Smashing Textures Contest


Take a shot, send us the image and win a Canon Digital Rebel camera. In web design textures are needed in background-images and header graphics. Graphic designers use textures to transport some concrete aspects of real-life into the digital presentation. Textures are also used to create an atmosphere which fits to the main topic or idea of the site.

Such textures are usually extracted from photos. In fact, everybody can create them — apart from a camera no special devices or tools are necessary. You just need to find a texture and you make a shot of it. And here is where our readers come in. With this contest we want to encourage you to go out, take a camera with you, shot textures and send them to us.

What are we looking for?

We are looking for original, manually taken shots of textures. This contest is all about creativity. So take your camera, go out and shoot. Basically, almost everything can be a texture. Of course, walls, paper, ceramics, textile, wood, fabrics, metal, sand, plastic, wallpaper, stone and million of other motifs. Abstract or concrete, beautiful and strange — it’s completely up to you.

A good texture doesn’t have to be clean — on contrary, some beautiful textures can be found there where nobody actually looks at. Besides, some texture convey their beauty once you closely observe them. Just be curious and take a closer look around you. You may want to have a look at this article to get some more ideas: Where can I find textures and background images?1

Clean fabric textures can be found everywhere — this shot is taken by Lucy Nieto

Water drops build a nice, irregular texture

Texture Screenshot4
This is glass fibre from a boat. Photo: Flickr5



“Natural” texture photographed in a wood

Texture made out of bricks in a wall

A knot texture

Texture Screenshot11
Stone Texture from Ben Cloward

Texture Screenshot12
This one is from a burned down hut

Stones texture which can be found in many sidewalks…

…or buildings.

Sand texture photographed by Kydroon

Wallpaper texture

Vintage fabric found by Stephanie Cake


Contest Details

So what is required to participate? And which rules should you consider before sending us your textures?

Is there a reward?
Yes. The camera presented below can be yours. One of participants of Smashing Texture contest will win the Canon Digital Rebel XT 8MP Digital SLR Camera with EF-S 18-55mm f3.5-5.6 Lens. The winner will be determined randomly.


Send us your textures until the 21st of May 2008. The winner will be announced few days after the deadline.


  • PNG or JPG
  • The size of textures is not that important, however they should have at least the width of 1000px.
  • All images should be packed in one single .zip-archive; the archive should have a specific file name, particularly your name – e.g.
  • Every participant can send at most 5 textures (pls send only 1, we’ve got so many entries…). Text-files with copyright information, your URL, country and a brief description of your texture should be placed in the .zip-file as well. Please don’t include any advertisement in the archives.

Copyright, labels, watermarks
Copyright information, water marks and URLs are usual for wallpapers, but they would disturb the texture. After all, designers should be able to work with textures after they are presented. Therefore please avoid everything which isn’t really a part of a texture. The participants should own the copyright for the textures they are sending. Textures should be photographed, therefore they shouldn’t be already available somewhere in the Web.

Winner announcement
All interesting textures will be presented as screenshots here, on Smashing Magazine and offered for free download to Smashing Magazine readers. The name and URL of participants will be presented, of course. If there will be enough participants, textures will be sorted and categorized.

Where should the textures be sent to?
The contest ist closed now.

Get creative, folks!


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Sven is the co-founder and former CEO of Smashing Magazine. He's now writing at his Conterest Blog, where he focuses on blogs, content strategy and publishing — all in German.

  1. 1

    mmm how do i know if my textures are ok? cause i sent a download link cause the textures where in a very good resolution.. thanx :)

  2. 52

    Sweet – I’m in!

    Now I just need to be on the look-out for some kind of texture that no-one would ever think of – or one that others might not be able to find where they live…

  3. 103

    I’m having trouble sending mine! I think it’s because it’s such a big message. I’ve never used zip before, maybe I am doing it wrong? any help apreciated… please

  4. 154

    Hey, just create a folder and put all your patterns in that folder. Then right click on that folder and select send to and click on Compressed (zipped) folder. Thats it!

  5. 205

    Great, just sent mine

  6. 256

    Did that… didn’t work… I eventually sent them in 3 lots… I hope it was ok to do that…?

    Thanks for your help :)

  7. 307

    May 20, 2008 2:11 am

    Interesting post, it is so nice to see real textures of the world than the one we find in photoshop! :)

  8. 358

    Just sent in my zip archive with 5 Textures :-)

  9. 409

    Is there a specific time deadline on the 21st.

  10. 460

    Is the deadline today or was it yesterday?

  11. 511

    Vitaly Friedman & Sven Lennartz

    May 21, 2008 1:51 pm

    Send us your textures until the 21st of May 2008. 22nd the contest will be closed.

  12. 562

    Eduardo Loureiro

    May 21, 2008 2:37 pm

    Hello, the result leaves when?


  13. 613

    Awesome contest! I can’t wait to see what everyone’s submitted, & especially how people see things!

  14. 664

    Vitaly Friedman & Sven Lennartz

    May 21, 2008 11:14 pm

    The contest is closed now. We will back next week.

  15. 715

    interesting contest!!

    good luck to everyone!!

  16. 766

    Paulo Neto (Brazil)

    June 9, 2008 4:01 pm

    Vitaly and Sven;
    I would like to be participatting in this contest.
    Is it possible? Can I send you, my pictures?

  17. 817

    the result leaves when?

    tanks YOU !!!

  18. 868

    Hello. has the winner been announced? Are the entries viewable?

  19. 919

    Hi. You already show my picture, The ““Natural” texture photographed in a wood” by mrhyde_br (flickr). I´m participatting of the contest ?


  20. 970

    please let me know the winner for this contest.I know its very old post still i wanna know the wiiner and his/ her work..


  21. 1021

    Would you accept them for entry into the competition if I waved this licence, or does the fact that they already are on my account mean that you still wouldn’t allow them?aion kinah

  22. 1072

    Hola soy Argentina y me dijeron que en esta pagina sortean esa camara, no se donde colocar la foto que saque ni cuales son las bases y condiciones. gracias!

  23. 1123

    Grunge Textures

    June 24, 2013 4:30 pm

    hi there are a lots of good grunge textures


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