Category: Business

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freelance-negotiations
Business / 16 Aug 2016

5 Tips for Better Freelance Negotiations

Every freelancer needs to master and practice the art of negotiation. From clients that want to haggle over process, to talking someone into a specific style of design or interface style for a project, working on your own involves constant negotiation.

Some of us are more adept at negotiating than others. But even if it is not a natural talent for you, there are some ways to beef up your skills so you feel more confident entering these discussions with clients.

creating-something-bad
Business / 3 Aug 2016

Have You Ever Created Something Bad… On Purpose?

Be honest. Have you ever created something that was just bad? Now, have you ever designed something bad on purpose? It’s a strange concept, but one that we’re going to be exploring more today.

Sometimes designing something bad can actually yield a positive result. Not sure about that idea? Read on and you just might change your mind. (Then think about each example of a “bad design” and how you could fix it.)

creative-days
Business / 1 Aug 2016

10 Tips for Those Days When You Don’t Feel Creative

Today’s story is personal. I woke up, got ready for work, sat down at my computer and then just couldn’t design everything. I mean nothing looked good. I was embarrassed to even call myself a designer.

The harder I tried, the less creative I felt. Was I a design failure? Was my career over? All these thoughts flooded my mind. And then… I just decided to do something else for a while. Some days, you aren’t going to feel creative. It’s going to happen. Here are a few ways to overcome that “designer’s block” and move on to other projects (and work) until you get your mind right.

astronut
Business / 25 Jul 2016

3 New Logo Trends to Try for Your Brand

We all know the story. You spend a lot of time perfecting the perfectly trendy design element… and then, just like that, the trend is over. And your cool design goes with it. But it doesn’t have to be that way.

The trick to designing around trends is speed. To make the most of an emerging trend, you need to get from concept to deployment quickly. The second trend trick is to use trends that aren’t “too trendy,” meaning they pull from classical design elements. Today, we’re going to look at three logo trends that you can start using right away. Done well, they should also have a lot of staying power because they use some more timeless concepts from design theory.

price-list
Business / 11 Jul 2016

Do You Need a Price Sheet? (Pros and Cons)

One of the biggest questions for any design freelancer is “what should I charge?” The second question is “should I publish a price list for potential clients?”

The answer to the first question includes a lot of variables, and only you can determine what a fair market rate is for the quality and scope of work you do in the market where you do business. In terms of the second question, a price sheet can provide a starting point between freelancers and clients. Today, we’ll look at the pros and cons of publishing a price sheet so you can decide if that’s the right option for you!

nike-logo
Business / 5 Jul 2016

How to Design a Minimal Logo That Works

It doesn’t get much more minimal than that classic Nike Swoosh. The design is simple, iconic and you’d be hard-pressed to find someone that doesn’t know what it stands for. The logo is the company.

And it’s so minimalistic. That same concept is trending again in logo design. Minimal logos are the “in” thing from brand marks to badges on website home pages. Whether you have a logo or not, there are plenty of great ways to incorporate this minimal logo style into your design work.

paid-vs-free-stock
Business / 20 Jun 2016

The Benefits of Paid vs. Free Stock Images

Are you ready to take your design projects to the next level? A great visual presence is the best way to make a first impression and grab hold of a user.

From web-based projects, to posters, or even packaging or billboard design, a great photograph is your best entry point. But where do you find high-quality images if you aren’t a great photographer? And how can you get them fast? What are the pros and cons of finding a commercial stock images vs. a free one? Let’s take a look…

design-school
Business / 13 Jun 2016

7 Things You Didn’t Learn in Design School (but Use Every Day)

So many of the skills that get you through a day on the job weren’t things you necessarily learned in the classroom. From working with other people, to tools, to listening to your gut, there are a lot of skills that you develop along the way.

Whether you came up through design school or are more of a self-taught designer, there are a lot of things you probably didn’t formally learn (but know and use every day). If you are still in school or thinking about going into a design-related field, you’re in luck because you can start thinking about these things now. It’s never too late to learn and expand your marketability. (As a bonus, this post is filled with every day projects from the Design Shack Gallery; go check them out.)

invoicely
Business / 9 Jun 2016

Billing Is a Breeze With Invoicely

While one of the best parts of the job for a small business or freelancer is getting paid, one of the worst parts is the paperwork you have to do ahead of that payment. If you are still creating manual invoices, it might be time to look at a cloud-based system that can help you keep track of clients and streaming invoicing.

Invoicely is a powerful online invoicing tool that many small businesses can use for free. The software has been used to send more than 2 million invoices in the past 30 days. Today we’re going to take a look at how it works, and decide if it’s a good solution for your freelancing business!

style-guide
Business / 1 Jun 2016

What Needs to Be in Your Style Guide? (And How Do You Enforce It?)

Everyone with a website needs a style guide. It’s that simple. If you’re wanting to instil more consistency in your project, and get everyone on the same page, your style guide will become invaluable.

Now that we have that out of the way, what exactly do you put in that guide? And how do you make sure other people on the team follow the rules so that your visual presence maintains consistency? That’s a little more complicated. Let’s dive into the topic today.

designing-with-data
Business / 10 May 2016

Data, Data, Data: How Do You Design It?

You are probably swimming in a sea of data. Analytics, reports, metrics and data-based facts are the new norm, and people can’t seem to get enough.

But how do you design with data? How do you take something that can be complex, requiring explanation, and break it down into something smaller and digestible without ruining the meaning of the information? It can be a tough task. Today, we’re going to look at different approaches to designing with data and hopefully provide some usable tips!

crowd
Business / 7 Mar 2016

7 Tips to Make You Stand Out From the Crowd

The freelance economy is growing every day. In mid-2015 more than 15.5 million people in the United States classified themselves as self-employed, and Fast Company reported that projections show that number could increase to 60 million by 2020.

While these numbers are good for you and show support for freelancing as a career choice, there is a catch: the market is getting crowded quickly. To remain successful (or find success if you are just getting started), it’s important that you find a way to stand out from the crowd.