Flickr Search

You can search Flickr for three basic things: photos/videos, people, and groups.  Since photos/videos is primarily what Flickr is about, you will have the most options for narrowing down your search results there.  However, you will also have a few options for sorting and filtering the groups that you search for.

How to search Flickr

  1. Go to and (optionally) log in.

  2. Click in the search box in the upper-right corner labelled "Photos, People, or Groups" and type in what you're looking for.  Then, click the magnifying glass icon or press the "Enter" key on your keyboard.

    The Flickr search box

  3. By default, you will be searching for Photos; click this if you are searching for something else to go back to searching for photos.  All of your results are displayed on the same screen; simply scroll down for more results.

    Flickr photo search options

    Click the drop-down menu that says "Any License" to select a certain category of licensed photos to search for.  Depending on the license of the photo, you may be able to modify or use it under certain conditions (as is the case with certain Creative-Commons-licensed photos).

    Click the drop-down menu that says "SafeSearch Off" to decide what safety rating of photos you want to see.  On results in you only seeing "Public"-rated photos, Moderate means that you can see "Moderate"-rated photos, and "Off" allows you to see "Restricted"-rating photos.

    Click a colour to see photos are primarily that colour, or click a pattern to see only photos that use that particular technique.

    Click Advanced for more filtering options (shown here), such as photo orientation, minimum size, capture date, whether you're searching for photos and/or videos, and whether you're searching for your keywords everywhere on Flickr or just in "tags".

    Finally, click the drop-down menu labelled "Relevance" to sort your results by how close they match your search terms, when they were captured, or how popular they are among other Flickr users.

  4. To search for other Flickr users, click People.

    Search for people on Flickr

    Click on a user's name to visit their profile, or click the Follow button to track their activity on Flickr (including what they upload and what comments others leave on their photos).

  5. If you're looking for groups on Flickr, click Groups.  (See our Flickr Groups tutorial for more on these.)

    Search for Flickr groups

    Click the check box beside "Hide Inactive Groups" to show or hide groups with few members or little recent activity.  You can also click the drop-down menu marked "Relevant" and choose to sort groups by:

    – how closely they match your search terms
    – their names (in alphabetical order)
    – how recently activity has occurred on them
    – how many members are in the group
    – how long ago the group was formed

    Click on a group's name to go to its profile page (or click the icons below it to immediately see its members, photos, or discussions), or click Join to ask to join the group.

Those are the basics of searching on Flickr!

How to Download Photos from Flickr

While there is no straightforward way to download other people’s pictures from Flickr (though, if they have a Creative Commons license, you may be allowed to), you can easily download any pictures or videos from Flickr that you’ve uploaded yourself.  This is handy if, for instance, you accidentally lose or delete the original copies of the files on your device, and need to replace them. So, to download photos you’ve added to Flickr:

  1. Go to in your web browser and log in.

  2. Move your mouse cursor over You to make a drop-down menu appear.  Click Camera Roll to view a list of your pictures, organized by the date they were taken.

    The Flickr Camera Roll

  3. Click on the photos that you wish to download in order to select them.  When selected, they will be outlined in blue and have a checkmark on them.  (Click a photo again to deselect it).  When you’ve selected all of the photos that you wish to download, click Download at the bottom of the screen.

    Selecting and downloading Flickr photos

  4. A pop-up will appear confirming the number of photos that you are about to download.  Click Download ZIP.

    Download a ZIP folder of Flickr photos

  5. A download prompt will appear.  Make sure the button beside “Save File” is filled in (click it to do so if it isn’t), and then click OK.

    Save prompt for downloading Flickr photos

  6. An explorer window will pop up, allowing you to choose where you want to save your photos.  Navigate to the location that you want your files downloaded to, and then click Save
    Select location to download Flickr photos

  7. Your photos are in a .ZIP folder, which means that the files are compressed into smaller versions that take up less memory space.  To get them back to regular size, right-click (or hold the “Command” button and click on an Apple computer) on the folder, and then click Extract All.

    Extract downloaded Flickr photos from a ZIP file

  8. A window will appear, asking where you want to extract the files in the folder to.  If you’re okay with where they are right now, just click Extract.  Make sure to have the check box next to “Show Extracted Files When Done” marked (if it’s not, click it to mark it).

    Select location to extract downloaded Flickr photos

  9. Voila!  There are your downloaded Flickr photos, in all their glory!

    Your downloaded Flickr photos

Now you know how to download your photos (and videos) from Flickr if you ever need the original files for some reason!

How to Share Flickr Photos

In our last tutorial, we showed you how to upload your photos to Flickr.  If you don't have any photos (or videos) on Flickr yet, we suggest doing that tutorial first.

Once you have some photos on Flickr, you can share them with other people in emails, or post them to your various social media feeds.  You can share your photos one at a time, or you can share multiple photos in albums, or even your entire Flickr collection!  All your photos, shared from one place… isn't that convenient?

To share photos on Flickr

  1. Go to in your web browser and log in.

  2. Move your mouse cursor over You, and click Camera Roll.  This will take you to a page containing all of your photos on Flickr, organized by the date that they were taken.

    The Flickr Camera Roll

  3. Click on the photos that you wish to share in order to select them; they will be highlighted in blue and have a checkmark on them.  (Click them again to deselect them.)

    Select and share your Flickr photos

    Once you've selected photos that you wish to share, click the Share button at the bottom of the screen.

  4. A window will pop up asking where you wish to share this photo.  If you click Facebook, Tumblr, Twitter, or Pinterest, simply log into the chosen service when you are prompted, and follow the instructions from there.

    Sharing Flickr photos to social media accounts

  5. If you click Mail, then click in the box labelled "Screen Name or Email" and type in a person's email address or user name on Flickr.  Then, if you wish, you can click in the box labelled "Include a Message" and type in a greeting or some sort of explanation about the photo you're sharing.  Then click Share.

    Sharing Flickr photos through email or internal messages

  6. If you want to share multiple photos at once when viewing an Album or your Photostream, look for the Share button and click it (it looks like a curved arrow pointing right).  Then, just follow step 4 or 5.

    Share sets of Flickr photos


That's how to share photos on Flickr!  Easy, right?

How to Upload to Flickr

You can simply use Flickr for looking at other people's photos and videos, but you can also upload your own photos and videos to Flickr for others to see!

There are two main ways to upload photos to Flickr.  One way is by using the interface on the Flickr website, which we will cover here.  The other is by using Flickr's "Uploadr" application.

To upload photos to Flickr

  1. Go to in your web browser and click Sign In in the top-right corner.

    Flickr sign in button

  2. Click in the two boxes and type in your Yahoo user name and your account password (respectively).  Also, unless you are using a computer that only you have access to, you may want to make sure that the check box beside "Keep Me Signed In" is not marked (if it is, click it to unmark it).  This ensures that other people cannot automatically access your Flickr account if they use the same computer as you.  Finish by clicking Sign In.

    Sign into Flickr

  3. Once you're on your main page for Flickr, click the Upload button (the little cloud icon with an arrow inside it) in the top-right corner.

    Upload to Flickr button

  4. When you get to the upload screen, click the Add button in the top-left corner to open an explorer window.  This will let you search through your computer for the photo or video that you want to add.  Click on it to select it, and then click Open.

    Add a photo to the Flickr upload screen

    Repeat this step for any other photos and videos that you want to add to Flickr right now.

  5. For each photo that you want to upload to Flickr, you can click on it to edit its details.  Your currently selected photo(s) will be highlighted with a pink outline.

    Settings for Flickr photos to be uploaded

    You have various options that you can change in the left-hand menu.  They are:

    Add a Description — Click here and type in a more detailed explanation of what's going on in this photo.

    Add Tags — Click here and type in key words that describe the subject matter of your photo (separate each one by a space).  These will make your photo easier to search for.

    Add People — Click here and type in the names or email addresses of your contacts on Yahoo to indicate that they are in this photo.

    Add to Albums — Click here to open a prompt for adding a photo to an album; this includes creating a new album and adding a photo to it.  See our Flickr Albums and Collections tutorial for more about creating albums on Flickr.

    Add to Group — If you are part of a group on Flickr, you can add your photo to that group's collection of photos.  See our Flickr Groups tutorial for more about groups on Flickr.

    Owner Settings — Click to see a series of additional settings, and click Edit beside the setting that you wish to change.  Your options are:

         – License: This changes how other people are allowed to use this photo (e.g. can they copy it?  Modify it?  Use it to sell something?)

         – Privacy: You can choose to make your photo visible to everyone, to just your friends and family, or only you.  Additionally, you can choose whether or not your photo can be searched on Flickr.

         – Content: You can choose a safety rating for your photo, so it will not be visible to certain people if it is sexually or violently explicit.  You can also choose to classify your image as a photo, a screenshot, or some kind of artwork that you've produced.

  6. You also have additional options across the top of the screen.

    Commands for Flickr photos to be uploaded

    Remove — Delete the currently selected photo(s) from the upload queue.

    Size — Choose the preview size of the photo(s) in your upload queue.

    Sort — Sort the photos in your upload queue by alphabetical order, or by how recently they were added to your upload queue.

    All — Select or deselect all photos in your upload queue.

    Info — Shows additional information about the photo(s) in your upload queue, such as how much memory space they take up, who can view them, and which photo you last added.

    Rotate — Rotate the selected photo(s) 90 degrees clockwise (i.e. to the right).

    When you are satisfied with the settings for all of the photos that you are uploading, click Upload [X] Photos.  (If you have made any changes, Flickr will ask you to confirm them; just click Upload Photos if you're fine with what you've done.)

Congratulations on uploading your photos to Flickr!

How to Sign Up for Flickr

You don't need an account to browse other people's photos and videos on Flickr.  However, you are going to need one if you want to upload, download, and share your own photos and videos.  This tutorial will show you how to get started with your account on Flickr.

To create a Flickr account

  1. Go to in your web browser and click Sign Up in the top-right corner.

    Sign up for Flickr button

  2. You will now see the form that you are required to fill out in order to sign up for Flickr.

    The Flickr sign up form

    If you wish to change the language that the form displays in, click the drop-down menu in the top-right corner and select a different language.  Otherwise, click in each of the boxes, drop-down menus, and buttons highlighted in the screenshot above and enter:

    – Your first name
    – Your last name
    – A Yahoo username for yourself (and what Yahoo domain it's in)
    – A password for your account
    – A phone number that Yahoo can reach you at (if you need help resetting your password)
    – The month, day, and year of your birth
    – Whether you are male or female

    You can also enter a mobile phone number of someone you trust — as well as your relationship to the person — if you want an extra way to reset your password if you get locked out of your account.

    When you're all done, click Create Account.

  3. Yahoo (Flickr's owner) will send you a confirmation code via phone to make sure that you have a way back into your account.  Make sure the phone number in the top box is the same as the one you entered on the registration page (if it's not, click in the box and type in the correct number).  Then click Send SMS to get a text message from Yahoo with the confirmation code, or click Call You to have Yahoo call your phone and send you the code.

    Get your Flickr sign up confirmation code

  4. Yahoo will send a verification code by text message or phone call to the phone number displayed in the grey box.  If you don't receive it, click Try Again.

    Confirm your Flickr account

    Otherwise, click in the box labeled "Code" and type in the four-digit verification code that you saw or heard.  Then click Submit Code.

  5. If you entered the code correctly, you'll see the screen below.  Click Get Started to go back to Yahoo's main page.

    Return to Yahoo after signing up

  6. Once you're on Yahoo's main page, click Flickr in the menu across the top.

    Go to Flickr from Yahoo

  7. Flickr will show you this screen to confirm a few details about your account.  If any of them are incorrect, click in their respective boxes and type in the correct information.  Then click Next.

    Confirm Flickr account details


After this, you should be taken to your main page on Flickr.  Congratulations on creating your Flickr account!