Extending your skillset

Adobe's 3rd Party Plugins page

Filter Forge is a pretty cool texture plugin, and the site is a great resource for textures.

If you just want to experiment and don't want to pay for plugins free Photoshop plugins site is available.

Smashing Magazine has a nice article covering a bunch of Photoshop tutorials.

Also Lynda dot com offers access to a full tutorial library for around $25 per month. For those without the cash, Youtube and Vimeo are examples of video sites where you can do a search for "Photoshop tutorial" and come up with some neat stuff.

Design Tools and Links

Color Websites
Colr.org - Develop schemes from photos, websites, and view shared color schemes.

Colr Pickr - Find Flickr photos that match any color.

Color Schemer - Browse color schemes that people have created and shared.

Color Scheme Generator 2 - Use color tools to generate different color schemes, with the ability to view them as color-blind people will see them (bottom-right menu).

COPASO color generator - Another one with some advanced features.

Adobe Kuler - Adobe's color scheme tool.

Desktop Color Software
Color Cop - Desktop color picker tool for Windows - very handy.
Mondrianum - Macs come with a built-in color picker, but this one is a fun addition to it.

GColor2 - Linux (Gnome) color picker tool that lets you save your colors for future use. There is also a KDE application called "KColorChooser"

Typography Links

Some people get really, really picky about typography. Complaining about the font used on a gear shifter seems a little extreme, but Mercedes do spend a lot of money on typographic design - even to the point of having superstar typographer Kurt Weidemann create the Corporate font trilogy for Mercedes Benz.

Like many organizations, Stanford University has made a set of design guidelines for Stanford publications. Included are a set of typography guidelines that are interesting to read. SF State University has also prepared a similar page; you'll notice that both schools allow designers to fall back on Times and Arial because these two fonts are guaranteed to be found on any computer.

Use a tool like Esperfonto to help make decisions about which typeface to use.

If you would like to explore some free fonts, take a look at a site like Dafont. If you're interested in broadening your horizons and looking into professional fonts, check out MyFonts.

Try to avoid overused fonts.

Aanother site lists the seven "worst" fonts, by which they mean "inappropriately used".

Some graphic designers were asked, "if you could only purchase six fonts, which would they be?"

A "Lorem Ipsum" text generator can come in very handy for generating "dummy" text.

Short letterpress & typography documentary

How one artist views software in the process of creation

The artist in question is Andrew Jones and you watched him using a software package called Alchemy.

Have a favorite tool or design-related link? Let me know about it!