16 Free Image Resources: A cheat sheet for event managers

Choosing images for promotion isn’t easy. Every business wants their website to stand out just as much as you do. Adding unique images to Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, Facebook and Google+ posts is key.

In the world of modern media, your content can get passed over for slick, flashy ads. It’s crucial that you pair your content with eye-catching images to stay competitive.

Great images are those that your audience will remember long after they see them. Great images create the theme of your event. People are visual. Promotion involves hard work, but it will be worth it when you see the results.

Breaking The Law

The copyright pathway is cloudy and full of legal jargon. But it is easy to stay legit. Stay clear of danger by assuming everything is copyrighted unless stated otherwise. This means staying clear of Google Images. This means no longer grabbing images from any random location.

Also, realize that free doesn’t always mean you can do with as you please. Learn terms you’ll see while browsing for images before downloading them:

  • Public Domain: images aren’t copyrighted and can be edited and published long term.
  • Attribution: you must give credit and create a link to the author of an image if you want to use it. Also, list the edits done and refrain from using the author as a sponsor for your work.
  • Share Alike: you share credit with the author of the original image license. This applies when you make additions to the image.
  • Non Commercial: you can’t post your image to make a profit or use it for advertising.
  • Creative Commons: a nonprofit organization where users can create and share images with a few different licenses. The licenses we use are “Attribution”.

The Images

The following sites are good places for free images free from copyright restrictions.

1. Pexels
Pexels is a great site that seems to aggregate photos from many copyright free sites.

2. Stock Snap
Another great aggregator of copyright free sites.

3. New Old Stock
For you old timers.

4. Vintage Printable

5. Pic Jumbo
A great repository with good organization.

6. Gratisography
The database is updated often and the images are well filtered.

The Fonts

Most do not realize that fonts fall under copyright protection as well. The following fonts are free to use. Be sure to pull only from the free sections.

7. Behance

8. The League of Moveable Type

9. The Lost Type

10. My Fonts

Do not mess around. If you use copyrighted fonts it leaves easily searchable code on your webpage. You will be caught.

The Icons

Icons are a great way to quickly communicate and organize information.

11. Icon Finder

12. Iconmonstr

13. The Noun Project

Be careful. A lot of these icons require payment. I use the Icon Project to come up with ideas then search for the icons elsewhere.

The Tools

To use these resources effectively you will need an editing tool. Here are a few recommended tools to help you create stunning pictures:

14. Photoshop
Most professionals use photoshop but its too powerful for what I want. Yet, it is impactful enough in the industry to make the list.

15. Canva
My goto tool that runs in your browser and is easy to use.

16. PicMonkey
Another easy-to-use photo editing tool that runs in your browser.

Moving Forward

Bookmark your favorite sites and spend time getting to know how they organize their images. Store images in a computer folder or Evernote app. These photos will be available if you need to use them later on.

Choose different font styles and install them on your computer. You can use Photoshop, Canva, or PicMonkey to create at least two templates with a background image and some text above it.

Rafiq is the founder of Crowdflow.io and is on a mission to create technology to help organizers sell out great events.