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Carrie Cousins

Carrie Cousins

Carrie is the chief writer at Design Shack, with years of experience in web and graphic design. Sports fanatic. Information junkie. Designer. True-believer in karma.

Icon Design in 2021: The Key Trends

Trends / 17 Dec 2020

Icon Design in 2021: The Key Trends

Icons might be one of the most important – and underrated – examples of design in your portfolio. Here’s a look at icon design with some inspiring examples.

Icon elements are shown almost everywhere, but sometimes get produced as an afterthought. That shouldn’t be the case. Great icon design can be distinctive and add finesse and flair to a project.

Let’s take a look at what’s new, and what’s hot in icon design in 2021!

Get Online Fast With the Duda Website Builder

Reviews / 15 Dec 2020

Get Online Fast With the Duda Website Builder

Get ready to create a website in half the time it takes to build a WordPress site. Seriously! The Duda website builder is a professional-level tool that can help you get online fast, with all the performance and search engine optimization capability you need.

Here’s a look at Duda and everything the web design platform offers, including the key features, pricing, and more.

Design Trend: Imagery Without People

Trends / 14 Dec 2020

Design Trend: Imagery Without People

Where did all the people go? In the same way streets are a little less crowded, so are design projects. It’s a design trend that’s rooted in practicality – what kind of imagery is appropriate in the world we live in now?

With so many rules and changing norms, the easy answer can be to eliminate images that focus on people and faces altogether. And while it is a little different than what we might be used to, it’s not a bad solution to a current design problem. It’s also something you can probably deploy with existing image assets if you need to retool a current design.

Projects that feature imagery without people can have other practical applications as well that aren’t pandemic-related. Let’s take a look.

The 10 Best Photoshop Alternatives for Mac (2021)

Software / 10 Dec 2020

The 10 Best Photoshop Alternatives for Mac (2021)

You don’t have to use Adobe Photoshop on your Mac to edit images like a pro. There are plenty of Photoshop alternatives for Mac that you can download or use in-browser to create just the right images and graphics for your projects. And some of them are completely free!

None of these are necessarily one-size-fits-all solutions. Each tool tends to serve a specific purpose; Do you want to edit online or on a desktop? Are you editing photos or multiple file types? Is all the work for web or will images get printed?

Here’s a list of the best Photoshop alternatives for Mac in 2021, but not in any particular order. Have a read through to find the one that’s right for you.

When (And How) to Outsource Design Work to Someone Else

Business / 10 Dec 2020

When (And How) to Outsource Design Work to Someone Else

If it has ever crossed your mind that a certain element of a design project would be better if you had help, then outsourcing work could be a viable option.

Design agencies, small shops, and freelancers can all benefit from having a bench of partners that can help with projects. Successful outsourcing is based on a mutual relationship between parties that have a similar design style and work ethic.

This guide will take you through everything you need to know about outsourcing graphic design work.

15+ Most Helpful Affinity Designer Tutorials (+ Reviews) in 2021

Affinity Designer Templates / 8 Dec 2020

15+ Most Helpful Affinity Designer Tutorials (+ Reviews) in 2021

Affinity Designer is a vector or raster app. It’s a competitor to Adobe’s Illustrator and allows you to design various elements for print or digital publication.

It’s part of the Affinity package of design tools made by Serif. Use it to do anything from making a business card to mock up an app. Affinity Designer is made for Mac iOS, Windows, and the iPad.

Here, we’ve collected some of the best for everyone from beginners to more seasoned pros, a mix of video and written tutorials. It’s a great place to start for upskilling with your first steps in Affinity Designer!

Showcase Your Creativity With a Free .Design Domain Name

Reviews / 8 Dec 2020

Showcase Your Creativity With a Free .Design Domain Name

Highlight your skills and improve your branding with the right domain name. The right .design domain is waiting for you.

Some of the biggest names in design, including Adobe, Spotify, and Airbnb already use a .design domain for creative projects.

Now is the time to grab one for your business while you can get the first year free.

11 Tips for Creating a Usable Website Contact Page

UX Design / 3 Dec 2020

11 Tips for Creating a Usable Website Contact Page

Peek at the analytics. Chances are that your contact page is among the most visited on our website.

It’s for good reason. Visitors will seek out a contact page to get additional information about your company or business, find your location, or get in touch.

Now the bad news. This is an often-neglected part of the website design. Too many websites don’t take care of the contact page, resulting in missed opportunities and conversions.

You can remedy that right now with these tips for creating a usable contact page.

8 Tips to Nail Your Design Presentation

PowerPoint Templates / 30 Nov 2020

8 Tips to Nail Your Design Presentation

Presenting your design to a client is often a chance to make a key first impression. It can set the tone for how the project will be received. A spot-on design presentation can help you set the stage for success.

There’s a lot that can go into a design presentation – the work itself, slides or a presentation, how you talk about and define the work, and even your skills as a presenter.

Here, we’ve got plenty of tips (and even a few tricks) to help you nail every design presentation every time.

6 Reasons Why Cloudways Is a Great Managed Hosting Choice

Reviews / 27 Nov 2020

6 Reasons Why Cloudways Is a Great Managed Hosting Choice

Finding the right web host can be a little overwhelming – there are several great choices with features that are essential to streamlining business operations.

In this article, I am going to introduce Cloudways, a great managed hosting solution with top performance, reliability, and excellent support.

From in-built CDNs, to free SSL certificates, and the ability to choose the platform on which your account is hosted. There’s plenty of flexibility, and a lot to like about this hosting service.

The 8 Best Photoshop Alternatives for Windows (2021)

Software / 24 Nov 2020

The 8 Best Photoshop Alternatives for Windows (2021)

Looking for a faster and better alternative to Adobe Photoshop? While Photoshop has been a standard for years, that’s starting to change with plenty of new tools for Windows that make easy work of photo editing. Many of these new tools include smart functions that will speed up workflows.

The best Photoshop alternatives pack in just the features you need without a lot of fluff you won’t use. Here’s a list of the best Photoshop alternatives for Windows in 2021.

Take note of special features to find the one that’s right for you.

Best Data Recovery Software for 2021: 7 Top Picks

Reviews / 24 Nov 2020

Best Data Recovery Software for 2021: 7 Top Picks

It’s inevitable: At some point you will lose a project due to a crash, virus, or by accident.

But you can be ready to recover information and data quickly with the right data recovery software. There are a plethora of tools on the market – some paid, some free – that can help you bet lost files back.

Here, we’re going to look at 7 of the best options so you have one of these tools at the ready when you need it. Perfect for designers, developers, or anyone who wants to have a magic tool up their sleeve when the worst happens!

Before we go ahead and look at the best data recovery software, here’s a staggering stat shared by Remo Software, one of the leading data recovery software companies: 0.93% of hard drives failed in 2020. That’s a serious number of data loss scenarios. We recommend you take necessary precautions while working from home on your devices and always choose a good piece of data recovery software.