This article is for all of you who create banner ads, social media posts, e-mail newsletter images or any type of work that requires the use of good quality images.
The first thing that most of us probably do is start searching for images on Google or Pinterest, right-click, hit save and… yeah, no one will ever find out right? Well, you just opened the Pandora box.
Using someone else’s images for your own purposes without asking their permission or even crediting them is really not cool. If you’re not sure about the copyright law, just find few good articles online on this topic.
Remember one thing – copyright becomes effective as soon as the work is created even when it’s still not published. No matter if we use just one piece of the work or we modified it slightly, it still applies.
So is it really worth risking? Sure not! Is it worth spending dollars on stock images? 100 times no!! And why? Because there are great websites out there offering you a fantastic selection of free of rights, high quality photos FOR FREE! Here’s a list of the websites I can recommend to everybody:
What I like about that website are the search and browse functions – you can just type in what you’re looking for or click on the categories or tags. PicJumbogives you the opportunity to “Test Drive” the image and see different combinations of how the image can be used. Images are free for personal and commercial use.
Big plus for StockSnap for not overwhelming the website with ads. You can search for a specific photo or look at all photos (sorting based on date, trending, most downloaded ones, or viewed ones). You download a high res photo free of copyright and free of charge. Subscribe for their newsletter to receive new photos via e-mail.
If you’re familiar with different WordPress themes, 75% of the photos they’re using comes from Unsplash. They’re awesome! Search or use one of the suggested filters and don’t forget to switch between “All” and “Featured” on the left hand side (I missed many photos at beginning). Worried that the photos are so gorgeous they can’t be used for commercial purposes? Here’s what the owners of Unsplash say: All photos published on Unsplash are licensed under Creative Commons Zero which means you can copy, modify, distribute and use the photos for free, including commercial purposes, without asking permission from or providing attribution to the photographer or Unsplash.
It’s a great source for Instagram pictures and if you sometimes lack those pretty but natural looking images that you can’t take yourself, it’s the place to go to! Just click on the “Images” tab and browse through the collection of square images (this means they’re perfect for Instagram!). Clicking on the image begins to download a high res image. Just remember to credit the author if you’re using it for your purposes.
Really cool site full of quirky, artsy and funny images that could be used for advertising material. It’s a project led by Ryan McGuire (check his website at http://www.laughandpee.com/) who shares his funny story and even better photos. Just start browsing!
Do you have your own favorite website? What are you looking for in tools like that and what do you miss? I’ve shared my top websites with you, so let me hear from you too!