On this page you will find information about reusing visual material and searching collections of copyright-free images.
You may only reuse visual material if the following conditions are met:
- The material is copyright-free. This is material from the so-called public domain: usually very old material (rule of thumb: older than 150 years), material published by government bodies or material with a so-called CC-0 waiver.
- An open Creative Commons licence is applied to the work, in which the copyright holder has given permission for reuse. Look for abbreviations such as CC-BY, CC-BY-SA, CC-BY-NC of CC-BY-ND.
- You have asked and been given permission from the copyright holder.
- You are using the right to quote. Even copyrighted material without explicit permission for reuse may be included in your work, for instance when discussing an image, but the image should not be included for embellishment purposes only. It must be relevant to the work you are creating.
When including visual material, always state the source.
Use of visual material with CC licence
Please observe the conditions of the Creative Commons licences if you use such licensed material. The abbreviatons explained:
- BY (attribution): you must state the name of the maker, link to the original and link to the licence (so to one of the six from the overview)
- SA (share alike): adaptations must be shared under the same terms
- NC (non-commercial): your work may not serve a commercial goal
- ND (no derivatives): you may not change the included work, with the exception of adapting the size or the format
Collections of open licenced images
Are you looking for visual material under licences that permit reuse or public domain images? Have a look at the list of sources below. Make sure to always check the specific licence applied to the work you want to reuse.
- Creative Commons Search
- Flickr (use the licence filter)
- Free Digital Photos
- Free Images.com
- Google Image search (use the usage rights filter)
- Metropolitan Museum of Art
- Open Clipart Library
- Public Domain Pictures
- Wikimedia Commons