376 Super-Useful Royalty Free, Creative Commons, and Public Domain Websites

Want some “free” resources? Here’s a massive list of Royalty Free, Creative Commons, and Public Domain websites where you can find photos, images, sounds, music, backgrounds, fonts, icons, logos and more.

When you run a blog or website it can be a little difficult to find the resources you need without paying a fortune for them.

Lucky for us, there are hundreds of Royalty Free, Creative Commons, and Public Domain websites that provide all sorts of goodies that you can use on your blog (and sometimes without a credit!).

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What do Royalty Free, Creative Commons, and Public Domain mean? Is it all free? Do I need to add a credit? Help!

As you might know, you can’t just find an image, photo, song, etc. on Google and use it on your blog like it’s your own.

Pretty much anything that has been “created” has copyright protection and using it without permission, payment and/or a credit can land you in trouble unless the creator has expressly said “Do whatever you want without a credit!“.

Let’s have a quick look at the main types of licenses we want to keep an eye out for when using different items like photos and videos on our blogs:

  • Royalty Free – This is usually where you pay a one-time fee to the owner and they grant you a license to use their copyrighted item in certain situations. You usually can’t resell it or use it as a logo, branding, etc. Most stock photo sites use some version of this, for example. Learn more.
  • Creative Commons – These are a series of licenses where an otherwise copyrighted work is made freely available to distribute under certain conditions. There are several types of CC license such as Non-Commercial and Zero which all have different ways they can and can’t be used. Learn More.
  • Public Domain – This generally refers to a resource that falls outside of copyright and intellectual property laws and doesn’t belong to any one artist but actually belongs to the public at large. Learn more.

When going through the websites mentioned in this post it’s very important to do your own research and pay attention to the type of license it is under and what restrictions that places you under.

You might need to give a credit, pay a fee, or you might have to do none of that. But make sure you check! Sometimes the rules vary from country to country and I am not a lawyer so you’ll have to read the terms as you go.

A huge list of Royalty Free, Creative Commons, and Public Domain websites

Okay, now that all of that stuff is out of the way, let’s get right in to the complete list of sites we could find broken down into sections of photos and images, backgrounds and textures, videos and motion backgrounds, music and sound effects, icons and logos, and, lastly, fonts and typography.

Photos and Images

Here’s a huge stock of images and photos available under various licenses. Some examples of how you might use them include adding them to blog posts, or using them for educational purposes – such as for creating illustrated eBooks.

Pexels // Old Book Illustrations // Gratisography // Wikimedia Commons // Unsplash // LibreShot // Dreamstime // NASA // Morguefile // Freerange // Flickr Commons // FreeStocks.org // Public Domain Pictures // Pixabay // Magdeleine // ISO Republic // Public Domain Vectors // FancyCrave // 1 Million Free Pictures // Camarama // CreativeCommons.Photos // Crow the Stone // Epicantus // FindA.Photo // Free Stock Photos // Jay Mantri // Realistic Shots // Reusable Art // Skitterphoto // Medical Heritage Library // Europeana Collection // Free Media Goo // Free Nature Stock // Free Stock Image Point // FreeImages.Pictures // FreePhotosBank // StockSnap.io // Startup Stock Photos // The British Library // The Public Domain Review // Viintage // Public Domain Archive // Pic4Learning // Photogen // ABS Free Pic // Image*After // Publicdomainfiles // ShotStash // JESHOOTS // DesignerPics.com // Everystockphoto.com // Negative Space // Death to the Stock Photo // SpaceX // Stockvault // Foodies Feed // FreeImages // Fancy Crave // FreeImages.red // From Old Books // FreePhotos.se // Pic Pac // PDPics // Picdrome // Burst // UPICM // Yale University Art Gallery // Unrestricted Stock // The U.S Department of State // Trunklog.com // BARA Art // U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Digital Visual Library // The Defense Visual Information Center // DrStockPhoto // Makerbook // Fotoscopy // FreeUse.io // Skuawk // FreeQration // US Fish and Wildlife Service Digital Library // NOAA Photo Library // A Digital Dreamer // Abstract Influence // USDA Agricultural Research Service // PolarFox // Photo Rack // stokpic // Focus Fitness // Large Photos // Iwaria // Oliur Rahman // Stocka // Shutteroo // Creative Vix // Barn Images // Snapwire Snaps // Snappy Goat // Little Visuals // Visual Hunt // Phototeria // Public C Photo // Photos-public-domain // 4 Free Photos // Clker.com // Image After // Stock.XCHNG // Yeah! Stock Photos // The Stocks // Freetems // Google LIFE // MMT // Raumrot // re:splashed // RGBStock // Paul Jarvis // Stock Up // Stockpic // Smithsonian // StockSnap.io // NOBL Web // Snapographic // TurboPhoto // PicJumbo // Pickup Image // Cupcake // Bossfight // Freely Photos // New Old Stock // SplitShire // Picography // Travel Coffee Book // Tookapic // Moveeast // Moni’s Photo // Splashbase // PicMelon // PLiXS // Glyphs.co // My Stock Photos // Slon // nappy // Soul Photos // Nomad Pictures // StyledStock // Lensicle // PixZoyd // Avopix //OneLeft Media // Duion // Topers Photos // MarblePics // DavAlign // The Famous Artists // Totally Free Images // Free Vintage Illustrations // My Public Domain Pictures // National Archives // Images in the Public Domain // Online Archive of California // Realgraphy // FreeImages.red // Pickle Jar // Street Will // Life of Pix

Backgrounds and textures

Some sites are specifically focused on providing backgrounds or textures. The patterns available on these sites are versatile, and depict surfaces of different objects and materials. You can use them for creation of graphics or 3D models.

Lost and Taken // The Pattern Library // Mayang’s Free Texture // Free Stock Textures // WebTreats // Webdesignerlab // TextureZoom // Textures.com // Photoshop.cc

Videos and Motion Backgrounds

The next set of sites that we have for you are related to videos and motion backgrounds which can be super useful for fancy header areas and making your blog or website come to life. Just make sure you watch the size as increasing your load time with a video can be annoying and detrimental to SEO rankings.

Mazwai // Pixabay // Pexels Videos // Vimeo // Motion Elements //Videezy // NASA // Life of Vids // Videvo // Coverr // Distill // Dissolve // IM Free // Flickr Creative Commons // Footage Crate // Free HD Footage // Free Loops // XStockVideo // Stock Footage for Free // Vimeo Free HD Stock Footage // Cute Stock Footage // Alex Free Stock Video // Archive.org // Pond5 // Clip Canvas // Detonation Films // Hollywood Camera Work // Ignite Motion // Open Images // orangeHD // The Tanuri Experiment // The NewsMarket // Wikimedia Commons // Fancy Footage Club // Clipcanvas // Motion Elements // Motion Background // IgniteHD

Music and sound effects

Adding music and sound effects to your videos, podcasts or other presentations can be very useful. It’s a little hard to find free stuff so take a look around these sites and see what catches your attention.

Jamendo // AudionautiX // Josh Woodward // TeknoAXE // PacDV // Music for Makers // Bensound // Incompetech // Free Soundtrack Music // Musopen // Twin Musicom // TimBeek // Our Music Box // McFarland BEATS // FXhome // Free to Use Sounds // Zapsplat // Sound Bible // The Motion Monkey // Sound Image // SoundGator // 99sounds

Icons, logos and vector images

Here’s a bunch of websites that provide free logos, clip arts and icons which you can use on your site or for creating graphics. A lot of them have specific icon-sets of objects, social media icons, animals and niche-specific content. So you can use them even in eBooks, infographics or other illustration purposes.

Smashing Magazine // Flat Icon // MrIcons // Pixeden // Vecteezy // Material Design Icons // Glyphsearch // Endless Icons // IconBug // Perfect Icons // Soft Icons // Free Clipart Now // Webweaver // Freerange Stock // Logodust // Freepik // Gravual // WPClipart // Behance // Free Vectors // Vector4Free // Web Design Freebies // Captainicon // Good Stuff No Nonsense // DeviantArt // Dribble // Best PSD Freebies // Iconfinder // GraphicBurger // Designbeep // Oxygenna // Dafont // Free Goodies for Designers // FreebiesBug // Iconmelon // PixelsMarket // GraphicsFuel // Fribly // Icojam // Blurgraphic // Public Domain Vectors // Icons Shock // CSS Author // Creative Tail // All Free Download // Ego Icons // AlienValley // Aiconica // Public Domain Clip Art // Dreamstale // DuckFiles // Open Clipart Library // Clker // Open Photo // 1001 Free Downloads // All Silhouettes // GraphicsBay // NounProject // Iconmonstr // Fusionplate // Dryicons // Glyphicons // Entypo // Endless Icons // Iconic // Icons8 // IcoMoon // Vectorish // Vector Goods // Fontello // IconArchive // Iconathon // Entypo // Pixabay // Cool Vectors // Spread // Free Vector Maps // Vector Portal // Vectors for All // 123freevectors // Vector EPS // Squid Ink // Blugraphic // Vector.me // Qvectors // Lightstock // For Designer // Vectorian // Web Design Hot // Vecto2000 // Freevectors.me // All Vectors // Vector Junky // Vector Open Stock // Logo Open Stock // Magic People // Digimadmedia // Scalablegfx // 365psd // Openclipart

Fonts and Typography

The font that you use one your blog or website is super important because it can have an effect on how easily it is to read your posts, how beautiful your site looks, and how well your brand is expressed visually. Here are a bunch of websites where you can find all sorts of fonts to use.

Smashing Magazine // Public Domain Files // Behance // Font Squirrel // 1001 Fonts // Open Font Library // Font Library // Google Fonts // Wild Type // The League of Movable Type // Font Fabric // My Fonts // All Free Download // DaFont // Artimasa // Ten by Twenty // Fontcab // Neogrey


I’d like to give a big thank you to Vishal for all his help on this post. I really hope this collection of Royalty Free, Creative Commons, and Public Domain websites has been useful to you and helps you to find some niche free stuff to use on your blogs. Please let me know if you think anything is missing from the list and I’ll make sure to add it.

Top photo © Daniel Villeneuve.

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