29 Places to Find Free Stock Footage for Your Videos
Stock footage can be an amazing tool for anyone who needs to create videos. A few well-placed video shots can breathe life into your project. And while it’s not difficult to find lots of beautiful footage for sale online, tracking down free stock footage can be a little bit trickier.
But if you’re looking for stock footage and you’re on a shoestring budget, don’t worry – we’ve got you covered. Check out this ultimate list of 29 free stock footage sources, and you’ll be sure to find what you need.
“Stock footage” might sound generic or bland. Used skillfully, however, it can be anything but boring. Even major productions contain stock footage, so there’s no reason you shouldn’t use this resource to make your videos look great as well.
There are tons of situations in which video creators might need or want to use free stock footage. Here are just a few benefits you can gain from it.
- Using free stock video is cheaper and simpler than shooting your own, especially if you’re on a tight budget or production schedule. Hiring a camera crew is costly, and doing all your own filming can eat up a lot of time. It takes just a few seconds to download a stock clip.
- If you want to get footage of places you can’t visit yourself, stock footage is the way to go. For instance, thanks to other people’s uploads to the web, you can find clips of outer space and various well-known locations across the world without ever having to set foot there.
If you want to get footage of places you can’t visit yourself, stock footage is the way to go.
- Stock footage can be a useful shorthand for creating a mood, setting a scene, or conveying an idea. Even a few seconds of footage can get a viewer on the same page as you.
- Stock footage is ideal for smoothing out transitions and moving your video’s storyline along. If there are any gaps in your self-shot footage, stock footage can patch them without drawing attention to them.
Not all stock footage is created equal as far as legality goes. Of course, you can’t just grab any footage off the internet and use it in your own marketing – but even footage that’s been licensed for public use may come with a set of rules and regulations that you need to understand. Here are the main things you need to know before you start using stock footage in your own work.
You can’t just grab any footage off the internet and use it in your own marketing – but even footage that’s been licensed for public use may come with a set of rules and regulations that you need to understand.
Rights-Managed and Royalty-Free – What Do They Mean?
During your search for free stock footage, you’ll probably come across the terms “rights-managed” and “royalty-free.” These mean significantly different things.
If you download or buy royalty-free footage or images, you can use them as many times as you want, in just about whatever way you want – there are few restrictions. The content is considered yours after purchase or download, and you don’t have to pay royalties to the original creator.
Anybody can also download Royalty-free images, so other people and companies around the world may be using the same footage or images as you are.
Rights-managed content comes with a far stricter set of guidelines. These guidelines are laid down by the entity licensing the footage or image, so there are no hard-and-fast rules for what you will and won’t be allowed to do with the content.
However, you’ll probably be restricted in where, how many times, and for what purpose you can use the content. Rights-managed content is often more exclusive than royalty-free content, so you may be the only person using that footage or image. However, rights-managed content can also be quite expensive.
It’s generally a good idea to stay away from rights-managed content if you’re looking to keep things as simple and inexpensive as possible. Fortunately, if you’re looking for free stock footage, most of what you find will be royalty-free. It will also most likely carry a Creative Commons license.
So, what is it exactly?
Creative Commons Licenses Explained
A Creative Commons license is a type of copyright license that allows a piece of content to be distributed freely. However, just seeing the words “Creative Commons” on a piece of content doesn’t mean you can use it however you want. There are a number of different Creative Commons licenses that stipulate what you can and can’t do with a piece of content. Here’s a simple breakdown of the different types.
- CC0. CC0 is the most permissive license type that exists. It means “no rights reserved” – in other words, the content is in the public domain. You don’t have to credit the original creator if you use the work, and there are no restrictions on what you can do with it. For simplicity and a worry-free experience, CC0 stock footage is the best type to use.
For simplicity and a worry-free experience, CC0 stock footage is the best type to use.
- CC BY 4.0. This is an attribution license, which means you need to
1) give credit to the original creator of the work,
2) link to the license itself, and
3) specify whether you made any changes to the work.
On its own, this is pretty simple to do – if you aren’t sure how to give credit correctly, Creative Commons provides some easy-to-follow guidelines on their wiki. However, crediting can be a pain if you’re trying to keep things simple, and in some cases, it might distract viewers from your own marketing message.
Learn more about creative commons licenses on their official website
- CC BY-SA 4.0. This is a share-alike license. It carries the same restrictions as an attribution license. It also carries the stipulation that if you change or build upon the original content, you must distribute your own work under the same license as the original work.
- CC BY-NC 4.0. This is a non-commercial license. It carries the same restrictions as an attribution license. It also means that you cannot use the content (or any variations of the content) for commercial purposes. If you’re looking for footage or images to use in marketing videos, don’t use anything that carries this license.
- CC BY-ND 4.0. This is a no-derivatives license. It carries the same restrictions as an attribution license. You can use the original content however you want, even commercially, but if you change or alter the material in any way, you cannot share or distribute it publicly. This is another license type you should avoid while searching for stock footage.
In addition to understanding Creative Commons licenses, it’s also important to use your common sense. If you’re not sure about a clip’s licensing, try to get that information from the site owner or content creator, or just look for a different piece of footage.
And, while this goes without saying, don’t use stock footage or images to create offensive or discriminatory content. Many sites carry a disclaimer that their content can’t be used in this way, so it’s just a good practice to assume it’s true everywhere.
Now that you know what the different licenses mean, you’re ready to start searching for free stock footage! There are a lot of great free videos available, so if you’re willing to do a little digging, you’re sure to find what you need to take your videos to the next level.
We’ve done the legwork so you won’t have to. We went into full research mode to handpick the best websites for free stock footage for your video project. So, before you spend all your budget on shooting additional videos or buying expensive stock footage, here is a comprehensive list of free stock footage that you can use to fill the gaps.
Users of an online video maker Wave.video have access to the built-in 300+ million stock library of royalty-free photos and videos that they can use for creating videos. There are a lot of both free and paid video options, so you will always have a wide selection to choose from.
Why should you use Wave.video to find free stock footage?
These are a few reasons to use free stock footage from Wave.video.
- An endless collection
Wave.video continually extends its already massive collection of free stock footage. If you start your search, you won’t have to hop from website to website looking for stock videos anymore.
As a popular online video maker for regular people and different types of businesses, Wave.video curates a varied collection of free stock footage to satisfy its diverse users. No matter what you’re working on, you’ll find a few relevant footages on Wave.video.
- Easiest to Use
Another reason Wave.video is at the top of this list is how it sorts its extensive collection of free royalty footage to make it easier to find what you need. You can find videos related to technology, water, or the color Yellow in a few clicks. It also lets you see video previews when you hover over them on the search page.
- All-in-one tool
When you’ve selected your free stock footage, you can flex your creativity in the online video editor without downloading any additional software. It has an intuitive interface with multiple templates to help you complete your project in no time.
Pixabay is famous for its extensive library of stock photos, but they offer a great selection of free stock videos as well. All of their content is licensed under CC0.
Why should you use Pixabay?
Pixabay offers free stock footage that you can download at different resolutions and a powerful search engine to boot. The best part is that you may use the footage without requesting permission or giving credit to the authors.
Drawbacks of using Pixabay to find free stock footage
All the footage on Pixabay can be downloaded only in the MP4 format, and although it offers different resolutions, its collection of 4K footage is still limited. If you’re ad averse or on a limited budget, you may want to stay away from the first row of the search results that only show ads for other sites.
3. Pexels Videos
Pexels, like Pixabay, offers both stock photos and stock footage for free. All their content is licensed under CC0.
Why should you use Pexels to find free stock footage?
Pexels doesn’t require a subscription for you to browse and download high-quality footage in different resolutions. The videos don’t have a watermark and you can use them for commercial purposes. There are many good free stock footage choices in the Trending section.
Drawbacks of using Pexels for free stock footage
Because it was launched as a free stock photos website, it doesn’t have an expansive collection of free stock footage. It also has a very limited library of 4K resolution footage. The layout is difficult to use, and you can only see basic information about a video after you’ve clicked on it to go to a new page.
Videvo offers a large selection of stock footage and motion graphics for you to choose from. In return, they request that users give them a shout-out on social media, although this isn’t mandatory.
The content in Videvo’s library carries some restrictions, so check carefully before you download a clip. They currently offer content under three licenses:
- The Videvo Standard License means you can use the clip however you want, and you don’t have to provide credit. However, you’re not allowed to upload the footage as a stock clip to any other site.
- The Videvo Attribution License means, in addition to the restrictions above, that you must provide credit to the original creator when using the content.
- The CC BY 3.0 license is a slightly older version of the current Creative Commons attribution license. It carries the same restrictions as the current attribution license.
Why should you use Videvo to find free stock footage?
Videvo has over 80,000 free stock footage and motion graphics clips uploaded by different creators and handpicked by an in-house team. The clips are properly tagged, so you don’t spend hours scrolling for the perfect clip.
Drawbacks of using Videvo for free stock footage
Some of Videvo’s 10-second clips have watermarks, although you don’t have to attribute. It also offers a paid plan for a small number of premium videos per month, starting at $14.99. About 75% of the footage requires attribution, and some can’t be used commercially, so be sure to read the license for every video.
Videezy has tons of beautiful, free HD and 4K videos in many categories for you to browse. They also offer some pro content that costs money. Not all of their clips are licensed under CC0, so make sure to click “License info” on each individual clip’s page to find out how you can use it.
Why should you use Videvo to find free stock footage?
Videezy’s growing collection of free stock footage continues to make filmmaking easier and more affordable, and it also lets you interact with other filmmakers. You have access to MP4 and MOV formats for footage and a good collection of drone footage and 4K clips.
Drawbacks of using Videvo for free stock footage
If you don’t want to attribute, then Videzy is not for you since all its free stock footage requires attribution. It has a pricey credit system that charges $19 or $4.90 per file, depending on how much you purchase.
Although at first glance, CuteStockFootage doesn’t seem like a major contender, it has a lot to offer users. The site may not have the best layout, but it can be sorted in one click, and it’s responsive search feature enhances the experiences.
Why should you use CuteStockFootage to find free stock footage?
In addition to free stock videos, CuteStockFootage also offers a variety of other goodies – like photos, audio clips, fonts, and textures – under the “Free Resources” tab in their menu. Just be sure to select Video Footage to exclude all other resources on the search page.
Drawbacks of using CuteStockFootage for free stock footage
If you use any footage from CuteStockFootage, you have to add a visible credit link to CuteStockFootage.com. Its CC BY-NC 4.0 license may allow you to remix and transform the footage, but it prevents you from using it for commercial purposes. CuteStockFootage doesn’t offer flexibility on footage resolution, and 4K footages are not available.
MotionPlaces is another great source of free stock footage. The videos are conveniently organized by locations and themes in the menu. In order to be able to download a video, you’ll need to enter your email address.
Why should you use MotionPlaces to find free stock footage?
MotionPlaces is your go-to website for free stock footage of different places, historical sites, and beautiful landscapes around the world. This is reflected in its unique homepage design that enables you to browse footage by location.
Drawbacks of using MotionPlaces for free stock footage
An email sign up is required to use this website, and attribution is mandatory except for 4K resolution footage that costs $99.
Why should you use Vidsplay to find free stock footage?
All the stock footage are free and more videos are added weekly. New content is added weekly, and they are easy to download without paying royalties or creating an account.
Drawbacks of using Vidsplay for free stock footage
Vidsplay has a lot of categories to choose from, but only a few videos in each. You should look elsewhere for 4K videos if your project requires one because Vidsplay does not carry any. Also, be prepared for a few Shutterstock ads.
9. Bottled Video
Bottled Video offers 640×480 video clips for free, as well as HD and 4K footage that you can purchase. They ask that you credit their site after using their material.
Why should you use Bottled Video to find free stock footage?
Bottled Video is a descendant of Wrightwood.com, the first royalty-free stock footage website. Since 1995, their videos have been used in Award-winning productions. It aims to provide those quality footage at an affordable price.
Drawbacks of using Bottled Video for free stock footage
While the Bottled Video library is fairly extensive, downloading from this site can be difficult because spammers have abused the site’s services over the years. As a result, the site owners have created an algorithm that increases the “free” footage’s cost to $2 when they detect too much suspicious activity (the clips later go back to being free).
Pro tip: If there’s a clip you really want that isn’t currently free, it may be worth checking back later. However, because of this additional hassle, this might not be the best stock footage site to explore first.
10. Ignite Motion
Need a background for your video? Ignite Motion has you covered. They appreciate – but don’t require – credit from people who use their clips.
Why should you use Ignite Motion to find free stock footage?
Ignite Motion is one of those free stock footage websites that focus entirely on one type of footage, so you know just what to expect. In the case of Ignite, you can get a variety of background videos for your project. Check it out to see if your project could use a background video from the over 22 categories it covers.
Drawbacks of using Ignite Motion for free stock footage
Although it focuses on background videos only, it doesn’t have that many videos in total across the website.
If you’re looking for gorgeous, cinematic HD footage, take a look through Mazwai’s library. Their minimalistic grid layout means you might be scrolling for a while to find what you need, but the clips are so high-quality that you probably won’t mind. Most of Mazwai’s footage is licensed under an attribution license.
Why should you use Mazwai to find free stock footage?
- You can trim videos before downloading them
- Displays key information and plays a preview on hover
- 2-3 minutes long footages
- No download limit
Drawbacks of using Mazwai for free stock footage
- No Ultra HD (4K) footages
- Fixed resolutions
- Requires attribution
- Less than 1000 free stock footage
12. Motion Elements
MotionElements currently offers upwards of 3000 free stock videos, and they post new ones every week. They also have a larger selection of footage available for purchase, as well as other content like images, GIFs, and audio clips. They require a credit back to their site if you use their work.
Why should you use Motion Elements to find free stock footage?
- No attribution required
- Download HD videos in three formats
Drawbacks of using Motion Elements for free stock footage
- Email signup required
- Five free downloads per week max
13. Nature Stock Videos
As it says on the tin, Nature Stock Videos offer a nice collection of nature videos: rivers, waterfalls, beaches, and more. If you need a great background video for your website or you’re making a social media video, Nature Stock Videos are a great place to get your free stock footage.
Why should you use Nature Stock Videos to find free stock footage?
- Niche stock footage website
- Creative Commons Zero license so you can do anything with the footage.
- Free UHD footages
14. Production Crate
Production Crate puts a lot of resources – like stock footage, special effects, templates, and audio – right at your fingertips. It’s free to use, but you will need to make an account. Free accounts are limited to five downloads per day.
Production Crate requests that people with free accounts provide attribution when using the site’s content, but they don’t legally require it.
Why should you use Production Crate to find free stock footage?
- It offers other production-ready assets, including effects, textures, and royalty-free music.
- Thousands of content across multi-level categories
Drawbacks of using Production Crate for free stock footage
- Loads more footages and assets on a Pro plan at $4.08 per month
- Limited to 5 downloads per day on Free plan
15. Free HD Stock Footage on Vimeo
This Vimeo group has 258 free videos to choose from, all created by Vimeo user Phil Fried. New videos are uploaded sporadically. The licensing type for these videos isn’t specified.
Why should you use Vimeo to find free stock footage?
- Footage quality is assured.
- Use as you see fit.
Drawbacks of using Vimeo for free stock footage
- Lack of proper tagging makes finding the perfect footage a daunting task
- It is not updated frequently.
Coverr offers lots of eye-pleasing videos that you can use on your website’s homepage. They update the site with seven new videos every Monday. You can use videos from Coverr however you want, with the exception of reselling them or posting them on other stock footage sites.
Why should you use Coverr to find free stock footage?
- No attribution required
- A category dedicated to vertical videos
- A video thumbnail image is included in the download
- Embed video feature
Drawbacks of using Coverr for free stock footage
- No 4K footage
- Small collection of free stock footage
17. Life of Vids
Life of Vids is run by Leeroy, a digital agency based in Montreal. While the footage selection on this site is somewhat limited, the clips are very attractive. They have lots of good aerial shots available for download. Licensing information isn’t provided on the site, although the owners stipulate that users can redistribute a maximum of 10 videos on other sites.
Why should you use Life of Vids to find free stock footage?
- New free stock footages every week
- Free to use for persona and commercial use
Drawbacks of using Life of Vids for free stock footage
- Poor search functionality
- Ten video redistribution limit per user
SplitShire is the brainchild of web designer Daniel Nanescu, who wanted to share his collection of free stock photos and videos with the world. The only restrictions on what you can do with the content: you may not resell it, upload it to other stock websites, or create anything offensive with it.
Why should you use SplitShire to find free stock footage?
- No registration or attribution required
- Great for aerial footage
Drawbacks of using SplitShire for free stock footage
- No search functionality
- Videos are hosted on YouTube
- Doesn’t show video preview
19. Motion Backgrounds
As the name implies, Motion Backgrounds website provides free motion backgrounds. You can use them for whatever you want – there are no restrictions. You’re also not obligated to credit the site.
Why should you use Motion Backgrounds to find free stock footage?
- No need to give credit
- You can use the footages for commercial purposes
Drawbacks of using Motion Backgrounds for free stock footage
- Server downtime
Clipstill is a collection of amazing free cinemagraphs. If you are not sure what a cinemagraph is, it’s an animated image where only part of the picture is moving.
Why should you use Clipstill to find free stock footage?
- Alternative to tradition stock footage
- Updated monthly
Drawbacks of using Clipstill for free stock footage
- Small library
- $49 subscription fee to download all cinemagraphs
21. Dareful (formerly Stock Footage 4 Free)
On Dareful, you’ll find free clips in a wide variety of categories, from nature to transportation to sports. New clips are usually added every weekly, so check back frequently.
Users must create an account before downloading free stock footage. Since their rebranding, you are now obligated to provide credit when using footage from this site.
Why should you use Dareful to find free stock footage?
- It has a variety of free stock footage, including time-lapse and slow-motion clips.
- Unlimited downloads
- Completely free
Drawbacks of using Dareful for free stock footage
- Only MOV format for HD videos
- Email signup required
22. Beachfront B-Roll
Beachfront B-Roll is a video blog that offers HD stock footage and animated backgrounds. Because of the format, you may have to hunt a little to find what you’re looking for here, although the site does let you choose a category to browse at the top of the page.
The site’s content is unique, though, so it’s worth taking a look. The footage here is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license, so you’ll need to provide credit if you use the work.
Why should you use Beachfront B-Roll to find free stock footage?
- Free with no attribution
- It is hosted on YouTube for easy embedding.
Drawbacks of using Beachfront B-Roll for free stock footage
- Small collection of footage
- Not enough information about the footage
23. Mitch Martinez
If you’re searching for 4K footage, look no further than this site. While it doesn’t appear to be updated anymore, there are still plenty of videos in numerous categories for you to browse. If you’re planning to use a clip in a commercial project, you will need to complete a release form first.
Why should you use Mitch Martinez to find free stock footage?
- Almost all its footage are free and in 4K resolution.
- Download all 30GB of footage in one click for $99
Drawbacks of using Mitch Martinez for free stock footage
- You have to request and sign a license agreement before using footage commercially.
- ProRes or original R3D format is for sale.
24. Pond5 Free Video Footage
Pond5 charges for most of their footage, but they do offer free older footage as well. All of these clips are in the public domain.
Why should you use Pond5 to find free stock footage?
- One of the largest libraries with about 20 million clips and over 10,000 free stock footage.
- Flexible resolution options going as high as 4K
Drawbacks of using Pond5 for free stock footage
- New videos are quite expensive
- HD videos start at $25
25. Fancy Footage Club
Why should you use Fancy Footage Club to find free stock footage?
- Thumbnail image included in Dropbox
Drawbacks of using Fancy Footage Club for free stock footage
- Unclear licensing. Footage licensing agreement links to a website that isn’t up.
- Impossible to sort the small library of 60 videos by anything apart from the file name
- Library last updated in 2016
26. Movie Tools
At MovieTools you can download free loops and backgrounds to use in your own non-commercial videos. Their selection isn’t large, but you may still be able to find something useful here. If you want to use any of these clips for commercial purposes, you’ll need to download the HD version for a fee.
Why should you use Movie Tools to find free stock footage?
- Wish A Loop feature to request a loop that fits your project
- Free Loops can be used commercially.
Drawbacks of using Movie Tools for free stock footage
- No free HD loops
Not everything on Monzoom is free, but they do have a freebies page that consists mostly of backgrounds and intros. Users aren’t required to credit the site.
Why should you use Monzoom to find free stock footage?
Free video assets in multiple categories, including intros, transitions, and overlays
Drawbacks of using Monzoom for free stock footage
- Sign-in required to download freebies
- Premium plans for HD and 4K videos starting at $19 per month
28. Clip Canvas
Clip Canvas offers 170 free stock videos. They also have a larger library of footage available for purchase. You don’t need to provide attribution if you use their clips.
Why should you use Clip Canvas to find free stock footage?
- Discount for repeat customers
- No need to provide attribution
Drawbacks of using Clip Canvas for free stock footage
- Paid videos start at $79 per video
OpenFootage has a good selection of nature, time-lapse, and abstract videos on their site. You can download the low-resolution versions of these videos for free. Higher-quality versions carry a fee. Free downloads are licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution license.
Why should you use OpenFootage to find free stock footage?
- Medium-sized library of video assets
Drawbacks of using OpenFootage for free stock footage
- No free HD footage
Bonus Source – Mixkit
Mixkit is a great stock footage site for video creators with new clips added every week.
Free stock footage can save you time and energy while making your videos look better. And since so much of it is 100% free, it can also help you allocate your video funds more wisely, no matter how big or small your budget is. With all these resources available to you, why not start working on your next video project today?