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February 26 2014


19 Attractive Fresh Adobe Photoshop Tutorials

Adobe Photoshop; bliss in the world of digital designing is the most powerful tool any graphics artist have in the arsenal of designing software. A mark of excellence, Photoshop itself is one of the most prominent image editing and graphic designing software around the world, let alone in the Adobe family. It is most popular platform for illustrations,image editing, retouching, manipulations, print promos and the long list of digital graphical possibilities goes on with Adobe Photoshop.

“Seeing is believing,” and that’s what Photoshop is best it. Photoshop enables digital artist with power of crafting the most perfected visual graphics ever.Trying your skills at it is a fun experience whereas pros are always checking out newer techniques to trademark their own skills to newer heights.
Trying to get one of those great Photoshop trick up your own sleeves? Then look no further as we have the Ultimate Collection of Fresh Adobe Photoshop Tutorials for another great start for beginners and a newer level to reach for pros. Enjoy learning!

The Ultimate Guide to Adjustment Layers Vibrance

In this tutorial,we will take a close look at the Vibrance Adjustment and will explain everything you need to know about it. Let’s get started!


Create a Middle-Earth Inspired Landscape in Photoshop

In this tutorial, we will show you how to create a lush and vibrant “Middle-Earth” inspired landscape in Photoshop. Let’s get started!


Create a Summer Inspired 3D Text Effect in Photoshop

In this tutorial, we will show you how to create a summer inspired 3D text effect. In the process, you will learn how to use Photoshop’s 3D features to create the basic text shape and then combine it with various images in order to achieve a desired result. Let’s get started!


Create 3D Rubber and Glass Text in Photoshop CS6

In this tutorial, we will explain how to use the vector editing and 3D capabilities of Photoshop to create rubber and glass 3D text. In the process, we will show you how to create the materials, modify the lighting, render the scene, and finally, how to enhance the color of the final result. Let’s get started!


Create an Earth Shattering Disaster Scene in Photoshop

In this tutorial, we will show you how to re-create that scene using a selection of stock photographs. Let’s get started!


How to Design an iPhone Music Player App Interface With Photoshop CS6

In this tutorial, we will show you how to use these new features to create an iPhone music player app interface in both the original iPhone resolution, as well as retina without having to repeat the same process for both designs. Let’s get started!


Create a Metallic 3D Logo With Photoshop and Filter Forge

In this tutorial,we will explain how to combine Photoshop CS6′s 3D tools with Filter Forge to create a metallic 3D logo that is built “Forge” tough. Let’s get started!


Create a Fantasy City Using Architectural Photographs

In this tutorial, we will show you how to create a fantasy city that is built on a rock structure, similar to Minas Tirith from “The Lord of the Rings.” In the process, you will learn several techniques to help you incorporate architectural photos into your artwork. Let’s get started!


How to Create Contemporary Abstract Background of Geometric Shapes in Adobe Photoshop CS6

In this tutorial,We will show you how to create an abstract compositions of colored geometric shapes. The technique is pretty simple and the whole tutorial can be done in less than one hour – though feel free to keep experimenting in order to create your own realisation. Layered PSD file included. Let’s get started!


3D Bubbly Text In Photoshop

In this tutorial, We will show you how that’s made using the 3D features in Photoshop CS6 Extended, or Photoshop CC. Using the Split Extrusion feature will allow you to edit each letter individually.


Make Your Own Minecraft Skin In Phtotoshop

In this tutorial we will show you how you can utilize Adjustment Layers to quickly edit game skins, such as the one used to change the appearance of your Minecraft characters.


Disneys Frozen Text Effect In Photoshop

In this tutorial you will learn how to create a disneys frozen text effect in photoshop.


Stained Old Paper Texture In Photoshop

In this tutorial we are going to be creating a stained, old paper texture, which almost looks like a ancient treasure map! All with just Layer Styles, a few filters, and a Layer Mask.


Mystical Mountains Photo Composition In Photoshop

In this tutorial you will learn how to create a mystical mountains photo composition in photoshop.


Turn Day Into Night in Photoshop

Turn day into night! Use the power of Adjustment Layers and Blending Options to turn a bright daytime image, into a semi-realistic nighttime image. While these settings may not give you 100% perfect results, you can use the same techniques on your images with a bit of tweaking.


Wood Text Effect In Photoshop

In this Photoshop tutorial, we are going to be creating a wood text effect using a simple texture, Layer Styles, Adjustment Layers, and blending methods.


Cholocate Text Effect In Photoshop For Valentines Day

In this tutorial you will learn how to create a chocolate text effect in photoshop for valentines day.


How to Create a Chalk Logo Effect in Photoshop

In this tutorial, we will show you how to apply a chalk effect to an illustration in Photoshop.This technique can be used on anything from a typographic illustration to a logo. Let’s get started!


The Blur Gallery In Photoshop CS6

In this tutorial,we will explain the differences between the three new blurs in the Blur Gallery that have been added to Photoshop CS6; Field Blur, Iris Blur, Tilt-Shift. Plus, if you’re running Photoshop CS6 13.1, available to Creative Cloud members, you can now apply these blurs to Smart Objects


February 24 2014


11 Inspiring Mobile App Websites

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I always like when I find beautiful and well designed mobile app websites. To me, delivering a beautiful site for an app shows that the designer/developer cares about its users and product, so much so that besides developing the app, they go the extra mile in promoting the app and spreading the word about it.

The websites that we’ve gathered here are inspiring for several reasons. They sport beutiful type, sleek navigation, shard icons, and ample whitespace. They are certainly worth checking out.

Note: We didn’t test the apps. This is only about the websites.

This Week

Reminders Reimagined. This Week is a task manager based on Reminders. Simply look through your tasks on List, Day, Week and Month views.

11 Inspiring Mobile App Websites


Taasky is the most beautiful task manager for iOS yet. It provides innovative features, unique and visually appealing design. Thanks to the priority task that you set you can truely focus on what’s most important. Taasky features editable colored lists so you’ll never get lost and always have everything under control.

11 Inspiring Mobile App Websites


Cook is the place to create and share your recipes. It’s your very own Cookbook for iPad, fill it with the food you love and share it with family, friends and the world!

11 Inspiring Mobile App Websites


Make travel planning as mobile as you are with the Airbnb iPhone App! Airbnb opens the door to the world’s most interesting places to stay and is the simplest way to earn money from your extra space. With over 450,000 listings in more than 34,000 cities, Airbnb connects you with the experience that’s right for you.

11 Inspiring Mobile App Websites


LittleBit helps you do ONE thing consistently until it’s a habit. That’s it. Most people try to change too much at once. They soon get overwhelmed and give up. By choosing one thing and doing a little bit each day, you will find that it’s easy to create whatever habit you want!

11 Inspiring Mobile App Websites


Frontback is a hot new camera app! Take a photo with the front camera, another with the back camera, and share them both in a single image. It’s magical, fast, and always free.

11 Inspiring Mobile App Websites


Stories from Facebook in a beautiful storytelling format.

11 Inspiring Mobile App Websites


Build a list of places you’d like to see and we’ll let you know the best time to go. See where your friends live and have been. Contact them to get the best recommendations or see if they’re up for dinner when you’re in town.

11 Inspiring Mobile App Websites


Heyday transforms the photos and videos on your iPhone into a beautiful journal, presenting you with a delightful way to rediscover your most important memories.

11 Inspiring Mobile App Websites is a family of apps designed to help you have a good day, every day: interesting, productive, well-balanced & fun.

11 Inspiring Mobile App Websites

Time Planner

TIME Planner is an activity planning app that brings diversity into your everyday life. It helps you organize and fill your day with tasks of different nature, covering the most significant categories such as Health, Home, Work, Rest, Study, and many more.

11 Inspiring Mobile App Websites

February 21 2014


15 Amazing Spot UV Business Cards

In this collection, we are showcasing a stunning example of spot UV printed business cards. We all know that how much importance business cards have no matter how small or large a business is. Furthermore, designing an appealing and professional looking business card is what they every businessman wants to get for his business. Though there are many trends that are being used in designing business cards but this time we are presenting some UV printed business cards.

We hope that you will like this collection and find these business cards useful and inspiring for you as well. Do share your comments with us via comment section below. Your comments are always more than welcome. Also, feel free to share this post with others.

Business Cards Spot UV Foil


Hidden Creative

Amazing Red Business Card Ideas

Studioish business cards

Pixelflow Design business card

Business card for Miracle Media inc.

Spot UV Silk Laminated Business Card

Spot UV Silk Business Card

Spot UV Business Cards

Coxx Events business cards

Elegant Spot UV Business Cards

Daniel Counsell

Hear Agency for Green Sky Media

Socialite London


February 18 2014


A Type Design Brief: What Is In It, And Why Does It Matter?


Type design is equal parts suffering and euphoria. It is a walk along a winding road that goes on for many weeks and months before it’s done. A type design brief is like a charter path: It asks you questions, and the answers will guide you to where you want to be.

It will not make the walk much shorter, but the chances of getting lost will be much lower. Below are six questions that will shape the typeface through its first moments of creation and serve as guiding principles through the various stages of the design.

1. What Is The Intended Function Of The Typeface?

A typeface is a group of symbols destined to be rendered as words. The purpose of all letters is to communicate a visual or linguistic message to you, the reader. Sometimes they tell a story in a novel, sometimes the news of the day. At times, they direct you on the highway, while other times they update you on what your friends are having for dinner.

A typeface is a bunch of drawings that come to life when used as text. The words and their context will differ, and, therefore, the function of the typeface will vary according to the intended usage. A typeface designed to shout news headlines at people rushing about to get to work will be different from a typeface designed to capture the delicacy of a French wine.

Deciding on the function of a typeface is the first question that needs to be answered in a design brief. It will be the principle that guides you (the reader and, here, a designer) to judge whether the design works. It is similar to deciding what to wear every morning. Are you going to the beach or the office? Are you going to a party or the gym?

The thing is, even the most gorgeous high heels are not suitable for a treadmill. In the course of designing, you might draw letterforms that look great but do not perform well when put to use. If you’ve already decided on the intended function of the typeface, then the dilemma of choice is less scary.

Gebran2005 is a newspaper headline typeface meant to have a bold and strong visual presence. (View large version)

2. In What Sort Of Media Will It Be Used?

There was a time when all books were printed, and the main use of type was either for text or display. Today, we have added one word that modifies how we read and how we design typefaces: text or display, and where? The nature of ink, paper and the pressure needed to imprint the former onto the latter is very different from the nature of the light emitted from a glowing screen.

The way this affects a design is either subtle or pronounced, depending on how small the text size is and how high the resolution of the screen is. In either case, one needs to know whether the typeface is to be read in print, on screen or both.

Another qualifier quickly presents itself: and in which country? There are regional variations in typographic trends and visual language. Some typefaces are meant to be universal in appeal, and some dedicated to particular regions. Knowing where it will come to life will help you to design a more robust typeface.

Neue Helvetica Arabic for SKY was custom modified to be used in SKY News Arabia’s TV broadcasts and websites. The height of the font has been restricted in order not to require a tall space. (View large version)

3. What Language Does It Speak?

For many years now, typefaces have been conceived to speak in many different scripts and languages. Some design concepts are quite difficult to translate across script systems. With this in mind, map out your character set in order to plan how the design will extend across various scripts. This is also important for managing time, projecting costs (for the client) and collaborating with other designers.

SST was designed as the corporate typeface for Sony, and it supports several scripts, including Latin, Greek, Cyrillic, Arabic, Thai and Japanese. (SST Arabic by Nadine Chahine, and SST Latin by Akira Kobayashi.) (View large version)

4. What Personality Does It Convey?

If the typeface were a person, who would it be? Would it be male or female? Young or old? Hip or conservative? Sometimes it’s not about the personality, but rather the behavior. Formal or informal? Relaxed or tense? And sometimes it’s about the voice. Loud or soft? Confident or shy?

Determining these traits will help you to visualize the kind of impact the typeface should have, and these are usually connected to function. A typeface meant for newspaper headlines will be loud and confident, rather than shy and soft.

Baraem is the corporate typeface of Baraem TV, targeted at children between the ages of 3 and 6. It’s personality is fun, informal and childlike. (View large version)

5. What Design Characteristics Are Needed Or Desired?

Finally, it is time to talk about the design. Does the intended function call for a serif or sans serif? A handwriting script or all-caps wood blocks? High contrast or mono-linear?

Starting with these questions and staying within the realm of curves and outlines is possible, but a typeface that is strongly tied to a particular function or environment has a better chance of transcending the boundaries of black and white and representing more than just letters and words.

Afandem Dynamic’s is intended as a full-fledged text face in the style of Ottoman Naskh calligraphy. (View large version)

6. Which Calligraphic Or Typographic Style Are You Referencing?

This is where the design engine starts running. If you are designing a sans serif, will it be a humanist or grotesque? Each style has its own conventions of structure, proportion and modulation of strokes.

A typeface is like the human body. The skeleton is the structure underlying the letters. You will see it by drawing a line in the middle of the inner and outer edges. The structure conveys proportion and movement: fast or slow, energetic or relaxed, wide or narrow.

Palatino Arabic and Palatino Sans Arabic have the same skeleton, but the modulation is different. (View large version)

Then you have the flesh. This is the weight around the skeleton. Where you put the thins and thicks will largely be determined by the tool you use to trace the skeleton. Now that you almost have a full body, you must think of the head and feet. Will you have serifs, or do you prefer flats? This is where the design brief splits from a single path into many. If you were to present the first five questions to five different designers, you would likely get different answers to the sixth question and, by extension, different designs.

As such, the sixth question is more of a transitional phase between the conceptual definition of the typeface (i.e. what it is supposed to do and represent) and what it will actually look like.

This is when the real fun begins.

Note: All typefaces included this article were designed by Dr. Nadine Chahine herself.

(al, il)

© Nadine Chahine for Smashing Magazine, 2014.

February 17 2014


45 Fresh And Free Web User Interface Photoshop Files

PSD files can be a great time saver for the web designers as they allow them to create design quickly without requiring them to design from the scratch. In this compilation, we are listing 45 free to download and fresh web user interface PSD files for the designers. All the PSD files are completely editable to match your requirements.

We hope that you will find these fresh and free web user interface PSD files helpful for you and that these web user interface PSD files will help you in creating effective web user interfaces for your clients. We know that for designers what else could be the best than having such fundamental design element available in ready-to-use format. Do let us know what you think about this compilation. Feel free to share your opinions and comments with us via comment section below.

Thallium UI Kit

Blog/Magazine UI Kit

Social App Interface

UI Kit

Voice Search Interface

Simple UI Kit

Vanilla Cream Web Kit

Smoothberry UI

City Break UI Kit

Pizza UI Kit

Flat Browser Interface

Flat UI Kit

Web & App UI Kit

Touch50px UI Kit

Crisp Notifications

Hotel Reservation Widget Interface

Login Modal Interface

Paper Stack Login Form

Simple Shopping Cart Checkout Widget

Flat UI Kit

Blue Milk UI Kit

MoonLight DarkBlue UI Kit

Minimal UI Kit

BlueLove UI Kit v1

Linked UI Button

Origin UI Kit

Flat Braun UI (.psd)

Widget Music Player(PSD)

Singolo: Single Page Website

Buy Now Button

Facebook UI

Flat UI Kit for Sketch

Dark UI Kit

Flat Blog UI Kit

Ui Kit (Metro)

Dark UI Kit

Caramel Freebie

iOS 7 UI Kit

The Bricks MASSIVE UI Kit

Wood UI Kit

Free download: Flat / Skeuomorphic UI kit

Password Generator UI

Knóbz UI Kit

Impressionist UI Kit

Flat Login and Register Form

Glass Buttons


11 Incredibly Inspiring Service & App Websites

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A lot of times, services and app websites are a little bit neglected by designers, and this is why finding a well designed service/app site can be a challenge. But if you really dig around, you can find something inspiring, like the ones we will show here today.

From good use of images and type, to videos and navigation, these websites are good examples that you need to deliver a good webpage to present your service or application to attract users. Remember that the user needs to understand what you are offering. So make sure people understand your product/idea and have all the info they need, otherwise you may loose users.


Schedule your hours, and you’ll spend no time tracking them. You’re already planning – whether it’s weekly, daily, or even just a few hours ahead. Move your schedule to Timely, and you will be logging hours simultaneously.

11 Inspiring Service & App Websites


11 Inspiring Service & App Websites


Gain deep, actionable insights in real-time from Localytics, the leading and most powerful app analytics platform.

11 Inspiring Service & App Websites


The best way to have an impact online is to create and share great content. Klout helps you do exactly that. Klout helps people who want to be great at social media.

11 Inspiring Service & App Websites

Inside Travel Guides

We find local writers to offer tips and advice to help you explore their hometowns. Our guides are designed to be used on the go. With maps and complete three-day itineraries, you’ll have unique adventures at your fingertips.

11 Inspiring Service & App Websites


Loomideck delivers: we just simplified the way you can easily communicate, share, collect and use information within your team. Moreover, Loomideck helps you to collaborate more effectively while working on specific goals and projects.

11 Inspiring Service & App Websites


Say goodbye to endorsing, liking and ‘working on your profile’. Just carry on being awesome at what you do and WorkFu will automatically recognise your core skills and strengths, and proudly show it off on your profile.

11 Inspiring Service & App Websites

Peek Calendar

More than just a calendar.

11 Inspiring Service & App Websites

Media Temple

11 Inspiring Service & App Websites


Send and Sign Docs, Fast and Easy. PandaDoc integrates with your CRM and Google Apps, includes industry-standard templates, and lets you increase productivity and close deals quickly, all on the go.

11 Inspiring Service & App Websites


The easiest way to create, share, and discover beautiful stories. Storehouse makes laying out your content so easy that anybody can create beautiful stories.

11 Inspiring Service & App Websites


February 14 2014


12 Creative Websites Using Office Stationery In Designs

Today, we present an interesting and inspiring showcase of 15 websites that demonstrate the effective and creative use of office stationery in the website design. Creating an engaging website design requires loads of brainstorming and a designer has to come up with a unique concept that not only is aesthetically beautiful but also solve the purpose of creating a website at the same time. Using the office stationery in a website design is also one of the most appreciated styling techniques. Keeping this in mind, we thought to create an interesting and inspiring collection of some website designs.

In this write up, we have collected 15 most eye-catching and attention grabbing websites in this genre. Here is the full collection without any further ado. We hope that you will like this collection and find these website designs inspiring for you.

Dann Whittaker Creative





Games For Her By You





Catalyst Studios

Doodle Friendzy


15 Bumper Stickers to Print and Peel

Once I saw a bumper sticker that says,

There’s no place like

Bumper stickers are very good means of relieving stress in the road. It takes our minds away from the pressure of work, traffic and the seemingly endless string of daily mishaps in life. Putting them in your car somehow helps those behind you. Somehow, you’re telling them a good joke and subtly whispering, “Read and laugh with this one instead of hitting my car from behind.”

Since one of our fundamental goals is to promote world peace (or should I say, road peace), 1WD is giving you 15 bumper stickers! We hope that you have fun with them and share them by putting them on your car. You’d do a great help, swear!

BAZINGA betaj BIG FONTS DRIVE end eyedropper ie kill MAC PLEASE psd SHIFTj stoplight type web designer on board web


Having great and witty bumper stickers make you cool in the road, in both contexts of the road. Most people get impressed or chuckle with your bumper stickers.  Aside from that, it also makes you cool on the road. Whenever another driver sees your bumper stickers while he’s at the verge of hitting your car, he will stop those plans and have a good laugh. Who knows, you might even make a friend out of that! So print them now!


February 13 2014


A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

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With the lowering cost of large scale web hosting and equipment, and the increasing number of people with access to high speed broadband, it’s becoming easier for people to launch their own side projects and startups. But when a brand new business launches, it almost always faces extremely stiff competition. At the same time, people have become more and more used to well designed products and services – so for a brand new startup to compete, it needs to look good as well as work well.

In the world of startups, first impressions count – if you can’t entice a visitor into staying and reading more about your business the first time they see you, it’s unlikely that they’ll return. Startups that do well tend to have a focus on great aesthetics, as well as on a great product. This often translates across everything they work on – a beautiful product design, a beautifully designed interface, a gorgeous landing page and a creative and interesting logo for their new startup.

We’ve brought together a showcase of creatively designed, thoughtful and beautiful startup logos to give you some inspiration for your next logo design project.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos helps businesses run their own IRC channels without worrying about installation and archiving, and is designed mainly for developers. Grove’s logo is simple, instantly recognisable and the minimalist triangles within the brand mark hints at a forest, while the mark also forms a speech bubble.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

Airbnb allows people to rent out their apartments, houses and flats on a nightly basis, and is a great and quirky alternative to using a hotel. Airbnb was so named because it was originally meant for renting airbeds, and so the logo’s typeface is bubbly and appears soft, and is always surrounded by a hint of drop-shadow that makes it appear to “lift” off the page slightly.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

Adioso is a flight search engine that allows people to find flights by searching using natural language, like “flights to New York in November” or “Seattle to Anywhere”. Adioso’s logo includes a simple and irreverent reference to what they do, by including a paper aeroplane lazily drifting past the design.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

Memsql provides businesses with a database stored in the cloud, and was founded by a former Facebook engineer. Memsql’s main selling point is that it’s ultrafast and can access huge amounts of data extremely quickly. Memsql’s logo is easy to recognise and isn’t too complex – and it aims to show off one of the biggest benefits of the software, speed. The brand mark shows a spinning circle, and gives off the impression that it’s moving fast.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos is a browser extension that shows you who works at the company that you’re checking out. When you land on a web page, it checks LinkedIn to see who works there and then tells you who you know. It’s brand mark plays on the W of “”, and is clean, minimalist and neatly contained within the circle.


Dropbox is an extremely popular file storing and sharing service that aims to do away with USB flash drives, or awkwardly emailing files to yourself. The logo is simple, beautiful and instantly recognisable.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

Kissmetrics is a web analytics company that aims to show businesses simple, actionable insights from their data. Kissmetrics have given their logo some personality by surrounding the brightly coloured bar graph within a heart shape – a subtle indication that you’ll love working with your analytics data using the software.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

Jelly is the new startup from Biz Stone, who cofounded Twitter. Jelly is a Q&A app designed for mobile devices, and aims to help people help each other. The logo remains simple, flat and minimalist – but is instantly recognisable as the brand’s mascot: a jellyfish.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

Highlight is a fun social iPhone app that uses GPS to tell you if you were near other Highlight users, and tells you more about them. Highlight’s logo design is certainly controversial – it might not be the most attractive to look at (and you may not be able to look at it for long), but the layered grades of colour do get people talking.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

GiftRocket is a service that allows people to give and get gift cards for anywhere, using just their mobile phone. GiftRocket’s logo is friendly and full of personality and fun, and the brand mark – a rocket with a bow around it – perfectly sums up the name “GiftRocket”.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

Chefs Feed is a mobile app that rates restaurants and the dishes they serve, and the reviews all come from professional chefs themselves. The Chefs Feed logo shows a chef apron that’s been hung up, indicating that they’ve taken the night off to eat elsewhere.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

Flipboard is an iPhone and iPad app that takes your RSS feeds, Facebook and Twitter accounts and turns them into a beautifully presented interactive magazine, automatically. The Flipboard “F” is placed front and centre here, and varying shades of opacity are used to imply that parts of the logo design have been folded over – much like it’s possible to do with the actual Flipboard app.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

TaskRabbit is a service that provides you with a personal assistant to help you with anything you need doing – like putting up Ikea furniture, fetching coffee or doing your grocery shopping. TaskRabbit’s logo introduces a mascot to help give the brand some personality, and the mascot’s stance indicates that it’s moving fast – a hint that tasks carried out on TaskRabbit are quick.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

Optimizely makes it easier and quicker for companies to implement simple and effective split testing for their landing pages. Optimizely’s logo uses a heavily stylised “O”, with a dart forming out of it. This partly gives the impression of speed, and also partly implies that the software can pinpoint improvements to a finer detail.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

Sprintly is a beautifully designed, easy to use project management tool that’s designed to fit in well with developer workflows. Sprintly uses a beautiful, muted colour palette with a bright red running figure, which stands out despite being small.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

Grooveshark is a free service that let’s you stream music from your favourite bands and artists over the Internet, create your own playlists and store your favourites. Grooveshark’s brand mark is clean, minimalist and simple – the shark fin is clearly visible without being tacky.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

Plair allows you to watch TV, video and films via a special USB dongle, streamed directly from their service. Plair’s logo is a playful nod towards the shape of the hardware they use (which looks a bit like a dolphin’s fin), while the negative space of the logo forms a “play” button.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

ElasticSales is a service that rents out salespeople to other businesses on-demand, and is designed to help get leads for other startups as they grow. The logo for elastic features a brand mark that almost resembles a ball of elastic bands – the bright, colourful mark stands out against the more professional, clean and heavily kerned “elastic” typeface.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

BufferBox provides pick-up centres for packages ordered online, so instead of having your package delivered to your home (where you could potentially miss it), it’s instead delivered to a BufferBox in a popular location where it can be collected at your leisure. The logo choice for BufferBox is simple and professional, but gives a hint as to what the service does – by partly enclosing the latter part of the type in a box, and using their trademark light green.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

Hipmunk is a flight search engine that aims to take the agony out of finding a flight. Instead of showing a typical list of search results, it shows a beautiful, intuitive and easy to understand selection of options. Hipmunk has gone out of it’s way to inject personality and fun into their logo, by using a mascot of a chipmunk wearing aviator goggles. The Hipmunk mascot is one of the things that’s most talked about the company, and helps them stand out against more professional, overly corporate rivals.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

Vayable offers unusual and quirky adventure holidays, including interesting experiences provided by local tour guides. Vayable’s logo takes the famous pin icon (indicating a location or place), and doubles it up to form a heart shape, which implies that you’re about to love your holiday. The two location markers also help to suggest that you won’t be alone on your holiday, as there’ll be a Vayable guide there too.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

Github is a repository for code, making it easy and efficient for multiple developers to all work on the same project and contribute to open source code. Github, like Hipmunk, have chosen to add some friendly, quirky personality to their brand by using a mascot – in this case the Octocat. It’s unusual and quirky appearance is a bold move, but it definitely helps to make the brand memorable.

A Showcase of Creative Startup Logos

ZeroCater makes it easy to book large lunch orders and have them delivered to your office. ZeroCater’s logo includes an origami crane made out of a napkin, a subtle reference to food service and creativity. The mark itself is beautifully designed, and – if the company became well known enough – could become recognisable even if the words “ZeroCater” weren’t included next to it.

Are there any creative, interesting and inspiring startup logos that you’d like to share? Please do let us know in the comments.

February 12 2014


Why Being a Web Designer Who Codes Is Way Cooler

Is it important that web designers need to know how to code?What are the advantages of the web designer who codes?  The term “web designer” is a subjective matter. Many believe this person is responsible for doing web layouts in Photoshop while others think of him or her as the one who does the HTML markup.

In the field of web development, there are arguments and opinions whether a web designer should know how to code or this person should just focus on his/her craft by creating quality web design layouts.

Everyone has his or her opinion about it and there are probably a million different scenarios and experiences that might make each theory or opinion true.

When I first started in web design, I really don’t know how to code. I was clueless about HTML or CSS. All I knew was to create web page layouts and align elements in Photoshop. Then one day, it hit me: I realized my curiosity had grown stronger as I had seen a lot of articles and blog posts written about how to really get into the code. I began wondering how these geek guys do these beautiful websites.


So I jumped in front of my computer and searched for good tutorials to get started on how to code. To my disappointment, most of the articles I found only offered the basic knowledge such as how to use H1, H2, anchor tags and so on. Then one year later, I found one guy who trained me and turned me into at least a newbie web designer and the rest is history.

This is my own experience; yours might be similar or entirely different. But, admit it, what you don’t know is bound to hold you back from learning.

Yes! You heard it right. I know my statement might cause more than a few good and bad reactions. Some of you might look at me now frustrated and angry. Before you pass your judgement, I encourage you to read this and understand as I talk about why I think that web designers should learn how to code.

What’s holding web designers back in learning how to code?

Before we dig into the reasons why web designers should learn how to code, let’s check first what are the reasons why some web designers just want to focus on designing. Below are the main reasons that hinder a web designer from learning to code.

1. They enjoy graphics more than codes. Some web designers tend to focus on their artwork and illustrations and have more passion on the creative aspect of the website. They love to create stunning web layouts by choosing the right fonts, color, images and icons, but don’t want to deal with the coding aspect to make their graphics alive and real.

2. No time to spend for learning. Several web designers find it difficult to learn coding while others can’t keep up with a fast pace of development. They think that if they spend time to learn coding, they might be left behind when trending design concepts are being talked about. They believe will not be able to improve their creative skills.

3. They think it’s hard. Some web designers think that they would suck at it that’s why they became afraid to try. Learning to code is a process just like a flower takes time to bloom.

Why web designers should learn how to code

Now that we know what hinders a web designer from learning to code, let’s now jump on why a web designer should learn coding.

1. Flexible roles for each project. If a designer knows how to code, he can easily change roles with a web developer. Developers can be web designers too and if a web designer knows how to code, he can also work on the coding aspect too. Since the two can switch roles, both are making the process more flexible and efficient.

2. Fast and efficient delivery of projects. It would make a lot faster to finish a project if a web designer knows how to code it. For instance, when a web designer creates a mock-up in Photoshop, he can easily cut the images and code the markup. The web developer then can focus more on the complex issues.

3. Efficient technical communication. If a designer knows how to code, he can easily interact with the web developer and talk about codes. In that case, the designer will be able to help the developer with minor bugs and updates on the codes of the site.This will make the team more efficient, saving more time, thus, delivering the projects on time.

4. It’s not a rocket science- it can be learned. When I started learning how to code, I was thinking that I was not born for it but later, I found it exciting and enjoying. Learning to code is really not easy but it’s also not that hard. Everyone can learn it.

5. The key to the next level. When you’re learning how to code, you begin to think logically. This would lead you to learn more coding languages and techniques since you already have an experience on how to code. Eventually, you may learn the skills the web developer has.

Curiosity: Key to Learning

Based on my experience, it all started when I got curious on how to code. Being curious made me search and look for tutorials that led me to learning. I love what Walt Disney once said: “When you’re curious, you find lots of interesting things to do.” Exactly true!

The power of curiosity makes everything more enjoyable to learn. Start being curious before it’s too late.

February 11 2014


High Resolution Painted Wood Textures For Designers

Textures give life to very visual presentation as everything in nature is textured. All designer who are after something realistic needs a make-belief effect that’ll be something that makes the visual be questioned, is it real or graphics? A perfect texture is the answer. Easier said than done one might say as not all of us are artist so we could create them on our own.

Most commonly used and favored amongst designers and even viewers is Wood Texture, for it gives the most welcoming effect. First impression is “like”! If you’re at designing a nature based theme, you’ll automatically pop on the wooden texture, as it’s a universal element representing earth, nature and life.

There are many resources online for textures but obtaining a right one is a challenging task. Here we have a High-Res Collection of Painted Wood Texture, most believable, beautiful and in variety that you’ll love collecting. Have a go at them!

Dilapidated Red Wood


Red ainted wood


Old Paint_Wood Free Texture


Painted and Stripped Texture


Chipped paint texture


Peeling Paint on Wood Floor


Painted Wood


Scratched Paint On Desk Texture


Moldy Paint on Wood


Peeling Paint


Silver Spray Paint on Rough Wood


Texture Painted Wood


Pink Painted Wood Surface


February 10 2014


11 Clean & Minimalist Websites for your Inspiration

Advertise here with BSA

It’s easy to see that more an more designers are embracing the minimalistic approach to web design. Now there are websites that eliminate unnecessary elements and keep only what really matters, designs that are clean and intuitive, like the ones we will show here today. We have different examples of clean and minimal sites with beautiful navigation, neat menus and nice type to keep you inspired, take a look.

Cactus for Mac

11 Clean & Minimalist Websites for your Inspiration


11 Clean & Minimalist Websites for your Inspiration

Studio Dobra

11 Clean & Minimalist Websites for your Inspiration

Mike Kus

11 Clean & Minimalist Websites for your Inspiration

Roman Kirichik

11 Clean & Minimalist Websites for your Inspiration

Darrin Higgins

11 Clean & Minimalist Websites for your Inspiration

R&Co. Design

11 Clean & Minimalist Websites for your Inspiration


11 Clean & Minimalist Websites for your Inspiration

Another Pony

11 Clean & Minimalist Websites for your Inspiration


11 Clean & Minimalist Websites for your Inspiration


11 Clean & Minimalist Websites for your Inspiration

February 07 2014


February 03 2014


Expert Tips When Creating and Selling Fonts

Fonts are essential for the feel of the website. Font developers, like you, need to be smart when creating and selling fonts. In media, where typefaces are very much used, fonts have changed in the same rate as any other web page elements, adjusting to the need and time of its use. As there are people who are able to read, fonts will continue to evolve in its styles, uses and forms.


Photo by Juan Joro

With that being said, the growing importance of font designers is also heightened. Because of the need for constant development, typefaces should adapt to the changes that the users demand, ergo, the talent and skill to create aesthetically beautiful and purposely readable fonts.

Actually, creating your own font is pretty rad. Imagine seeing your own handwriting or something you developed being used in designs and even in websites. At the most, if you have been trained well and created awesome designs, you could even sell your fonts! So it’s really a pretty good thing to learn.

This article will help you achieve that goal. 1stWebdesigner will be very much willing to teach you the following:

  • Things you need to know before designing a font
  • Shall I sell it or give it away for free?
  • Tools you might need to use, and some alternatives

With these points, let’s see if you can stand up to the challenge of being great font-designers and developers.

What do I need to know before starting to design my own font?

Sun Tzu once said,

“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle”

You’re probably wondering why I wrote that. Well, those words should be the guiding principle in designing your own fonts. Knowing your ‘enemy’ and ‘yourself’ is a sure-shot weapon on making magnificent and potentially sellable typefaces. Once you mastered these principles, you can truly design fonts as sharp as the samurais.


Photo from Career Girl Network

The first thing to keep in mind is your ‘enemy’. Now, who is your enemy? Let’s just say your enemy is your target. What is your purpose for designing this font? Knowing where to use it and to whom you shall use it for will be the key in making fonts that impact (pun intended) in the world of web design.

Ask yourself:

  • Am I targeting kids for this design? If yes, then, design a comical font.
  • Am I targeting professionals here?  If yes, then, you might want to think of a typeface that would suit them.
  • Do I want to see my handwriting on the computer screen? If yes, then you might want to think of a font that will suit this answer.

You should be careful in targeting your audience because you might fire a stray bullet and hit the ones you’re not targeting. So keep in mind that fonts have their specific uses for specific purposes.

Try reading: Font Police: 20 Fonts to Avoid to Maintain Your Readers’ Sanity

Next, consider if what type of font you will use. There are a few types of fonts out there. What you need to do is to know where to place your font in these categories. Doing this will easily make your font sellable and searchable in case you wanted to make money out of them.

Read Working with Types: Typography Design Tutorial for Beginners for the different types of fonts.

After knowing what font you will use, you will be challenged to know what fonts to suit you. As a designer, you probably have your own niche. Are you comfortable with script fonts? Do you prefer comical fonts rather than formal ones? What will make your design workflow easier, faster and better?

You need to address those cases and try to look at your own designs. Assess your strengths and play with them. If you are good at formal typefaces, then go for it. Learn where are you going to put yourself and also where to have fun doing it. Remember, if you love what you do, your target will  love what you make out of your designs. So choose.


Shall I sell my fonts or give them away for free?

Now this is a pretty good question. Say, you were able to design a handful of awesome fonts. Your friends are pressuring you to sell them out so that you could take them out for dinner. And now, you come to ask yourself, “Can I really sell these?”

The answer is yes. Though the second question will arise, will they buy it? Now that’s another good question.


Making people actually buy your fonts could seem very difficult, though, very possible. With the Internet growing more vibrant as each day passes by, you are basically given an unlimited number of people wanting fonts. Now, with a growing number of demands, your fonts will be competing with other designers which, in some ways, could be better than you. Now, how do you win? Try these:

  • Foundry Method – Foundries are font manufacturers. They distribute typefaces to a lot of outlets like web shops and resellers so it’s a pretty big opportunity to sell your font through them. It is an exclusive deal as the foundry will maintain the right to sell the font you designed as dictated by the contract. In return, you will be given royalty.

Good points of this method:

  • It requires minimal to zero business knowledge. The foundry will take everything in. No headaches.
  • They can improve your design and make it more sellable.
  • Foundries protect you from piracy and misuse.
  • You can focus on designing more fonts rather than thinking about how to sell them.

Bad points:

  • Little to no control at all with the method of selling the fonts.
  • You will receive only a portion of the earnings.

Things to consider about your foundries:

  • The niche of the whole foundry.
  • Their assistance to the production of your font.
  • Target market of the foundry.
  • Length and terms of the contract.

Here are some foundries you’ll want to take a look at.

  • Reseller Method – Resellers offer fonts from a lot of different foundries. What they do is they sign contracts with font publishers or foundries and sell the fonts in the latter’s library. They receive a particular percentage from selling the fonts. Each reseller can have different and various customers. It’s up to them how to sell the fonts.

Good points:

  • You could be able to reach more diverse markets, hence, more customers.
  • You could maintain the brand pricing and rights with different resellers.

Bad Points:

  • You need to know a lot about business.
  • You have to share your earnings with the reseller.

Things to consider about your foundries:

  • Who are their clients?
  • Are they pretty respected?
  • What are their methods?
  • What fonts do they actually sell?

Here are some resellers you can visit: Graphic Design Forum

  • Forever Alone Method – if you think you can handle it, you could go by yourself. Though it may be pretty scary to sell fonts on your own, it can give you a very good value boost. But it could be pretty difficult as you have to have great designs that stand out to do this.

Good points:

  • You have full control over your design and selling strategy.
  • You could take home 100% of the profit.
  • You can establish a name for yourself.

Bad Points:

  • You need to know a lot about business.
  • It requires less time on designing, more on selling.
  • It is pretty difficult to go in the system.

Tools you might need to use and some alternatives

As you will be delving into the world of font creation, you will appreciate the following tools, which will make your life easier and your designing experience, more fun.

For Drawing the Fonts

  • Paper and Pen – very rudimentary, yes, but this method is still accepted. If you have a cool handwriting and a pretty decent pen and a clean sheet of paper, you’re on the go. You could just scan it afterwards. (Tips: Draw big to achieve higher resolution and detail)


Photo by Jeenie Green

  • Pen Tablet Input Tool – this is for serious designers. This will cost you money but will spare you from scanning the fonts. So it’s also a good deal.


Photo by James

  • For Editing the Drawings

 Adobe Illustrator –Adobe Iillustrator is a very versatile tool to vectorize your fonts. It’s pretty complicated but learnable.


Photo by Viktor Hertz

GIMP – GIMP is very easy to use, though, lacking the features that Illustrator possesses.


  • For Rendering the Fonts

Fontographer ($350) – easy to use yet powerful font editor. You can design typefaces, customize existing fonts and it displays them in high resolution!

FontLab Studio ($650) – is a professional font editor used by major computer companies and most font foundries. It is very comprehensive and yet flexible software that targets professionals and amateurs alike.

Fonstruct(free) – is a fully operational web-ran software that allows you to create your own fonts. You can register as a user to be able to render your design.

Other free tools here!


The creation and selling of fonts just proves that the typeface is important in any aspect of design. Creating new typefaces signifies that this notion is still alive and moving. With newer designs emerging almost every day, it’s pretty good to see that it adds a sense of uniqueness in the design, making it more viable for income. Truly, when you learn how to make fonts, you’ll be in places you’ve never been.

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