Paint.Net Free Tutorials

Tutorials for Paint.Net

As you all know (or at least those that are into free but brilliant software) Paint.Net is one of those wonderful pieces of software that not only works, but is somehow better than much of the commercial stuff that’s out there. Anyway for those of you using this great software I have found a mixture of free tutorials for the software.

Colour and B&W photo effect:
Antique effect:
Whiten Teeth:
Enhance colour:
Pencil Sharp Edges:

One of the features that sets this software apart from so many others is the great collection of addins available. These addins add a wonderful array of functionality to the software to enable it to easily compete with Photoshop and other commercial software. The great thing about Paint.Net is that (a) it’s free – donationware and (b) it’s robust and (c) it’s easy to use.

A quick scan on for tutorials shows 100’s of really good tutorials and videos to help use the software and create some great effects. I easily give this software 5/5 and recommend it to everyone that wants a very comprehensive free graphics package. Oh, and bye the way it works great with Windows 7 and has very comprehensive support for masks and layers.

One last comment… be sure to check out the very popular Paint.Net forum for expert advice and help.

Free and Legal Images

5 Sources for Free and Legal Images

5 Sources for Free and Legal Images from the Blog Herald

xobni – scrabble – opensource business intelligence

Xobni – Search Your Outlook Email Inbox

Xobni is the Outlook plug-in that helps you organize your flooded inbox.

Turn a Scrabble Board into a Picture Frame

Turn a Scrabble Board into a Picture Frame – Scrabble picture frameLife, Clue, Hungry Hungry Hippos: we’ve never met a board game we didn’t like. Still, Scrabble’s our favorite. We’re not alone in our Scrabble obsession, either. Some folks memorize Scrabble-admissable words like uey, muhly, and zo, but have no idea what they mean.* Some even earn their bread on the Scrabble tournament circuit.

Sadly, Scrabble sets are often abandoned due to missing tiles. Fortunately, an unplayable game can be salvaged by turning it into a kickass picture frame/bulletin board/slice of awesome.

Open Source Business Intelligence

Pentaho Corporation is the commercial open source alternative for Business Intelligence (BI). Pentaho BI Suite Enterprise Edition provides comprehensive reporting, OLAP analysis, dashboards, data integration, data mining and a BI platform that have made it the world’s leading and most widely deployed open source BI suite. Pentaho’s commercial open source business model eliminates software license fees, providing support, services, and product enhancements via an annual subscription. In the years since Pentaho’s inception as the pioneer in commercial open source BI, Pentaho’s products have been downloaded more than three million times, with production deployments at companies ranging from small organizations to The Global 2000.

Paint.Net – Free graphics program with support for layers logo is a free graphics program similar to Microsoft Paint but a lot more powerful. Windows users may prefer it’s simple interface compared to the GIMP, which can be complicated for the first time user. The software requires the .Net framework from Microsoft to run, but this is pretty much installed on most PC’s these days. has numerous features that make it a very useable program, that’s completely free; it has support for layers, unlimited undo’s, special effects, plus much more. A nice touch is the facility to use bezier curves normally only found in higher end graphics programs. The software is distributed under an opensource license.

SSMM – Slide Show Movie Maker

This software will create a full AVI slideshow (up to 2Gb in size) with sound/music, etc. The ssmm slideshow movie maker software has plenty of clever effects and is totally free. There are plenty of fade effects and overlays; there’s even a full online video tutorial (which does not have any sound”This will easily create the perfect slideshow for your family with all the effects and background music you could want.”

You could of course convert the AVI file to another format and burn to CD and post to your granny if you wanted.
This software runs on all Windows operating systems and requires audio in WAV (16-Bit Stereo 44,1 Khz PCM) format.

Free stock photos metasearch

Sourcing Stock Imagery

We all need stock imagery from time to time and I think this is one of the areas of design that has steadily improved with the passing years.

Firstly, if you have very specific imagery needs and/or a lack of time, commercial stock houses like iStockPhoto, Corbis and (our sometime Design View sponsor) have the range, and have become cheaper, more flexible (license-wise) and dramatically more usable over the past 3-4 years. Hooray for competition!

But perhaps the least expected development has been the continued rise of free image resource sites. It seems the breathtaking success of Flickr has helped to entrench the idea of sharing your imagery with the world, and free stock sites like, MorgueFile and Image:After have reaped the benefits in the form of an increasing influx of quality imagery from their communities.

Now, with the release of, locating free stock imagery just got a little easier.

I’d describe Picfindr as a free stock site metasearch application, allowing you to query a handful of sites simultaneously, then review the results in a single window.

Rick Englert, developer of the service, describes it as “minimalist at the moment” — somewhere between alpha and beta — but already it provides some great features, including intelligent searching and allowing users to exclude images on the basis of their licensing requirements (i.e. author crediting, altering the image, or permission prerequisites).

Plans are also afoot for more advanced search options, including ‘AND/OR’ options and the ability to search by color, size or orientation.

All up, Picfindr is still a little raw, but already it’s a handy, free service that only seems likely to get better. Check it out.