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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.

Freelancing 101: Tips for Working From Home

Business / 9 Jun 2014

Freelancing 101: Tips for Working From Home

Working from home can be one of the greatest perks of doing freelance work. It can also lead to the most distractions and enable procrastination. (How many times have you taken the dog for a walk when a project deadline looms?)

You can create a more conducive home workspace that actually encourages you to get things done. Working from home can be an easy, and enjoyable, part of your freelance life if you set yourself up to be productive, happy and avoid home place distractions. Here are 10 ways you can help yourself when it comes to working from home.

This Week in Design: June 6, 2014

This Week in Design / 6 Jun 2014

This Week in Design: June 6, 2014

Some of the best and most notable design projects in the world collided with brilliant examples to entrepreneurism to create major brands and tools that we use every day. Apple, for one, is a classic example. (An appropriate one with WWDC going on this week.) With that in mind, the focus this week in design is on entrepreneurial thought.

Every week, we plan to take 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 [email protected].

How to Use Warm Color in Design Projects

Inspiration / 2 Jun 2014

How to Use Warm Color in Design Projects

Warm and cool colors. These descriptions are commonly used to describe hue choices in a variety of conversations – fashion, beauty, decorating and design. But while we commonly talk about warm and cool, do you really know what these terms mean and how to use the colors?

Today, we will look at using warm color in design projects and create a few color palettes with warm hues. We’ll also investigate the theory and meaning behind different choices.

This Week in Design: May 30, 2014

This Week in Design / 30 May 2014

This Week in Design: May 30, 2014

Every element of change starts somewhere. Some changes happen quickly and with plenty of fanfare; others can go unnoticed. Designers should stop, observe and think about change. How does it happen? What are the implications? What comes next in our creative sphere? This week, that’s what we are focusing on here – change.

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 [email protected].

10 Key Features of an ‘About’ Page

Business / 26 May 2014

10 Key Features of an ‘About’ Page

A great About Us page can make — or even break — your website. For many businesses this can be one of the most visited pages on your website and is a chance for visitors to learn about you and your products.

About Us pages need to be written in clear and simple language and should not be put together as an afterthought. Just like any other page on your site, develop a plan for what message this page should communicate and work from there. Most great About Us pages contain many common elements. Here are 10 things your About Us page needs to include (in no particular order!)

This Week in Design: May 23, 2014

This Week in Design / 23 May 2014

This Week in Design: May 23, 2014

It’s a design smorgasbord. From naming your design business – what does it mean – to a branding evolution and a fun design featuring animal tails, we’ve got you covered with a little something for everyone.

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 [email protected].

GridGum Theme Marketplace Is Open for Business

Software / 21 May 2014

GridGum Theme Marketplace Is Open for Business

The GridGum launch is official. We first told you about the new responsive themes marketplace in April. And now that the shop is open, you can go see for yourself what it’s all about.

GridGum is a marketplace for only responsive, and highly vetted, themes for a variety of platforms. From Bootstrap to Foundation to Gumby or Skeleton to WordPress or Joomla, you can find a theme for almost any site through GridGum.

5 Tips for Creating a Fun Summer Color Palette

Inspiration / 19 May 2014

5 Tips for Creating a Fun Summer Color Palette

The official start of summer is just around the corner. Longer days, warmer temperatures and splashing in the lake or pool are just a few of the things that come with the change in season. When it comes to design, a change in seasons can create the urge to update your color palette as well.

With warmer days, warmer colors, brighter hues and even the use of more color are popular. And while you may not want to change the color scheme of an existing project — although you can – this season can be a great inspiration for designing a project with a summer-inspired color palette. Here are five tips for creating a great color palette with a few swatches to try based on each concept. Happy summer!

This Week in Design: May 16, 2014

This Week in Design / 16 May 2014

This Week in Design: May 16, 2014

This week you should try to get smarter. This is true every week, but our roundup today is focusing on tools, ideas and items that will make you work and feel just a little more educated. That’s what the design community is all about, right?

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 [email protected].

Freelancing 101: How Do I Promote Myself Without Looking Sleazy?

Business / 12 May 2014

Freelancing 101: How Do I Promote Myself Without Looking Sleazy?

One of the toughest things about working as a freelancer can be getting your name out there. How do you connect with the right clients? How can you help those companies find you and your work? And how can you do it without feeling sleazy?

It can be a tough balance. But there are ways to do it. With the right mix of marketing, promotion and word of mouth – and a few design tools – you can find potential clients and feel good about it.

This Week in Design: May 9, 2014

This Week in Design / 9 May 2014

This Week in Design: May 9, 2014

This week has been busy. From a list of the best new typefaces of the year being released to a new PayPal logo, there has been plenty of news in the design world. Add in a few fun topics as well – the Target Photoshop disaster that just won’t go away — and this week in design has been packed with news and information.

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 [email protected].

Horizontal Harmony in Design: Keep It Between the Lines

Layouts / 6 May 2014

Horizontal Harmony in Design: Keep It Between the Lines

Horizontal harmony. It’s one of those things that you seem to only notice when it is missing. Horizontal harmony is the relationship between elements across a design. It’s more than lines and rules; it’s also an invisible grid creates a sense of place for design elements.

How can you create horizontal harmony? While some techniques are easier than others, it is not an overwhelming concept. It just takes a little planning. By thinking about things such as a baseline grid, space between lines of text, positioning of elements and the overall aesthetic, horizontal harmony is just part of the design process.