Skip to Main Content

Open Educational Resources Collective Publishing Workflow

Create and/or Curate Figures, Images and Multimedia

Finding Creative Commons Images and Multimedia to Use and Adapt

There are millions of resources – including photos, illustrations, videos, music and audio – available online with open licences. Below is a list of content platforms with Creative Commons options:



  • YouTube (You’ll need to limit your search to CC licensed materials)
  • Vimeo (You’ll need to limit your search to CC licensed materials).


For open textbooks and OER, see Find Open Textbooks to Use and Adapt.

Copyright for Images and Multimedia

Permissions for online content can range from no copyright (e.g. in the public domain) to Creative Commons licences to all rights reserved, so make sure you check the copyright before adding third-party images and multimedia to your textbook.

If you’re looking for content to adapt, it’s best to avoid Creative Commons licences with ‘NoDerivatives’ (ND) as this clause prohibits you from making and sharing any changes.

Most Creative Commons licences still require you to give proper attribution to the creator for any images and multimedia you use, so you’ll need to include this in the caption.

Remember to keep track of any third-party content you use in a spreadsheet like the University of Toronto’s OER Content Tracker, including:

  • copyright and licensing information
  • details of permissions requests
  • the date and location you found the resource.

Adding Images and Multimedia in Pressbooks

Pressbooks allows you to add media and interactive content including images, audio, videos and documents to your textbook.

While it’s best to edit images before adding them to your textbook, Pressbooks does provides some simple editing tools for resizing, cropping, scaling and replacing images and editing image details after upload.

Options for adding media in Pressbooks include:

This allows readers using the webbook version of your textbook to view and watch content without having to go to external sites.

Where embedded media can’t be displayed in the downloadable EPUB and PDF versions, Pressbooks inserts a link to the webbook version of the chapter where readers can view the missing element. Print readers will see a short URL they can type into their browser.


Adapted from:

Resources: Search and Find’ in Self-Publishing Guide by Lauri M. Aesoph, licensed under a CC BY 4.0 licence.

Legal Music for Videos’ by Creative Commons, licensed under a CC BY 4.0.

Edit Images’ and ‘Display Embedded Media’ in Pressbooks User Guide by Pressbooks, licensed under a CC BY 4.0.