The early stages of running a business usually entail a lack of funds, especially for investing in non-priority fields such as imagery, and website design.
Luckily, whether for the up-start entrepreneur, or even the everyday visitor who is looking for a new desktop background, there are a number of sites offering free stock photos. While attribution in many cases is still required (which makes sense after all), getting access to free high quality images is almost a holy grail of the internet, making the ability to utilize such images without charge all the more valuable.
Here are a few sites definitely worth a visit:
Fitting name right? The website was set up by photographers Allie and Dan as a way to solve the problem of brands and bloggers not being able to find suitable images to match their vision. The site allows you to sign up free of charge, and provides you with a monthly allocation of high quality images. For $10 a month, users can sign up for a premium account, offering access to the site’s full library.
My personal inspiration for writing this article. Unsplash is a refreshingly straight forward site with a simply premise. Ten new photos every ten days. The images on the site are licensed under Creative Commons Zero, meaning that users are allowed to use, and modify the photographs as they please. The quality of the photographs is also impressive, and covers a range of artistic perspectives.
Almost like a Google for images, given the search bar on the homepage which allows visitors to type in a specific category of photo they want, with the site then producing a series of results. The most impressive aspect of Stocksnap is the range its archive has. With numerous photos dedicated to several diverse fields, you’re almost guaranteed to find what you were looking for.
An Italian online venture created by a web designer looking to make it easier for individuals to access high quality photos for commercial use, Splitshare also has a premium option which for a fee will deliver new photos to a customer’s dropbox on a daily basis.
Probably the most unique concept on the list. The website takes old images from public archives, free of any copyright, and hosts them for both personal, and commercial use. Even if someone doesn’t intend to use the images for promotion, the history geek in them is bound to be interested by what the page has to offer.
Attribution is necessary here as the site is the online studio of Dutch interaction designer Folkert Gorter. The site has a number of individual uploads, primarily focusing on nature, and landscapes. All images are of stunningly high quality, and possess an artistic touch, generally missing from normal stock imagery.