Monday, July 9, 2012

Great Collection of Social Media Icons

Socialico is a package of 74 social media icons, combined within a single weight font and designed by Jelio Dimitrov a.k.a. Arsek.

Every single icon matches a particular key on your keyboard – for example, the lower caps of the basic Latin alphabet form the more popular social icons in a circle, while the representations in capital letters of the same alphabet show them without the circle formation – in their pure form (you can find a detailed tutorial depicted on the last image of the presentation.

The social icons font is very convenient and easy to use for web design in themes, page layouts etc, as well as for every type of print or offline design. Have fun!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Getting Paid for Your Efforts

2011/03 Mike Monteiro | F*ck You. Pay Me. from San Francisco Creative Mornings on Vimeo.

Getting paid is always a tricky thing for professionals who offer creative services, including design. Mike Montiero of Mule Design Studio in San Francisco led a talk called "F*ck You. Pay Me." on San Francisco Creative Mornings on Vimeo. He & his lawyer cover extremely valuable topics, like firing a client (yes, you can fire a client), the top 6 things you need to know about contracts, and they even provide a 3-point winning strategy. Definitely worth a look!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

First Thing's First Manifesto

One of my favorite publications has always been Adbusters. It is a global network of "culture jammers" and creatives working to change the way information flows, the way corporations wield power, and the way meaning is produced in our society. In their most recent edition, they published something called the "First Thing's First Manifesto", which really spoke to me. They explain that "graphic designers are to our information age what engineers were to the age of reason. They set the mood of the mental environment. They stoke the desire that fuels the consumerist economy." They continue by posing the question, "Wielding such power, what moral responsibility do designers, visual communicators and artists bear?" Here is the Manifesto in its entirety:



We, the undersigned, are graphic designers, art directors and visual communicators who have been raised in a world in which the techniques and apparatus of advertising have persistently been presented to us as the most lucrative, effective and desirable use of our talents. Many design teachers and mentors promote this belief; the market rewards it; a tide of books and publications reinforces it.

Encouraged in this direction, designers then apply their skill and imagination to sell dog biscuits, designer coffee, diamonds, detergent, hair gel, cigarettes, credit cards, sneakers, butt toners, light beer, and heavy-duty recreational vehicles. Commercial work has always paid the bills, but many graphic designers have now let it become, in large measure, what graphic designers do. This, in turn, is how the world perceives design. The profession's time and energy is used up manufacturing demand for things that are inessential at best.

Many of us have grown increasingly uncomfortable with this view of design. Designers who devote their efforts primarily to advertising, marketing and brand development are supporting, and implicitly endorsing, a mental environment so saturated with commercial messages that it is changing the very way citizen-consumers speak, think, feel, respond, and interact. To some extent we are all helping draft a reductive and immeasurably harmful code of public discourse.

There are pursuits more worthy of our problem-solving skills. Unprecedented environmental, social and cultural crises demand our attention. Many cultural interventions, social marketing campaigns, books, magazines, exhibitions, educational tools, television programs, films, charitable causes and other information design projects urgently require our expertise and help.

We propose a reversal of priorities in favor of more useful, lasting and democratic forms of communication - a mindshift away from product marketing and toward the exploration and production of a new kind of meaning. The scope of debate is shrinking; it must expand. Consumerism is running uncontested; it must be challenged by other perspectives expressed, in part, through the visual languages and resources of design.

In 1964, 22 visual communicators signed the original call for our skills to be put to worthwhile use. With the explosive growth of global commercial culture, their message has only grown more urgent.Today we renew their manifesto in expectation that no more decades will pass before it is taken to heart.


I urge all graphic designers, visual communicators, and art directors of any kind  to print out and sign this personal commitment to the use of our talents for the greater good. We have the power in influence opinion and shift the consumers' gaze if we take responsibility for our creativity and focus it on worthwhile causes rather than simply selling more crap that people don't need. I for one am owning my power.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

14 Proven Ways to Find Graphic Design Clients

This is a wonderful, comprehensive list from graphic designer Sheila Patterson with 14 tips to find more clients. Sometimes it can be hard to have the confidence to market oneself as a designer, having the guts to talk yourself up, go door-to-door, whatever it takes to build up that initial client list. This list will definitely help challenge the introvert in all of us to get out there and show people who we are and what we can do!

Friday, March 9, 2012

Taking "Mini-Risks": The Practice of Uncertainty

Here is a very interesting article I found today on Jonathan Fields' written by guest author Emilie Wapnick. Emile is a "writer, coach, violinist, filmmaker, law school graduate, and web designer. She works with multipotentialites to help them build lives and businesses around ALL their interests." First off, Emilie's approach appeals to as a designer as my tastes and talents are varied and numerous. Perhaps this is due to the fact that designers like living in the grey area of grey matter, between the right and left sides of the brain, balancing the analytic and global brainwaves. Who knows. One thing I do know is that it is difficult to weave the web of my life, career, and artistic endeavors sometimes because there is just so much I am interested and want to do.

Recently, I have been grappling with confidence. Confidence in my talents, my career choices, my ability to make it all work somehow. This is normal for someone who, not but a year ago, decided to go "all in" and work for herself. I have learned thus far that selling myself is not my forte, that networking can be excruciating for a shy girl, and that no one is going to do it for me. I have to dig deep and do it for myself, or face the prospect of no work. Enter the idea of mini-risks.

In her article, Emile describes mini risks as being ways to "embrace uncertainty in small ways throughout the day." Her rationale is that by doing things that make us just slightly uncomfortable and stretching ourselves, it becomes easier to do those things that are seemingly impossible. The theory being that if we stay small, shrunken inside our shells of self-doubt and fear, we will never attempt to go big.

You can read the full article here:
You can find out more about the author Emilie Wapnick on her site Puttylike:
And check out her book "Renaissance Business" here:

Thursday, March 1, 2012

21st Century Design: Shaping Behavior for Preferrable Outcomes

21st Century Design from Artefact on Vimeo.

Designers are now armed with a growing set of persuasive techniques for shaping behavior. But with great power comes great responsibility. Check out this very informative article from Rob Girling about the inherent power and ethical responsibility that comes with being a designer, a profession built on influencing people's power of choice.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Let the "Fancy-ing" Wars Begin!

Alright Pinterest fans, check out the new high-end Pinterest competitor Fancy, which features gorgeous products, amazing vacations, inspirational art and more. Unlike Pinterest which allows users to "Fancy" them and actually purchase them through their site. Fancy founder Joseph Einhorn says, "Rather than going to Amazon or Google and searching for stuff I intend to buy, in the future in the commerce game, I think getting hotel destinations, finding cool products, or discovering fashion items will be done through the people I admire and trust. From a consumer perspective, I'm able to go to this website, where I'm finding out about the coolest stuff in the world, and instead of clicking, signing up, and giving my address and contact info to a million different websites, I am able to shop right inside, whether it's on the website or the iPad, iPhone, or Android app, and go all the way through to checkout in an integrated experience." Let the "Pinning", or rather, "Fancy-ing" wars begin! And add me once you sign up, a process that takes all of 30 seconds:

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Color Theory

Did you know that both men & women over 70 like the color red better than any other? Why is that, you ask? As our eyes age, we sometimes lose the ability to distinguish between blues and yellows. The color that stands out the most is red, so that may be why we are more drawn to it as we age. Check out Scott Design's poll to find out other interesting color-related facts.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Check out this handy little toolbar I found today! It can be embedded on your website and direct traffic to your most important content. It is customizable, and there is a free version allowing 25 click-throughs per month. They also track your Hello Bar data and you can view your click-through rate, clicks and views by custom date ranges. See what messages and colors caused your clicks to spike or drop. You can even visualize A/B tests and choose the winner. Its a great way to highlight exactly what you would like your website audience to see first. You can see it in action on my website:

Friday, February 10, 2012

The Lost Principles of Design

Having been a designer for over 15 years now, having taken umpteen design class teaching design theory, and gotten to the point in my career where I break most of the design rules most of the time, its good to be reminded of the art form's basic principles. Let this post serve as a reminder of those original conventions that should still inform the design decisions of even the most seasoned veteran. Also, notice how these principles apply, not just to design, but to life itself more times than not. Thanks to Chad Engle from Boomtown Roy and Creative Fuel for the informative article and stylish set of wallpapers to remind us daily of the principles we love to turn on their ear.

Original Article:
Design Principles Wallpaper:

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Check out this incredibly useful compilation of 30 Excellent Resources for Graphic Design Freebies at Six Revisions. Its chock-full of links to sites featuring free stock photos, textures, patterns, brushes, fonts and vectors.

Monday, January 30, 2012

The fact of the matter is, if you are a designer, and admirer of design, or someone trying to learn more about it, one thing is for sure- it is almost impossible to define. Its transient nature, its ambiguity and yet pervasiveness, has inspired me to dedicate my life to it's study. As an artistic, visual person attempting to make a living doing what I love, it is very difficult to decide where to focus my creativity. The barrage of media messages and the faster-than-light information rate exchange usually leaves me in a stupor at the end of the day. Trying to harness the power of communication and infuse it with meaningful insights and an artistic sensibility is no small task. So, here we will explore the essence of design. This blog will be at once an homage to those amazing entrepreneurs that shape the industry, a collection of inspirational influences, a philosophical rambling, and a self-gratifying exercise in self-definition. Hopefully we will all learn something along the way. Welcome!