13 Places to Find Free High-Quality Design Resources

Are you looking for great new design resources? Of course you are! Everyone loves finding new inspiring design resources.  Even though we'd like to, we simply don't have enough time to make everything we need from scratch, so we've decided to save you some time and energy by compiling this list of 13 high-quality free design resources.  Enjoy!  

Pixeden is a premium design and web resource company. They release free web and graphic design templates on a regular basis.

Dribbble offers a place for designers to show and tell.  View the freebies tag to see the latest free resources from the Dribble community.  

Agile Designers is a great resource for design and developer resources.  Save time with the sort feature and sort by popularity to see what others like most.   You can even save and organize your favorites.  

Psddd. is a collection of design resources from dribbble.  Sort by category or use the handy search bar to find what you are looking for.  

Creative Market offers Free Goods of the Week.  Six resources are made free for 7 days before they return to full price.  Be sure to check back weekly to see what is being given away free that week.  

Graphic Burger has premium quality design resources offered for free to the community. On Graphic Burger you can find exclusive PSD files and featured excellent freebies from designers around the world. 

Iconfinder is the best resource we've found for free icons.  It boasts a very large collection of over 340,00 premium icons. You can browse sets of icons or search for them individually.  

Premium Pixels was made by Orman Clark, a UK based web designer.  Premium Pixels is where he shares his design resources. He even puts up tutorials every once in a while for good measure!


Brusheezy provides a place for artists to create and exchange Photoshop Brushes, Patterns, Textures, and various other resources that are related Photoshop. You can explore and discuss the creations of other artists and find that perfect resource for your next project.

Free Vector Maps is a large library of  free and premium high detail vector maps created for designers all over the world. These maps are really awesome and new maps are released all the time. 


Best PSD Freebies  provides artists with free high-quality PSD files for web that you can’t find anywhere else. They have icons, buttons, banners, ribbons, website templates, email templates, and lots of other free Photoshop files.  

Purty Pixels is a venture started by Rich Tabor of Theme Beans.  The site is really easy to browse and there are tons of great design resources that you can download for free.  


Subtle Patterns offers free high-quality tileable textured patterns from Alte Mo.  These are great if you are looking for a more subtle background for your project.  

Final Thoughts

Don't forget to give credit and acknowledge creators for their hard work.  A little gratitude really does go a long way.  Please let us know what you think about this collection and do let us know about other resources that you love so we can add them to our next collection!  

Licensing: Why does it Matter and What does it Mean?

Initially, most if not all licensing, was done through a “Rights Managed” system. The Rights Managed licensing of an image presented an image at a price dependent on several variables including the type of usage, the specific final project, the time the image is being used, the size of the final print, and the industry for which the image is being used.  The downside to this licensing structure is that image sales can fluctuate significantly according to the final usage of an image. The rights managed model also requires that photographers and agencies periodically check with image buyers to ensure that image usages have not continued outside of the allotted time period. These sorts of issues have helped shape the industry to what has become the new standard of “Royalty Free” licensing. 

So what exactly is a Royalty-Free license?  First off, there is nothing free about a Royalty-Free license.  The “free” in the term comes from the fact that an image buyer is not required to pay a photographer a royalty for each use of the image.  Royalty-Free licensing was quickly adopted by creatives, as it allowed for images to be purchased once, and used indefinitely without the worry or need to renew a license.  This licensing model was introduced in order to counter the “per use” fees associated with Rights Managed sales. The one-time fee also allowed for more images to be purchased and at a more affordable rate.

Snapwire falls into the newest and most revolutionary type of stock photography.  We are a firm that believes in the value of photographer’s photos, as well as in providing quality content and great licensing terms to our buyers. We work with a community of over 450,000 photographers to source the best images directly to all levels of designers and art buyers.  Snapwire works as a form of hybrid stock agency, representing and licensing images from a traditional royalty free marketplace, while also connecting photographers directly with buyers to provide them with unique and custom produced content.  The model works to bridge the gap left in traditional stock photography, so creatives never again have to settle with an image that is just “close enough”.  Snapwire also presents a more cost effective method of custom photos for advertising agencies and designers.  Prior to Snapwire, quality custom photos required production shoots, which were often limited by restrictive budgets.  For a buyer, Snapwire allows for a price per image to be established by their project budget.

As an asset to the photographers, Snapwire is beneficial in a few distinct ways.  The first is in providing access to agency projects and briefs in an open source platform.  Before Snapwire, it was almost unthinkable that most photographers would be welcome to work directly with advertisers and companies.  In working directly with companies, photographers are able to produce meaningful content, and increase the likelihood of their images being seen and purchased by advertisers and companies.

We hope that this brief explanation of licensing was informative. While definitely not the most exciting subject, the more informed you are the better your chances for success. We welcome you into our community to grow and learn as a photographer or buyer.  Good Luck and Happy Shooting!