There’s a chill in the air – and not just because I left the kitchen window open.

It’s Hallowe’en season! All Hallows’ Eve! Samhain! Commercialized creepiness! Whatever you call it, October is the only month of the year you’re free to revel in the revolting, marvel at the macabre, and embrace the eerie without judgmental folks deeming you a bit weird.

So here’s my (trick or) treat for you: a wicked collection of Halloween wallpapers with which to bewitch your Ubuntu setup (or non-Ubuntu setup; you can use these images anywhere, they don’t bite – I think).

Where’d I dig these atmospheric images up from?, a creative crypt of high-quality imagery that is (mostly) free to download, use, and in some cases, redistribute.

Should you like an image below do download it from Unsplash. Don’t use the screenshots that are embedded (unless you seeking horrific quality, of course). Each image is linked so you can download an original, high-resolution copy by clicking on it.

HD Halloween Wallpapers

Jack’o-lanterns are a spine-chilling staple of this season, as the hordes of art featuring them attests. This particular pumpkin image from Lucia Foster possessed my attention due to the sinister face staring out of a dark abyss and directly into my soul…

“jack o lantern with light”

Isolated places in the dark, in winter, and in fog? Definitely evokes an unsettling and uneasy feeling in me. I can’t look at this particular image for long. It screams “Turn and run and don’t look back” — a chilling warning that’s impossible to ignore…

“house in the woods”

Spiders and cobwebs are to Halloween what bells and mistletoe are to Christmas. This silhouette stood out to me because of its colours: they remind of the hues present in the default Ubuntu wallpapers from 2011-ish, making it an apt (heh) fit for denizens of the distro:

“silhouette photography of spider”

Skulls are the ultimate symbol of death. In a clinical setting they’re a potent reminder of our own transience but here, disturbed in the dirt, a skull is more like a portent of something terrifying being (re)discovered…

“a skull laying on the ground in the dark”

Classic chiller imagery here. An indistinct shape pressed against foggy glass. You don’t need to see this shape moving for it feel unnerving. Even static there’s an unsettling sense of the unknown; an ambiguity that our minds will inevitably fill with all kinds of terror…

“person behind fog glass”

Crows feature prominently in folklore, superstitions, and the supernatural. Their dark and mysterious appearance, along with their fondness for sitting in spooky settings, mean they’re an integral part of the Halloween season. Pumpkins, skulls, crows…


This blood-red hellscape of a picture features a stack of skulls, some still screaming in sheer terror. What’s awful fate befell them? Freaked if I know – but there’s sure to be some serious spectral unrest associated with these poor soul’s souls…

Is this the hand of someone in the midst of drowning, or the hand of someone previously drowned emerging from the depths to seek revenge…? I’d rather not think about it!


To finish, I figured I’d offer something more colourful. Y’know, for those not wholly willing to embrace the dark side. And what better than a pair of chatty skeletons having a catchup about their post-temporal escapades!

“Chatty skeletons”

— I like to think they’re listening to this banger from Driveways (a band, not the thing outside the front of your house):

Spooky Vibes for the Ubuntu

Which Linux distro do ghosts use? U-boo-ntu ?

You’ve just seen an haunting array of Halloween-themed wallpapers that bring spooky vibes to the Ubuntu desktop. From indistinct entities to sinister skulls, these chilling backdrops will get you in to the Hallowe’en spirit if the spooks don’t first!

Do you have a favourite? Is there a specific image you unearth every October to get your frightful fix from? Let me know below!

I’ll be exorcising the comments section of any “I don’t see the point of desktop wallpapers as I never see my desktop at all!!” type comments. If you don’t like, want, or use desktop wallpapers, don’t read articles about them 😉

Eye Candy