For a number of years now, whenever I’ve needed free high-resolution images for almost anything, I’ve turned to the awesome resource that is Unsplash.com. They have grown from a small blog featuring beautiful, royalty-free photography, to one of the world foremost visual communities. Originally born out of frustration with the stock media experiences of the time, the Unsplash license allows you to use any photos published on their platform for free, even for commercial purposes, without attribution! Just take a look at what their license says:
Unsplash grants you an irrevocable, nonexclusive, worldwide copyright license to download, copy, modify, distribute, perform, and use photos from Unsplash for free, including for commercial purposes, without permission from or attributing the photographer or Unsplash.
Very generous indeed! 👏 Beyond the sheer generosity, their platform has grown like crazy over the years. Along with tons of photographic content have come new features to help keep everything organized. You can create a free account and like photos or save them to named collections, public or private. It just makes things too easy when you are helping with a new small website and you can create a private collection of free, high-quality imagery and let the client know these are the actual images and they are all free to modify and use!
So I had maybe heard that Unsplash had some sort of API and filed that away in my mind for future exploration, but then last week a coding exercise I was watching on Youtube blazed right past a very interesting URL when calling a placeholder image. I hit rewind and watched again as the video mentioned source.unsplash.com in an image call. One look and I was in love! 😍 A quick git commit later and I am using the URL
https://source.unsplash.com/collection/8823888/1280x853 to call a random image scaled to the exact size I want, from a private collection I created and filled with beautiful, free-to-use photographs from incredibly talented photographers as the underlying background image on this very page.
How awesome is that?! I took those heavy images out of my lightweight git repository, my jekyll build, my minimal server hardware AND I get the benefit of adding in new 🖼 just by browsing through a beautiful platform and adding to my collection! So in summation, don’t be like me before yesterday 😯, be like me after discovering Unsplash’s awesome placeholder resource at source.unsplash.com/. 😎🔥💯