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Royalty-Free Stock Photos and Images – A List of Websites

These are the main sites we use when browsing for images to use in cover designs, social networking media, and interior book photographs. If you don’t mind the time searching for them, you can sometimes find great images to use absolutely free. Other times it makes sense to buy limited rights to an image for the best selection and quality. We have broken these sites down into two categories: purchased rights and free.

Purchased Rights

123RF – “Over 72 Million Stock Images, Vectors, Footage and Audio Clips At Stunningly Low Prices”

Deposit Photos – “Over 60 million high-quality royalty-free stock images.”

Dreamstime – “55 million stock images, world’s largest stock community, 17 million users”

Fotolio – “74 Million Royalty-Free Images, Vectors and Videos”

iStock – “Incredible stock. Flexible pricing.”

Shutterstock – “Stunning content, straightforward prices.”


While labeled “free,” many of these sites blur the lines between ads and images.

DeviantArt – not always free, but good for finding artwork and artists.

Fancy Crave – “Every day I publish two high-resolution photos that you can use for your personal and commercial projects.”

Free Images – “Browse Free Photos and Illustrations”

Gratisography – “Free high-resolution pictures you can use on your personal and commercial projects.”

IM Free – “A curated collection of free web design resources, all for commercial use.”

ISO Republic – “Free stock photos for creatives.”

Jay Mantri – “Free pics. Do anything (CCO). Make Magic.”

Kaboom Pics – “Great place to get breathtaking free pictures for business or personal projects.”

Life of Pix – “Free high resolution photography.”

Morguefile – “Free images for creatives, by creatives.”

Negative Space – “For personal or commercial projects, all of our CCo licensed images are completely free to use!

New Old Stock – “Vintage photos from the public archives.”

Pexels – “Best free stock photos in one place.”

PhotoPin – “Search millions of Creative Commons photos and add them to your blog posts easily.”

PicJumbo – “The Best of Best Free Images”

Pixabay – “All images and videos on Pixabay are released free of copyrights under Creative Commons.”

SplitShire – “Free stock photos and images for commercial use.”

Startup Stock Photos – “Free photos for startups, bloggers, publishers, websites, designers, developers, creators, & everyone else.”

StockSnap – “Hundreds of high resolution images added weekly. Free from copyright restrictions.”

Stock Vault – “A free stock photo community where photographers & artists can share their own photos and artwork.”

Unsplash – “Free (do whatever you want) high-resolution photos.”

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