Here are links to some sources of FREE images and videos for your blog posts. Some of the photos on these sites are pretty spectacular.
The listed sites all have media to use restriction free and do not require attribution. However, be sure to check each site for any use restrictions and copyrights before using, as their requirements may have changed. Don’t take my word for it. FREE turns into VERY EXPENSIVE if you get into trouble for infringing on creative rights.
http://pixabay.com/ (my favorite, and usual go-to site)
http://www.gratisography.com/ (weird and quirky images, if you’re looking for that)
We create a lot of content for our client’s websites . . . community pages, buyer and seller resources, etc. We also blog and post to social media accounts for several of our clients. So, it is an important part of our business to be able to find good images to use royalty-free for a small cost, and even for free.
If you’re blogging, remember that “a picture’s worth 1,000 words” and use images in all your blog posts. One image is good for short posts, and for longer posts, you may want to break up the text with additional images.
Very important . . . you are responsible for the lawful use of any images you find online. Be certain that you are not violating the specific copyright laws associated with an image.
Creative Commons Image Databases
The Creative Commons Copyright License allows images to be reused. The image is still owned by the creator, but may be freely reused without the creator’s permission. In most cases a simple attribution (photo by artist name and a link to their website or to the page where the image resides) is all that is required for it’s lawful use.
These are very useful for photos of specific communities that you can’t find on other sites. If you’re writing a post or creating content for specific community pages, these sites are your best bet (other than taking the photos yourself).
Here are the Creative Commons image databases that we use the most:
Public Domain Images
Images in the public domain either had no copyright, the copyright expired, or the image was released to the public domain by the author. Generally, you are free to use these photos without any attribution. Again, be sure before you use. Some of these sites have a variety of commercial and editorial licenses, including public domain, creative commons, and custom agreements. Although the images are free to download and use, you must abide by the Image License and Usage Terms listed on the photo download page.
Here is a list of some public domain image sources. Some are more user-friendly than others:
Low Cost Stock Images
Of course, there are always stock image sites that offer low cost images. These sites are commercial, so are generally easier to navigate and provide photos from extra-small to extra-large sizes for your various needs. For blog posts, you can usually use the least expensive small or extra small sizes. Here is a list of some of the stock photo sites that we use: