Why should you source on Flickr?

Flickr is an image and video-hosting website. It’s a place meant for professional photographers or videographers to showcase their work and network with other creative people. Some of them just use it as a place to host images that they’d like to embed on their blogs or websites.

If you are looking for a part-time or full-time photographer or videographer for your organization, Flickr is your treasure chest. Here are three top reasons recruiters should use Flickr:

  • Simply because not everybody does it and you have an edge if you do it.
  • It’s a great shortcut to a pool of creative people - photographers, videographers, art directors, etc.
  • You found this page. Which means, you are a few minutes away from becoming a fantastic Flickr recruiter.

Some numbers to back our sourcing case 


million Flickr registered users


million Flickr registered photographers


different countries have Flickr users

How to find candidates on Flickr

There are two ways to explore the Flickr website for candidates - a) The Flickr search b) The X ray search or the Boolean search.

The Flickr search 

The flickr search enables you to look for photos, people and groups.
Let’s say we are looking for a designer on Flickr. You can simply navigate to the search box and type in “designer”. The search will return all Flickr user profiles that include the words “designer” somewhere in their profiles. To narrow your search, you can go ahead and add location or any other details you would like to filter by.

The Flickr search is enough when you are running simple searches using two or three keywords. If you want to perform more efficient or advanced searches with more combinations, then Boolean search is the way to go.

X ray search 

On Flickr, you can either target individual members, or you can first target a group and then an individual member within the group. The three basic operators you’ll need during an X ray search are site:, inurl:, and intext:.

Example 1: Let’s say you want to find a photographer from France. The search string will start with the site: operator and then accommodate the other combinations. Here’s how it will look:

site:flickr.com "photographer"  "France" (a more complicated version would be site:flickr.com inurl:people designer)

Example 2: Let’s say you want to find a videographer from France who owns a  website so you can check out their work and history more thoroughly. Here’s what your search string will look like:

site:flickr.com "videographer" "website" "France"
The above string will return the profiles of all videographers who have the word 'website' on their profile. So you can further refine this search by adding an intext: operator. 

site:flickr.com "videographer" "website" "France" (intext:www OR intext:http OR intext:https) 

You can work in more combinations based on your requirements.
site:flickr.com "people" (photographer OR videographer) (city*France OR Gent OR Brussels OR Antwerp) (“website” intext:www OR intext:http OR intext:https) (Joined May 2020) (group*photographers tribe)
If you noticed, we added two more words into the string 'joined' and 'group'. The “joined” part of the string will return all users who joined in May 2020. You can also search for user who joined Flickr throughout that year by replacing the name of the month by an asterix - (Joined * 2020)

The “group” part of the string helps you to target a particular group and look for users within the group. This is a great way to narrow your search based on your requirement specifics and find a pool of members you can reach out to. Note, you can only perform searches within a group if you are a member. So, you’ll have to find groups, request to join and then perform searches. You can easily find them using the Flickr group search option on the Flickr search field.

These are just some basic strings which will help you see the beginning of endless search possibilities. Flickr is an amazing place to recruit for your creative teams. If you spend a few minutes getting to know the site and throwing in some search strings, you’ll just bring yourself some recruiting treasure.