When you choose stock photos, do you consider the impact your image choices will have on your audience?
Whether it’s magazine ads, social media posts or website banners, images can carry significant meaning for the people who consume them.
That’s why it’s important for marketers, communicators and content creators to choose images that challenge the stereotypes and biases we’ve been fed for decades.
Below are a few of my favourite FREE stock photo sites with authentic images that help take your creative expression to the next level while supporting diverse and marginalized communities.
So, the next time you’re searching for a photo, keep this list handy. I guarantee you’ll find an image that carries a lot more meaning than the ones you’ll find on traditional stock photo sites.
- Who they are: “…created with the purpose of changing the widely accepted one-dimensional narratives of Afrocentric communities.”
- Types of images: African diaspora
- Website: pichastock.com
VICE Gender Spectrum Collection
- What it is: “A stock photo library featuring images of trans and non-binary models that go beyond the clichés. This collection aims to help media better represent members of these communities as people not necessarily defined by their gender identities—people with careers, relationships, talents, passions, and home lives.”
- Types of images: Transgender and non-binary people
- Website: genderspectrum.vice.com
Centre for Aging Better
- What it is: A “publicly accessible image library of over 300 photos depicting older and disabled people getting active to challenge pervasive negative stereotypes.”
- Types of images: Older people & people with diverse abilities
- Website: ageingbetter.resourcespace.com
AllGo Plus-Size Collection
- What it is: A free stock photo collection that was created with plus-size people in mind. “At AllGo, we’re committed to doing everything we can to increase the representation of plus-size people.”
- Types of images: Plus-size people
- Website canweallgo.com
The Noun Project
- Who they are: “Our global community of photographers is building a professionally curated collection of authentic, beautiful images that celebrate diversity and represent a more inclusive world.”
- Types of images: Inclusive of all communities
- Website: theenounproject.com
Need help choosing inclusive visuals for your next campaign or piece of content?
Use this inclusive stock photography guide for tips on how to select authentic images that represent the true lived experiences of the customers you want to reach.