Showcase of Big Backgrounds in Web Design

Websites using large background images are consistently increasing in popularity. This post is a showcase of more than 30 websites using large background images. As you will see from the websites that are featured here, there are any number of different approaches and possibilities that can be used to create an impact with a background image.

Lanbruk’s Gunyah

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

The Circumference

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Not Your Average Joe

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Montel Media Group

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Hellenic Holidays

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Housing Works

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Gazelle Touch

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Bike Friday

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

JasonDorn.com

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Pillsbury

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Travis & Presley

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

TOOBYDOO

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

eleven3

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Text on Color

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Ace of Base

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

MEDIENRING

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Farmhouse Fare

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Carolina Jesus

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

WallSwaps

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Elite Pre-Vestibular

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Roar

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

August

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

NOFRKS Design Studio

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

BH Eurosong

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Get London Reading

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Longfellow Ranches

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Upstruct

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

ANidea

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Global Ventures

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Le Nordik

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Peter Pearson

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

Creative Spaces

showcase of websites with big backgrounds

For more design inspiration, please see:

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73 Responses

Comments are now closed on this post.

  • choen, April 28, 2009

    nice list…thanks.

  • Janko, April 28, 2009

    Bike Friday is really interesting. Too bad the background is cut, just doesn’t look nice on larger screens.

  • Paul Randall, April 28, 2009

    I think more sites should think about what happens at the edge of the pic.

    Fade/Tile/Repeat…

    All too often this is forgotten, and the image just cuts off – even on screen resolutions of 1680×1050

  • Nathan Beck, April 28, 2009

    Another inspiration selection, thanks!

  • joyoge designers' bookmark, April 28, 2009

    nice inspiration list, thanks..

  • Christopher Ross, April 28, 2009

    Pixel image is stunning, thanks!

  • Kevin, April 28, 2009

    Some really nice backgrounds, nice list!

  • Matthew, April 28, 2009

    Very nice list. I really dig Creative Spaces, and Get London Reading is really original; it feels a bit like I’m looking at a photo rather than a website (in a good way).

    I saw http://www.include-digital.com/ in the list Daniel gave above which is really nice. The background and colors seem to be randomised, so you get some interesting combinations.

  • Mitch, April 28, 2009

    The best for me : ANidea ! I love it !

    Really nice post, and by the way, nice blog !

  • Daniel H, April 28, 2009

    @Paul Randall

    A very large background doesn’t have to stop or fade; it can just resize:

    http://siteinspire.net/showcase/view/top_dollar

  • Yana, April 28, 2009

    I’m so in love with this trend. Good job finding sites I haven’t seen yet (don’t know if it’s just me but it seems like a lot of similar blog posts can be a little repetitive)

  • Samantha Warren, April 28, 2009

    While many of these large backgrounds are done very well, I hate it when they are so busy that they detract from the content rather than add to it. The Housing Works site is a good example of one used effectively, where the background photo is an integrated part of the content rather than just “decoration”.

  • Rob, April 28, 2009

    I have touched on this before and you have a very good collection of web sites with large images set as backgrounds, as a student in web, advertising and multimedia design I will be experimenting with this. Also I think vector mapping is a good thing because you can zoom in a lot and it doesnt turn all pixelated like bitmapping does. Keep up the work as I have put you in my favourites :)

  • k, April 28, 2009

    wow, impressive! :)

  • Tracey Grady, April 28, 2009

    These sites are very striking, and browsing through them makes me want to incorporate a big background on my own site.

    However, I agree with Samantha Warren. When designing, these questions should be asked: is this technique necessary? How does it fit with the purpose of the website? Does it enhance/interact with the site’s content or is it just a pretty background? Some of the sites here do answer these questions well.

  • Vandelay Design, April 29, 2009

    Samantha,
    I agree. The sites on the list were chosen to show some variety and examples, but I agree that having a purpose with a large background is very important. Thanks for the comment.

  • patrick, April 29, 2009

    this is so fresh. large backgrounds have been shown before, but these are great examples of current designs. thanks!

  • Nathan the PHOTO-PAINT Geek, April 29, 2009

    It’s good to have a list such as this but it’s also really important to manage file sizes correctly. While it’s tempting to use a highly detailed images, to do that will slow down the display for users with a slow connection, therefore it’s really important to use good compression techniques. In my book, “The Corel PHOTO-PAINT X4 Insider,” I walk the user through the main compression formats (GIF, JPEG and PNG) and indicate which ones should be used and why.

  • Peter Pearson, April 29, 2009

    Thanks for the feature, much appreciated.

  • aledesign.it, April 30, 2009

    Nice isnpiration..and ther’s some beautiful examples! Good! ;)

  • lksmth, May 1, 2009

    awesome design..

  • Wolverine, May 3, 2009

    Impressive design. Really nice sites.

  • teabag studios, May 4, 2009

    nice list!

    we have one here as well – http://www.sleepmode.uk.com/

  • Site Doublers, May 5, 2009

    Great collection – thanks.

    Please remember the download times for people on slow connections.

  • Jay, May 6, 2009

    Thanks for featuring my site :)

  • Len Ocin, May 10, 2009

    After being a bit worried going with the trends when making designs for new clients that don’t have a clear vision about what design they are after.

    I turned out pleasantly surprised! Most clients just love it!

    Good post (another good one in this line is: http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2009/01/14/web-design-trends-for-2009/ )

  • michelle, May 11, 2009

    Its really looks catchy if we use such kind of backgrounds on web site. Its useful to attract the visitors to spend more time on website and i am also planning to make my web site more catchy with the help of background design. Michelle.

  • webdesignlondon, May 18, 2009

    Its very useful to attract the visitors to spend more time on website. Big backgrounds in web design make an impactful and interesting website design. The right web design london company looks into your needs and objectives and translate into a website that will appeal the intended audience.

  • Haleee, May 27, 2009

    Nice inspiration list thanX VandeLay!!! =)

  • I like the idea of big banner backgrounds on a website… Some of them are so visually interesting that you want to see more and that is the whole point anyway. Great idea and list.

  • Now that’s what I call making use of every pixel available on the screen. Who says big is bad. In fact, intelligently done, it can produce some really dramatic and memorable results. And this list is testimony to that!

  • Enes, June 27, 2009

    very carefully selected showcase. Thank you for another great inspiration post.

  • Lois Reed, July 20, 2009

    I completely think it enhances the website. Although, that may be because I have a 30″ screen.
    Anyway – is there a link to how this is done, particularly the pixel image website. Seems to come in differently.
    thanks.

  • neel, August 14, 2009

    Yes nice list again . i like big background on websites. On my personal website i also have big background.

  • Sam, August 17, 2009

    Great set of websites, I love the Gazelle Touch design. The Ace of Base site brought back some memories too!

  • Pixelvixen, September 7, 2009

    Bike London is a great idea but i think the execution of the site is not up to standard.

  • marinelle Esluzar, September 20, 2009

    this backrounds are so cool and beautiful to see

  • Adnosy, October 21, 2009

    wow, very nice designs !! your the PRO !

  • Chris, October 21, 2009

    This is NOT the best set of inspiration I’ve seen. And I’m CLEARLY NOT moved by them.

    It’s really hard to come across ironic, isn’t it?

  • Lois Reed, October 22, 2009

    Chris, where do you see better? Please share it with us. In a web world increasingly filled with WordPress themes, I am hungry for design inspiration. If you choose to put down this great work, at least give a URL to work that you think superior.
    Thanks.

  • Web Design Manchester, November 9, 2009

    I love these designs. Great post!

  • Vipin, November 19, 2009

    nice list here.. thanks
    my website imicreation has a big background picture also, check that out.

    Thanks for the post. keep more coming..

  • markinyan, December 21, 2009

    Great, beautiful but heavy sites. Not for dial-up, yeah! :)
    Sites-visit-cards. And only. Not content – attraction!

  • Sporttrikots, January 21, 2010

    I think Gazelle Touch is the best. I like Skyline Backgorunds. My second favorit is August.

  • Web Design, February 28, 2010

    Designs are truly fabulous! I agree that big pictures and banners are very appealing nowadays. Thanks!

  • Frank, July 5, 2010

    Some backgrounds are really cool, i like it

  • Egypt web designer, October 12, 2010

    Like it so much
    my favorite one is “NOFRKS Design Studio”

  • 10th Degree, February 24, 2011

    My favorite is “The Gazelle Touch”. It looks dark but mysterious. However, all of these backgrounds are quite stunning. Kudos to the designers.

  • Murad Swaleh, September 20, 2012

    Very Inspiring indeed. Did a clients website http://www.nesmahomes.co.ke using their apartments photo as bg.

  • Mathew Porter, January 10, 2013

    I feel that using large backgrounds on a site can have a great impact especially if the photography is good, some top fashion brands should do this more. On my last ecommerce project I used large images, despite the slight increase in page load times, it has a big impact on the feel of the site and reflects the brand well.

  • Mark Stringer, June 13, 2013

    Great list I have been looking for somthing like this as a resource.

    We completed a website for a client and we mixed the idea of using a big background image and a slider together. Each large image was a case study. The website was responsive too which was tricky. http://www.eartotheground.org .

    We also created a website with a big background image that loaded in a looped video which worked well http://www.sokka.co.uk

    Many thanks again. Great list!