Category: Inspiration

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Building a Constructive 404 Error Page (With Examples)
Inspiration / 15 Mar 2011

Building a Constructive 404 Error Page (With Examples)

The error page is a common facet in web design often overlooked by the mainstream crowd. Generally when a user finds themselves on an error page it constitutes as a failure on their part. Something about their actions have caused an error on the site, and all hope seems lost.

As generations are advancing we’re seeing the youth of today much more applicable to deal with technological errors and trace the routes to one source issue. When dealing with the majority it’s important to understand user experience is everything. This goes double for new-age web applications and distracting mobile games. While constructing these pages always keep the end user in mind – and remember there’s a vast difference from person to person!

Tackling Online Menus: Tips and Examples
Inspiration / 3 Mar 2011

Tackling Online Menus: Tips and Examples

Restaurant websites are quite frequently disasters of both design and usability. Even good designers can go very wrong on this particularly tricky task.

Before you attempt your next restaurant website design, check out this article. We’ll go over some super practical tips for success in addition to a few pitfalls to avoid.

Weekly Freebies: 30 Beautiful Bokeh Textures
Inspiration / 15 Feb 2011

Weekly Freebies: 30 Beautiful Bokeh Textures

On a technical level, the term “bokeh” refers to the aesthetic quality of the blur in a photograph. Photos and even lenses are often judged by this factor and points of light in the distance are one of the most commonly seen tests and experiments in this area.

The images that result from these experimentations are quite beautiful and have really captured the attention of designers in recent years. Today we’ve rounded up thirty of our favorite free bokeh textures for you to use in your designs. Enjoy!

10 Website Background Ideas for Your Next Project
Inspiration / 21 Jan 2011

10 Website Background Ideas for Your Next Project

One of the most frequently asked questions we receive is a variant of what kind of background someone should use for their site. These designers have the basic content and the layout pretty much nailed down, but the background is either too boring or too busy and they don’t know how to fix it.

Today we’re going to take a look at a few live sites to grab some inspiration on how to effectively add interesting backgrounds to a web page. Bookmark this article and come back to it the next time you’re stuck on a background decision.

Trends for Creating Extravagant Website Templates
Inspiration / 8 Dec 2010

Trends for Creating Extravagant Website Templates

Website template designs are very popular among modern web developers. Working within a template design can save boatloads of time when under the deadline crunch. Not only this but most source code is created within HTML5/CSS standards and allows for simple customizations.

There are a few techniques which can be utilized to develop the best templates. Designers and developers alike frequently create templates and offer them for free download to the community. Color theory, grid design, layout structure, and content development all play key roles in the creation process. Check out some of the tips below and see how you could integrate these ideas into your work.

60+ Awesome UI Dribbbles
Inspiration / 28 Oct 2010

60+ Awesome UI Dribbbles

It’s been quite a while since we’ve done a “Shots of the Week” post so we thought we’d make up for it by bringing you a massive collection of user interface designs from Dribbble.

Use these shots as inspiration for color, textures, layouts and anything else you spot for your next application or website. Looking through such a great collection of inspiration can serve as a springboard for your own completely original work.

Designing in the Dark: 10 Dark Sites and Their Color Schemes
Inspiration / 13 Aug 2010

Designing in the Dark: 10 Dark Sites and Their Color Schemes

What goes well with a black website? Today we’ll find out but taking a look at some excellent examples of dark web design along with their primary color palettes.

Each website will have a screenshot along with a brief description, a visual representation of the color scheme, and a link to download the Photoshop color swatches from Pictaculous.

Dribbble Shots of the Week #2
Inspiration / 11 Aug 2010

Dribbble Shots of the Week #2

Because we have come to love bite-sized inspiration, each week we feature ten Dribbble shots that we found to be particularly excellent.

We have no real guidelines for who makes it and who doesn’t, just pure off the cuff judgement based on aesthetic quality. We’ll also pick a VIP that represents our top pick of the week.

25 Brilliant Uses of Colorful Spectrums in Web Design
Inspiration / 5 Aug 2010

25 Brilliant Uses of Colorful Spectrums in Web Design

I’ve noticed a recent trend in web design that involves the use of colorful spectrums as a main design element. The uses are widely varied but almost always quite beautiful.

Today we’ll learn how to build amazing spectrum-based artwork in Photoshop and then take a look at 25 brilliant examples of spectrums being used in real websites.

Dribbble Shots of the Week #1
Inspiration / 1 Aug 2010

Dribbble Shots of the Week #1

I’ve definitely become quite sucked into the strange exclusive designer club that is Dribbble.com. Too often “design inspiration” implies ripping off the entire concept of someone else’s work. With Dribbble it’s really easy to find tiny bits of inspirational art that will spark a design idea where the final result is completely different than the work of the artist who provided the inspiration.

I’ve been so inspired by this bite-sized digital art museum that I decided to start a new series where I will hand pick 10 Dribbble “shots” to share with you. To make the selections, I’ll use no other criteria aside from my own off-the-cuff judgement. As a bonus, I’ll pick a “VIP” each week that showcases my favorite shot and what I liked about it.

So here we go! Please enjoy this week’s top ten shots.

30+ Innovative Icon-Based Navigation Menus
CSS / 15 Jul 2010

30+ Innovative Icon-Based Navigation Menus

Here at Design Shack we love a good navigation menu. Lately we’ve noticed a trend arising around menus that use icons either exclusively in place of text or as a support of additional textual information.

Adding icons to your navigation can not only give you an aesthetic boost but actually make for a quicker visual read of the link. Here’s a collection of over thirty icon-based navigation menus that we found online. We’ll conclude with a few resources you can use to snag some free icons to create your own fancy menus.

Why Money Shouldn’t Motivate Design
Business / 9 Jul 2010

Why Money Shouldn’t Motivate Design

Today we’re going to discuss the difference between designing for money and designing for a living because it’s what you love to do.

We’ll take a look at a few things that motivate designers who couldn’t be anything else if they tried and why design is more than a means to a financial end but is in fact a way of life.

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