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It is very popular these days to use web resources and services to deliver better quality and save time or even money. I dare to say that it is a damn fine idea. Why build from scratch rather than let the web tools or services do their magic?
You can focus on delivering quality and increasing the user engagement, while the web tools and services can help you with your daily tasks. Below there are many WordPress professional plugins, themes and a managed hosting solution; website builders, a fmarketplace with thousands of digital products and many useful services.
Check the reviews below and share your thoughts.
Selling and sending tickets online is now easier than ever. Tickera is a highly appreciated WordPress plugin which will help you have your own online ticketing system. It is fully compatible with all WordPress themes which respect the standard and will blend perfectly into your new or existing designs.
Everything you need can be done with Tickera, it is packed with tons of features and options. You can use their ticket builder to fully customize and differentiate your VIP and standard tickets. You can put barcodes, use discounts to boost sales and much more. Much more can be done, check their website.
The pricing starts from $49 per year and there is a one-time installment fee of $70. Keep in mind that Tickera does not take a cut of your profit, they have fixed, transparent costs. It is probably the most affordable and professional solution on the market.
See Tickera in action! Here are some examples of the most used scenarios for ticket selling. Whether you are hosting single event or having website with multiple events or decided to harness the power of Tickera and WooCommerce fusion via Tickera Bridge for WooCommerce - it is all there for you to try out in "real life" examples! If you need a demo account go here.
With more than 1.5 million active sites daily, LayerSlider is probably the best premium multi-purpose animation platform which will help you build sliders, gorgeous image galleries, animated landing pages and even full websites in record-time.
LayerSlider is the complete solution, being packed with tons of features and options. It has versatile layouts where you can select a full screen, full width, full size or hero scene display mode. It is fully responsive, looking great on any device: smartphones, tablets and desktop computers. LayerSlider is having the best drag and drop editor on the market. It is super simple to use, you don’t need to have coding skills or previous experience and it has everything included to help you: live preview, undo-redo, keyboard shortcuts, Photoshop-like image editor which works excellent and much more.
The version for WordPress costs $24 and for jQuery is just $15, both having lifetime updates with regular new great things included and 6 months support. On their website you will find all the documentation you may need and a dedicated support team to help you.
Beyond being the first Managed WordPress hosting solution, Pagely is committed to creating a company that values employees and customers first. They work hard, are kind to everyone, and act with a conscience. It's these values with which they’ve built a best-in-class service with the industry's top engineers who care about the communities they serve on a human level. This, along with an innovative and proprietary tech stack built on Amazon Web Services makes them the market leader in managed WordPress hosting for enterprise.
Pagely utilizes a partnership with Amazon to deliver the best-Managed WordPress hosting services on the market with the most experienced technical staff in the industry. They are focused on enterprise and the public sector but any WordPress website which needs speed and availability will benefit from having Pagely on their side.
Check Pagely and pick the plan you need, if you don’t know what fits best you can discuss with their friendly and professional support team.
Goodie is a professional but with a different approach web development service which will build you the website you dream for. The price is starting from $999 and if you need more features, Goodie will send you an affordable quote for the additional options. If your website is super-simple, they will add value, so your website will worth the money you have paid.
Upload your projects details and get in touch with Goodie.
Ultra is a powerful WordPress theme made by the well-respected developer Themify. It includes a brilliant and easy to use drag and drop builder, 11 bonus add-ons and the possibility to create unlimited websites with the license.
WPKube has a small, yet a premium collection of WordPress themes which you will find very interesting. All their themes are pixel-perfect, multipurpose, load extremely fast and are SEO friendly. Check their portfolio.
Apply is a gorgeous, free one-page theme which is having a modern and clean design. It can be used showcase your mobile app, but also for other scopes. The free themes are having lots of features and options which normally can be found in the premium templates.
Postcards can be quickly used to create professional emails without writing a single line of code. The powerful drag and drop builder and the 70+ elements will make your life easy. Keep in mind that the elements are retina-ready, you can choose from 800 Google Fonts and more customizations can be further made.
Slides is a premium website builder which will help you have your own gorgeous website in minutes, without having any previous experience or coding skills. You can choose from 180+ beautifully designed and fully functional elements that in combination with the drag and drop builder will create you a gorgeous websitE.
Codester is an excellent marketplace which is quickly growing from one month to another. Web designers, developers and everyone looking to buy PHP scripts, app templates, website themes and much more. If you are looking for an additional income, you can sell your products on Codester, they are not requesting your products.
MeridianThemes is a powerful WordPress theme developer which is creating pixel-perfect, free and premium templates. All of their products are having gorgeous designs, load extremely fast and look great on any device your website visitors may have.
uiCookies is popular for delivering awesome free themes which can be easily fully customized to fit any project. Frame is a free one-page theme with a modern and clean design, fully packed with features and options that are giving this theme a premium touch.
FreelanceLogoDesign is a platform which lets graphic designers compete to send their best logo design. Enter a simple logo design brief and pay $19, the platform will assign 3 designers which will be creating 6 custom logo concepts for you. You will receive the logos in less than 6o minutes and after you pick the one you like, you will pay $49 for the copyright.
Working on all websites and all e-Commerce platforms, MailMunch is a popular way to increase conversions on your website. Create beautiful opt-in forms without writing a single line of code, starting from the professional included themes.
WhatFontIs will quickly identify the fonts you are looking for from any URL or image which you will upload. What is even greater to this platform is the fact that you will receive free and premium alternatives, most of the times saving you money. Start using it, you will find it very useful.
Pixpa is a powerful and popular portfolio website builder, packed with an excellent drag and drop builder, beautifully designed themes and much more. You don’t need any coding experience or previous experience, anybody will obtain great results.
Try it for free for 15 days.
SuperbWebsiteBuilders is a decent choice for users, who intend to find the best website builder to complete particular tasks. The website provides the reviews of the top rated website builders, their characteristics, and list of pros and cons users should know when selecting the best platform. Due to the professional approach of Howard Steele, the owner and the chief editor of the website, it has become a decent information source for professional web designers and newbies.
uKit is a robust website builder for business owners that have an edge over other site-building solutions due to its solid functionality and easy to use interface. The brings over 350 designer-made themes encompassing 38 business categories to suit just any kind of website. The platform offers everything you might require to set up your own professional digital presence and go online in a matter of minutes.
uCalc.pro is a free online service that lets you create a custom embeddable calculator in a matter of minutes. Start by choosing a template (there’s a good collection of modern, designer made layouts), add the input fields you want and you’re all set to go live. Your visitors will be able to calculate mortgage, loan payments, interest rates and much more directly on your website.
20 .IM XPRS
IM XPRS is a decent choice when it comes to selecting a functional and affordable website builder. This cloud-based system is free, yet it offers a broad spectrum of web design options and tools needed to create websites of diverse specialization and complexity level. The service comes with the Polydoms technology, responsive templates subdivided into thematic categories, design customization tools, White Label solution and WYSIWYG visual editor that ensures intuitive, quick and safe web building process.
Looking for a complete, simple to use and budget-friendly invoicing platform? InvoiceBerry is what you are looking for, is a perfect fit for small companies and freelancers. Sending fully customized invoices takes less than 60 seconds and the platform can also help you track expenses and payments, create reports and much more.
InvoiceBerry is having a free forever plan, start with that one and you can upgrade anytime.
Being used by more than 1,500 companies, SalesMate is a smart and powerful CRM software that will help you better organize your work, have a clear pipeline, increase email productivity and much more. Try it for free for a period of 15 days and check all the features and options that SalesMate is having.
Ucraft is a cloud website builder, which is in demand with experienced web developers and newbies, who are just making their first steps in the web design niche. The system allows creating and customizing websites of different types. There is even a Free Landing Page Creator, which makes to possible to build landing pages in minutes and connect them to any domains you wish or get the new one from the system in no time. It’s also possible to launch a functional web store here due to the integrated eCommerce engine the system can boast.
Controlio is a professional computer and internet monitoring software which is loaded with tens of great features and options. You can have live surveillance, continuous screen recording and much more. Prices start from $7.99 per user per month.
EvergreenFeed is a great way to put on autopilot your social media channels. This way you will save a couple of hours every week, hours which may bring you money by taking new projects. They are having a free plan which you should start with.
With Uncode you can take the building of an website using WordPress to the next level. It has a tailored version of the popular Visual Composer with advanced techniques, massive features and options. Everything you can thing for is included in Uncode.
RumbleTalk is a popular choice to implement a web chat to any website. Using this webchat you can discuss with your website visitors but many other things can also be achieved. Audio and video calls can be made, image, video and youtube sharing and even more.
Up to 5 seats and 1 room is free. Try it.
Whenever you are looking to get things done quick while having excellent results, any of the above web resources are great options. Some of them are having free trials or even free forever plans, testing them is easy and free of cost.
As a final note, these web tools and services were manually selected and represent the best 26 web resources in the first quarter of 2018.
Please share your opinions and tell us what web tools you are using.
It is that time of the year again where the days will be warm and full of outdoor fun. This means that you should prepare to look sharp while on your summer escapades. Summer fashion has evolved a lot over the years but some trends just never really die out. Being fashionable is not a matter of just wearing the latest and greatest.
It is a matter of being unique, creative and confident with what you are wearing. You might probably think looking fashionable is an arduous feat to achieve but it is not. You only need a few style tips and you are good to go. Here are some great color and style trends in summer for men in 2018.
Checks are constantly around at all times whether it is summer or winter. Checked clothing is thus one of the most fashionable choices for men. You should nevertheless not wear these clothes haphazardly. Wearing the wrong kind of checks can result in a clownish look. Generally when selecting a great checked shirt or jacket, you should go for one that has intricate designs. A checked clothing that has a complex set of checks is much more obscure compared to the simple checked shirts or jackets.
Stripe suits are very looked down upon by most men. This is because they can be difficult to look trendy with. The great thing about the suits though is that they can look really good when they are worn the right way. Stripe suits are perfect when they are combined with the right type of shoes and jewelry. For summer, you can try rocking some thin stripes or thick stripes suits and also invest in a good watch if you do not have one. Stripe suits not only make you look sharp but they also help you stand out from the rest of the crowd. Your body size does not matter also as they can look great on anyone.
Another great trend you should look into is the biker accessories fashion. Biker accessories are not just worn by actual bikers only. The biker accessory world is getting pretty diverse and you can find almost any item you are looking for. You can wear a skull ring and other biker jewelry with just about anything and look fashionable.
As reported by Bikerringshop, most biker accessories are indeed not just fashionable but also functional. You should thus look into getting some biker accessories if you want to look trendy and unique this summer.
The 80's fashion scene was pretty iconic. Even today, clothing items that defined the eighties are still very fashionable. The light wash jeans, shades, and pastel colors are all great choices for summer. 80's fashion evolved over years and those who are brave enough to venture into this fashion trend in the modern day often end up looking ravishing. The most important issue when considering the 80's style in summer is not to overdo it. You can choose to wear clothes that are subtle but fabulous 80's fashion must-haves.
It is always refreshing to see that unique person who wears white from head to toe. Not only is choosing this color a sign of confidence but the clothes will work well for you in summer. White reflects heat and is thus the best choice if you want to remain comfortable throughout the day. You can accessorize white clothes with some simple jewelry for the perfect gentleman look. There are indeed also many different looks and styles you can achieve with white tees and white pants. Give this look a try if you want to look different this summer.
Finally, the printed tropical shirts are synonymous with summer. Most people choose the summer look with the printed shirt because it captures the high spirits of summer. You can wear these shirts with either shorts or pants and even throw in a hat and sunglasses. The main consideration you should make when wearing tropical print shirts is to not go for the usual style that is popular with most people. Do not opt for a baggy shirt for instance. Also, you can go for a long-sleeved shirt as it is less common compared to short-sleeved shirts. This will make you stand out and look great.
Artistic pavements, also known as street art, street painting, and sidewalk art, or artistic performances designed to give an aesthetic look or design to the pavement. Examples of these fortunate pavements are subways, sidewalks, streets, recreational ground paths, and town squares with semi-permanent or completely impermanent drawings created using materials like chalk.
The art of modern artistic pavements can be traced back to Britain, where pavement artists were nearly all over the Kingdoms. Most of these artists in the late 19th century were earning their living as full-time pavement artists in major cities like London and Manchester. Today sites like SaveOnPaving.com have delved deeper into this trade by providing enthusiasts with insight about artistic pavements and their contribution towards aesthetic on our streets.
Screever is a British name given to pavement artist. The term originated from the Copperplate writing style, which often accompanied the pavement artists’ works since the early years.
Screevers works from time immemorial were often accompanied by proverbs and poems, political commentary, lessons on morality based on a particular period event. They produced a topical pictorial illustration of current events or trends and appealing to all people, the literate and the illiterate. This phenomenon explains the importance of art as a tool for educating masses or preserving the historical heritage as all can understand visual images. Most importantly, for Screevers to earn their living, they would also try and catch the eye of the elite in the community to attract their money offered as donations for their efforts.
These noble people have earned different titles across the world such as chalk artists, and a title street painter is mostly referred to in the USA and Madonnari in Italy because they are known to have recreated the images of the Madonna. In Germany they are called Strassenmajor; a title coined from two words, namely streets (straßen) and painters(mailer).
Madonnari traces their origin to the sixteenth century where they were mostly itinerant artists, who had come to Rome and other cities to work on the cathedrals. After completion of work, they needed another way to earn a living, and that is how they started recreating the paintings borrowed from the church on pavements. They would also travel to attend holy days and festivals held in various towns and provinces, participate in the festivities and make a living from impressed observers’ donations as a show of goodwill and approval of their artistic work. To make a living from onlookers who would offer coins to them if they approved of the artist's work. Madonnari mostly viewed as simple folk artists used to reproduce simple images using simple materials, e.g., coal, tiles, chalk, coal, and charcoal.
Street art has evolved from the 1700s to the 21st century where items of focus, the motivation behind the art and the generation of artists we have. It everywhere takes over walls of buildings in major towns and cities, covering the subways and the streets and painting the world too. It has evolved to be a more creative form of art.
The artistic pavement evolution began in 1973, where street painting began to be promoted across Italy through the formation of a two-day art festival starting in Grazie DI Curtatone, Mantua Province.
Kurt Wenner, world's most popular street artist and one of the proponents of modern day street art, In the 1980s, he practiced 3D pavement art. This art is referred to as anamorphic art or one-point perspective art too. It is an old technique, but put into work successfully in recent years, mainly through the use of computers. To see the image correctly, you have only to view it from a specific angle.
In the United States, the concept of impermanence has over the years been a problematic concept for art lovers to embrace. This notion can be blamed on the fact that ours is a materialistic culture where we don't believe or want to accept that an artist's work should wash away. One of the largest street painting events in the United States is the Lake Worth Street Painting Festival. It is usually held in Lake Worth, Florida and was started in 1994 attracting a record 100,000 visitors over a weekend.
Examples of great artistic pavements work in the US are; Leon Keer – At Chalk Festival in Sarasota, Florida, Street Art by Ron English in New York, USA, Yarn Bombing – R2D2 in Bellingham, Washington, USA, In Johnson City, TN, USA and Daddy Long Legs – In Seattle, USA among many others that are on your street and i haven't mentioned them.
World over decorative sidewalks has become a norm, but with a diverse approach from the olden days, e.g., use of 3D in the artwork. But we would do well to appreciate where this strange ritual originated. Looking at significant civilizations leaves us in awe as we ponder through the great works of art. In Portugal, artistic pavements ideas came from Rome. The work consists of using small flat pieces of stones that arranged in an image or pattern, just like a mosaic. Artisans first lay bedding of gravel on the well-compacted trench using argillaceous materials. The gravel helps accommodate the tessera stones that act like cement.
There are simple steps followed to get an excellent, complete work:
With few people wanting to stick to the kind of craftsmanship seen in Portugal and Italy, street art practice may be coming to an end. But there are people who are still saving this noble through integrating simpler ways of doing it in the past, and a new approach by use of anamorphosis concept also described as a Renaissance-era of artistic thought. Through this method, a deformed image, form and only appears in its correct shape when viewed from a specific position or in an unconventional way.
This method is called three-dimensional (3-D). In 3-D art uses two processes, namely additive where an artist creates a form using materials or subtractive process that removes materials from an already existing form.
Methods used by artists in the 3-D art are:
- This refers to any artwork attained through manipulation of materials resulting to a 3D object. Materials used are from plastic, glass, etc.
- Artists uses found, altered or manufactured objects and items to create a piece of art. This method has been used by Sculptor Debra Butterfield to come up with amazing pieces of art.
- This is a 3D concept that utilizes multiple facets from different mediums and takes the whole space to generate a beautiful piece of art. It can be either site-specific or generic. Installations and performance arts are complex and mainly used to addresses narrative ideas and above all aesthetics on a much higher scale compared to sculpture. Its origin can be traced to a period after world war during the Dada art movement.
- This is a distinct feature on pavements and streets mainly in the African-American neighborhoods.
A 3D street painting is called an anamorphic painting. Anamorphosis as an art technique brings awe and clamor on artwork because when used it distorts a picture in a way that you can only figure out what it is if you view it from a vantage point. 3D artistic pavement is a 2-dimensional artwork drawn on an actual sidewalk or street and gives the observer or viewer a 3-dimensional optical illusion if viewed from a particular angle or say perspective. It is a piece of beauty, an art masterpiece giving viewers an incredibly captivating, breathtaking and realistic feeling once they figure out the correct angle or position. The most common 2- dimensional models you will find if you visit SaveOnPaving.com of a 2-dimensional models are where the edges of the page are parallel to two of the three dimensions, and the third dimension is portrayed through diminishing size, overlapping, diminishing size and any other techniques that could bring about the perspective. It's interesting, right!!! Then why don't you try it out?
The world's great street artists like Julian Beaver, Kurt Wenner, Edgar Muller, Banksy, and Tracy Lee Stum have made a fortune through integrating traditional works of art with the modern order and making mind-blowing and world's most highly coveted works of art. Youths with artistic talent can indulge in this practice, and they will harness fulfillment, improve on their skills and not forget the fortune they can make from this talent. As they do street art they can also engage in commercial forms of art mainly in textiles, advertising, cultural fests, development of labels and logos and this is a fantastic way to earn a living. Thanks to the embracement of street art as part of the culture, it's now almost everywhere and indecent forms.
Art is part of us, intertwined with our lives and found in almost every aspect of humanity. It embodies creativity and catapults it to a higher level. Creativity, in turn, builds us into great geniuses, and now that is how life becomes fun and worthwhile. It captures moments of joy, sadness, happiness, a celebration not for the benefit of the people of today but for generations to come. Art does not fade away, and it is timeless and new with every day that dawn on us.
Art in modern society as was in the old culture has been a medium for expressing one's thoughts, and a means through which their beliefs manifest. Through this way of expression, I to the benefit of so many people within a society whose voices could not be heard. Artistic pavement is a platform for enriching an entire community through works of art. There are stress relievers, but none is better than a great piece of art. It manipulates human conscience by giving an individual some form of illusion, especially 3D art where one takes a journey to a fantasy world. The masses get lost in the moment, and phew, all stress is gone.
For artists, impermanent nature of street art enhances imagination, creativity in progress, the ability to see things and imagine things unseen before and mental growth through a move from simple to intricate works of art. Works of art will be all over today, in Escape rooms, Theatres, Movies, and Music. It is defining us as individuals, and it’s a tool for improving lives, making us better each day.
Artistic pavements are impermanent and legal. It is very distinct from graffiti which is more word based on street arts are a non-destructive image-based form of art. What happens when it rains? Art is more than a product; it is a form of creation too with each day bringing in a bolder, more creative piece of art compared to yesterday. So there is a tentative development of image and skill. It is ever work in progress, hence need for impermanence. After a piece of art is completed and audiences get an opportunity to admire it, then its purpose is served. If an artist has fully expressed him/ herself and the audience has observed creativity at its best, then the art getting washed away doesn't leave the artist with hard feelings.
Street art is a ritual and not a marketable commercial product for auctioning for a fixed value. The artistic worth of a piece of an artwork is not defined by how much profits it is worth making. Its impermanence nature means it’s just for aesthetic value not as a gain in capital markets. Kurt Wenner was saying the impermanent nature of art makes him feel like he has offered an offering and the ritual is complete. That's the beauty of street art.
Artistic pavement is enjoyable and a fulfilled process, but there is a lot of discomfort to the artist brought by nature, such as fatigue, scorching sun, extreme cold or heat, being treated to winds, rain, thirst and also being brutally treated by unapologetic city council workers. Bending over for long hours and concentrating too is quite a tedious process, but the outcome is rewarding.
Artistic pavement is an incredible experience as you figure out what beautiful and magnificent pieces of art can do to dull streets, street walls, sidewalks. Think of peace of mind and heart on onlookers, think about the heritage, the moral lessons you could pass through art. Honestly, it’s a ritual, and it's a fantastic experience that is both adventurous and great to pursue. You don't have to be a professional. It is an open party for anyone who believes they can do it.
In our previous blog post, we were talking about the importance of using certain colors, color theory and color psychology, as well as why some color combinations are more pleasant to the eye. Today, we will explore one of recent history's most famous example of how colors are used to communicate within an art piece.
A painting we are referring to is, of course, Mark Rothko's "Untitled (Yellow and Blue)", a piece of art which value reached $46.5 million at Sotheby's auction in New York. Painted in 1954, this art piece is called "unequivocal masterpiece" by Sotheby auction house.
“Untitled, (Yellow and Blue)”, by Mark Rothko as found on http://news.bitofnews.com/rothko-painting-yellow-and-blue-sold-for-46-5-million/
Significance of the work of Mark Rothko is his astonishing understanding of colors, beauty of the contrasts he used, as well as gradient of colors in his paintings. "Yellow and Blue" is particularly interesting for us, as it is a perfect example of the effect a good color complement achieves in the eye of the viewer, and remember the previous article - Marge Simpson and Joy (Inside Out) - their skin colors with the colors of their hair balances their characters and gives them visual personality.
Through oil paint on canvas, one could say Mark was speaking about his philosophy and psychology of his method. So, for "Yellow and Blue", we can now picture a character that he would describe, a personality. Given how yellow is the dominant, energetic color, blue is contributing to the painting by balancing it out, but not taking over anything that yellow was meant to tell us.
An example of gradient he used in his work - his "Orange, red, yellow" - has been sold for $86.9 million, which was the highest price ever for a piece for contemporary art. This piece, painted in 1961, shows the artists deep understanding of color meanings. Looking at the composition of the work, you can feel variety of emotions, just as you do when you look at the setting sun, which shades exactly he used for this piece of art.
Rothko's "Orange, red, yellow" as found on Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Orange,_Red,_Yellow.jpg
This famous and very expensive contemporary artist ended his life in 1970. His work has been auctioned and sold for billions of dollars years after his death. He is now labeled as one of the most successful artist of the 20th century, and maybe one of the artists who explained best the color philosophy. His communication is purely explained through colors, shapes are there to support the expression of shades and they are not interfering with the whole composition. A true color lover, we could say.
About the author
Nina Petrov is an activist, poet, performer and mathematician. She communicates with the world mostly through words, movement and equations, but sometimes also by speaking very loudly. The only truth she could say about herself is that she keeps changing every day, never stops learning and interacting with her surroundings.
I love designers. It’s a strong statement and I can shout it out in front of millions of people, probably WordCamp will be one of the best places to do it. They do a fantastic work in a very difficult, competitive environment.
There are many tools designers as well as developers should use in 2018. They should not need to start from zero to build any new project. Especially when it comes to a huge project like building a directory website, ListingPro got your back.
Also there are multipurpose WordPress themes which are excellent and website builders that are doing a great job.
Below we wrote about almost 30 web tools and services that are effective, fast and wallet-friendly.
With customers from over 170 countries, prizes as the No.1 Best Seller in 2017 and 5-stars support, ListingPro is absolutely the best WordPress directory website you can get. No additional plugins needed for the basic features and there is no need to have special knowledge. Anybody will benefit by having a ready to go package to launch its own directories like Yelp, Airbnb, Capterra and other directories. Some of the biggest names in the hospitality industry is using this solution.
Their website is super simple, yet packed with the most important info. You will find more than 30 case studies with real examples of directories built with ListingPro. The features page includes more than 40 important things that this WordPress theme can do for you.
If you are looking for a feature or design elements that is not available with the purchase, they do offer customization service, so reach out to their team for a free quote.
The pricing for the basic license is $69 only and you get everything you need. Launch your directory website and start monetizing right out-of-the-box.
Userfeel is an excellent usability website and mobile app test service that is different from A/B testing and heatmaps. Here you will get impressions from real life testers that you will use from the vast network created by Userfeel. You can even add your testers to the project. Testers can be selected from various criteria like age, gender, country, web experience and language.
Userfeel is great for website owners, it is used by web designers, web developers, internet marketers and web consultants who want to open their eyes to the real world of their site's or internet market's users. It’s a good service for pretty much anyone who wants to be sure that his website is offering its visitors the experience they want to have.
A great feature that is making Userfeel even more powerful is the fact that they are working with over 20,000 testers that speak 40 languages. You can test any website in any language and you can ask testers to provide comments in your language.
For $49, the price per desktop test session, you will get a video with voice comments, you will see the tester movement mouse and the written answers to the questions you have provided when launching the project.
Dealjumbo is a place where you can find exclusive deals for designers, developers, and pretty much all kind of web professionals. They offer incredible bundles for great prices. Their prices are awesome, the amount of money you save is remarkable and can help you big time in your projects. If you lower your costs you can lower the bid for a project and win it. Think about it.
On their website, you will find everything you are looking for: premium fonts, beautifully designed graphics and more. There is an on sale section and a freebies page, check both of them. You can download 1580+ free fonts & graphics. All comes with standard commercial license.
Forget everything you knew about building websites without skills and effort. Brizy is the best visual WordPress page builder on the market, transforming the user into a professional in an instant. Anybody can now create gorgeous websites that are a perfect fit for their needs and all of that in less than 1 hour.
The Brizy WordPress plugin comes with 150 excellent predesigned blocks, 4,000 icons, and options that are there for you but are not being put all in your face to complicate things. The interface is super simple to use and intuitive, being your close friend from minute 1.
Brizy is free, can be tested right now on their website and the pro version will be packed with even better things.
With almost 550,000 downloads, Deeezy is a major web design deals where web professionals will find awesome premium fonts, mockups, bundles and much more, everything is hugely discounted. You will get an extended license, that means you can use the items for unlimited commercial projects.
Check Deeezy and get free and premium fonts and graphics.
actiTIME is a powerful time tracking software loaded with strong features: simple time tracking, work scope management, project cost control, leave time management, time billing reports and others.
Create project scope, assign tasks to your team, record work hours and keep everything on track with the insightful data.
The 30 days trial lets you test all the features, try it.
Notism is a simple collaboration tool, yet very powerful, which includes video collaboration if needed. You can communicate via notes or sketches right on your uploaded work; share, review and sign-off visual content right where it makes sense and much more.
The price starts from $9 per month and it includes 5 projects, 5 collaborators, 10 archived projects and 2 GB space. Collaborate with easy, use Notism.
Goodie is a professional web development service which will get your website designed and coded by professionals from only $999. The results are outstanding, discuss with Goodie experts for your next project.
Codester is a huge marketplace where web professionals can buy and sell scripts, app templates, website themes, plugins, and graphics. Everything you need can be easily found on the website.
Always check the Flash sale section where items with huge discounts are being sold.
If you want to make an extra income, sell your items on Codester, they don’t request exclusivity over your products.
Designhooks is loaded with awesome free stuff for web designers and developers. The website is very well structured, items being easily found. There are PSD Mockups, Sketch, HTML templates, WordPress themes and more.
Come and get all you need, it’s free.
Uncode is a pixel-perfect WordPress multiuse theme which you can use to build unlimited websites. It is loaded with layouts, icons and all the features you can think of. The drag and drop Visual Composer will help you build stunning pages, you don’t need to write a single line of code.
Pixpa is a powerful portfolio website builder with integrated e-commerce. The drag-and-drop builder is making wonders in terms of ease of work and functionalities. Everybody can use it without having any coding skills or experience.
You can try it for free for a period of 15 days to test all the features.
Format is a stunning free website template that can be used to create your next portfolio website. It is a perfect fit for designer, web studios, and agencies, with a gorgeous design and useful features. Check the demo and use it in your projects.
Chasing customers to send the content is a demanding and time-consuming task. Content Snare can do that for you in a few steps so you can focus on the work. You create “requests’ with all the piece of information you need from the client, you set a due date and a follow-up schedule and the rest is being handled by Content Snare. When the customer will send the content, you will be immediately notified.
The pricing starts at $29 per month.
uSocial.pro is a convenient builder of “Like” and “Share” buttons for your website. More than one hundred button designs with hover effect and counters will help you find a perfect match for any page. uSocial buttons are mobile-friendly and make it possible for your followers to share interesting content with their friends through Viber, WhatsApp, Telegram and SMS in one tap.
Whenever you want a beautiful logo in seconds and you want a budget-friendly solution, Instant Logo Design is the perfect software to help you. You simply enter the business name and you will get several options to choose from. The pricing starts at $29.
uCalc.pro is a service for creating custom calculators that need no coding skills. You can use a ready-made calculator template or show your creativity and make it from scratch. uCalc has many benefits: convenient editor of calculator fields with various design settings, all kinds of available fields (text, number, checkbox, radio button), contact data collection, SMS and email notifications, PayPal invoices, and even more.
InkyDeals is a powerful name in the design deal industry, being loaded with awesome, hugely discounted items. There are great bundles to get, gorgeous graphics, WordPress and Photoshop items and much more.
Always check the free deals and Best Deals section, great stuff can be found also there.
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Crello is a powerful visual editor that you can use to create gorgeous graphics, everybody can be a designer with this tool. It is packed with 60 million photos, 12,000 templates, 33 design formats and 12,000 free photos and vectors. Try it.
MailMunch will help you convert your website visitors into customers, subscribers, and long-time readers. The powerful built-in editor will help you create and customize gorgeous forms that will attract your visitors and convert them.
Start with the free forever plan and upgrade it when needed. The premium plans start from $15 per month.
Elementor is the Number 1 WordPress page builder with more than 900,000 users. The builder is lighting fast and can be used with any template you have installed and even if you change the theme, your designs will stay in place.
Try it and you will never let it go.
Controlio will help you monitor employees PC activity from anywhere. You will have real-time surveillance, screen capture, key logging and you will always know what apps and websites are being used.
The software can be used for employee monitoring, insider threats, and productivity optimization. All of that can help any business to grow.
UpTimeRobot is a service that will check your website downtime every 5 minutes (free plan) or every 1 minute (premium plans starting from $4.5 per month, billed annually). You will be notified very fast via e-mail, SMS, Twitter, Slack, HipChat, Telegram, push and web-hooks.
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InvoiceBerry is an online invoicing software for small businesses, sole traders, and freelancers. Business owners can sign up within 2 minutes and start sending their first invoices to clients. The pricing starts at $15 per month.
If you’re looking to create custom vinyl stickers, labels, decals, or other sticky products to market your brand, StickerYou has you covered. You can print any size, shape, and order quantity with StickerYou. Our products are perfect to hand out at events or sell to make extra money.
Foxy.io is a powerful and complete cart and payment page. You can use it to sell physical products, digital products, subscriptions, donations, services, and more. It integrates with WordPress, Wix, Squarespace, Webflow, and anywhere you can add a link or embed html. Foxy.io supports more than 90 payment methods (ex: Stripe, Braintree, Authorize.net, Amazon Pay, Bitcoin, Apple Pay) and has powered billions of dollars in transactions for thousands of users all over the world. Be sure to check out their Success Stories page.
Pofo is a highly creative, modern, blazing fast and professionally built responsive multipurpose WordPress theme designed for use by creative individuals, teams, bloggers and agencies. Pofo features an outstanding selection of portfolio, blog and eCommerce design elements, and bundled with the popular and widely-used WPBakery page builder and Revolution Slider plugins.
RumbleTalk will help you add a web chat on your website without having any coding skills or previous experience. You can do it in a couple of minutes, offering your website visitors the possibility to quickly contact you. This can help increase the conversion rates while spending only a few bucks or even free (they have a free forever plan).
WrapPixel is offering great admin templates, UI Kits, Mega Bundles and even Freebies. Everything is handpicked, that’s why you will see that the quality of the products is outstanding. Check their portfolio.
The effect that each color has on us depends mostly on personal experience and association an individual has about the color. We already know that colors symbolize different abstracts from culture to culture, but on top of that, there is a personal psychological level which is a non reliable factor when we're choosing the brand color.
When we're thinking about branding, there is so much to consider depending on the product we're designing the brand for. True, a lot depends on the visual aspects of a brand, but we shouldn't forget everything else in order to make a harmonic holistic approach to the brand personality. Things such as the certain smell we use for the shop, texture, patterns, customer service, music. So besides what the color represents, we should think about whether it fits what we sell and does it match everything else in the brand?
The role color holds in the brand identity is to make it easily recognizable, which is of great importance to the consumerist brain. Another thing to consider is which colors our biggest competitors use and how can we help the customers make an easy differentiation between the companies. Although, this is not always the right way to go when creating a brand. For example, both Twitter and Facebook use the color blue, and they are both social networks. The reason behind the color they chose is in fact very practical - since using these platforms requires spending time looking at the screen, they chose the color which is most comfortable to the eye so their users can spend more time on the network.
To think like successful brands, we need to think about our consumers, and not about the colors themselves. First we need to know what kind of emotions we want our customers to feel when using our product or service. What do we provide for them? Comfort, pleasure, confidence, excitement?
There are five dimensions of brand personality: blue for honest, welcoming, sentimental and friendly feeling; red for exciting, bold, creative and independent; green for reliable, successful, confident and smart; purple for elite, feminine, pretty and sophisticated; yellow for tough, outgoing, strong.
What do you want your customers to feel when they buy what you sell? Find the dominant emotion and focus your brand around it - think about practical factors and how to match every aspect of the brand with the color you choose.
About the author
Nina Petrov is an activist, poet, performer and mathematician. She communicates with the world mostly through words, movement and equations, but sometimes also by speaking very loudly. The only truth she could say about herself is that she keeps changing every day, never stops learning and interacting with her surroundings.
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The dresses that you choose for yourself will either make or break your life. That is just the first step. The colours that you choose for your dresses becomes more important for you because of their integrated psychological importance.
The colour wheel can help you to understand the relationship between different colours. And it can help you to choose the right clothes for yourself.
Primary colours- primary colours include red, yellow and blue. You cannot mix other colours to get these colours. Every other colour is derived from these colours.
Secondary colours-these are the colours that you can get by mixing primary colours at different proportions. For example, if you mix red and yellow, you will get orange; if you mix blue and yellow, you will get green and if you mix red and blue, you will get violet. These are known as the secondary colours.
Tertiary colours- these are the colours that you get by mixing a primary colour with a secondary colour.
The colour of your clothes reveal a lot about your personality type. Depending on the colour you choose or avoid, it can reveal a lot about your personality. Your dressing is a form of personal expression and by wearing specific clothes you are sending out messages to the world. Now the question is- Are you sending the right messages?
Colours play a major role in our lives by influencing our moods and emotions. A colour can make you feel secure or feel uneasy. It may happen because even though you are consciously not aware of the symbolic meanings of some colours, your subconscious is very much knowledgeable about them and so you feel different feelings about different colours of your dresses. One colour may mean something to you and something different to someone else.
Black colours-you need to have the perfect black dress that is flattering to your body in your closet. Black is important for you because it symbolises extremes which means all or nothing. It can mean strength, power, elegance, sophistication and authority.
Blue colours- blue colour cools and soothes. If you are wearing a blue colour, it is sending out the masses that you are a creative, positive, peace loving, and loyal person. It will also symbolises that you live by your own rules. People who generally like blue are smart, have a quick wit and are independent. Do you like blue?
Brown colours- brown colours symbolise things that are solid and grounded because it is the colour of the earth. If you wear a brown, you are sending out the masses that you are stable, smart and dependable.
Grey colours- if you wear a grey most of the time, it may mean that you are indifferent, depressed and apathetic. It may mean that you lack self-confidence and you are suppressive.
Silver colours-if you like metabolic colours like silver, it means that you are not shy, you are adventurous, hip and are for anything.
Red colours- red colours can help you to stand out and grab the spotlight. It symbolises the life and it’s a colour of energy. It is very empowering and it can provide you with lots of confidence. It is also associated with sensuality, aggression, passion and boldness.
Orange colours- orange is the colour which makes you open for new possibilities. It is associated with creativeness, enthusiasm, good times, warmth and ambition. It will make you appear a positive, energising and engaging mood.
Pink colours- in general pink is associated with femininity. However, it does not mean that men cannot wear anything pink. If he is comfortable with both the masculine and feminine side of his personality, he can definitely wear a pink dress and rock it. It is associated with unconditional love and it reduces aggression.
Purple colours- purple is the colour of royalty and it is also a symbol of wealth. It can help you to send out the masses that you are rich both materially and spiritually. It may help you to mean that you have a rich inner life, you are artistic and creative and you also have great instincts about people.
Yellow colours- yellow makes you logical, happy, optimistic and cheerful. It can be overpowering at some times. It will help you by encouraging intelligence and inspiration.
Green colours- green colour is associated with generosity, healing and a rejuvenated state of mind. It is also closely associated with nature and money it is a calming colour. If you wear a green, it will convey the masses that you are charismatic and you also care for other people.
White colours- white means cleansing and new beginnings. It helps you to look fresh and bright. White is also associated with balance, higher money, purity and courage.
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From Milan to Milwaukee we're bringing all the best fashion colour ideas and inspirations together to help you design the right look, plan the perfect outfit or construct your new line- is what the fashion channel on ColourLovers is all about. And so you will find so many different some fashion colour ideas and inspirations at one place which you can use for your own creative and artistic designs, new product creation and construction of your new line. It will help you to find so many ideas about inspired cutting-edge fashion which is in an ahead of the trend.
It’s a tough world out there for freelance designers. You have to fight off agencies, other freelancers, and increasingly, design tools to get new clients.
Your skills and knowledge can only take you so far; to survive in this hostile, ultra-competitive environment, you need some business hustle and marketing chops.
This is where I come in. In this quick guide, I’ll share 3 tips and tactics you can use to explode your freelance career. Whether you’re a practicing freelancer or looking to start after getting inspired by ColourLovers, you’ll find these tactics more than handy:
Imagine that a client comes into an agency looking for a new website. Halfway through the project, he decides that the company’s current logo is too bland. So he asks the agency to design him a new one.
The trouble is, the agency has never offered logo design services before. But since it doesn’t want to turn away the client to a competitor, it happily agrees, even though it has no clue how it will actually deliver the logo.
This is where you can come in. As a freelance designer, you can “white label” your services to agencies.
White-labelling means that you’ll do the entire creative work, but the agency will take credit for it. In exchange, the agency will give you bulk work without having to deal with the problem of finding and serving clients.
For freelance designers, this is as good as it gets to a guaranteed income. If you can stick to the creative brief, agencies will love to offload their work to you. This is also a great way to build relationships and start creating your own agency.
Pricing services by the hour is standard practice in the creative industry. For agencies, it has its advantages – they can calculate costs easily, distribute resources across projects, and bill clients quickly.
For freelance designers, however, hourly billing isn’t always the best way to go. By exchanging your time for cash, you essentially limit your income. After all, you can only bill for a maximum of 24 hours in a day.
The solution? ‘Productize’ your services. This means moving away from hourly billing to a fixed-fee model.
In this model, you sell each service (such as logo design) for a fixed-fee. Clients also get a list of “features” with the service (such as 2 revisions or guaranteed 5-day deliver). This effectively turns your service into a ‘product’ that clients can purchase with the click of a button.
Productizing your services offers several benefits:
If you want to scale your income, productization should be high on your priority list.
Have you ever felt overwhelmed while running a project? Do you regularly lose track of key objectives? Do you struggle to juggle clients and change requests?
If yes, you might be suffering from project mismanagement syndrome.
So many freelancers fall into the trap of focusing so much on their creative craft that they completely neglect the project and business side of things. They use ad-hoc processes to break down complex projects, eyeball project estimates, and use email to keep track of open issues.
This might be fine when you’re working on tiny projects and small clients. But as your practice grows, you’ll realize that neglecting managerial best practices makes it impossible to run complex projects. In fact, you’ll even find that larger clients expect you to know the basics of project management.
While project management is a massive discipline in its own right (the PMP exam requires about 7,500+ hours of active project experience), here are a few things you should know:
Refer to this guide to project management to get started. You don’t have to know everything in it (you can skip ‘project management methodologies’, for instance), but even understanding the basics will help you stand out.
Being a freelance designer is difficult in this day and age. As much as you’d want to focus on your craft alone, you can’t ignore the importance of knowing business and project management tactics. Follow these three tips to take your freelance design business further than it’s ever gone before.
If there is anything most students dread even more than writing essays and term papers, it's giving an oral presentation. Almost nobody likes it and it can be very nerve-racking. You are being judged and critiqued in real time by both your professors and your classmates. It can make you feel like you're in a pressure cooker that's just about to blow.
The good news is that the anxiety and fear associated with giving an oral presentation doesn't need to cripple your performance or your chance to get a good grade. If you take the advice ahead and implement these seven ideas into the writing and delivery of your presentation, you'll do just fine.
#1 – Start With Good Writing
One of the advantages of presentations is that you don't have to be an expert essay writer or any kind of writing professional to stand out amongst your classmates. The language of a presentation is less formal, so you can write your script in a way that is more conversational than an academic paper. The freedom to do that should, in and of itself.
A well-drafted script, formatted like an essay or term paper, can help you get more comfortable with the information and its delivery. Start by drafting a comprehensive outline and build a script around that. It will help you organize your information and will decrease the likelihood of forgetting to include key details.
#2 – Study Your Draft
Once you have a solid draft written, read it over and over again. Resist the urge to make too many changes unless you spot some glaring errors or misinformation that needs to be revised. Getting familiar with the salient points in your script, along with the supporting details, will make it easier to transition to the next step.
#3 – Use Icons to Fortify Key Points
Remember that you are giving this presentation to a largely millennial audience that grew up on visuals as part of their overall communication style. Graphic interpretations of key concepts or those that accentuate your description or explanation of them will get you far. Make good use of icons in your visuals. They are a popular addition to many written conversations, so leverage them as powerful visual aids. Some great examples can be found here.
#4 – Make Good Use of Color in Your Visuals
Color is also a vital part of any visual presentation. Don't go the fast and easy route. Select templates and color schemes that accentuate the tone, mood, and feelings you are attempting to convey. Colorful visuals add an extra dimension to your presentation and can often go far toward clarifying key concepts or making your own thoughts and opinions clearer.
#5 – Use Your Personality to Your Advantage
Now comes the part where you need to deliver your presentation and you want that delivery to be as strong as possible. Stiff, practiced, monotone presentations are boring. They become interesting when the presenter adds his or her own personality to the delivery. Walk around, use your hands, use appropriate facial expressions. All of these things will help accentuate your message and keep your audience engaged.
#6 – “Um...” Don't Get Stuck
The curse of “um...” has taken down many a presenter. This is why you want to be as familiar as possible with your material and the structure of the presentation ahead of time. Silent pauses are much preferred to a nervous “um” so work those pauses in ahead of time.
#7 – Relax and Enjoy
Try to approach your presentation from an angle that personally interests you and organize the information in a way that is easy for you to understand. Doing so will boost your confidence along with the quality of your presentation. Don't try to impress with lofty details or ideas that are beyond the scope of the class. Stick with what you know and are being taught. It will earn huge points with your prof.
While we can't make the experience of giving a college presentation less scary, we hope that the above advice will help you at least feel more prepared when the time comes. Remember, out of all the things you'll be asked to write during your college career, this is actually one of the easiest so don't be daunted by the task. You've got this and we've got your back.
I’ve been working as a self-employed creative person for about 6 years. I say "creative person” because, even though for most of the time I worked as a graphic designer and illustrator - I had about 2-3 years when I also worked as a UI/UX designer for mobile apps and websites, which at the time seemed like a dream job for me. I know, you’re probably thinking it’s a big gap between designing apps and drawing things for a living, and you’re right, but I was always attracted to exploring different visual creative fields and I like how they can co-exist.
In all this time I’ve been working as a freelancer, which involves the whole package of finding clients, doing a briefing, planning a project, doing research and finally starting work on the actual designs. The process is pretty much the same for every new project I take, but of course it wasn’t always like this. Since I’m self taught, I didn’t always have a structure and I used to play it by the ear a lot back when I started, so I made many mistakes that in time helped me optimize the process I have now.
First of all, a little background. When I started, I had no experience as a designer, my background was in communication and a little marketing, so I had to learn Photoshop and Illustrator from scratch. It helped that I was always passionate about drawing, but not by much, since graphic design is pretty technical and I was very new to all of that. I also had to learn to find my first clients, deliver the work and get paid, even if I had no portfolio and nothing to show for my work. So I did the easiest thing at the time: started by using freelance platforms like Fiverr or Elance (now Upwork), asking for very little money (yes, I did logos for $5) and pitching my design skills to clients who had no idea who I was. It was hard work and the satisfaction of earning the first money on my own was incredible.
It took me a few months to become a decent designer and increase my fees, after which I started to find clients on my own, among my network. Ever since then, I never actively searched for design jobs, because I would always have people recommend me to other people or, once I got a little exposure on social media, I started receiving many emails from people who just happened to see my work and had a design proposal for me.
I would sometimes become so overwhelmed with the amount of work that came my way, that I would have to say no. That’s also when I learned another thing: as long as the demand for what you do is high, you can raise your prices and filter the projects you decide to take. I realized it's better for me to work on one big project that pays well, instead of working on 4-5 small projects that pay little money and take the same amount of energy as a big project, if not more.
So, after the first year in the business or so, I never had trouble finding clients. But I would say that I did two things from the very beginning, that I think helped me get clients in the long run:
Once a client approaches me for a job I’m interested in, the process usually goes like this: we have a first meeting where we both determine whether or not we can work together, and if everything goes well we exchange a few emails where I ask many questions, in order to create a brief and see what exactly my job will be. Based on that, I estimate the budget and I send them a quote. I usually like to work with project based fees as opposed to hourly rate, because I feel like the value of what I’m offering isn’t always about the hours I put in. Sometimes I might spend 3 hours to reach a concept, sometimes it might take me 20 hours, depending on the project. But the value for the client is always about the end results; and the amount of time I spend getting there isn’t always a good indicator of that value.
If the client is ok with the price, we sign the contract, I usually get an advance of 25% (or 50%, if it’s a smaller project) and I start working.
My favorite part, the creative one, usually starts later in the process. I first need to dig deeper into what the client needs. In my experience, there’s almost always a difference between what the client says they need and what they actually need. So it’s my job as a designer to do my homework and make sure I ask as many questions as possible in order to get the bigger picture.
If it’s a visual identity project, for example, there is a lot to figure out before I start to design. I usually start by doing research about the brand, get as much info as possible on their core values, their goals, how their customers perceive them vs. how they want to be perceived (many times there are surprises here), I do research on the competition etc. This is very useful in order to offer the client a real solution, other than just execute what they say they need.
Once I have everything clear, I usually start by defining the brand’s personality, along with the client, and creating a tone of voice for the brand, which are the base for everything that follows. All the designs, communication, vibe of the brand, everything relies on these things we define. Ideally, these should be done by an agency, if the client has one, but if they don’t, these are steps you shouldn’t skip, if you want to offer quality work that will last in time. Your client will appreciate you more for it.
Once we have this structure, it’s a lot easier coming up with a concept and creating the graphic standards around it. Because once you can define “who is the brand?”, “what is it like?”, “what adjectives you can attribute to it?” and other such questions often used in branding, it’s easy to come up with fonts, the color palette and so on. If the brand is formal and conservative, you go with a certain font and choice of colors (taking into account what services they offer, also). If the brand is playful, innovative and cheeky, you might choose a friendly font, you might use hand lettering, playful illustrations and so on.
So design has very much to do with context. This is why it’s always a red flag for me when a client says they want their logo in blue because it's their wife's favorite color. Or that they want something similar to someone else’s design (and send me a picture). I can always do that, it’s the easiest thing for me to execute and take the money, but I never do it, because: 1. they probably won’t be happy and will keep coming back for revisions, since that wasn’t what they “really” wanted; 2. because I love what I do and a big part of that is knowing that my work has real purpose.
Here’s a story on that subject. I once had a client who hired me to design his upcoming online teaching platform. When I asked him what kind of logo he wants, he told me he loves the Apple logo and wants something like that. Of course, my designer mind immediately went to the bitten apple symbol, used mainly on grey or black, with a super simple font assigned to the brand. I could do that. But was that what he really wanted? So I started asking question after question, trying to understand what exactly about the Apple logo he liked. Ten minutes later, I got to the conclusion that what he actually wanted was a brand that was "as respected and desired as Apple is". So what he wanted was not the logo, but rather the character of the brand, and he subconsciously associated that with the logo ?
This is why you need to ask questions beyond what the client claims they want.
Creating the logo and everything else involved usually starts once all this is made clear. And I usually put all this in a document and send it to the client to confirm.
Back when I started out, I would usually create 3-4 concepts of a logo and send them to the client to choose which one he liked best. Now, I prefer to work on just one concept, which I consider to be the best solution, and work from there. I always explain my point to the client and I always have objective arguments, so that they can make a decision taking into account my expertise. Many times, the client doesn’t agree with you, but when you explain it to them, they might change their mind and trust you more because of that.
When I pick a color palette, I start from all the above, but once I have it narrowed down to a few color ideas, I start looking for inspiration. I like using color palette websites (colourlovers.com has been my go to for years), but also Pinterest or Instagram accounts like @designseeds. Another favorite is Dribbble, where you can enter a color code and see all the combinations of colors used containing that one color (you can even filter according to the percentage of color present in each composition). It’s an amazing tool when you’re in search of ideas.
In this stage, I always like to create a moodboard of imagery that speaks to me, like a collage of color palettes, fonts, patterns, illustration styles and so on. They can be images I find on Pinterest, Instagram, photos I take on the street, images of other work I might have done before, anything that catches my eye. The purpose of this is to immerse myself in the atmosphere of the project and get a better idea of what I want to create. This moodboard, along with a list of keywords that are assigned to the brand, are the starting point to my design process.
Once I have the visual style ready and approved, I create a visual identity manual where I write down how everything should be used. Things like versions of the logo, dont’s of the logo with examples like: never stretch the logo, never place X version on a black background, never use the typeface without the symbol or whatever etc, so basically graphic rules. I state what the main font is, what the secondary font is (for both digital and print), what the color palette is (with all color codes), what is the minimum size for the logo in print and you should never make it smaller than that, what kind of imagery is associated with the brand (you might notice there are brands that always use sepia or black and white photos, or brands that always use photos from an up close angle, very detail focused) - all of this is stated in the brand manual.
You usually learn all these specifics over time and after doing many such projects, but it doesn’t hurt to take a look at other brands’ manuals and study how they do it (you can usually find them to download online, or if you have friends who work in advertising or print, they have easy access).
This is pretty much the whole creative process. Once all these rules are set (and verified, because you must be sure it all works together the way you designed it), I design all the materials needed. That’s usually divided in two: digital materials (website, social media etc) and print materials (which can vary from stationery to promotional materials or packaging). When I do print I always use a Pantone color code in order to check that the colors I pick are true (and even then, it depends on the type of paper they print it on, but that’s a long discussion). The deliverables can include editable files or not (depending on what we previously agreed on) and I like to use Dropbox to share them.
What is something I know now and wished I'd known before?
That the more time I put in improving the brief and narrowing down all the info, the more chances are that I will come up with a design that my client is happy with from the start - and therefore they won’t ask for many revisions, which I know is a nightmare for designers in the early stages of their careers. This is something that used to frustrate me a lot too, and sometimes I felt like the client is capricious and can’t make up his mind.
The truth is, if you communicate well and you spend time listening and asking questions, you will more likely be on the same page with your client. I used to be afraid to do that, because I thought if I asked too many questions they will lose patience and become annoyed. But on the contrary, they will end up trusting you more, because you help them define what they want. And right there is why they pay you their money, that’s the value you provide for them.
What do you think about Miruna's story? Did you learn something from her experience? Did she inspire you? Let us know in the comments below.
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