It’s not always easy to find good quality and relevant images or photos for your blog. However, in this article, I want to share some really good websites that provide you with royalty free stock images.
Obviously, the best way to add free photos to your blog posts is to take them yourself. Depending on your niche, that can be difficult because not every topic lends itself to taking your own images.
If you have a food blog, it’s a great opportunity to take your own pics, especially if you are sharing home-made recipes. Show off your tasty dishes on your blog and at the same time, increase the trust of your readers.
Crafting blogs are also a good fit for taking your own photos. Taking your own photos of your creations improves trust and the provability factor.
I take my own pictures for my gardening and mindfulness blog, with great results. However, it’s not so easy if you’re blogging about business, finances or other topics that aren’t so visual.
If you do decide to take your own photos, you can get great results from your smart phone. Some cameras are fantastic and can rival a DSLR for simple shots. Make sure you frame your image well and that you have good lighting. Experiment with compositions and take several shots from different angles or perspectives.
When choosing an image for your blog, don’t be tempted to take just any picture from the internet. Images are usually protected by copyright and you could find yourself in legal trouble with the companies that own them.
And never ever take a picture ‘from Google’. Unless you know you have permission, don’t risk a law-suit.
Here is a list of sites that offer free to download royalty free images and you can use them on your blog, as long as you don’t sell or distribute the images. If you are unsure if an image is free, check the site’s licence details.
These are the main sites I use for my own blogs:
One of my favourites as it’s so easy to find great quality royalty free images. You can search by keyword but also by theme, like for example Spirituality, Architecture or People.
Their website states: “Unsplash started as a simple tool for creators. The concept was born from the pain we had in finding great, usable imagery. Today, Unsplash is a platform fuelled by a community that has generously gifted hundreds of thousands of their own photos.”
Very popular site and very easy to search for images by filtering them. Pexels has a great children and baby section if you’re writing a parenting blog.
Their mission statement on their website: “We help millions of designers, writers, artists, programmers and other creators to get access to beautiful photos that they can use freely which empowers them to create amazing products, designs, stories, websites, apps, art and other work. We call it: “Empowering Creators”
Over 1 million high quality stock images and videos shared by their talented community. Pixabay is also unique as it allows you to search by colour!
Their website states: “Pixabay is a vibrant community of creatives, sharing copyright free images and videos. All contents are released under the Pixabay License, which makes them safe to use without asking for permission or giving credit to the artist – even for commercial purposes.”
Not strictly a free stock images site but a design and template tool with millions of stock photos. I personally use the pro version to design my social media images and Pinterest pins, but also use the standalone stock photos by Canva. You can use the free version or sign up for Canva pro and try it free for 30 days.
I haven’t used these next sites personally yet but I know other bloggers have recommended them:
Over 6 million free images! Especially useful for lifestyle or interior design bloggers.
Owner Karolina states on her site: “Kaboompics is one of the most popular source of free images for lifestyle, interior design and specialized bloggers in World.”
Free high resolution photos, images and backgrounds for personal and commercial use. Easy to search by entering what you need in the search box or by clicking on specific categories.
Viktor Hanacek, photographer and the owner, states on the site: “I’m just a guy who shares his photos to the world. For free.”
An amazing collection of high resolution images. Photographer Ed Gregory decided to make his unused photos available to others and Stokpic was born.
He says ‘Not everyone has hundreds of dollars For Stock Photos’. And as bloggers, we are so grateful for his generosity. He started the Stokpic Sponsored Photographers Program and all the money the site earns from advertising gets returned back to the art world by funding photographers.
Good selection of photos for social media and office/boardroom related topics. The only drawback is there doesn’t seem to be a search facility but great quality pictures and different to other free sites.
Their website states: “What time we have outside of our work and projects we aim to spend finding and sharing the productive spaces of the world with other creators. We hope this project continues to be useful, and serves as a positive representation of the world of tech today.”
Great selection especially for the business and office sector. High quality and great search facility.
Their website states: “Our photos either come directly from our in-house photographers and archives or they are contributed by a growing community of creative and talented photographers.”
Just over a thousand pictures are available on Splitshire. The Huffington Post, CNN, Books Covers, Magazines and thousands of websites and blogs are using their pictures now whereas before they were ‘gathering dust on a hard disk’, as the creator states.
Their mission statement simply reads: “Helping you to be awesome out there with great content.”
This one is interesting. If you’re looking for something a bit more unusual or vintage photography, this site is a must. This is a gallery style site and I haven’t found an efficient way to search for particular subjects but you can subscribe for their latest collections.
Their site states: “The perfect vintage photo collections. Optimized, cropped, and edited for quick use. Minimum 1000px width, most at +1280px. Download is in .zip format containing jpg’s. Free updates forever.
I hasten to add that this is not a free site for stock photos, but they are so affordable that I have included them in this list. Especially as they are fantastic for beauty or fashion bloggers.
You can search by keyword, by category or even by colour! You can also subscribe to their newsletter and receive exclusive FREE photos in your inbox. So yes, I feel they belong in this list 🙂
If you’re a food blogger, this is a must go stock photo website.
They state: “Best resource for highly visually appealing free food photos in high resolution.” Can’t argue with that! Really great resource.
This one has to be right up there with the best, with a really easy search feature.
Their website states: “We promise our users an ever-expanding collection of the best, most beautiful stock images for free. And we offer these images under a single, simple CC0 license that lets you do what you want with all our photos, with no attribution required.” Excellent!
Their website states: “cleanpng.com has more than 3,000,000 transparent PNG images. What we want to do? Let designers kiss the beauty PNG images, do the design faster and easier. You are looking for the biggest png images database? here we are. Enjoy the HD and transparent images.”
I use this site a lot for my own image designs and it’s absolutely great. Easy category selection or search by keyword.
This is what they state regarding your download rights: “All the transparent images in cleanpng is free to download, and unlimited. You do not need register your email, do not need login with your social account. What we hope is: Share us to your friends and like our facebook page to get the news of cleanpng.”
I hope this post has helped and you are inspired to write an article and fill it with beautiful images. Let me know what you think in the comments. If you have any questions, I will try my best to help out.
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