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 Tips for Finding the Perfect PowerPoint Presentation Template
Business / 11 Apr 2018

7 Tips for Finding the Perfect PowerPoint Presentation Template

A great PowerPoint presentation template can wow audiences, and help you to build a slideshow quickly and easily. While you can create your own custom template, there’s a whole market of affordable PowerPoint templates that you can customize. But what should you be considering when deciding which one to choose?

PowerPoint templates are a great option for designers – or practically anyone – who wants to create a polished, professional-looking presentation that doesn’t take a lot of time to put together. Here’s what to look for to ensure that you are getting the perfect PowerPoint template for each specific presentation.

7 Tips for Using Background Textures in Web Design
Graphics / 9 Apr 2018

7 Tips for Using Background Textures in Web Design

This is not your typical roundup of textures to use for website backgrounds. If you are looking for a specific texture, we have those here. But what if you want to create your own? Or find a way to customize a texture to fit your project? That’s what we’ll focus on today.

While there are many ways to use textures in web design, you’ll get a lot more mileage out of those backgrounds if you take a modern approach, and follow a few simple rules. Here are seven tips to help you use background textures in web design well (and in-line with 2018 design patterns and trends).

How to Install and Apply a Photoshop Action
Graphics / 6 Apr 2018

How to Install and Apply a Photoshop Action

If you aren’t taking advantage of Photoshop actions for editing and image effects, you’re missing out on one of Photoshop’s best features. Here, we’ll take you through how to install and apply a Photoshop action in seconds, and share a few of our favorite free actions to try!

Photoshop actions can save you time when it comes to repeated tasks, and condense entire paths of editing into a single click. (While it might sound too good to be true, Photoshop actions are a very real thing.)

8 Best iPad Apps for Design & Illustration
Software / 4 Apr 2018

8 Best iPad Apps for Design & Illustration

When you want to work on the go, being able to keep a project moving along on an iPad can be a great solution. The device is more portable and a lot easier to travel with than a more bulky laptop. The challenge is finding the right apps and tools that help you make the most of your skills.

Thankfully, there are some great options out there that compare to and even exceed the usefulness of some desktop software. While all of these apps work on different iPad models, there’s increased functionality for most if you have an iPad Pro with an Apple Pencil. These are eight of our favorites (in no particular order).

10 Design Tips for Wedding Cards & Invitations
Graphics / 2 Apr 2018

10 Design Tips for Wedding Cards & Invitations

Wedding season is here. Whether you’re planning to design invitations and cards for your own wedding, or for a client or a friend, there are several wedding card design tips that you’ll want to consider!

Wedding invitations present an opportunity to work with some beautiful elements and printing techniques to create a piece of art that isn’t part of the usual workflow. From scripts with long tails to foiling and amazing paper stocks, designing wedding cards and invitations can be a lot of fun (and a bit of a design challenge).

The big thing to keep in mind is that the invitation should evoke an emotional connection to the couple. It should reflect their personality and style.

7 Tips for Creating a Time-Saving Design for Users
Layouts / 30 Mar 2018

7 Tips for Creating a Time-Saving Design for Users

Users have short—very short—attention spans. That’s probably evident just looking through your website analytics. This makes it more important than ever to deploy design techniques that help users scan and get the most information from your website in the shortest time possible.

It is your job to understand what users need to glean from the design at a glance and help them get that information, so maybe they’ll stick around and explore your website. Here are a few ways to do it!

6 Unique Notebooks for Designers
Inspiration / 28 Mar 2018

6 Unique Notebooks for Designers

Some of the best ideas start with a pencil and paper. That’s why it’s a good idea to always have a sketchpad or notebook nearby to record those ideas when inspiration strikes.

How you use those concepts and sketches can determine what kind of notebook is best for you. (I actually have several go-to notebook styles – one for my desk and a small one that’s always with me in my bag.)

Here, we’re showcasing six unique notebooks for designers that can help you capture ideas and even facilitate projects.

Logo Design Trends of 2018
Inspiration / 26 Mar 2018

Logo Design Trends of 2018

Need a new logo? The early logo trends of 2018 are showing more designs with simple shapes, colors, and typography in formats that aren’t overly complex.

With so many new websites and brands and companies coming online almost every day, it’s no wonder that logos are trending toward more minimal and readable options. Every logo needs to stand out somehow, right?

Here’s a look at a few logo design trends of 2018 and how you can make them work for you.

10 Web Design Commandments for Every Project
Layouts / 21 Mar 2018

10 Web Design Commandments for Every Project

Do you have a rulebook when it comes to website design? There are some rules that apply to pretty much every web design project—let’s call them the “web design commandments”.

No matter how large or small the website, these rules are the foundation for good design. If you follow along with these basic guidelines, and make them part of your thinking for every project you start, you’ll avoid many of the pitfalls that designers can stumble into!

25 Incredible Designers to Follow on Instagram
Inspiration / 19 Mar 2018

25 Incredible Designers to Follow on Instagram

Curating your Instagram feed with designers creating beautiful work can be a great source of visual inspiration. From designers who create for print, web, packaging or almost anything—to creatives that share their process/side projects—the social media platform can be a great place to jumpstart your creative thought process.

And we’re here to help. We’ve gathered a list of 25 incredible designers to follow on Instagram to provide gems of visual gold each time you log in. What’s exceptionally fun about following this collection of designers is that many provide a glimpse into their professional projects as well as real life.

10 Tips for Designing Landing Pages That Don’t Suck
Layouts / 15 Mar 2018

10 Tips for Designing Landing Pages That Don’t Suck

A landing page is the first experience your customer (or potential customer) will have with your brand. It has to convey information, encourage a call-to-action, and reflect your personality. It’s difficult! Today we’re sharing ten landing page design tips to help.

If you just stick your logo and product image on a template, it’ll be obvious. The page won’t provide the experience or information your customer expected when getting there. Whether it is hard to navigate, difficult to read, or a mess of visuals, designing a landing page that doesn’t suck takes planning and precision. Let’s take a look at ten tips on how to do it better.

Build a Website for Any Business With Wix
Reviews / 15 Mar 2018

Build a Website for Any Business With Wix

Different business niches have completely different requirements when it comes to their website. Restaurants need a booking and menu system, musicians need support for playing their tracks, photographers need a beautiful gallery.

No matter what business area you’re currently working on a project for, it’s worth taking a look at what Wix has to offer. They have a range of professional designs and functionality to use a range of businesses—large and small.

Today we’re taking a quick look at the features and templates on offer, whether it’s for your business, portfolio – or for a client.