Sometimes we get all swept up in the process of design and we forget exactly what font we used, where we found those Photoshop brushes, what site Google Images found that picture, etc. It may not seem like a big deal, but it’s actually important to credit other people’s work, especially when their work has made yours possible. Not only does it create good feeling among the creative crowds who make the stuff you use, but it also raises awareness about their work and may draw more interest their way! In webdesign, we’re all helping each other with links, after all!
So, here’s a handy little guide to crediting your design sources (and adding credits where none were before):
Properly Crediting Design Sources to Begin With
- As you find brushes, fonts, graphics, photos, etc., copy-paste the URLs of each site where you found them. Also note the creator’s name, if provided, and their personal work’s website (if different from the source link).
- Place your credits either at the bottom of each page of your site, or on a separate page (this option works great for longer lists of credits).
- Your list doesn’t have to be super-organized or stiffly written. A simple, casual format like this could work: “I used brushes made by This Girl (WebsiteA.com), found the image by This Girl over at WebsiteB.com, and used This Cool Font, made by This Guy (WebsiteC.com).” (Just make sure you include the links somewhere in that text!)
Fixing or Adding Credits
- Check through your files to see if you saved the Readme documents for your downloaded font or brush. Most creators will include at least a little something that can help you credit your source correctly.
- If you don’t remember where you got your brush or image, try doing as specific a Google search as you can for it, and comb through all the sites you usually visit for visual design resources. It may be time-consuming, but it’ll be worth it!
- If you just can’t remember or decipher what font you used on a design (been there done that), give the WhatTheFont tool a try. Though the process is a little more involved, it’s always been accurate whenever I’ve used it!
- If all else fails and you are clueless as to where one of your design elements came from, put a line in your credits like this: “Apologies, but I have no idea where I downloaded this font/brush/image; if this is your work, please contact me and I will gladly put up your link.” Be honest, and you might just make a new design friend!