Free Image Sources

Last Update: June 28, 2020

I see lots of members asking where they can source free images from, so while I put some more in depth training together to cover this, please find below a list of sources that currently provide images that are either Royalty Free and/or Copyright Free.

You will need to check the Terms & Conditions for each of the sources above, as some of them require attribution.

If you use SiteContent, that integrates with unsplash, pexels and pixabay that I'm aware of, which allows you to search 3 or 4 sites at a time.

One method I have recommended quite a few times, is to create a dummy article in SiteContent, add the images you require, publish to your WordPress website as a Page, then delete the page from WordPress. The image will then be accessible from your Media Library for use within your Posts.

Jim also rightly suggested that you can take your own photos where possible, as these are 100% free and no copyright issues to worry about.

Once the training is complete, I will add a link here, as it will also include details over the different types of image licenses.

In summary, you have the following licenses:

  • Public Domain - means images where the right have expired.
  • Copyright - means that the image rights still belong to the creator, allowing them to receive compensation.
  • Royalty Free - means that the image rights still belong to the creator, but there is no requirement to pay any fees for each use.
  • Creative Commons - means that there may be some usage restrictions applied.
  • Fair Use - means a limitation may be imposed on the use of the image.

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skmorrow Premium
Thank you for this!

I have also found that with SiteContent, you don't even have to publish the page on your site right? You can just create a new blank document, search for an image, set the size parameters, insert the image into the document, right-click and "save as" on the image.
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ChrystopherJ Premium
You're welcome Steve :-) and yes, you can also do that, although it adds another step in the process and can sometimes be slow depending on your internet connection, as you have to download the image and then upload the image to your Media Library. One thing I have noticed with members here is that they don't have much storage space on their personal devices, so downloading the images can also be troublesome for them. Using the method of publishing as a page and then deleting the page eliminates any performance or storage issues. And doing it as a page and not as a post means it will not appear in your blog roll etc,
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skmorrow Premium
Ah, interesting, that makes sense. Thank you again.
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ChrystopherJ Premium
*****UPDATE*****
I have just updated this post based on your feedback to include the following text, along with adding a few more sources to the list.

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If you use SiteContent, that integrates with unsplash, pexels and pixabay that I'm aware of, which allows you to search 3 or 4 sites at a time.

One method I have recommended quite a few times, is to create a dummy article in SiteContent, add the images you require, publish to your WordPress website as a Page, then delete the page from WordPress. The image will then be accessible from your Media Library for use within your Posts.

Jim also rightly suggested that you can take your own photos where possible, as these are 100% free and no copyright issues to worry about.
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DianeK59 Premium
Good list, Chrystopher, thanks for sharing.
I do use some of these occasionally but you are correct -- you have to watch their terms and conditions (varies from each).

I also use Shutterstock. It's not cheap, but I love the quality and number of images available. With several websites, I feel it's worth the investment, but most people do start with the free image sites.

Thanks for sharing!
Diane
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ChrystopherJ Premium
You're welcome Diane and yes, I agree with you, paid stock image sites do give you a lot more choice :-)
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Harrysastar2 Premium
Hi, Chrystopher, thanks for the info, I use a number of resources in your list, but there are some I wasn't aware of.

There is one resource I use quite regularly that isn't in your list that you may wish to look at:

www.publicdomainfiles.com

It includes pictures, images, fonts, artwork, clipart, and video clips; all free to use without any attribution or restrictions, including commercial use.

Best wishes.
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ChrystopherJ Premium
You're welcome Brian, I'll look into that website as well, thank you :-)
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Jacquie8 Premium
Thanks so much Chrystopher!

What a handy list!

This is a really tricky area for me, so I'm looking forward to your training!

I have also been sourcing paid stock photos for some situations, and working out what the different licences cover for the various types of usage is a bit tricky.

Was searching through commentary by people who are full time graphic designers and a lot of them are very unsure as well.

A while back we were trying to work out the rather convoluted agreeement on Canva for use of their photos... whether in the free of pro account. So confusing!

Best wishes,

Jacquie
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ChrystopherJ Premium
You're welcome Jacquie, I'll see if I can include that as well :-)
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Jacquie8 Premium
That would be fantastic to understand more... thank you so much for considering that, Chrystopher!
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