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Favorite Web-Based Design Tools

July 5th, 2009 2 comments

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I’ve been talking a lot about Gaming and Search Engines in my previous posts so I thought I would change directions this time and do a post on design. For the first entry on this topic I thought I would share some of my favorite web-based design tools. If you are ever in the mood to do some designing on the computer and are away from your pc (and assuming there is a computer with an Internet connection around) you can turn to these web-based options. While these tools wont replace your Adobe products they are quite powerful and can get you by in a pinch. And best of all they are free! Here are some of my favorites.

design-pixlr

Pixlr is an advanced online image a photo editor. Supported image formats include .jpg, .jpeg, .gif, .png, .psd, and .pxd (pixlr’s native format). Upon opening the program those familiar with with Photoshop will be greeted with a familiar layout and tools such as the lasso, wand, clone stamp, and smug tools to name a few as well as many advanced filters. And most importantly it supports layers. While no sign-in is necessary files can only be output as .jpeg, .png, .bmp. and .pxd layered formats. No PSD yet. A new feature to the program even allows users to use pixlr to edit photos in facebook directly.

design-sumopaint

Sumo Paint is a powerful vector web-based painting application. Like pixrl you are greeted with a familiar layout and tools, and layers are also supported. If you don’t want to create an account .jpg, .jpeg, .gif, and .png formats can be uploaded and files can be saved as .png and .jpg. However, you will need to create an account if you want to save layered files which are saved in Sumo Paints native file format.

design-colorlovers

COLOURlovers is best described as a color and design community that monitors color trends. One of the best tools on the site called COPASO. COPASO is a color palette tool that helps users develop color themes. Options include a color picker, photo tool, and a color theory wheel. If you create an account you can even save your palettes to your computer for use in other programs.

design-aviary

If your looking for all your tools in one location, Aviary is the site for you. Web based options include:

* Phoenix (Image Editor)
* Toucan (Color Palettes)
* Peacock (Effects Editor)
* Raven (Vector Editor)
* Falcon (Image Markup)

While these web-based options will not replace programs like Illustrator and Photoshop they can be quite helpful and even get the job done when these programs are not available. And for those just starting out they can let you explore your creativity without the hefty price tag.

Some additional screenshots.

pixlr

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sumo paint

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colourlovers

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aviary

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