47 Best Free and Royalty-free image websites

Design Resources・Roger Moore・2021-09-01

For designers, bloggers, or marketers, we often have to visualize the content with different images, for the reason that the elements are important to engage customers. But there's always a problem to find free, high quality, high resolution and cleaned to use for social media or commercial use.

In this post, we'll share 40+ websites where you can download and use the images without concern. Though they're mostly licensed CC0, there are still some restrictions by each. Remember to check out when downloading. Enjoy!

First, let us learn more about the terms related to free images

  • What is Creative Commons?
    "Creative Commons licenses give everyone from individual creators to large institutions a standardized way to grant the public permission to use their creative work under copyright law. " There are six different license types, you can see the details here.
    Among those, CC0 (aka CC Zero) is the one that allows creators to give up their copyright and put their works into the worldwide public domain. It allows reusers to distribute, remix, adapt, and build upon the material in any medium or format, with no conditions.
  • What is public domain?
    The public domain consists of all the creative work to which no exclusive intellectual property rights apply. Those rights may have expired, been forfeited, expressly waived, or may be inapplicable. That means finding something on the internet does not mean it is in the public domain.
  • What is royalty-free?
    Royalty-free material subject to copyright or other intellectual property rights may be used without the need to pay royalties or license fees for each use. They're not necessarily "free", in most cases, you’ll have to pay a one-time fee to obtain the rights to use the image.

47 websites to collect free images!

1. Unsplash

UnsplashImage from Unsplash

All images on Unsplash are licensed Creative Commons Zero (CC0), which essentially lets you use the images for free, in any way you like, except for using them to create a competing website. Their pictures are high resolution, mostly offer by professional photographers.

2. Shutterstock

ShutterstockImage from Shutterstock

Shutterstock is a huge and popular material website. You can get free images weekly by signing up for it. If your budgets are spare, their premium plan is also a good choice that you won't regret.

3. Freepik

Image from Freepik

Freepik offers the best high-quality content, including illustrations, photos, icons, mockups, and presentations templates. They are free as long as you attribute. You can also consider their premium plan.

4. Burst (By Shopify)

Image from Burst

Burst is a free stock photo platform for entrepreneurs by Shopify. The images are both free and royalty-free, and they offer high- and low-quality versions for you to download.

5. Kaboompics

Image from Kaboompics

Kaboompics has its own license, which is similar to Creative Commons Zero except that you cannot redistribute its photos. You can search images by color and it also provides a complementary palette of colors in the photo, which are very suitable for designer use.

6. Canva

Image from Canva

Canva is an online graphic design tool that also offers free stock photos. You can quickly pick an image and turn it into a custom graphic by using their templates.

7. Flickr

Image from Flickr

Flickr is an image hosting platform where you can find images to be used and modified for commercial purposes. Select “Commercial use & mods allowed” under the “Any license” filter to find those images, and remember to check the license for each image as they vary.

8. Getty Images

Getty Images
Image from Getty Images

You can use images from Getty Images on your non-commercial websites for free by embedding them. If you need to download the photos, you must pay. Still, for many blogs, embedding is an option worth looking into.

9. Death to Stock

Death to Stock
Image from Death to Stock

Unlike most websites mentioned in this post, Death to Stock doesn’t have a gallery of images. It sends you 20 new photos every month when you sign up for its newsletter.

10. Visual Hunt

Visual Hunt
Image from Visual Hunt

There are more than 100 thousand CC0 images on Visual Hunt, no attribution is required. They also offer different dimensions to choose from when download.

11. Pixabay

Image from Pixabay

Images on Pixabay are licensed under Creative Commons Zero (CC0). You can use them without asking for permission or giving credit to the artist, though it’s always appreciated. Pixabay also provides some video materials, which gives you more options to create your work.


Image from CUPCAKE

All photos on CUPCAKE are taken by Jonas Wimmerström, the site owner, and they are licensed under the Creative Commons license (CC0), meaning that you are free to copy, modify, distribute and perform the work, even for commercial purposes, all without costs or asking for permission.

13. Magdeleine

Image from Magdeleine

Magdeleine offers a variety of high-quality free images daily, including nature, architecture, people, animal categories, and you can even search photos by color!

14. Pexels

Image from Pexels

Pexels has its own license, which means you can use and modify the images for free and for both commercial and personal use without attribution.

15. StockSnap.io

Image from Stocksnap.io

Stocksnap.io uses the Creative Commons Zero (CC0) license so its photos are free to download, edit, and use for both commercial and non-commercial projects.


Image from Stokpic

The advantage of Stokpic is its auto-deliver system. If you subscribe to Stokpic, they will send you the latest images, all CC0.

17. Vecteezy

Image from Vecteezy

Vecteezy helps you find amazing free photography, videos & stunning vector illustrations. However, not all the images are CC0, remember to read the restriction before use.

18. Foter

Image from Fotor

Fotor offers billions of CC0 images, no attribution is required but appreciated. There are multiple sizes to choose from when downloading.

19. Gratisography

Image from Gratisography

Gratisography also has its own free photo license, which lets you do almost anything you can think of. While they have a rather limited number of images now, many are high-quality images, and they update weekly.

20. Life of Pix

Life of Pix
Image from Life of Pix

Life of Pix lists free high-resolution photographs, mainly about the European landscape. If you want to receive a notification when they update, remember to sign up for their newsletter.

21. iStock

Image from iStock

Most images on iStock are paid-required, but you can get a new batch of free stock files every week when you sign up for a free membership.

22. Depositphotos

Image from Depositphotos

Depositphotos is a library of 69,432 free files. They offer a sample of free images, vectors, editorial content, and footage. You can also sign up to get the free stock files weekly.

23. Crello

Image from Crello

Similar to Canva, Crello is a free graphic design tool by Depositphotos, which has many free images for you to use, personally or commercially.

24. PicJumbo

Image from PicJumbo

PicJumbo offers a variety of free images for any kind of use—free of charge with no registration required. You can also get new free images by subscribing to their newsletter. If you have the budget to spare, do check out their amazing premium photo collections.

25. Free Images

Free Images
Image from Freeimages

Freeimages provides over 300,000 free stock images under its own license. The license allows a very broad range of uses, though it does list several restricted use cases, which are quite common for most free images sites. Kindly remind, you have to sign up to the site to free download images.

26. Hippopx

Image from Hippopx

The images provided by Hippopx are free to use for personal and commercial projects, no need to provide attribution, but it's appreciated. They also allow you to download with different resolutions.

27. IM Free

IM Free
Image from IM Free

All images on IM Free are licensed CC0, and they list diverse and easy-understanding categories, which can help you find photos effortlessly.

28. Pixelmob

Image from Pixelmob

Pixelmob allows you to search millions of photos from across the web And organize them into ‘Favorites’. Think of it A bit like Pinterest, but for finding and favoriting royalty-free images.

29. Pngtree

Image from Pngtree

Pngtree offers abundant PNG pictures, templates, frames, or texts. If you're with the free plan, you can only download it two times daily and must attribute the owner. Otherwise, you can upgrade to the premium plan.

30. MyStockPhotos

Image from MyStockPhotos

All pictures on MyStockPhotos are licensed under the CC0 license. This means you can do whatever you want with our photos, including commercial purposes. Better, the images are unique and high quality!

31. Skitterphoto

Image from Skitterphoto

All photos on Skitterphoto are public domain, which means that all photos are free to use for any purpose. You may download and edit photos and even use them commercially. If you're a photographer, it's also a good place to promote your work.

32. Pickupimage

Image from Pickupimage

Pickupimage is a free image website with CC0 licenses. You can copy, modify, distribute and perform the work, even for commercial purposes, all without asking permission. They also offer an online editing system that can crop, add filters, frames, or background to your photos.

33. PxHere

Image from PxHere

PxHere offers lots of free photos, all are Creative Commons Zero. Better, they provide you multiple common dimensions to download. How convenient!

34. Foodiesfeed

Image from Foodiesfeed

Foodiesfeed is a CC0 image website inclusive of food-related photos. If you're looking for high-resolution food images, you must visit this!

35. CleanPNG

Image from CleanPNG

CleanPNG offers millions of free images with transparent backgrounds and you don't have to sign up to download. They have multiple festival filters, which helps you find any image with ease.

36. photoAC

Image from photoAC

photoAC not only offers free images but also millions of vector graphics and templates, all for commercial use. They believe that imagination is the true magic carpet to make quality content.

37. Wunderstock

Image from Wunderstock

There are more than 100 thousand images with Creative Commons Zero licenses on Wunderstock. Most of them are free for personal and commercial use, you can even edit and use them without attribution.

38. xFrame.io

Image from xFrame

xFrame is a free image site dedicated to "high quality, creative Asian people photos" by professional photographers. All free and commercial use allowed.

39. SplitShire

Image from SplitShire

SplitShire offers high-resolution images and videos with Creative Commons licenses. They include a variety of styles and can be downloaded without sign up to SpiltShire.

40. Pakutaso

Image from Pakutaso

Pakutaso is a Japanese free image website, includes Asian or Eastern culture photos. They are high quality and free to use.

41. The Jopwell Collection (by Jopwell)

The Jopwell Collection
Image from The Jopwell Collection

The Jopwell Collection contains several albums featuring people in the Jopwell community, including workplace, sports, presentation, or technology photos. The images are free to be downloaded and used as long as you visibly attribute Jopwell.

42. WOCinTech

Image from WOCinTech

It's an album of photos of women of color in tech. The images can be used as long as you attribute #WOCinTech Chat or wocintechchat.com. They aren't updating now but remain over 500 images to choose from.

43. CreateHER Stock

CreateHER Stock
Image from CreateHER Stock

CreateHER Stock’s team has manually curated more than 200 high-quality images for female bloggers, creatives, and online influencers of color, they're free under some restrictions. You can also receive new free images every month if you sign up for their newsletter.

44. New Old Stock

New Old Stock
Image from New Old Stock

New Old Stock is a collection of vintage photos from the public archives. Photos on this site are at the very least available for personal and non-commercial use. If you are curious about whether you can use it, make sure to check the link pointed to the original Flickr posting, free of known copyright restrictions.

45. Superfamous

Image from Superfamous

Superfamous houses the work of Dutch interaction designer Folkert Gorter, whose photography is available under the conditions of a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 license. This means that you can use the work for your own purposes if credit is provided, including commercial use.

46. Google Advanced Image Search

Google Advanced Image Search
Image from Google

Google Advanced Image Search is a method of finding free-to-use images through Google’s own search tools. Just type your search query – take ‘harry potter’ for example, then click on Tools, then Usage Rights, and select Creative Commons licenses. It’s probably a good idea to then double-check that the image you’ve chosen is genuinely free to use.

47. CC search

CC search
Image from CC Search

A new Creative Commons search tool for creators seeking to discover and reuse free resources with greater ease.

CC Search searches across more than 300 million images from open APIs and the Common Crawl dataset. It goes beyond simple search to aggregate results across multiple public repositories into a single catalog and facilitates reuse through features like machine-generated tags and one-click attribution.

Organize your images with Eagle

Now you got piles of images on your computer, next, you should learn to store them logically. Here, I'll recommend Eagle, a powerful files organizer, to lighten your burden!

It can automatically organize your images by names, tags, or even color. Save you time when finding one and efficiently improve your workflow! Give it a try: https://en.eagle.cool/

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