Topic outline

  • Introduction

    • This is a repository of OER resources for images and image editing software
    • These images are freely accessible and licenced under Creative Commons 
    • Please refer to each site's usage rights / licence /  FAQ section for exact attribution requirements
    • Each site is presented with a brief description of its features
    • As each site's search feature is different, use your best judgment to find the images needed
    • The rating shown (five stars) reflect the opinion of the editor of this Moodle site
    • Want to use a "short excerpt" from copyrighted material? Follow the Fair Dealing Guidelines
    • Read more about the different CC (Creative Commons) licence types here

    Use the navigation bar on the left to quickly access site content!

    • Image editing resources

      Use Microsoft Office
      "Photos" application

      On-line image editor sites. Just upload your image into these sites to manipulate them.

      Download these free image editor applications to your PC to manipulate photos.

      Canva"Design presentations, social media graphics and more with thousands of beautiful layouts".

      • Account set up is needed
      • Create, edit and save your creations.
      • Has free images, photos and design elements, or offers low-cost stock images
      • Examples, tutorials are available on the site

      Wordle: Create word clouds on-line. 

      Refer to these help sheets on colour theory, design elements and principles of design as you design your own works.


      FREEIMAGES logo screenshot 

      The site’s “Content licence agreement” is clear on free use and attribution.

      “The images are free as long as you stick to the rules in the Image licence Agreement. Also, in some cases you may need to notify the artists about using the images and sometimes you need to give credit to them. You can see these restrictions under the image previews, right next to the Download button”.

      • Need to use the “Free Images” option from the Browse dropdown menu  
      • iStock and Getty image search is built in, those premium images are not free!
      • Wide selection of advanced search options
      • A good selection of good quality, artistic photos, in a selection of resolutions. The suggested “similar free photos” are very intuitive.

    • pixabay

      Images copyright status is Public Domain – CC0 

      “All images and videos on Pixabay are released free of copyrights under Creative Commons CC0. You may download, modify, distribute, and use them royalty free for anything you like, even in commercial applications”. (

      • Offers different media types: photos, vector graphics, illustrations and videos
      • Wide range of advanced search options 
      • Good selection of specialty images
      • Easy to download
    • Photos for Class and Photos for Work



      • Does not require account set up
      • Searches Flickr images - no advance search features
      • Uses propriety filters and Flickr's "SafeSearch" to search for images
      • Image search depends on Flickr users tagging their uploaded images
      • Images are Creative Commons licence or public domain
      • Downloaded images automatically have citation attached
      • Photos for Work search returns images that are allowed for commercial use

    • openclipart


      • Basic search only - somewhat difficult to find exact resluts
      • Most images would be suitable for elementary grade education
      • Very large number of images of a variety of subjects
      • Images can be downloaded in different file formats and sizes
      • Images can be edited by following an "edit clipart" link
    • The Commons


      "The key goal of The Commons is to share hidden treasures from the world's public photography archives".

      • The Commons contain mostly historical photos
      • Images are from the collections of an impressive list of institutes. Check the list here.
      • Images have "no known copyright restrictions" 
    • Unsplash


      • Beautiful, high resolution, large format photographs
      • Basic search feature only - hard to find exact images
      • Collections for browsing and inspiration
      • Creative Commons Zero licencing on all images
    • clker


      • Large selection of clip art images (not photographs)
      • Images are easy to download as png files, in small - medium - large size
      • Images are also available for download in svg format
      • Edit images in clker's editor - link provided under each image

    • PEXELS


      • Quality, artistic images, in high resolution
      • Easy downloads in different sizes
      • Basic search by keywords
      • Browse by categories, popular searches or colours

    • openphoto

      “The Open Photo Project is a photo sharing platform created in 1998 by Michael Jastremski. Contributors have offered their images free of charge under terms of Creative Commons licensing”.

      • Site requires setting up a free account
      • Offers high quality, artistic photos in high resolution
      • Each image clearly states attribution requirements and provides a code for same
      • Search by keyword or browse by categories
      • Search results are grouped according to Creative Commons licences
      • Somewhat limited number of images per searches

    • freedigitalphotos


      • Site requires setting up a free user account 
      • Image download is somewhat cumbersome with accepting usage terms and entering security characters with each download
      • Search results also include stock photos (not free)
      • Basic and advanced search or browse by categories
      • Good selection of images
      • Free images are small size only: 400 pixels on larger side, 72 px/inch (screen) resolution
    • freerange


      Images are free to download, use, modify, publish and display
      Attribution suggestion: "Photos courtesy of and copyright Free Range Stock," or similar statement"

      • Site requires setting up a free user account 
      • Good quality photographs and some illustrations
      • Basic search, search by categories or follow keywords
      • Easy link to PIXLR (on-line image editor) for image editing

    • PhotoPin


      • Searches Creative Commons photos
      • Basic search only
      • Images are available for download in different sizes
      • Easy HTML codes for attribution and licence information
    • stockvault


      • Searchable by keyword or by categories
      • Free image results are sandwiched between results from Stock Photo sites - this makes searching and selecting images somewhat cumbersome
    • picjumbo


      • Not all images are free - site offers "premium" membership with more images and bulk downloads
      • Quality, artistic photographs, although limited in number and categories
      • Basic search, or search by topics
      • Images are free with suggested attribution: Photo by‘ with link to or ‘Photo by Viktor Hanacek‘ with link to my personal website
    • Pics4learning


      A curated, copyright-friendly image library that is safe and free for education.

      • Search by collections - limited number of images in the collections
      • Basic and advanced search
      • Suitable for K-12 education
    • Microsoft Office Imagery

      Follow these links to learn how to search for and insert images, clipart, pictures, photos when using Microsoft Office software (Word, PowerPoint, Publisher).

      Adding online pictures or clipart

    • Creative Commons Image Search

      This search feature gives access to other search services, such as Flickr, Google Images, Pixabay, etc.

      Make sure to follow the search results to verify that they are in fact licenced as CC.

    • Other useful resources

      Sans Francisco 
      This site offers a curated list of tools for designers. 
      Some of the resources: typography, colour palettes, iconography, presentation, collaboration

      Generate and fine tune colour palettes from uploaded images

      Share and discover colour palettes

      20 more sites to get free stock images
      More resources to find just the right photo for your project



    • Data Visualization resources
      Interactive and responsive charts and maps. Basic version is free

      Create a wide variety of charts and maps on-line, format them how you want it, save them or past HTML code to your webpage

      Works directly in your browser. Create flowcharts, diagrams, charts and many more
      Creates flowcharts, mindmaps, Venn diagrams, wireframes and save them to your Google Drive, Dropbox, OneDrive or Device