15 Favorite Free Fonts
As a graphic designer, I spend much of my day working with fonts. We are all familiar with fonts but do you really understand what fonts do – beside the obvious of course. Using a cooking analogy, I like to think of fonts as the herbs, spices and condiments that add flavour to your meal; without these flavour combinations, meals would be somewhat boring and bland.
There are thousands of fonts available but as a designer I find I tend to go back to the many of the same fonts over and over because they work in so many scenarios. Of course, many of my standby fonts are commercial fonts that must be purchased before you can use them but luckily now there are many lovely fonts available for free too. I’ve selected some great fonts that can be downloaded for free (personal use only). Some free fonts offer an option to donate to the designer and as a fellow designer I often try to give them a small donation if I can afford to do so. Please keep that in mind if you have the means because it takes a long time and effort to develop and design a font package.
Download these beautiful fonts here:
Great Vibes | Abraham Lincoln | Aller | Young & Beautiful | Allura | Maven Pro | Habana | Impregnable | Raleway | Connie | BlackJack | Steelfish | Matchbook | SimpleSnails | Vevey
Free Downloadable iPhone and iPad wallpaper.
Spring iPhone and iPad Wallpaper – Spring is all around us and so is the beauty of this season. This is the time of year to shed your winter coats, scarves and boots and get outside. Take your kids, dog, camera, sketch pad, picnic basket and start exploring the world. As a gentle reminder to get out and take in all of nature waking up from a long slumber, I’ve created these iPhone and iPad wallpapers. I love this great quote from Marilyn Monroe “Keep smiling because life is a beautiful thing and there’s so much to smile about.” Use these designs with your lock screen or as your regular background. Have fun, get out and enjoy your life – it’s a beautiful thing!
Download the iPhone wallpaper here (when the image comes onto the screen, right-click on it and then go to “save images as”).
Download the iPad wallpaper here (when the image comes onto the screen, right-click on it and then go to “save images as”).
Free Hand Drawn Doodle Design Elements
By now you all know that I love to doodle, it’s a bit like therapy for me. Recently I created this cute little collection and thought it would be fun to share. These high quality hand drawn vector design elements can be used for stationery (tags, packaging, invites, cards, labels), digital or paper scrapbooking, embellishments, as photo elements, in web design, logos, and in lots of fun DIY projects. The sky’s the limit with these designs! Use them in whatever project you want.
This hand drawn vector doodle set comes in pdf, ai and png format.
Download your free hand drawn doodle clipart here.
Feel free to use the graphics for whatever you like….just please don’t use them for any type of digital download, free or otherwise and not for resale. Thank you!
Tutorial on how to make a photo into a vector silhouette image.
How to Make Vector Silhouettes from a Photo – Silhouettes are always a nice touch in any composition and they’re actually really easy to create from a photo. To clarify for everyone, vector images are images that will scale to any size without losing their sharpness and clarity – some people refer to them as clipart. Make sure that you choose a photo that doesn’t have a busy background and has a significant contrast between the item you want to convert into a silhouette and the background behind it. I’m using this tranquil heron photo I took this summer on a foggy day at the beach. I use this trick often in my work as a graphic designer and thought this would be a great design tip to share.
This tutorial requires a high resolution photo, photo editing software (I use Photoshop CS6) and Adobe Illustrator (CS6).
- Open your selected photo into Photoshop or some sort of photo editing software. Our goal is to make the photo have as much contrast as possible without totally distorting the image. There are a few different ways to accomplish this task and I’ll show you two different methods. Feel free to use what you’re comfortable with.
- METHOD 1: Go to IMAGE > ADJUSTMENTS > LEVELS. Grab the tiny triangular input sliders and slide them around until you have a very light background and a dark image that will become the silhouette. Generally that means that you’ll move the sliders on the left slightly towards the right, the middle slider will go very slightly to the left and the right slider will move in to the left quite a bit. You’ll have to eyeball this a bit and see what looks best. The goal here is to make the background as light as possible without washing out any black while making the dark areas darker.
- METHOD 2: Go to IMAGE > ADJUSTMENTS > BRIGHTNESS/CONTRAST. Move both sliders to the right until you achieve your desired outcome (high contrast without washing out the image you want to become the silhouette).
- Once you’re satisfied with the colour settings, crop your page to select the part of the image you want for your design. Save your image.
- Open Illustrator and open your photo. Select your photo using the SELECTION tool (black arrow) and you’ll notice that in the properties bar at the top, a LIVE TRACE button will appear (or IMAGE TRACE depending on which version of Illustrator you have). Click on the LIVE TRACE or IMAGE TRACE button. (If you’re not super happy with the results, you can click on the white arrow to the left of the IMAGE TRACE button and play around with the various settings – I find the Black and White Logo setting can work well too). Once you’ve clicked the LIVE TRACE or IMAGE TRACE button you’ll notice that it now says EXPAND. With your image still selected, click on the EXPAND button.
- With the image selected, right click your mouse and toggle down to UNGROUP and click on it. Now, click on a white area of the drawing so that it’s selected and then go to SELECT > SAME > FILL COLOUR and all the white in your image will be selected, hit the DELETE button. Your goal here is to get rid of all the white sections of your image.
- Select all the black items on the canvas, right click your mouse and toggle down and click on group. Now your sketch is all grouped together. (Don’t bother with this step if you’d like to move the various elements of the image around on the page or modify them individually).
- At this point you can get creative, add colour and use the vector on top of backgrounds, photos, etc. Use your silhouette to create or enhance your very own work or art.
I created this printable page for the tutorial and you’re welcome to download and print it. Download here.
Click to download this free printable quote.