8 Best Places for Free Stock Photos and Free Images

By Jesse Clayton, Art Director

Stock photos are often times the most cost effective way to bring life to a website or any marketing material you’re producing. But, let’s be honest, they’re expensive and you have to purchase credits and jump through hoops just to get your photo. That’s why we love free stock photos for certain situations. The quality of the images isn’t always as nice, but many times they do the job. So, we put together the top eight places you should look the next time you need stock photos or images. Here they are in order of our most favorite:

#1: Flickr - Creative Commons (flickr.com/creativecommons)

Searching Flickr under its Creative Commons license is highly undervalued and has some of the best free images that you can find. All the photos are user uploaded so it gives them the “real” feeling that other cheesy stock photos don’t have. Make Flickr under the Creative Commons your top choice for images the next time you need one.

#2: EveryStockPhoto (everystockphoto.com)

This site has a semi-clean layout to it so you can easily start searching for the stock photos you need. These images are more the stock you’re used too, but there are unique photographs in there that can really compliment what you’re building. It’s one of our top resources for free stock photos because of its unique nature and reputation for having some amazing pictures.

#3: Free Images (freeimages.com)

Free Images is a great site to get simple photos that you may need. Their selection won’t hit you over the top and wow you, but there is a huge number of stock photos to choose from and you just have to be patient when searching for just the right one. 

#4: CG Textures (cgtextures.com)

At first blush you might think this is just for patterns and textures, but CG Textures is so much more. The site layout is a bit clunky making it somewhat hard to navigate, but you can find some awesome free photos in here that will really set your next project apart.

#5: Pixabay (pixabay.com)

Pixabay doesn’t have the widest of selections, but they do have some hidden gems that will certainly come in handy. It takes a little time to adjust your search to find exactly what you’re looking for, but it’s a great place to find free stock photos you may not find elsewhere.

#6: morgueFile (morguefile.com)

No, it isn’t photos of dead people because the photos on here are certainly crisp and lively. Many of the stock photos on here are better than others, but it’s like all free sites, you have to work them. mourgueFile does have a clean layout, though, so you can easily scan through photos until you find the perfect one for you. 

#7: Stock Vault (stockvault.net

Many of the photos on here are your typical, say cheese stock photos, but they’re extremely well taken ones. If you want to have a generic shot, this is the place to go, but it’s also a great place for something you might not expect. It’s most certainly worth a look when you’re craving something different. 

#8: Free Range (freerangestock.com)

The site is clunky to navigate, but boy do they have some great landscape stock photos. For anything nature or element related this is an awesome place to start. When you can’t take your own nature photos, you can count on this site to give you some great ones!

Have a great stock photography resource of your own? Share it in the comments!

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