyes cannot visualize.
The list is endless of all the many different kinds of photos one can use commercially or for personal use. Other types of photos are:
- Butterflies, birds, insects, lizards
- Business/Industrial/Buildings/commercial projects/web designs
- Babies, people
- National Landmarks
- Sunsets, stars, rain
This is only a small list of types/styles of pictures that are free to use.
Vivid and Colorful Photography
"Our vision is to provide tools that are easy enough anyone can create beautiful photographs and professional-quality graphic design without any special skills or technical expertise.
Leonardo Da Vinci wrote “Simplicity is the ultimate sophistication”, and we couldn’t agree more. If it’s complex and difficult, it needs to be simplified until it’s effortless."
BeFunky Free Photo Site With Options For Photo Editing, Collage Maker And Design Options
Nature photos were amazing with a collection of 201716 photos. There were 106222 travel photos. All you had to do to search was type in what type of photo you were looking for, then it showed you how many there were and how many users. Actually, you could click on a photo then you could see who took the picture if you clicked on their name it talked about the author of the picture.
BeFunky Photo Editor
This site offers many different tutorials on how to create the perfect photo, collage maker, and the design graphic. There are five steps to creating a beautiful photo with very easy steps to follow.
- Crop Photo - When cropping a photo you can remove the unwanted part of a photo, improve the image, and change the aspect ratio. The composition of a photo is how you frame the picture. Another important feature is how you size the picture when you change the aspect ratio.
- Resize Photo - When you use a photo on Facebook it will automatically resize to what size they prefer so you can lose important parts of the photo such as the details of the image when adjusting the height and width.
- Exposure - Basically this how light or dark your picture will be. The exposure tool helps to correct the image brightness, contrast, highlights, shadows, and fill light.
- Sharpen Your Image - Allows you to sharpen your image in certain areas when using the sharpen tool.
- Saturated Color - This tool allows the person to change the image to be intense. However, you will need to be careful, you don't want to make a photo to intense where it won't look natural such as making the sky neon blue or a green neon lawn.
Collage Photo - BeFunky Tool
Designer Graphics - BeFunky Tool
There are many different types of templates available but some you will need to be a member to use but there are free templates. You can even create your own template by using a blank one. In the photo below I used my dog to create a custom template. Types of designs you can create with the templates are:
- Small Bussiness
- Greeting Cards
- Blogger's Resources
- Plus more templates to choose from
Designer Graphics - BeFunky Tool
Bucket Listly Photos
Bucket Listly Photos has over 5000 travel photos that you can use for free, either personal or commercially. Pete R (UI/UX Designer, Travel Filmmaker, DigitalNomad, Founder of Travelistly, Bucketlistly and The Pete Design), has created over 5000 photos under the creative commons license with the following conditions:
Licensing detail courtesy of Trey Ratcliff from Stuck in Custom - BucketListly Photos allows the use of Pete’s photos in two ways:
"With Creative Commons you are free:
- To Share: Copy, Distribute, and Transmit the image
- To Remix: Create Derivative works of the image
Under these conditions:
- Attribution: Attribution to Pete Rojwongsuriya and a link back to BucketListly Photos must be made along with the image.
- Non-Commercial: The image must not be used for commercial purposes under any circumstances. For clarity on what defines commercial use, please see below the Sample Accepted Uses below.
Sample Accepted Use Of The Creative Commons License:
Blog post about your travel
- Poster with the purpose to share and spread inspiration
- A website for your school project
- An individual using an image as a desktop background
License To Copyright
‘Commercial Use’ regarding the use of images online or offline is defined very broadly. The determination of commercial or non-commercial use is based on the contextual use of the image. The determination is NOT based on the tax-filing status of the entity using the image nor on whether or not a financial transaction takes place.
Commercial use of the photos is allowed only if expressly granted by Pete Rojwongsuriya. All commercial uses will incur a licensing fee. Our fees are based on the following criteria:
- Media – print, web, television, etc.
- Distribution Size – number of copies printed, viewing audience size, exposure (regional, national, international)
- Length of Use – 1 year, 2 years, etc.
- The prominence of Display – ¼ page, ½ page, full page, spread, front cover, back cover, home page (online), interior page (online), etc.
All licensing inquiries should be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org
Sample Use Requiring A License To Copyright:
- A marketing campaign for a commercial entity
- A fund-raising campaign for a not-for-profit entity
- A background image for a website about furniture"
Here is a list of some of the places the photos are from:
- Ajikistan - Argentina - Armenia - Australia
- Bolivia - Borneo - Brazil - Brunei
- Cambodia - Chile - China - Colombia
- Ecuador - Egypt
- Hong Kong
- India - Indonesia - Iran
- Japan - Jordan
- Karabakh - Kyrgyzstan
- Laos Germany
- Malaysia - Mongolia - Myanmar
- Nepal - New Zealand
- Peru - Philippines
- Singapore - South Africa - South Korea - Spain - Sri Lanka - Switzerland
- Thailand - Turkey - Turkmenistan
Traveling is like an open book, there is so much to see and learn from the experience. Looking at the pictures on their websites reminds one of all the things that will inspire a person to want to travel the world.
BucketListy Photos by Pete Rojwongsuriya
Bucket Listly Inspiration
As a photographer, my purpose is not to create beautiful or realistic photos, but to inspire others to travel. As stated here, my main goal is not to make money. I want to inspire people to visit these places I’ve been. Travel is the best education in the world and If I could play a part in inspiring people to travel, it would be through my photography.
All photo are licensed underCreative Commons CC0 license which grants you the following rights:
- Copy, edit, or share that photo
- Personal or commercial use
- Allowed to without purchase, permission, or giving attribution to the creator
NegativeSpace states "Most people who look at this photo are familiar with this sort of visual manipulation. The blades of grass found in the center of the photo are clear and in focus while everything around them is blurred. This is how the photographer tells us where to look. Those blades of grass are the positive space (or subject) in this photo. The blurred area that allows us to focus on the subject is the negative space." This type of photos isn't well known. Twenty new photos are added weekly. The photos are searchable by color, type, category, and copy space.
Abstract, Animals, Architecture, Arts/Design, Business, Black & White, Food/Drink, Landscapes, Nature, People, Sport, Street, Technology, Transport, Travel, Typography, and Work.
Barn Images has many different categories to choose from for free photos but the website also has free tools for you to edit the images and can be used on social media plus six free logo templates. There were six free tools under Freebies and they also offered fifty free high-res images for Visual Marketing with our best photo pack, which was free. The total amount of photos under each category is subject to rising in numbers as more pictures are added.
- Abstract (178)
- Animals (118)
- Architecture / Cityscape (527)
- Arts / Entertainment (110)
- Black And White (141)
- Concepts Ideas (113)
- Food / Drink (174)
- Industry (93)
- Landscape (458)
- Lifestyle (149)
- Nature (495)
- Objects (317)
- Other (220)
- People (235)
- Sports (69)
- Travel Locations (383)
Launched by Igor Tepeshenok and Roman Drits in March of 2015. New free images added every weekday. They call their collection of free images "non-stock".
According to Barn Images, their licenses state "You are allowed to use any of the free images published in Barn Images collections for commercial and non-commercial purposes. However, the image copyright is still the property of its author. You cannot resell our photographs as prints, as photo stock (whether free or paid) or redistribute them anywhere else. You cannot claim the images as your own as well."
Igor Tepeshenok and Roman Drits say "Get instant access to our free photo pack featuring 50 amazing images. Plus, we'll send you more freebies, deals, and inspiring recommendations just enter your email address and click "Get Free Photos."
They offer free high-resolution pictures for your personal use or commercial projects and made by Bells Design and photos are by Ryan McGuire. They are free of copyright restrictions. I checked to see how many were in each section but no number was given. New pictures added weekly.
RYAN MCGUIRE states that the licenses can be used as "Almost anything you can think of. You may use Gratisography pictures as you please for both personal and commercial projects. You can adapt and modify the images and get paid for work that incorporates the pictures. This includes advertising campaigns, adding your logo or text to an image, printed in any size print runs (e.g., book covers, magazines, posters, etc.), on your website, blog, or other digital mediums, and on merchandise as long as the picture itself is not the merchandise."
Inserting Images In An Article
Raumrot Free Photos
Currently, they offer 1015 as of June 10th, 2017. They have teamed up with Frankenfotos( frankenfotos) which offers an additional 515 images that you can use for personal or commercial use. Raumrot has 63 photo sets of 12 and 15 special sets. Images are super glossy, royalty-free, and exclusive.
- Food / Drink
- Nature / Mountains / Seasonal
- Transport / Travel / Homeland
- Best of Franklin
- Hi[ster / Fashion
- Muscle Cars
- Logistic / Marketing
CCO licenses - free to use for personal or professional
Raumrot - Classic Reto Vintage Car
What Do You Think Of The Three Free Photo Sites?
Will you use these sites for getting the images you may need or want to use?
Free For Commercial Use
This site has 1080 images for commercial use that are super glossy images all by Mark Spiske. He has them as Creative Common Zero (CCO) license which means they are free to be used for commercial or personal use.
- Business - 118 photo's available
- Food/Drink - 112 photo's available
- Kids - 111 photo's available
- Nature - 119 photo's available
- Seasonal - 76 photo's available
- Sports - 107 photo's available
- Technic - 113 photo's available
- The Alps - 106 photo's available
- Transport - 104 photo's available
- Urban - 109 photo's available
All the photos are lifestyle imagery and the number of available may go up when more are added.
Marcus Spiske - The Alps
List of most popular categories of free images
- Animals (159)
- Architecture (185) - Buildings (146) - Houses (64)
- Blossoms (63) - Flowers (90) - Plants (85) - Trees (65)
- Blue (122) - Green (123) - White (61)
- Business (72)
- Children (106) - People (186)
- City (254)
- Close Up (163)
- Clouds (98) - Sky (107)
- Detail (87)
- Holiday (63)
- Landscape (100) - Nature (283)
- Macro Photography (112)
- Religion and traditions (91) - Buddhism (84)
- Sea (96) - Water (75)
- Sports (62)
- Street Photography (105)
- Summer (116) - Winter (78)
- Technology (90)
- Top (68)
- Transportation (78)
- Travel (125) - Asia (160) - Croatia (87) - Czech (302) - Europe (71) - Mongolia (206) - Prague (211) - Ulaanbaatar (89)
- Vintage (96)
- Wallpapers (65)
- Work (67)
Martin Vorel (Macro Photography) is the creator and photographer at LibreShot. All photos are guaranteed to be original and new photos are added about once every month. All photos are licensed using CC0 so you can use them without attribution.
Snapshot Verses Photograph
“Beauty can be seen in all things, seeing and composing the beauty is what separates the snapshot from the photograph.”
— Matt Hardy
Morguefile - Cherry Trees
Rudy and Peter are the ones who created Skitterphotos (2014) who are amateur photographers with day jobs from Groningen and Drenthe in The Netherlands. If you load your pictures they will be licensed under Creative Commons CC0. On their website, you can see how many downloads per photo, views per photo, likes, and the highest rank of each photographer pictures. Search for photos by using keywords also. Some of the photographers are:
- Peter Heeling (1102 images)
- Johann Piber (17 images)
- Rudy van der Veen (889 images)
- Lucas (22 images)
- Rik (25 images)
- Miguel Angel Padrinan Alba (96 images)
- Greet Landman (50 images)
- Lisa Yount (202 images)
- Rick Leeuwen (31 images)
- Martin Meijerink (72 images)
- All photos
- Admin picks
- Culture and Art
- Food and Drinks
- Nature and Landscapes
The person who associated a work with this deed has dedicated the work to the public domain by waiving all of his or her rights to the work worldwide under copyright law, including all related and neighboring rights, to the extent allowed by law.
List Of Free Sites To Use The Photo Editor, Design, Collage
Stokpic Free Photos
Ed Gregory the owner of Stokpic states "Why? a lot of people have asked. As a photographer, I take a lot of photos and most of them will never be seen by anyone. They just sit on hard drives, hidden, so I thought why not let people put them to use. To be honest it was a little weekend project that I set up to see if anyone actually wanted my unused photos. Amazingly I quickly received thousands of downloads and so many wonderful emails thanking me for the photos." There are hundreds of free photos with many different categories such as:
- Black & White
- Food & Drink
- Sport & Fitness
"This only applies to a select few images on this site so please check each image. All other images are under the stokpic license at http://stokpic.com/license/.
This means you can copy, modify, distribute and print the photos. The pictures are free for personal and even for commercial use. All without asking for permission or setting a link to the source. So that attribution is not required. Basically, the photos are completely free to be used for any legal purpose" as stated by Stopic.
Stokpic photo - New Year Eve
Time Lapse Storm
SpiltShire Free Photo's And Videos
SpiltShire offers free photos and videos which have 901 available for commercial or personal use. There are eighteen categories available.
How you can use the photos:
- Website or Mobile App
- Advertising Materials
- Image Placeholders for Bloggers or Websites
- Image Placeholders/Backgrounds in Templates for Sell
- Part of Template for Sell
- Social Media
- Magazines – Ebooks
- Book Covers
- Music Artwork
- Software Applications
- Personal & Commercial works
SpilitShire Free Photo's (Infrared Photography)
Free Images And Photos
This site freeimages.com has 390,337 photos and illustrations for commercial or personal use. Free photo categories:
- Animals & Wildlife (41008)
- Architecture (75584)
- Army & Weapons (51)
- Arts & Design (51076)
- Automotives (38)
- Business & Finance (12912)
- Celebrities (13)
- Education (4374)
- Fashion & Beauty (11316)
- Flowers & Trees (52529)
- Games & Cartoon (46)
- Food & Drink (24082)
- Health & Medical (1190)
- Holiday & Festivals (11975)
- Home Designs (7094)
- Industrial (28668)
- Landscapes & Nature (94667)
- Movie & Music (46)
- Outdoor Activities (10921)
- People & Families (41297)
- Religion (6111)
- Science & Technology (7034)
- Signs & Symbols (4782)
- Sports & Fitness (10825)
- Textures & Patterns (28936)
- Transportation (13658)
Free Image states "
- in digital format on websites, blog posts, social media, advertisements, film and television productions, web and mobile applications
- in printed materials such as magazines, newspapers, books, brochures, flyers, product packaging
- for decorative use in your home, office or any public place
- or personal use
The rights granted to you by FreeImages.com are:
- Perpetual, meaning there is no expiration or end date on your rights to use the content.
- Non-exclusive, meaning that you do not have exclusive rights to use the content. FreeImages.com can license the same content to other customers.
- Unlimited, meaning you can use the content in an unlimited number of projects and in any media."
Pixabay Free Photos And Videos
Pixabay has over 1.1 million images and videos combined. "In January 2016, there were about 33,200 active image authors. Hans Braxmeier himself contributed over 20,000 images, which were downloaded over two million times. The second most active contributor was Geralt, who uploaded 10,000 images (over 4,5 million downloads).
Hans Braxmeier - founder and CEO of Pixabay - has studied computer science in Ulm, Germany. During and after his studies, he launched several other web projects.
Simon Steinberger - co-founder and also CEO of Pixabay - studied chemistry in Ulm and finished his Ph.D. in 2011. During this time, he started working in the IT sector and developed various other websites, as stated on Wikipedia".
According to "Pixabay is a vibrant community of creatives, sharing copyright free images and videos. All contents are released under Creative Commons CC0, which makes them safe to use without asking for permission or giving credit to the artist - even for commercial purposes."
Pixabay - Steam Locomotive, Depot
Every Stock Photo
This is a real jewel for finding the perfect photos either for personal or commercial use. Some of the popular Searches are:
- Library of Congress
- Computer / Fractal
- Girl / Woman / People
- Smile / Hands
Everystockphoto states "is a license-specific photo search engine. Currently, we index and search millions of freely licensed photos, from many sources, and present them in an integrated search. Everystockphoto.com was launched in April 2006 and is owned and operated by Vibrant Software, located in Vancouver, Canada. Membership is free and allows you to rate, tag, collect and comment on photos."
On the about page offers a section which goes more into detail about the different types of licenses they use.
Every Stock Photo
Burst Amazing Collection Of Photo's
Burst offers a wide variety of unique photos in their collection which is regularly updated. Some of the categories are (only a small list as they have many more categories):
- Breakfast - Coffee - Food
- Fitness - Yoga
- Baby - Man
Please refer to https://burst.shopify.com/legal/terms to learn more about their different licenses.
Burst - Ladder Plant Shelf
More Places For Free Photos Compared
How Many Pictures
New Pictures Added
10 added every 10 days
100 added daily
New Old Stock
All photos from New Old Stock are vintage from public archives and are free of copyrights allowing you to use the photos commercially or for personal use. The photos are of a historical time being captured on film. You can sign up with your email address to receive photo packs.
PROState Library of South Australia Follow 280 South Terrace, Adelaide, 1939 (New Old Stock)
Public Domain Archive (Vintage And Modern Images)
The Public Domain Archive host a wonderful array of photos of vintage and modern photos you can use as commercial or for own personal use. Then on the free stock photo page, they list over 35 sites for free photos that are public domain images all free to use. A person can find the weekly images, modern images, and vintage images. The site was very easy to use as I looked around the site to see what they had to offer. There were 30 different categories to chose from.
- Free Stock Photos
Public Domain Archives (Images)
Free Photo Sites
How likely are you to use these free photo sites listed above?
Free Sites For Photos To Use For Personal Or Commercially
© 2017 Anna Haun