Find free to use Creative Commons images with Photo Pin


Humans are visual animals; which is why so many people (bloggers, artists, designers, advertising-types, etc) are always looking for images to illustrate our articles and ideas.

So it’s a good thing that there are numerous images available under the Creative Commons (CC) license, which anyone can use more or less freely based on some stipulations, most notably to acknowledge use with a link.

If you are looking for CC images then check out free web service Photo Pin, which performs keyword searches for CC images from Flickr.

Photo Pin screenshot2

What you need to know:

  • Searches Flickr: by keyword. The site is otherwise unaffiliated with Flickr.
  • ‘Premium’ and CC images: the so-called premium images are PAID images that are not CC. Ignore them.
  • Filters: on the left sidebar, include commercial/non-commercial, and sorting method (by relevance, recent, and ‘interestingess’).
  • Provides the link you need to use: to acknowledge the original author. Which is quite convenient (see screenshot below).
  • Download different sizes: links for all of the available downloadable sizes are displayed in one place (see screenshot below).

Photo Pin screenshot3

The verdict: a very nice service. It provides a very nice user experience, and I like that it gives the URL to link back to and the multiple downloadable sizes in one place.

But I recently reviewed a software that does pretty much the same thing (CCFinder), and the wish list I had with that one is pretty much the same here, most notably to have support for more CC image sources than just Flickr, which would go a long way towards justifying using a separate CC image search engine, as users can otherwise simply use Flickr search to find them.

Photo Pin could also use more filters, namely by image size, which is very important, and perhaps also by color, which I’ve never had a use for myself but apparently a lot of designer types do.

[Thanks go to user Panzer for the tip about this service].

Visit Photo Pin.