Articles Archive

tell-story

How to Tell a Story With Design

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Design is a method of expression. It communicates a visual message to those who see it. It also communicates a story, whether implied or clearly stated.

As a designer, it is your job to make sure that story is clear. The design story should fall in line with the story of the company, brand, website, game, bottled drink or whatever you are working with. Telling a story is important to create a lasting impression and make your “thing” more memorable than all the others out there.

July 30th, 2014 Posted in Inspiration
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Freelancing 101: How to Battle Obstacles to Success

freelancing 101

It took a while for me to get started, really started, as a freelancer. And I won’t lie; it was not always easy. There are so many obstacles on the path to becoming a freelancer. Whether you are writing, designing or taking photos, the key is not to let doubt sink in. If you want to be successful you have to put your mind to it.

Today, we’re going to look at some of the obstacles freelancers often face in their working life, along with various tips and suggestions for overcoming each one.

July 28th, 2014 Posted in Business
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This Week in Design: July 25, 2014

week in design

The word this week in design is “new.” From a new survey about new and young designers to a new typography experiment and a new “smellable” magazine cover, the hope is that you learn something new this week. And don’t forget to share your new items and news with us. We love hearing from readers and take your suggestions into consideration; so don’t be shy.

Every week, we plan to a look at major product releases and upgrades, tools and tricks and even some of the most popular things you are talking about on social media. And we’d love to hear what’s going on in your world as well. Have we missed anything? Drop me a line at carrie@designshack.net.

July 25th, 2014 Posted in This Week in Design
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Design Dilemma: Using a Humorous Client Sales Pitch

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“How do I find clients?” is the question I get the most from beginners, as well as experienced professionals (finding work is tough these days and getting harder for freelancers).

There are certainly steps one can take but, having received this message addressed to me via the Design Dilemma email account, I had to read it to see if there was a question attached. There wasn’t, but “Bob’s” plea presented an interesting conundrum — by being “humorous” did “Bob” show his human side in hopes that someone would want to work with him or should he have made a serious sales pitch, spotlighting his past work and abilities? Let’s take a closer look.

July 23rd, 2014 Posted in Design Dilemma
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10 Ways to Make Photos Work in Your Designs

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Browsing through collections of websites, such as those from Awwwards or The Best Design, you often notice a common theme – great photography. A great image can make your website (or any design project for that matter) look amazing.

But what if your images are less than stellar or you have a limited number of images to work with? You can still create something with a lot of visual impact. With editing, creative use and a few design “tricks,” you can create something special with as little as a single image. Here are 10 techniques to try.

July 21st, 2014 Posted in Graphics, Inspiration
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This Week in Design: July 18, 2014

week in design

Well … duh! (Insert eye roll here.) That might be a bit of an exaggeration when you hear things like “user experience is integral to design” or “testing is important.” But sometimes we need the reminder. That’s what this week in design is about – refreshing our collective design brains about things we should be doing and thinking about, that have maybe been forgotten.

Every week, we plan to a look at major product releases and upgrades, tools and tricks and even some of the most popular things you are talking about on social media. And we’d love to hear what’s going on in your world as well. Have we missed anything? Drop me a line at carrie@designshack.net.

July 18th, 2014 Posted in This Week in Design
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Design Dilemma: The Changing Mind of a Client

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Most people second guess everything they do. When it comes to design, clients usually don’t understand the process. Without guidelines of how you work on a project, you can bet they’ll have their own ideas on what you will do because they are paying you.

It’s an easy fix, but it has to be done from the moment you say “hello!” to the client. Laying down rules after the project has commenced will be met with surprize and misunderstandings between you and your client, so, join us as we delve into another shocking Design Dilemma, helping to answer your questions, queries and concerns about the murky world of design.

July 16th, 2014 Posted in Design Dilemma
world-cup

10 Things the World Cup Taught Me About Design

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For the last month, most of the world has been enthralled by the World Cup, which concluded Sunday in Brazil. (Germany won the title, 1-0, if you missed it.) The world’s largest sporting event made me think about the lessons football (or soccer for those of us in the USA) can teach us about design.

Sport is a lot like design. It’s competitive. It’s timed with deadlines. It leaves a lasting impression. The similarities are quite fantastic and here are 10 lessons I learned while watching the World Cup this month. (As a bonus, you’ll find World Cup design goodies featured with this article.)

July 14th, 2014 Posted in Inspiration
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This Week in Design: July 11, 2014

week in design

One of my favorite design gurus relaunched his site this week and it’s got me thinking about good design practices. This week, we’ll look at that site “reboot” and other things that make good design.

Every week, we plan to a look at major product releases and upgrades, tools and tricks and even some of the most popular things you are talking about on social media. And we’d love to hear what’s going on in your world as well. Have we missed anything? Drop me a line at carrie@designshack.net.

July 11th, 2014 Posted in This Week in Design
emotion

How to Create an Emotional Connection With Design

emotions

Every project you complete connects with users in some way. The design communicates a message and a tone. The emotional tone is what we are going to take a deeper look at and try to better understand.

Emotional connections fall into four basic category pairs – joy and sadness, trust and disgust, fear and anger, and surprise and anticipation. Understanding this range of emotion and how it relates to a visual message is important so that your design projects are received as they are intended. As you read through this post, take a look at the featured websites and think about how each one makes you feel and what parts of the visual aesthetic contributes to that emotion.

July 9th, 2014 Posted in Graphics
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