Free Artwork and How to Download It

One of my favourite pieces of art in my home is this giant photo of a Californian shoreline that I move from room to room because I just adore it so much. This is what it looks like: 

It's actually kind of funny how I found this print. During the Spring photoshoot for the Urban Barn lookbook two years ago, there was this pillow that had a very "image-turned-illustration" look to it, and I LOVED it, but I didn't want it in a pillow. Just from looking at it, I could tell that it was put through Illustrator (the program) and somewhere, SOMEHOW there had to be an original picture. So, I set out to find it on the wonderful, wide, web and miraculously, after many different search terms, somehow, I found it. The best part was that I found it on Pexels - which is a free stock image site. I was jazzed that this piece I HAD to have, was absolutely free. 

I think art is 100% worth paying for, so I don't want to seem like I'm advocating for free art only, as there are tons of amazing artists out there who deserve our love and our money. But sometimes you just don't have the budget for that new piece you're drooling over, and that's why I love places like Pexels or Unsplash, as you're allowed to use these images for free (as long as you're not selling them!) and by doing it this way, you're not stealing or cutting into anyone's profits, but you can still decorate your place and add your own personal flair without breaking the bank. 

I knew I wanted it to fit into a very large frame, so I had to figure out how to download it in a size that wouldn't get pixelated. Since I am a graphic designer, this was not difficult for me to check, but I know lots of people are not really sure how all of that resolution stuff works, so I wanted to give a quick guide explaining which custom sizes to download to easily fit your frame. 

Even if you do totally understand resolution, this will simply be a helpful guide for downloading the right size for you! 

To find this specific print, here is the link: 

When you're on this page, you will see a download button. What you want to do is click the arrow on the side of that button, and it will show a dropdown menu where you'll want to select "custom size". Here is an example:

How To Download Free Ocean Print - Pexels - Madison Hope Veitch

This is where you are going to get crafty for sizing. When you're printing something, you want to make sure the resolution is as close to 300 dpi as possible. If this sounds like gibberish to you, please skip down to the handy-dandy chart I've made for sizing. 

For the following sizes, these are the widths and heights you will need to enter. Also, keep in mind that depending on the shape of your frame some of the image may be cropped but your printing store or portal will help you out with that (I think). If your frame isn't listed here, I would choose the closest - and probably the one larger, just to make sure that resolution is really good! 

I've decided to use IKEA size frames, as IKEA seems like the most accessible option and has both the metric and imperial measurements listed.

4 x 6in/10 x 15cm Frame: You can just select the "original size" which is 2038 x 1365

5 x 7in/10 x 15cm Frame: Custom size of 2538 x 1865 

8 x 10in/20 x 25cm Frame: Custom size of 3538 x 2865

12 x 16in/30 x 40cm Frame: Custom size of 5348 x 4218

16 x 20in/40 x 50cm Frame: Custom size of 6548 x 4218

20 x 28in/50 x 70cm Frame: Custom size of 9248 x 7018
*this one takes a jump to keep the proportions in line and show the most of the image.

24 x 36in/ Frame: Custom size of 10,048 x 7653
They don't have an IKEA frame currently on the website for this size, but this is absolutely as far as I would push it. At this size, the resolution is at 228dpi, and for anything printed, you never want to go below 200dpi, but you would like to ideally be closer to 300dpi. So, you could definitely do this, and it might be a bit grainy, but most likely it would look purposeful - any larger and you will just end up with a very large, pixelated image. 

I know some of these numbers seem illogical, but I did test them to make sure they look okay!
Pexels does a great job at keeping the proportions of the images in check - however, sometimes with the sizes to do this, they will crop a side off of the image. I've tried to give you sizes that make sense and show the best of the image (in my opinion). If you're having trouble, please do reach out and I'd be happy to help you fit your custom size! 

Okie dokie, I think that's about all of the info you need to pull of this very inexpensive, but stylish project!

Have you ever done this before? Did you try this exact one? What was your experience with it? I would love to hear from you!