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Smashing Conf New York

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Category: Graphics

Articles and tutorials on designing in Photoshop, InDesign, Illustrator and Fireworks. Free icons, textures, PSDs and other similar resources are featured here, as well as showcases of photography and video. This is also the place that hosts our regular Desktop Wallpaper Calendar series.

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10 Easy Steps To Advanced Photography Skills

A camera does not work like an eye; film does not work like memory. There is a fine line between a photo that is quite nice and one that is quite breathtaking. At some unknown point, a photo can cross the Rubicon and be forever a piece of beautiful art. That hinterland between a regular photo and evocative art is a shifting area from person to person and taste to taste. However, that zone can be narrowed a bit once you start to consider the way the brain stores memories and emotions. [Content Care Dec/01/2016]

And yes, it gets a bit touchy-feely here trying to determine if your work has crossed that line. With rigorous practice and peer feedback, you can start to appreciate where that zone is and, consequently, improve your hit ratio.

The Bombing of Dresden

The good news is that divining your way to more beautiful photos does not require rune rites of scapulimancy. There are some basic things and mantras to keep in mind as you practice and fail, then practice and succeed, then practice and fail, then practice and succeed, and rinse and repeat. We’ll detail a few of these below.

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50 Free High Quality Icon Sets

When it comes to freebie designs, beautiful icons sets are tops. Designers scour for these free treasures more than anything else. You can use icon sets in Web applications, website designs and on your desktop. If well designed, they make a great impression on others. Beautifully designed icons also prove the quality of a designer's work, so many designers make theirs freely available online, thus giving their work more exposure.

Screenshot

In the overview below, we present 50 beautifully designed, free and professional high-quality icons for desktop and Web design. All of them can be freely used for private projects, and some are available for commercial use as well. Regardless, always read the licenses -- they may change from time to time.

You can also scan through our other icon-related articles:

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35 Beautiful Photos Of Natural Animals

Animal photography is probably one of the most dangerous types of photography. The outcome totally depends on the skills of photographer and the time when the shot is taken. A photographer who uses good exposure, color and blur settings along with appropriate shutter speed and focusing techniques can produce stunning photographs. [Content Care Dec/01/2016]

Screenshot

Below we feature 35 beautiful examples of animal photography, photos of wild, tamed and other animals. All photographs are linked and lead to the source - the respective photographers. Do not forget to explore further works of these talented photographers. Please notice that the collection presented below is supposed to only give you some inspiration, it can and should be extended; please feel free to suggest links to further resources in the comments to this posts.

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50 Wonderful, Inspiring Photoblogs

A photoblog is a very specific type of blog. Its focus is photography, and there are typically few words beyond a caption and comments. Photoblogs are easy to set up and maintain, and they make great photo galleries for photographers who are put off by the complexity of HTML coding or installing a CMS such as WordPress. [Links repaired January/10/2017]

Beautiful  Photo Blog

It’s because of this simplicity, not to mention the development of free yet sophisticated tools like Pixelpost, that photoblogging has exploded in popularity over the last few years. Photoblogs.org, for example, lists over 32,000 photoblogs! That’s a lot of photos, and a lot of photographers vying for your attention.

Dedicated as ever to making your life easier, we’ve handpicked over 50 brilliant photoblogs for your viewing pleasure. There’s a little of everything, including photojournalism and nature, landscape, street, portrait and travel photography. We’ve also listed some of the best photoblogging solutions, articles and other resources at the bottom of the post.

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Photoshop Patterns – The Ultimate Collection

Photoshop users can save themselves a great deal of time and end up with better results by taking advantage of readily available freebies, such as brushes, pattern and shapes. With the wide variety and (often) high quality of resources available, whatever you need or are looking for is in most cases already available somewhere. The only problem is that the vast quantity of freebies can make it difficult to track down what you need. Hopefully this collection of excellent Photoshop pattern will help. [Content Care Nov/27/2016]

Photoshop pattern

The resources featured here are all available as downloads in PAT format, which can be placed in Photoshop. In addition to this format, there is also a number of quality resources online for creating or using pattern in other formats that can be used by any program, not just Photoshop. As with any type of freebie, always be sure to check the license or requirements set by the creator.

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100 Beautiful Free Textures For Your Design

Use of texture in Web design is extremely common. Part of the reason textures are so useful to designers is the relative ease of the integrating one into a design if a high-quality textured image already exists, not to mention the endless possibilities. Fortunately, plenty of photographers and designers are willing to share their work with the rest of us so that we can use them in a number of different ways.

Modern Texture

In this post, we'll look at 100 different textures in a wide variety of different categories. Of course, each image is linked to the source where it can be downloaded. As with any type of freebie, be sure to read the terms and conditions or stipulations by the owner before using it in your work.

For more on textures see:

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35 Examples Of Beautiful City Photography

More people across the world are living in cities than ever before. Cities are both places of historical significance and the engines of the world’s economy. They’re also home to some of the greatest treasures and buildings that mankind has created. Cities are wonderful subjects for photography. They offer a variety of subjects suitable for both straight and HDR photography, including architectural, street and night photography. The structure, angles and texture you get with architectural photography make it unique and very engaging. [Content Care Nov/28/2016]

Beautiful City Photo

From the energy of Cairo to the canals of Venice, Smashing Magazine celebrates the diversity of the world’s cities by presenting you 35 beautiful city photos. Be sure to check out the portfolios of the talented photographers whose work you see here. We’ve also included some useful links at the bottom of the article.

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The Beauty Of Urban Decay Photography

The city is a fantastic source of beauty and inspiration, with all the glitz and glamour glistening beneath the city lights. But there is another side of the city altogether, one rife with its own kind of allure. Across the tracks, away from the dazzle of downtown, lies a darker imagination, this one looking to grunge-ridden, dilapidated architecture for inspiration. There is a beauty that pervades this kind of urban decay and captured wonderfully through a photographer’s well-trained eye. These industrial city scenes are wonderfully dark and offer a glimpse of the weathered face beneath the city facade. [Content Care Nov/29/2016]

Screenshot

In this inspirational installment, we take a tour and show the charm of a more neglected and worn side of the city. We showcase the beauty of urban decay, a series of photos of this eroded elegance that photographers have captured brilliantly. These gorgeously grungy images have a haunting appeal, a stirring quality that radiates from within and that earned them a spot on this list.

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The Ultimate Collection Of Free Vector Packs

Designers love freebies that make life easier and help them create higher-quality work. Free vectors are useful, free vector packs even more so. Fortunately, there are plenty of talented graphic designers who are willing to give away their work (or samples of it) to benefit the rest of us. In this post, we feature 60 of the best and most useful free vector packs. [Content Care Nov/25/2016]

Live Music Vectors

Many of the vectors featured here would be useful for particular styles of design and specific types of websites. Take a few moments to browse through them, and you may find something that's perfect for a current or upcoming project. Before you use any of the freebies, be sure to check the license designated by the creator to stay within the stated guidelines.

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