Photoshop, Uncategorized

Thrilling and Inspiring Fantasy Art Photoshop Tutorials

I must admit that fantasy art tutorials are perhaps my best and most beloved choice of photoshop lessons.

This teaches not only the techniques and how to apply particular filters to a certain layer but also inspires and gives the artist, even if he is still a beginner — a lot of inspiration, ideas, and a new way of looking at the same standard photoshop tools that are available to all of us. I believe we all have a little artist living inside us, and whether will we unleash it or not, depends entirely on us.

However, it’s no sin to draw inspiration from other sources and learn from other’s experiences, so here we gathered a list of all the best, all-time-favorite fantasy art tutorials that will help to turn your photoshop into an art-making machine…

These are all very magical and very mystic artwork. If you ask, what is esotericism, this might be the right answer..

Surreal Photoshop Composition – Fallen Angel’s Dream Flight

magical and fantasy effects

Combine Photo Elements to Create a Surreal Scene

magical and fantasy effects

Predators of Heaven Photo Montage

Sinking Moon Eclipse Photoshop Tutorial

magical and fantasy effects

Mystical Moonlight Effect

magical and fantasy effects

How to Design a Dramatic Winged Dragon in Photoshop

magical and fantasy effects

Creating Your Own Fairytale Scene

magical and fantasy effects

Create a Fantasy Illustration in Photoshop

magical and fantasy effects

Dark Surreal Illustration in Photoshop

magical and fantasy effects

Create an Out of Bounds Fantasy Illustration

magical and fantasy effects

Creating a Touching Story Scene in Photoshop

magical and fantasy effects

Creating a Fantasy Scene

magical and fantasy effects

Create an Underwater Room Scene

magical and fantasy effects

Galaxy Angel

magical and fantasy effects

Create a Magic Crystal Ball

magical and fantasy effects

Surreal Fantasy Art

magical and fantasy effects

Surreal Floating Eiffel Tower Scene

magical and fantasy effects

Surreal Landscape Photo Manipulation

magical and fantasy effects

Mysterious Lightning

magical and fantasy effects

Fantasy Night Sky

magical and fantasy effects

Fable of the Night Matte Painting

magical and fantasy effects

The White Tree

magical and fantasy effects

Surreal Orange Sky Scene

magical and fantasy effects

Create a Fantasy Tree

Photoshop

Stay Safe The Next Time You Photograph in Extreme Weather

Heat wave sign on the city. Heat wave concept

Some people say that photographers don’t have enough sense to come in out of the rain.  Little do they realize that rain is often the least of our worries. We often expose ourselves to weather extremes – heat, cold and unpredictable storms to name a few – in search of that perfect picture.

Fortunately, there are some commonsense guidelines that – if followed – will help keep you safe even in the most extreme of weather circumstances. 

Extreme Cold

Cars and trucks driving on snow packed roads taken through a windshield covered with snowflakes.

Who has not dreamed of capturing penguins in the Antarctic, polar bears in the Arctic, or the dramatic Northern Lights that seem to only appear in the coldest parts of the world?  The key to successful shooting in extreme cold is to dress appropriately and protect your gear.

Thermometer with celsius scale placed in a fresh snow showing sub-zero temperature minus 30 degree – extreme cold winter weather concept

Dress in layers-Making sure you are dressed correctly will help protect you in even the most severe cold.  Layers make it possible to trap and keep warmth close to the body allowing you to comfortably stay out in the cold longer.  A base layer of light, breathable moisture wicking cloth next to the body. Synthetic thermal undergarments are the best while cotton is the worst.  Add an insulating layer or two of wool, polyester or fleece to help trap the warmth. And finally add a wind and waterproof outer layer to protect from the elements.

Hats and gloves are a must for shooting in extreme cold.  A good investment are fingerless mittens that allow you to operate your camera equipment without exposing your hands with a pair of warm outer mittens you can quickly put on when needed.

Rainbow on the horizon over the Kasha-Katuwe Tent Rocks National Monument in New Mexico

Keep feet warm and dry by layering wicking inner socks with one or more pairs of warm woolen ones inside water resistant boots.  Disposable hand and foot warmers are a great addition when the temperatures are especially low.

Protect your camera gear– Rain covers for the camera body and hoods for the lenses will keep falling snow, ice and rain from hitting your gear.  Some people like to use a clear UV filter, which is easy to wipe dry without worrying about harming the expensive glass, but you need to be aware that this will cut down on your available light and may affect the quality of your shots.

Batteries lose their power quickly in cold environments.  A handy trick is to use disposable hand warmers attached with a rubber band around the battery compartment to help keep them charged longer.   Keep extra batteries in your inner pockets next to the warmth of your body to keep them from draining too quickly. “Dead” batteries can sometimes find new life if they are warmed up again, so keep your used ones close to you in case you need that extra power.

And finally, have a plan for when the cold gets too much.  Having access to a car or shelter to warm up – if even for a few minutes – can keep you and your gear safe and shooting for hours on end.

Extreme Heat

Preparing yourself for extreme heat – such as shooting in the desert or tropical environs – takes a bit of planning as well.  Again, attention should be give to both dress and equipment.

Heat wave sign on the city. Heat wave concept

Dress for the Heat-Opt for lightweight, light colored loose fitting clothing.  The goal is to cover as much skin as possible to protect from the suns damaging waves.  Wearing long pant and long sleeves with UVA/UVB protection if you will be exposed to the direct sunlight for extended periods.  Use a well-vented, wide brim hat to protect your face, neck, head and ears from the sun. Add a good pair of sunglasses to complete your protection.

Camera equipment protection– Humidity will cause extreme condensation on your lenses and camera bodies when traveling in and out of air conditioning in tropical conditions.  Placing your camera in airtight bags and allowing the camera body and lens to adjust to outside temperature before removing from bag will minimize fogging.  Use moisture absorbing desiccant packs inside camera bags if you are going to be exposing your equipment to humidity for extended periods.  

Keep unused equipment in airtight plastic bags.  Try keeping you kit out of harsh sunlight when not shooting, and NEVER leave your gear inside a car or trunk.  Temperatures can reach damage causing levels quickly in hot environments. 

And probably the most important consideration when working in extreme heat is to stay hydrated – drink lots of liquid but avoid caffeine, alcohol and sugary drinks.  Seek out shade as much as possible, and try restricting movement to the bare minimum during the most intense periods of the day. A good sunscreen on any exposed areas will help to further protect from sun damage.

Dust 

Enemy number one for DSLR sensors is dirt and sand. While precautions should be taken in any outside environment to avoid contaminating your camera body, shooting in a desert or a beach requires extra consideration.

NEVER change lenses in a dusty or sandy environment.  If you think your will want to use more than one lens during your shoot have an extra camera body of each one.   If you find yourself in situation where you must change lenses, do so completely within an airtight bag to simulate a clean environment.  

Fine sand and dirt can infiltrate even the tightest of seals.  In extreme situations it is wise to keep your camera in an airtight container at all times. Underwater casings can be used for this, or you can fashion a casing yourself using zip-type plastic bags.

The next time you find yourself called by the lure of that perfect picture –be ready no matter what Mother Nature may try to throw at you by being prepared to protect yourself and your gear.

Stock photos and illustrations via Dreamstime.com

Photoshop

How to Remove Backgrounds from Images

Sooner or later every photographer wants to learn how to remove backgrounds from images in Photoshop.  Maybe they are trying to isolate an object to use in a composite.  Or maybe they want to remove the sky to replace it with a more dramatic one.  Whatever the reason, it is definitely a skill every advanced post processor should know. 

Select the Subject

The first challenge is to select either the background to be removed or the subject to be isolated.  There are several options to do this. The least eloquent of these is to use the Quick Select tool in Photoshop.  If your subject is uniform in shape and coloring, this method will probably be sufficient.

However, if there are irregularities to the subject, other tools may be more appropriate.  The Select – Subject menu option can work well providing the subject is well defined. If you shot on a Green Screen the Select – Color Range is probably your best option.

Macintosh HD:Users:karenfoley:Desktop:Screen Shot 2019-11-10 at 7.56.22 AM.png

The most precise, and tedious, method is to use the Pen tool to draw the boundary of the subject to select.  

Regardless of the method chosen, detail like wispy hair can be impossible to define without further refinement, which is where the Select – Select and Mask tool is used.

Macintosh HD:Users:karenfoley:Desktop:Screen Shot 2019-11-10 at 7.57.22 AM.png

Select and mask

Macintosh HD:Users:karenfoley:Desktop:Screen Shot 2019-11-10 at 7.58.50 AM.png

Refining the selection using this tool is a straightforward process.  In the Select and Mask dialogue box, Set View Mode to View on Layers to clearly show the selected areas.  In Edge Detection, set Radius to 4px and check the Smart Radius box. Now use the Refine Edge Brush Tool to work around the edges to remove, or OPT (or ALT on Windows) Refine Edge Brush Tool to add back in, pixels around the edges.

Tick the Decontaminate Colors and adjust the Amount slider to ensure none of the background color tint remains (this is especially important for green screen), and choose Output to New Layer with Layer Mask.  The subject is now isolated with a clipping mask.  

Macintosh HD:Users:karenfoley:Desktop:Screen Shot 2019-11-10 at 8.00.05 AM.png

To remove the background, simply CMD-Click on the output layer, choose Select – Inverse from the menu bar, click on the background layer and either mask or delete the pixels.

Masking with Channel Pull

Macintosh HD:Users:karenfoley:Desktop:Screen Shot 2019-11-10 at 7.40.13 AM.png

For trickier selections, using the alpha channel channels to pull selections for a mask can be the most eloquent solution if you have an advanced comfort level with Photoshop.  Let’s use this image as an example and use channel pulling to remove the sky.

Macintosh HD:Users:karenfoley:Desktop:Screen Shot 2019-11-10 at 7.42.11 AM.png

First, duplicate the background layer (to preserve the original) and work on the copy level.  Open the Channels panel. Click through the RBG layers to find the one that gives you the most contrast between the subject and the background ( in our case the blue in the sky makes the blue channel the one to work with) – and duplicate that layer.

Create a Level adjustment and use the sliders to make the background pure white and the foreground as dark as possible without losing details.

Macintosh HD:Users:karenfoley:Desktop:Screen Shot 2019-11-10 at 7.44.13 AM.png
Macintosh HD:Users:karenfoley:Desktop:Screen Shot 2019-11-10 at 7.48.05 AM.png

Using Cmd-Click will select all of the white areas.  Sometimes you will select some of the foreground area especially if it is the same color as the background.  You can either use the Quick Selection Wand to remove those areas or see how we deal with that in a minute. Now enable the RBG channel and disable your Channel copy.  Return to the Layers panel. Since we want to mask out the background (the area that is currently selected) and keep the foreground, let’s Select – Inverse to select the subject area, and then use the Add to Layer Mask icon at the bottom of the panel.

The mask now completely removes the sky background, but you may notice that’s some of the foreground (especially the blue areas) have been removed as well.  Paint them back in by clicking on the mask, choosing the paintbrush with white in Overlay Mode on a hard brush and paint over the areas to bring it back in.   

Macintosh HD:Users:karenfoley:Desktop:Screen Shot 2019-11-10 at 7.51.30 AM.png

Karen Foley is a freelance photographer and frequent contributor to dreamstime.com.  See more of her work at karenfoleyphotography.com.

Photoshop

5 Content Marketing Strategies IT Marketers Should use in 2019

What is Content Marketing?

Content marketing is a type of marketing that involves the creation of content that can be shared online through social media posts, videos, or blogs. Content marketing allows companies to promote their products and services with the focus on creating and distributing valuable and relevant content.

This 2019 ROI-driven IT Marketing Guide that every marketer should follow outlines the foundational components to a great IT marketing strategy and key steps to implementing a comprehensive marketing plan.

Benefits of Content Marketing

Content marketing and tactics can help you attract and engage with prospective customers by delivering quality content that provides high value to the people that visit your site. Content marketing has many benefits as it is one of the most effective and practical forms of digital marketing that your brand can use.

Below are some of the amazing benefits that content marketing has to offer:

  • Content marketing can help to drive conversions: Overtime, content marketing helps to drive more conversions on your site. Companies are able to create consistent marketing content have higher conversion rates than those who do not focus on content marketing at all. Your primary goal with content should be to engage, help, inform, and to bring value to your readers. If this is done tactfully, it can easily help you to increase the number of conversions that you get.
  • Effective content marketing can help to drive more traffic to your website: With consistent content being posted on your site, it helps to bring more traffic to your website over time. With high quality content being created, whether it’s through blog posts or web content, it will help to improve site traffic
  • Quality content helps to build trust with your target audience: By providing your readers with quality information, the more trust that your brand can build over time. By informing your readers about the struggles and problems that they are facing, you begin to establish a relationship with customers and start to build trust based on the value that your content provides.
  • Valuable content can help you to build credibility and authority with your readers: The quality content that you provide to your readers will translate into credibility and authority which means the readers will continue to come back to your site for more information.

Content Marketing Strategies for IT Marketers

Now that we have looked at the many benefits of content marketing, how can you use them to build your brand and grow your company? Below are some of the strategies that you, as IT marketers, can follow.

  1. Create Content Marketing Goals

By setting short-term and long-term marketing goals, it helps to stay in track and see where your company is headed in a short-term and long-term perspective. It is best to sit down with your company and develop these goals. Any good content strategy requires good planning. By following these five essential steps listed below, it can help to create a foundation for a successful content strategy plan:

  • Know your business
  • Know your audience
  • Find an original voice
  • Write down your short-term and long-term goals
  • Make sure your goals are realistic and measurable
  1. Do Not Overlook the Power of Social Media: IT marketers looking to grow their businesses should not overlook the potential social media has. Integrating social media into your content strategy can bring your business great success. Social media allows your brand to have its own voice and helps to bring any social media’s platform and its customers to your brand.
  1. Effective Content Marketing Requires Cross-Channels

Content marketers publish content that meets intent in several channels where prospects are likely to be. Communicating with consumers on single marketing channels can be beneficial, however, with the use of multiple channels, you are able to reach even more potential consumers and increase your conversion rates. By creating promotions where customers of one products can be targeted with promotions of related products, it can help IT marketers to grow their business. Don’t have time to do this all by yourself? Check out this list of best consulting firms in Chicago to choose from.

  1. Use Your Content to Drive Leads to Your Sales Funnel:

What exactly is a sales funnel? According to Leadpages, a sales funnel is “the process from when you first drive traffic to your landing page to the moment you finish the sale”. By learning the methods of attracting traffic to your site, you can slowly build your audience.

Higher the quality of the content, the more chances there are to drive more leads. Content can be leveraged in several different ways, and how to choose to leverage them depends on your goals and budget. You can also build sales funnels to drive leads. Follow these three processes on how to build a sales funnel.

  1. Gain Authority Link By Guest Posting

Guest posting is one of the best ways to bring exposure to your content. Guest posting allows for search engine rankings to place your content at the top that allows for more traffic to come to your site.

  1. Make Use of On-Page SEO

Search engine optimization (also known as SEO) is very effective in getting your site to rank higher on Google and is one of the most effective content marketing strategies. SEO is the practice of optimizing websites that align with search engine algorithms (in this case, Google). SEO tells the search engine that your website is relevant to specific search queries and makes your content available to the users seeking for your content. On-page SEO methods are free and with consistent efforts, produce great results.

The Bottom Line

Content marketing is one of the best ways to invest your marketing money into. There are many variables at play, that it can become difficult to juggle all things at once. By following these steps, IT marketers can help grow their businesses and see success in their companies.

Content marketing strategies offer a great return on your investment in marketing. It can help to drive conversions, bring more traffic to your site, help you to build a loyal following and trust amongst your readers, and help you to build a credible relationship with your readers.

This guest post comes from JGBilling

Photoshop

Figuring Out Digital Marketing In Today’s Online Climate

Competition in the digital marketplace is fierce. Every day a new website pops up, a new social media platform emerges (or dwindles), and your potential clients are bombarded with messages from your competitors. The best way — and often easiest way — to get your business in front of the right customers is to optimize your website so that search engines can find them properly.

You can optimize your website for search engines yourself, or you can hire an SEO consultant.  Skilled consultants, such as those found in a SEO Agency, can help your website cut through the clutter of competitors. Having an unbiased, skilled eye to analyze your content may be the leg up your business needs. So, how do you know the difference between a seasoned SEO consultant and a talentless hack trying to make a quick buck? The proof is in the pudding.

Before your consultant actually makes any changes to your content, they will do their homework. In other words, they will conduct an audit on your current website and find its weak links. Do you have irrelevant content? Are you not boosting the appropriate content well enough? Is your site organized in a comprehensible way to your audience? Be prepared to leave your ego at the door and take a long hard look at the content you are presenting on your website. Don’t be surprised if your SEO consultant starts to dive into the design of your website. The flow of your website should be able to lead your audience easily to the product, service or information that you have to offer. The presentation of your website should be appealing to your audience. The keyword is your audience, meaning there is no one-size-fits-all aesthetic. It all depends on who you are talking to.

The next step may be an obvious one, but many people overlook it: competition. What is the competition doing? Who is your competition? You may think you are competing with one particular group and wedging your business in a space that it does not belong. Are your competitors highly optimized? Are going up against nationwide or global corporations, or are you going up against regional and local businesses? Is your blog and content on par with similar blogs and content? Depending on what you are trying to accomplish, bigger is not always better.

A skilled SEO consultant should be able to look at the entire landscape of your industry and genre then begin to make a game plan for the trajectory of your business. A skilled and service-oriented consultant will converse with you to determine what is feasible and realistic. The more you do, of course, the more you will pay especially if you are wanting a complete overhaul in both content and design. Don’t let the price daunt you. A great SEO consultant worth their weight in gold is an investment that will produce a high ROI.

Another factor a skilled SEO consultant will take into account is your backlink profile. Backlinks are helpful, especially for newer websites. It’s another way for search engine bots to efficiently discover your site, crawl your content and index it, or organize and record it. It also helps tremendously with organically boosting your content.

Are there any external links leading to your website? If so, are the links of high quality? In other words, are reputable websites with substantial traffic linking to your website? Are the websites within the appropriate category and aligned with your business? For example, if you own a blog about motorcycles, it wouldn’t do your business much good to have external links on a site that attracts an audience interested in European automobiles. Relevance is the name of the game. Traffic that comes to your website from a quality backlink will have a low-bounce rate — meaning that it is relevant and useful to the audience that finds it. A tell-tale sign that your backlink is of low quality is a high bounce rate regardless of the amount of traffic that your content earns through time. Backlinking is all about quality, not quality. Quality backlink sites also come from sites that are index and SEO optimized. These sites are usually more established, have more authority and content. A reputable source is always the best kind.

Conducting a backlink audit isn’t as difficult as it is time-consuming. Though it is not as obvious of a step as looking at the content on your own site, analyzing backlink sites is a step that you cannot afford to overlook. Proper backlinking is as essential in the digital word as networking is essential in the real world. Your backlink audit doesn’t just determine where your backlinks are but potentially creating backlinks if there aren’t many.

Bringing in an SEO consultant to guide your website is an excellent first step to helping your business or blog shine in the digital landscape. While they do take on a majority of the heavy lifting when it comes to SEO programming, a lot of the work is done before they even begin to alter your content. You have to be willing to pull up to the table, roll up your sleeves and be involved in the game plan for your site.

Let’s address the elephant in the room: how much does a skilled SEO consultant cost. That’s a question without a straightforward answer. Depending on the size of the project and turn-around time, your SEO consultant may charge hourly or by the project. Rates can start as low as$55 and go up into the hundreds. Discuss your goals with your SEO consultant. Many tasks are easily completed by one person but some may need a team so that tasks can be delegated appropriately. While many hands make light work, it can also make a more expensive bill. You and your SEO consultant will discuss priorities and timing, and your budget before any billing takes place. It’s also important to remember that an SEO consultant may suggest the optimum level of improvement, but you can decide to break your project up as needed. Smaller tasks can be accomplished quickly even while working on major ones and without adverse consequence from search engines.

 

Photoshop

UX vs. UI: the differences & application in your design

User Interface design & User Experience design, for most people, sound like “web design” and “web design”. At first sight, they look very similar, and almost nobody knows the difference. However, if you look at them closely, there are indeed differences to point out. Both have their own charms and qualities, but one can not do the job without the other.

In our today’s digital world, the competition is tremendous. Web designers have to perform magic and sell their soul to the devil, just to stay on top of the game, yet, clever developers know, that a big part of success lies in super-forces like UX and UI design.

Both disciplines sound very ‘2018’ and can undoubtedly take your product to a higher level. But, although the terms are often used interchangeably, the concepts that lie behind them are not quite the same, so it’s high time to find answers to some pressing questions:

  • What exactly do UI and UX design mean?
  • What are the differences?
  • Why are they relevant to the development of your product?
  • How can you apply them in your design process?

UI: The digital lick of paint

The UI of a website is, in fact, the point where the offered products/services and the potential customer (who would like to know more about it) — meet. It is an instrument with which you can present all the information you want to convey in bite-sized chunks. A “beautiful” interface is stimulating, holds the attention and invites the visitor to take action; after all, it is often the first (and sometimes the only) impression that he gets from your company.

The “wow” factor

UI design takes place in the foreground, is visible to the user and revolves around the “wow factor”. Sometimes, its’ charm is in the small details, such as the shape of a button or a breathtaking choice of typography. In any case, the style has to fit in with what you want to convey as a company. Are you a pioneer in technology? Then a sleek design is something for you. Do you organize neighborhood braziers? Then choose a theme that radiates coziness.

Case study: Bells and whistles are not always necessary for a successful UI design. Authentic Weather is a good example  – it is a stubborn weather app with the slogan ‘No bullshit, just the f*cking weather’. The app is designed in such a humorous way that you still want to check what kind of (f*cking) weather it is today. The design is simple,  straightforward yet very effective. The relatively bare layout fits well with the blunt language, without being boring.

The effectiveness of different UI elements can be tested easily with A / B testing. Does a red button produce more interaction than a green one? Are visitors more inclined to read a blog posts when you add images? Put together an experiment and let the data answer your questions. With that conversion data, you get an objective view of the behavior and the implicit preferences of your visitors. Most people think that A/B testing was designed for testing out the effectiveness of advertising campaigns, but in reality, it can (and should be!) used for testing the usability of your own web pages.

UX: An experience in itself

Now, let’s take one more step further and this is where  UX design comes into the picture. Contrary to UI, the user experience (UX) continues from the point where the screen stops. The emphasis is on what happens in the head of the user during the visit, the emotions that are evoked and the judgment he makes after the interaction.

UX design plays a bit more in the background and is mainly about functionality and structure. It is essential that the purpose of your website and the needs of the user are aligned. What does the visitor want to know or what does he want to do? Which functionalities must be offered to enable him to do so? Besides, it is wise to pay some attention to the way you organize information. Is all information gathered at one place where the user expects it to be? Are all pages accessible within a few clicks?

Ensure a natural user flow

A good UX design is all about a pleasant user flow. The visitor does not have to be handled like a screaming toddler in an amusement park but must be able to follow a consistently smooth path through the website, depending on what he wants to know or find. Such a natural walking path makes the interaction between you and your client practical and meaningful. The user must be able to reflect on his visit with a satisfied smile so that he certainly has a reason to come back in the future. On the other hand, as a web designer who crafts that “walking path” — your goal is to keep the visitors as long as possible on your website.

Case study: The UX design from IKEA. IKEA is a textbook example of an ingenious UX design. The products and manuals are perfectly coordinated, the manuals are simple, universal and recognizable. They are very detailed so that you can effortlessly choose the right one from those 25 seemingly identical boards. Should you still be unable to assemble your Kallax, then you can go to their website for even more support and encouraging words. The UX does not stop immediately after the purchase but continues until that bookshelf finally stands tall in your living room.

By actively evaluating your target group, you can gain insight into the average wishes and characteristics of your website’s visitors. You can then use that knowledge to pick functionalities and shape your design. The perfect UX design requires patience; more often than not, that cycle has to be completed several times before all parts fall into place and even then —  continuous A/B testing is still necessary for progressive improvement.

Can you “design” user experience?

By now, you may probably wonder whether this user experience can be planned out on paper… No. How someone interacts with your website depends on dozens of factors, which you do not have under control. A user who visits your page from a golden beach under a radiant sun will undoubtedly respond differently to someone who has just came home soaking wet from a strong storm. Visitor’s mood, lack or excess of free time, state of mind, weather and other facts may impact his behavior, so you cannot build your strategy from the comfort of your home before even launching your website.

As much control as possible

Although you may not be able to guarantee that your visitors will always load your webpage in a good mood, you can at least ensure that they do not get frustrated during their visit. You may not be able to secure a pleasant user experience, but an awkward structure or limited functionality will certainly damage that experience. You can build your website in such a way that all the ingredients for a positive UX are at least present and all possible obstacles have been eliminated.

Case study: Parxavenue Ltd. This is a Canadian-based web design company that offers only 2 main types of services – digital marketing and web design. Although this is basically all you need to get your product online, not every web design agency offers a fluent UX. Parxavenue have only one entry page where you can find all the information and services you need, without weighing yourself down by tons of useless information, prices, and 12 fake stock photos of “team members”.

Here comes your homework…

It is an absolute must to get started with UX and UI research. This way you can once again view your customers or users from a different angle and develop an even better experience based on their wishes and behavior. By involving your visitors in the design process (whether they are aware of it or not), you can better tailor your website to their needs.

Input from an expert can certainly help you build a more intuitive website design, provided that he does not just impose his own opinion. The only opinion that matters is that of the user. Copying web design elements and marketing strategy from your competitors may work as a good starting point but will not work in the long term, unless you continuously do split testing and optimize your website for YOUR users. What used to be “beautiful” or “in” mere 5 years ago is obsolete today. Bearing all this mind, try and test your website from different angles and remember, that web design, SEO and marketing work is never done. Good luck!

 

Photoshop

The Biggest Annual Essential Web Design Bundle – Only $29

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These web design resources have a clean, modern look, and the code is well structured. Not to mention that they can also be easily modified in just a couple of minutes!

The 50 Essential Web Design Resources Included In This Bundle:

  • 20 Themes With Proven Conversion Records
  • 20 Most Needed Scripts to Add Essential Features
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All these web design resources come with an Extended License allowing you to use them in an unlimited number of personal or commercial projects.

The regular price for this entire bundle of $4,240, but for a limited time, you can get them on Webmaster Deals for just $29.

[su_note]Download 50 Essential Web Design Resources HERE[/su_note]

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5 – RubyMenu Responsive jQuery Accordion Navigation
6 – StickyMenu Responsive Mega Footer Navigation
7 – CSS Button Hover Effects
8 – CSS Star Rating
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10 – Smart Carousel Responsive jQuery Plugin
11 – Social Sidebar
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14 – HTML5 Audio Player
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19 – OpenJobsPro – Laravel Online Job Portal
20 – Youtube API V3 CMS PRO

10 Super Useful Plugins Included In This Bundle:

1 – RoyalTimer Multicolor Countdown Timer WordPress Plugin
2 – Mountain Responsive Coming Soon WordPress Plugin
3 – Prizm Responsive Coming Soon WordPress Plugin
4 – Social Sidebar WordPress Plugin
5 – Circular Countdown WordPress Plugin8 – Charitas – PayPal Donation WordPress Plugin
6 – Sliding Tabs WordPress Plugin
7 – Apex Slider Responsive WordPress Plugin
8 – Charitas – PayPal Donation WordPress Plugin
9 – Easy Bitcoin Realtime Currencies Rates – WordPress Plugin
10 – WooCommerce Product Designer Plugin

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20 Themes Included In This Bundle:

1 – Appbox Responsive App Landing Template

Live Demo

Appbox is a clean & modern design responsive HTML5 & CSS3 App landing page to promote your Android or IOS applications. It can be used to develop any kind of single product landing page.

2 – John Personal Portfolio Theme

Live Demo

John is a creative, elegant and responsive resume theme for any kind of professionals to show personal resume/CV and portfolio in a wonderful way.

3 – Flux Responsive Coming Soon Template

Live Demo

Flux is a creative and professional Coming Soon template. Clean and elegant for every creative people, corporates, agency, e-commerce, business and portfolio.

4 – Auril Creative One Page WordPress Theme

Live Demo

Auril is a clean and modern one page WordPress theme. It is ultimate flexible with loads of nice options and features.

5 – Auril Creative One Page Theme

Live Demo

Auril is a clean and modern one page template. It is ultimate flexible with loads of nice options and features.

6 – Mountain Responsive Coming Soon Theme

Live Demo

Mountain is a responsive, modern and clean under construction/coming soon HTML theme. This minimal theme is packed with a countdown timer, ajax subscription form, social icons and about page where you can write a little bit about yourself and add your phone, email and address information.

7 – Scale Responsive Bootstrap Admin Template

Live Demo

Scale is a premium Bootstrap web application admin template. It’s beautifully coded and fully featured, ready to be implemented in the admin end of your web application, or as an intranet theme. It’s also perfect for your next Rich Internet Application.

8 – Prizm Responsive Coming Soon Theme

Live Demo

Prizm is a responsive minimal, business under construction / landing page / one page template. It includes Ajax MailChimp subscription, Contact Form, Google Maps and CSS animations.

9 – Xenia Responsive One Page Parallax WordPress Theme

Live Demo

Xenia is a clean and modern one page WordPress template built with Bootstrap framework. It is ultimate flexible with loads of nice options and features. It is perfect for corporate, suitable for any type of business and built for any needs. Every single detail is carefully designed and crafted in order to create a seamless and wonderful user experience.

10 – Alison Personal Blog WordPress Theme

Live Demo

Alison is a personal blog theme with gorgeous typography and layout design to build your own personal blog easily.

11 – Renovation – Construction and Renovation HTML Template

Live Demo

Renovation – Construction and Renovation HTML Template is a unique and modern Template that fit for construction, architecture, renovation, remodeling, repairing and all construction and renovation type business. Renovation template has beautiful and unique design that will be best suited for your online web presence. It has 100% responsive design and tested on all major handheld devices.

12 – IBM LAWYER – Attorney & Lawyer Bootstrap Parallax Retina HTML5 Template

Live Demo

IBM LAWYER is Clean, Minimal, Modern and Unique Lawyer HTML5 Template specially designed for Law Firm, Advocate, Attorneys, Legal Advisers, Barristers, Law Counseling Firm, Solicitors, Attorneys, Advocates, Advocates Firm, Justice and Law. All codes are HTML5 and CSS3 validated and all browser compatible and all device supported.

13 – BanaHills Pizza – Restaurant Table Booking HTML Template

Live Demo

BanaHills Pizza is a template that contains 12 pages. Built by Bootstrap 3, compatible with all screen sizes.

14 – KIKO – Simple and Clean WordPress Theme

Kiko is an airy WordPress blog & personal theme designed to stage your content in structured elegance.

15 – Gulza – Easy Startup Landing Page WordPress Theme

Live Demo

Gulza – Easy Startup Landing Page WordPress Theme which is suit for Startup business, Company, Finance company, business portfolio & corporate. Just take the best theme of your choice.

16 – Safa – Multipurpose Business WordPress Theme

Live Demo

Safa Multipurpose Business WordPress Theme suitable for modern businesses. It is 100% responsive and looks stunning on all types of screens and devices. Well organized and very easy to customize, Safa is better way to present your modern business.

17 – Raleway – Bootstrap Agency WordPress Theme

Live Demo

Raleway is WordPress Theme furnished with bootstrap 3x, flexible, responsive features & suitable to create Financial Advisor, Accountant, Consulting Firms etc. Designed by professionals, this business website template holds a clean and beautifully designed structure with impeccable layouts, hover effects, compatibility and more interactive features. It is the most powerful one page WordPress Theme.

18 – Turner – Construction & Architecture WordPress Theme

Live Demo

Own a construction business? In a need to advertise your company online? We have a solution for you! With this this template, you will be able to set up an effective presentation of your brand in an extremely short amount of time and without any difficulty whatsoever! Your website will be available on all known devices and all over the world. Feel like changing the appearance of your website? We present you with an extremely customizable, responsive design bound to satisfy your clients!

19 – Decent Mobile – Responsive Mobile WordPress Theme

Live Demo

Decent Mobile is a premium niche WordPress theme designed specially for mobile phone and News Blog . Decent Mobile features a responsive mobile ready design powered by Bootstrap 3 that looks great on all devices.

20 – Dentist – Dental One Page WordPress Theme

Live Demo

Dental Care is a clean and modern WordPress theme designed especially for dentists, dental practices, dental clinics, dental hygienists, orthodontists, endodontists, health clinics, doctors, oral health care providers and any other health and medical organization.

20 Scripts Included In This Bundle:

1 – Coin Faucet List

Live Demo

Coin is a faucet list of Bitcoin, Litecoin, Dogecoin, Blackcoin, Dash, Peercoin, Primecoin and Bitcoin Cash. Display the top faucets by multiple cryptocurrencies.

2 – Ultimate Youtube Playlist Video Player

Live Demo

Responsive video player to play Youtube playlists. You can enter a Youtube playlist id, channel id or an array of video ids as playlist source.

3 – CSS3 Image Hover Effects

Live Demo

Pure CSS3 hover effects.

4 – RoyalTimer Multicolor Countdown Timer

Live Demo

RoyalTimer comes with flipping animation. You can adjust the flip background color so that it changes over time, or you can use a static background color. Colors are set to digits, the rear panel and signatures. It uses vector data to draw the digits and the panels of the countdown. There isn’t change in the quality of the displayed drawings when it gets resized.

5 – RubyMenu Responsive jQuery Accordion Navigation

Live Demo

RubyMenu is a responsive jQuery vertical navigation with accordion behaviour.

6 – StickyMenu Responsive Mega Footer Navigation

Live Demo

StickyMenu is a mega footer navigation designed and coded to work and fit on any device. It’s fully responsive and comes with a flexible grid system to hold your content within panels.

7 – CSS Button Hover Effects

Live Demo

CSS Button Hover Effects is pure HTML5/CSS3 flat buttons. Buttons have HTML5 structure and work on all major browsers. Buttons are easy to edit and integrate into any website. CSS is separate from HTML.

8 – CSS Star Rating

Live Demo

CSS Star Rating is a simple and easy to use rating or review widget that you can use on your website. This widget is built entirely with CSS3 and HTML5, includes realistic hover forward select and hover back deselect effects like the ones you find in Javascript powered rating widgets plus 6 color themes included.

9 – AlphaMenu Responsive jQuery Mega Menu

Live Demo

AlphaMenu is a user-friendly, highly customizable and responsive jQuery mega menu plugin. It allows you to use multiple menus with different submenus.

10 – Smart Carousel Responsive jQuery Plugin

Live Demo

Smart Carousel is a fully responsive jQuery touch carousel plugin with rich set of features. It is responsive, touch-enabled, fast and smooth. It can be easily integrated into your own web projects. You can customize the visual appearance of the plugin by creating your own skin or using built-in skins/templates.

11 – Social Sidebar

Live Demo

Set of commonly used social icons that transition using CSS ease. This set is super lightweight and could easily be integrated into any website.

12 – Circular Countdown jQuery Plugin

Live Demo

Circular Countdown is a jQuery plugin that comes with many powerful features, it’s very easy to skin with any color or image. Easy to setup and integrate in any project.

13 – Sliding Tabs jQuery Plugin

Live Demo

Fully customizable, lightweight, responsive jQuery plugin for creating beautiful tabs with animated content. You can use it as a menu, or as a simple component. Easily to install, easy to configure. You can customize his appearance with CSS.

14 – HTML5 Audio Player

Live Demo

Custom HTML5 and jQuery Audio Player that brings a uniform look throughout all web browsers. Just add an audio tag with class named HTML5AudioPlayer and initialize the plugin, it’s that simple. It has also a flash fallback if user system doesn’t support HTML5 audio tag.

15 – Apex Slider Responsive jQuery Plugin

Live Demo

Apex Slider is easy to use jQuery image gallery and banner rotator with animated captions, responsive layout and touch support for mobile devices. As navigation you can use bullets, thumbnails, navigation bar and arrows. HTML5, CSS3 transitions are used with fallback.

16 – jQuery Fullscreen Image Gallery v2

Live Demo

Fullscreen flexible categorized and thumbnail used jQuery image gallery including HTML5 audio player with deep-linking.

17 – Smart CRUD – Login & User Management System

Live Demo

We have created the application called Smart CRUD – Login & User Management System with some great features, these are:

18 – ShortUrl – Simple Url Shortener with Multi-language Support

Live Demo

ShortUrl is simple url shortener script with Ads and Multi-language support. Powerful admin panel will help you configure this script especially for your needs.

19 – OpenJobsPro – Laravel Online Job Portal

Live Demo

OpenJobsPro is developed for creating an interactive job portal for employers and candidates. Laravel based web application created for job portal company or other job board websites.

20 – Youtube API V3 CMS PRO

Live Demo

YouTube API V3 CMS PRO builds your video cms that depends on youtube.com videos quickly and easily. It is powered by YouTube and it is fully automated so you don’t need to do anything. It features popular YouTube videos, channels and user profiles. You can also easily monetize this by adding your advertisement code.

10 Plugins Included In This Bundle:

1 – RoyalTimer Multicolor Countdown Timer WordPress Plugin

Live Demo

RoyalTimer is a WordPress Plugin that comes with flipping animation. You can adjust the flip background color so that it changes over time, or you can use a static background color. Colors are set to digits, the rear panel and signatures. It uses vector data to draw the digits and the panels of the countdown. There isn’t change in the quality of the displayed drawings when it gets resized.

2 – Mountain Responsive Coming Soon WordPress Plugin

Live Demo

Mountain is a responsive, modern and clean under construction/coming soon WordPress Plugin. This minimal template is packed with a countdown timer, ajax subscription form, social icons and about page where you can write a little bit about yourself and add your phone, email and address information.

3 – Prizm Responsive Coming Soon WordPress Plugin

Live Demo

Prizm is a responsive minimal, business under construction / landing page / one page WordPress Plugin. This minimal template is packed with a countdown timer, ajax subscription form, social icons and about page where you can write a little bit about yourself and add your phone, email and address information.

4 – Social Sidebar WordPress Plugin

Live Demo

Set of commonly used social icons that transition using CSS ease. Quickly and easily add social links to the side of your WordPress site.

5 – Circular Countdown WordPress Plugin

Live Demo

Circular Countdown is a WordPress plugin that allows you to create easy and fast circular countdown/countup timers for your website. It’s very easy to skin with any color or image. Easy to setup and integrate in any project.

6 – Sliding Tabs WordPress Plugin

Live Demo

Fully customizable, lightweight, responsive jQuery & WordPress plugin for creating beautiful tabs with animated content. You can use it as a menu, or as a simple component. Easy to install and configure. You can customize his appearance with CSS.

7 – Apex Slider Responsive WordPress Plugin

Live Demo

Apex Slider for WordPress is easy to use jQuery image gallery and banner rotator with animated captions, responsive layout and touch support for mobile devices. As navigation you can use bullets, thumbnails, navigation bar and arrows. HTML5, CSS3 transitions are used with fallback. SEO optimized.

8 – Charitas – PayPal Donation WordPress Plugin

Live Demo

Charitas is a multicurrency donation plugin for PayPal merchant. It can have many forms, many campaigns and can be setup for a multilingual site.

9 – Easy Bitcoin Realtime Currencies Rates – WordPress Plugin

Live Demo

Easy Bitcoin Realtime Currencies Rates – WordPress Plugin is a WordPress plugin which shows the 150+ currencies rates of 1 BTC using APIs. It refreshes the data after every minute (Admin can change time). Admin can select Main and popular currencies as well by admin settings.

10 – WooCommerce Product Designer Plugin

Live Demo

An excellent tool that allows your customers to design product according to their ideas, and then add the product to the cart, all information about the design will be included with the order.

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Photoshop

A successful influencer strategy: how do you start?

Everyone is talking about Instagram influencers nowadays. But if you have never worked with influencers, it can be difficult to know where to start. When does an influencer campaign suit your brand and organization? What are the most important questions to ask? And how can you apply influencer marketing to the existing strategies?

Before you begin promoting your brand paying Instagrammers to get the word out, make sure you read about building a brand online – 4 strategies that will help establish your business. Generally speaking, a good influencer marketing campaign starts with a perfect match and ends with useful analytics, with which you can measure success.  There are great influencers in virtually every niche, so with the right information, good research and a well-considered strategy, influencer marketing can be of use to any organization.

1. Does the influencer campaign match your brand?

Perhaps you think of the term ‘Instagram influencers’ mainly for fashion bloggers or vloggers… But the reality is that influencers represent a huge and diverse group of people who use social media to share stories with their audience about topics that interest them. So-called “content creators”. Influencers are important ambassadors for your brand if your strategy works well. Do not “use” them, just because it is a trend or because you hear everyone talking about it. Try and sense the needs of your company and the unique benefits of collaborations.

Public and trust

One of these benefits is the ready-made public that Instagram influencers have gathered during their online careers. Another advantage is the trust consumers have in their favorite bloggers. We know that consumers are often resistant to traditional advertisements. But as long as the content created for the collaboration is authentic and creative, you can be sure that your message will be delivered in a way that really impresses.

Are you looking for a more personal way to connect with your audience? Maybe you want to branch out and reach consumers who rarely engage with your brand or create a new brand image? In any case, there is most likely an effective way to integrate bloggers into your marketing strategy.

2. How does a collaboration with influencers fit into the strategy?

Maybe you think you do not have a budget, or that you can not think of a good concept. In this case, you just need the right influencer! The great thing about influencers is how diverse and flexible they are. There is almost always a way to fit a collaboration into your existing strategy. Depending on your budget and your needs, you can search for micro influencers or larger content creators. Discuss what kind of content they can create. Influencer campaigns are tailor-made. You can use the creativity of the influencer to build an appropriate collaboration.

The possibilities are endless when it comes to influencers, so be creative and do not be afraid to ask input from your future ambassadors!

3. Ensure the perfect match between the Instagrammer and brand

One of the most important steps for recording an influencer campaign is (not surprisingly): finding influencers. Many organizations logically tend to choose influencers with the largest communities. But first, determine the purpose of your campaign before making a choice. Do you want more visibility or more interaction?

If an influencer is really interested in a certain subject or brand, you have a recipe for a powerful collaboration.

A large community does not automatically go hand in hand with more engagement and interaction. Consider, for example, the range and how well an influencer fits your target group. If you aim to build a good relationship with your followers and position your brand and product in the right market, then you need a reliable influencer. Preferably someone who uses your product or service in an authentic way. Investigate the commitment to an influencer’s posts to avoid fake followers. If an influencer has many followers and little commitment, the followers are often fake. Also check out the interests of your chosen influencer.

4. Provide a solid strategy for approaching influencers

The way you approach an influencer is always different. Once you have chosen, do not forget to do your homework properly. Before you approach them, you need to know who you are working with, why you want to work with them and what you ask of them.

Every influencer approaches collaborations differently. Some work with agents, while some arrange everything via dm’s on Instagram. Once you have approached the influencer you have chosen, you need to be flexible in setting up your collaboration. Discuss each step with the influencer and his or her team (if applicable) and make sure you treat this as a professional collaboration.

Do not forget to look at all the relevant figures (reach, engagement, followers) and also at the history and customs of the person you want to approach. Investigate what kind of collaborations the influencer has already done, what content they usually post and how their audience usually responds to the messages.

Compensation

You should also never assume that you can use free products or ‘exposure’ in exchange for actual payment. Some people – especially micro-influencers – may be open to collaborations in exchange for free products. But if someone’s career and a full-time job is content creation, it is actually a bit rough to assume that you do not have to pay them.

5. Provide clear KPIs

Once you’ve started your collaboration, it’s time to set clear goals. A successful campaign needs clear KPIs. Logical, because without goals you do not know when you are really successful.

To determine KPIs, discuss internally and with the influencer what exactly you want to achieve with the collaboration. Do you want to increase your own reach on social media? Then, for example, measure the range of all content you make with the influencer. Do you want multiple people to leave comments, or share content? Then look at the engagement figures.

Term of the campaign

You also need to determine the term of your campaign. Will it be a continuous collaboration or is it a one-off item in exchange for a fixed amount? In any case, you should know what you hope to achieve at the end of the collaboration. And if this is ongoing, you have to make a decision about the important moments to measure your KPIs.

The most important thing is that your goals are realistic. Make sure that you manage the expectations internally well, and discuss with the influencer what is feasible in the area of the chosen KPIs. Use all the data available to measure your successes and determine what the KPIs should be for the next campaign.

And now, how do you start?

Now that you’ve read the tips above, you can get started with the following steps:

    • Determine whether – and possibly how – an influencer collaboration applies to your organization. Look at your own needs and the benefits of influencer marketing.
      Look at your budget and current marketing goals to see how an influencer campaign fits into existing strategies.
    • Do your homework to find the perfect influencer for your organization.
      Develop a tailor-made strategy to approach the influencers of your choice and start defining your campaign.
    • Set up clear KPIs. Go into conversation with your leader people and influencers to get them as clear as possible.

Hopefully, you can get started right away with these steps. Do you have any questions? Ask them via the reaction option below!

Photoshop

Outdoor Photography Tips for When You’re on the Road in Oregon

Oregon is a great place to take pictures. There are so many wonderful opportunities to get that perfect shot, especially if you hit the road in an RV. It allows you to completely immerse yourself in your craft, enabling you to get the kinds of pictures you just can’t seem to get when you’re back at home.

That doesn’t mean you’re guaranteed to get good pictures. In order to boost your chances of getting that perfect shot, make sure you follow these tips when you’re on the road in Oregon.

    1. Know Where to Go

It’s true that you can find great shots anywhere you go, but you can greatly increase your chances of getting the perfect picture if you know where to go to get it.

There are a lot of great locations in Oregon that are worth a stop. A few ideas include:

  • Sweet Creek Falls
  • Thor’s Well
  • Face Rock State Scenic Viewpoint
  • Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor
  • The Oregon Caves
  • Oneonta Gorge
  • Crater Lake National Park
  • Trillium Lake
    1. Don’t Forget About the City

When you think of taking photographs in Oregon, outdoor locales come to mind. It’s true that there’s no shortage of scenic beauty in Oregon, but you shouldn’t forget about the city!

Taking photos of the city is a lot different than taking photos of natural spaces, but they are tricks worth learning. Especially since cities like Portland, Salem, and Eugene contain many great photographic opportunities.

One of the best things about taking pictures in the city compared to taking pictures out in the woods is that it’s a lot easier to take pictures at night. Many of the most striking city photographs are taken after the sun goes down and the city lights are allowed to shine.

    1. Don’t Shy Away from the Weather

Beginning photographers are always looking for clear, sunny weather when it’s time to take photos. More experienced photographers know the best shots come under some of the worst conditions.

Don’t think you have to be stuck in the RV when it starts raining. Make sure you protect your camera, but don’t be afraid to head outside and catch the rain glistening on the leaves.

Snow isn’t common in Oregon, and when it does snow, it doesn’t stick around. That can provide photographers with some great opportunities to catch waterfalls, fields, and the city in unique ways, even if it does mean you have to bundle up to get the shot.

    1. Become a Morning Lark or a Night Owl

The easiest time to take photographs is during the day. Unfortunately, just because that’s the easiest time doesn’t mean it’s the best time.

When it comes to natural lighting, you simply can’t beat the early morning when the sun is rising or the early evening when the sun is setting. If you want to get the best shot, plan to get up early in the morning or stay up late to get it.

You don’t have to pick one over the other either. If your RV trip is all about getting the best photos, consider getting up early in the morning, taking a nap in the afternoon, and heading back out in the evening.

If you get lucky, and the sky is overcast or cloudy, you may be able to get some great shots during the day. Taking photographs in the shade is also an option if you don’t want to waste your entire day waiting for that perfect evening light.

    1. Add Interesting Elements to Your Shots

May photographers like to allow nature’s beauty to shine through in photographs. That’s great, but why not have a little fun with your shots?

That can mean something as simple as taking a picture from a different point of view by laying on the ground or using an extension arm. You can even ask people to get in the shot.

Don’t be afraid to be a little quirky with your photographs! For example, one photographer adds plastic dinosaurs to his shots. Some look like the photographer jumped in a time machine to get the shot, while others, like the shot of the dinosaurs looking out the airplane window, are just plain silly!

It’s true that great photography takes plenty of practice, but knowing a few tricks of the trade can help too. The next time you find yourself on the road in Oregon, boost your chances of getting that perfect shot by following the tips on this list.

Photoshop

Download Spring Garden Watercolor Collection

Spring Garden Watercolor Collection – There are 120 different hands painted floral element such as flowers, leaves, branches, combine them in flower compositions to add some unique touch for your print template or design, the possibilities are mostly endless! Also you will find 26 pre-made PNG scenes – floral corners, wreaths, frames that can be a great addition and final touch for cards, invitations, posters & more. Inside this pack, you will find great bonus files for you! 12 beautiful watercolor spring scenes, fully hand painted! All of the elements, compositions and artworks are super high resolution, up to 14000 pixels!

Download NOW!


  • 120 floral elements with transparent background (1500 – 4000 pixels, PNG)
  • 10 floral wreaths with transparent background (8000×8000 pixels, PNG)
  • 6 floral frames with transparent background (8000×10000 pixels, PNG)
  • 6 floral compositions with transparent background (8000×4000 pixels, PNG)
  • 4 floral corners with transparent background (5000×5000 pixels, PNG)
  • BONUS 12 spring illustrations (7000 – 14000 pixels, PNG)

All images are 300 dpi, RGB color.

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