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Articles and tutorials on designing in Photoshop, InDesign, Illustrator and Fireworks. Free icons, textures, PSDs and other similar resources are featured here, as well as showcases of photography and video. This is also the place that hosts our regular Desktop Wallpaper Calendar series.
The past year has seen quite a rise in UI design tools. While existing applications, such as Affinity Designer, Gravit and Sketch, have improved drastically, some new players have entered the field, such as Adobe XD (short for Adobe Experience Design) and Figma.
For me, the latter is the most remarkable. Due to its similarity to Sketch, Figma was easy for me to grasp right from the start, but it also has some unique features to differentiate it from its competitor, such as easy file-sharing, vector networks, “constraints” (for responsive design) and real-time collaboration.
Sometimes all we need is a little inspiration kick to get our creative juices flowing. Maybe your secret is to go for a short walk, have a little chat with a colleague, or scroll through your favorite eye candy resources. Whatever it might be that helps you get new ideas, we, too, have something for you that could work just as good: desktop wallpapers.
To bring you a regular dose of unique and inspiring wallpapers, we embarked on our monthly wallpapers mission eight years ago. Each month, artists and designers from across the globe diligently contribute their works to it. And well, it wasn’t any different this time around. This post features their artwork for March 2017. The wallpapers all come in versions with and without a calendar. Time to freshen up your desktop!
Besides the user's needs, what's another vital aspect of an app? Your first thought might be its design. That's important, correct, but before you can even think about the design, you need to get something else right: the data.
Data should be the cornerstone of everything you create. Not only does it help you to make more informed decisions, but it also makes it easier to account for edge cases, or things you might not have thought of otherwise.
If you want to get even more out of Sketch, feel free to check out our fancy new book, “The Sketch Handbook”, with practical examples that you can follow along, step-by-step, to master even the trickiest, advanced facets and become a true master of Sketch.
The sharing spirit in the design community is remarkable. Designers spend countless hours on side projects and without asking for anything in return, they share their creations freely with the community. Just to give something back, to inspire and to support fellow folks in their work.
When working on a project yourself, freebies like these can come to the rescue when you have to get along on a tight budget, but, more often that that, they simply are the missing piece that’ll make your design complete.
Creating a clock in Sketch might not sound exciting at first, but we'll discover how easy it is to recreate real-world objects in a very accurate way. You'll learn how to apply multiple layers of borders and shadows, you'll take a deeper look at gradients and you will see how objects can be rotated and duplicated in special ways. To help you along the way you can also download the Sketch editable file.
This is a rather advanced tutorial, so if you are not that savvy with Sketch yet and need some help, I would recommend to first read "Design a Responsive Music Player in Sketch" (Part One | Part Two) that cover a few key aspects in detail when working with Sketch. You can also have a look at my personal project sketchtips.info where I regularly provide tips and tricks about Sketch.
Time flies by! February is already here and artists and designers from across the globe have once again diligently created a potpourri of unique wallpaper calendars to freshen up your desktop. This monthly wallpapers mission has been going on for eight years already and we are very thankful to all the creative minds who challenge their skills and contribute to it each month anew.
This post features their desktop artwork for February 2017. The wallpapers all come in versions with and without a calendar and can be downloaded for free. Now there’s only one question left to answer: Which one will make it to your desktop this month?
Welcome to the second part of this tutorial, in which we will finish designing the music player that we started in part one. This includes creating the icons at the bottom, as well as making the music player responsive, so that all elements adapt to the width of the artboard and, thus, can be used for different device widths.
Our premise in creating all of the icons is to use basic shapes as often as possible, instead of custom vector elements. Shapes are much easier to set up and modify, and we will still be able to combine them into more complex forms using Boolean operations.
Sketch is known for its tricky, advanced facets, but it's not rocket science. We've got you covered with The Sketch Handbook which is filled with practical examples and tutorials that will help you get the most out of this mighty tool. In today's article, Christian Krammer gives us a little taste of all the impressive designs Sketch is capable of bringing to life. — Ed.
Music plays a big role in my life. For the most part, I listen to music when I'm commuting, but also when I'm exercising or doing some housework. It makes the time fly, and I couldn't imagine living without it.
However, one thing that has always bothered me is that the controls of music apps can be quite small and hard to catch. This can be a major issue, especially in the car, where every distraction matters. Another issue, in particular with the recent redesign of iOS' Music app, is that you can't directly like tracks anymore and instead need to open a separate dialog. And I do that a lot — which means one needless tap for me.
Editor's Note: New year, new challenges! You might have set up your New Year's resolutions already, but if not, how about designing something... different for a change? Today, we're happy to introduce Dorota, an artist who created a fun little project last year that was inspired by Twitter's new logo based on 13 circles. Below you'll find the lessons Dorota has learned along the process, so maybe you'd like to embark on a similar journey as well?
If you can make a bird out of circles, then you can probably make all sorts of animals. I wanted to add something more design-based to my portfolio, so I made that my personal challenge. The idea was to draw animals from exactly 13 circles, and I decided to match that number by making 13 animals. This makes for a nicer title for the project, and it helps to get others to share it around the web, too. Knowing what you want to create early on helps, because then all you have to do is figure out ways to make it happen.
New year, new beginnings! To cater for a fresh start into 2017 and all the challenges, endeavors and adventures it might bring along, artists and designers from across the globe put their creative skills to the test and created unique desktop wallpapers for you to indulge in.
This monthly wallpapers mission has been going on for eight years now, and we are very thankful to all the creative minds who contribute to it tirelessly each month anew. Today's wallpapers all come in versions with and without a calendar and can be downloaded for free. Happy New Year!
New month, new wallpapers! To get you in the right mood for December, designers and artists from across the globe got their ideas bubbling and created unique and inspiring Christmas wallpaper calendars to deck your desktop. This monthly wallpapers mission has been going on for eight years now, and we are very thankful to everyone who challenges their artistic skills and contributes to it each month anew.
This post features desktop artwork for December 2016. Each wallpaper comes in versions with and without a calendar and can be downloaded for free. Now you only need to decide on your favorite!
Almost five years ago, I had the honor of writing a post on Smashing Magazine about my Photoshop panel GuideGuide. Since then it has seen wild success as the most installed third-party Photoshop extension, an achievement I’m quite proud. In that time, I’ve added some powerful features and, most recently, expanded it to Illustrator. This post will give you a taste of how GuideGuide can change the way you use guides in Photoshop and Illustrator.
If you’re one of the many people who already use GuideGuide, please read on. You may discover some unconventional uses that are not immediately apparent. I’ll provide a overview of the major features, and then give some examples of advanced and unusual ways it can be used to make you a more efficient designer.