The Creative Portfolio of Melissa K. Vassar-Belloso

Five Stock Sites Worth Your Money


No creative can do everything themselves. Whether it’s to fill a gap,save time,or supplement a part of a project out of your scope all creatives need some stock items now and then. But there are so many things to consider. Is it cost effective? Is the license correct? Are there support options for what you’re buying? Searching for the right stock resources can be confusing and exhausting with the sheer amount of sites out there saying they have thousands of the highest quality assets. Today on Creative 5 we’re going to look at what sites are really the best place to go to top off your next project.

Why do we Need Stock Sites?

No matter how creative you are, you’ve probably run into a situation where you needed a stock asset. Things like royalty-free music, a quick video intro, or a nice versatile stock graphic can not only save you time but also add that necessary polish to a project. Stock sites are something that are not hard to find. In fact it could be debated there are too many options and some of them are dipping out of stock that creators submit to multiple sites. This means that if you like a graphic on one site, it’s highly likely you can find it on multiple other stock sites as well. When you’re trying to preserve a project budget knowing that you’re getting the best deal on your stock assets is key.

Now if you’ve never used a stock site there are a lot of reasons to change your mind about that for your upcoming projects.

  1. They can help fill a gap. For example, if you’re a writer but not an artist you can use it to still get quality graphics. If you’re not great with videos you can find a nice quality customizable one on a stock site for a professional touch. If you need to add flair to your streaming, you can find a nice piece of royalty-free music. No creative is good at every creative discipline so stock sites can enhance what you have done and polish off the project in a professional manner.
  2. They save time. You can find bases for projects and add personal touches to them to cut production time down considerably.
  3. They support other creatives. Not all artists aspire to hang in galleries but rather have portfolios on stock sites. Buying a stock vector,photo,or sound every now and then is a great way to pay it forward and support creatives who draw income from creating stock resources.

Now stock sites have evolved a lot over the years. You can get a lot more than just stock images now. You can also get sounds,music,video clips,game scripts,website scripts,product mock-ups,photoshop actions, and even site or publication templates depending on what site you’re checking out. However, when you’re considering sites,the content is actually not what you should base your decision on completely.

Here are some of the things that you need to make top priority when checking out a stock site.


Most stock sites require a membership of some kind. The majority of them follow a pricing model of x number of images for x number of dollars. Some but not all of them separate that further by license type or make it monthly or yearly. While not as popular,some of them do have pricing models that are per item. But what about the ones that have a free category you might ask. You need to be cautious with this because most of the sites that have free images offer them free in only non-commercial usage or as commercial with attribution. If you plan on doing anything remotely commercial with the project you need to go in expecting to pay something. While I will be covering some “free” sites in the article I would say to take that with a grain of salt because they will mostly only benefit you if the project is completely non-profit. That means if you plan to put the design on a t-shirt,in a print you plan to sell,or in a book you plan to publish you’ll be breaking the law using that image in the project and profiting from it and subject to being sued by the content creator if you can’t produce the proper license.

License Type

What bumps the price up most when using a stock site is that you’re very likely to need a commercial usage license as a professional creative. This means you need to pay more to download images with the right license. Not a lot of people create projects they aren’t planning to sell or put on a product for sale so one of the big factors you want to keep in mind when choosing a stock site is how much that commercial license is going to put you out. You might be thinking of using the cheaper license and bumping it up later but most of these sites don’t allow that and will force you to purchase and download the image again with the proper license. Remember that one download is literally one download and it’s specific to exactly the circumstances at the time of the download. In other words, if you download that file under the cheaper license now,that download will most likely only count under the cheaper license. You can’t upgrade it later or change your mind about the license after you download it on most sites.


A lot of stock assets are on more than one stock site so don’t buy the hype that you truly are on your best option for stock resources. If you find some assets you like, do a comparison on other sites and see if you can find it on a site that fits your needs and budget better first. Many creatives who make their living creating stock resources put their content on more than one site to maximize profits so don’t take a less than desirable pricing scheme thinking you can’t get that asset anywhere else. Comparison shopping is really key in finding the right stock site to spend your hard-earned dollars on so don’t rush your decision only to find that a better site had the same thing for a better price.

Support Options

Some assets come with things like support or customization. If that’s something you need or want then make a point to choose a site that has a good reputation for that. Some stock sites are designed more for a shop and go encounter but if you do your homework than you can find ones that offer additional services like a few months of product support or customization so you can get the most bang for your buck.

Top Picks

So like last time I will specify before we get to the lists that these are my picks. If you feel like I’ve missed a site,misjudged a site,or don’t agree with something on my list I would encourage you to use this article as a jumping off point into your own exploration of stock sites. Don’t be discouraged to give any of the ones on the list a look just because they aren’t in the top of my list. Everyone is different and has different opinions and needs so this is my list and yours may very well be a little different.

I will be rating these based on partially my opinion after browsing them and in some cases having used them before but also on some more objective points like pricing,support,product variety, and product amount because I think those things will matter the most to people. Just like last time I will also give the sites a grade based on my ratings. The one thing I won’t rate on is payment options because most sites are now pretty standard in taking the typical forms like credit card and Paypal so I don’t think that’s worth putting as a rating point but I will say that payment method is something you should indeed consider as a small factor when looking into these sites.

Another thing I will not be doing just based on how huge this issue is already, is diving into the rabbit hole of deeper pricing model comparison. I may revisit that aspect as an add-on to this article at some point but today I want to be able to focus on more of an overview of the sites themselves.

The Top Five Premium Stock Sites

These are stock sites that I felt definitely were either mostly or all payment based.

#1 Envato 

Over the years I’ve really appreciated Envato more and more. It’s not only a very versatile site with a lot of varied and quality assets but also a site where you can get custom work by a hired professional,tutorials, and other professional services. Today we’re mainly looking at the Envato market which is where the larger library of assets are but I would encourage you to take in the whole site if you get the time. It’s really great to look at,easy to navigate and understand, and very fairly priced. I also like that they have products right for people on different levels so you can benefit from the site whether you’re a casual asset shopper or a creative professional.Another notable thing is also that they have a wide range and seemingly equally wide understanding of licensing. It shows they care about how the content is being used and have actually done their homework when it comes to legal issues.

Go to Envato Market

User Friendly: 5/5

The Envato site doesn’t just run well but looks good while doing it. It’s very cleanly designed and a pleasure to navigate.

Pricing: 5/5

Envato uses pricing by item and not a monthly membership in their primary marketplace which I love. It means I can go in and grab an asset when I need it and not have to lose money paying for a month and maybe not using it to the fullest all the time. To accommodate creative professionals they do have another plan with a monthly pricing model but I think it’s nice they also accommodate people who might be one-stop or occasional project shoppers.


Depending on what kind of asset you buy, most Envato developers do seem pretty open to product support. I mostly see it with things that have some minor installation element to them like codes,templates, and photoshop actions but Envato seems to have a mostly decent community of asset developers that seem open to communication with buyers. It’s hard for me to rate this since I’ve never needed that support but I can tell you a lot of products do have support options you can add and customization options for a fee.

Product Quality: 5/5

I’ve loved every template and graphic I’ve gotten from Envato and I rarely see a low quality item in their marketplace when I’m browsing.A lot of times I find a ton of things I wish I needed for a project because of how nice they are.

Product Variety: 5/5

Envato has everything you could ever need and a bunch of other things you wish you had a project you needed it for. Everything is really attractively organized and they have a ton of variety. Unlike a lot of the other sites I looked at they even have a dedicated area for 3D files while a lot of the others just lump them in with vectors. The Envato market is truly a one-stop shop for a project.

Product Amount:5/5

Envato boasts over 9 million files so I think it’s fair to say they have a decent selection. To be fair this number covers all the various products but I think there’s a lot of value in the sheer variety of products available that trumps how many stock model photos you can buy.

This site’s final grade is an…


I would highly recommend Envato for anyone. The pricing is great. The quality and variety of the products really can’t be touched. On top of that the site looks and runs great and sets itself apart in so many ways in comparison to other stock sites. If you’ve never checked out Envato then I would highly suggest you do for your next project. It’s a great experience and truly gives you bang for your buck.

#2 Shutterstock

This list had to have Shutterstock on it. I don’t just say that because Shutterstock is one of the stock site giants but because I’ve actually used it. They do a lot of things right and have really helped set the standard for what a stock site should be. Shutterstock is usually one of the first stock sites people think of when they need a stock asset and that’s for good reason. While I’d love to see some change in pricing model, the selection of quality assets really can’t be denied and it’s rightfully cemented itself as a go to site for professionals and casual creatives alike.

Go to Shutterstock

User Friendly: 5/5

Shutterstock like Envato looks and runs great. It’s always maintained a very clean design and user friendly interface with a great search engine.

Pricing: 5/5

I respect Shutterstock for what it is but they can be on the pricey end of things at times and like a lot of these sites I’d love to see more of them adopting per asset pricing like Envato as at least an option because I think that appeals more to a casual creative versus a professional who can reliably anticipate needing a ton of images. What I will give them credit for is that they do have an “on-demand” package for some of the assets and the added bonus of the editor so you can get a little more bang for your buck. They do seem to be growing their site to meet the market demands of creatives and it shows. I will also give them kudos for not slapping universal pricing on the different asset types. It does appear that they’ve taken efforts to craft the pricing packages to suit the type of content.


Shutterstock actually beats Envato on their approach to customization for me. I love that the editor is there and you can play with the image a little and really make sure it will meet your specific needs before investing in it. I’ve even played with the editor and I have to say it’s pretty nice to work with. As far as support, they don’t deal in things like templates or coding that I feel that matters. They mostly do images and they found a way to add to that experience substantially with the editor.

Product Quality: 5/5

Quality control seems to be very in order with this site. I have yet to browse across Shutterstock and find something of poor quality.

Product Variety: 4/5

They cover the big areas of visual,video, and sound but they do it well and make content easy to organize and sort so you can find quality stuff in an efficient manner.

Product Amount:#5/5

Shutterstock has a huge library of content that’s constantly growing so I’d say they are definitely contenders in this area. As a plus they maintain and organize all that stuff really well and that gets big points with the minorly OCD portion of my brain.

This site’s final grade is an…


Shutterstock has rightfully earned it’s place as a template for the stock site community. While it’s not perfect I would highly recommend it as a creative resource to anyone and definitely as being worth your hard-earned dollars. It’s really the best of the traditional stock site experience so if something kind of odd like Envato isn’t your cup of tea then Shutterstock will probably be your next best option.


#3 Dreamstime

Dreamstime made this slot because it’s sort of the best of both worlds. It’s got most of the appeal of Shutterstock in its paid options but also tries to throw a bone to the public domain & free content seekers. Dreamstime is one of the heavier weight champs after Shutterstock in the stock site community and I have even been able to find some of the same graphical assets on both sites more than once. I’m not a fan of how they handle licenses but it’s a small nitpick more than a huge problem to be honest. It’s weird but it does work.

Go to Dreamstime

User Friendly: 5/5

The site is attractive and easy to navigate. It’s not nearly as broken down or simple in the sorting department in comparison to Shutterstock but still not unpleasant to use. The search is still very easy to get the hang of and allows for some decent filtering. Side by side there’s only minor presentation differences between this and Shutterstock. I won’t deduct points for nitpicking on this one though because navigation wise they’re a small sliver from being a Shutterstock clone.

Pricing: 5/5

I like the pricing model a lot more than Shutterstock in a lot of ways. They did make efforts to craft something unique to them. It’s straightforward,cheaper, and offers an alternative of using site credits so you could shop assets casually if you wanted to. The pricing model is actually what made me choose this as the resource to save up for to do graphics for my upcoming book. They also run promo deals a lot so you could potentially save yourself a lot of money subscribing at the right time.


They make it much easier to download a comp image but there’s little no support or customization options offered. I appreciate not having to dig for the comp image like I do on some other stock sites but it’s a very thin silver lining in terms of what this article is looking at. I’m also giving them some points for the nice hassle-free lightbox system they have so at least they aren’t walking away with the lowest rating in this category.

Product Quality: 5/5

I didn’t find anything different in quality from Shutterstock on Dreamstime.

Product Variety: 4/5

Dreamstime covers pretty much the same scope of variety as Shutterstock and the majority of most stock sites.

Product Amount:4/5

The library is definitely smaller in comparison to Shutterstock but what’s there is good and well sorted for the most part.

This site’s final grade is a…


Dreamstime could easily be seen as a poor man’s Shutterstock in a lot of areas. They are a pretty standard model as far as stock sites go but I think in product comparison standards they are very close to Shutterstock in quality and content.I like that they made some nice changes in the pricing model. I would definitely recommend checking it out at the very least and would even consider giving their service a shot myself in the future as it does seem slightly more affordable in the monthly packages and they share a lot of similar or exact content to Shutterstock. With Dreamstime I would say do some comparison shopping. You can get a lot of similar or same assets but for less than the Shutterstock cost if your budget is tighter. I also think the credits system would have a definite appeal factor for some people.

#4 iStock

iStock partly made this slot because of how much I appreciate Getty Images. Beyond that, they do stand out as a very professional resource and they have an excellent and truly flexible pricing model that notably has rollover on unused downloads. They have an interesting approach to a lightbox that while I didn’t test it does seem like a legitimate attempt to set themselves apart and add to browsing the site. Out of a lot of the sites I looked at, Getty seems to be making one of the more genuine attempts to not be a Shutterstock clone. It’s just simplistically priced quality content backed by the industry-known quality of Getty and clean presentation which I really liked.

Go to iStock

User Friendly: 5/5

iStock has an attractive and clean design but also simplistic and streamlined navigation. It’s a great looking site that’s a breeze to use and I think that’s all that you really need sometimes.

Pricing: 5/5

I love that they have a truly flexible and forgiving pricing model. I also really like the rollover which not all sites give you an option for. I really adds value to the site. I also think their pricing is among the more reasonable levels in comparison to some other stock sites. This is definitely a site where you can tell they want you to get the most out of your money spent. They also have the option of credits or just straight up buying an image which appeals to a more casual asset shopper.


iStock seems to be more focused on a buy-and-go model so there are no extra tools or services I was able to find.

Product Quality: 5/5

Everything I looked at oozed professional quality and I’d expect nothing less from Getty.

Product Variety: 4/5

iStock covers the standard categories of visuals,video, and audio.

Product Amount:5/5

I found it interesting iStock doesn’t throw numbers out on the content of their library. They just boost the content and do it well. For me that adds points. They focus on quality and not quantity. I think they definitely have a sizable library going on and I love how they display the content instead of flapping their gums or telling me how many millions of files they have stored on their site.

This site’s final grade is a…


Istock shines in it’s great presentation,excellent pricing model, and quality content. It doesn’t need customization,inflated numbers,or anything else to prove to you that it’s a great site that will give you the most bang for your buck. I would highly recommend giving this site a look!


#5 Storyblocks/Videoblocks/Audioblocks

Storyblocks reminds me of a lighter Envato in a lot of ways. They take a slightly different approach to what they’re doing and it shows. The site pops and the content is good. I also like that they’re trying to be for creatives but also fueled by them. It’s a nice touch to see a stock site making a real attempt to be fair to their contributors. While I have used Videoblocks before I only became aware the site had other stock assets when I was researching for this article.

Go to Storyblocks

User Friendly: 5/5

The site is undeniably great looking. I found it to be simplistic but creative and it was an excellent frame to make the content the real star. Like iStock, I saw a lot of simplistic navigation that allowed the actual content to speak for itself. My one nitpick is that it opens a lot of tabs when you go to the different categories on the site but it wasn’t really enough to stop me from wanting to see more and more of what Storyblocks had to offer.

Pricing: 5/5

I love it. They’re pricing is affordable,simplistic, and combined with a really great approach to licensing.


This is another site that is more buy-and-go but it really works for them and I like how simplistic they make the download process.

Product Quality: 5/5

Everything I came across looked great and was presented well.

Product Variety: 5/5

They still just have the standard fare but I like their approach.

Product Amount:5/5

Again I noticed they didn’t plaster the size of their library around and again I give kudos for that. The great content speaks for itself,is well organized, and is quite numerous by the looks of it. Quality over quantity earns more points with me.

This site’s final grade is an…


Storyblocks made me think of the unique approach of Envato fused with the great content and presentation of iStock. I definitely think it’s worth a look and an investment if you decide to use it. It was a no frills experience that let the content truly shine.

The Top Five “Free” Stock Sites

These are stock sites that I felt had a more significant library of free options with a paid or premium option included for commercial use. Originally the plan was to just have the above five and honorable mentions but I realized these sorts of stock sites have their own appeal and audience so I did an extra top five for them.

#1 Freepik

Freepik is one of the nicer ones of this category and one I’ve used before. Like most of the “Free” stock sites it only focuses on graphical elements and avoids audio and video but unlike a good number of them they didn’t sacrifice polish and it’s a very nice site with well curated content. I thought this site had one of the better libraries of free content and the premium aspect of it is really affordable and worth the money.

Go to Freepik

User Friendly: 5/5

Freepik has the same clean design and great navigation you’d expect from a typical Shutterstock clone. It’s a good looking site with simple navigation and presents content well.

Pricing: 5/5

They have a great selection of content that’s free with attribution and a very affordable premium service.


They don’t have customization or support but they get some points for providing an article that educates about how to edit a vector. It’s the thought that counts.

Product Quality: 5/5

I saw consistently good quality on this site like I’d expect to see on a site like Shutterstock.

Product Variety: 3.5/5

They only supply visual assets and no video or audio. However, they provide a very wide range of visual elements including  PSD files.

Product Amount:5/5

They have a lot of really nicely sorted content that’s well presented on the site and they add to it often.

This site’s final grade is a…


This site is not just great as a free resource but also a great option for a tight budget if you buy into the premium service. It’s a site that truly does strike me as Shutterstock with more free stuff and lower cost. I would highly recommend giving this site a look if you need great graphics for not a lot of expense.


#2 Pixabay

Pixabay is another free stock site that doesn’t sacrifice on quality or polish. It notably also has free video content as well. The content is genuinely free for even commercial use with no attribution and the site is cleanly designed and has a lot of great search filters that make the right content a breeze to find.

Go to Pixabay

User Friendly: 5/5

The site looks great,presents content well, and is simple to navigate.

Pricing: 5/5

I scoured the site and found no mention of money or even a premium service like a number of sites like this use so this one is actually 100% free from what I can tell.


There were no customization or support options that I found.

Product Quality: 4/5

Some of the vectors are a possible mixed bag but I didn’t see anything too awful and the other categories had quality content for the most part.

Product Variety: 3.5/5

There’s just images and video but no audio.

Product Amount:4/5

The library seems to be pretty decently sized and pretty well sorted.

This site’s final grade is a…


Pixabay is actually free and very worth checking out. It seems to be a simplistic site that provides great quality graphics and video for free just as it states. If you want some great content on a budget, I would highly recommend giving Pixabay a browse.


#3 Vexels

Vexels follows a more expected operation for a free stock site. The assets are free for non-commercial use with attribution so the mileage on the free aspect is limited if you want to create with the intention of eventual profit. The premium options aren’t too bad and won’t empty your wallet drastically though. I also like that they have an editor like Shutterstock so you can customize the products you buy easily.I also like that they had a resource bundle packaged with the paid options to add some garnish to your purchase. It’s a nice touch.

Go to Vexels

User Friendly: 4/5

It’s an attractive and cleanly designed site with a few busy spots but overall decent navigation.

Pricing: 4/5

I thought the pricing was fair but the license options could be handled better. But I thought the fact they added a resource bundle and some perks for the price was a nice touch.


Support is available in all the paid plans and while I didn’t take it for a spin, the customization editor is a nice touch that adds value to the service.

Product Quality: 5/5

Everything seems to be of a good quality on the site and some of it is even print ready.

Product Variety: 3/5

They only do graphical elements but they have a nice variety of types.

Product Amount:3.5/5

It’s a smaller library but packed with quality.

This site’s final grade is a…


Vexels is definitely worth checking out,especially if you’re looking to design POD content. The free aspect is not that impressive but it seems like an affordable alternative to some other pricier stock sites and gives you a lot of good stuff for your money on top of the graphical content.I think the editor is definitely a plus as well.


#4 Vecteezy

I was vaguely aware of Vecteezy before this article and may have even used it in passing for projects. I have also used Brusheezy which I think is sort of related to this site but it’s photoshop brushes. Vecteezy is a really solid stock alternative with a decent supply of free content and a premium option with premium content.

Go to Vecteezy

User Friendly: 5/5

The site is great looking and a breeze to navigate.It focuses more on content then words and clutter.

Pricing: 5/5

There’s a decent amount of free content that’s free for personal or commercial use with attribution and the premium service is reasonably priced in comparison to most stock sites.


There is no support but there is actually an option to edit the vector.

Product Quality: 5/5

Everything I saw was good quality.

Product Variety: 4.5/5

This site is just graphics but it looks like they may have other sites that cover video and themes so I’m going to give them points for those and also for Brusheezy which I really like.

Product Amount:5/5

They didn’t throw out any numbers on the amount of stuff in the library but it looked pretty big and had quality stuff in it.

This site’s final grade is an…


Vecteezy is reasonably priced and packed with quality content. I would definitely recommend checking it out. The free content isn’t skimpy like some of the other ones I looked at and the site is a joy to use as long as you don’t hate orange.

#5 Pixeden

Pixeden pops out to me as maybe what Envato would be with more free options but less polish. It has some unique variety to the assets it offers and a very affordable premium option but definitely has room to grow and limited usage potential. I could see it as a site you might find things on every now and again but it isn’t a one-stop resource and has mixed quality control and a lot of assets you can find on other sites.

Go to Pixeden

User Friendly: 3.5/5

While the site is technically very cleanly designed and user friendly, I wasn’t a huge fan of how the content was displayed and found the navigation more annoying as I used it.I won’t however dock points for what’s technically a personal nitpick and you might feel totally differently than me about it. I think what turned me off was how bloglike it looked while some of the other stock sites I looked at went for more of a business website look. I also think there is some room for improvement on the content navigation and organization.

Pricing: 5/5

There’s a lot of nice free stuff and the premium option is really cheap.


I didn’t really find any support or customization options on the site.

Product Quality: 3.5/5

I personally found the quality to be a little mixed but didn’t see anything especially unacceptable.

Product Variety: 3/5

I like that they had some more areas like templates and mock-ups but they didn’t have any audio or video assets.

Product Amount:3.5/5

They have a decent amount of content but not what I would call  impressive.

This site’s final grade is a…


I wasn’t impressed with this site and didn’t enjoy navigating it but if you’re on a budget and need a graphical asset or mock-up it might be worth checking out. It has a lot of room for improvement but it also has possible potential to have something that someone might find helpful for a project.

Honorable Mentions

It was really difficult to trim down my honorable mentions this time. Some of these sites are indeed interesting sites with some potential to aid a project but were either not varied or not as polished as the sites on the main lists. That being said while I haven’t graded these they are definitely worth checking out for their own special reasons.


This is a very bloggy looking site that you can clearly tell is built on WordPress. It doesn’t have the polish of something like iStock or Shutterstock. I do like that they had photoshop brushes and mock-ups as these aren’t always considered a popular thing to have on some stock sites.There’s definitely a lot of room for improvement and I think the template choice for what they’re looking to do was a poor one. I didn’t feel the site was especially organized and it was actually quite busy and clunky at points.

I like that you have the option to just buy the asset you want or do the membership. It’s a nice simple transaction model. You do have to dig pretty hard for the free stuff and I didn’t find an easy option to filter out just the free stuff. I was a little torn on whether the membership pricing was actually good or bad. It was communicated in a sort of murky and obnoxious manner. It’s not astronomical but I think it’s questionable what you actually get and if it’s worth the price.If you’re one of those people who likes picking through a clearance bin to find the good stuff then this is the stock site for you. You might find something decent there if you take the time to really scour and don’t mind the sort of questionable site design and confusing pricing.

Go to Wegraphics


Some people might be kind of surprised this site got dropped into being an honorable mention but let me explain. Depositphotos gave me the impression of a less ambitious Dreamstime. They are eerily close and both in the category of being Shutterstock clones but I just felt Dreamstime made slightly more effort to differentiate themselves. Because of that Depositphotos is down here but definitely a site with merit that I would encourage you to check out. They have affordable pricing,nice content and a very user-friendly site. I just felt putting it and Dreamstime on the main list was a little redundant since they are so similar.

Go to Depositphotos

Free Vector Maps

While this site was way too niche to make the main lists, it’s also way too cool to not make a note of. This site has exactly what the name implies,vector maps. If you have a project that needs a nice map or just like really cool maps I would give this site a look.

Go to Free Vector Maps


This site was left off the main lists because it’s very focused on icons and just icons. But they’re really nice icon sets and I would definitely check them out. It’s a really nice site and there are a whole lot of icons. You have to give props to sites that do one thing and do it well.

Go to Dryicons


I discovered this site a while ago and while it’s nothing fancy it has a lot of really nifty png and clipart images that are surprisingly well-organized. It’s not as impressive as something like Shutterstock but works great in a pinch.

Go to Pngimg


This site is kind of a train wreck to initially look at but actually has decent stuff if you can stomach the cluttered design long enough to search.As a bonus there is some great attempted English on parts of the site that makes it additionally worth checking out.

Go to All-Free-Download

This site looks awful but also looks like it has the potential to have some decent content if you can look past the unfortunate color choices. I didn’t dig deeply but it definitely looks interesting and most of the vectors are of decent quality and are free for use with attribution.

Go to


Morguefile is a rather interestingly named stock photo site that houses free stock images for personal and commercial project usage. It’s actually been around for quite a while and while it isn’t as organized or attractive as some of the other sites on the list it might be something worth checking out.

Go to Morguefile

Flat Icon

This last one is another icon site. It’s very similar to Dryicon but with a slightly larger selection.

Go to FlatIcon

Website Planet Favicon Generator

This amendment to the article is courtesy of Mylee Behn who suggested it to me via my contact form after this article was originally posted. This generator isn’t quite like anything else I have on here, but I found it very cool that it allows you to make your own favicons from any image. The site has a lot of other tools and services as well that looked pretty nice so check it out! If you have some ideas of your own after reading my blogs, make sure you send them to me and I’m always happy to check things out and maybe even add them to the blog to share them with others.

Go to Favicon Generator



So that is all for this issue of Creative 5 but I hope that you walk away from reading this article feeling educated and excited. Stock sites fill a very necessary place of importance for creatives and I hope that this small list can be a big beginning for your next great project.


Thanks for reading this issue of Creative 5!

Did you agree or disagree with my choices? Did I miss some sites?  Please feel free to let me know by leaving a comment or using the contact form on my site here to reach out to me. Also if you like my work  and would like to see more of it or support it I’d love it if you’d check out my Patreon page or follow me on Facebook or Twitter via @themeinav!


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