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An overview of free image databases

The quick and easy way to your perfect photo

Author
Portrait von Cornelia Maier. | © punkt & komma
Cornelia Maier
Head of content marketing

How to find the best images for your website

The internet is full of images. There are probably more of them than there are fish in the sea. And that’s basically a good thing. After all, what would blog posts and websites be without cool images? However, there’s a problem: You can’t just use any old photo and simply copy it from the web! Unless you want to get into trouble with the image owners … The solution: royalty-free image databases! We scoured the web for you and proudly present our stock image favourites – uncomplicated, free of cost and of high quality!

Unsplash

the minimalist one
Following the principle “do whatever you want“, Unsplash adds ten new images by different photographers every ten days. No need for words, the spotlight is solely on the images – simple and impressive.

Pexels

the universal one
Pexels offers more than 10,000 images from all areas of life. Thanks to the search functionality and different categories, it’s easy to find just what you’re looking for – without any restrictions of use or mandatory photo credits.

Stocksnap

the uncomplicated one
It’s quick and easy to find your perfect photo on Stocksnap. There’s lots of choice and image quality is generally high. As a particularly convenient feature, the photos can be sorted by different criteria (for instance, by relevancy). No photo credits required.

Pixabay

the comprehensive one
With more than 630,000 images, Pixabay is hard to beat in terms of choice. Not all of the available images are really high quality, but as a bonus the site also offers free clip art and videos. You can search by category and keywords and filter your results (for instance, by size or colour).

Gratisography

the unique one
Gratisography offers unique and original images, all taken by the website founder himself. You get the feeling that every image was taken with great care and love. That’s why you should take the time to mention the photo credits – even if you don’t have to.
Extra tip

Different types of usage rights

To be on the safe side, we recommend checking the legal terms of the image database you would like to use. As a little help, we have compiled a short glossary for you:
  • Creative Commons License (CC): Creative Commons is an organisation that offers default licence agreements – free but under certain conditions, for instance the obligatory mentioning of photo credits. The abbreviation CC0 means that the creator waives all his copyrights of a certain image.
  • Copyright: Anyone who takes a picture also holds the copyright.
  • Right to use: The creator also holds the right to use and can decide who else is allowed to use his or her images.
  • License: A license means to waive your usage rights, mostly against a fee.
  • Royalty-free (public domain): Unrestricted use for private and commercial usage. Keep in mind: Royalty-free does NOT automatically mean free of cost!

You have found your perfect picture? Great, then you should share it with your target group! You work with Instagram a lot in your content marketing? Even better! Find out with punkt & komma how to use THE social photo platform for tourism!
 

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