How to design a site without pictures
A site I'm creating is a directory which sorts and displays information for about 300 businesses which are part of a specific business partnership/network.
The site is meant to provide information to consumers, so i want it to seem professional, but I'm foreseeing a lack of pictures to work with and wondering how one could cover up a lack of pictures with other design elements so the page doesnt look bare.
Also, if someone could link me any examples of well styled pages that dont rely on images it would be greatly appreciated!
On a side note, i was thinking of maybe trying to spruce it up with the least arbitrary seeming free stock photos i could find, but I'm not sure if that's a good idea.
I'd probably focus on two things: Typography and Color.
There are lots of sites that only use typography, for example: Sites that Use Typography As The Only Design Element
As you mention, stock images are a great option, but I'd recommend you buy some credits in iStock or similar, though. You will probably need really good quality ones if your site will be based on them, and free images don't usually have the same quality.