Are you a member? Register or Login

  1. Authors
  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.

10 Digital Design Terms You Need to Know

Business / 27 Aug 2013

10 Digital Design Terms You Need to Know

Design jargon is everywhere. And you need to be able to speak the language. Working on digital projects has its own set of terminology. From dither to color values to fluid or fixed layouts, there are a few terms every designer needs to have a grasp of.

So we’ve made it easy for you, and put together a list of digital design terms you need to know. This list started as a top 10, but we added some bonus jargon for comparative purposes. How many of these terms are you already familiar with?

Graphics / 12 Aug 2013

8 Tips for Print Designers Switching to Web & Digital Design

More designers are working across platforms these days, switching back and forth between print and digital projects. Although much of the theory is the same, in practice there are a lot of technical differences when it comes to working on something that will be printed versus a website. It takes a specific set of knowledge and skills to work effectively and efficiently in both environments.

But it is possible. Here we share eight tips for print designers making the switch to digital projects. (And I can vouch for every single tip as a designer who has made the switch.)

10 Printing Terms You Need to Know

Business / 7 Aug 2013

10 Printing Terms You Need to Know

More and more designers these days are working in a variety of mediums — both digital and print. But it can take a different set of specifications to put together a successful project for each. Print design has its own jargon.

Understanding how printing works (and how to speak the language of printers) is important for any designer. Don’t think this applies to you because most of your business is web-based? Consider this: At some point a client will ask for print components to go with the website, whether they are business cards or posters or just a great handout for presentations. Knowing the printing basics and terminology will help you bridge the gap. Here are ten key terms you need to know.

The Importance of Designing for Readability

Mobile / 22 Jul 2013

The Importance of Designing for Readability

Text is not an afterthought in the design process. It should be your first consideration.

Readability should be one of the top concerns when it comes to any design project. If text can’t be read, then why are you designing in the first place? Good design delivers content in a way that is understandable; readability is a big part of comprehension. Today we’ll be discussing how you can plan a design around the words, so that your projects are easy to read.

Understanding Color: Dominant vs. Recessive Colors

Graphics / 11 Jul 2013

Understanding Color: Dominant vs. Recessive Colors

Ever wonder why your colors don’t look quite right in some situations? It could be a simple as the color choice. Certain colors tend to take on the characteristics of other hues, while others always look pure. In addition, the human eye perceives color in different ways based on whether it is in the foreground or background.

This phenomenon can be explained through dominant and recessive colors. Join us as we take a closer look at these two terms today, and delve into deeper understanding of how they can guide your design choices and decisions.

10 Key Features of Popular WordPress Themes

Inspiration / 1 Jul 2013

10 Key Features of Popular WordPress Themes

WordPress is the framework behind many of the websites and blogs you visit every day, including this one. Latest numbers from WordPress attribute the framework as the backbone of 17 percent of the web.

The platform is simple to use, and thanks to plenty of theme builders it can be customized in a variety of ways for everything from blogs, to portfolio sites, to e-commerce. Themes are the element that take WordPress to the next level, giving almost anyone of any skill level the ability to create a site that doesn’t look like a basic template. There are a few key components that set the best themes aside from the rest. The most popular WordPress themes – both paid and free – tend to have 10 key features in common. Let’s take a look at them.

How to Design a Resume That Stands Out

CV & Resume Templates / 24 Jun 2013

How to Design a Resume That Stands Out

Resumes are everywhere. They can be good, bad or downright embarrassing. But one thing is certain — if you want a job, yours must stand out in a good way. The design needs to reflect your personality, and the information needs to be organized, relevant and spot-on.

More often than not in today’s job market, you may even have several versions of your resume; one tailored toward different types of companies, one for potential clients or another as a showcase piece in your portfolio.

Do I Need to Design With SEO in Mind? a Guide for Designers

Business / 10 Jun 2013

Do I Need to Design With SEO in Mind? a Guide for Designers

You’re probably tired of hearing it, but search engine optimization is important. It can dictate and influence who visits a site, and how many people make it through to see your beautiful design work.

It should be a part of the design process from the planning stages forward. So designers, unplug your ears and make it a priority to learn how you can start thinking about SEO in the design process. Let’s dive into the topic a little more today.

Tips and Advice for a Design Portfolio Review

Business / 30 May 2013

Tips and Advice for a Design Portfolio Review

For every member of the design community – designers, photographers and illustrators – the portfolio is an essential tool when it comes to getting new clients or changing jobs.

The portfolio review can be one of the more stressful parts of your career. It can be tough to take criticism and hear things you may not want to about your work. A good portfolio review will make you better and it is just as important to understand how to receive a review as well as give a good one.

Software / 27 May 2013

Creating a Portfolio With the All-New Dunked

As a designer, I am often overwhelmed by creating a portfolio. I want something that is simple, easy to navigate and showcases a variety of work, including print and digital projects.

I should also be able to update the portfolio easily and don’t particularly want to fool with the hassle of coding. Dunked is the new portfolio solution that meets all of these needs and more. Let’s take a look at it today.

Pinterest for Designers: Using It to Your Advantage

Inspiration / 22 May 2013

Pinterest for Designers: Using It to Your Advantage

Design inspiration is all around us. And every day there are new tools popping up to help us collect and share that inspiration. One of those great tools is Pinterest. The image collection platform is a fantastic source of design inspiration, from typography to print, web or packaging design.

Newer additions to the service, such as boards for business and hidden boards make the tool even more useful. Haven’t gotten on board with Pinterest yet? Not sure how to make it work for you? Read on.

How to Build a Brand Bible & Visual Style Guide

Graphics / 13 May 2013

How to Build a Brand Bible & Visual Style Guide

Every brand, from the smallest website or startup, to corporate giants such as Nike or McDonald’s, need a set of branding guidelines and rules to maintain their identity. This document, which can range from a couple of pages, to several hundred, is the thread that holds together what the public sees from a company.

A brand bible establishes the voice and personality of a company, as well as who the public will see, and it governs every aspect of communication from the company. The brand bible is the basis for all interactions on behalf of a company – personal communications, social media, advertising and design. While a brand bible focuses on many things, we are really going to look at how it affects design.