Four Image Sources That Are (Almost) Free- 2023

Hale Pringle 4/14/23 V2

Funnel with various image sites shown as iconsImage sources have been useful to me as I write Facebook Posts, LinkedIn posts, blog posts, PowerPoint presentations, emails, Landing Pages, and on and on. Over the years I have watched the “good sources” change and change again. I listed my favorite image sources in a short eBook when I was creating Print-on-demand shirts and mugs. I don’t think any of the sources listed there are as good as they were then.


There is ALWAYS an opportunity out there!


The FOUR Images Sources Covered Here

The original title was TWO Image Sources, but I found a new one and remembered one that I should have covered. Here are the four:

  • CANVA – an online image editing tool with a massive catalog of elements (like stop signs, balloon. fancy Fonts as well as free Stock Images.) The key here is how to get them onto a transparent background, cropped downloaded.
  • – a large collection of clipart and photos designed to be used in presentations and marketing material. The key to this one is figuring out how to actually download the images. There are there to be downloaded, but there are so many ads with large DOWNLOAD and START DOWNLOad buttons that it is difficult to find the actual button or link that does the job. Note: the keywording of the images is poor, so there are times when you need to download an images and then manually look at the “Similar Images” that are listed after the download. You need to delete the current tab and look through the one that had the image right before the download.
  • – Basically the same as, except that the actual download is hard to find.
  • – There are a lot of artists who create bundles of images (like Christmas themed items) and sell them for two or three dollars.

My Image Editing Tools

Just to keep things straight, I mostly work with graphic images or photos that I turn into memes by placing words on them. I use Photoshop Elements (what you might call Photoshop Lite). It has done everything that I need for years. I also use a lot these days, but it doesn’t allow me to erase things or chop pieces off of an existing image and move it somewhere else.

Today we want image sources that are brighter and have more special effects and elements like lightning bolts and WOWs. I will note that the good image sources were purchased or contracted by commercial stock image companies and have become front ends for them to sell images. The images they left on the free sites are: “almost good enough” or have a side that is chopped off so that they look funny if you drop them someplace where they stand alone. There were also a few commercial sites that were less expensive and they have doubled or tripled the number of credits needed to purchase an image.


That’s enough history, let’s look at the four image sources I use now. It started as two, but spotted a new one and remembered one I should have mentioned.

I’m actually using three tools here. I really like SCREENPRESSO as a screen capture program. It comes with a great editor that lets you draw colored arrows to point to things, number them quickly, blur areas, highlight areas, circle areas, add text, and a lot more. One of its most recent features is that you can ask it to turn an image into text (OCR) if you screen capture some text on your screen. I wrote a post on it a few years ago. I went over and updated that post. I was amazed at the number of features that I have been ignoring as they do auto-updates to my version. It is obvious that this tool is being used as a mark-up tool for various major projects. That is great because we get a very powerful program for free or pennies for the pro version. You can see that article here: Using Sreenpresso

 Using Screenpresso to Make and Edit a Screen Captures

CANVA – an Image Creator With Tons of Free Stock Images and Elements (Taken From a Dozen Image Sources.)

All of the images in Canva are free for commercial and non-commercial use. The commercial use means I could put the image on a shirt and sell it. Using them in a blog post of a Facebook post is a long way from commercial use.

I said ALMOST free in the title of this post. Canva is $12.95 a month for me it is well worth it.

Step 1 – Add a New Page

Step 2- Make sure the background is set to white.

Step 3 – Find the image or element you want and drop it onto the page.

Step 4 – Crop the page or expand the image so there is not a lot of transparent image around your element. Having several transparent areas overlapping each other makes it hard to work with several images. That transparent area also takes up space in a Word Document and in many other places. You almost never want a lot of empty space around your image.

Step 5- Download the image. Be sure to check the box that turns the transp[arent background on transparent. It will default to a png file which is what you want. Jpeg files will not support transparency.

you also need to pick just the page you want to download. Otherwise, you will get a zip file of all the pages and you will need to unzip it. I’m not going to show these steps, but here they are”

  1. Click on the big SHARE button

2. Click on DOWNLOAD in the window that pops up.

3. Check the box beside Transparency

4. Open the dropdown where it says Pages (xx) if you have more than one page.

6. Click the blue check box beside the words ALL Page. That will turn off all the checkboxes. Then click the next box down which is labeled Current page. Click the DONE button to finish selecting your page

7. Click the download button.

8. I have my Windows options set to ask where I want the file. That means I need to navigate to the folder I want, I also rename the file. It will have the name of the whole set of pages. Your file will either be in your DOWNLOADS folder or your Pictures Folder. (If you do multiple pages, you will get the name of the project, then the name of the project (1), then …(2) etc.

Screenshots of the Steps to Get an Image from

Step 1 – Add a New Page. You probably know this if you use Canva at all.

An example from one of my Image sources (Canva)

In Canva you can have several pages in one file. At the bottom of the last page is this “add Page” link.

Step 2 – Make sure the background is white

This is a page with a light blue background. We need it to be white. Here are the steps:

  1. Click on Backgrounds in the left side panel (Way down near the bottom of left of the screen.
  2. The top row in the middle column will show a few basic colors. Pick the leftmost one and you will open up all the colors.
  3. Click on a white one.

Screenshots of the Steps to Make the Background of Your Image White.

That was the background tab. I click on Background on the left side panel.

Here is one that I am sure is pure white/

I clicked on the color white and my page background turned white.

Find the Image You Want and Click On It.

That will move the image into the page.

Unless your image is going to cover most of the page, we really need to crop it. CANVA, Photoshop Elements, and a number of other tool use layers where you can place elements on top of each other and edit, shrink, or expand them and move them around. It is hard to get to click on the various items if some of them have an invisible area above the element you want to click on. Imagine 10 small things you needed to touch up and they are all on separate full-sized panes of clear glass. You would be pawing through the glass all the time trying to find which pane had the small thing you wanted to work on next.


There are several articles and videos on this on Google and YouTube. Here are the steps I use (when I’m not going to Photoshop Elements next.)

  1. Double-click on the image. Note that some circles and other things look like images, but Canva treats them as text since they are editable.
  2. That should make the top of Canva say CROP and the middle column change so that it has some crop options in it. The options we usually use are: a) set the corners where they suit you. b) Canva lets you click an area, but Canva makes sure it has the ratio that most platforms like for images placed in posts. , and c) Canva lets you put a square box where you want it.
  3. Click the CROP Button to complete the process..

Screenshots of Cropping an Image. 

  1. Here is a page with a Palm Tree on it. I put the second one there just to show that we were going to crop one image ad the second one would be part of what was chopped off.

I’m going to double-click one of the images. That will cause the CROP command to appear at the top of the screen.’

#1- The Crop Button
#2 – The options. I’m going to use the one on the left. It is slightly grey showing that it has been selected.

I will place the box on my page and drag the edges and corners until it surrounds the area I want to keep.

Now I’m going to click the CROP button.

That is what is left. Now how do we tell if the white area is transparent or white?

I stuck it into Photoshop Elements and put a layer of solid red behind it. If it was white, I would not be able to see the red. I also used my erase tool. If there was a transparent lay in front of the red layer, the erase too would not work. It would be working on the transparent layer {like a pane of glass.).

As you can tell, the erase tool was able to erase the red everywhere it was used. The

I also duplicated the image and clicked on both of them. Neither one has a transparent layer covering a large part of the screen since I could get to each of the images easily.

That’s it for getting images from CANVA.’

Image Sources: My Number Two is NicePNG.COM.

This site has lots of nice tools for making bigger images. It has a blank banner, a computer screen, and a lot more. It also has some nice smiley faces and other things to spice up a blog post or a Facebook post.

Note: Keep your eyes open. Some of the images may be copyrighted. Don’t use the Mickey Mouse Images or the Pepsi Images or any other image that represent major brands. As I understand the law, you can freely use those images to write a review or to talk about something related to the company/image. you cannot put them on a product that you sell. Use your own discretion, I am not claiming to be an authority and cannot give you legal advice about … well about anything.

There are lots of ads on the site. I’m okay with that since if they can’t make money the site will go away.

Rule #1 for free images or free software sites these days is to ignore any green DOWNLOAD, START, or BEGIN HERE buttons.

Read the fine print (which isn’t always there) and you will find that the button is for WinZip.
I’m very tempted to make a Rule #2 that says to look at Rule #1, but that is more than a little cliche by now. I still want to do it because the smart guys at these sites work hard to get you to click on an ad.

#1 – The site is NICEPNG.COM
#2 – Their logo
#3 – One of their ads. You can’t X out of it, just scroll down.

You will see their Search Box’ If you go down a little further, you will see categories. I clicked on ALL PNG, just to see what was there.

If you continue scrolling down you will see some numbers that represent the pages of images. Click on the NEXT button and you will see the next page of PNG files.

The next instructions are the same for both the search box or just browsing the images/

Downloading Images from Nicepng – Obe of the Useful Image sources

When you see an image you want, click on it.

Before we leave this first image, let’s take a closer look.

An example of an image being downloaded from one of the two image sources covered in this ppst.

Before we leave the original image, let’s take a closer look.

#1 – when you hover the mouse over the image, you see a download icon and the letters PNG to tell you that you will download the file as a .png file. This is good since any transparency will be lost if they download as a .jpg and a couple of the new web file types are hard to deal with without special tools.

#2 – There is a small Download icon below the image too.

You would think that these would start a download. Nope! You have to get past all the DOWNLOAD buttons and START buttons and BEGIN HERE Buttons. Most of the Image Sources that have been around for a while are suffering from this trend to look like a minefield. The more severe cases have been purchased by a stock image company. They would love to see all image sources that require payment for images, even those that are public domain.

I’m going to click on the scooter as a demo.

You will see this pop-up when you hover the mouse over the image and see the grey area popup, click on the image again.

You hover the mouse over the image. You are looking for the grey box in the middle with a magnifying glass in the middle.

Click on that image.

-The next page will give you three download buttons. Remember Rule @haleyes

Traps that are common on today's image sources.


Scroll down some more. past all that computer code meant to tell you that you are in the wrong place.


The actual download command for nicepng, one of the two image sources being covered here.

That is the one; Once you know where it is, things go smoothly.

Depending on how your PC is set up, you may need to choose where the image should go (My browser is set that way). You also may want to rename the image so that the name contains the keyword that you thought of when you saw it.

Scroll down and you will see some code. Below that is the blue link that says Free Download. We have passed at least eight DOWNLOAD buttons on our way here.

An example page of free files from one of the image sources being covered here:

It is often worth scrolling up and taking a look at the “Similar items.” If it interests you, some of the others might do better or also be worth also having.

Finishing the Download

Up in the list of tabs that are open in your browser, you will see that you have several tabs open for

Close them all, except the first one. The one you had open originally.

Click the BACK A PAGE button in your browser and you will be back to where you started this process.

If you are scrolling through the items, you will see a list of pages, 1, 2, 3,4,55,6…Next.

Keep pressing the Next button to look at page after page of useful PNG files.

Browsing the Files Where You Left Off.

If you like collecting these tools, you may browse through `0 or 20 pages worth and come back later to look at some more. This particular set of buttons does not have a way to jump straight to a page, but that isn’t a problem with this site. Look up at the URL and you will see something like this:

NicePng is one for the four images sources being covered here.  THis image shows where the NEXT PAGE image is in NicePng

Replace the number you see with the number you want and press ENTER. You will jump to that page.

Another Example

I did a search for “Counting Fingers” and ran into an interesting tidbit. A lot of the world uses the thumb when they show two or more finders. In the US, e leave the thumb closed until it is the last to be opened. The two examples in the next screenshot show the difference, just because the artists who created them thought that “This is the way it is done.”

Image from -one of the four image sources covered here. It show how Americans hold up 2 fingers to indicate two and europeans hold up their thumb and forefinger.

This screenshot shows that there are “Similar Items” after you search.

A thumbnail image of a page of items you can download.from NicePng is one for the four images sources being covered here

There you have it. A couple of image sources that are useful in 2023. and are still decent free image sources, but Canva beats them both and NicePng has a lot of banners, frames, stars, thumbs up and down, Social Media icons, and other useful items for writing Facebooks posts or Blog Post.

Bonus – Here is Another Free Image Source

this site is It also focuses on images that can be useful in various kinds of text copy online.

Step 1. Open the site and search using a keyword.

Step 2 – Click on an image you would like to have on your local drive and click on it. It will become large and centered on the page.

Image of car from -one of the four image sources covered here.

Scroll down and you will see the wide, thin button that says “Download the…’

Once you have clicked on the button below an image you like, one of two things will happen.

  • The image will download (I have my Windows PC set to ask where I want the image to go. The default is to drop it in your Downloads folder.) This option does not happen unless you have carried out the other option at least once.
  • The other option will show you this screen and requires you to go through a CAPTCHA process. .


Image from PngWing showing how to download images.  PngWing is one for the four images sources being covered here

#1 – The same image you saw before, but smaller.

#2 – THE REAL SIGNAL: The dots pulse one after another so they catch your attention.

#3 – When you see the “moving dots”, click on the blue button below the dots.

You will see an image that looks like this”

Image from -one of the four image sources covered here.

I circled the key element here. This is the whole purse of adding this site to this post. It can be hard to see and is easy to miss. Click on each symbol in that list, in order. Here they want us to click on the O, then click on the p, then the R, and finally the n.

Your download will start.

The next few images you ask to download, will not have this CAPTCHA step. Eventually, you will see it again. After that, it shows up more and more frequently if you are downloading lots of images.

There is one more step for me. Your browser will have opened a new tab and the images on that screen are related to the one you downloaded. I like to scroll down this page to see if there is anything else that would be useful. for example, my original search word was ‘travel.’ that search returned several travel-related images, including the image of the world with vehicles driving around it. There will be more travel images that might be interesting on the page after the download has started.

One More Almost Free Image Source – ETSY

You can search Etsy for CLIPART and a keyword and buy packs of images you can use in FaceBook or Instagram posts, Blog posts, and PowerPoint presentations.

Here is an example:

Image from Etsy -one of the four image sources covered here.

That’s it, a fourth in this list of free image sources. The purchase price is usually less than $5

Until Next Time. Have a Great Day! Oh Hale Yes!

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