Whether you’re creating learning materials for teaching kids at home, starting out your own business and branding, or creating enticing ads for clients, you’ll always need illustrations and graphics to supplement as visual content.
However, not everything that you can find on the internet is free to use, especially for commercial purposes. Copyrighted images, when used without attributions or without the agreement from their creator, can get you in trouble.
To avoid such mishaps, here are 10 useful sites to grab great royalty-free illustrations from, for free, with no watermarks and will not require you to use attributions:
unDrawn, with its easy-to-use website, gives various flat illustrations and graphics, downloadable with about 2 clicks. Most of the images have concepts or can be easily combined to form situations. You can simply use the color image generator on their site to search for the illustration that you need for your project or your brand and click on it to download.
Open Peeps gives you a vast library of digital or digitized hand-drawn illustrations of people. Created by an artist and illustrator, Pablo Stanley, the illustrations are is available and ready to use for product illustration, marketing, comics, product states, user flows, personas, storyboarding, or whatever you want. You can also customize the illustrations yourself by mixing and matching hairstyles, facial features, activities, and colors. The library is under the CC0 license. This means it’s free for commercial and personal use but you have the option to donate any amount to express your gratitude to the creators.
Scale by Flexiple offers a great range of high-quality, open-source illustrations that you can use for any project be it for commercial, academic or anything else. The site has ready-made themed illustrations that you can download in SVG or PNG format, depending on how you want to use or edit it. You can choose the quality and search by colors to keep your illustrations coherent. Scale is also planning to add other features that will allow users to customize the illustrations too.
Artvee is a site that lets you explore classical art including paintings, drawings and illustrations from some of the best artists all over the world. You can find precious art pieces in digital format ready for download and can be used for posters, flyers and other personal or commercial projects with no attribution required. You can search for themes, elements, by artist or by keyword through their categorized library. They also have sections for special collections and book illustrations that you can use too. Just create a free account on the Artvee website and indulge on the fascinating pieces that you can see and use.
Design.Dev gives high-quality digital design resources, from illustrations to icons and banners, ready to use for your next project. It has a huge collection of illustrations including background, figures (e.g. animals, houses etc.), and vectors that will give you a bunch of ideas and inspiration to create graphic arts. However, you might need to pay for a premium account to access quality prints or website templates. But if you don’t need such and are only looking for illustrations, you can sign up for free and get the illustration packs that you need.
FreshFolk is created by Leni Kauffman, an American-Japanese illustrator currently living and working in London. Its open library of people and objects allows you to generate illustrations by combining different characters with various features, skin tone, outfit and poses to create what you want to really represent. You can also create pictures and scenes with a range of 43 objects to mix and match.
Lukas Zadam is a creative content creator and artist who have made his illustrations free for download. From his website, you can easily find and get MIT licensed SVG illustration images in different shapes and styles and ready to use for your projects. You can choose among different colored or themed designs including people, objects, icons, and other illustration sets. Everything is open source and royalty-free with no attribution needed when used. But if you find Lukas’ art very useful, you can thank him by subscribing to his youtube channel, and maybe learn some about illustration, content creation, and even SEO as well.
Retrovectors offers royalty-free vectors with vintage vibes. They also have a lot of styles of vectors, from Victorian-style greyscale illustrations to the retro 80s print images, which can be downloaded with a minimum of $2 per pack. But you can always stick to their free vectors section for absolutely charge-free access to vectors you can use. Retrovectors also provides inspirations, font suggestions, and tutorials on how you can make the most out of your graphics and illustrations. You can also check out some free retro and vintage-looking images on RetroPicts.
RawPixel is a great source of both graphic aesthetic works and high-quality photographs. If you’re looking for a collection of free designs with different artistic styles, their repository is worth a visit. They have a curated section for images with a CC0 license and Public Domain illustrations. From there, you can find designs that are absolutely free to use for personal and commercial projects. They also offer limited free access to copyrighted high-quality images from photographers, artists, and graphic designers. For this, you can only get a maximum of 10 free images per day. If you want more than that, you have to pay for a premium membership.
Free Illustration might be the best website to wrap this list up, since it collates almost all free illustrations on the internet, in one source. You may find free illustrations from the sources mentioned above plus more images of different themes, colors, and file format. If you will be creating different projects and will need to diversify the illustrations and design for it, Free Illustration is a great source for you. Free Illustrations earns from sponsorships, allowing them to make all the illustrations they compiled in their library absolutely free.
From people and objects to other elements like background and design, there are plenty of free creative illustrations you can get from the web. You just have to choose which style fits your project best and use it creatively to make the most out of it.
Some illustrations and images offered for “free” may still be subject to limited copyright or fair use policy. Your safest bet will be using free stock photo services, creative commons licenses, and public domain repositories of images. This because the images they provide are not subject to fair use policy at all.