Military Stock Photo Resources

Stock photography from commercial sources is the way professional publications, movies, and television programs get their images.

Corbis Digital Image of a tank on a Belgian road during World War II.
Corbis Digital Image of a tank on a Belgian road during World War II.

Even if the image is available from a government source it may be quicker and easier to use a commercial vendor to service your needs, especially if time is the most important factor for your project. This page of Olive-Drab.com presents many of the best sources for military images.

Today in WW II: 9 Dec 1940 British North African offensive begins against Italian forces in Somaliland, Egypt and Libya.  More 
9 Dec 1941 HMS Prince of Wales and HMS Repulse sunk by Japanese air attacks of Malayan coast.
9 Dec 1942 Renewed attacks by Australian forces break through and take Gona Village, Papua New Guinea.
9 Dec 1945 Gen. George S. Patton, Jr. severely injured in a collision between his staff car and an Army truck, while on a hunting trip in the country outside Mannheim, Germany.
Visit the Olive-Drab.com World War II Timeline for day-by-day events 1939-1945! See also WW2 Books.

Commercial Sources of Military Stock Photos

In the Olive-Drab.com Gallery, you will find many photos of military subjects such as vehicles, personnel, aircraft and equipment as well as historical posters and other items. The Gallery is growing all the time. Most of the Gallery images are available for low cost download.

Arms Communications Inc is one of the best stock photography agencies in the business today, with a special emphasis in military photos.With a library of over 150,000 plus images that special picture needed for your next or current project can probably be found at ARMS. P.O. Box 4779, Woodbridge, Virginia 21494-4779. 703-690-5987, 703-490-3298 fax. info@armscomm.com

BareWalls.com Posters and Prints has been offering art prints, wall art, framed art, and home decor since 1996. Their collection includes an extensive military selection at the link.

The Burns Archive War Collection consists of photographs taken of all major and many minor confrontations from the Crimean War through Vietnam. The archive has world class accumulations of images, including unique special albums of The Civil War, Spanish American War, Philippine Insurrection, Boer War, Boxer Rebellion, Mexican Revolution, WWI and WWII.

Buyout Footage specializes in broadcast quality, royalty free and public domain stock footage of newsreels, military and historical subjects. Preview and purchase directly from the web site.

Can Stock Photo allows users to browse their collection of over 100,000 military related photos, images, and clip art. Use the search bar to search by a specific war or military branch to discover even more results.

Andrew Chittock War Photographer offers his own unique images from Bosnia, Kosovo, Sierra Leone. Afghanistan and Iraq among other places.

Corbis Digital Pictures, the largest image source on the web (owned by Bill Gates), has collections of both free and royalty-required photos. Their collection of about 20 million images combines some of the largest archives in the world, available in high-resolution professional formats or in format suitable for web use.

Enygma Graphics offers high quality colour photographs of restored and preserved World War II military vehicles in museums and private collections throughout the UK. Contemporary pictures of World War II military vehicles in action in various theatres throughout the world during WWII.

Foto Search Stock Photos allows users to search from more than fifty quality stock photography vendors at one site. They can also find clipart pictures, royalty-free illustrations, royalty-free motion stock video clips, royalty free vector maps, and background clip art imagery. Foto Search Stock Photos is the #1 stock photography portal as measured by Alexa.com.

An extensive library of Military Posters and Images are available in the FreeArt.com Military Collection. Small size is free or they will professionally print large sizes for a fee. Many options.

GoGraph offers high-quality royalty free stock photography, vectors, illustrations, graphics, and stock footage at low prices. More than 18 million stock photos available including many military subjects.

The Hulton Archive is an on-line collection of over 250,000 still and motion picture images plus artwork and other creative content. Many historical military images can be found by their search function and the images can be ordered on-line.

Keystone Press Agency was founded in the early 1900’s in London, and today has accumulated an extensive collection, including over 1.5 million black and white, and over 2 million color images covering all topics including war and the military. You can search and order on-line.

Military Stock Photography is the action-packed archive of images featuring modern armed forces, including extensive coverage of the US Army, Navy, Air Force, Marine Corps, British Army and Russian Air Force. These photographs are available to graphic arts professionals at stock photography rates. Military Stock Photography includes all aspects of the modern armed forces — tanks, troops, fighter jets, helicopters, logistics support vehicles, technology and computers, Green Berets and Navy SEALs, small arms and crew served weapons. Model released photographs of military personnel are available for use in advertising and promotion.

Pathe newsreels played in cinemas from 1910 to 1970 and carried the news of two world wars. 3,500 hours of newsreel footage has been put online for internet users with a search engine to find who or what you want to see. Previews are free and hi-res copies can be purchased.

Photovault has a large collection of military stock photography (covering all branches of the services) available for license. Their web site includes search capability to find the exact photo you need.

Pictures Now (Wood River Media, Inc.) offers a huge, searchable on-line library of photos, poster, art and other graphics many of which are on military subjects. Use their search engine to find current and historical materials such as WW II propoganda posters, tank and aircraft photos, and much more. All graphics can be downloaded free for personal use.

Webshots has established a community of photo albums taken/owned by individuals who display them in the Webshots format. You can search several different ways (Webshots Gallery, Webshots Community, etc.) among hundreds of thousands of the private photos. To use the photos, you would have to contact the individual owners. Many military topics and type of subject matter are represented from WW II stock photos to current snapshots.

World Defense Pictures has galleries of army, air force, navy, and news photos from all over the world, with good quality photos of military hardware.

Find More Information on the Internet

There are many fine websites that have additional information on this topic, too many to list here and too many to keep up with as they come and go. Use this Google web search form to get an up to date report of what's out there.

For good results, try entering this: military photos. Then click the Search button.