Microsoft offers up some new Open Call Windows 8 themes

Microsoft continues to give Windows 8 PC owners some new, free and pretty impressive themes to download. Some of those themes come from submissions made by artists or photographers to Microsoft's Open Call project. This week, the company launched some new themes based on photos taken by photographers in some beautiful and exotic locations.

The Microsoft Experience blog has links to the new themes, including one from Ian Rushton, who took 17 images of the beaches located on New Zealand’s West Coast. This will apparently be the first of a series of themes from Rushton showcasing the islands of New Zealand.

Other new Windows 8 themes available for download are Winter Garden, from Canadian photographer Hayley Elizabeth, along with a theme showing off coastal Germany from Frank Hojenski. The Sardinian Shores theme, shown above, is based on the work of Italian photographer Giovanni Cultrera.

The other new themes released are Raindrops and Dew, a nature-filled series of images from Macedonian photographer, Slavco Stojanoski, and the Butterflies of Nagpur theme from India-based Mayur Kotlikar. Finally, Imran Mirza created a Windows 8 theme that shows some of the most iconic architectural landmarks of the city of London, shown above.

Source: Microsoft | Images via Microsoft

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So much yes !
This has been a major criticism of mine for many versions of windows, this could have been done long ago. I hate the idea that i have to hack system files to use some themes. And for Microsoft to ignore the desire the public has on this issue is just more proof they couldn't care less what the public thinks. They will tell you what to like and HOW period. And how hard could it be to open up the skinning engine to the public ? Almost every other piece of software on the net has this functionality yet Microsoft seems incapable or I should say unwilling to do so.
This comment I'm making is not Windows 8 bashing its the ongoing decision making of Microsoft that bugs me and Windows 8 is apart of a long run of bad decisions. (with plenty more to come obviously)

I don't agree with the haters but I can understand what their issue is (even though they're making it way bigger then it is). Personally I love the modern UI and these themes don't work in the modern UI. As a lockscreen I have the bing daily wallpapers which are also beautiful. In the UI itself I use the mondern background which are also nice but limited. I think Microsoft should add more 'themes' to the modern UI as well.

Agreed. The meaning of theme becomes obvious if you look around rather than playing dumb and making excuses for Windows 8. Look at DeviantArt for example for some Windows 7 themes and then come and tell me how many of them are basically wallpapers with a windows color setting. Defending crap like this is playing games and making excuses. Blurring the definition of the term to suit an agenda nothing more.