Welcome. Here you'll find the latest craft-focused Palettes and Patterns, as well as Blog,
Trends and Forums to help guide your next craft project.

Channels»Craft»Blog

Daily Posts. Colorful Ideas & Inspirations.

Our team of writers brings you daily trend coverage, new products, inspiration, information and fun ideas. With an archive of more than 2,167 articles, you're sure to find something you love. Or if you have a great idea, let us know!

Interview With an Artist - Colors & Music


In our previous articles, we've talked about color and psychology, the meaning of colors in different cultures with particular attention to how colors evoke emotions. We know that music holds the same power - we are able to experience a variety of emotions by listening to music, and today we are wondering what is the connection between sounds and colors - can we connect one color with a certain sound and whether these have the same meaning when interpreted by our brains?

 

To discover more, we are talking to Umut Eldem, a composer, pianist, and art researcher. His main field of research is synesthesia, and he will tell us more about this curious phenomena.

 

Hi Umut! Your field of interest is synesthesia, could you tell us more about what synesthesia is and why is it so interesting for you?

Synesthesia is a neurological condition in which a person experiences multiple senses from only one sensory input. For example, along with hearing a sound, a person with synesthesia can also feel a certain taste; or while reading they can see that some letters are in different colors. What is particularly interesting for me is when people can see colors and shapes when they hear music, or so-called chromesthesia (sound-to-color synesthesia).

 

synestesia in music and visual art

 

Do we know any famous artists who had/have synesthesia?

It is known that certain composers had synesthesia, such as Alexander Scriabin, Franz Liszt, and Duke Ellington, but we didn't know much about it until recently. Now, we can do MRI scans and see that different parts of the brain are active when people with synesthesia experience an input of sound or other senses, which is different than the reaction of an average brain. Science couldn't prove it before the technology allowed us, but what is more interesting for me is to understand how these composers correlated notes they wrote and instruments they used to create music with their condition and the colors they saw. This could also help us understand their music better - the ideas they expressed and what we actually identify with.

 

How can scientific research in this area connect with your artistic research?

There are scientists researching synesthesia, especially cognitive scientists and neuroscientists, and what they are exploring is a more practical side of synesthesia. They are researching whether is more common to males or females, is it more common with artists, left-handed people, etc. They are trying to answer the question of why is it happening.

As an art researcher, I am looking into the ways that we can have a better understanding of the manifestation of synesthesia, and how to use it to express artistically. What I'm exploring is how we can use synesthesia even if we don't have it, and how an average brain connects colors and signs. Knowing more about it can help musicians understand musical concepts of the composers we listen to and bring the process of creating music to the next level.

 

What are you working on right now?

My current research is pointed at discovering a general set of rules to develop software which can convert music into visual ideas, shapes, and colors, and use it as a tool for performing musicians. So, as the violin plays, you can project the video performance which directly responds to the music played.

I am conducting artistic experiments where I can see how visual input affects musicians. I add colors to their music sheets and learning whether it is easier for them to play like that, or more difficult. The practical result of this research is to enhance music performance.

 

Do you use colors in your performances, when you play music?

Before learning about synesthesia, I didn't. But now, my interest is growing and I am trying to implement colors in my performances. For example, I did a performance with a narrator, which was reading a piece to the audience, and my music was playing from four speakers set in the room. I used light bulbs which were connected to an app on my phone, so I was able to change the color of the lights based on the tone of the story and also the sound, integrate different colors in different parts of the storyline.

 

How did the audience relate to this piece?

The thing is, when you present an audio-visual piece, music, and colors, the audience will find it pleasurable, so we can't really understand these sensations deeply. However, the audience said that they did find harmony in the way the lights were responding to the music and the story, and connect to the story on a new level.

Although, what is much more interesting for me, as I said before, is to have a video which response to live music. This will be a new way of experiencing music.

 

What kind of artistic experiments do you do?

What is interesting for me to work with is improvisation. I like to see how a musician will play a "red triangle" for example. If they see shapes changing on the screen, how will pianist, violinist, and a drummer react to these shapes as they change? For me, as an observer, this reaction of music to visual art has an aesthetic value, but for the musicians, it has an insightful significance - by doing this they discover more about themselves and how they correlate visual ideas with the music and which aspect of music they will turn to.

 

What is next that is coming up?

Next week I am delivering a workshop as a part of my project "Drawn to music", in Royal Conservatoire of Antwerp, in Belgium. There will be musicians playing in response to visual art, but also the musicians that will draw what they hear. This two-way process will repeat itself and we will see how artists react visually to music and musically to visuals.

 

How is synesthesia different for musicians and visual artists?

Visual art is stationary, comparing to music when we talk about paintings for example. There is a static image that we process in our own time and have an individual experience, while music has a more temporal effect and we all have the same time to experience it. When a classic artist responds to music visually, they are putting music into one frame. There are also synesthetic painters who are well known, such as contemporary Melissa McCracken. When you are a visual artist with chromesthesia, it is easier to express it because you already see colors and you are creating a visual output. It is also easier for the audience to relate to the synesthesia of a visual artist, but for music, it often requires an interpreter to explain the synesthetic potential of the music.

 

Visual artists are very inspired by music. Is it a myth that they spontaneously reflect what they hear?

We are reflecting differently, it is all very idiosyncratic. Everyone has a different color for the same thing, and you will always get something different. Although it is interesting that we always react to music in the same way, there is still a pattern there. The experience is unique, but there is a general tendency of people to connect music and art in the same way. I believe that the biggest value of my research is understanding this general tendency in combining visuals and music in creating something new.

 

If you want to contact Umut and give your input to his research or ask him about it, you can reach him by email.

Author: Nina Petrov

Read the full post

Top 5 VR Designing Software


As we mentioned in our previous article, the thing with VR software is that everybody has a preference and each company is developing new features every day. Here are top picks from designers around the world, and some of their main features.

 

1. Unity 3D

 

Researching many different tools, Unity still stays our number one for all purposes - gaming, real-time film, architecture. If you are already familiar with C# or JavaScript, scripting with Unity will be easy to adapt to and prototype your virtual reality apps real quick. There is a large community built around Unity technology and your design is easy to export to any platform you want.

 

2. Forge

 

Developed by Autodesk, Forge represents a great platform with team management features. Their great toolkit enables you to merge your design with engineering and enable you tools such as Model Derivative API, Reality Capture API and many more.

 

how to make an amazing VR experience

 

3. SketchUp

 

This modeling application was developed by Google, with excellent tutorials to get everyone to model basics quickly. This is an absolute winner for beginners, to get you used to the language quickly before you move on to modeling on some more professional platforms. There is a free trial for this software, so see for yourself.

 

4. Blender

 

Blender is a perfect example of what you can move on from SketchUp, although you can also dive into it straight away. Blender is open source and free for all, which makes it favorite for many developers. This software uses Python and it is compatible with Linux, Windows, and Mac. Another great advantage is the ability to export your work in many different formats, including a format for JanusVR with a free open source plugin FireVR.

 

5. Unreal Engine UE4

 

UE4 is the main competitor to Unity 3D, also a leading gaming software with many integrations, wide store, and good support. It is comparably good as Unity, although some say the results are much more realistic and with better navigation. Unreal Engine also allows you to export to various formats, although not as much as Unity.

 

which VR software to use

 

These are our current top five picks of software to design an awesome virtual reality. Their abilities range based on their target groups - some are more basic like SketchUp, and some way more advanced like Unity 3D and UE4. What software do you prefer for designing and modeling virtual reality? What are the most important features for you, how important are the learning materials and the community?

 

Tell us more about your experience in the comment section below.

 

Author:

Nina Petrov | @fusion_writer | www.ninapetrov.com

Read the full post

The Beauty of Playing and Game Design


The carefree moments of playing and living in a world of our own abstract creation are essential to every childhood. Playing is how we discover the world, how we get to know ourselves, how we interact with others. Playing is our way of experimenting, pushing the limits, breaking the borders, learning about love, friendship, resilience, pain, ethics, everything that matters in the human world.

 

As we grow older, we have less time to discover, relax, or investigate something in depths. We no longer just take our time to grab a metal bar, swing it around pretending it’s a lightsaber, while not paying attention to a chandelier above our heads that we will smash to pieces in a minute (guilty!). This is why we like to be introduced to games from time to time, games designed to project our brain into a different reality, the one we are no longer creating actively ourselves as we once did when we were children.

 

Designing a game is an art form on its own - it is a beautiful combination of designing a visual space and making it interactive and user-friendly. Game design merges a variety of knowledge about psychology, aesthetics, mathematics, social phenomena and the process of learning, and it creates an art piece which communicates and develops different parts of the human brain.

 

Game design implies creating a set of rules and goals, with many challenges on a journey to reach the goals. Each set defines a game, be it board game, role-playing game, dice game, card game, sport, war game, casino game, video game, or a simulation of a life segment that brings different outcome from interaction with the player. Depending on what we are designing our game for - different aspects of the game are in our main focus. A game which has a goal to educate will focus more on the strategy and iterative decision-making, while Googles dinosaur just goes on and on until you're back online.

 

Games offer us an inexhaustible way to learn about human behavior, psychology, and sociology, but also discover more about the way our brain cells are connected (The Stanford Prison Experiment might not be the best example). It is scientifically interesting what impact video games have on the minds of those who play them, and scientists confirmed that some abilities such as orientation, pattern-shaped memory and sense of time are more developed among people who play more video games.

 

If you are thinking of becoming a game artist, as a designer you will have an opportunity to help create a new world, starting with choosing and designing the figures, board, cards, or drawing a storyboard for a video game. Designing games can teach you how to use narrative elements and storytelling for game plots, visualize many different storylines and challenge your designing skills, especially if you dive into video game design.

 

What is truly revolutionizing the video game industry today is a rapid development of virtual and augmentative reality software and technology. This tech is giving us more possibilities by month, enabling us to discover games which are placing the game features into our own bedroom, able to turn your home into an escape room - and all you need is a pair of lenses. The world we grew up with is struggling to catch up with this fast technological evolution, and all over the sudden - sci-fi features are not so sci-fi anymore.

 

using VR in Game Design

 

Virtual reality is yet to be exploited as an art tool, and many contemporary creators are theoretically exploring the possibilities for virtual galleries, theaters, and concerts. The important focus of their research is that VR lets you enjoy the art piece without distractions, but also without collective empathy of the audience. But, more importantly, VR can sustain more interactive art, which is turning art into a game with an unlimited number of participants.

 

The gaming industry is growing bigger every day, expanding the variety of tools which are built for the sole purpose of gaming. If you have an urge to explore, and start designing life-changing stories which the users can experience with all of their senses, here is our recommendation for where you can start.

 

Unity 3D is the leading 3D engine which is super friendly to new users enabling you to learn how to use it fast, and very strong to satisfy you when you progress into a reality designing expert. This software is completely free for every game-builder and with a little help from GoogleVR plugin you can create your first game in just five minutes, and play it on both IOS and Android.

 

It is a fun and creative way to spend your afternoon, and you can learn something new every day. The only technical equipment you would need for this is a VR headset, which is now easily available for everyone.

 

If you are not so much into the virtual world, there is a large field of designing board games and card games (in fact, this industry makes the biggest capital on crowdfunding platforms such as Kickstarter), which is worth exploring and playing with. One thing is absolutely certain - game design has a great impact on the development of our society. Maybe you can be the change we want to see in the world?

 

Sources: Unity 3D, Mind Field, Instructables, Pergamon Press

 

Author:

Nina Petrov | @fusion_writer | www.ninapetrov.com

Read the full post

Top 5 Tips for a Good Flyer Design


There is always a wonderful feeling to designing something great, having it printed, and sending it to the right audience. This is the reason designing flyers can be both a lot of fun and rewarding. Here are top five tips to designing a good flyer.

1. Have a clear target for your flyer

Before you start designing your flyer, create an effective design strategy. Think about what you intend to showcase to your audience, how the flyer will be distributed, and the level of budget you plan to work with.

Addressing these issues can help you figure out the size and shape your flyer should have. Having a good strategy and a clear goal will help you plan how to incorporate a vital message into the flyer design in a more meaningful way.

A common mistake when it comes to the creation of a flyer is thinking that you can simply fit any kind of message and graphics in. Instead, you should make a strategic choice about your key content. Keep the flyer’s key elements that correlate to your specific goals of the targeted audience.

2. Amp up the flyer’s contrast

Generally, high-contrast visuals are easy to notice at first glance and are believed to be attention-grabbing. Unlike sites, where visitors can only view visuals by clicking or even typing in a specific address, a flyer requires a strong pull to get your target audience to gravitate towards it.

Think of posters, brochures, and other materials you have ever seen from a distance and walked towards them just because they were attractive and interesting. You need to create that type of contrast to help bring your target audience to the design.

3. Don’t ignore keywords

Certain phrases or words can help you sell the information in your flyer design. Make these phrases or words bolder, bigger, and brighter than the other lettering in the flyer to create emphasis. Put more emphasis on words like ‘New,’ ‘Easy,’ ‘Save,’ and more.

4. Call to action

Though you may not click it, does not mean a call to action should not be included in a flyer design. In fact, the opposite is true. Why should you create a flyer if you don’t want your target audience to take a particular action?

Focus on creating a distinct, easy, and actionable item for every client or prospect who sees the flyer. That can be anything from calling a specific phone number to visiting a specific site. Ensure that the content is easy for everyone to read and understand.

5. Use top quality imagery

Nothing can make or break a flyer design like the quality of image and composition. Note that a perfect design must have a top-quality image that relates to the details on the page. The image should be easy to read and comprehend at a glance. It should also help your audience to connect the different elements in your flyer design. Always ensure that the graphics on your flyer must enhance the message you are sending.

Read the full post

Color as a Factor in Enhancing Student Learning


Everything is associated with a particular color. For painters, marketing professionals, and designers, it is vital to use various color shades to achieve business success. But very few know that color can affect learning abilities as well.

Most educators admit that colorful desks and chairs along with glowing bulletin boards can turn a faded classroom into a bright place that holds students' attention. Colors do more than just animate a surrounding environment. They are so powerful that if used incorrectly, they can cause students to become overexcited and overactive.

The use of a particular color can greatly affect the learners' feelings and performance. Thus, when it comes to the design of classrooms, it is crucial to understand the psychology of colors so that one can find out which colors to use and which ones should be avoided.

Green Helps to Concentrate Better

You have probably noticed that by having a walk to the woods. Along with delivering fresh air, green trees make people restful and calm, boosting their creativity and increasing their focus. Therefore, this color is a great choice for sharpening students' concentration. Except for being one of the best for our eyes, it is associated with nature. For this very reason, actors relax in green rooms while not performing. This color helps learners to maintain their concentration for a long time, making it a perfect choice for school. The same cannot be said about red, which produces an opposite effect.

There is scientific evidence indicating that those who study in green classrooms show better academic performance than those who don't. In fact, the color enhances the students' mental state and thus improves their learning capabilities. It is recommended to use green in the school design so that students can always look at it for a while to revitalize and turn their focus toward educational materials with ease.

Orange Enhances Mood

Orange can enhance mood, promote comfort, and boost the brain functioning of students. There are facts indicating that an orange surrounding affects the oxygen supply to the brain and stimulates attentiveness. When learners get an increased amount of this color, they start to feel more revitalized and ready to put things straight. There are many examination halls painted in this color to improve students' results.

Schools should remember that bright orange can overstimulate those who are inherently highly energetic. This color is perfect for underlining the content presented on the screen as it draws the recipients' attention. Thus, many teachers refuse to use the usual red color in favor of this color for obvious reasons.

However, because it is very bright, it can create an overwhelming effect. In ancient China, this color was used for sharpening concentration and promoting self-discipline. But then again, they avoided bright orange as it could have caused them a headache. Taken all, it is good but only if used in small doses.

Blue Increases Productiveness

The conducted studies have shown that those with increased cognitive load, such as educators, learners, and so forth, feel better when surrounded by blue. But with all this, it is nonsense to live in a monochrome environment - cool colors should be combined with warm ones. The best solution is to balance one color with its complementary one.

The blue color helps to learn in challenging situations. It also helps readers to better assimilate information. Therefore, the use of blue paper and ink for employment is a fairly reasonable solution. While this color, especially its light shades, seems to be soothing and calming, its darker shades may cause anxiety.

As for professionals, many of them advise to combine blue with orange, especially for drawing students' attention to important educational materials. In a nutshell, blue can help teachers to engage learners in a high level of thinking, but too much of it can cause apathy and unamiability.

Classroom Design

In preschool and elementary school, it is advisable to use warm colors, which greatly complement the extroverted nature of kids. In middle and high educational institutions, cool colors can do the trick as they help students to relax and focus on educational materials better. Light shades of green will work well in libraries as they promote calmness.

Even though most educators cannot decide on what colors to use for walls in classrooms, they can choose school desks, chairs, bookcases, and wall decorations. Therefore, instructors and learners can benefit from the colors of school furniture and decorative elements. Using brightly-colored desks and chairs in places where students are supposed to acquire new information can make a difference. Cool colors will work well in areas where kids are supposed to relax and get more concentrated.

When it comes to bulletin boards, there is no need to combine too many colors; two or three colors complementing each other are more than enough. If schools overdo with colors, students can get overwhelmed and confused, and have the only desire that someone, for example, Pro-Papers, will do all the tasks for them.

Like schoolers, educators also come under the influence of colors. It is important for them to be surrounded by proper colors as they have to spend a whole working day at school too. To stay motivated and inspired, teachers should use soothing shades around their desks.

In conclusion, many studies show that every color has its effect on both the psychological and physiological states of a person. While some colors are soothing, others seem to be more stimulating. By applying an understanding of the psychology of colors to school design, one can see how vital it is to make sure that the colors used in school settings bring maximum results in terms of the academic progress of children.

Read the full post

Mint, butter, chartreuse and others - colors we should love and use more often


Let’s stop lying to ourselves - we’ve all been there! Choosing the right colors for your design or artwork can be a real pain when you are just starting out.

Many Colourlovers actually started learning about color looking through other users’ palettes and trying to see how they match and mix them.

A good piece of advice I can give you as beginner color users is to take a look at some of the pieces your favorite artists have produced. How do they use color? How do they emphasize what’s important and what’s not? How do they create contrast? Do they use a particular color throughout their work in the same way? What message does that send about their art?

Whether we talk about designing, illustration, painting, photography, craft or any kind of art form that involves using color, what’s important to consider is the meaning of each of the colors in the color palette we chose for our art piece?

Colors have more to them then just to make our work look pretty. Besides making it come to life, they also send a message to our audience.

First, let’s understand the basics.

Primary colors are red, blue and yellow. All the other colors derive from these three.

We get secondary colors – orange, green and purple as a combination of two primary colors.

 

Color property

 

The first on the list is purity. A pure color is the one that hasn’t been mixed with any other color, therefore its intensity remains original. A good example is the primary color blue. If it’s mixed with a bit of red, it loses purity as its intensity changes.

Hue is dependent of the dominant wavelength and it is independent of color intensity. When choosing color for a specific artwork, you might need a certain color to be a hue closer to green rather than yellow.

Shade (tone) and tint are in effect terms defining two opposite processes. When we want a stronger tone of green, we add more gray to it. A quieter version of the same green will have a higher purity, meaning less gray added to it.

When creating a tint of green, we will add white to it. The more white we add, the lighter the color becomes. Primary or secondary colors amalgamated with white create  pastel colors.

Lightness or value is a property that tells us about the amount of black or white mixed with the chosen hue. It is represented on the scale 0-100%. Green with 100% lightness is pure. Green with 50% lightness is darker.

 

 

Colors throughout cultures

 

Today we’ll learn about color and the cultural connotations certain colors have. I chose a couple of often underrepresented colors to analyze. For more colors and meanings, take a look at the book “The Designer’s Dictionary of Color” to comprehend color theory on a much deeper level.

 

Butter

 

This color awakens a sense of happiness without being intrusive. Depending on how we use it, in some combinations it can seem washed out and pale. On the other hand, when using butter we minimize the risk of unfavorable cultural implications.

Most nations relate butter to happiness, optimism, the feeling of general positivity. Its soft character makes it a good color choice for branding institution or trying to invoke a feeling of domestic bliss.

Other names: Lemon, Vanilla, Cream.

One of the successful applications of butter was using it for the color of post-it notes in 1974.

How would you use this color?

https://bit.ly/2Czfl78  https://bit.ly/2McX7rN  https://bit.ly/2CzW5q9  https://bit.ly/2CwxgLM  https://bit.ly/2oSsezu  https://bit.ly/2wYGCuw

Chartreuse

Nor green nor yellow, this color got its name after a French liqueur that is produced in a monastery close to Grenoble. This color screams creativity, boldness, youth. It shouldn’t be used as a green that presents nature as it’s more aggressive.

Other names: citrus, lime, yellow-green.

Cultural connotations can be positive and negative. Positive ones are growth, prosperity and travel. The negative ones are sickness and envy.

Which colors would you match chartreuse with?

 

 

https://bit.ly/2NQrrhF https://bit.ly/2QamtZy https://bit.ly/2OlRlsM https://bit.ly/2Iph1Q2 https://bit.ly/2R4PB5P https://bit.ly/2ImFZQ1

 

Coral

 

The word coral stems from old Latin word “corallum”. It’s a color often associated to femininity, the tropics, softness, courtship. In the culture of the Caribbean countries, it is regarded as a carefree, festive color. It is seen as a friendly color, and a tidbit more sensual than pink.

In the cultures of the East it symbolizes life force and longevity.

Marilyn Monroe used to wear a coral lipstick. It was contradictory with the rest of her black outfit. These colors were selected on purpose to send a message of her dual personality: simultaneously sensual and innocent.

Other names: salmon, shell pink, watermelon.

Have you ever used coral? If so, which colors did you match it with?

 

https://bit.ly/2Qg5oxE https://bit.ly/2NKvvzQ https://bit.ly/2ImabL0 https://bit.ly/2OhTNRe https://bit.ly/2DEMZsO https://bit.ly/2Ois2YN

 

Mint

 

Mint is a color that resides on a playful border between blue and green. Mint recalls of life, nature, financial prosperity. It’s associated with growth, youth, innocence, and beginnings. It is a cool color that has to be carefully sent to print. A slightly bit more of yellow can turn it into a turquoise, and not enough yellow can turn it into light blue.

It’s often used for brands related to spiritual pursuits or holistic healing.

It has to be carefully combined with other colors in the palette in order to avoid it looking too cold.

Other names: pale green, aquamarine.

 

 

https://bit.ly/2IozHPW https://bit.ly/2R7pQSk https://bit.ly/2xIskPk https://bit.ly/2Ojc4xD https://bit.ly/2xZggbu https://bit.ly/2Inigzj

 

 

Scarlet

 

If red conveys a feeling of energy, scarlet conveys feelings of danger and passion. As a color, it's attention-grabber. It can be used more successfully than red alongside a color such as blue as it is less probable it will resonate and create a contrast that's unpleasant to look at.

It was used in times of Old Romans as a color that informed of one's prestige. Catholic cardinals often wore it.

Nowadays, as a color it often relates to education and knowledge, but also adultery.

 

Other names: Burgundy, brick.

 

scarlet color palette

 

https://bit.ly/2qWf0mw, https://bit.ly/2RZzYwj, https://bit.ly/2Kg5weA, https://bit.ly/2KhmrNU, https://bit.ly/2FvdH81, https://bit.ly/2zjQIaD

 

Peach

 

And last but not least - peach. Color peach reminds us of the fruit. It's regarded as  warm and soft. It has been associated with the goddess Venus.

When selecting our nuance of peach, we need to be careful not to add too much yellow because that might remind of jaundice.

It is used in branding of a couple of prestigious restaurants around Europe, one of them being Sant Ambroeus in Milan.

Other names: Apricot, melon, shell.

 

https://bit.ly/2N8XIeD https://bit.ly/2xItyd8 https://bit.ly/2xVm1qJ https://bit.ly/2DCy7uR https://bit.ly/2QdWEI8

 

New year, new colors. Even though we love colors, sometimes we catch ourselves repeatedly using all the same combinations for our designs, and for our crafts. This short guide can help you understand more color choices and how and when to use them. Stop making excuses.

What color will you choose to include in your designs?

 

About the author:

Ana Maksimovic is the community manager and editor at Colorlovers. Part-time traveler and part-time web and graphic designer, she loves working with sustainable brands. She supports circular economy and good businesses and writes about social entrepreneurship. She is passionate about photography and nature -  a never-ending source of inspiration.

Read the full post

5 Things You Need to Master for Stunning Designs


When it comes to getting started with creating stunning designs, two things are necessary: skills and resources. However, for starters, graphic design can all seem a little too overwhelming at first. From long hours of practice to an unending need for creativity; not to mention some graphic design resources cost a pretty penny, it can sometimes become an uphill task for novices. But that shouldn’t deter you from creating stunning designs. As a matter of fact, there are plenty of amazing freebies and affordable tools that can help you get the head start you need to become a veteran designer. Plus, with the right skills, you can be a master in the game without even trying.

In this blog post, we’ll highlight 5 things that you need to master in order to get an edge in creating stunning designs. Sound good? Let's dive right in.

UI Design

Here’s the blatant truth: No matter how amazing your designs are, it's pretty much pointless if they don't make a good first impression. That is to say, if people don’t like what they see at first glance, then you’re probably not going to wheel in as many people as you would want. So it makes perfect sense that we would mention the UI design here.

The truth is, UI design is pretty much a necessity when it comes to the graphic design front. So, it’s good you have all your bases covered in as far as skills go but every other graphic designer does too. So you need to ensure that you have an ace up your sleeve. If you make a good first impression, then whatever you call to action has a higher chance of being acted on.

Photoshop Overlays

Don’t take chances! You need to be able to create stunning designs every single time. But you and I both know that it’s much easier said than done. Not to mention your audience is a bit more particular and will often times shun blatant designs almost as soon as they see them. Therefore, you need to create compelling images. Images that will create a connection between you and your audience. Images that will ultimately convert your audience into customers. But how do you do that?

Fortunately, there’s no shortage of tools to help you create stunning designs. And one of the best in this front is Photoshop overlays. Photoshop overlays are one of the most versatile ways to transform the look and feel of your designs. With photoshop overlays, you can add texture and elements to an image and transform an otherwise uninspiring image to a stunning piece of art. So whether it's a stunning fog effect that you are looking for or a whimsical autumn, fairy garden or falling leaves effect, there are literally dozens of themes to help you create the perfect design. If you’re looking to create stunning designs, then you definitely need to master photoshop overlays.

Lightroom Presets

It goes without saying Lightroom presets are yet another resource you need to master in graphic design. From nitty-gritty aspects such as image exposure and white balance to more complex aspects such as curves, tones, and shadows. Along with ensuring that you create stunning designs from the onset, Lightroom presets have a lot to offer. Also comes in handy later on when you want to ensure that the final piece is nothing short of a stunning masterpiece. And the best thing about Lightroom presets is that they’re pretty easy to master.

Typography

Next up is typography. Typography is basically the art and technique of arranging the visual component of written words to make written language more legible. If you want to master typography, there are lots of typography tutorials to help. However, good typography often comes down to creative intuition. Once you grasp the basics, all you need to do is look for typography resources that will help you further sharpen your skills.

Here are some typographic considerations that you’ll need to take into account when mastering typography.

Size

Typefaces are not created equally. Some are wide some fat, some are narrow and yet others thin. So word sets in different typefaces take up a different amount of space depending on the size.

Tracking and Kerning

Tracking here relates to the spacing of characters applied evenly whereas kerning is basically adjusting spaces between characters to create a harmonious pairing.

Logo Designing

Here is another thing that you need to master to create stunning designs every time. In many forms and instances, the logo is what distinguishes a particular company from the other. Think about Guinness, Coca-Cola, McDonald's, and KFC. They are all visually represented by their logos. It doesn’t matter where they are in the world customers will still flock towards the direction that these logos are.

The truth is, the importance of a logo cannot be underestimated. They not only help identify a company but they are also a succinct and efficient way of communicating more about the company. Which means that the designs have to be both intuitive and stunning to wheel people in.  And since it’s something you’ll probably be doing a lot of, it's definitely one of the many things that you want to master to perfection.

Conclusion

Don’t let yourself be overwhelmed by the number of graphic design skills you need to master to create stunning designs. Sure there are plenty more things that need to be mastered but these five are the most important. The bottom line is to ensure that you have mastered every aspect of photoshop overlays, typography, Lightroom presets, logo designing and UI design to come up with stunning and striking designs every time.

Read the full post

The Vast Rewards of Owning Your Very Own and Personal Koozie


Originally designed to thermally wrap a beverage, this increasing trend of custom koozies serves even more ingenious purposes. With today’s market rapidly expanding, it becomes difficult to satisfy the expectations of your guests, clients, or even family members. Our customizable product will fit your needs no matter the purpose.

  • Represent your brand in purple fashion

If you are ready to take action aimed at building your company’s image and developing or expanding relations with clients and contractors, purple Koozie reflects professionalism and elegance. Putting aside the value of publicity, personalized gifts effectively present your company in a fashionable and expressive way. Your logo on a trendy, colorful, and shapeful Koozie will speak for itself in a variety of places, spreading the company’s eloquent message across the nation or even globally. Company’s gadgets tend to build the brand’s image, increase the probability of recommendation, and they testify to the stability and professionalism of your business. This commitment can bring very valuable and long-lasting results and relations. It’s your chance to shine!

  •  Advertise with a green Koozie

When we talk about personalization in marketing, we must remember that the gadget is an extremely accurate method. A personal relationship with the brand that is being built when the gift is received is stronger than with most other advertising tools. Our custom Koozies make ideal candidates for promotional purposes: there is a wide spectrum of opportunities, places, and events in which they can be used; emotions that accompany the moment of receiving a gift “ignite” the effect of reciprocity; green Koozie is a perfect way to demonstrate creativity and ingenuity of your brand and its people - the color translates into the movement. This hot item will make the best offline advertising tool, whether it is to market a desired product or the company itself.

  • Koozie White or Black Party Favors

When organizing a party or any type of celebration, it is worth remembering to thank your guests for coming. Spoken appreciation is always a good idea, but increasingly we turn to delighting and creative favors that our guests can take home. With our black or white custom Koozies, you will deliver three perks in one single item - the practical advantage of thermal insulation of our Koozie, a way to express your gratitude, and a personal and unique message designed specifically for that one person. Of course, keep in mind that our Koozie changes colors with changing theme of the party.

  • Politically Correct Red Koozie

There is no need to use bizarre or extraordinary ideas in the political campaign. What a better way to reach the audience than the custom-made and loud Koozie with a message that will stretch throughout the nation? Giving away printed beer sheaths will serve campaign’s purpose and attract voters. Through our red Koozie, you may display your vision in the unprecedented way. In addition to spreading your philosophy, ideas, and memo, let’s not forget about the convenience of owning a Koozie - the benefit of surviving indoors or outdoors with your hot or cold beverage.

Where can I get my personal Koozie?

With suppliers widely available, it is not difficult to find the product you are looking for. However, with such enormous amounts of resources, the quality is often questionable. Express Imprint delivers high-quality Koozies with your very own unique design, therefore we highly encourage you to put trust in the company that ensures your satisfaction.

Read the full post

Photographer's secret weapon: how to make your pics standout


When you see the work of great photographers, you possibly wonder how do they manage to do it. What magic is enabling them to create these masterpieces? You might think that success lies in having the right gear, professional models, enough money to travel around the world, and of course talent. But the truth is that behind every great photographer is a huge amount of passion, hundreds of hours of practice, and some simple secrets. So obviously, it's not about expensive gear (some photographers use an analog camera, proclaiming the independence from technology). It's not about traveling to exotic places and photographing famous people. It's about how much you love what you do and how you grow your creativity.

 

  • Grow Your Creativity

 

Creativity comes naturally to some people. But if it's not developed and maintained properly it may vanish during the struggle with procrastination. The good thing is that you can boost your creativity and find a source of inspiration for everyday practice.

 

 

  • Think Outside the Box

 

Great composition is essential in photography. What you put in the frame and how you put it, determines the success or the failure of your images. If all your pictures are in landscape format and taken at your eye level than it's time to make some changes. Challenge yourself to get outside your comfort zone, try to impose yourself temporary rules. For example, try not to use the landscape format for a couple of days. Another good practice is to make monochrome compositions. Black and white photography helps you better observe the shapes and the geometric elements. To add even more inspiration, try using some special effects, like Luminar's splash effect. It allows you to keep the color of a certain object, while everything else is in grayscale.

 

  • Treat Yourself with Artistic Experiences

 

Creativity needs inspiration. A visit to a botanical garden may give you some ideas. Take a long walk in the city. Even a local fair, a traditional market or a touristic landmark may be a good source of inspiration. Visit art museums, galleries, and photography exhibitions. Most people react to art, but it doesn't necessarily have to be paintings or photography. You may be inspired by classical music, jazz, theater or movies. It's important to expose yourself to art in any form.

 

  • Take a Course

 

Learning is always a good idea. Photography courses became fashionable lately. Among dozens of online classes for beginners, you can find some worthwhile courses and tutorials. Amazing photographers like Albert Watson and Annie Leibovitz teach technical classes, but also offer mentorship, portfolio reviews, and insights. From the master classes, you'll find out how to minimize the photo editing process. You'll find out that style and patience are the most important qualities of a photographer while technicalities are left to an image editor. For example, lightroom plugins can solve many of the basic adjustments, while you focus on finding your inner voice.

 

  • Do Snapshots

 

Scheduled photo sessions are good, but photographing unexpected events is even better. Take a camera with you or at least a smartphone with a decent camera. A photographer is an observer. Street photography and travel photography are based on snapshots. Be prepared and keep your eyes opened. Ingenuous female poses, candid children games, dramatic events, wildlife pictures, they all happen spontaneously. You have to be there and feel the moment. Some photographers choose a place and wait for something to happen. They believe in the magic of that place and can 'feel' a good shot. Doing snapshots is also a good practice. It helps you to get acquainted with your camera and change the settings fast.

 

  • Use Filters

 

To make your pictures standout, filters may be a great help. They aren't expensive or hard to use. Their functions are limited, but you can use up to two or three filters at the same time. The most common filters are the circular polarizing filter, the neutral density filter, and the color enhancing filter.

 

Photography is an art, even if today we all have a camera in our pocket. The biggest mistake you can make is to think that Camera will resolve everything. Sure, you have some amazing image editors, and cameras Henri Cartier Bresson wouldn't have dreamed about. But the secret weapons behind a great photographer are creativity, dedication, and motivation.

Read the full post

The palettes of 2018


Being creative is hard work. Creative block is real! As an artist, you need to practice and motivate yourself daily. But when putting colors together is something that you love, it comes natural. Right?

We thank the community here @Colourlovers for being so supportive and accepting and for coming up with amazing color combinations this year.

Let's check out the palettes that marked 2018 and give a big round of applause for the authors.

colourlovers palette of 2018 colourlovers palette of 2018 colourlovers palette of 2018 colourlovers palette of 2018 colourlovers palette of 2018 colourlovers palette of 2018 colourlovers palette of 2018 colourlovers palette of 2018 colourlovers palette of 2018 colourlovers palette of 2018

Which one is your favorite? Can you decide?

Read the full post

Search The Blog

Subscribe & Share

Our Latest Tweets

Attention #colourlovers: Thanks for voting! Friday = champagne glitter!
about 10 hours ago
Tweet this ArticleFollow @COLOURlovers

Latest Articles

//View More ›

Latest Craft Colors

//View More ›

Latest Craft Palettes

//View More ›

Latest Craft Patterns

//View More ›