Public domain images, audio and video

Often we need images for lesson use or student activities and need them quickly. For example, dropping them into a ComicLife poster. Educational institutions pay a body called CAL a lot of money so that students can use any images, music and video they find appropriate for use in the school boundaries. So basically the only stipulation teachers have to be aware of is to make sure usage doesn’t include media that would be posted on the school website, outside school boundaries or distributed commercially. A school newsletter for example could not contain copyright images. Whereas a video about reptiles made by students using copyright material could be shown in class. One regular pitfall that primary students have is that they source images that are too small. Rather than having students use Google search which link to websites that CAL will charge us for, there are numerous websites that offer quality media for open usage.

Please find below links to public domain images, audio and video for teacher use (and supervised student use). If you have any other idea, opinions or comments about public domain websites please add a comment below:


NEW* - flickrCC
easy way to search for CC images on Flickr

Burning Well
Open-source images

BurningWell is a repository for public domain (free for any use) images. You are free to download, copy and use the photos you find here for any purpose.

Find Media | Creative Commons

The Creative Commons search engine will help you find photos, music, text, books, educational material, and more that is free to share or build upon.

Morgue File

The term “morgue file” is popular in the newspaper business to describe the file that holds past issues flats. These are for use of reference. This morgue file contains free high resolution digital stock photography for either corporate or public use.


A free resource for finding legal, images

In the ‘image’ directory you can expect free high resolution images of objects, places, animals, mechanics, insects, signs, circuits and plants etc.

Picture Australia

Search Australia’s major historical picture collections. View what individual Australians are adding to the collection.

Classroom clipart

Wide selection, organised in categories. Includes animations and keyword search.


Choose from the galleries or use Advanced Search.

Black & white clipart

Black and white clipart of mammals, birds, insects and fish.


A selection of colour and black and white images. Wide selection of categories. Includes animations.


ccMixter - mix others music into your own

This is a community music site featuring remixes licensed under Creative Commons

Royalty Free Music, Sound Effects, & Music Loops
Royalty Free Music and Sound Effects plus free music loops, free sound effects, free midi files and free audio software

Open Media Directory | Ourmedia
A free resource for finding legal, podsafe music and video

The Freesound Project

The Freesound Project is a collaborative database of Creative Commons licensed sounds. Freesound focusses only on sound, not songs.

Welcome to, a free site where you can search the Web for sound effects and musical instrument samples.


Video from Creative Archive Licence Group
The BBC, the bfi, Channel 4 and the Open University set up the Creative Archive Licence Group to make their content available for download under the terms of the Creative Archive Licence.

Internet Movie Archive

Welcome to the Archive’s Moving Images library of free movies, films, and video.

Open Media Directory | Ourmedia

A free resource for finding legal, podsafe videoIf you have any suggestions for other public domain resources I’d love to include them here.

Image by Sushla via Creative Commons License.

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