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Graphic Design

Graphic Design Trends For 2018

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2018 will be a year of modernizing graphic design trends from the past and the flat designs we have seen in the recent years.

Here are 3 Trends we think will have a large impact on Graphic Design in 2018

RESPONSIVE LOGOS

We have now been living in the world of responsive design for a decade. Only now some of the big name brands are introducing what the industry is calling a responsive logo.  The responsive logo will be used across different mediums in order to keep readability and still be brand recognizable to the users eye.

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Using Garrett’s 5 Planes of User Experience in Web Design

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When designing a website, it is important to think through every possible way that users will be interacting with the website. The way they interact with the website is highly dependent on the way it is built. This might sound like a complicated process, but by breaking the process down into its core elements, we can understand it better. Thankfully, Jesse Garrett, an information architect, came up with a principle called Five Planes of User Experience.

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5 Influential Design Trends of 2016/2017

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FLAT DESIGN

Flat design is not necessarily a new trend as the style first originated from the retro logos of the 1940s to 1960s. Flat design has resurfaced recently and is definitely a hot trend that’s been dominating. The simplicity of flat design allows for even simple colours and shapes to become striking, bold and vibrant identities using very few streamlined elements. Big players such as Microsoft, Apple, and MasterCard have also transitioned from their 3D logos of the 2000s to a more simple flat designs that are fresh and minimal. A huge reason for the revival of flat design is because of the shift towards responsive design and universal compatibility with all devices. Flat design allows for logos to scale very well on print or digital devices and in colour or grayscale.

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A quick Guide to Typography

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A Quick Guide to Typography

Typography is arguably the most important part of any design because it carries the overall message. It is also important for the digital marketer to understand and communicate the typography goals of the client, and because many clients have no formal training in typography, it could be difficult for them to explain what they are looking for. This is a brief guide to the world of typography, which tries to bridge the gap between client and marketer. Read More

4 Essential Tools for Every Creative

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If you work in the creative industry, chances are you know that Adobe Creative Suite is the industry standard when it comes to design. However, whether you are a graphic designer or a marketer, every creative needs an arsenal of tools to streamline your workflow.

These four essential tools are simple, yet effective and have proven to be useful in graphic design – but there are many uses beyond just that. From my own experience – these tools have saved me time, money and have increased my productivity. BUT! The best part about these tools? The convenience factor.  It doesn’t matter if you are a design beginner or a seasoned art director – these tools will help maximize efficiency and more importantly, make your life easier. Read More

25 years of Photoshop

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Happy anniversary Photoshop!

Adobe Photoshop has now been around for 25 years. It’s crazy to think that it was released in 1990. February 19th, 1990 to be exact. At the beginning, Photoshop had only a handful of editing features. Since then Adobe has done some major updates. Adding up to over a dozen major upgrades to what it is today. The latest Adobe software is Photoshop CC. Adobe’s continued success has a massive impact on the design world. Allowing for artwork that has never been seen before. It will only get better from here.

“For 25 years, Photoshop has inspired artists and designers to craft images of stunning beauty and reality-bending creativity.” – Shantanu Narayen.

In honor of the anniversary, Adobe is holding a “Top 25 Under 25” artist showcase. This lets many young creative minds show the world what they can do. If you would like to submit a piece of work, visit the Behance website and upload yours using the “Ps25Under25” tag.

Photoshop is used for many different editing purposes. This program has helped many business owners, photographers, and designers create the artwork they are looking for. Along with the help of all other Adobe programs (Illustrator, In Design etc.) Photoshop has the power to do more than just retouching photos and editing. Photoshop is also very capable of video production, web and print design, typography, and 3D design. Used in many different job positions, Photoshop has really proved itself as the industry leader. Growing up using this program I have many memories creating artwork with very little resources. Like many designers being creative is about using what you have and making the most out of it. With the continued improvement of technology, I am really looking forward to the future. Adobe programs will keep getting better and better. This will give the opportunity for anyone to create almost anything they can imagine.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QmYc1MNJaQc

Creative Resources

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Finding the right tools and creative resources to complete projects can really help their outcome and timeline. There are a ton of resources online that help with completing your projects, no matter the subject. Below I have compiled a list of resources to help complete your creative projects.

 

 

 

 

Web Design

LearnableLearnable provides a list of online books and online courses created for web designers and developers. They provide unlimited access to all courses and videos. This is a great resource for all areas of web design.

W3Schools: This website can provide everything from HTML to CSS to JavaScript to XML and lots more. With live code editors it simplifies learning the basics of web design.

CSS3 Click Chart: Most CSS attributes are very hard to remember. This website provides example code of how to use it and what proper attribute to apply to each CSS element. With live demonstration it shows in real time what your coding will look like. From common to cutting-edge coding this resource will help you create exactly what you are looking for.

 

 

 

 

 

Graphic Design

Easel.ly: Handling a huge amount of text is very hard to visually present. This tool is a great way to create infographics without any hassle. It also allows you to edit and share your work with other creative people with the click of a button.

Fount: This tool is also heavily used in web design. Fount allows you to find out what any font type is, just by clicking the page. Easily accessible, it can sit in your bookmarks bar on your web browser. This tool will help to save precious time trying to find the proper font type.

Method & Craft: Just like your local Arts & Craft store, this website is dedicated to helping you learn better design techniques. By providing articles and examples it will easily show you recent trends and new techniques for becoming up-to-date with the graphic design world.

 

 

 

News & Information

Designer News: This provides a live feed of the latest design news. Many people from around the world help to contribute by sending articles, resources and there own findings. By creating your own profile you can find friends and keep in touch with recent design news around the globe.

HOW Design: This is an amazing resource for finding a variety of books, magazines, and how-to videos. The workshop offers a vast amount of tools to help increase your skills and love for design.

Adobe Creative Suite: Adobe now provides the tools that can help with any project. The creative suite comes with an application that can be accessible from your desktop tool bar. This provides a great amount of images, and projects from which people have submitted around the world. Growing and growing it becomes easier and easier to stay up-to-date and learn the newest ways of design.

 

I hope that you’ve found the resources helpful. The Internet can provide many resources to increase productivity and creativity. Although it may be difficult to find exactly what you’re looking for, I hope these links can provide you with the tools to create something awesome in the future. Stay inspired, and stay positive. Now get creating!!

A Second Look: Trends in Web Design and Development

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After spending many hours online, you naturally begin to pick up on web design’s current (and evolving) trends. By visiting a variety of different web sites and communities, you start to pick out specific differences in layouts and styles of each design you stumble upon; you begin to observe the subtle nuances designers have begun to adopt to put their work above and beyond what we call ‘average’. Incorporating the latest trends through a marriage of coding and design is ever advancing the web and how we view it day-to-day; it’s not stopping or slowing by any measure, and you should be ready to embrace it.

Here are a few trends in web design to keep a look out for (and, if you’re a designer or coder, trends to pick up on).

What Web Design Trends to Watch For

1) Grid Style Layouts

The first time I noticed the wide-spread use of grid based structures was on social media (think of Pinterest, Tumblr, Google + and the like). Most social networks use a grid to help display huge amounts of content in an organized, concise fashion to decrease the chances of user confusion and conflict. This creates a simple user experience that enhances the overall time spent of the site; half the battle is creating a strong UX, let alone one that’s pretty to look at and able to captivate users.

Using thumbnail images with some text displays a tidy way to keep information into a easy to read format. This allows users to flow throughout the site and find what they are looking for without relying on search queries, as was once the trend. This grid based layout has also become standard amongst blogs and personal websites for easy content consumption while remaining auto responsive and flexible.

 

2) Extended Form Elements

Creating a simple experience that enhances the user experience is the key to web design; if it’s not intuitive, it isn’t worth interacting with and probably not worth using. This includes using JQUERY to help write smooth, easily-readable code with fewer lines, and overall, much less clutter. CMS’s have been further enhanced by Javascript and JQUERY  (think WordPress, Joomla, etc.) while keeping websites clean on both sides of the canvas (front and back ends).

These elements, which bring a high level of polish and interactive features, live on some of the greatest sites to date. Viewers are now spoiled with liquid-smooth animations and creative website layouts that we never had the chance to experience before the turn of the millennium. 

 

3) Landing Pages

Although they’ve been utilized by sales peoples for quite a long time (for leads and converting users), landing pages have become a rising trend, featured both on one-page sites in addition to email grabbing pages of large websites. Using this element helps to encourage viewers into learning more about a product or company (while, obviously, benefiting your business by allowing you to capture valuable contacts and customer insights). The idea of landing pages is to create a sneak peak at what the company can provide to various types of potential clients, letting them know what sets them apart from the competition. If the customer opens the door to your website, you want them to walk in and enjoy a hot cup of tea, not run for the hills. It’s all about great, converting copy, a proven track record and a beautiful user experience.

 

4) 3D Transition Effects

I’ve come across many websites that are using 3D effects to display image galleries, navigation menus and text animations. Although it’s a fun, punchy feature to use on your site, designers should be wary of using too many animations on a single page (especially on single page themes; you know who you are!). A common effect used on websites is the scrolling fade transition; this allows information to fade onto the page just as the user is scrolling down or transitioning to another slide/section. Modern design is all about introducing content in a smooth, appealing way, and 3D/parallax effects do this quite easily with little effort or code.

 

5) Flat Design Elements

You’ve seen it everywhere; even mobile devices and operating systems (Metro UI in Windows 8 and 10) have picked up flat, layered design.  More and more web designers are using this element because of the simplicity and the professional polish that comes with design elements that lack the aging effects of typical Web 2.0 treatments. CSS3 allows designers to incorporate flatter buttons, text shadows, and rounded corners to keep their designs fresh, current and consistent; it’s much easier to have your website live as a cohesive unit if the design meshes well.

This feature tells us a lot about the future of not only web design, but of UI design in all devices. Apple, Google and Microsoft are only some of the first adopting fresh colours and simplistic (yet stunning) interfaces that are layered, flat and make use of smooth transitions.

 

6) Portraits

Many portfolio and creative websites are now using portraits to add a human element to their website; after all, websites shouldn’t be websites: they should be the face of your business, organization or belief online. A good way to accomplish this would be to include a simple photograph of yourself on your bio page or in a slider on the home page, or even dedicate a section in your ‘About Us’ section.

This helps the user to get a glimpse into who you or your company is on a personal level, removing the corporate illusion of a single unit. Instead of doing what everyone does with portraits, add some creativity and spice; use hover overs, funny faces, GIFs or cultural/hobby photos. Add some character!

7) SVG Images & Icons

You’ve seen them, and they’re taking over by storm. Vector bases graphics are becoming something that almost everyone web site has, either living as a hotlink to another page or service, or serving as a great way to add visual interest to an otherwise boring section where copy might have been used. They help communicate meaning to a heading, service, or button into a simple icon. SVG images are like vector images but can be manipulated much more easily with the hassle you expect from graphic integration on the web. They have the ability to be selected and edited in most Adobe applications. If you still remember the relevance of flat design today, these vector graphics work very well in such environments.

 

8) Responsive Design 

Many people are starting to use their mobile and tablet devices more often than their computers; its a fact many businesses are trying to cope with. Be it social media or corporate websites and tools, people are flocking to not just one device to consume media and interact with the masses: they’re using 2, 3 or even more. The easy access to things like the Internet and email are a huge factor into why mobile technology is becoming something that everybody on the planet is starting to use. Responsive design works the best when you eliminate the excess stuff and only keep the bare essentials. This makes a simpler design and easy to use for all users. Scaling up for computer size is when information can be added and more design elements can be incorporated.

 

As you can see many of the trends are working together to create the World Wide Web  that we see today. I’m sure that as the web continues to grow and reach more and more people, trends will change and evolve. Will we continue to see flat, layer design, or will the Web 2.0 styling with emboss and gradients come back? Will we seen flash websites take to the forefront, or will clean and simple sites live on?  Who knows. The landscape for web design has shifted considerably over the past few years despite the young age of the Internet itself. As more people search for their next fix online, be it that next hot item or to simple message their friends on the next social network, there will be more options to innovate and push boundaries. What do you think we’ll see next?