20 of the Best Free Stock Photo Sites to Use in 2022

by Helene Thituson | Latest update: Aug 22, 2022

Best Stock Photo Sites

The visual content is one of the most important thing when it comes to your website and your message to your visitor.

There’s one question I get asked quite often: Where can you find free images that are high quality and cleared to use for your blog posts or social media content?

It’s a question with many answers and admonitions. Essentially every picture made over the most recent 30 years is as yet ensured by copyright—an insurance that gives basically every creator the elite option to utilize or reproduce their work. In any case, you can locate a public space photograph, utilize a Creative Commons picture that may require attribution, or even make your own picture without any preparation.

In this post, I will share in excess of 20 unique sources and instruments with the expectation of complimentary pictures, covering accessible picture destinations, make your-own-picture apparatuses, and that’s only the tip of the iceberg.

Before using any free images read the terms

A couple of things to know before we begin. The following terms will come up regularly as we talk about free picture sources.

Read over the terms and conditions of each site you try so you know precisely when and what type of attribution is required.

What is Creative Commons?

Creative Commons is a nonprofit organization that enables the sharing and use of creativity and knowledge through free legal tools.

There are different kinds of Creative Commons licenses that range from allowing any type of use with no attribution to allowing only certain uses and no changes.

What is public domain?

Public domain is an area of copyright that has expired, been forfeited or does not apply.

Discovering something on the web doesn’t mean it’s in public domain – you must confirm this with a reliable source before using anything from these sources!

Works whose copyrights have expired, been forfeited or applicability are considered to be in the “public” and can still have restrictions set by law which will affect how you may use them depending upon your rights as an individual user under particular circumstances – this includes things like fair use principles established through case law over time.

What is royalty free?

Royalty-free images aren’t necessarily free. As a rule, you’ll need to pay a one-time charge to acquire the rights to utilize the picture.

Then you can use it as many times as you like. The “free” in “sovereignty free” just implies that you don’t need to pay eminences to the proprietor of the picture each time you use it.

For a comprehensive read on royalty-free images, check out this guide by Amos Struck.

1. Pixabay

Pixabay serves as a repository for a ton of quality photos that released under Creative Commons CC0 into the public domain. The site is clean and intuitive, making it easy to navigate your way through the 780K+ free photos, vectors, and illustrations.

The main search bar even allows you to filter your query down by factors like media type, orientation, color, and minimum dimensions.

Click here to view the full license details.

Want to see a deeper dive into some of these stock photography galleries? Check out the following video and download some free photos from HubSpot below.

2. Pexels

At Pexels the photos are carefully handpicked from a variety of free image sources to ensure that you’re getting only the best of the best.

All of the photos that make the cut are under the Creative Commons Zero license, meaning that they are free for personal and commercial use with no attribution required. And thanks to its search functionality, turning up the right photo for your next project is super easy.

3. Gratisography

If you’re looking for high-resolution photos that are free of charge and licensed under Creative Commons Zero, then Gratisography is another awesome website.

All the images were shot by Ryan McGuire from Ithaca! While their style may be quirky at times (we’ve seen everything ranging to monster feet slippers), they will work well in most projects.

4. Unsplash

Unsplash is all about freedom and creativity, with a simple license that lets you use the images for free. The only restriction? You cannot sell anything using these photos! Unsplash has its own license!

5. Burst (by Shopify)

Burst is a free stock photo platform for entrepreneurs by Shopify. The images are both free and royalty-free. (Burst has a cool section of business ideas, with tips and high-resolution images for for kicking your business off.)

6. Flickr Commons

The FlickrCommons is an excellent resource for finding free public domain images from all over the world. The site has no known copyright restrictions, but as always it isn’t a guarantee–so do your research before using any image on this website!

Read about their terms here. 

7. Magdeleine

Magdeline is another high-quality resource for free stock photography that doesn’t look like stock. Use the right-hand column to browse categories (nature, people, food, etc) or search by dominant color, which is ideal when you’re looking for cohesiveness in your design!

Be sure to filter down to CC0 licensed images, since some photos do require attribution.

8. Old Book Illustrations

Old Book Illustrations offers a really nice collection of public domain illustrations scanned from old books and vector graphics that can be modified for both personal or commercial projects. Perfect to add some vintage appeal!

Read about their terms here.

9. StockSnap

Stocksnaps is a great site to find free, high-quality stock images. The search functionality and quality of the pictures are both top notch so you’ll be able use this resource no matter what your needs may happen too!

10. Public Domain Vectors

Public Domain Vectors is the best place to find public domain vector graphics that you can use for anything! They have a huge collection of free SVG files, AI illustrations and EPS art. All images are licensed under CC0 so they’re perfect if what we want is an easy way into our project without having any legal worries about usage in other domains or media forms down the line

11. Public Domain Pictures

Public Domain Pictures is a treasure trove of free photos that can be used for any purpose.

However, some images require payment to access and this may not always work with your design goals!

Be sure you check the license before using these high quality files as they might have restrictions on how much credit we’re allowed given when sourcing our material from elsewhere online or even if there are release forms required by authors who’ve entrusted usself in granting usage rights upon request after publication date.

12. Jay Mantri

Jay Mantri is a professional photographer who has been inspired by Unsplash to create his own site with stunning and scenic public domain images from around the world. All of these photos are uploaded under CC0 license, which means you don’t need any credit or attributed them as they please because it’s all yours!

13. Realistic Shots

Realistic Shots is a collection of free stock photos that look like anything but the real deal. Every week, seven new images are added to this virtual gallery and they’re all under an CC0 license so you can use them anyway your heart desires!

14. Startup Stock Photo

Startup Stock Photos offers a range of interesting images to suit any need. From office spaces, work environments and brainstorming sessions they also have plenty pictures that show the latest gadgets in use!

15. Public Domain Review

The Public Domain Review is an ever-growing community of history enthusiasts.

They have collections focusing on photographs, illustrations and art from throughout the world that are all within public domain; they also host monthly posts highlighting less well known parts in our past with guest authors who share their knowledge about these forgotten moments or events!


JÉSHOOTS is a great resource for finding free stock photography. The images can be easily categorized into different topic areas, including tech devices and cities as well as nature shots to name just two examples.

17. Vecteezy

Vecteezy is a great site for finding free stock photos that meet your needs. Not only does it have more robust search features than other sites, but you can also filter by color or orientation as well!

On top of all this they provide signed releases where needed so users are protected from any legal liabilities while using the images in their designs- something most competitors do overlooked too!.

Vecteezy’s team of experts manually review each photo submission for quality, ensuring that their collection continues to deliver top-notch images.

18. Morguefile

The photos on Morguefile are not curated and don’t have a polished feel like some other stock photography websites.

You’ll find pictures of random people, everyday objects (like your aunt Peg’s Google Photos stream), maybe not big header images.  This place will provide all the free high-quality pics that one could need without any troubles or worries–just download.

19. Picjumbo

Picjumbo – one of my favorite. When designer and photographer Viktor Hanacek couldn’t find any stock photos for his designs, he decided to create a free photo site of his own. After all the other standard sites rejected him because they felt that he had low-quality images in them, two years later people are downloading over 2 million+ pictures from Picjumbo!

20. Rawpixel

Rawpixel‘s stock photo library is said to have the most diverse collection in its industry.

It also includes vectors, PSD mockups and public domain content like famous Japanese wood panel prints that are available for free download or purchase through their paid option.

Helene runs the place around here.
If you're looking for someone to help you launch and grow an online publishing business, she's your girl.

She knows what it takes to start and grow a blog that makes money, and she's more than happy to share her wisdom with others.

Helenethituson.com is where she shares a glimpse into her digital publishing business


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