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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.
Is sketching by hand more than a nostalgic activity? How is paper any different from a screen, especially when hardware is becoming more and more sophisticated? Is improving your hand-sketching skills really worthwhile when high-tech software is advancing every day?
Everyone seems to have a strong opinion about hand-sketching these days. Some absolutely hate the thought of putting their ideas to paper because they can’t draw to save their lives. Others couldn’t imagine their creativity surviving without it. Love it or hate it, there’s much more to a sketchbook than old-school charm.
Update (10.10.2013): Please note that the ZIP file has been updated after this article has been published. In case Photoshop should crash on your end, please rename your Photoshop settings folder to fix this. You can find the configuration folder here: /Users/[Username]/Library/Preferences/Adobe Photoshop CC Settings. Please note that this will reset all Photoshop settings to default. If you should still happen to run into any issues, please kindly send an email to email@example.com. Thank you for your understanding and support. – Ed.
Here at Smashing Magazine, we're very fond of the creativity and mutual support of the Web design community. Today, we're proud to feature a free Photoshop extension, BlendMe.in, that will help everyone access those font icons they need without even leaving Photoshop. Enjoy!
There is no doubt that the Web is full of websites that are packed with free icon packs, and that doesn't necessarily make it easier for designers to find their way around when they're looking for a particular icon for a particular project. When you're in your creative zone and have an idea about something that would perfectly fit in your design, you don't have time to waste and struggle with finding the right asset.
Water lilies are beautiful flowers and ideal tutorial material. To get to the final result you’ll do a lot of clever actions which mostly involve rotating and duplicating, and there is a lot of room for experimentation as well. For instance, you can try out different ways on how you build up the layers of petals, and play with different shades of pinkish gradients.
This tutorial gives you the basic steps I followed, but while I was creating this flower I did actually way more than what I’m writing here. You see, every creation is never straightforward or perfect just right away. It takes some trial and error, because I also needed to find the method that can be most easily explained.
In my career as a freelance illustrator, map-making has become a favorite specialty of mine. With each map assignment, I virtually travel across the globe, visiting places I’ve never been. Most recent was a “trip” to New Zealand for a sampling of local Wellington beer for Draft Magazine.
My maps are designed to appear next to magazine stories about trips to faraway places, or about the best restaurants in a nearby neighborhood. I create them in Adobe Illustrator, and I relish the research process as much as working on the drawings themselves.
High-definition (or “Retina”) displays have spread wider and wider, and evidently their numbers will keep growing. So, as creators of products that will be consumed on Retina devices, we have to optimize our design and development workflow accordingly.
Slicing graphics from finished designs to use for development is one of the less enjoyable parts of building a website or app. And it takes a long time. Because slicing is a monotonous and straightforward task, using the right tool and workflow can save you hours or even days of work.
Another weekend, and yet another freebie. Today, we are happy to feature a useful icon set, the Simple Icons by Dan Leech. Dan's set contains 100 PNG icons for popular websites, apps and organisations, all in eleven sizes (16, 24, 32, 48, 64, 128, 256, 512, 1024, 2048 and 4096 pixels squared). [Content Care Dec/02/2016]
The white icons have transparent backgrounds, which makes them ridiculously simple to style with CSS. As a bonus, simpleicons.org maintains a list of official background colour values that can be used in conjunction with the icons, thoroughly researched and derived from official branding guidelines of each brand.
Today we are pleased to feature Gemicon, a set of over 600 original high-quality icons in resolutions of 16 × 16, 32 × 32 and 64 × 64 pixels. This set has been designed by Turqois and is being released to the design community.
You can use the set for all of your projects for free and without any restrictions. You may freely use it for both your private and commercial projects, including software, online services, templates and themes.
Today, we have a beautiful Christmas icon freebie for you created by the talented, hard-working folks at RocketTheme. The icon set contains ten icons available as 256×256px PNGs that have been lovingly and exclusively prepared for Smashing Magazine and the Web design community. As usual, this set is released under a Creative Commons license and can be used in commercial and private projects.
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License. You are free to distribute, transform, fiddle with and build them into your work, even commercially. However, please always credit the original designer of the set (in this case, RocketTheme).
After endless suplications from the design community Daniel Bruce finally finished his update of the Entypo Glyph Set — a free set of universal 284 carefully crafted pictograms for regular design projects. The icons are available as EPS, PDF and Photoshop PSD files as well as desktop typefaces (TrueType, OpenType) and Web fonts. [Links checked February/18/2017]
This set contains a large collection of glyphs for all occasions and uses — common pictograms that shouldn't be missing in anybody's arsenal. Each glyph was drawn and optimized to make sure that it fits the overall style of the suite. You can use this glyph set freely for commercial and personal projects.