Two weeks ago I received my much awaited Unsplash book. The book is a collection of high quality photos and essays that the guys from the Unsplash website put together. The spirit of the book was to give back to the people that has been contributing to their online community. You must be wondering what I’m talking about…
The Tumblr blog that became huge
Unsplash started as a side project for the guys at Crew, a small Canadian company. They had some extra pics from a project they were working on, and decided to setup a Tumblr with those pictures. The idea was simple, they would upload the pictures (10 to be exact) and anyone would be free to use them as they wanted. It didn’t matter if it was a personal or professional project. They also included a “submit your own photos” button.
They thought it would be nice to post the link on HackerNews and make everyone know about it. After that, things escalated quickly. They had tens of thousands of visits in a couple of days. That was 4 years ago, and since then the site has grown to become an amazing community of photographers. And remember, all their photographs are free to use and high-res.
Why I think it is important
Photography on the Internet is a complicated topic. There are lots of great sites like 500px, Flickr (the old man), Instagram, etc. Thing is, you probably shouldn’t be using the photos from this sites without explicit permission of the author. If you need a picture for a project, you could go to one of those professional photo pages, but let’s be honest, the prices on those websites are insane. So that’s where Unsplash comes and changes the game. A website that represents the spirit of freedom and collaboration of the internet and brings it to photography.
Think of all those freelancers and small companies than can do good use of it. No, even better, check the Made with Unsplash section and see what creative people can do with the right tools and resources.
I’m might not be objective on this (yeah I’m in love with Unsplash since the day I discovered it), but damn, this is amazing. That’s why I had no doubts on supporting their book on Kickstarter. That’s why I will continue to follow their evolution and supporting their new projects. I think we all have to do our part when something as good as this comes out. I can only recommend you to check out the website and see how amazing people and the world are.
BTW, the cover picture is by Kalen Emsley, check his work here