• Stock images break down into two main types, royalty-free and rights-managed.
When designing a website, advertisement or presentation, images such as photographs, drawings and diagrams illustrate key points and messages, and add to the overall look and effectiveness. There are many sources of images available, including royalty-free images.
For royalty-free images, you get nearly unlimited use. You can use the image in virtually any application, for as long as you like, in as many different projects as you like, as long as you comply with the terms of the license agreement. The image is available to use from when you purchase a license. Following payment of the license fee, no additional royalty payments are owed.
With rights-managed images, your right to use the image is typically restricted, with limitations placed on things such as duration of use, geographic region, industry, etc., as established by your license agreement.
Can I use royalty-free images for free?
• No. Royalty-free means that once a license fee is paid, the images may be used many times without paying additional fees, but the initial license is necessary to protect yourself and your clients. When you license a royalty-free image, you can use it in nearly any application, for as long as you like, according to your license agreement (although some kinds of uses do require an extended license). The cost is often based on file size, the number of permitted users as well as other factors.
With royalty free images, the copyright remains the property of the artist or photographer who created the image. The licensing specifies how many times the image can be utilized and lists any restrictions for its use.
Many websites that offer royalty-free images allow users to purchase individual images or receive a discount for buying a set of images at one time. Some sites also allow users to download an unlimited number of images by paying a set fee each week, month or year.