I use a lot of tools as a creator and I know how hard it is to find quality tools and resources to bring projects to the next level of professionalism and creativity. As a result, I compiled this sampling of some of the tools I use on an almost everyday basis to make the stuff I create happen.
This site is just awesome. While it isn’t the most useful site in the world, it has a quite large collection of random and wacky images that are perfect for blog headers and other random stuff. Plus, it’s run by Ryan McGuire, an awesome visual artist, who you should also check out.
If you haven’t heard of, or used Unsplash, then you’re in for a great surprise. Unsplash has a great collection of professionally shot CC-0 images of just about everything. It’s seriously one of the best stock sites on the internet, and it’s 100% free. So click that link for endless scrollings of awesomeness.
Pixabay is another image site and it’s probably one of the biggest semi-curated sites out there, it has close to 1 million images. The quality is “sometimes iffy, but seeing as it’s so huge it’s unlikely you wouldn’t be able to find something pretty nice. They also recently added a stock video section, so that’s a nice plus.
Known by most as CGtextures, texures.com is a MASSIVE collection of textures. There is a limit of 15 free images per day, but that’s honestly plenty if you’re not doing commercial work. (If you do need more, you can easily upgrade for a monthly fee.) They have also recently started adding 3d scanned materials and Substance materials that look very nice, although they are a premium membership option.
Adobe Color is my go to place for creating color combinations. It’s easy to use and has all the features of a more complex color tool, including image based palettes and color rules. There’s also a public repository of color palettes from the community.
BlendSwap has for years been the go to place for 3d models for Blender users, and for good reason. BlendSwap has a massive collection of 3d models curated by the community and the site’s awesome admins. (Hey @Poifox) There’s a lot of “not so great” models that need some fixing up before use, but there’s also some really good finds that make it worth the time looking through the site.
Royalty free music is hard to come by, and NoCopyright-Sounds is one of the few places you can get it. And the music is fantastic, in fact, I listen to their music while I work all the time. The music is perfect for background sound in videos and time-lapses.
David Revoy is an artist and comic writer who uses Krita to draw his comics. As a result he has created tons of brushes and resources for Krita and shared them for free on his blog. The amount and quality of the brushes he’s created is amazing and a must have for any artist who used Krita.
Reference images for artistry are abundant on Google Images, but rarely does one find the quality and resolution that Photobash images have. The library isn’t totally free, you only get packages with less than 100 images for free, but the rest of the packages are almost all under $10. Which is a steal for what you get.
The problem with fonts sites is often that there’s too many mediocre fonts shadowing the quality ones, that’s why I love Google Fonts. Google Fonts has a manageable amount of fonts and great search features that makes it my favorite place to find fonts for web and graphic designs. Another plus is it’s easy to use export features for use directly inside of CSS files.
This isn’t exactly a resource, but I couldn’t help but add it to the list. Detail.ist is an online magazine I recently found, it’s run by an industrial designer who reviews products in a very unique way and who also publishes monthly music playlists. The magazine is pretty unknown, but it’s very cool and deserves more attention, so if you got the time, have a look at the site.
That concludes the list!
I hope you found some new resources for your creative endeavors. If you did, drop me a line on Twitter and let me know how you used it.