Stock photos are very much on our minds here at Modern Parlance lately. To be honest, stock photos are almost always on my mind but then I need them for so many different things. But ModParlPhotos has been in stock photo mode lately too. I put that down to being busier with the camera than ever.
Last year, I posted a list of some of my favourite places to get high-quality stock photos free for personal or commercial use. With all the stock photo activity going on here, it won’t shock you to know I’ve found some new sources. When I put up the original list, I said cost was what sent people hunting for free or cheaper sources of stock photography. That that’s still true but there’s another reason, one that’s become a bigger issue for me as time has gone on — lack of choice.
No, I’m not nuts. I know there are more stock sites than ever and the big boys are just getting bigger but:
- more and more. I find same pictures on multiple sites. There’s a particular coffee cup, for example, following me from rf123 to dreamstime, bigstock to canstock, shutterstock to deposit and back again.
- often the shots on the major sites (which admittedly you may not find everywhere else) can be … predictable. Technically very good, of course, but safe, cookie cutter … boring.
So I turn to the free stock sites for pictures with a bit of a difference; for pictures that don’t scream STOCK SHOT or feel like they happened at some rigidly controlled photoshoot. That’s is what I was hunting for when I came across the sites I am sharing here today. So, what can I add to the list from ‘Searching Out Stock Photos?’ All the sites below, providing free high-resolution photos that you can use with no restrictions. No purchase, permission, or attribution* required.
Searching Out Stock Photos, the Sequel
Free Range Stock (from their site) “Images on the site are either shot by Freerange Stock, drawn from Freerange archives, or contributed by a talented community of photographers. Freerange is an advertising revenue supported photographic community – photographers get paid when users click on the ads that appear next to their submissions.” Learn more about them.
Skitterphoto (from their site) “Skitterphoto was launched in 2014 by amateur photographers with day jobs from Groningen and Drenthe in The Netherlands. We decided to let our pictures go and publish them online on our own website.” Learn more about them.
Oh and in case you wanted them all in once place, here are the sites from the original post.
When I find new sites or other useful bits and bobs, you will be the first to know.
* A note on attribution. I am VERY much in favour of giving credit to those who make and create. Whenever and where ever possible within a project, site or piece, I will credit until I am blue in the face. The reason I often look for the freedom from attribution with free stock photos (especially on client projects) is that sometimes design restrictions or the nature of the project itself does not leave ‘space’ for attribution. And wrangling with clients who have fallen for a placeholder image that work with their design is one of my least favourite things.