Getting free images to use is tricky, the usually either suck, are off topic or are used by everyone and their mum [yes I’m talking about Unsplash in that last point]. Luckily, there are more and more services coming out to help, including ChurchMag offering its own free photos for you to use in your church, ministry or blog. But one of the latests that we here at ChurchMag discovered is Freely, full of free Christian photos.
What is Freely
Freely is a site that is seeking to…
“…make high-quality Christian stock photography available for free. Not because it has no value; but because we believe in giving to equip the Church.”
To do this, they are open to submissions from anyone as long as they don’t mind their image being licensed under Creative Commons Zero licence (aka you can use them for WHATEVER).
The best thing about this site is that the images have a distinct Christian theme to them. That means you don’t have the issue of defaulting to a pretty landscape from an alternative free stock image.
These are also free so they cost you nothing and you don’t have to worry about giving any attribution to the photographer. While I’ve never really found this to be too much of an issue for blog posts, it avoids a painful headache regarding slides in a presentation. No worries about adding a garish URL to the picture or an extra slide with attribution at the end.
Finally, anyone can contribute to Freely, so if you are a bit of an amateur photographer (or protog) and you want to help out Christians with top quality free photos (not cheese stock) then head over and contribute.
But freely isn’t without it’s faults. Importantly, it’s a very new site and service so there are only a few images there so far. This could easily lead to not being able to find a suitable image or reusing the same tired image again and again fairly quickly.
Further to the previous point, there is no search feature on the site…yet. This isn’t a real issue yet due to the small selection of images but if the site does expand, there could be real issue with finding an appropriate image.
Freely isn’t without it’s faults, but it is a great idea and resource that I’m sure many people will find a great use for. It’s certainly worth keeping an eye on to see how it grows and evolves.