Clients reach out to graphic designers for particular design creation. To create visually powerful and compelling commercial design projects, royalty free photos are an incredible resource. However, there is a lot of confusion surrounding this topic, especially about the transfer of ownership of stock images. This article will, however, clear all doubts.

Most of the stock image agencies do not come clear about stock photos used in commissioned work. However, you should know that it is okay to use stock photos when hired by clients for designs. There is no offense in using royalty free photography when designing for a client or third party. Nonetheless, you must comply with the following.

Design for single end customer

The standard license of stock images permits you to design for single end clients. However, if you intend to utilise the image in serial-produced content for sale, you will require an Extended license.

The photo should be part of the design

You have the freedom to utilise stock images in content designed for the end user. You should do this as far as you use them as part of the design. It is regardless of whether you are resizing or cropping them or modifying or correcting elements or colours on them.

You should then deliver the designs in which the stock images are incorporated to the final user. However, you should be aware that you are not allowed to gift, sell or redistribute the exact stock image as downloaded from the source to any person.

Comply with specific stock agency license agreement

There are numerous stock agencies on the web. Each one of them comes with its terms and conditions. You should ensure that you comply with the terms and conditions of the unique agency you source the image from. In case you are uncertain about anything, contact the agency for more information.

In the case where your client wants to own the stock image you use on the design, let them buy the image themselves then forward to you to incorporate it into the design. Once you are done with the project, make sure you erase the photo and never use it elsewhere. I hope that all doubts surrounding this topic have been cleared. Cheers!!!

Where can I buy stock images?

There are many differents, and their policy and copyright rules are variate and so do the prices also. I self use Abobe Stock, ShutterStock and Dreamtime and in that order.