5 of the best mock-up generators
September 19 2019
When it comes to digital design, ironically it’s important to show a client how the finished design will look ‘in real life’. Layouts on screens simply don’t speak to us the way that photographs of the finished article do and it’s therefore not surprising that nearly all designer rely heavily on CGI-based mock-up creators to showcase their work. From showing how a site will look on a laptop or mobile, to helping clients to visualise their signage or artwork in situ, mock-ups are an invaluable tool for pitch documents, offering an ‘end result’ visual at an early stage in the creative process.
So if you’re looking for big impact with less hassle, look no further – we’ve compiled a list of the five best mock-up sites on the web for your convenience!
- Mock-Up World (mockupworld.co)
Mock-Up World is one of the few completely free mock-up websites that delivers credible results in a 100% royalty-free format. The site offers a large array of mock-ups for all applications, from the full gamut of Apple devices through to books, posters, billboards and more. There’s also a mock-up generating tool for users who don’t have Photoshop, making this an ideal choice for in-house marketers.
Each photorealistic item is featured together with a preview image or gallery, a detailed description and a link that leads right to the download page. Visitors can use the directory to quickly navigate to the desired category of motive. The mock-ups appear in the form of layered PSD files equipped with smart objects that allow users to quickly drag and drop their own content elements into the image: perfect for showcasing apps, websites, presentations, posters and billboards.
- Smart Mockups (smartmockups.com)
Smart Mockups is an online mock-up generator that doesn’t require Photoshop or even any design knowledge to create compelling, professional-looking mock-ups. There’s a tiered subscription plan that starts from free, which gives you access to a library of 200 free mock-up templates and some basic features, right through to the premium package which is suitable for marketing teams and creative agencies, and includes a library of over 2000 mock-ups, including custom, video and branding templates plus unlimited exports. Smart Mockups is ideal for those with little or no professional design expertise who are looking to create impactful mock-ups quickly or on the go – perfect for small brands to create effective marketing campaigns on a budget or for independent creatives looking for effective ways to stand out from the crowd. There’s also a free one-month trial when you sign up for the first time.
- Anthony Boyd Mock-ups (anthonyboyd.graphics)
Anthony Boyd is an independent mock-up creator who offers a number of free mock-up resources (for personal use) on his website in addition to a third-party hosted online store with yet more high quality mock-ups for sale. Boyd’s screen-based mock-ups for smartphone, tablet and laptop are particularly good quality and very contemporary in style; he also plays around with vintage tech in some of his mock-ups which is an interesting proposition and sure to create a talking point around the boardroom table! Boyd’s site also has a number of premium textures available to download, and his rendering talent is showcased via a link to his YouTube channel where aspiring CGI artists can get an insight into his work. Donations towards free resources are accepted via PayPal.
- PlaceIt (placeit.net)
If you need a comprehensive library of premium quality mock-ups, all in one place, then PlaceIt is where you need to be! Owned by digital assets giant Envato Market, PlaceIt requires a monthly subscription but for your money you’ll get access to the largest library of mock-up templates on the internet while a user-friendly interface makes it easy to create amazing visual assets regardless of your technical and creative prowess. From social media adverts to business cards, from apparel to apps – PlaceIt has it all, and the library is expanding all the time, driven by a commitment to the latest tech and the most creative team. The platform is fully web-based so it’s accessible no matter where you are, and super fast to use.
- Free Design Resources (freedesignresources.net)
As the name suggests, Free Design Resources is a free library of mock-up designs – not designed by the team behind the site, but rather curated from designers all over the world who are willing to offer their work for free, personal use in exchange for credits or backlinks to gain exposure. The site has a comprehensive mock-up library, including everything from outdoor signage to apps to apparel, and also offers a range of custom fonts and templates for social media sites. Each individual download has its own license, and terms and conditions may vary from source to source, so be sure to check before you use.