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Digital Images Collections Guide
PAY ATTENTION to the creative common’s license that’s posted with the photo. You may be required to link back to the original item or you may only be allowed to use it in certain circumstances. Not all Creative Common Licenses are alike. And there are many photos on Flickr that have all rights reserved by the artist/photographer.
Public Domain Sherpa
This page lists resources for high-quality public domain photographs. Some of the resources here are overlapped with suggested resources in Flickr & the Digital Images Collections Guide.
Museum Open Repositories
Collection includes paintings, jewelry, sculpture, textiles, pottery, artifacts, mask, clothing, furniture, coins
Cleveland Museum of Art
30,000 public- domain artworks from the CMA’s world-renowned collection of art are released to the public domain for commercial and non-commercial use under CC0 licenses. Tip: Use the Open Access checkbox when searching, and check for the CC0 icons beneath an image to verify its availability.
The Met - The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Public Domain Artwork
This link specifically shows images from the Met's collection that are free of copyright restrictions. In addition to art, the collection also includes photographs, pottery, albums, baseball cards, jewelry, embroidery, musical instruments. Look for works marked "Public Domain" or "CC0" (Creative Commons Zero). According to the museum website, "you are welcome to use images identified by a CC0 icon for any purpose, including commercial and noncommercial use, free of charge and without requiring permission from the Museum."
National Gallery of Art
From website: NGA Images is a repository of digital images of the collections of the National Gallery of Art. On this website you can search, browse, share, and download images.
National Museum of Denmark
From the Announcement:
As a pilot, 159 highlights from our collections are available for free download. The art works are also featured in the Google Art Project.
Paris Musees - CC0 Royalty-Free Image Results
The Paris Musées recently released more than 100,000 works under Creative Commons Zero (CCØ), putting the works into the public domain.
Thousands of high-quality images of artworks from the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, available to download, modify, and use copyright-free.
Smithsonian Open Access
"Welcome to Smithsonian Open Access, where you can download, share, and reuse millions of the Smithsonian’s images—right now, without asking. With new platforms and tools, you have easier access to nearly 3 million 2D and 3D digital items from our collections—with many more to come. This includes images and data from across the Smithsonian’s 19 museums, nine research centers, libraries, archives, and the National Zoo."
Victoria and Albert Museum
Collections of art, sculpture,metalwork, photographs, and textiles
The copyright owner has exclusive rights to control reproduction, distribution, performance, & display of the work, and the preparation of derivative works.
Other Free Image Collections
You are responsible for reading the terms of service and the copyright information provided by each and every website to ensure you are within legal limits to use the photos. In general, these photos are available for Fair Use, but you'll need to read their terms to discover whether or not you need to cite them and how to cite them.
Bigfoto.com is a repository of photos whose main categories include America, Asia, Europe, Africa, and Pacific.
Compfight is an image search engine tailored to efficiently locate images for blogs, comps, inspiration, and research. [On the left side search bar, once you have results, check the box that says "Creative Commons" to search for images you can use without breaking copyright--but you still have to cite the image information!]
FreeImages.co.uk has more than 2,500 stock photos.
Free Media Goo
This includes images, audio, texture, & flash.
From Old Books
Scanned Images, Engravings and Pictures From Old Books
The Gender Spectrum Collection
The Gender Spectrum Collection is a stock photo library featuring images of trans and non-binary models that go beyond the clichés. This collection aims to help media better represent members of these communities as people not necessarily defined by their gender identities—people with careers, relationships, talents, passions, and home lives. Images are licensed CC-BY-NC-ND.
Free high-resolution photographs, free of copyright restrictions.
"Free images for your inspiration, reference and use in your creative work, be it commercial or not!" (from morgueFiles)
Beautiful, high-res photos of black and brown people. For free. (Images licensed CC0.)
Over 100,000 completely free images on the site, with more added daily.
Public Domain Images
"Public domain images, royalty free stock photos, copyright friendly free images. Not copyrighted, no rights reserved. All pictures on this site are explicitly placed in the public domain, free for any personal or commercial use." (from Public Domain Images)
The Public Domain Project
"Download thousands of historic media files for your creative projects.
Completely free & made available by Pond5." Images, audio, video, and more.
"Veezzle is a free stock photo search engine, we are indexing free photos from big communities such as SXC, RGBStock, StockVault ..." (from Veezzle.com)
Women of color in tech photos. Images licensed CC-BY.