There are a lot of great free resources out there but you always have to be careful of copyright. Images found on google are almost always owned by someone and actually need to be purchased before you can use them, even if you can find a high res copy. Unless something is CC0(Creative Commons Zero) or comes with a resale license, you are very limited to what you can do with it. Nearly Everything you download from the sites below can be freely used in local advertisements and or handouts that are not being sold. You just need to be careful with putting things online or selling them. Some do not allow any kind of online republishing and others just require attribution under CCA (Creative Commons Attribution).
Just read the type of license these things come with before using the content. But if CC0 is listed your free to do absolutely anything with it.
Free Weekly/Monthly Premium Content: These sites give away Weekly/Monthly Free resources:
- iStock (Photos/Vectors/Video)
- Shutterstock (Photo/Vector)
- Light Stock (Photo/Vector/Video)
- EnvatoMarket (Photo/Video/AE Templates/Audio/Graphics/Code/3D Elements/WP Themes)
- CMG (Motion Graphics)
CC0 Photos: These sites offer quality CC0 (Creative Commons Zero licensed) Photos:
- Unsplash is my #1 place to look for high quality royalty free images. They hold some of the best quality images on the internet regardless of them being a free site. I always check them first
- Pexels is my second place I look for photos. They collect photos from various CC0 photos sites and usually only have the best quality work but you can find some duds here and there
- Jay Mantri offering extremely stunning photos usually of landscapes. Hard to filter though and find what you want but you’re guaranteed some high quality photos here
- Gratisography has some of the most unique quirky stock photos online but they are top quality. Good place to search when you’re looking for something unusual.
- New Old Stock is a unique site that has loads of vintage photos from the past few centuries
- Pixabay is my last resort site when I need a specific image that I can’t find at any other site. The Quality of work on here ranges from Amazing to very poor. But everything Is CC0 which is why I use them instead of Google.
- TheStocks.im BUT if you’re tired of looking at all these sites you could always look at one site that has all of them. TheStock.im compiled a site that lets you easily switch between every major Free stock site out there.
- A list of lists: http://techchurch.co/80-places-to-find-free-photos-for-your-church-website/
Other Photos: These photos are not CC0 but they are still safe to use in most cases.
- PicJumbo has very high quality photos with a smaller size library to choose from.
Video: Unfortunately when it comes to free video there isn’t a lot of high quality options. And some require attribution. But here are some I have found that I will filter through:
- IRIS32 Is one of the only High Quality Free Content you can find for video but it’s mostly landscape time lapse
- MazWai is another high quality option but his videos are usually compilations. So you will only get short clips from it usually
- Pexels Video is by the same people who do Pexels for photos but for video. You can find quality options here but a lot of the content is not very good
- Clip Canvas
- Free HD Footage
Motion Graphics: Free Motion backgrounds and other Motion Graphics
Music: Here are some of the best places to find free music. Some of them are CC Attribution and other can only be used for very specific things depending on the track, but you just need to check the license before using the track.
- YouTube Library this is YouTube creator studio assistant that gives awesome music track that can be used in video. Most are free to use but a handful are CCA.
- Vimeo Music Store not everything is free here but a lot is. The licensing on these can be tricky too so tread carefully
- FMA the free music archive is a place where people post there music and all of it can be downloaded for free to listen to. But only a portion of it can be used in videos. Just check the license before using them
- Free Stock Music most stuff here is totally safe to use but most of it is pretty poor quality music as well
- Bensound makes great music but there aren’t much choices and it’s all CCA so you have to make attributions
- Seeds This is free music from Church on the Move
SFX: For sound effects there are a couple good places
Vector Graphics: The sites I use for this kind of stuff are great but you need to keep in mind the limitations. Unless its CC0 you have to attribute or you can only use it in specific media examples that are not published online.
- FreePik is an amazing place to find anything from vector invite templates to race car vectors. Nearly everything from here is in vector but they do have a smaller psd and jpeg library
- Vecteezy has a lot of icons and other vector type images but its all CCA so make sure your attributing when posting things onlnie
Christ Centered Media: this is Christian Sites for free & some paid media content
- Creation Swap they offer all forms of media from videos to Graphics
- Church Media Drop this is churches helping churches. People can post work they have done and let other churches use it
- Scripture Art a large library of free to use scripture art from Life Church
- CMG Create these are free stills and other graphics made from the great people at CMG
Fonts: Not all these options are exactly free but some of them have free content and pay what you want content.
- FontFabric Premium paid and free fonts
- LostType Pay what you want Fonts
- FontSquirrel if there is a font your looking for Font Squirrel probably has it or at least a replica of it and they do the legal way
- Textures sometimes you just need a pattern or texture. This is the best place to find nearly any kind of texture you can think of
Church Resources: There are a few churches out there that have felt called to share all their work with the public to use for free. This ranges from actual full sermons and children’s curriculum, small group teachings, to video bumpers and Worship songs etc. Each Church has a plethora of stuff available to use for free.
When you can’t find what you need on any of these sites (which is unlikely) you can always turn to Church Media Spot which is a site dedicated to sharing every good free and paid way to find anything for churches. There are even software and training recommendations there.