Inspiration Archive

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15 Great Gadgets and Gifts for Designers: 2012

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It’s that time of year again. The weather is cooling down, everything from candles to coffee smells like pumpkin, and the holidays are right around the corner. Before you know it, you’ll be standing in a shopping mall with absolutely no idea what to purchase for the lovable but oh so nerdy designers on your list. Hint: they don’t want another “fancy” pen set from Staples.

Fear not, my fellow geeks have elected me to inform you of all the things that they’d love to see under the tree this year. Just like last year, I’ve put together a list of fifteen awesome gifts for designers. Take a look and start crossing off some names.

October 22nd, 2012 Posted in Inspiration
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The New Arby’s Logo: Better or Boring?

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Everyone’s favorite roast beef sandwich fast food chain (ok, maybe the only roast beef fast food chain anyone can name) just jumped headlong into a brand refresh. Their new logo, menu and website is meant to bring the admittedly old-timey restaurant into the 21st century.

The question of course is, did they succeed? Follow along as we take a look at the logo and website to see what we think.

October 15th, 2012 Posted in Inspiration
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Design a Vintage Typographic Wedding Invitation

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Today we’re going to take a step back from the web to embark on a good old fashioned print design project. Wedding invitations have become a major target for home-grown design experiments so we’re going to dive into one and see what we can come up with.

We’ll use a major typography focus combined with some simple icons to give the finished product a sophisticated vintage appeal. We’ll also do the whole thing using just two spot colors.

September 27th, 2012 Posted in Inspiration
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30 Great Looking Web Designs Built With Diagonal Lines

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Too often, we fall back on the same old design techniques and aesthetic feel. Why not mix it up every now and then and try something new? One technique that really seems to be gaining traction lately is the implementation of strong diagonal lines in web design.

After years of strict, standard grids that utilize clear vertical and horizontal directionality, a bold diagonal design can make a refreshing statement that’s eye-catching and attractive. Read on to see thirty recent examples of designers using diagonal lines in their work.

September 24th, 2012 Posted in Inspiration
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53 Outstanding Works of Art Made With Paper by FiftyThree

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Paper by FiftyThree has become the reason that I reach for my iPad lately. It’s simply an amazing outlet for creativity that strikes an unrivaled balance between artistic freedom and simplicity. If you haven’t gotten your hands on it yet, you’re missing out.

Designers, painters and even wannabe artists like myself are flocking to Paper and churning out truly outstanding works of art. Today we’re going to take a look at fifty-three of the best Paper sketches and paintings that I’ve seen.

September 12th, 2012 Posted in Inspiration
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Art vs. Design: Are They the Same Thing?

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Every project is created by design. It is thought out, analyzed and finally, designed and executed.

But is every design project also a work of art? How similar (or different) are the processes and results? You may find that every designer or artist has a different definition. Here I will share my characteristics of each. (Feel free to agree with or even challenge me.)

August 29th, 2012 Posted in Articles, Inspiration
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25+ Awesome Responsive Blog Designs

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One of the very first steps that you should take in any major redesign is to get a feel for the state of the industry by taking a look around at what others are doing. When used properly, good inspiration drives you to your own unique ideas.

This is especially helpful when embarking on your first responsive design project. Today we’re going to hone in specifically on blogs and take a look at how some of the early adopters in responsive blog design have approached the challenge. If you’re thinking about taking your blog responsive, you won’t want to miss these 25 sites!

August 27th, 2012 Posted in Inspiration
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10 Free Color Palettes From 10 Famous Paintings

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If you want to learn a thing or two about color, why not look to the true masters whose artistic work has stood the test of time? Great painters almost always possess a keen understanding of color that is truly impressive when you stop to appreciate it.

Follow along as we pull color palettes from ten of my favorite artists and paintings and learn a thing or two about art history in the process. You’ll be able to download each palette as an Adobe Swatch Exchange file that you can pop right into Photoshop.

August 20th, 2012 Posted in Inspiration
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Intentional or Not: Mathematical Theory in Design

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Some of the principles may be hundreds of years old, but they are still powering good design today. Time-tested mathematical theories have long-shaped our collective definition of what looks good.

You may plan to use some mathematical theories as part of your design project from the early stages, others can be unintended. Either way, mathematical rules still apply to almost every project, from print to web design. It is important to understand the role of math in design and account for how it can affect the look and feel of your projects.

July 18th, 2012 Posted in Articles, Inspiration, Layouts
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25 Amazingly Bizarre Minor League Baseball Logos

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Being familiar with my love of logos and tendency to point out crazy design, a friend of mine recently showed me a fascinatingly bizarre niche of design of which I had, up to now, been entirely ignorant: Minor League baseball team logos.

When I tell you to prepare yourself for some of the zaniest examples of professional logo design that you’ve ever seen, I’m using neither exaggeration nor hyperbole. Buckle your seat belts, you’re in for quite a ride.

July 16th, 2012 Posted in Inspiration
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