Picture Perfect: Sourcing images with impact


Need to give your Word doc some wow factor or your PowerPoint some panache, but struggling to find decent images?  Here are my favourite sources for high quality, royalty free stock imagery.

All the websites listed below provide images licensed for free personal or commercial use with no attribution required.

The only caveat is that there may be some restrictions on photos of identifiable people, trademarked products and privately owned property (not only people’s homes, but also some landmarks). Getty Images has an excellent guide to intellectual property which is worth checking out before you get started.


Pixabay is packed with well over a million public domain images making it the biggest online collection of free stock photos and illustration (plus vector graphics and a handful of videos).

It’s really easy to search for images as it allows you to filter queries by factors like media type, orientation, colour and minimum dimensions

Another useful feature is that you can choose an appropriate resolution to download once you’ve found an image.


Unsplash is a collection of “do whatever you want” photos which means exactly that!  You can download them, edit them, use them for commercial purposes…whatever you want.

There are fewer images here than you’ll find on Pixabay but there’s still over 250,000 to choose from and the quality is good.

It also features Collections – groups of photos sorted by other users into themes – which are ideal for inspiration and searching.


Pexels offers hundreds of thousands free stock photos with new high resolution photos added every day.   Photos are hand-picked from photos uploaded by their users or sourced from other free image websites.

You can search for something specific, or browse by themes including pastimes, emotions, locations and even colour.


If you’re looking for something a bit quirky, Gratisography – a collection of pictures by talented photographer and graphic designer Ryan McGuire – is perfect.

Whilst it houses a relatively small collection compared to other website, Gratisography successfully avoids dull stock photo clichés with its fun and unusual images.


If you find trawling through several image libraries too time-consuming then check out O-Dan. They provide a cross-searching service across many of the most popular free stock photo sites, presenting results in one place.

So there you have it…where to find great images.

But from experience, I know it can take time to search and find the perfect image.  That’s why image sourcing is one of the services I offer…as well as document creation which can also incorporate that element.

Get in touch if you’d like help creating picture perfect presentations.

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