4 Best Free Stock Photo Sites

Trying to find an attention-grabbing image to pair with your blog article or social media post?

We live in a visually driven, digital world. But unfortunately, many of the most powerful images are proprietary and costly. Original photography and graphic design is tops, but here are sites you can use to find the next best thing.

1)    Flickr – Not all photos found here are free.  The default setting when people post photos to Flickr is “all rights reserved.” That means you may not use the photo without written permission. However, many great images are filed under the category “Creative Commons.” Here is your quick link to do an advance search for photos you are allowed to use for commercial purposes (scroll to the bottom to select Creative Commons preferences before your search): https://www.flickr.com/search/advanced/?q=gold%20flute

2)  Stock.xchng – I’m not going to lie… this site looks sketchy but I’ve been using it for over a year and a half now, and I can tell you it’s legit. The site does require you to create a login to download photos, and since setting up the free account, it appears that I am permanently logged in.  But I haven’t received any kind of spam from the site, ever. As you are searching this site, you may run across a few images that are only available for editorial and not commercial purposes. Steer clear of those.

3)     Pixabay – Even though there is a Sign up and a Login, you don’t have to do either to search and download photos.  Before each download, you do have to fill out one of the most complicated reCAPTCHa screenings to prove you are a real person. If you register, you get to avoid the reCAPTCHa.

4)    FreeDigitalPhotos – Here you may find and download small photos (most are around 400×400) for free with no watermark, but attribution is required. This means you must publish an acknowledgement to FreeDigitalPhotos.net and the image creator on the same page or screen where the image is used. If you don’t want to list attribution or if you need the image in larger file size, you have an option to purchase the image for a fee depending on the size.

Once you find the right image, make it your own by using PicMonkey where you can edit, add filters, or overlay images and text.

Have you found any hidden gems? Let us know!

This article was originally posted with IntheCapital.

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