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Category: Fireworks

Smashing Fireworks is an extended section of Smashing Magazine which has been created to provide you with articles and tutorials on Adobe Fireworks, curated by Michel Bozgounov.

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iOS Grid System, A Free Extension For Adobe Fireworks

I’ll come right out and say it. I think the grid is the unsung hero of a good design. It gives structure and lets the design fall perfectly into place on the canvas. With a grid, adapting and building something new into your design is easy. Think of it like a house’s foundation.

iOS Grid System, A Free Extension For Adobe Fireworks

With a solid foundation, the house is stable, and building on it is easy. With a solid grid, your design can easily be adapted to accommodate whatever changes come along. Today, we’ll share iOS Grid System, which I’ve been using when designing apps in Adobe Fireworks.

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An Easy Way To Present Adobe Fireworks Design Prototypes

With its structured approach to organizing assets, Adobe Fireworks can be a pleasure for designing and prototyping. But demonstrating your designs on a wide range of devices can be time-consuming and could even require some degree of coding.

The Create Demo extension addresses some of these issues. It automatically converts your Fireworks documents into portable presentations, which can then be easily presented in any browser — desktop or mobile.

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iOS Prototyping With Adobe Fireworks And TAP (Part 3)

In the previous parts of this tutorial (part 1 and part 2), we looked in detail at the building blocks of our design in Fireworks (pages, shared layers, symbols, styles), and we started to make a demo prototype in Fireworks.

iOS Prototyping With Adobe Fireworks And TAP (Part 3)

The demo prototype had six pages, linked together by hotspots, and each hotspot was customized for use with TAP. Now that the six-page Fireworks PNG file is ready, it’s time to prepare it to be exported as a click-through prototype and then converted (with the help of the TAP extension) to an animated, gesture-based prototype that we can use on an iOS device.

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iOS Prototyping With TAP And Adobe Fireworks (Part 2)

In the previous article in this series, "iOS Prototyping With Adobe Fireworks and TAP, Part 1: Laying the Foundation," I looked in detail at the four major stages that all of our projects at Cooper go through, as well as our approach to Fireworks PNG organization, and the main components of Fireworks (pages, shared layers, symbols and styles).

iOS Prototyping With TAP And Adobe Fireworks (Part 2)

Now we can start actually building the prototype. First, let me try to sum it up quickly: to create a “live” iOS prototype, you only need to perform the following six steps:

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iOS Prototyping With TAP And Adobe Fireworks (Part 1)

One of the strengths of Adobe Fireworks lies in its ability to produce basic-level prototypes in HTML format for the purpose of sharing concepts, evaluating them and conducting usability tests. But did you know that you can use Fireworks in combination with other tools to create complex iOS prototypes (for both the iPhone and iPad) with similar ease?

iOS Prototyping With TAP And Adobe Fireworks (Part 1)

In this series of three articles, you’ll learn how to use Adobe Fireworks together with another tool, called TAP, to create prototypes with animated transitions.

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Workflow Optimization Design Cutting Edge iOS Apps With Adobe Fireworks

Since the release of iPhone 4 and the iPad 3 (known as "The new iPad"), Apple has doubled the resolution of the displays, which are now 640 x 960 pixels (iPhone 4 and 4s), 1536 x 2048 pixels (iPad 3), and 640 x 1136 pixels (iPhone 5).

Design Cutting Edge iOS Apps With Adobe Fireworks

To keep a good-looking user interface for both the old as well as the "Retina" resolution, Apple decided not to resize all graphics or make use of scalable image formats (such as SVG), but instead it now requires two sets of graphics for each device. When building an app for iOS, you have to provide the normal-sized and double-sized images for each graphic. This is where the strongest Adobe Fireworks feature comes in — the capability to create sharp vector elements which scale up and down without any quality loss.

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Using The Texture Panel In Adobe Fireworks

When you’re working in Fireworks — be it for a website design, mobile design or graphic asset for a project — one need you will undoubtedly have is support for textures. While Fireworks is an amazing tool in other areas, the usability of the textures feature could definitely be improved. In this article, we’ll look at an extension that does just that — the Texture panel.

Using The Texture Panel In Adobe Fireworks

Currently in Fireworks, you can apply textures (which are pulled from your “Textures” folder) to whatever vector shape you’re working on. Unfortunately, the way Fireworks lists textures isn’t as intuitive (or fast) as it could be.

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Useful Fireworks Techniques And Features For Large Design Teams

While Fireworks can be a useful and powerful tool for any screen designer, several aspects of it make it really shine in an enterprise environment when used by both small and large design teams. What do I mean by “enterprise”? For the purpose of this article, enterprise can be defined as any environment where multiple designers, developers and other stakeholders collaborate on a project.

Useful Fireworks Techniques And Features For Large Design Teams

In this situation, Fireworks excels for a variety of reasons. I’ll share the top five reasons why our user experience (UX) team at Citrix (which consists of about 20 designers, researchers and editors, working on Web, desktop and mobile applications) uses Fireworks. I’ll illustrate my points with a few practical examples, as well as examples from other design firms.

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How To Optimize The Design Workflow With Fireworks Extensions

As a platform, Fireworks gives its users a lot of freedom, when it comes to extending it. Because of that, Fireworks has a thriving ecosystem of add-ons (extensions) that add a lot of valuable functionality with newer options.

Optimizing Design Workflow With Extensions

In this article, I'll try to list some of my top extensions for Fireworks. These are not necessarily the most complex or powerful extensions, but rather those that have helped me be more productive with my Fireworks workflow over the years. Also, all of these are free to test and use, so you can even try them right away!

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Simulating The Letterpress: From Live Filters In Fireworks To CSS Code

One of the visual effects that is a mainstay in my Web design toolkit is the letterpress effect. Used properly, it’s a quick way to make text blend better with the layout, as if it were machine-stamped onto the background. Think of what a home appliance marquee or a professional business card looks (and feels) like, and you’ll know what I’m talking about.

The Letterpress Effect: From Fireworks To CSS

Letterpress is a venerable technique of printing that involves “pressing” a plate of movable type onto a sheet of paper to produce an effect that is impressed (where the text is pressed down onto the paper) or embossed (where the text is raised above the surface of the paper).

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Interactive Prototypes And Time-Savers With Adobe Fireworks

As interface designers, we’re often required to demonstrate the look and feel (and interactions) of the interfaces we design. We often begin with a series of flat images, and while these may be pixel perfect and show some amazing detail, they lack the context of the user experience.

Interactive Prototypes And Time-Savers With Adobe Fireworks

Without context, it would be difficult for your clients to understand the flow of an app or website in the way you originally planned it. The best way to introduce context is by adding interactivity. By providing an interactive prototype (or interactive mockup), your clients can play around with it to their hearts’ content to get an idea of how the app will work and to test the interactions.

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Create Interactive Prototypes With Adobe Fireworks

Whilst designing for screens—including Web, mobile and RIAs—you often need to create a prototype to see whether the application works properly before moving onto the development stage. Prototypes are also essential in Web projects.

Create Interactive Prototypes With Adobe Fireworks

For example, when you plan an online ordering process, you have to be sure that every step is correct and that no critical elements are missing. Usually, you would create different screens for all pages of a website, ordering process or application workflow, and then describe the connection between them.

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