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How to get free Images using Google Images


13th May 2014

1st January 1970

How to get Free Images for your Website Using Google Image Search

First of all, ‘Google Images’ are not owned by Google. They are not free images for us to use as we like. Google Images is simply a way to search for images on Google.

However, we can use Google Image Search to find royalty free images for use - for free!

Note: If you just take any images you find from Google Images, there's a reasonable chance you are stealing an image that you don't have copyright to use. At best, that's immoral. At worst, you can expect a solicitor’s letter along with an invoice.

  1. Go to Google Images

    . . . Or just go to Google, do your search and then click ‘Images’.

  2. Click on ‘Search tools’

    Click on SEARCH TOOLS
  3. Click on ‘Usage Rights’

  4. Click on ‘Labeled for reuse with modification’


    ‘Labeled for reuse with modification’ is better than ‘Labeled for reuse’ because the ‘with modification’ bit means that you can edit the picture in any way you want, like cropping or adding text. However sometimes ‘Labeled for reuse’ might be enough for you.

    The idea is that, we are now searching for images taken by professionals and amateurs, who are kind enough to allow us to use their images on our website, for free!

    You’re not finished yet!

  5. Check the actual page for usage rights.

    Google may not have it right. In fact, quite often, they don't. It's not enough just to take any image you find. Sometimes you can only use if you provide a link or mention the photographer/artist.

    For example, if we look at the picture that has loads of bananas on the shelves - then when we click on that page we can see it's on Wikipedia. This bit is going to differ depending on the site you are on. So, in this case, we see:

    Wikipedia image usage rights

    So this means that we are allowed to use and edit this image and we have to credit the source, which, in this case is Steve Hopson, www.stevehopson.com.

  6. Save the Image to your Computer

    There might be a download button to download a higher-resolution version of the picture - otherwise a right-click + save will do the trick!

As usual, any questions, - just ask below, or use the Social Media channels!
Dorcas RĂ©amonn

Hi, I'm Dorcas. I make websites. I lecture in Digital Marketing and related stuff in the UCD Smurfit School, and also work with the UCD Innovation Academy. I love education, learning and all things creative, which could cover anything from coding to filmography to dancing! I take photos (personal Insta @dorcasz). I do consultancy. I do talks. I've written popular books on WordPress (available here and and here. Visit my personal site here.

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