ura – Design for Free & Open Source projects


I’m excited to announce the launch of ura, my newest project to help free & open source projects with their design efforts. I have launched it on the Sunday of 29th May and am still iterating to deliver the best experience possible. So before you ask the important questions, let me go through the project.

The Problem(s)

Free & Open Source projects are usually underfunded (if not complete voluntarily). With that in mind, most projects show a serious lack of well crafted brand identity and user experience in general. I for one am a believer that we cannot have a free society with out Free & Open Source software. But if we perform poorer than our proprietary counterparts, we will not stand a chance against them.Many Free & Open Source projects don’t realize that there is so much more when it comes to the Product, than just the fact that “it works“.

ura’s Approach

So there will be 2 separate activities going on:

  1. Open Source Projects can request design help on a Pay What You Want basis. Projects with the highest bid will be prioritized.
  2. Supporters can pledge monthly to our Patreon page, where they will get special rewards for their pledge. With these funds, we will be able to work on open source projects with no budget. The more you pledge, the more time we will be able to dedicate to these projects. At the end of the day, these are the projects which need design the most.


ura will also facilitate Logobridge, a sub-project which acts as a repository of logos by me released into the Public Domain. Anyone can download them, modify them, and use them in their own projects. Of course, there is the thing that they are free of copyright and trademarks, but they are great if you need to get a project off the ground very quickly. The logos also don’t include any wordmark, so there are enough customization possibilities.

Open Source Design Initiative

I’d hate to reinvent the wheel here, so I want to emphasize that ura will be playing closely with the Open Source Design initiative, a group I’m proud to be part of. We are working right now on the vision of how we see to create synergy in the future, as well. The initiative provides various job offers for open source projects, which we will help tackle on.

Some Background

I officially registered ura in the tax offices of Tirana, Albania in August 2014. Since then I struggled with a business model for it, especially since I didn’t expect there to be a market niche for open source design. Luckily I was wrong. With Mozilla Community Design, SitePoint’s Sourcehunt, Fedora’s Design Team, Open Labs and Open Source Design’s job board, I recognized there was a great need for design in open source. If this works out, I can dedicate my time to help open source projects I support, while still paying my bills and avoiding nasty corporate clients. Check out my Dribbble to see some of my works for open source projects.

How to support

There are various ways how you can support: