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  2. Carrie Cousins

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.

7 Common Website Design Problems (And How to Explain Them to Clients)

Graphics / 13 Jul 2020

7 Common Website Design Problems (And How to Explain Them to Clients)

Sometimes designers and clients don’t quite speak the same language.

This barrier can be a real problem if a client expresses an issue and you can’t need to explain a solution in a way they understand. Sometimes, you have to step back from your knowledge and break it down in a simplified way.

That’s not always easy. Here, we’re going to look at some common website design problems and how to talk them through with clients that might not understand exactly how websites come together.

10 Tips for Perfect Poster Design

Poster Design / 8 Jul 2020

10 Tips for Perfect Poster Design

Almost everyone has designed a poster or flier at some point. Whether it was for self-promotion or a client, posters can be a fun way to present a message and do some interesting things with design.

Poster design starts with a common canvas. Common poster sizes are 8.5 by 11-inch letter (or A4), 11 by 17 inches and 22 by 34 inches. Large format poster sizes are commonly 24 inches by 36 inches. Posters can be designed vertically or horizontally, but are most commonly designed with a vertical orientation. Today we’re taking a look at ten useful tips for improving your next poster design!

11 Tips to Boost Your Design Profile on Social Media (Without Looking Sleazy)

Instagram Templates / 8 Jul 2020

11 Tips to Boost Your Design Profile on Social Media (Without Looking Sleazy)

Most designers have no problem creating great visuals to share on social media. (That’s almost a no-brainer!) But how can you boost your profile on social media channels without looking sleazy?

There’s a fine line between fun, engaging content, and pushy or overwhelming. There’s a lot of value in showcasing your work online, and you want to do it the right way.

Here, we’re going to look at how to make the most of your design profile on social media. These tips work for personal and business accounts, and they help you walk the path of using social media in a genuine and helpful way.

Design Trend: A New Generation of Image Sliders

Trends / 6 Jul 2020

Design Trend: A New Generation of Image Sliders

Website sliders are one of those design elements that we don’t love but have learned to live with. Generally, they don’t provide a lot of click value, but clients seem to love them.

A new design trend that features a new style of image sliders, fixes some of the functionality (and design boredom) issue of sliders. These aren’t your old-school image scrollers (and you won’t recreate these techniques with plugins).

Here’s a look at different design elements and ways of using this design trend so you can find renewed inspiration next time a slider is part of a project.

Procreate vs. Photoshop: Should You Make the Switch?

Procreate Brushes / 2 Jul 2020

Procreate vs. Photoshop: Should You Make the Switch?

Designers are in love with Procreate. The app built for creative professionals makes designing on an iPad easier and more efficient in a completely new way. But can a $9.99 app be a realistic Photoshop competitor?

For some, the answer is a definite yes.

Here are five reasons Procreate could become your go-to design app (and five reasons why it might not). Plus, an introduction to what Procreate is, and why it might be the perfect app for you.

8+ Web Design Myths Busted: Old Ideas & Modern Best Practices

Trends / 1 Jul 2020

8+ Web Design Myths Busted: Old Ideas & Modern Best Practices

There are a few ideas about website design that seem to never fade away, even though they are not so true anymore. Some concepts haven’t stood the test of time, and it’s time to revisit whether we should be adopting them anymore.

Do people love sliders? Does simplicity = minimal design? Do you really need to include every page of your site in the navigation? There’s quite a bit to unpack!

Here, we’re going to look at a few web design myths and share modern best practices so you don’t fall into any of these old-school traps.

SEO for Designers: A 101 Primer

Business / 29 Jun 2020

SEO for Designers: A 101 Primer

Most designers don’t consider search when it comes to building a website. That’s a mistake. Optimizing for search is just as important as information architecture and should be part of the product design from start to finish.

This is true both for your own knowledge that the project stands the greatest chance of commercial success, and for your client too!

Whether you are starting a new project or redesigning your portfolio, working with search engine optimization in mind from the start is a smart idea.

Here, we’ll look at some of the most basic SEO tips to help you get started on the right path.

The Golden Ratio in Design: Examples & Tips

Layouts / 24 Jun 2020

The Golden Ratio in Design: Examples & Tips

This might feel like a math lesson but hang in there. The golden ratio combines a little bit of math, a little bit of nature, and a lot of practical application for designers. Let’s take a look at what the golden ratio means for design, and a few tips for using it in your design projects.

The golden ratio has been used throughout history to create design elements that have an ideal visual appeal. Because the shape is rooted in nature and mathematics, it’s the perfect combination of balance and harmony. And it’s a superb tool to have up your sleeve as a designer.

Design Trend: Geo Shapes & Patterns (With Animation)

Trends / 24 Jun 2020

Design Trend: Geo Shapes & Patterns (With Animation)

Stylish geometry is a design trend that keeps coming back around. This time the new twist is that shapes and design elements include touches of animation to bring shapes and patterns to life. It’s easier than ever to implement animation on the web, in a simple and widely-supported way.

It’s also a nifty little design technique that can add visual interest to almost anything and works for all types of elements, from logos or icons to backgrounds to hero images.

Let’s take a look at this website design trend in action.

How (And Why) to Design for Local Businesses

Business / 22 Jun 2020

How (And Why) to Design for Local Businesses

Designing for a local business can be one of the most rewarding projects that you take on. When done well, you create a relationship with someone in your community that helps them grown and succeed.

Whether you’re creating a website or designing menus or flyers, working with a small business can stretch your creative muscles but it will make you think about the process a little different. Small businesses can be quite different than some of your bigger clients. They have a lot more on the line when it comes to design services and return on investment, they may have more questions, and they need to know how design can help them grow.

When you take a small business client, your approach to design will likely be a little different. Here’s how to think about it.

15 Procreate Tutorials (For Drawing, Lettering, Sketching + More)

Procreate Brushes / 17 Jun 2020

15 Procreate Tutorials (For Drawing, Lettering, Sketching + More)

Procreate is one of the hottest drawing apps on the market. It’s a robust tool that you can use for fun, personal projects as well as professional and client work on your iPad.

With a tool that has so much functionality, it can be a little overwhelming to think about it all. Working through tutorials can help, so we’ve collected 15 for Procreate to help you get started. These cover off all different levels of knowledge, and help you learn how to draw, letter, sketch and more in Procreate. Grab your iPad, pencil, and dive into some creative work!

And the best part is that every one is free.

Split Screen Web Design: The Trend That Keeps Growing

Trends / 15 Jun 2020

Split Screen Web Design: The Trend That Keeps Growing

Website design with a split-screen aesthetic is a trend that keeps evolving and growing. A split-screen design can be good for a number of reasons, including mobile compatibility and user-friendliness. Plus, many of these designs just look great!

Shifts in the trend show that there are so many different ways to create an effective split screen design that users will love. Consider this your introduction to split-screen design in the new and improved era!