Everybody loves a good freebie! Especially businesses on a tight budget. Below, we have compiled a list of the best FREE stock photography providers you can use when building your brand image.
You might be familiar with a few, and you may pick up a new one or two.
Just for a bit of fun, we also took an extra step and created an image challenge. It’s an excellent way to showcase the differences between colours and themes.
Find a STYLISH and FREE photo that offers a working from home feel, for our female-focused followers to use on their website and social media feeds.
The theme we want the images to convey is – classy, happy and professional.
For a little variety, we wanted a dark & moody vs light and airy look.
Every great challenge has conditions, so we only searched the terms “working from home” or “home office”. AND we opted for some home office ‘tech’ involvement, e.g. a laptop, keyboard or mobile device. After all, what is a work station without a little technology?
We put these free stock photography sites to the test so you can be the judge of which website offered the best image for the challenge. Once you have decided, click the link to download the photos for yourself.
BONUS: Tips For Choosing The Right Stock Photography For You
Just like any good bargain hunt, when you’re looking for stock image and everything in the library is freely available, you want to avoid getting carried away.
- Make a list of the types of photos, look and feel you’re after first.
- Go in with intention, find those eye-catching photos that meet your specific image and brand requirements only!
Here are a few questions to get you started:
- What type of look are you after? Intense, dark, colourful, light, or minimalist?
- Do you need negative space so that you can position text nicely? And if so, on what side does the negative space need to be?
- What kind of image layout do you need for its purpose? Panoramic, portrait, square or landscape?
- Do you want the image to tell a story on its own or merely be a backdrop?
- Would you prefer that it came from a collection, so that you can utilise more images as a storyboard as well?
- What topic are you discussing, so that you can pinpoint what types of images are best suited?
- Think about your keywords and cornerstone topics, and use those words in your image search.
- What kind of feeling do you want your images to portray? Serious, fun, light-hearted, stylish or textbook formal?
Finding high-quality stock images to represent your brand image can be time-consuming and frustrating. But for those on a budget, sometimes a little freebie help here, and there can be a quick fix to get the job done.
Remember, even though they are free, some image libraries may have certain restrictions. Be sure to double-check the license on all stock photography websites you visit. Especially if you plan on sharing those images for financial gain.
Free Stock Image Libraries for your Website & Social Media
Dark & Moody Photo by Sincerely Media on Unsplash + Bright & Airy Photo by Emma Matthews Digital Content Production on Unsplash
If you’re on a tight budget, then Unsplash is an excellent source for usable images.
All of the photos published are free for commercial and non-commercial purposes and you don't have to attribute the images.
Creators from all over the world supply images, so you have direct access to professional photographers and freely published collections. If you’re interested in more from that photographer or want to work with them further, you can send a direct message, browse their full portfolio and follow them.
You can also follow photographers that you love and refer back to them in your future projects.
Finding imagery is as easy as searching the image bank, or clicking on an image you like and browsing its related photos.
Due to the vast array of contributors, most images do not offer consistent looks, but to get a more story-focused feel, you can choose to browse by collection.
Dark & Moody Photo by Dominika Roseclay from Pexels + Photo by The Lazy Artist Gallery from Pexels
Even though photos on Pexels are available for free, there are certain situations where your license may have restrictions.
They offer what is known as a restricted commercial license, where you cannot sell unaltered copies of the photo or video. Find out more about their license restrictions here.
Just like Unsplash, you can follow photographers that inspire you. One of the highlights of using Pexels is their search engine optimisation where you can browse by popular collections, colours, themes and events.
You can also browse the Photographer Leader board that displays the most viewed photos in the last 30 days.
You also have the option of choosing the image size you would like to download the image file in.
Dark & Moody Photo by fancycrave1 from Pixabay + Light & Airy Photo by LUM3N from Pixabay
As well as free images, they also offer free videos, illustrations, vector and music files.
The free music files are particularly handy if you are creating a podcast or a promotional video.
Just like Pexels, there are certain situations where your free license may have restrictions. Take a look at their simplified license here.
It is also wise to note, on free stock photography sites, contributors are not always professional photographers. Any creator can upload photos to the free library.
See what other people are downloading from are Pixabay on their most popular images here.
Burst by Shopify
Dark & Moody Photo by Matthew Henry from Burst + Light & Airy Photo by Sarah Pflug from Burst
Powered by Shopify, the Burst image library includes thousands of high-resolution, royalty-free images that were shot by their global community of photographers. Burst provides designers, developers, bloggers and entrepreneurs with access to free stock photography.
Here's a real upside... you don't have to be a Shopify store owner. Of course, you would be missing out on a great eCommerce platform, but anyone can use their free image library.
You can use their pictures for just about anything — your website, blog or online store, school projects, Instagram ads, Facebook posts, desktop backgrounds, client work and more. All photos are free for commercial use with no attribution required. Read more about their license here.
Dark & Moody Photo by Viktor Hanacek on Picjumbo.com + Light & Airy Photo on Picumbo.com
Picjumbo is a free stock photo site created in 2013 by designer & photographer Viktor Hanacek. Two years later, people have downloaded more than two and half million free pictures from picjumbo.
Today it has thousands of high-resolution free stock images that can be used for are business photos, free photos of people, technology photos and HD wallpapers.
Dark & Moody by Isorepublic + Light & Airy Photo by Isorepublic
Isorepublic is an independent website that provides curated collections of high-resolution CC0 photos and videos. They offer curated collections of stock images and videos that you can use both personally and commercially.
Other FREE Image Resources
Do you know of any other free image sources? Share your recommendations in the comments below, and we will be sure to inspect and add them to our list.
For female-focused business owners who want to guarantee their brand status, stay tuned as we compose our list of the finest paid stock photographers on the net.
Paid stock photography is more than a little time-saver, consistent brand imagery can enhance your brand awareness faster than you can say - keeping customers content creates certainty.