How to use photos from Getty Images for free on your blog

Getty Images now offers an embed tool that allows photos to be used on a non-commercial site without a watermark

Getty Images has one of the largest photo libraries in the world, and the company recently made this library free to use for non-commercial purposes. You are now allowed to browse the Getty Images site for any photo you are after, and then embed that image on your Web page, or share it via Twitter and Tumbler, without the image having a watermark.

Here’s how it’s done.

First things first, you’ll need to direct your browser to the Getty Images Web site in order to search for the photo you’re after. For regular photos, you’ll need to tick on the Editorial Images option for your search. You can sort photos based on how recent they are, or just bring up the most popular ones.

Searching Getty for the right Sydney Kings image, which we can then use for free on a non-commercial site.
Searching Getty for the right Sydney Kings image, which we can then use for free on a non-commercial site.

In our example, we searched for photos of the Sydney Kings basketball team playing against the Perth Wildcats. This game occurred a few days before the writing of this guide. Immediately, we saw photos from Getty Images’ photographers, and there were plenty of action shots to select.

If we want to embed any photos in a personal or non-commercial blog post, all we have to do is click on the image to bring up the larger size, and look for the little tools underneath it.

The embed tool appears under the photo after you click on its thumbnail in the search results.
The embed tool appears under the photo after you click on its thumbnail in the search results.

We can click the icon with the two brackets to bring up the code for embedding the images in a blog. The code allows us to select the pixel width and height of our choice. It will appear without the Getty watermark obstructing the photo, and it will include the photographer’s credit at the bottom, as well as Getty Images’ embed and social media sharing tools. Furthermore, the image, when clicked, will link back to the Getty Images site, on which they are hosted.

You can get a preview of what the image will look like on your site.
You can get a preview of what the image will look like on your site.

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Elias Plastiras

Elias Plastiras

PC World


Oddbjørn Sjøgren


I think this is a very interesting move by Getty, and so far nicely implemented (although it's a difficult to find the files you can embed)

I think there is also a challenge with defining a "non-commercial blog post".

I'm the CTO of which launched a streaming service for commercial use months ago. Our model is quite different, since we actually pay our photographers, and also let them opt out. It's our belief that professional bloggers and website owners are willing to pay $9.90 per month for a superior product.

If you are interested, read more about our streaming service here:



YES! I'd like to second the defining "non-commercial blog post" challenge.

I'm actually chatting with a rep at Getty Images now trying to figure out if I can use these images in blog posts for clients. No straight answer yet.

Alex Goh


We have been doing embeds for about a year now, having Getty come in does excite us. Innovation in this space is definitely necessary -

Most importantly we use flattened jpgs to facilitate responsive designs and current CMS auto-generated thumbnails.

We aim to be a ethical-use marketplace, so our ethos might differ slightly from corporate Getty. Photographers strictly retain their rights and we only act as a facilitator. Free use is limited to 10,000 impressions but is allowable for commercial use. Our belief is that beyond 10k impressions, you are probably making enough that the photographer should be fairly compensated. While we might suggest image pricing, that is fully up to the image rights owners, giving them full control.

Arlen Lane


Unfortunately, free to use comes with strings attached. This is an excerpt from their terms and conditions "Getty Images (or third parties acting on its behalf) may collect data related to use of the Embedded Viewer and embedded Getty Images Content, and reserves the right to place advertisements in the Embedded Viewer or otherwise monetize its use without any compensation to you."

That being said, I would rather pay $9.90 per month to a service like then use the so called free service from Getty Images. Similarly, I would rather pay $0.99 to WhatsApp and know that my private data is safe.

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