happy little biz

Good, free stock photography?

Today is a bit of a departure from my usual business and marketing posts. Instead, I’m answering a question I commonly get from my clients:

Where do I find images to use on my website or social media posts that are good quality and not super cheesy?

As a designer I use a ton of photos in my work. Some of them I take myself, but the vast majority I’ve grabbed from a variety of free or super low cost resources. Let me share some of my favourites with you!

A quick note about photo licensing: All the resources I’m sharing with you allow for their photos to be used on websites, blog posts and social media. However, do note that some of them have a few restrictions, such as if you're going to print a photo many times, or use it in a logo. If you have any doubts, please check the license agreement (which I’ve linked for you below, because I’m nice like that. 😉 )


Stocksnap is my favourite place to get free photos. High quality, beautiful photos of people, places and things.You can search by keyword or just browse the photos by date, popularity or just see what’s new and fun. Stocksnap license details over here.

Pixabay is another great resource for photos. For you health, wellness and fitness folks, there are lots of good photos in those categories to choose from! In particular, for the massage therapists reading, there are some good, non-cheesy, realistic photos of massage therapy (tip: try searching for both massage and massage therapy to find photos). Here's the Pixabay FAQ, which talks about how photos can be used.

The folks from Fancycrave put together free photo packs from time-to-time. They’re always full of beautiful shots! I particularly love the ‘Emotional People Photo Pack’, but do check them all out. License agreement listed here.

Death to the Stock Photo has both a paid and free resource. Each month they release a photo pack with around ten free photos for use wherever you like. Their photos are always beautiful and artistic. Some might not really fit what you need - for example, they’ve done photo packs at coffee shops, restaurants and on the theme of ‘tactile’. Other photo packs are more general, showing landscapes, work spaces and people. Worth a look if you need photos. License details in plain English here.

Special mention:

Canva: this is a fantastic resource for creating graphics to use on social media, your blog, or even on your website. They have tons of templates to choose from, and incorporate a large selection of fonts and free stock photos.

Low cost:

Creative Market has low cost, beautiful photos. Creative Market also has various graphics and templates for sale, so if you’re looking for something along those lines, check it out. License details are found on the page when previewing or purchasing an item (so check that out so you know what you’re buying).

Stocksy has highly curated, reasonably priced photos. Part of what I like about stocksy is the diversity shown in their photos. They’re also based in Canada! A quick note about pricing: they price based on the size of the photo you want. Unless you plan on printing a photo, the small or medium size should do the trick. Info about licensing options here. Read more about Stocksy here.

Hope this has been a useful post for you all, and that it helps you make your online presence more beautiful!

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