Copyright Free Images To Paint

14 Websites For Finding Awesome Images Online for Free

Although I get my subject matter to paint from taking my own photos, I realize that not all of my students have access to take the photos of images they want to paint. To help you, I've found great websites that share copyright free images.  

Why is it important to use copyright free images? The answer is that it’s illegal to use photographers and artist’s copyrighted images for your paintings!  People think it’s okay to take images for reference off of Pinterest and Google, but the photographers and artists who’ve posted those images own the copyright to them.  Regarding artwork, it’s perfectly fine to copy the work of an artist after they’ve been deceased more than 70 years.  It’s not okay to see a current artists painting that you like and paint it yourself without their permission.  

The websites below have images that are 100% copyright free.  Please take the time to use these websites and bookmark your favorites.  It will be time well spent!  Please don't bring copyrighted photos to class to paint unless you have permission from the person who took the photo.  - Jill Saur

1.  Unsplash:    

2.  Digital Dreamer:

3.  Can We Image:

4.  Good Free Photos:

5.  Google Advanced:   Google Image Search (click on “Advanced Settings” then put your search word at the top of the next page.  Scroll to the bottom and choose copyright free, even commercially at the bottom.  Click search and it will go to a google page. Click on images at the top.  This sounds like a lot but it's super easy and a very rewarding search.   

6.  Gratisography:

7.  Image Base: 

8.  Morgue File:  (You must alter the image in some way to use them.)   

9.  Pd Pics:

10.  Photo Rack:  (Navigate the homepage and delve into awesome photos!)

11.  Pic Jumbo:

12.  Pickup Image:

13.  Pixabay:

14. Pexels: