Photography is a very rewarding pastime, either as a hobby or as a profession. At times, though, photography can be somewhat costly. Thankfully, there are a number of fantastic free photo resources available for photographers of all types.

Free stuff is a great tagline, isn’t it? What kinds of free things can we photographers get? Well, you could always try to talk your great-aunt Trudy into giving you dear Uncle Bob’s classic camera gear. Another way to snag free photo resources is to download actions, templates, and instructional material.

Free photo resources for photographers
Photo by jplenio

Free Photo Resources

Some of my favorite free photo resources are templates, overlays, and preset actions for image processing programs. Let’s start by looking at a few of the better ones of those resources.

10 Free Galaxy Fire Photo Overlays

An overlay is a digital file that is added as a layer to an image file. Obviously, that requires that you are working with an image processing program that makes use of layers when editing images. Adobe Photoshop is one such program, ACDSee is another, and there are others.
These overlays are an interesting effect called Galaxy Fire. They look like a deep space phenomenon or maybe some sort of energy discharge. You can add these to portraits, scenic views, or even studio product shots to create a sense of dynamic energy. The apparent effect doesn’t necessarily work with every subject, but they are fun to play with.

Free Spooky Photo Overlays
You don’t have to wait for Halloween to make creepy photos & creatives. Don’t we all want to create our own spooky version of the mystical forest or a haunted house or an animated webbed photo…? But if we try editing our photos with a professional fog overlay or a pumpkin overlay it can cost us at least a couple of dollars.

Why do you need to spend on something you can get for free? Check out these free Photoshop overlays that will help you add the creep to a completely nieve looking photo!

15 Free Lightroom Presets Bundle

Adobe Photoshop Lightroom has taken the world of image editing by storm. It is one of the most popular photo manipulation programs in use today. Some reasons why are the workflow solutions it offers, and also the wide range of non-destructive image file edits you can accomplish with it.

A lot of these editing actions have been grouped together to make the workflow go even quicker. A preset is a group of saved commands to make a certain style or type of finished photograph. The presets in this bundle include actions that transform a picture into a Black & White photograph, an action that improves clarity in the photo, and actions that mimic the characteristics of classic Kodak films., among other things.

You can quickly change your photos, even preview the effect before applying it. These presets were designed by working professionals and they can enhance your photos to a final pic that looks nothing like an amateur snapshot. It is one of the more versatile of the free photo resources we found.

Free photo resources for beginner photographers
Photo by Chraecker

15 Free Christmas Photo Cards

‘Tis the season! Add in your own photos and customize the message to make a very personalized holiday card with these PS templates.
The card templates are a mix of graphic design elements, some interesting fonts, and your own pics. Create a traditional greeting card, or step out of the box to make a set of holiday cards worth keeping long past the holidays.

30 Free PS Actions for Family Portraits

Portraits are some of the most common photographs taken. Getting a portrait to look both natural and pleasing can sometimes present a challenge. Lighting, contrast, skin tone, these all factor into the finished photo. Photoshop actions can adjust those things. Preset actions make the changes easy.
Even long time serious photographers and professionals can be a little intimidated by working in Photoshop. Preset actions can ease that apparent burden by a great amount. The free actions presented here allow you to change the overall tone of the images, or make lesser changes to enhance small aspects of the portraits.
Also included in free photo resources you can find online are e-books, webinars, and other instructional material. Here is a look at a few of those:

What Camera Should You Really Buy?

Whether pro or amateur, a person known as a serious photographer will eventually get asked, “What camera should I buy?”
This resource can help a person decide what kind of camera to get. It avoids the camera brand wars but discusses the pros and cons of the different types of cameras. SLR cameras, bridge cameras, simple point and shoot cameras, even smartphones with excellent built-in cameras are all examined.

Free photo resources for photographers around the word
Photo by Couleur

Portrait Guide to Posing Women’s Hands

Many people tend to be self conscious when being photographed. As a photographer, we can learn how to assist them to feel more comfortable in front of the camera. That will result in better portraits. Hand placement is the commonly problematic area that is addressed in this free photo resource.
Posing guides work great. Hand positioning is part of posing that is easily directable, if the photographer knows what to do. This guide will make you, the photographer, more comfortable behind the camera, resulting in great portrait sessions.

The Ultimate Guide to Photography In New York City

New York City is one of the most photographed cities in the world. It has iconic landmarks, majestic cityscapes, and a whole lot of interesting facets.
Landmarks and cityscapes are easy to find. This free photo resource will guide you to those places, as well as to the hidden photographic gems in the city that never sleeps.

Alister Benn’s Introduction to Night Photography Ideas

If you have never attempted night photography, this guide will give you the boost of confidence to try it out, as well as giving good ideas and helpful tips on what equipment and settings are useful for this fun type of photography.An

Free photography resources
Photo by jill111

Essential Guide to Learning Flash Portrait Photography

Photography literally means drawing with light. One of the best innovations in modern photography is the advanced integrated automatic flash units. Automation is only part of the story, though. A photographer will get better and more consistent results by understanding flash basics and putting the flash to good use.
Using flash properly will open up a whole new word of portrait photography when you start to transition from beginner to advanced. Let the hints and practical guidance in this guide lead you to better portrait photography.

FREE webinar on Outdoor & Nature Photography by Charlie Borland

We all want to be Ansel Adams, Galen Rowell, or at least come close to their landscape and nature images. National Geographic inspired many of us to get outdoors and record what we saw.
This webinar gives tips and ideas about shooting and post processing nature images. Hard to go wrong listening to good advice.

The real value of these free photo resources will depend on what you, the photographer put into using them. That old song said, “The best things in life are free.” The rest of the song tells a different story, but the best free photo resources can give you a lot to work with. What have you got to lose?