I want to get in to a graphic design course in university. I have alot of projects in mind, however i dont know if im allowed to use stock photos...would it be ok if they were in the final piece as well (such as in a magazine cover or a brochure). I also want to do photomanipulation, but i dont know if could use stock photos for that either. Thankyou so much
Stock images are typically how things are done. It not possible to travel to, or set up a custom photo shoot for every image necessary.
it's fine to use stock image in a portfolio. Be sure you purchase the images though... don't merely use Google as your image source. If asked, merely state "It's a stock image." There's no shame or harm in that.
Photo manipulation is generally okay with stock images as well. I mean I never use a straight image as it was purchased. I always do something to to it.
Just be careful with the license where photo manipulation is concerned... i.e. a stock image manipulated and then sold as a poster may be beyond any licensing terms.
I recently discovered a sticker being sold on Amazon that uses a stock illustration I created. I know for a fact resell rights weren't granted. So.. yeah.. there's a legal issue where someone is infringing upon my rights by selling a sticker.
But merely for a portfolio, to show off skills, you'd be fine.