List of links to internet sites with free transparent cut-out objects and illustrations – called PNG / SVG for short.
Dear pixel-searcher! 😉
Since I am always on the lookout for objects that have already been released for my image processing, my list of links has now been filled with addresses of corresponding locations on the Internet. I also release a lot of objects for my pictures myself, but sometimes I don’t have the time and of course I don’t feel like it. Then I rummage in the online databases for suitable material. In the best case, of course, under CC0 licence, i.e. free to use – also commercially.
Cutting objects from the background is almost like meditation for me
Over the years, I have accumulated quite a few PNGs for image processing, most of which I make freely available. Some PNGs, such as trees, ruins or the vintage flowers, have been cropped from the background by myself in hours of concentrated work. Cropping is often a question of time and patience. For me it is almost like meditation and I try to deliver really perfect work that can be used immediately in pictures without having to touch up faulty areas first. Unfortunately, this often happens when you enlarge an image after downloading it. Edges that are unclean are the most common.
Practice makes perfect…
PNGs are now a market of their own. That was different about 10 years ago. You really had to search laboriously for sources that offered cleanly cropped objects, also called PNG (PNG is the file extension with a transparent background, such as holzhaus.png). Since I couldn’t and didn’t want to spend a lot of money, I started to deal more intensively with the subject of “cropping pictures myself”. If you master the technique and especially the combination possibilities, almost all objects – even the difficult ones – can be cropped from the background.
I love challenges in cropping
Anyone can do simple, but I love the challenges with curly hair, noisy backgrounds, slightly blurred images and…and. These are exactly the objects that help me to get better and better with the cropping tools (in my case Photoshop with mouse and tablet). What’s the saying? Practice makes perfect. That’s right 😉 Yes, but….
I can already hear the big question mark when reading whether I really exempt every object myself. Nope…of course not! I don’t have that much time, because I often fill many of my pictures with an incredible amount of material.
For me, it is absolutely important that they are all offered under CC0 licence or with attribution or – if I ever spend money on material – can also be used for commercial purposes.
But I didn’t want to digress so far from the actual topic. Let’s get to the most important things – the topic:
Where do I actually get cut-out material for my photo manipulations?
OK, let’s get down to brass tacks. Here are a few links to sites with PNGs, clipart and vectors. Please always check before you download objects whether they are free, i.e. can also be used commercially, or for private purposes. On some sites you have to ask or it is written at the top. Some “collection sites” for objects only need a “credit”, i.e. attribution, others need a link. That’s fine, I think, and it’s also an appreciation for the work.
1. Pixabay is by now certainly the first place to go for numerous, excellently cropped objects. I estimate that the database now contains about 100,000 cropped objects. Not all of them are actually transparent, as images are also posted under PNG and are thus displayed in the search function. Link to the Pixabay licence: hier geht es lang
2. PngPix – A fine selection of approx. 2,500 objects from various fields. Admittedly, here and there you will also find objects that are also on the Pixabay database. The question is always – where was it first, because in the CC0 area people like to copy each other on the corresponding pages, which has probably coined the term “copycats”.
3. pngimg.com now has almost 93,000 fancy PNGs from all areas and more are being added all the time. PNGs have really become very important and simplify the work in the digital field of image design. But as I said – here again you find images that are already available on Pixabay or also on PngPix, which doesn’t make licensing any easier, because one offers CC0 completely free, the next offers the same image under CC0 4.0 and so on. So you ask yourself, which came first – the egg or the chicken?
Licence: pngimg.com bietet die PNGs ausschließlich unter Creative Commons by CC BY-NC 4.0 an. Hier ist keine Namensnennung erforderlich. Kommerzielle Nutzung: NEIN!
pngimg.com offers the PNGs exclusively under Creative Commons by CC BY-NC 4.0. No attribution is required here. Commercial use: NO!
4. My secret tip comes from the world’s largest artist platform deviantArt, where you will find the very talented “freesman” Jean from France. From my point of view, he is the master of object freezing. No, honestly – he has a wonderfully colourful portfolio full of super beautiful objects from all areas – even wax soldiers, old villages, castles, bridges, paths, whole gardens can be found in his portfolio. As well as toys, rides, towers…ah…really a smorgasbord of really great things that make the image editor’s heart beat faster. And the best thing is – Jean really enjoys cropping and gives away his materials for free and just wants to be mentioned for it. You can find Jean52 here: https://www.deviantart.com/jean52
Meanwhile, Jean is also on Pixabay with a smaller portfolio. Feel free to have a look there as well.
Licence: Unriscricted Stock – Do not forget, give credit and notify Translation: Unrestricted Stock – Do not forget, give credit and notify)
Addendum: You can also enter “freeuse”, “freetouse”, “publicdomain” or “free2use” in the DeviantArt search function. Then you will also be shown an incredible amount of material. Every artist has different requirements regarding the rights of use of their material. Please take note of this accordingly.
6. ClipartPNG – Incredibly large database crammed with clipart of all kinds, but also with advertising. Since I haven’t found a link here so far because of licensing conditions, but only links that you should use, I’m a little suspicious of the site. Nevertheless, I’m including it in my list, because here again many images from similar PNG sites seemed familiar to me. Primarily Pixabay again. 🙂
7. If you still haven’t found the PNG you want, take a look at PurePNG or maybe you’ll have to crop it yourself in the end! At PurePNG you will also find objects from…you guessed it…. Pixabay, but also from the PNG sites mentioned above.
Licence: CC0 Free images for free and commercial use!
8. By the way, you can also find PNGs via the Commons Wikimedia. Not directly obvious, but if you are looking in the vintage area, for example, it is also a very good database.
Licence: This is always included with each image and should be taken into account, as they can vary even within the same image page.
9. CLEANPNG – offers, like all PNG collection sites, many exempted objects from the databases already mentioned. To be on the safe side, the licensing on the part of the site operator is probably also “private use only”, although once again material from Pixabay is included.
To stay with my above picture example of a cat, the appropriate saying: No matter where you look…the cat bites its own tail. If you look for certain exempted objects, you will find them almost continuously on every page – only partly under different licence conditions.
10. Openclipart – a rich, freely accessible and free database with currently about 161,000 cliparts or vectors. Here I would like to present the really terrific cut-out images and vectors by GDJ. I know that he posts e.g. the vintage illustrations with a really fabulous quality. He can also be found on Pixabay. If you are looking for fascinating line art, vectors or cliparts for scrapbooking or otherwise, which are not always “mainstream”, you can download great objects from him. And he makes his “art” completely CC0 – so also for commercial use.
11. PNGWave – Also a database that sees itself as an open community and shares exempted objects from many areas. Of course, these are also for non-commercial use! But with a really chic picture forest that you can walk through for hours… 🙂
Die Lizenz besteht aus einem Text – wie folgt: PNGWave is an open community for users to share PNGs, all PNG images in PNGWave are for Non-Commercial Use, no attribution required. If you are the author and find this PNG is shared without your permisson, DMCA report please Contact Us.
12. freepik – Also a database that sees itself as an open community and shares exempted objects from many fields. Of course, these are also for non-commercial use! But with a really fancy picture forest that you can stroll through for hours… 🙂
13. pngtree – I still know pngtree as a small, fine site with a manageable collection of PNGs and vectors that was accessible without registration. In the meantime, pngtree has grown into a large provider with the option of a premium membership. The licence conditions are just as diverse as the offer, which has been expanded to include images and PSD files in addition to objects, clipart and vectors.
14. PNG also in my CC0-gallery 😉 🙂
Constant annoying request for a premium membership!!!
I had signed up for a test at pngtree some time ago and was immediately prompted with advertisements and invitations for premium membership. It flashes and flickers in front of my eyes, which I don’t like at all. For me personally a “no-go”, but as they say? Everyone has different tastes.
After I click away this intrusive advertisement and want to download a PNG, I see that the download number is limited to 2 images per day. Actually, you can’t throw me out any faster than that… 😉 But no matter – finally I wanted to report about the possibilities.
Lizenz,- und Nutzungsbedingungen bei pngtree
So if you have seen 2 pictures of the day’s ration, you look in any case (strongly advised) how the respective image is licensed. Some put it under CC0 (also commercially usable) and others with attribution. Still others, however, are only possible with premium account.
Result. For me personally, pngtree is no longer an option, but I wanted to have it at least included in the list, because after all I am not the measure of all things. 🙂
Or rather stock image portals for PNGs?
However, I know from my own experience. Even there, not all images are indeed from the author, because some content, for example, from my CC0 page has already been posted there. But that’s another story….
From there… who wants to go on the still “super totally safe side”, can’t avoid to do everything completely by himself. So only from own and self-photographed images to release the content.
Did you like my list of web pages with PNG – cropped objects for image editing?
Do you know any other web addresses or do you make PNGs freely available on the Internet under certain license conditions? Then write me with pleasure in the comment. I will check the content of the page and possibly add it to my list.
Dorothe / Darkmoon-Art
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