Category: Articles

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Mobile / 17 Apr 2017

8 Design Tips for a Stellar Email on Small Screens

How many users are opening emails from you on a phone or tablet? It might be a higher percentage than you think. According to Litmus, which provides email tracking software, 54 percent of all emails were opened on a mobile device in 2016.

That means that most of your emails are being seen on a phone. Are you designing an email that makes the most of it? Here are tips to make your email design more mobile-friendly.

Reviews / 12 Apr 2017

5 Benefits of Managed Web Hosting

Managed website hosting can take a lot of the headache out of owning a website. Your host can handle all technical aspects of hosting, including automatic software installs and updates, website themes, and plugin troubleshooting and security.

For most website owners, there are major benefits over using a dedicated server or running a server yourself. Here’s a look at five distinct benefits of managed web hosting, and an insight into our experience at Design Shack of switching over to SiteGround!

Inspiration / 11 Apr 2017

30+ Best High-Quality Photoshop & Illustrator Brushes

We’ve put together a collection of our favourite, high quality Photoshop and Illustrator brushes, to help you put the perfect finishing touch on your next design.

A Photoshop or Illustrator brush is, at its simplest, exactly what you’d expect — a way to draw a particular line or style in a Photoshop or Illustrator document. Click, drag, and paint like you’re using a brush! But in practice, brushes can be used for so much more. From textures and patterns, to lighting and stylish effects, the versatility shown in these examples will give a great idea of what’s possible with a top-notch brush pack!

Business / 10 Apr 2017

Good Design Starts With Real Content

You’ve probably heard the phrase “content is king.” Cliches aside, it really is. When it comes to website design, quality content is the cog that powers usability, user flow and conversions.

You need real and authentic elements to create a connection with users to engage them. The best designs start with content that is close to the final product, and designers should be reluctant to work with anything less. But what is real content anyway? Here’s a guide to get you started.

Business / 5 Apr 2017

Paperless Documentation Is Easy With Eversign

More businesses are trying to find ways to go paperless. Eversign is a great tool that can help you cut the clutter from all those paper documents.

Eversign is a free, online app that helps you create legally binding electronic signatures for work or personal projects. The platform allows users to approve, deliver and sign documents online without printing or scanning a single form. Here’s a look at how it works.

Inspiration / 3 Apr 2017

7 Design Mistakes That Can Ruin Your Content

Design mistakes can happen to anyone. Maybe you’re trying to finish a project too quickly, or you’re working on a complex site design where something simply gets overlooked. But, when they happen, you have to fix them… immediately!

Some design mistakes can ruin your content, cause users to abandon your site, or lose trust in the information you provide. It can be tough to recover from if you don’t make corrections. And so you aren’t confused, each of today’s tips comes with an example of a design that does it right from the Design Shack Gallery!

Business / 27 Mar 2017

5 Rules for Designing an Effective Ad Campaign

Designers have to wear a lot of hats these days. You might create a website one day, a brochure the next, and an ad campaign for print or social media after that.

And while many of these projects all rely on the same theories of design and an eye for what looks good, there are some differences that can impact the success of certain projects. Designing ad campaigns can be tricky if you haven’t done a lot of it. The canvas is often small and doesn’t give you a lot of room for error. You get just one chance to hook a user with design and information. Here’s how to do it.

Layouts / 22 Mar 2017

Design Trend: Experimental Navigation Patterns

Long gone is the idea that navigation menus must be fixed at the top of a website design. While many designers opt for the safe, consistency of all caps navigation across the top of the screen with sans serif typography, more designs are breaking out of this pattern.

Experimental navigation patterns can be fun and interesting if they are intuitive enough for users to understand reasonably quickly. Different navigation styles can add interest to websites that are small, don’t have a lot of content or want users to move around in a specific way.

While experimental navigation isn’t for every design, it can be a fun alternative for the right project.

Reviews / 21 Mar 2017

Why Use Squarespace for Your Photography Site?

Are you ready for the world to see your stellar photos? You need a portfolio website to help showcase your skills and attract new clients.

It couldn’t be easier than with Squarespace. The website building tool has everything you need to build a portfolio site that’s just as stunning as your images in no time. Here’s how you do it.

Inspiration / 20 Mar 2017

30 Simple, Free Time-Saving Tools for Designers

Smart tools and apps — especially those that save time — are a must-have for designers. And we’ve collected some of the latest and greatest in this list of free tools for designers!

From typography helping elements to code snippets and color palettes you can download, this list is packed with everyday items to make your design life easier. Dive in and find some free, handy tools to simplify your workflow.

Inspiration / 16 Mar 2017

30+ Best Poster Mockup Templates

Without the right poster mockup to showcase your work professionally, your poster design doesn’t have the chance to stand out from the crowd. It’s often easy to overlook the way you present and showcase your designs! That’s why it’s worth investing in a set of useful mockup templates.

If you’re working on a poster design right now, you’re in luck. Because we’ve picked out a collection of beautiful poster mockups just for you from Envato Elements, which you can use for presenting your work. Have a look!

Graphics / 15 Mar 2017

4K Video: How to Use It & Where to Find It

Video on the web just keeps getting better. It’s an in-demand feature that everyone wants in their design for good reason. Moving images are engaging, and feel more interactive. A video clip can grab (and hold) the attention of a user quicker and for a longer time frame than just an image alone.

To celebrate a new offering from iStock, we’re looking at the newest trend in website video — 4K. This high-resolution video is a must if you are using video for a website design. Screens are so good and users are so accustomed to top quality visuals that if you aren’t thinking about 4K video, chances are that you might get left behind.

Here are a few ways to use it, and tips for finding great 4K video options to use in your projects.