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Old Paper

1st edition — by Patrick McNeil — Apr. 14, 2006


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The Design Element

Using old paper products in your design is a great way to generate some atmosphere and cut through the technical feel you might feel stuck in. We have such a connection with paper, we use it all the time, and we don't associate it with the computer as much as we do with being tangible. The mind set is slightly different. It creates a comfortable organic feel.

The first thought that comes to mind is to suggest that you unplug from the computer and see what you find. Root through an attic, basement, or the old books at the library. You are bound to uncover some incredible pieces of paper you could scan in and use for your design. Don't be tempted to create a hokie paper texture in photoshop just because you are to lazy to find something to scan. Your design will be so much more powerful if you just take the steps to give it life. I have provided five paper textures free for the download at the bottom of this page. Hopefully these will get you started and perhaps inspire some leg work!

In a lot of ways these sites speak for themselves, so I will just leave you to browse them and get inspired.


Sample Usage



green 1green 2paper 1paper 2stain 1



A great source for a few free paper images:
Rare Books & Special Collections

iStockPhoto is a terrific source of nice paper images to work with, and you can get them cheap.

Mayang free paper textures

Folded paper Photoshop brushes (excellent)



Ryan Doggendorf

4/16/2006 10:53:35 AM

its an open notebook, but I thinks its good for paper section

Ryan Doggendorf

4/16/2006 10:54:05 AM

its an open notebook, but I thinks its good for paper section


4/17/2006 4:55:48 PM

Some beautiful sites there! And thank you for the paper textures :)


5/8/2006 11:59:40 AM

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