Author:

Vitaly Friedman loves beautiful content and doesn’t like to give in easily. Vitaly is writer, speaker, author and editor-in-chief of Smashing Magazine. He runs responsive Web design workshops, online workshops and loves solving complex UX, front-end and performance problems in large companies. Get in touch.

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15 Beautiful High-Quality Free Fonts

Every now and again we take a look around, select “fresh” high-quality free fonts and present them to you in a brief overview. The choice is enormous, so the time you need to find them is usually the time you should be investing in your current projects. We search for them and we find them, so you don’t have to.

Aller Sans

In this selection we’re glad to present you Aller Sans, Mayberry Pro SemiBold, Quicksand, Agrafa Hairline, Sketch Rockwell, Megalopolis Extra and a couple of other high-quality free fonts. Please read the license agreements carefully before using the fonts — the license can change from time to time.

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25 Powerful Children Portraits

Today is the Blog Action Day. Today bloggers all across the globe are uniting and publishing posts related to poverty. We want to raise awareness, start a global discussion and add momentum to an important cause. Smashing Magazine strongly believes that together we can make a difference by informing people about the problem and donating money to charitable organizations.

Children in Poverty

We considered various options for this post: we could showcase designs or posters related to poverty, or we could scour the Web for poverty-related icons and wallpapers. But we decided to do something different. We decided to prove that each of us can help make poverty history.

For this purpose we collected beautiful portraits of children who lived in poverty but are now supported by charitable organizations. These photos were shot by photographers, photojournalists and organizations who have tried to improve the conditions of children in poor countries. The money these organizations raised gave these children hope, a future, something to rely on and something to believe in. There are millions of children out there who need your help. And you can help them by donating to the Global Fund and donating to Kiva.

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Retro and Vintage In Modern Web Design

Retro and vintage are becoming a new trend. Once rarely used in this robust, dynamic medium, early, retro and vintage elements are now becoming more and more popular in a variety of design contexts. Online shops, corporate designs, portfolios and blogs incorporate both styles on a small and large scale. When applying "old-style" elements to their works, designers produce creative and appealing designs that make their websites stand out and look really different. As a matter of fact, if executed carefully, such designs almost never look boring, although one might intuitively think that the opposite would be the case.

Retro and Vintage Designs - CSS Tinderbox

Retro and vintage designs exhibit graphic solutions that are strongly influenced by the time period that they are supposed to represent. While retro focuses on the style of the 1910s to 1930s, vintage recalls the time period between the 1950s and 1980s. In both cases, design elements reflect some old-fashioned motifs, trends, personalities and objects that had been an essential part of our lives in the past.

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Desktop Wallpaper Calendar: October 2008

Desktop wallpapers can serve as an excellent source of inspiration. However, if you use some specific wallpaper for a long period of time, it becomes harder to draw inspiration out of it. That's why we have decided to supply you with smashing wallpapers over 12 months.

And to make them a little bit more distinctive from the usual crowd, we've decided to embed calendars for the upcoming month. So if you need to look up some date, isn't it better to show off a nice wallpaper with a nice calendar instead of launching some default time application?

Smashing Wallpaper - October 2008

This post features 40 free desktop wallpapers, created by designers across the globe. Both versions with a calendar and without a calendar can be downloaded for free.

Please notice:

  • all images can be clicked and lead to the preview of the wallpaper;
  • you can feature your work in our magazine by taking part in our desktop wallpaper calendar series. We are regularly looking for creative designers and artists to be featured on Smashing Magazine. Are you one of them?

So what wallpapers have we received for October?

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Free Fonts Of The Month: Myndraine, Museo Sans

Every now and again we take a look around, select “fresh” high-quality free fonts and present them to you in a brief overview. The choice is enormous, so the time you need to find them is usually the time you should be investing in your current projects. We search for them and we find them, so you don’t have to.

Screenshot

This month we are glad to present 5 free high-quality fonts and collections of grunge and handwritten fonts. Please read the license agreements carefully — they can change from time to time.

  • Last episode features Fertigo Pro and FF Nuvo,
  • You can find over 80 more free fonts in our section Fonts.
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Tribute To Graffiti: 50 Beautiful Graffiti Artworks

Street culture and graffiti are well-known for being provocative, appealing, bold and uncompromising. Originally used by gangs to mark their territory in some urban area, graffitis have now become a rich medium for unrestricted expression of ideas and statements. In fact, creative designers and artists across the globe use this form of art to deliver their message and showcase their work.

Graffiti

Probably the most prominent graffiti artist is Banksy, a famous pseudo-anonymous British artist whose works focus on topics such as politics, culture, and ethics. His art has appeared in cities around the world; it's worth mentioning that Banksy does not sell photos of street graffiti or mount exhibitions of screenprints in commercial galleries. You can explore Banksy's works in the Time's slideshow The World According To Banksy. However, many different artists explore graffiti in a variety of ways.

In this episode of Monday Inspiration series we are presenting a tribute to street art and graffiti — over 50 examples of beautiful and impressive graffiti artworks. Hopefully everybody will find some inspiration at least in some of the works showcased below. Feel free to explore the works of artists by following the links to their sites.

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40 Creative Design Layouts: Getting Out Of The Box

Over the last months we have seen a strong trend towards more individual web designs. These designs often use realistic motifs from our regular life as visuals. However, apart from visual design elements one can also get creative with the layout of the site – its structure and the way the information is presented and communicated. To provide you with some ideas of how exactly it can be done, we have collected examples of creative design layouts.

Showcase of Unusual Layouts - Oh, Snap @ Jason Santa Maria

In the showcase below we present 40 creative out-of-the-box layouts that break the boring 2- and 3-columned, boxed layouts. We have collected pure CSS -designs, CSS+JavaScript -layouts as well as Flash -designs. Most designs presented below risk their site structure and content presentation with unusual approaches. That's what makes them different. Hopefully you will find some creative ideas that you can develop further in your future projects.

We strongly encourage designers to break out of the usual boxed layout conventions, experiment with new approaches and risk crazy ideas. Show what you are capable of!

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Desktop Wallpaper Calendar: September 2008

Desktop wallpapers can serve as an excellent source of inspiration. However, if you use some specific wallpaper for a long period of time, it becomes harder to draw inspiration out of it. That's why we have decided to supply you with smashing wallpapers over 12 months.

And to make them a little bit more distinctive from the usual crowd, we've decided to embed calendars for the upcoming month. So if you need to look up some date, isn't it better to show off a nice wallpaper with a nice calendar instead of launching some default time application?

Smashing Wallpaper - September 2008

This post features 30 free desktop wallpapers for September, created by designers across the globe. Both versions with a calendar and without a calendar can be downloaded for free.

Please notice:

  • all images can be clicked and lead to the preview of the wallpaper;
  • you can feature your work in our magazine by taking part in our desktop wallpaper calendar series. We are regularly looking for creative designers and artists to be featured on Smashing Magazine. Are you one of them?

So which wallpapers have we received for September?

Read more...

10 Futuristic User Interfaces

Good user interfaces are crucial for good user experience. It doesn't matter how good a technology is — if we, designers, don't manage to make user interface as intuitive and attractive as possible, the technology will hardly reach a breakthrough. To gain the interest in a new product or technology, users need to understand its advantages or find themselves impressed or involved.

And here is where creative ideas and unusual interface approaches become important. Innovative doesn't mean usable and usable hardly means innovative. As usual, it's necessary to find an optimal trade-off. And some user interfaces manage to achieve just that.

Screenshot

Below we present 10 recent developments in the field of user experience design. Most techniques may seem very futuristic, but some of them are already reality. And in fact, they are extremely impressive. Keep in mind: they can become ubiquitous in the next years.

You may also want to take a look at the related posts:

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5 Useful Coding Solutions For Designers and Developers

Often creative and truly remarkable design solutions remain unknown because we, designers, simply overlook them. Being busy with our own projects, we sometimes try to grasp the intuition behind (probably) complex and cluttered code of other designers to understand how they manage to implement particular design ideas. In fact, by just observing the code of other developers we can learn a lot from them; we can find interesting ideas and improve the quality of our work.

Kobe

As you know, we, at Smashing Magazine, are quite curious folks. We are truly interested in unusual design approaches and creative solutions. Therefore we are regularly looking for them and once we found them, we analyze them, try to understand them and try to figure out both advantages and disadvantages of the technique we have found. And in this post we want to share some of them with you.

We would like to start with 5 advanced and elegant design approaches and ask you if you are interested in this series and would like to have more similar articles. Please let us know what you think in the comments to this post. Now let's dive in. You should probably have some CSS-knowledge already before starting reading this article.

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