Free CSA Images on French Paper is the most recent in a long line of innovations that have sprung from the collaboration of Jerry French and Charles S. Anderson, one of the lengthiest and most productive client/designer relationships in graphic design history.
Over the years, French's outstanding papers have become synonymous with stand-out design, so it's hard to believe that for the first 114 years of their existence, the closest they got to design was the local printer who produced their swatch books.
That all changed in the fall of 1985, when a young Charles S. Anderson's search for a gritty, recycled newsprint-type paper in an overused sea of slick coated sheets led him to recycled French Speckletone. Little did he know he had not only found the perfect paper, but the perfect client as well.
10,000 Anderson-designed Speckletone promotions later (sent to designers and art directors), this unglossy, uncoated paper went from French's worst to their best selling line in just six month's time. And The French Paper Company has been a true believer in the power of design ever since.
Anderson and his design firm began working with French to develop new paper products and promotions, often incorporating illustrations from his own personal collection of vernacular line art images, (which he had been painstakingly creating and compiling since 1974).
The next 2 and 1/2 decades saw French Paper grow to become the go-to mill for uniquely distinctive paper while maintaining their independence in an era of corporate consolidation,
making them one of the last small family-owned mills in North America, now in their 6th generation.
Over the same period, and with the help of hundreds of talented designers, illustrators and photographers, the private image collection of C.S. Anderson grew and was organized into CSA Images. Obsessively curated and continuously updated, it has become one of the most award-winning, original and extensive stock illustration archives ever created, with pieces in the permanent collections of The Museum of Modern Art, and the Smithsonian Institution's Cooper-Hewitt National Design Museum.
CSA Images are usually only available for purchase, but since French Paper's support helped build the Archive it seemed only right to give French Paper customers access to the most amazing black and white images on earth for free--French's way of giving back to the loyal creative community that has supported them through the years.
Inspired by the history of design, illustration, typography, and pop culture from the late 19th Century to modern times and paralleling French Paper's existence from 1871 to today, Free CSA Images capture the authenticity and detail of hand-drawn line art and the beautifully tactile look of ink printed on paper.
Perfect for designers, art directors, silkscreen, letterpress and offset printers, scrapbookers, crafters, and hobbyists alike, these CSA Images can be used for free when printed on any French Paper, whether purchased through the French Paper website or through your local French Paper merchant.
By making available tens of thousands of these incredible illustrations, icons, borders and more, French becomes the first mill to offer not just paper, but the images to print on it. Taking French into the digital realm and positioning them as the world's best free digital design resource.