PicFindr: Free stock photo and image search

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(Reprinted from Design View #31)
Most of us need to use photo stock from time to time and I think this is one of the areas of design that has steadily improved with the passing years. Firstly, if you have very specific imagery needs and/or a lack of time, commercial stock houses like Corbis, iStockPhoto, and (sometime Design View sponsor) Fotolia.com have the range, and have become cheaper, more flexible (license-wise) and dramatically more usable over the past 3-4 years. Hurrah for competition! But perhaps the least expected development has been the continued rise of free image resource sites. It seems the breathtaking success of Flickr has helped to entrench the idea of sharing your imagery with the world, and free stock sites like SXC.hu, MorgueFile
and Image:After have reaped the benefits in the form of an increasing influx of quality imagery from their communities. Picfindr.comNow, with the release of Picfindr.com, locating free stock imagery just got easier. You could describe Picfindr.com as a free stock site metasearch application, allowing you to query a handful of sites simultaneously, then review the results in a single window. Rick Englert, developer of the service, describes it as “minimalist at the moment” — somewhere between alpha and beta — but already it provides a great set of features, including intelligent searching and allowing users to exclude images on the basis of their licensing requirements (i.e. author crediting, altering the image, or permission prerequisites). Plans are also afoot for more advanced search options, including ‘AND/OR’ options and the ability to search by color, size or orientation. Summary: Picfindr is still a little raw, but already it’s a handy, free service that only seems likely to get better. Well worth a look.

Frequently Asked Questions about PicFindr

What is PicFindr and how does it work?

PicFindr is a free stock photo and image search engine that helps you find high-quality images from various sources across the web. It works by aggregating images from different stock photo websites, allowing users to search for images using keywords. The search results can be filtered by license type, making it easier for users to find images they can use for different purposes.

Is PicFindr free to use?

Yes, PicFindr is completely free to use. It does not require any subscription or payment. However, while the service itself is free, some images found through PicFindr may require payment or attribution to the original creator, depending on the license type.

How does PicFindr compare to other image search engines?

PicFindr stands out from other image search engines by focusing on high-quality stock photos. It aggregates images from various stock photo websites, saving users the time and effort of searching each site individually. Additionally, it allows users to filter search results by license type, making it easier to find images that can be used legally for different purposes.

Can I use images found on PicFindr for commercial purposes?

The ability to use images for commercial purposes depends on the license type of the image. PicFindr allows users to filter search results by license type, so you can easily find images that are free for commercial use. However, it’s always important to check the specific licensing details of each image before use.

Does PicFindr host the images it finds?

No, PicFindr does not host any images. It simply acts as a search engine, finding images from various stock photo websites and directing users to the original source of the image.

How often is PicFindr updated with new images?

PicFindr is updated regularly with new images as they become available on the various stock photo websites it searches. However, the frequency of updates may vary depending on the source website.

Can I submit my own photos to PicFindr?

No, PicFindr does not accept submissions of photos. It is a search engine that finds images from other stock photo websites.

Does PicFindr have an app?

Currently, PicFindr does not have a dedicated mobile app. However, the website is mobile-friendly and can be accessed through any web browser on a smartphone or tablet.

How can I contact PicFindr for support or inquiries?

PicFindr does not provide direct contact support as it is a free service. However, if you have any issues or inquiries, you can try reaching out through the original source website of the image.

Can I use PicFindr without creating an account?

Yes, you can use PicFindr without creating an account. It is a free and open search engine that does not require users to sign up or log in.

Alex WalkerAlex Walker
View Author

Alex has been doing cruel and unusual things to CSS since 2001. He is the lead front-end design and dev for SitePoint and one-time SitePoint's Design and UX editor with over 150+ newsletter written. Co-author of The Principles of Beautiful Web Design. Now Alex is involved in the planning, development, production, and marketing of a huge range of printed and online products and references. He has designed over 60+ of SitePoint's book covers.

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