When I say I want a free image, I'm not saying I only want it free of copyright like Gettyimages or Shutterstock would have you believe. I mean, I don't want to pay any money for that free of copyright image.
A great resource is the following blogpost on designskilz that lists 30 sites that offer free images. http://www.designskilz.com/free-photos/
With thirty plus choices, you'd think I could find a picture of someone showing surprise. Well, it was surprisingly difficult.
Many of the sites give categories and do a great job at sweeping landscapes which could be used for awesome background shots, but either they don't have a search bar for individual concepts or don't do emotions. Here's a few I liked-
Jay Mantri has incredible landscapes
Gratisography has whimiscal and artistic photos that are impressive but the selection is limited
Life of Pix has a good search bar but gave me a mountain goat when I searched for a baby.
Skitterphoto has a good number of photos but was a little hard to search
Splitshire was the same.
Unsplash is probably the best and easiest to search, but it had 0 search results for surprise or shock
After a few hours of searching these 30 sites for an image of surprise, and in the middle of the night, I turned to my teenage son and asked him to pose with me for a blurry shot from my webcam. Here is my surprise picture. (It looks a little like we're Zombies.)
BUT, if I had only known. The next morning I learned that BING has a license free option on their image searches. What does this mean???
Life has returned to the days when people took Google Images and used them wherever they wanted, only now it's in BING. Sure, you have to make sure you only use the ones tagged free of rights, but it's a faster, better way to search. All you do is enter what you want in Bing.com. Once your results come up, look at the options. Click under license...
... the drop down gives you a choice of "free to share and use commercially" which knocks out all the images you can't use and, BING-O, there's your pictures. Look at my surprise now.
To think I used to hate this search engine. Now my feelings are totally changed! What a surprise!!! Go BING!
P.S. Google does have this option but it's hidden under advanced search and takes a few more clicks. Still I like Bing better. I NEVER thought I'd say that.