Ty's Half Head

PNGTree, a Free Image Repository for Web Development

PNGTree Title Image

PNGTree is a website that collects free, high quality images for use in various applications, including web development. The majority of the images are at least 800 by 800 pixels and include transparency where applicable.

Having resources like these is great for web developers who don’t typically create their own art, especially those who spend most of their time in the back-end or coding. Google Images is woefully inadequate for finding high quality images and images with transparent backgrounds. Seven or eight years ago it was more powerful – but now it seems as though the majority of images in a Google search are a part of collections on Pinterest, a Google acquisition, and are of low quality and require an account to even view. Pinterest is a great site for inspiration but can not be counted on as an image resource.

Websites like PNGTree fill this gap.

Windows 2000 Phone
Mobile phone with transparent screen (frame png from pngtree.com). I was easily able to add Windows 2000 as the background.

Sign-Up

Signing up for PNGTree is free and straightforward. Simply enter your username, email and password, verify via email, and you’re ready to download an image.

However, the free account only allows a developer to download up to 2 images a day. If you just need a couple of images to pad out an existing design this is fine. But if you’re relying on PNGTree to build an entire site you are going to need to purchase a monthly or lifetime subscription.

Prices

The prices are not too bad for most serious developers. I was given a promotional offer of $139 for a lifetime plan, a deal that they claim is usually $999, though I suspect that this is a call to action and is typically offered around this price when on sale. $999 is way too much for what PNGTree offers here. The images are decent but many also have an outdated mid-2000s clip art vibe.

PNGTree Lifetime Sale Price
Lifetime plan and special offer.

PNGTree also offers a 3 month plan for $49, a 6 month plan for $99, and an annual plan for $139. If you’re building a website and need a specific set of PNGTree images, but don’t expect to use the service in the future, the 3 month plan is a good option and price.

PNGTree Monthly Plans
Monthly subscription offerings.

Final Thoughts

PNGTree is great for developers with little or no Photoshop or Illustrator experience. You may have to dig through some of the less interesting images to find gems, but there are some in here. The transparent image backgrounds are great for placement on the web. PNGTree also has some very nice vector icons. The cost is mostly justifiable in certain situations, but is a little pricey in others.

PNGTree Vector Icons
Transparent vector icons.

One of the important aspects of Nighthouse is that we will create high quality images and designs in-house. Because I have years of experience with Photoshop, Illustrator, and traditional art, and also do the front-end development, I’m able to create art specifically for your webpage. It takes effort to not create a hodgepodge design when a developer is only able to work with image resource sites like PNGTree. Nighthouse can take design and art examples and tailor them to the web experience you want.

Nighthouse VS PNGTree
Nighthouse vs. PNGTree (baboon png from pngtree.com)

But PNGTree is still good for certain scenarios, and I will be exploring other sites similar to it in future blog posts.

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[…] on my last post of illustration resources for web developers, today I bring you a useful webdev tool for creating background-free images: Baseline’s […]