How to get free images without getting sued or paying $175+!

It’s scary how expensive online photos can cost. Just do a search at https://www.gettyimages.com/ . A boring old photo of a desk starts at $175 and there’s still a load of limitations on how you can use the photo.

I can’t show it to you here because it’d cost too much! Here’s a link though:

https://www.gettyimages.com/detail/photo/laptop-notepad-and-cellphone-on-work-desk-royalty-free-image/1156540310 

How can the average person find images they can use both personally and commercially for no cost?

Here are some ways I can help (but make sure to check each sites legal/license sections to ensure you are re-using the images properly):

#1) Go out and take your own photos! Need a picture of a flower? Go outside and find one! But most of the time the thing you need isn’t near you…like say the Golden Gate Bridge.

#2) Draw your own image of whatever you need. Draw the picture of the flower! But many people are artistically challenged!

#3) Canva.com 

Get a free account and go here: https://www.canva.com/photos. Then click the dropdown menu and choose “Free”.

I tried “giza pyramid” and got a cool shot with The Sphinx and Great Pyramid of Giza:

Brown Concrete Pyramid Under Blue Sky by Florian Gerus from Pexels via Canva. Brown Concrete Pyramid Under Blue Sky by Florian Gerus from Pexels via Canva.

#4) Pexels.com

Get a free account and start searching for photos! They have a very loose policy where you can use and modify existing photos (but check their License section for details for the few things you can’t do).

I tried “saturn” and found this beauty:

The Planet Saturn by WikiImages via Pexels. The Planet Saturn by WikiImages via Pexels.

#5) Unsplash.com

Get a free account and change the dropdown to “Free”. Start searching. 

I tried “redwood tree” and found over 500 results! Here’s one nice one:

Redwood trees by Hannah Grace via Unsplash. Redwood trees by Hannah Grace via Unsplash.

#6) Pixabay.com

Get a free account and do a search. Look under the “Royalty-free images” section.

I tried “castle” and got 20,000+ results. Here’s a favorite:

Neuschwanstein Castle by jplenio on Pixabay. Neuschwanstein Castle by jplenio on Pixabay.

Many of these sites also let you easily give a shout out to the creator of the image. It’s also nice to give credit, even if not required, to the image’s creator wherever you use it.

I trust I’ve given you a wealth of “free” images to choose from while also saving you from possibly getting sued by someone like Getty Images!

P.S. Here’s a great collection of over 6,000 of the best photos of one professional photographer’s career taken all across the world: charlespolanski.com/protovault-discount. It’s worth checking out.

P.P.S. Google and Bing have image search filters that claim to filter searches for images you can freely use, but I’ve fond some of those images aren’t free upon further research.