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Free Photos for Your Blog

Colorful brain scan of a mouse - US Science Departments, public domain photographs

Colorful brain scan of a mouse.

I’ve been collecting a variety of resources for free photographs to use on your website and blog. These images are, for the most part, free to use, but may have copyright and usage restrictions. Some may require registration, use only on non-commercial sites, and/or a link back to the source. Others may require more. Check thoroughly for the specific usage rights before using any of these images.

Just because you select a filter for public domain and royalty free images on a Google Image search does not mean these images are actually public domain and royalty free. Check. Ask first, they might say yes.

is a major resource for images, but many of these have restricted use. Not every image on Flickr or the web is free to use. Check thoroughly for usage rights, and if in doubt, get permission or don’t use the image. Check out Flickr’s Public Domain Photos’ Photostream for images specifically marked as public domain.

Autumn Leaves - Morgue Files - public domain free photographs.The images featured range from people, places, wildlife, and space, as well as textures, patterns, and artistic graphic images. These free photos sites listed may have nude or violent images, though I did my best to exclude image sites which specialize in those.

One of the best, kept up-to-date lists for images and graphics in the public domain for free use is Wikipedia:Public domain image resources. I usually start my search from their list, which includes government collections and resources, special subject-based collections, and more.

morgueFile, FreeImages.co.uk, Public Domain Pictures, Image After, Stockvault, and Stock.XCHNG are the ones I usually use the most, though Stock.XCHNG is not always free, depending upon the image you seek.

General Photography Images

Monet painting of stream under Japanese Bridge in Garden - Library of Congress.

Monet – The Japanese Footbridge

Government, Political, Historical, etc. Images

Mount St. Helens after volcanic explosion 1980, US Government NSGS.

Mount St. Helens after volcanic explosion 1980

Nature and Science Photographs

Patterns, Texture, and Art Design Photographs

The rings of Saturn - NASA public domain, free photographs

The Rings of Saturn – NASA

More information on Finding Free Images and Photographs on the Web


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Copyright Lorelle VanFossen, member of the 9Rules Network

Member of the 9Rules Blogging Network

28 Comments

  1. Posted October 4, 2006 at 9:25 am | Permalink

    Thanks again for your help at my blog. This is another fantastic list of resources. I expect I will be returning to your site regularly for more info.

    Check my blog today for my thank you post to you.

  2. Posted October 4, 2006 at 9:55 am | Permalink

    Great List. Thank you!

  3. Posted October 5, 2006 at 4:49 am | Permalink

    Excellent list of resources. Thank you very much!

  4. Posted October 5, 2006 at 5:11 pm | Permalink

    Great list, but you forgot one of my favorite resources: Wikipedia! Images there are categorized by topic, and mostly vetted for copyright restrictions.

  5. Posted October 6, 2006 at 10:39 am | Permalink

    You can’t leave out Zooomr (with 3 o’s) They not only allow you to create zoomable portals in your photos, but also have trackbacks so you can see how many people clicked on your photo and where. This is especially helpful for bloggers because it shows you the number of RSS readers that are clicking on your photos and because it shows you when someone else blogs your photo and can see what they say about it.

  6. Posted January 29, 2007 at 12:59 am | Permalink

    The new adress to Piotr.Pix is http://www.piotrpix.com/

  7. Posted March 3, 2007 at 6:54 pm | Permalink

    Don’t forget to mention openclipart.org.

  8. Posted June 6, 2007 at 7:23 am | Permalink

    Always looking for good stock photos. Free ones are the best :)

  9. Posted August 2, 2007 at 10:04 am | Permalink

    Hi Lorelle

    As a freelance sci-tech journalist of almost 20 years standing, text and image copyright has been a big part of the business end of my work. As such, I recently wrote an advice piece on what’s on and what’s not on in terms of credit and copyright. (It’s not bona fide legal advice so take at face value only, but hopefully it could be helpful to some of your readers).

    Please feel free to comment on that item and link back to your own excellent post and list of image sources. Keep up the good work.

  10. Posted October 9, 2007 at 5:02 pm | Permalink

    Please also see my site of over 2,000 large, high quality images at http://freelargephotos.com/ . If you use a photo on a web site or blog all I ask is a photo credit linked to my site.

  11. Posted October 10, 2007 at 6:59 am | Permalink

    cool website links and superb articles

    thanks

  12. Posted October 10, 2007 at 4:07 pm | Permalink

    Thank you very much for this wonderful resource. It really makes it easier for me to search for relevant images I can use for my new blog.

    Cheers!

  13. Posted November 20, 2007 at 10:53 am | Permalink

    Great post – here is another list of free stock photography.

  14. M Mattice
    Posted November 20, 2007 at 10:55 am | Permalink

    http://www.vintagepixels.com

    From the site…
    Vintage Pixels is a large database of historical, high quality, free-for-use images which allows people to share their archived photos. You can download images for print, or use in graphic design, as well upload images to add to the ever growing album of vintage images.

  15. Posted April 27, 2008 at 1:54 pm | Permalink

    Lorelle VanFossen has an amazing list of places to find free images for your blogs

  16. Yemek Tarifleri
    Posted April 27, 2008 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

    Lorelle VanFossen has an amazing list of places to find free images for your blogs

  17. Posted June 2, 2008 at 5:45 am | Permalink

    Great list, thanks…
    Take a note of upcomming photo resources for public at
    http://www.photoforpublic.com

  18. Posted February 27, 2009 at 3:01 pm | Permalink

    Good list. Used some of the links in my own one..

    I may add another free photo resource – http://co-photo.com/ – growing bit-a-bit with conceptual images..

  19. Posted April 30, 2009 at 3:36 am | Permalink

    Some new textures on FreeStockImages.org which can be downloaded.

  20. Jim
    Posted July 20, 2009 at 3:27 pm | Permalink

    Thanks for the resources. You may also find free images at http://www.sunipix.com

  21. Posted April 7, 2010 at 7:08 am | Permalink

    You can find more free media resources (including photos) here:
    http://vagueterrain.net/content/2010/02/free-media-what-and-where

  22. Posted May 16, 2010 at 12:59 am | Permalink

    Hi, nice list! A lot of free images can be also found at http://www.StockPhotos.it

  23. Posted January 30, 2011 at 12:01 pm | Permalink

    A good list. I have made a list of sources which offer free royalty free images. I have mentioned the ‘terms of use’ those sites as well. I prepared the list mainly for bloggers. Do check out: http://bit.ly/gbJb55

  24. jj
    Posted March 19, 2011 at 8:35 pm | Permalink

    Great list of photos to use for our blogs. I’m having a difficult time finding a site that offers photos that are truly free. I’ve used a few for my blog, but just lately I’m advised to sign up w/ my PayPal for month payments to be taken out of my acct. This doesn’t sit well with me, the photos I used before were really free! I realize I will receive some flak for not wanting to pay for photos that a photographer had to take the time to photograph then find a place to sell their photos. My only suggestion is don’t say “free photo” when one has to pay even $2.00 a month, that’s not free! I appreciate the list that you did supply for all of us here. Thanks so much, jj

  25. Anonymous
    Posted May 25, 2011 at 5:28 am | Permalink

    pixabay.com. They say that their images are public domain and that attribution is not required.

  26. Sachetan
    Posted July 8, 2011 at 4:48 pm | Permalink

    Hi, Lorelle. I’m just a new blogger (don’t know if I can call myself that since I have 0 posts) on the blogosphere. Started my first ever blog a few moments back, but didn’t know where to look for images for my very first post. I think your post will really help. I am saying thanks to Lorelle :)

    • Posted July 9, 2011 at 4:38 pm | Permalink

      Honestly, while it’s nice to find pictures, what you say will always win out over using other people’s pictures. :D Good luck.

  27. picdrome
    Posted October 24, 2011 at 1:02 am | Permalink

    http://www.picdrome.com is a growing Public Domain picture collection, free of copyright. All items are free to download for personal and commercial use, without restriction and are available in high definition. New photos are added on a daily basis.


53 Trackbacks/Pingbacks

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  2. [...] Free Photos for your Blog – Una lista molto nutrita di siti da cui recuperare immagini free per il proprio blog o sito web. Per progetti grafici “low-budget” o “no-budget”. [...]

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