December 18, 2014

Nine Awesome Resources for Your Blog Design (or Any Design Project)

I mentioned earlier this week that being a patent agent has been "wording me out" lately. I absolutely love writing but after nine hours of it, letters just sort of make me want to throw up.

Okay, that was dramatic.

But seriously, all that serious legal writing has me wanting to come home and make something colorful and completely unscientific. All that legal writing also makes me hyper-aware that intellectual property laws can be a real b*tch, and that ignoring them doesn't make them go away.

Which is how we got to where we are today with this post: nine resources for people who want to make pretty things that (probably) won't get you sued.

I use all three of these sites regularly because they all toot their "copyright free" horns where I can hear them.

Life of Pix

Life of Pix is a random collection of photographs updated weekly. The pictures are high quality and very creative. The only downside is that you can't really search for what you're looking for.


Pixabay is more geared towards stock photos and vectors than artistic photography like Life of Pix. Pixabay has a really nifty search feature though that makes my life a lot easier.


To quote the site directly, SplitShire is a site full of "delicious free stock photos for personal & commercial use." And believe me, they're yummy.

Most of the fonts on these sites are free for download. HOWEVER some of them are not free for commercial use, which is why you have to read the "read me" file that comes with almost all of the fonts. For example, the font I used to write "Free Fonts" in that nifty little graphic up there is from Kimberly Geswein, who charges $5 to license her fonts for commercial use.

Font Squirrel

Font Space

Sometimes, a good pattern makes the design. (Or should I say, makes the planner.)

It's easy to go nuts with the patterns at the Pattern Library. And it's even easier because all of the patterns are "for you to use freely in your designs."

The background of my blog is actually from Subtle Patterns. The patterns there are free to use commercially as long as you credit the site somewhere in the project. (For example, in a blog footer.)

Sometimes, like when you're designing questionably inappropriate Christmas cards, you need just a simple cardboard paper pattern. It's those times that you go to Lost and Taken, and use one of their royalty free patterns that can be used in any of your projects (personal and commercial) with no attribution required.