Royalty free images for bloggers

Find Quality Royalty Free Images For Bloggers… Tool

While looking for royalty free images for bloggers for a different website I run, I found the neatest tool.  PhotoPin.

PhotoPin uses the Flickr API and searches creative commons photos to use for your blog. 

Obviously I am no lawyer and copyright law gets a bit confusing, so I can not be responsible for any advice given on this subject.  However, I will try to break it down and show you why this tool helps to keep us legal.

Royalty Free

Royalty-free, or RF, refers to the right to use copyrighted material or intellectual property without the need to pay royalties or license fees for each use or per volume sold, or some time period of use or sales. ~

The reason that the images are Royalty Free is because of a group out of California that came up with a way to “license” images that the artists could choose to participate in if they so wish.  Called the Creative Commons.

Creative Commons

The organization has released several copyright-licenses known as Creative Commons licenses free of charge to the public. These licenses allow creators to communicate which rights they reserve, and which rights they waive for the benefit of recipients or other creators. ~

Types of Creative Commons Licenses I would use:

    • No Rights Reserved (CC0) – Releasing all rights
    • Attribution (CC BY) –  Only Attribution needed
    • Attribution No Derivatives (CC BY-ND) – Attribution and you can not change or altar the image in any way
    • Attribution Non-Commercial (CC BY-NC) – Attribution and you can not use it commercially
    • Attribution Non-Commercial No Derivatives (CC BY-NC-ND) – Attribution, you can not use commercially, and you can not change or alter the image in any way

There is no such thing as a free lunch.  Royalty Free using the creative commons is not REALLY Free.  It is true that if you use the images you are not required to pay money, you are required to pay Attribution.


Attribution is basically the act of giving credit to the original artist on the medium that the art is used.  There is no exact way to do this.  (Confused yet?)  However, it is generally expected you do the following:

  • Include any copyright notices (if applicable).
  • Cite the author’s name, screen name, or user ID
  • Cite the work’s title or name (if applicable).
  • Cite the specific CC license the work is under.
  • Mention if the work is a derivative work or adaptation

Again, there is no hard and fast rule for Attribution, but best practice is to mention the artist with a link to the original work. 

Royalty Free Images For Bloggers Tool

With this tool you can basically forget all of the above.  PhotoPin provides the image from Flick’r creative commons section and provides the attribution.  All we need to do is download and copy and paste.

PhotoPin uses the Flick’R API to be able to search the Creative Common’s licensed images.  After doing a couple searches I was able to quickly find a huge assortment of quality images.  Below are a sampling of a search for Seattle:

Royalty Free images of Seattle

Everybody needs to get paid and PhotoPin is no exception.  The top section of images the search results are not royalty free.  They are linked to iStockPhoto and are pay to use.

Once you find the royalty free images for bloggers section and find a quality image that you would like to use, just click on the image.  You are able to view the original image and double check the Creative Common License.  You can download the image, usually in many different sizes.

After I download the image I often like to give it a border, or add some text, or maybe tweak the size, etc.  I use Pixlr a Free Image Editor.

And they provide an Attribution link that all you need to do is copy and paste onto your blog.

Royalty Free Images Download and Attribution

 Remember that the Attribution credit is HTML.  That means you need to paste it into your HTML editor on your blog. 


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By |2013-04-18T11:40:27+00:00April 18th, 2013|

About the Author:

Jason Fox - Real Estate Marketing Business: We build WordPress Real Estate Websites with IDX Me: #GoHawks, #BringBackTheSonics, #MaybeNextYearMariners, #ILoveMyKids #SeattleSunLover #SeattleWaterLover #BFF Blog: Focuses on Wordpress Websites, Content Management, SEO Services, SEM Campaigns, Social Media Marketing, Email Marketing, Beautiful Design, IDX, and more.

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