18 top stock photo libraries

Are you struggling to find images to complete your latest project? If so, these great photo libraries could be the solution to all your problems.

01. iStock

Access thousands of affordable images at iStock

iStock offers millions of affordable, unique, royalty free images and stock photos. Images can be downloaded using iStock credits, which are sold in preset packages. The site features a simple search facility as well as a 'browse by category' function, making it easy to find what you're looking for amongst the thousands of images it holds.

02. Veer

Top photo libraries

Join the community of creatives already using photo library Veer

Photo library Veer has millions of images in its archives, all for the purpose of design and creativity. The site features more royalty-free stock photos, vectors and fonts than you could ever possibly need. And not only that, Veer has a community of fellow creatives so is the perfect place for you to interact and share ideas with your peers.

03. Getty Images

Search through millions of images in the Getty Image library

Founded in 1995, Getty Images was the first company to license imagery online. Now, its library features millions of stock images and illustrations and thousands of hours of video. This online library is designed to make it easy to find the images you're looking for, with categories and an easy-to-use search function. Images are individually priced depending on the license required.

04. Fotolia

With millions of royalty free images, fotolia is sure to have what you're looking for

Fotolia is devoted to offering affordable creative imagery. Its crowdsourced library includes millions of royalty-free images, vectors, illustrations and video footage clips, created by a vast community of artists, graphic designers, and a select list of well-known agencies. All images offered on Fotolia are royalty-free, and can be used for any design project or document, with no time limits or restrictions on the number of printed copies.

05. Adobe Stock

Adobe Stock is a new kid on the block, but it's already making waves

Adobe Stock is integrated into Creative Cloud subscriptions, and this means that Adobe has put a lot of work into how the service works with its suite of design tools. On Adobe Stock you can access more than 50 million royalty-free, photos, videos, illustrations, and vector graphics, and if you want to purchase images directly in Photoshop CC, Illustrator CC, InDesign CC and more, then it could be the sevice for you.

05. RGB Stock

Top photo libraries

Access a huge number of free stock photos and graphics at RGB Stock

Need some images for your latest project but on a budget? Then RGB Stock may be able to help. This site offers a huge number of high quality free stock photos and free graphics for illustrations, wallpapers and backgrounds, all of which are free for personal and commercial use.

06. Fotosearch

With over 14 million royalty free images in its archives, you're sure to find what you're looking for at Fotosearch

If you're after a specific photo fast, head over to photo library Fotosearch. This site holds over 14,700,000 royalty free photos in its archives, so you're sure to find exactly what you're looking for here. otosearch also has a comprehensive collection of illustrations, clip art and stock videos.

07. Morguefile

Top photo libraries

Head over to Morguefile for a wealth of free, high resolution stock photos

Morguefile is another great resource for free, high resolution stock photography. The site has an easy to use keyword search tool so you can quickly find what you're looking for. Morguefile also allows you to edit photos before downloading, featuring a useful crop tool inbuilt, ensuring you get the exact image wanted.

08. Stock.XCHNG

If it's free images you're after, Stock.XCHNG is a fantastic place to start looking

If it's free images you're after, then Stock.XCHNG is a good place to start looking. With over 400,000 images covering every topic you could possibly want, this site is definitely one to bookmark. It has a simple drop down menu in order for you to select a category you're after, as well as the usual search bar. However, it does have a rather complex image licence agreement so make sure to read thoroughly first.

09. Flickr

Online sharing application Flickr features images from some of the best photographers in the world

The largest online photo management and sharing application in the world, Flickr is a brilliant resource for free images. Used by millions, including some of the world's best photographers, you're sure to find an image that fits your needs here. However, not everyone allows their photos to be used commercially so make sure you check image rights before downloading.

10. Openphoto

Image library Openphoto began back in 1998 so it now has an extensive collection of stock photos

Another site where you can download images for free, Openphoto has an extensive collection of stock photography just waiting for you to download. The simple layout makes it easy to find exactly what you're looking for, with categories organised in neat thumbnails as well as a keyword search facility.

11. Shutterstock

Find millions of inspiring images at extensive photo library Shutterstock

With over 33 million royalty-free stock photos, illustrations, vectors, and videos, Shutterstock is a global marketplace for the creative community. The site is extremely easy to navigate, with images organised into popular categories and featuring a useful keyword search tool. To download content, a subscription or image on demand package is required. Updated with more than 20,000 new images daily, you're sure to find something inspiring every time you visit this photo library.

12. Bigstock

With over 12 millions photos to choose from, you're sure to find what you need at Bigstock

International microstock photography website Bigstock is all about good design, creative inspiration and royalty-free stock imagery. And with over 17 million images to choose from, you're sure to find something here to inspire you. The previous pay-as-you-go system has now been replaced by a subscription system.

13. Freeimages

Freeimages has over 6000 quality free stock photos available in its library

Ok, so it's not the nicest website design we've ever seen and the search functions are basic, but the 6000+ free stock photos seriously redeems photo library Freeimages. There are 84 categories of quality images for you to browse through so no matter what you're looking for, you should be able to find something of use here.

14. Dreamstime

Browse through over 15 million stock images and illustrations at online photo library Dreamstime

Online photo library Dreamstime holds over 15 million royalty-free stock images and illustrations. And organised into popular categories and featuring a search tool, it's easy to find what you're looking for. You can register with the site for free, which gives you access to a selection of free images. Alternatively, you can buy and download images with a credit package or subscription.

15. Photofolio

Photofolio enables photographers to sell their work directly

Photofolio aims to make it easy for photographers to sell their work online; simply give your photo a price of up to £250 and Photofolio takes either a 10 or 15 percent cut, depending on whether you opt for a standard or pro account. If you're buying, you’re credited with a licence to use the image for 365 days, however you wish.

16. StockPhotos.io

StockPhotos.io features around 25,000 public domain or Creative Commons licensed photos

StockPhotos.io is a free stock photo sharing community, with around 25,000 high quality, high resolution public domain and Creative Commons licensed professional images. Want to use an image commercially? That's fine, as long as you give proper credit to the photographer.

17. Alamy

Alamy boasts over 45 million images and a philanthropic programme to be proud of

Alamy prides itself on doing things a bit differently. It has a strong philanthropic agenda with over £2.8 million to good causes since 2007 and a commitment to give students 100 per cent commission from the sale of their images. Which is jolly decent, but even if you're not bothered about the philanthropic angle you'll probably be keen on its library of over 45 million images and nearly 300,000 video clips. You can also download a free iPad app that's updated daily with images from its collection.

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