How to Find Images for Client Projects

It’s tough starting a new project knowing you will need high quality images but don’t how to go about finding them. Below are 3 things you can do to expedite the process of your search.


1. Ask Your Client if They Have an Image Repository

The simplest of steps. Ask your client if they already have a place where their images are stored (there’s Google Drive, Basecamp, Flickr, or maybe even a hard drive with images). If they do not, they will probably need to contact their marketing department to gain access to the files.


2. Utilize Free Online Resources

If your client doesn’t have an image repository, try using free resources. There are more websites with free image options than people are aware of. Below is a list of some that I have used in both personal and client work.


  • Unsplash: Collection of free high-resolution photos (happens to be my favorite).
  • Pixabay: More than 640,000 free stock photos, vectors, and illustrations.
  • Free stock and high resolution images, easy search feature.
  • Skitter photo: Public domain photos free for commercial use.
  • Visual Hunt: Free images pulled from many online sources.
  • LibreStock: Another resource that searches through other sources (images are public domain)
  • Life of Pix: Free for personal and commercial use with no copyright restrictions. New pictures are added weekly.
  • Splitshire: Royalty Free Stock Photos and Images for commercial use.
  • Pixels: Like Visual Hunt and LibreStock, another search engine that finds images under the Creative Commons Zero (CC0) license (pictures are completely free to be used for any legal purpose).
  • Stock Up: Searches 14,055 free stock photos across 27 websites.


3. Ask if There is a Budget

There may be instances where the free resources in step 2 just won’t cut it. There are a lot of great images on websites such as Shutterstock or Dreamstime in which you can sign up for a monthly payment plan or simply buy an image pack. For more info on pricing for Shutterstock visit here and for Dreamstime here.


If your client does have a budget, another option would be to hire a photographer. Say for instance you are in the restaurant business, it would definitely be a smart idea to hire someone to get high quality images of the food you serve.

There you go! Three easy steps to get you started on finding the latest and greatest images for your next design project.

Joanna Veltsistas

Joanna is a senior designer at Fifth Tribe. She has provided content marketing, web, mobile, and design services to clients such as Kaiser Permanente, U.S. Peace Corps, and the Hult Prize. To view more of her work, check out her portfolio at