Free For All: Photoshop Brushes, Fonts, and Image Tools

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ColorSuckr
Print and Web designers and illustrators often want to extract one or more colors from an image. Typically, it's a tedious process of clicking the Eyedropper tool to pick up the desired color, switching to the Swatches panel, and creating and naming a new swatch, or hovering the Eyedropper tool over pixels and writing down the color value from the Info panel. The more colors in the image, the longer and more boring this process is likely to become.

Until now.

ColorSuckr is a new Web-based tool that takes any image, finds its dominant colors, and creates swatches from them -- in seconds! The resulting colors are displayed in your browser as visual swatches accompanied by HTML hex color values, HTML hex color values adjusted to fit within the Web Safe palette, and as standard RGB color formulas. You can download the complete set of colors as an Adobe Swatch Exchange ASE file compatible with most major Adobe applications. There's also a permalink to the color results for sharing results with clients and colleagues. Links beneath each swatch generated from an image even show popular color schemes incorporating the swatch from ColourLovers.com.

The only drawback to ColorSuckr is its inability to receive an image uploaded from your computer. It only accepts images that are already online, so before sending your picture to the application, you’ll need to first upload it to a Flickr account or other Web site.

Fractal4DFractal4D is an interesting application with a highly specialized use: It lets you draw fractal swirls and light streaks that can be exported to vector format for use within Illustrator, or to PNG format for Photoshop and Fireworks usage. Design the effects in Fractal4D, export, and add them to your existing or new designs in one of your main tools to create an effect similar to the one shown below.

Photoshop Brushes
This time I’ve got an eclectic assortment of free Photoshop brushes for you.

Vectorwellen
Ultimate Grass Brush Set (50 in Set)
Vector Line Brushes 2 (15 in Set)
Vector Skulls (9 in Set)
Texture/Vector Brushes (37 in Set)
Spray Paint Brushes (7 in Set)
Dirty Spray Paint Brushes (8 in Set)
Acrylic Paint Brushes (40 in Set)
TomLedin.com Set #42
Free Fonts
Can’t get enough funky free fonts? Me neither!

Futurex Slab
Hearts
Kingthings Willow
Social Animal
The King & Queen Royally
Caldera (Batch Image Size & Rename)
Similar to Shrink O’ Matic, which I discussed in a previous Free for All, Caldera is an Adobe AIR-powered image processor. It can resize, rename, or convert one or more folders of JPG, PNG, and/or GIF images en masse.

Although the limited file formats supported -- JPG, PNG, and GIF -- make it less useful for print-only designers, Caldera is exceptionally useful for repurposing print content for online distribution. Web designers will find it invaluable.

For instance, in the area of resizing images, Caldera can process thousands of images of various sizes, fitting them to a specific width and/or height or resize according to a percentage of the image’s original size, such as 50% or 200%. Although Caldera doesn’t have as many file naming options as Bridge or Photoshop’s Image Processor, it can still make short work of renaming thousands of files to fit a uniform standard, complete with a filename prefix and auto-incrementing number. Finally, images can be converted from their source formats to PNG, GIF, or variable quality JPG. Unfortunately Caldera doesn’t provide transparency, color count, or any other options for PNG or GIF output.

What can I find free for you? Want more free fonts? More Photoshop brushes? How about more online applications that do this or that for free? Tell me in the comments what you’d like to see in future installments of Free for All, and I’ll do my best bloodhound impression to track it down for you.

Please note: Free for All will often link to resources hosted on external Web sites outside of the control of CreativePro.com. At any time those Web sites may close down, change their site or permalink structures, remove content, or take other actions that may render one or more of the above links invalid. As such neither Pariah S. Burke nor CreativePro.com can guarantee the availability of the third-party resources linked to in Free for All.

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