More Than Pixels: Selling Design Discovery

More Than Pixels: Selling Design Discovery More Than Pixels: Selling Design Discovery Kyle Cassidy 2018-05-17T14:10:03+02:002018-05-18T15:22:16+00:00 As designers, we know that research should play a pivotal role in any design process. Sadly, however, there are still a lot of organizations that do not see the value of research and would rather jump straight into the visual design stage of the design process. The excuses given here tend to be: “We already know what our customers want.” “We don’t have the time/budget/people.” “We’ll figure out the flaws in BETA.” As designers, it is important that we are equipped to be able to have conversations with senior stakeholders to be able to sell and justify the importance of the so-called “Design Discovery” within the design process. In this article, I’ll demystify what is meant by the term “Design Discovery” to help you better establish the importance of research within the creative process. I’ll Read the full article…

Designing a Portfolio Website with Oversized Typography

You’re reading Designing a Portfolio Website with Oversized Typography, originally posted on Designmodo. If you’ve enjoyed this post, be sure to follow on Twitter, Facebook, Google+! The goal of any portfolio site is to showcase your work. That’s a given. But you also want to sell your work in a way that grabs attention. You can do this with visuals, or by focusing just on content. Or by … Read the full article…

This WordPress Theme Follows the Latest Design Trends – and the Results are Stunning!

You’re reading This WordPress Theme Follows the Latest Design Trends – and the Results are Stunning!, originally posted on Designmodo. If you’ve enjoyed this post, be sure to follow on Twitter, Facebook, Google+! How to stay relevant, if you are a web designer? You need to put in the time and effort needed to keep pace with the latest design trends. As is the case with the latest technologies, new trends in design … Read the full article…

How to Create Good Error Messages

By Steven Hoober In this column, instead of talking about one of my usual topics—tactics to avoid errors—I’ll discuss how to work within constraints and pragmatically address real-world issues. During the software-development process, your team may ask you to design an error message. Annoying edge cases all too often pop up—usually too late in the process to fix the issue in any other way. For starters, I never write what I’d call error messages. Admittedly, I occasionally use that term—in the same way I might use words such as sitemap—just at the beginning of a conversation to orient everyone to my process. Just as I did in the title of this column. But I then switch to a more meaningful term and get everyone to talk about exception messages. Read the full article…

Avoiding Half-Assed User Research

By Jim Ross Although we can’t always spend as much time and money as we’d like to conduct user research and there are times when we need to take shortcuts, there’s a fine line between discount user research and half-assed user research. UX professionals have always had to fight to get user research included on projects. Because of time and money pressures, we may have felt justified in cutting corners to fit in whatever user research we could. After all, even a little user research is better than none at all. Isn’t it? Yes, taking clever shortcuts can reduce the time and cost of doing user research—and, sometimes, conducting at least some user research is better than doing none at all. However, if you sacrifice in the wrong areas, you can end up gathering incorrect or incomplete information that can lead to poor design decisions and, ultimately, waste far more Read the full article…

5 Signs You Need to Fire Your Client (And How to Do It)

Nothing can make your life miserable like a bad client. From scope-creep to those that never pay on time, sometimes you just have to let a client go. It’s a tough decision and you don’t want to burn any bridges, but often it’s best to dissolve the relationship and move on. When do you know it is time? Today, we’ll look at five situations when it’s time to fire a client with some ideas on how to do it tactfully. 1. Problems with Payment The top reason to fire a client is a failure to pay. Regardless of how you bill or what your rates may be, there is an expectation and professional courtesy that clients will be invoiced and pay in a timely manner. If you are invoicing on a schedule (monthly billing is common), clients should pay within a reasonable time frame. Your invoice should include a due Read the full article…

Landing The Concept: Movie High-Concept Theory And UX Design

Landing The Concept: Movie High-Concept Theory And UX Design Landing The Concept: Movie High-Concept Theory And UX Design Andy Duke 2018-05-15T13:00:58+02:002018-05-16T09:21:38+00:00 Steven Spielberg once famously said, “If a person can tell me the idea in 25 words or less, it’s going to make a pretty good movie.” He was referring to the notion that the best mass-appeal ‘blockbuster’ movies are able to succinctly state their concept or premise in a single short sentence, such as Jaws (“It’s about a shark terrorizing a small town”) and Toy Story (“It’s about some toys that come to life when nobody’s looking”). What if the same were true for websites? Do sites that explain their ‘concept’ in a simple way have a better shot at mass-appeal with users? If we look at the super simple layout of Google’s homepage, for example, it gives users a single clear message about its concept equally as well Read the full article…

Light Or Dark UI? A Usability Perspective

Often, the best way to explain the difference between user experience and user interface to the unfamiliar is through a more relatable analogy. If UI is how the car looks, UX is how it drives. If UI is a dating profile, UX is how the date goes. These comparisons illustrate the differences well, but sometimes […] The post Light Or Dark UI? A Usability Perspective appeared first on Usability Geek Read the full article…

How to Plan Your Website Redesign for Success

You’re reading How to Plan Your Website Redesign for Success, originally posted on Designmodo. If you’ve enjoyed this post, be sure to follow on Twitter, Facebook, Google+! Redesigning a website is always a challenge because it requires a lot of resources and can be quite risky. The idea of implementing the newest technology and design trends is tempting. But as a rule of thumb, it is better … Read the full article…

20+ Best Watercolor Photoshop Actions

Whether you’re designing a unique website background, a poster, sketch, or a creating an artistic photo composition, using a watercolor Photoshop action can make your design stand out from the crowd. A watercolor effect it’s not an easy effect to master when created from scratch. It takes a lot of work, time, and skill to achieve a realistic watercolor effect in Photoshop. The good news is that using a watercolor Photoshop action can help you skip the learning curve and experiment with a watercolor effect in just a few clicks! In this collection, we’re featuring some of the best watercolor Photoshop actions you can use to turn your photos into watercolor art, craft amazing backgrounds, and do much more. Have a look and start downloading. You can grab all these Photoshop actions for a single price when you subscribe to Envato Elements. Photo Painter Photoshop Actions This is a bundle Read the full article…

Building Mobile Apps Using React Native And WordPress

Building Mobile Apps Using React Native And WordPress Building Mobile Apps Using React Native And WordPress Muhammad Muhsin 2018-05-11T15:15:56+02:002018-05-12T08:00:26+00:00 As web developers, you might have thought that mobile app development calls for a fresh learning curve with another programming language. Perhaps Java and Swift need to be added to your skill set to hit the ground running with both iOS and Android, and that might bog you down. But this article has you in for a surprise! We will look at building an e-commerce application for iOS and Android using the WooCommerce platform as our backend. This would be an ideal starting point for anyone willing to get into native cross-platform development. A Brief History Of Cross-Platform Development It’s 2011, and we see the beginning of hybrid mobile app development. Frameworks like Apache Cordova, PhoneGap, and Ionic Framework slowly emerge. Everything looks good, and web developers are eagerly coding away Read the full article…

Google I/O Developer Roundup: What’s New?

Google I/O Developer Roundup: What’s New? Google I/O Developer Roundup: What’s New? Rachel Andrew 2018-05-11T12:30:47+02:002018-05-12T08:00:26+00:00 The Google I/O keynote opened with an animation asking us to “Make Good Things Together,” and in this article, I’m going to round up some of the things announced in the Keynote and Developer Keynote, that are of interest to Smashing readers. The announcements in the keynote were backed up by sessions during the event, which were recorded. To help you use the things announced, I’ll be linking to the videos of those sessions plus any supporting material I’ve been able to find. I would love to know which of these announcements you would like to find out more about — please do leave a comment below. Also, if you are an author with experience to share on any of these then why not drop us a line with an outline? The Keynotes The main Read the full article…

Things Designers Should Know About SEO In 2018

Things Designers Should Know About SEO In 2018 Things Designers Should Know About SEO In 2018 Myriam Jessier 2018-05-10T14:25:45+02:002018-05-12T08:00:26+00:00 Design has a large impact on content visibility — so does SEO. However, there are some key SEO concepts that experts in the field struggle to communicate clearly to designers. This can create friction and the impression that most well-designed websites are very poorly optimized for SEO. Here is an overview of what we will be covering in this article: Design mobile first for Google, Structure content for organic visibility, Focus on user intent (not keywords), Send the right signals with internal linking, A crash course on image SEO, Penalties for pop-ups, Say it like you mean it: voice search and assistants. Design Mobile First For Google This year, Google plans on indexing websites mobile first: Our algorithms will eventually primarily use the mobile version of a site’s content to rank Read the full article…

Become a project management pro with this bundle

Some people just know how to get things done. If you want to be one of those people who knows how to get the most out of others, you need to pick up the Essential Project Management Certification Training Bundle. You can get it on sale now for 96% off the retail price! Dive into the 5 in-depth courses of the Essential Project Management Certification Training Bundle and you’ll quickly find everything you need to prove your skills as a project manager. This bundle will provide you with nearly 50 hours of professionally-taught information about project management. It’s built to prepare you to manage your way to success regardless of your field, and will make sure you’re ready to prove your skills with industry-recognised certification exams. The Essential Project Management Certification Training Bundle is valued at $1,800 but you can save a whopping 96% off the retail price right now. Read the full article…

Design Trend: Dark & Moody Designs

Good design can really get you in the mood. Today, we’ve got a collection of dark and moody website designs that will help inspire you to create a distinct atmosphere in your design work. While most dark collections have a bit of a “downer” vibe, not all of these designs have that feel (although color has a lot to do with how you feel when you look at them). This showcase is more than a gallery, we hope it inspires you to create a dark, moody design of your own. Dark Colors What’s important to consider that dark doesn’t always mean black. A dark color palette immediately sets a certain tone for a design. What’s important to consider that dark doesn’t always mean black. It’s often colors that are toned (addition of black) or shaded (addition of gray). Examining the design above for Hooligan, the overall mood is a little Read the full article…

Adobe to drop Creative Cloud price to $5 for K-12 schools

Adobe has reinforced its commitment to K-12 schools with a new Creative Cloud offer. As of May 15, 2018, the full suite of Adobe Creative Cloud apps will be available to US primary and secondary schools via its authorised Adobe reseller for $4.99 per user license, per year.  The subscription gives students their very own license and sign-in, providing access both at school and home. Terms include a minimum purchase quantity of 500 licenses for a single school, or 2,500 licenses for a school district.  The offer follows Adobe’s announcement in January to provide access to Spark for Education, a set of storytelling apps with premium features and additional capabilities for K-12 and higher education institutions, free of charge.  In this blog post, Sharif Karmally, senior product marketing manager at Creative Cloud for education comments: “We are on an exciting journey, collaborating with educators to empower the next generation to Read the full article…

Website Design Examples for ICO Campaigns

You’re reading Website Design Examples for ICO Campaigns, originally posted on Designmodo. If you’ve enjoyed this post, be sure to follow on Twitter, Facebook, Google+! Cryptocurrency, blockchain, ICO. Do these words sound familiar to you? If so, then you probably have some crypto cash in a digital wallet. It is safe to say that despite all the recent falls and bans, cryptocurrency is still popular. … Read the full article…

How to Customize a Website Mockup Template

A website mockup template can be a design life-saver. It makes it easy to show off a website design concept in a setting that represents actual use (on many different devices). But how can you customize a website mockup template and drop in your own design? Here’s how. There are two ways to get started. You can either create your own website mockup template to use in projects or download one to get started quickly. The great thing is that there are so many template options out there to help clients visualize a new design in real-time. Here’s everything you need to know about customizing a template (as well and finding a great template, to begin with). What is a Website Mockup Template? Clients love to see a finished design in a mockup template, because it gives them a better idea of what the design team is thinking. Most website Read the full article…

10 Tips for Using Text Effects That Don’t Suck

Adding effects to typography can be a source of heartache for designers. Clients demand a drop shadow or embossing, and you’re stuck with text effects that threaten to ruin a project. What you need is an arsenal of text effects that don’t suck so you can help the client pivot to something a little more classy. The trick to all of these effects is using them with purpose. Good typography doesn’t need “help.” If a font isn’t working alone, it’s not going to work with a bunch of techniques added either. (You’ll only make something bad even worse.) The best text effects are nearly invisible to non-designers. Or text effects are used to add meaning to typography or lettering. Here are a few tips for using text effects that don’t suck with some pretty cool examples. 1. Use Purposeful Drop Shadows Whatever you do, don’t click the drop shadow button Read the full article…

Using Low Vision As My Tool To Help Me Teach WordPress

Using Low Vision As My Tool To Help Me Teach WordPress Using Low Vision As My Tool To Help Me Teach WordPress Bud Kraus 2018-05-03T14:00:32+02:002018-05-04T09:06:01+00:00 When I say that I see things in a different way, I’m not kidding. It’s literally true. For almost 30 years, I’ve lived my life with macular degeneration, a destruction of my central vision. It is the leading cause of legal blindness in the United States and I’m one of those statistics. Macular degeneration is a malady of old age. I see the world much as a very old person does. You could say that I am “hard of seeing.” Since my condition is present in both eyes, there is no escape. Facial recognition, driving (looking forward to driverless cars), reading, and watching movies or TV are difficult or impossible tasks for me. Since my peripheral vision is intact, I have no problem moving about Read the full article…