Join Richard Harrington for an in-depth discussion in this video Useful websites for source elements, part of Motion Graphics for Video Editors: Creating Backgrounds.
I recognize that often times you're under crunches, you need to get things done right away and perhaps you don't have access to the company's credit card or the client would prefer you to be a bit more frugal. I'd like to show you some web sites where you can access free textures and free images. Now with anything that's free, you're always going to want to read the terms of service. But these are some of the websites that match my needs. In looking into the terms of service, I felt comfortable using these in my projects. But, be sure you explore the terms of service on your own, and check with your client or your supervisor to make sure that they feel they meet your company's needs.
One of my favorite ones is a website called Texture King. And they have a bunch of textures. You'll note that it's just a grab bag of organic textures but you could choose from categories. For example, jumping to a bunch of fabric textures or going to something that's rust or paint. And these textures are all photographic. On this website they do have other textures available for sale and it is ad supported, so keep that in mind. But there are lots of pages of textures and if you find something simply click the download button to pull it down.
Now this particular website is filled with a bunch of paper textures that match all sorts of great sources from. Old invoices to crumpled notebook paper, printer paper, music sheets. All sorts of things. And these can really create a nice, organic look. Lastly, I put together a collection of links on my personal website. If you go to richardharrington.com and click on Resources and choose Free Images. You'll find a list to several US government websites, and these websites have extensive photo libraries, including great outer space images from companies like NASA.
And you can explore here to see different views from outer space or other things such as the Earth, being able to get maps, or organic images of say bacteria from the Center for Disease Control. You'd be surprised at how useful some of these can be as you go in and take a look for a search. For example, let's do a search for Flu and value might not recognize it that's the Flu virus and if you were doing a graphic about the Flu having a microscopic view of the Flu virus might be very motivated as the texture that you use in your background layer.
So don't feel like if you can't find something on a free site, you're out of luck. If you're willing to spend a bit of money, there's a lot out there.
- The role of backgrounds in video
- Achieving proper color and contrast
- Gathering source material
- Working with gradients
- Filtering and blending backgrounds
- Using patterned tiles
- Shooting background plates
- Stacking and blending footage
- Designing backgrounds with the effects in After Effects