Hello! I wanted to share some amazing [FREE] tools for creating your own DIY graphic designs today! Being able to create your own graphics isn’t only a skill needed as a blogger or a marketing expert anymore. From time to time, I’m sure you’ve wanted to create your own graphics whether it was for a party you’re planning or a presentation you’re conducting. Having some user friendly, high quality, and FREE tools handy, can only be benefit, right?
Photoshop is great when working with photos, but creating complex graphics do require some dedicated learning. I’m so pleased to share 10+ tools for creating your own graphic design.
A special thanks to Angela Hicks for sharing some of these tools with me at the Hubspot INBOUND Marketing Conference last week.
Color can create a big impact. Studies show that, a person decides whether they like or dislike something within the first 90 seconds and 62-90% of that is based on color alone. Therefore, using the “right” colors can make a big difference, especially when you’re trying to get someone to make a purchase decision with you.
There are some great free color tools our there, including:
- Colorzilla: a free eye dropper color picker tool that is installed directly to your browser. With Colorzilla, you can get a color reading from any point in your browser, make adjustments and paste it into another program. You can also use Colorzilla to analyze the page and inspect a palette of colors.
- COLOURlovers: a creative community where people create shade of colors, palettes and patterns, and discussions on the latest color trends. You can browse color palettes based on “category” such as business, weddings, etc. This will come in really handy if you’re trying to plan an event and looking for a ‘theme’ color scheme! Another super awesome service COLOURlovers provide is custom fabric printing for any patterns you create via the site.
I have a mini-obsession for typography. Sometimes I find myself spending hours searching for THE font to use. I really do believe a font can make or break a creative piece. Here are a few Free resources I use to help me make my typography decisions:
- Google Fonts: browse and install selection of free web fonts on Google Fonts. It also tells you the speed at which it loads on the web, etc. which is extremely useful as you don’t want visitors to your site to wait for your fonts to load – an extra second of load time might deter people from coming back to your site!
- 100 Free Fonts: I always refer to this article for 100 free fonts to download – my go-to’s are BEBAS, Penna, Sant Joan Despi (I love that the O is in the shape of a heart!)
- After the Deadline – Less to do with typography but more so around what to do AFTER you write is this advance spell check/grammar tool. Download After the Deadline to help you with contextual spell check, advanced style checking, and intelligent grammar checking.
Hieroglyphics and Iconography
Icon fonts are very popular. They are super easy to use if you download a full set as you can create icons using some simple codes. My personal picks are:
- IcooMoon: access over 3500+ vector icons. You can access gain access to the free version or pay a small fee ($39-$59) for specialty sets.
- Font Awesome: d0wnload the full set for free and you get instant access to 479 icons. Browse to this page for their complete CSS cheatsheet!
Imagery & Photos
Ok, I’ve touched on the elements that go into a graphic design, now it’s time to share the tools that actually combine the elements and imagery together. These tools are not only great for creating simple graphics for your blog covers, posters, and invites, but also fabulous for creating your own infographics.
- infogr.am – This is a super user friendly inforgraphic tool with an extremely easy to use interface. There are hundreds of infographics templates ready to you to use and video animation is soon to launch. The free version gives you access to 30 chart types, which is honestly plenty if you’re not planning on creating complex graphs.
- Piktochart – Very similar to infogr.am, Piktochart is also a drag and drop type of inforgraphic template tool. I’ve been using this for several years and totally worth the small investment if you’re looking to create some professional designs. I personally LOVE creating Infographic greeting cards, they are so much fun! Have a look at this Christmas Year in Review Infographic Card I created a couple of years back!
- Canva – It was total honor to hear Guy Kawasaki speak last week in Boston. He is the co-founding partner of Canva – a drag and drop graphic design tool that features ready made designs specifically for social media and also offers a real time collaboration tool, allowing you to work with your team on designs. I used Canva to create my blog cover photo for this post!
- When it comes to free and BEAUTIFUL photos, here are a number of sites that offer free, commercial use photos that are truly awesome!
- IM Creator (also a free website template site)
I really hope you found this post useful and you can start DIY-ing and creating your very own beautiful graphics, for your blog, your invites, posters, and presentations! We should definitely bring more pretty into the world!
Thanks for stopping by and chat soon!