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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.

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.

Best Free T-Shirt Design Software in 2021

Software / 3 Dec 2020

Best Free T-Shirt Design Software in 2021

When it comes to designing a shirt, you have two primary options – design it yourself using graphic design tools such as Adobe Illustrator or use software made for the job. The good news is that there are plenty of free t-shirt design software options to consider!

There are a growing number of platforms that specialize in t-shirt design and can help you create something that people will want to wear. Some of these tools integrate with a t-shirt sales portal as well, making the process even easier.

Here, we’re going to look at some of the best free t-shirt design software options available and how you can make these tools work for you.

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.

15+ Top Graphic Design Trends for 2021

Trends / 23 Nov 2020

15+ Top Graphic Design Trends for 2021

What’s hot in graphic design? One of the things people always want to talk to me about is graphic design trends. Here’s preview of what’s going to be hot in 2021.

It’s such an interesting topic because there are trends that change slowly over time – just look at the long evolution of flat design to where we are now – and others that seem to flip overnight.

Should you always rush to use the latest graphic design trends in your work? Of course not. But it’s helpful to pick up new ideas, find inspiration, and see what types of techniques and styles are shaping our industry.

What Is Modern Web Design in 2021? 20 Stunning Examples

Inspiration / 19 Nov 2020

What Is Modern Web Design in 2021? 20 Stunning Examples

What are the characteristics of a modern website design? It’s a pretty common question.

From clients asking at the start of web projects to designers trying to figure out how to incorporate the newest and trendy elements, figuring out what modern web design looks like is one of our greatest challenges.

The reality is that it is easy to say what modern web design is not. You know an outdated design when you see it for sure. Here, we’ve collected 20 examples of modern web designs to help shape a better idea of what it looks like.

15 Photography Trends in 2021

Trends / 17 Nov 2020

15 Photography Trends in 2021

Photography trends can be a major influence on how print and digital designs come together. From filters to styles to photo angles that are trending, this part of the visual aesthetic can greatly impact how a project comes together.

Photography trends are dictated by a few things: Visual style of photographers, techniques that are gaining popularity in projects, the ability for images to work with other design elements, and even things such as social media filters.

The same photography trends that you might see in stock images (which we use as examples here) parallels to custom photos as well. Understanding photography trends is important for any designer because you’ll want to discuss photo options (and looks) before you begin a photoshoot for any design project to ensure that your visions are on the same page.