I spend waaaay too long hunting down awesome sites which offer amazing free printable images to use as wall art or in other crafty projects, especially those with beautiful antique or vintage high resolution graphics which can be effectively enlarged.
So take advantage of my (slightly) obsessive quest. Listed below are some of my absolute favourite online sources for free printables.
THE GRAPHICS FAIRY
For a huge range of beautiful vintage graphics. Many at large-scale or in high resolution. Visit the search page to browse by category.
FREE VINTAGE POSTERS
For hundreds of high quality vintage posters. Note, not all are actual poster size.
For some amazing (and a few unusual) high resolution vintage images. This site can be slow and a little tricky to navigate though there are some lovely images.
For thousands of downloadable large-scale botanical illustrations. This site is a vast digital library of historic botanical literature so much of the content is text. To find images, open a book and scroll to 'Plate' or 'Illustration' in the 'Pages' list. To download an image click the straight arrow icon in the navigation tab.
THE VINTAGE MOTH
For hundreds of antique and vintage graphics.
BIODIVERSITY HERITAGE LIBRARY
For a huge range of beautiful scientific flora and fauna illustrations.
AGRICULTURAL RESEARCH SERVICE
For over three hundred lovely scientific historic pear watercolours. Image links are displayed in a text-based table. To view thumbnails instead click the link at the top of the table.
NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY DIGITAL GALLERY
For thousands (upon thousands!) of free printables. Most images are at low resolution so can't be enlarged though are great for standard certificate sized frames and/or matting.
For thousands of gorgeous vintage images, many of them at high resolution (so able to be enlarged!). BibliOdyssey's images are all neatly stored in Peacay's Flickr stream. I definitely recommend checking this one out!
For links to databases carrying thousands of digitised historic maps. Start your search in the 'Images of Early Maps' link (in the left sidebar).
For hundreds of premium, large-scale digitised artworks. Although not free, this site offers some amazing high resolution images at affordable prices. Be sure to check out the Vintage Illustrated Posters and the 'Birds of America' museum quality illustrations.
OLD MAPS OF PARIS
For a lovely collection of copyright free antique maps of Paris. Some large scale.
DAVID RUMSEY MAP COLLECTION
For a huge collection of maps scanned at very high resolution. Registration is required to export maps at their full size (which is often larger than two meters!). Search for maps via this category page.
For forty lovely antique maps. A small donation is requested to download all maps at full resolution.