A blog sharing resources and inspiration for designers

  • May 14 / 2014
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Graphic Design, Inspiration, Showcase, Technology, Web Design

Showcase of Website Transitions

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Code And Theory

The more I explore this site the more I love it, from the entertaining animations to the interesting behaviour of elements as you resize the browser.

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Visit Code And Theory.

Agency Survival Kits

You can tell straight away that this site was built with love, the way every part of it is crafted is a testament to the skill and passion of the team behind it. Passion projects like this always end up looking the best due to the effort that goes into making them perfect.

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Visit Agency Survival Kits.

Ondo

This site is art. They have taken code, colour, images, text, and turned it into an interactive visual artwork. The interactions on this site are fun to play with and it’s just wacky and awesome.ondo
Visit Ondo.

Studio Songes

Another site that I would consider an artwork. The transitions as you scroll on this site are so smooth, giving a 3D illusion which is pushing the boundaries of the web. Smooooooth scroll.

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Visit Studio Songes.

Mobee

Mobee rewards you for scrolling with the fun transitions are throughout this site, I haven’t seen many sites go against the norm like Mobee have, but it’s definitely paid of for them. A great experience.

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Visit Mobee.

  • Apr 16 / 2014
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Graphic Design, Inspiration, Resources

The perfect home office

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Since starting out as a freelancer this year I’ve set up a home office for my design work. Finding the right combination of furniture and accessories to make a creative environment can be tricky, expensive, and rewarding. My current set up is a work in progress and so far is made up of IKEA furniture, design books, and my essential mac hardware. I’ve collected a few items which are on my wish-list which I’ll post here, some of them I have, others are too expensive.

The Desk

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The Artifox Desk

This handcrafted desk not only looks beautiful but is functional and is likely to increase your workflow. With seamless docks for your devices, out-of-sight cable management and even a writable/erasable board to write down those important notes this is a very well considered design and would look nice in any setting.

The iPhone/iPad Cover & Dock

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Grovemade iPhone Covers & Docks

These crafted wooden covers for iPhones, iPads, Laptops, Notebooks and docks look great. Grovemade have used good quality steel and wood to create their range of products, have a look at their site for the full range.

The Clock

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Timetravel Wall Clock by Tobias van Schneider

Probably not the easiest way to tell the time, but who cares. This clock looks great and would get your mind wandering in those daydream moments.

The Artwork

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Get Sh*t Done Poster

For those times that you need reminding to stop procrasinating and get to work, this poster helps kick your ass into gear.

  • Aug 28 / 2013
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Graphic Design, Inspiration

Dieter Rams – Less, but better

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Dieter Rams is a German industrial designer who has had a timeless effect on design. His influence can be seen in the iPhone in your hand, your bedroom clock radio and many other products available today. His style of design can be summed up by the phrase he uses, “Weniger, aber besser“, which translates as “Less, but better“.

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The Ten Commandments for good design which he created can be applied to all facets of the design industry, he absolutely nails it:

  1. Good design should be innovative — It does not copy existing product forms, nor does it produce any kind of novelty just for the sake of it. The essence of innovation must clearly be seen in all of a product’s functions. Current technological development keeps offering new chances for innovative solutions.
  2. Good design should make a product useful — The product is bought in order to be used. It must serve a defined purpose, in both primary and additional functions. The most important task of design is to optimise the utility of a product’s usability.
  3. Good design is aesthetic design — The aesthetic quality of a product is integral to its usefulness because products we use every day affect our well-being. But only well-executed objects can be beautiful.
  4. Good design will make a product understandable — It clarifies the product’s structure. Better still, it can make the product talk. At best, it is self-explanatory.
  5. Good design is honest — It does not make a product more innovative, powerful or valuable than it really is. It does not attempt to manipulate the consumer with promises that cannot be kept.
  6. Good design is unobtrusive — Products fulfilling a purpose are like tools. They are neither decorative objects nor works of art. Their design should therefore be both neutral and restrained, to leave room for the user’s self-expression.
  7. Good design is long lived — It does not follow trends that become out-dated after a short time. Well designed products differ significantly from short-lived, trivial products in today’s throwaway world.
  8. Good design is consistent in every detail — Nothing must be arbitrary. Thoroughness and accuracy in the design process shows respect towards the user.
  9. Good design should be environmentally friendly — Design must make contributions towards a stable environment and sensible raw material situation. This does not only include actual pollution, but also visual pollution and destruction of our environmet.
  10. Good design is as little design as possible — Less is more – because it concentrates on the essential aspects and the products are not burdened with non-essentials. Back to purity, back to simplicity

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Dieter creates stylish products which are both functional and aesthetic, he has even been credited for influencing many of apple’s products. His work has been exhibited across the world and even if it was created years ago, still proves to be timeless. I type this as I’m wearing a Braun Watch designed by the man himself.

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For more Dieter Rams inspired work, check out this Tumblr dedicated to his style

  • Jul 01 / 2013
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Inspiration

Stay Hungry

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I’ve just arrived back in Sydney after a weekend trip away to QLD, one of my work-mates was competing in a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu competition and I went along to support and see what it’s all about. It was great to get out of Sydney and get away from the recurring schedule that life turns into, but most importantly I took away from this trip the drive to commit and improve at certain aspects of life.

 

All the BJJ (brazilian jiu jitsu) crew that I was introduced to were incredibly committed and focused on their art, but still realised the importance of having a work/life balance and enjoying themselves. There is an underlying drive in all of them which is to be the best at what they enjoy, which in this case is BJJ, and which in turn makes them incredibly happy.

 

I found it similar to how I feel about design, I love doing it and want to become as good as I can at it. As a designer you like to try and improve, or at least you like to think you do, so seeing the determination and passion that all these guys/girls in BJJ have has made me hungrier than ever to be better, the best, and to enjoy it a hell of a lot more.

 

The moral of the story…STAY HUNGRY!

 

And a massive well done to my mate Miter for winning two gold medals, and Kit for his massive stash of them too. Ossssssss.

  • Jun 17 / 2013
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Inspiration, Resources

Where to find inspiration

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In my previous article I talked about creating an image library of references that can help your design process, this post will share some of my favourite places to find these images.

I find my inspiration online, in real life, and through apps like instagram. Sometimes you can find inspiration from the most random places and in today’s world there’s no excuse not to capture those moments. Most of the population have camera enabled smart phones which can upload within seconds, so it’s getting easier and easier to collect.

There are a few go to sites which I regularly check to get inspired, here are my favourites ones:

Behance
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This online community of artists is an awesome way to get inspired and collect example of well-crafted artwork across a variety of disciplines. Most of the portfolios on Behance are of a very high quality and are by the top designers and agencies from around the world.

The Behance network also host some ‘served‘ sites which focus on the best work in specific areas such as Web Design, Typography, Branding and even collections curated by top digital agencies like R/GA called Digital Age Served.

Behance is a great way to gain exposure as a designer, I suggest signing up for free and posting some work to get noticed.

 

Dribbble
Dribbble

If you’re not familiar with Dribbble, it’s a social network that lets designers, illustrators and digital artists post detailed screenshots of whatever they are working on. It’s especially useful for finding reference of pixel perfect interface elements, a search for something like ‘buttons‘ will give you a collection of very highly crafted button styles, which can influence your designs.

Dribbble is strictly invite only, which makes sure that all the work posted is of a high standard. It’s also very community driven and let’s other designer provide feedback on your posts and give suggestions.

 

Designspiration
Designspiration

Designspiration is a way to discover and share your design, architecture, photography and fashion inspiration. The site also has a handy search function, which lets you filter by colours to help you find what you’re looking for.

 

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FFFFOUND

ffffound isn’t just great fun to say, it’s an awesome collection of designs, photography and artwork which is submitted by the community. The more you use this site the more it learns about you and caters what you see to your tastes.

 

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Awwwards - Website Awards - Best Web Design Trends

Awwwards is a showcase of the best of the best. It exists to award the best developers, designers and web agencies from around the world. Submissions are reviewed for design, creativity, usability and content which makes sure the sites don’t just look nice, but work well.

 

Site Inspire
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Site Inspire is another site which showcases great web design. There are lots of great examples of minimal, clean, and responsive websites.

 

Here are a bunch of others which are also worth checking out:

DeviantART

Smashing Magazine

The Cool Hunter

Pattern Tap

I Love Typography

TheFWA

One Page Love

Pinterest

Stumble Upon

There are so many other sites out there which showcase great work, the above links are just some of my favourites which I regularly browse. I suggest subscribing to their RSS feeds so you can see all the new work in one place.