“So, you do nothing all day.” That’s how many people would respond to someone who says they spend the day with a pen or pencil in their hand. It’s often considered an empty practice, a waste of time. They’re seen as an empty mind puttering along with the busy work of scribbling.
But for us designers and artists, drawing pictures all day is integral to our process and to who we are as creative people, and despite the idea that those who doodle waste time, we still get our work done. So, then, why are those of us who draw pictures all day even tempted to think that someone who is doodling or drawing pictures in a meeting or lecture is not paying attention?
Yes, it's time to announce the winners! A couple of weeks ago we had announced the "Redesign The Web" Poster Design Contest that encouraged you to design a thought-provoking poster. We wanted to encourage everyone to actively get involved in making the Web a more accessible and usable place today.
Among the entries, many have picked up the idea of the globe. We received clean and minimalistic designs, complex artworks, illustrations, inspirational quotes and call-ups, as well as a comic strip. One participant even produced a poster using only HTML5 and CSS3 (including the bleed and trim marks inside the print style sheet).
We'd like to sincerely thank all the contributors who had taken on this challenge and had sent us their work! Overall, we've received over 150 entries, and in a thorough review process, selected 35 of the best entries (which are now presented in the article below). And trust us—it was no piece of cake to choose the best from many excellent poster submissions. Of course, the owner of each poster owns all the copyrights for their artwork.
Back in 2009, Smashing Magazine presented 100 (Really) Beautiful iPhone Wallpapers. In the meantime Apple has shaken the industry with iPhones 4, 4S and 5, as well as iPad 1, 2, 3, and not to forget to mention the brand new iPad mini and iPad 4 — devices that steal the show with the best ever displays and gigantic resolutions. Having your hands on these masterpieces, how about enriching your device with a high-resolution Retina wallpaper that makes your thingamajig look even better than it already does.
We proudly present you a great collection of iPhone and iPad wallpaper sources, including lots of different designs and styles, from artistic and abstract to photographic and illustrated images. The introduced sites offer a huge variety of categories, so there's something for everyone. The resolutions range from 640×960px to 2048×1536px, optimized for the different appliances. All of the images are clickable and linked to their source. You can explore further artistic treasures and more wallpapers by using the links.
We always try our best to challenge your artistic abilities and produce some interesting, beautiful and creative artwork. And as designers we usually turn to different sources of inspiration. As a matter of fact, we’ve discovered the best one—desktop wallpapers that are a little more distinctive than the usual crowd. This creativity mission has been going on for over four years now, and we are very thankful to all designers who have contributed and are still diligently contributing each month.
We continue to nourish you with a monthly spoon of inspiration. This post features free desktop wallpapers created by artists across the globe for August 2012. Both versions with a calendar and without a calendar can be downloaded for free. It’s time to freshen up your wallpaper!
Please note that:
- All images can be clicked on 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?
When writing a web application from scratch, it’s easy to feel like we can get by simply by relying on a DOM manipulation library (like jQuery) and a handful of utility plugins. The problem with this is that it doesn’t take long to get lost in a nested pile of jQuery callbacks and DOM elements without any real structure in place for our applications.
Android is an attractive platform for developers, but not all designers share our enthusiasm. Making an app look and feel great across hundreds of devices with different combinations of screen size, pixel density and aspect ratio is no mean feat. Android's diversity provides plenty of challenges, but creating apps that run on an entire ecosystem of devices is rewarding too.
At Novoda, we build Android software for brands, start-ups and device manufacturers. We often work with visual designers who are new to Android. The new Android Design site is the first resource we recommend. You should definitely check it out. However, there is plenty more to pick up! The goal is to create apps that people love to use. Thoughtful UX and aesthetically pleasing visual designs help us get there.
As iOS, Android, and Windows 8 take the Web to smaller screens, designers are adopting techniques to make their websites usable on handheld devices. Responsive Web designs present different formatting and layout to suit the device on which their pages are displayed. Browsers choose the appropriate styles on page load, freeing website owners from having to maintain different sets of pages for different display scenarios.
The most common responsive method is to use CSS media queries to serve different style sheets (or parts of style sheets) based on the number of pixels available. Most often, this is applied to handheld devices such as smartphones, but it could be applied to 13-inch laptops, 30-inch TVs or Kindle-sized readers. Responsive designs respond to their environment.
I sincerely believe that the user experience community should add game design to its toolbox of competencies. If we’re truly committed to creating satisfying user experiences, then there’s no reason why games, which can satisfy people so richly, should be excluded.
Operating successfully in the games domain means learning a new set of competencies, and I don’t want to oversimplify the challenges of designing high-quality game experiences. However, if you’re in a position to jump in and start designing, then I can at least offer a primer to help you steer clear of some of the most common mistakes.
For years you have been searching for it. You hear the question being asked in your dreams as you go on an Indiana-Jones-type-crusade to find the answer. When the answer comes to you, you know that the confetti will fall from the ceiling and the band will start playing your favorite song. You might even get a kiss from that special someone. So what is this question? "What is the secret to Web design?"
A tough question and one that might not have an answer. In 2006, Oliver Reichenstein wrote that Web Design is 95% Typography. Some people loved it, others were not so amused. If Web design was based that much on typography, then what was the point of learning anything else? All you needed to do is understand the elements of typography and you were good to go.