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Tag: photography

The following posts have been tagged with the tag photography:

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  • Where to find free stock photos

    Bloggers, and more, bloggers that are on Pinterest, know how important it is to have appealing visuals to attract visitors. But finding out where to find free stock photos is very time-consuming, especially if you want your images to be original and in the same or right style.

    This is why good, high-quality stock photos, or better, stock images are so important.

    Now, before I continue and show you where to get the best free stock photos, I have to explain a bit more about stock images and the right to use them.

    Sage Media free stock photo

    About Stock Photo Licenses

    I’m sure that you have visited a page once and saw an image, photo or illustration, that was perfect for your post.
    Some people can’t resist the temptation to download that image and use it.


    I actually know people that did this, often based on the assumption that everything on the internet is free. They aren’t ill-willed, just a little naive. It’s safer to assume that nothing on the internet is free.

    Although I am not a lawyer, I can tell from the experience these same people had that naivety will not be seen as a valid excuse when you receive a claim from a legal department representing the photographer.

    They ended up paying 4-figure fines.
    If you have images on your blog and you are not sure if you are entitled to use them, remove them immediately.

    I’m not kidding, do it now!
    But this picture is used by everybody…” – No!
    I used Google’s Usage Rights filter…” – No!
    It’s not the original, just a thumbnail…” – No, no, stop!

    Trust me, don’t take the risk. It is not worth it and there is a good alternative available.

    There are literally millions of high-quality stock photos that you can use for free. You just need to know where to find them.

    Finding Free Stock Sites

    The first way to get free stock photos is to download them from free stock photo sites. Often you don’t need to register, but it helps if you do. Some will keep a history, which may be usefull if you want to see when you downloaded an image.

    These sites offer high-quality stock photos that you may use for almost any purpose, without paying for them.
    Quality is important, and you will find that the best sites are pretty selective in what the publish.

    Make sure that you do read the terms of use, as some require attribution to the photographer (which is a small price to pay for being allowed to use somebody’s labor).

    Other terms that may apply consider the use of images with identifiable people or selling unaltered pictures. Take a little time to find out what you are allowed to do with an image. It’s free, you can spare a minute.


    The biggest advantage of a free stock photo site is also its biggest problem. There are so many photographers and artists that upload their images and they all have their own style.

    Next to your logo, the typography, and colors you use, images contribute heavily to the perception of your brand.

    You want to maintain consistent styling in the images you use in your posts and on social media, in order for your readers and followers to immediately recognize it as yours.

    Therefore it’s not just the question of where to find free stock photos, but also which stock pictures meet your styling requirements.

    Finding images in the same style may be time-consuming, so following a couple of artists or finding resources that already match your style will save you time.

    Styled and Feminine

    At the moment my main audience is on Pinterest.
    Understanding your audience’s preferences is incredibly important. If you want to connect with them, you need to speak the same language, in words, but also in styling.

    Pinterest offers you a lot of tools to analyze your audience and it tells me that 75% of my audience is female.
    About half my audience is between 18 to 34 years old.

    Chances are that, forgive me the generalizations, unfiltered images of garages or cars will not be appealing to my audience.

    The ‘Categories and interests’ also tells me that health, food, design, education, entertainment, fashion, and home decor are topics that my audience love.

    Unless you have great psychological insights or are a natural trendsetter, the best course of action is to follow the lead of others and see if you can optimize or tweak what you learn from them.

    So, researching these categories learns that styled and feminine images seem to fit best and are also used by a lot of other Pinners.

    1. Unsplash

    Unsplash free stock photos

    I love Unsplash and I use it a lot for all kinds of things.
    When I first started this blog I used Unsplash for a lot of posts.

    In the past months, I started using fewer photos for my blog posts and I made a shift towards a certain style of photos for my pins. Sometimes I experiment a little, but I believe that the more feminine visuals are better suited.

    Unsplash has some amazing feminine images that are definitely worth checking out: the Unsplash website.

    2. Pexels

    Pexels free stock images

    To be honest, I just recently discovered Pexels while doing research for this post.
    It’s not that they are that new or small, on the contrary!

    Pexels has been around since 2014 and they have an amazing collection of beautiful stock images you can use for all kinds of purposes.

    If you happen to be a Canva user, you will recognize a lot of the images as Canva has acquired Pexels.

    I particularly like their collection of styled images. Take a look at them at Pexels.

    3. Pixabay

    Pixabay free stock pictures

    Pixabay definitely deserves a place on this list.
    With 2 million+ stunning and free images, this is a great resource for everybody that wants to find professional free stock images.

    Together with Pexels, they were acquired by Canva, so you will recognize a lot of these photos in Canva too.

    If you like to edit your images, then design elements can’t be missed in your workflow. Check out their collection of design elements: Pixabay

    Here is a shortlist of other high-quality free stock photo sites:

    4. Reshot – Authentic curated collection of free stock images
    5. Styled Stock – A smaller, but stylish collection
    6. Kaboompics – Find the right stock photo in the right color!
    7. Burst – Powered by Shopify
    8. StockSnap – Beautiful free stock photos
    9. Picjumbo – Get the new photos mailed to you

    Getting Stock Photos from Freebies

    There are a lot of artists and agencies that offer free samples of what they have in store for you.
    I really like this way of exploring what they have to offer. Often you will find bonus material in your inbox after the first weeks or month and I do like to read the extra tips & tricks in the newsletters.

    It is also a great way to get to know their style and the type of images they offer.
    If it matches the styling you are looking for then becoming a customer may save you a lot of time!

    Here is a small list of fantastic sites that offer you free, styled, feminine samples to use.

    1. She Bold Stock

    She Bold Stock stock photo freebies

    Jasmine is dedicated to your success. She will give you tips on branding and even on lifestyle topics.
    And of course, there are images. Lots of images! And they are gorgeous!

    Don’t believe me on my word, sign up for their newsletter and get 20 images for free to see for yourself!
    Take a look: She Bold Stock.

    2. Ivory Mix

    Ivory Mix freebies

    20 free images sound great, but how does 550 sound?
    Kayla Marie Butler has created an amazing site with gorgeous and consistent-styled images that will make a great asset for your posts.

    If you subscribe to Ivory Mix you will get access to over 550 free photos and more! She also has free guides and marketing resources.

    Go check it out, you won’t be disappointed, I promise! Here’s the Ivory Mix website.

    3. Haute Stock

    Haute Stock free stock photos

    Just by taking a look at the website, you will know that Haute Stock fits all the right styling preferences.

    After signing up you will receive free stock images, but also additional visual branding and marketing tips.

    Grab it here: Haute Stock

    4. CreateHER Stock

    CreateHER Stock freebie images

    While searching for authentic stock photography that featured women looking more like her self, Neosha Gardner founded CreateHER Stock to fill in this gap.

    The result is a beautiful collection of images that have an authentic and personal feeling.

    There is a set of ‘older’ freebies containing over 180 images, but I’m going to let you search for it yourself. And while you are on her website: join her email tribe to get updates on fresh freebies!

    Check it out: CreateHER Stock

    5. Styled Stock Society

    Styled Stock Society free stock images

    I am going to end this freebie list with a link to Styled Stock Society.

    Be careful! These images are really gorgeous and you risk losing track of time by browsing through the collection previews.
    This awesome website has thousands of styled and feminine, stock photos that are incredible.

    Grab a sample of 20 free ones to see for your self: Styled Stock Society

    More freebies can be found on these websites:

    6. The Stock Boutique – sign up for free images
    7. Sage Media – free kick-starter pack of photos
    8. Pixistock – free photos, graphics, and a content plan
    9. A lot of paid stock sites have weekly, monthly, or new subscribers freebies. For instance: Shutterstock, Dreamstime, and 123RF

    Paying to Get Free Stock Photos

    I know, I know, worst title ever, but I couldn’t come up with a better description of what this category is.
    What I basically mean is that upgrading to a paid plan on design tools you already use may come with some additional benefits.

    If you run a blog, you are going to use tools to edit and create visuals for your posts and social media. And most tools already include a lot of stock images in their free plans.

    The real gems however are often part of a paid plan and these apps offer access to a bigger volume of images when you go pro.

    Now, don’t upgrade just for the images. If that is the only reason, you will probably be better off subscribing to a paid plan or buying credits on a stock site.

    However… If you want to use these tools to the fullest, then these plans will give you additional access to insane amounts of high-quality stock images that you can use.

    It also reduces the need to know where to find free stock photos as you have everything in one spot.

    1. Canva

    Top of the list, without a doubt.

    Canva already has hundreds of thousands of awesome free stock images (remember I wrote that they acquired Pexels and Pixabay?), but the Pro plan will give you access to an ‘infinite’ (75+ million) supply of images, videos, audio, and graphics free-to-use!

    Now, this post is about free stock photos but I must mention that the pro plan comes with 100GB cloud storage to store your visuals.
    If you work with graphics or audio a lot, you know how important this is.

    Sign up and try Canva’s full potential for free over a period of 30 days.

    2. Tailwind Create

    Tailwind is amazing. It will help you save time by automating your pinning process and to expand your reach with Tailwind Communities.

    They also have a great tool aboard to create pins, called Tailwind Create.
    The ‘Free’ and ‘Starter’ plans will give you access to 1 million stock photos, but if you create a lot of pins (around 100 a month) then upgrading to the ‘Advanced’ plan give you access to 5 million high-quality stock photos.

    Not familiar with Tailwind already? Sign up here and get 100 schedules (and 15 Pins with Tailwind Create) for free!


    The above sites are just a few of the resources where you can find free stock photos to use in your blog or social media posts. There are a lot more out there, making it absolutely unnecessary to take risks using images that you are not entitled to use.

    I cannot emphasize it enough: don’t use images without the explicit consent of the artist that made them!

    Finding images in a consistent styling can be hard and time-consuming. Try to find platforms or artists that have consistent styling and enough volume.

    Using tools that incorporate stock photos might save you extra time. It sure helps to keep all your resources and tooling together, reducing time to switch between tools or platforms and helping you to stay ‘in-your-flow’ while creating visuals and Pins.

    What’s next?

    I hope that this post gives an answer to where to find free stock photos.

    If you liked this post and would like to be notified about updates on this blog, then sign up to join my email list and you will get a notification in your inbox.

    Tell me, would you like me to find more free stock image resources? Or do you know sites that I really should mention?

    Drop it in the comments below and I will update this post if the site fits!

    And of course, sharing is caring!

    Thanks for reading, you are awesome!

  • Zoonar

    March 14, 2021 |

    Zoonar is a Germany-based picture agency that sells licenses for works that are uploaded by photographers, graphic artists, and illustrators. This includes photos, illustrations, vector graphics, or 3d animations.
    The earned commission (license fee) is shared with the contributor, or author, as they call it

  • Scoopshot

    January 24, 2021 |

    Scoopshot lets you submit images and footage straight from your phone with their mobile app (free) which will then become available in their store.

    You will get a notification as your image is bought, also through the app.

    Scoopshot has another business model through its in-image advertising network. If your picture is used, you will share in the advertising revenue.

  • Creative Market

    January 24, 2021 |

    Creative Market lets you set up your own shop for selling -digital- creatives. 
    You can sell your images, but also illustrations, 3D objects, or even templates and designs.

    You can set your own price, you don’t have to go exclusive and, as it is your own shop, there is no per-product approval. Just go live with it instantly

  • iStockPhoto

    January 24, 2021 |

    As a division of Getty Images, iStock( short for iStockphoto) is one of the larger suppliers for stock photography and a great place to start if you are exploring stock photography as a side gig.

    You can sell both images as video footage. The latter will pay better, but both have great potential for passive income. After uploading your material it will remain there for years. More about iStockPhoto here

  • Shutterstock

    January 24, 2021 |

    Shutterstock focuses on Royalty-Free content, mainly on subscription-based licensing. As they were among the first implementing subscriptions they have a very solid base and a huge amount of customers, downloading image after image.

    Customers pay a flat fee that will allow them to download (buy) a certain amount of images per month.More about Shutterstock here

  • Zoonar

    January 20, 2021 |

    This German Microstock agency offers an extensive amount of self-control over prices, licences and the passing on of pictures to their contributors. They also let you link your own website to pictures loaded onto the Zoonar platform!

  • MostPhotos

    January 20, 2021 |

    With love from Stockholm. MostPhotos loves images and scenes from the real life. You can turn your environment, friends, and family into money! (Please make sure you have their consent of course) 

  • PicFair

    January 20, 2021 |

    Would you rather sell your own photos? Then PicFair provides you the means to set up your own shop, without you having to worry about licensing, shipping, etcetera.
    As the name suggests, they think fair pricing for photographers is important, You will get 100% of what you price your pics for. 

  • Ingimage

    January 20, 2021 |

    Ingimage is part of the Ingram group. They have their headquarters in London but have offices in Amsterdam and New York too.

    To become a contributor you will have to apply on the contributor page of the Ingram Group portal.

  • SignElements

    January 20, 2021 |

    Imagine your images ending up on a sign, wouldn’t that be awesome? SignElements specializes in stock content for sign makers.
    They are is part of the Ingram group. 

    To become a contributor you will have to apply on the contributor page of the Ingram Group portal.

  • Getty Images

    January 20, 2021 |

    A list of sites where you can sell your photos, illustrations, and footage can not be complete without Getty Images. 
    To join you need to download their app, contribute sample images, and after acceptance, you can start uploading.

    The best thing: you will be selling on both Getty Images as on iStock!

  • Vecteezy

    January 20, 2021 |

    Vecteezy accepts photos, vectors, and videos. To apply you will need to upload some samples of your work, which of course, will be reviewed by them.

  • Smugmug

    January 19, 2021 |

    Smugmug lets you create an online portfolio with just a few clicks. They provide you with all you need to control access to your portfolio, safe storage for your images, and-so-fort.
    They facilitate you in setting up shop from your portfolio. 

    This, however, is not a free plan, but they offer so many great features for photographers that want to focus on their photos, not managing the tech.

  • Bigstock

    January 19, 2021 |

    Bigstock is a credits-based international microstock photography website that has over 105 million images from talented photographers and illustrators all over the world.

    The signup process for contributors is straight forward. Just follow the steps they describe on their signup page.

  • 500px

    January 19, 2021 |

    If you need another example of a hobby that became big business then 500px is an excellent one. Evgeny Tchebotarev started it while finishing his business degree and now this Canada based company has millions of users.

    I could browse their pages for hours and hours. They have the most gorgeous images! Please check it yourself, even if you’re not a photographer.

  • Foap

    January 10, 2021 |

    Although the basic principles of selling photos and footage through Foap are the same as with other, classic, stock photography agencies, there are a few remarkable differences. For one thing, you work with the free app to upload your material straight to Foap. More about Foap here

  • Etsy

    January 10, 2021 |

    Etsy is a platform that is focused on selling handmade items and craft supplies. They do, however, also provide shop owners with the possibility to sell digital items.
    Therefore they offer a great opportunity to monetize your photos and illustrations by selling them as printables.More about Etsy here

  • ImageVortex

    January 3, 2021 |

    ImageVortex has a very high and competitive payout (commission) for their photographers. Add that to the fact that you can set your own price per photo and then tell me this isn’t interesting.

    ImageVortex lets you choose to receive your payment via PayPal, cheque, or a wire transfer to your bank account.

  • Can Stock Photo

    January 3, 2021 |

    Founded in 2004, Can Stock Photo is one of the oldest microstock photography agencies. Even after all this time, they are doing great with almost 20,000 images added every day.

    They offer instant downloads, credit-based, and subscription-based plans for their images and footage
    As they say themselves: Can Stock Photo was founded on the basis of offering a fair-trade alternative by paying contributors fairly and treating them with mutual respect.

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