Make Your Own Open Content: Free Software

True, you can make open content on any software. As long as you, the creator, license one of your creations under an open content license, it is open content. But, maybe you want to create pictures, music, and video to share but don’t have a ton of money to drop on art, audio, and word processing software. No problem! There are tons of free programs out there, and here’s a list of the best of the best!  Have fun creating!

Text on Pillar


Open Office

Tired of bowing to software overlords? Open Office is a great productivity suite that offers the same functionality as the big guys, with none of the price. Word processing, spreadsheets, and slideshows, oh my!


This program has “scrappy” written all over it. Weighing in at just 8mb, it still packs a powerful word processing punch, but lacks the other features found in open office.




A versatile art program that allows you to create vectors, brush drawings, tex-to-path, and more!

Google Sketchup

Where is my mindGoogle’s 3D modeling program.

Sketch Paint

Can’t be bothered to download a program? Draw right in your browser!


A program specializing in vector graphic editing and creation.


Photo and image editor galore.



A free, open source, cross-platform sound editor.

29-07-10 You Be The Writer And Decide The Words I Say

MP3 Merger

Combine MP3 files into longer audio tracks.


A cost free alternative to Sibelius and Finale, Musescore is music composition and notation software.



To start, check out Vimeo’s Video School and Our Media’s Learning Center for free lessons on making great videos.


Great for beginners, it allows you to filter, cut, and encode, and works with a wide range of video types.


Great for adding effects to create your own full-fledged movies.


A video editing and special effects program for free download. It can work in 2D and 3D and functions as both a stand alone program and a plugin for other professional video software.


A bit more technical, Zwei-Stein offers a variety of effects that provide powerful video editing capabilities, if you can mange the interface.

See the rest of our Free Media Guide for more info on how to license, find, and make the best open content!

Creative Commons Love: Hkuchera, CowGummy, ahhyeah and  Bethan on

Written by Michael Jones
Michael JonesMake Your Own Open Content: Free Software