When an image collection is as extensive as the one found at MorgueFile.com, there is little need to look elsewhere for free stock photos. In fact, the more than 35,000 pictures found here are remarkably easy to use. Each one is rendered in high resolution, and there is never a need to attribute the creator of the image. The staff at MorgueFile provides other services on a fee basis, making this a particularly useful archive.
MorgueFile has the distinction of being one of the earliest online photo archives. Michael Connors first brought the collection to the Internet in 1996, and he and his staff haven't stopped adding to it since. Connors is based in the New York City area where he works as a freelance graphic artist. His resume also includes entries for illustrations, animation, typography, photography and computer programming.When Connors began MorgueFile all those years ago, he envisioned it as a resource for creative professionals and teachers. His hope was that it would function as a marketplace for the free exchange of images. That is the purpose that MorgueFile has fulfilled in all of the years since. Today, the collection contains images captured by both amateur and professional photographers all over the world. Each photo can be used for personal or commercial purposes without the need for attribution.
The Origin of Morgue File
Most people who are new to the website wonder if its name has some kind of morbid connection. However, the name is merely drawn from a term that is often used by criminal investigators and reporters. Traditionally, a morgue file was a paper folder that contained notes, correspondence, newspaper articles, photos and other pertinent information about a person, crime or other event. "Morgue file" has also been used to describe the file for a completed project or an artist's collection of reference drawings or photos. With this knowledge, it's easy to see why Connors chose this name for his website.
Whether users plan to download a single image or dozens of photos on a daily basis, it's worthwhile to register with the website. Membership is free and makes it possible to receive interesting updates. It also enables use of the MorgueFile mobile app, which is useful for on-the-go people. Those who join the website are also encouraged to upload their own photos to be shared with other users.
Some users may also opt to upgrade to a pro account. This requires a $25 payment for a subscription period of one year. The pro account enables the functionality to edit available images with filters and other enhancements. Pro users can also categorize their images in unique "boxes" to make it easier to find what they're looking for. Other perks of the pro account are being able to review a history of downloads and gaining access to past monthly image packs. MorgueFile emails a free selection of images every month to members who sign up for the service. When you have a pro account, you'll receive the new collections as well as having access to past collections.
Morguefile also offers a fun daily quest that challenges contributors to capture everyday objects in a creative new light. Users are able to propose their own quest ideas, and the resulting photographs become a part of the collection. Anyone who needs a photograph of a specific subject might consider generating a daily quest that inspires photographers around the world to try to come up with the most striking image. It's just one more way that people can maximize the usefulness of this archive.
Connors and his team have housed their collection in a format that is remarkably easy to use. A simple search bar at the top of the main page can be used to enter any kind of query. When someone enters a word like "dog" or "balloon," they are instantly rewarded with dozens of relevant search results. Helpfully, the website administrators and photographers who upload their work are able to attach a number of keywords to every image. This makes it far more likely for users to be able to come up with precise results. For instance, searching "balloon" yields results that include helium balloons, thought bubbles and hot air balloons. More precise results can be achieved by choosing "balloon" and "hot air" as filters in the search bar.
Clicking on an individual image provides useful information regarding when the photo was first uploaded to MorgueFile and the number of times it has been viewed and downloaded. Sizing information is provided too, which could be quite informative for people who are working on very specific projects.
Another MorgueFile feature that is extremely helpful for routine users is the ability to search by creator. This means that if a user particularly enjoys the work of one photographer, they can search for that creator to discover all of their work. Even better, it's possible to follow favorite creators so that regular users can keep up-to-date with new additions to their collection. This can be particularly advantageous for people who are cultivating a certain look or mood for a website or other project.
MorgueFile is an amazing resource for people who need a multitude of free images. Nice perks can be had for a modest, once-a-year payment, but this definitely isn't necessary. Even people who don't want to pay a penny for stock photos will find plenty of quality work to choose from here. Keep in mind that this collection is not curated. This means that anyone can upload photos for use by others. Accordingly, while most of the images are of excellent quality and composition others may be more artistically questionable. Nonetheless, this robust archive is guaranteed to have something for everyone.