Free Graphics & Photos For Your Labels
I'm a graphic designer, photographer and college professor who has been brewing as a hobby for only the last 2 years or so. I want to share with you my free and non-copyrighted resources for graphics and photos that I've been using in commercial and educational applications for years so you can use them on your labels.
You guys create great labels here both from scratch, and found images online. This is where my heart aches... I've noticed that some very cool designs/drawings/photos that appear on labels here can be found with a simple Google or Yahoo image search. In fact, I've searched and found some of the exact graphics.
This is where ethics is an issue for us designers. Someone created that cool digital drawing you found, someone traveled to the wilderness to take that photo, and someone paid for the paint and paint brushes to make that painting you are using as a background on your label. A majority of those images I am sure are made by the designers as a way of paying their bills - it's our livelihood and career. If I didn't say anything, I'd be like the armed off duty cop who sees a purse snatcher and turns a blind eye.
In any event, on behalf of all artists out there who spend hours and hours in front of our computer, behind our camera, or holding a paint brush, we would love to let you use our creations - most times for free - but please please please be ethical and check with us, ask us, or let us see what you've made with our creations. Sometimes we charge $, sometimes we won't, sometimes it is impossible for us to ever know you take it. Nonetheless, we love flattery, we hate thievery. A simple polite email inquiry to us is all it usually takes.
A few of the resources I've gathered over the years are below. They are all free to use. In a few instances you may be required to supply an email or log in. A few require knowledge of Photoshop, Illustrator, Gimp or other similar design programs.
freedigitalphotos.net - lower quality photos are free.
Flickr Creative Commons - photographers who understand that sometimes there needs to be an alternative to full copyrights.
Stock.Xchng - must be a user. Most photographers just want to see your finished design, the rest don't care.
123rf.com - Not free, but great photos at a very cheap price. (thanks HawksGirl)
Free Vector Drawings and Graphics
all-silhouettes.com - Thousands of silhouettes of everything you can think of.
vectorstock.com (Thanks HawksGirl)
Other Free Resources:
DeviantArt - Lots of GREAT stuff here, but not everything is meant to be free. Please email the artist, they'll love you. Most of the time, they'll let you use their artwork for free.
Microsoft Office Clip Art - requires Office. Just insert graphic into Word (for example). Then copy and paste into your design program of choice.
Textures - free textures like wood grain, cracked cement, dry mud/dirt, etc.
I could look at labels designed and posted on HBT for hours, so any questions you have about the software, file formats, or anything, I'd be more than willing to answer. If you would like to find an image but can't, I'll help you search... anything to help lower the probability of you using another artist's image without permission. Thanks for reading. :)
Free Software Programs:
Adobe Software Trials (30 days Only): Photoshop, Illustrator,
Corel Software Trials (30 days Only): PaintShop Photo Pro, Painter,
Paint.Net (PC Only)
From user SilentAutumn
...I'd also like to mention the Wiki Commons image site as a great, great resource for some amazing images. Sometimes the posters want some kind of credit, but usually don't.
The National Archives have some great photos too. But it's hard to navigate and they're still in the process of digitizing a lot of media. You have to go to "Digital Copies" tab, then under the Advanced Search, only check "Photographs and other Graphic Materials". Otherwise you'll get some confusing results.
Photobucket has recently released some nice editing options for images with their free accounts.
And even Photoshop will let you make a some decent edits with their free accounts.
Somebody spends time to run the homebrewtalk website. Somebody pays for the hosting service. This website seems also to be entirely based upon a web php script package that someone has written. Do you know whether this is free open source software or not? How much time have you spent finding out if this php package is free? If the author is asking for donations, have you given any? Have you payed your premium membership fees to this forum to compensate the owners for their hard work? No? Then bite me.
Ummm. yeah. I don't think you read all I said since I wasn't bashing anyone like you've bashed me... but geez bud you don't have to make it personal, I'm here to help while increasing awareness. We don't need uncalled for comments. Try not to post anything irrational, it doesn't help, in fact, I'll assume you are having a terrible day and didn't mean it. Apology accepted. And otherwise, it isn't a relatable circumstance you are referring to. It's actually kind of silly.
Please enjoy the resources I gave. I'm happy for now being a new brewer with restrictions on what I could use on this site. Like most consumers, I'll pay when the time comes that I'm ready to take advantage of the full product.
I've done the whole design and development job you are referring to. Someone pays me and my team to create it, or get a template and make minimal adjustments to it, then give them the site for them to run without knowledge of programming & development... yes it can be done as long as maintenance or updates to software isn't needed. They place ads and come up with levels of membership in order to make it profitable. Memberships and ads keep the site going.
I do pay for copyrights/ask permission/pay for one time use/locate rights free versions or I make my designs myself. Thanks for your "input".
The guy was just saying that it bothers him when people use copyrighted graphics, so instead of complaining about it he gave links to resources for free graphics.
No need to be a dick about it.
He wasn't criticizing hbt.
However, most people lifting Google images are doing so in a non commercial capacity so no one is really getting ripped off.
Edit: that being said, making an effort to get permission is always a good idea.
greggor, these are excellent resources. And of course people should be encouraged to use these if possible. But your statement criticising the usage of copyrighted material for these labels is a little overzealous.
The people here are not making these labels for commercial usage; they are (usually) not professional designers and don't know the intricacies of copyright law (heck I don't really fully understand it). The labels are for their own personal use. They get no financial benefit by using them, and artists are not really losing money financially from their use.
If resources like google images weren't around to get the images from, then they would do what people did before the internet... copy the images from books or magazines. People have been using copyrighted material like that for ages and nobody had a problem until recently. The line between infringement and fair use is a little grey, but since the labels are for non-comercial use and do not negatively "effect of the use upon the potential market for, or value of, the copyrighted work," it certainly gives some protection for this usage.
Most other artists out there share my mentality... We DO care if you use our work, and we'd love to see how you use it. We only charge or ask for $ if we think it's worth it (for example, if you're a big magazine, website, corporation, or other company seeking profitable business). Like I said, we love flattery and usually would just like to know. The dark side of it? What I don't know won't hurt me.
I would be happy to share my home brew profits with those artists that contribute to my labels. Right now though, I am running a deficit.:D I will say that I do, in most cases, use non-copyright material. In my business, however, I am an active subscriber to iStock and pay for those tools that I use to earn a living, without exception.
Gregger agree with you and don't think you sounded "A-Holey". I've got some good friends from college that are graphic deigners so I can understand. Thanks for the resources.
BTW: Know of any good pics/drawings of two boys beating on each other, a la the three stooges?
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