Latest Stories

Are you doing enough to renew your skills as a designer? If your answer is no, the following tips should be of interest for you. If your answer is yes, these tips might still get you to think again. It is easy to get caught in the loop of doing the same thing forever.

Look for some inspiration
Feeding yourself with design inspiration is a must for every designer. Following are a few ways to stay up-to-date with what’s happening.
school of design
Photo by jetalone
Go back to studying
Going back to school is quite hard when you’re on a day job, especially if you’re freelancing. This said, it can be interesting to go back in some evening school to pick up a course on calligraphy, programming or whatever skill you’d like to learn. The internet is also a good resource if your city or town doesn’t have university or schools.
  • Evening school
    Part time schools usually have a wide range of topics covered, so you should be able to learn something new there. The good thing about those is that you’ll get to listen to an expert and directly ask your questions. If you’re a freelancer, this is also a nice occasion to socialize and meet other people with similar interest. I won’t put any links here as it will depend on your location, but a good search should make it easy to find the available courses in your area.
  • Online courses
    As you know, the internet is full of free stuff, even college courses. If you are an autodidact at heart, take a look at Standford on iTunesMIT online courses or at the University of Washington. The Online Books Page is also a great reference, as well as… Google searches
design books
Photo by karen horton
Read some design books
While reading on the internet is a great way to learn, books have two great advantages: they put all the information in one place and they give you an in-depth view on a specific topic. Books in the following categories should cover your learning needs.

  • Graphic design & typography
    Apart from the inspiration books, many are very useful to learn more about graphic design theory. Color theory, grid systems or typography history are great topics and will definitly help you to improve your skills. If you don’t know what to read, you can start with those: “Grid Systems in Graphic Design“, “Typographie: A Manual of Design” or “Designing Books: Practice and Theory“.
  • Software
    You think that you already know all your Adobe softwares by heart? Think again, those softwares are huge and you’ll learn something from a good book for sure. You can also try to learn some new softwares like video editing tools or audio editing softwares, learning 3D might be a good idea too.
  • HTML, CSS & Webdesign
    You’ll be amazed to discover how many HTML tags you didn’t know of, CSS tricks you ignored and so on… Reading CSS: The Definitive Guide really helped me to get a better understanding of the possibilities of designing with CSS, just like Don’t Make me Think by Steve Krug.
tuts plus screenshot
Learn some new techniques with tutorials
Tutorials are amazing, they allow you to learn skills one by one. The Tuts+ network by Envato should be a good place to get started, they cover pretty much anything design-related: Photoshop, Illustrator, webdesign,… Many Digg-likes are also dedicated to tutorials like PixelGroovy.
slideology
Photo by whiteafrican
Attend conferences or watch them online
Successful and creative people talk about the topics they’re experts in, so you better listen to them. Changing your views on design, or simply on the world itself, is a great way not to keep on doing the same things over and over. While attending the conferences is good for networking, it is also very expensive most of the time and often taking place too far. That’s why it’s so good to have the internet and be able to watch those speeches online.

  • TED
    “Ideas worth spreading”, TED’s website tells it like it is. Many great designers have been hosted as speakers at TED, so you should take a look.
  • AIGA
    Apart from organizing conferences, AIGA also releases videos of the events. Many of those talks are truly inspiring and make you want to move forward.

You can give comment, Reviews or mail me at artistideablogspot@gmail.com Here you can also mail your work for add you work on this blog and our WebSite http://artistidea.co.cc
Read More ...

Latest Stories

Being a successful creative has a lot to do with the way you work. Sure, you can’t teach good design, but it never hurts to learn a few new tricks, or simply make the most of your talents. So without further adieu, here’s 50 ways to be more successful as a designer. Take ‘em or leave ‘em.

Don’t get stuck before you’ve started: get some good ideas.

1] Metaphors.

Great ideas can stem from using themes and metaphors. Basing a site design around the idea of a school, for example, can open up a whole avenue of ideas. A great design works because the theme houses and conveys the content seamlessly.

2] Don’t take all day to brainstorm.

It always helps to throw ideas around with a colleague or friend (as long as he knows what he’s doing). Try to have a couple of short sessions of brainstorming rather than one massive one as ideas can quickly go cold.

3] Get off that computer!

Sometimes it’s best to just have a break. Leaving the computer can seem like going on holiday in rush hour, but it usually helps if you just take a 10 minute break and get some fresh air. If you can’t do that, try listening to some music, or taking your jumper off.

4] Join a forum.

A lot of creatives work from home, but that doesn’t mean they can’t talk to anyone. There are a lot of really helpful and talented people out there willing to have a chat about design, you just need to find them. Here are some of my favorite forums:
Graphic Design Forum (one of the oldest and largest forums on graphic design)
Smashing Magazine Forums
Layers Magazine
Designate Online
DevLounge (OK, it’s not a forum, but it’s a really decent site)

5] Think brand.

Try going to a few courses on branding, as brand thinking is vital to developing the way you think. Keep your ideas squeaky simple, and 9 times out 0f 10 they will work. Thinking in terms of branding means you can develop key words to stem your ideas from. Complexity just doesn’t work.

6] Use a sketchbook.

I almost always start with ideas that I have scribbled down in my trusty sketchbook. Whenever I get an idea I just make sure I get it down on paper. This always helps as whenever you’re stuck at a later date, you don’t have to go out and buy another book, just refer to your own! Don’t just keep it to ideas though, put URLs, book titles, words, and all the sketches down that you can. It will develop into your creative mind, on paper.

7] Get your specs straight.

Always ensure you know the media you’re going to be using at the start of working on a project. Knowing that there’s going to be photography involved means you may need to think about locating a shoot. 3D may mean getting some help to make it look that little bit better. Taking it to print in the last minute is also not advised: things never go to plan! Ensure you know the scale of production you’re going to be dealing with, and research the printing processes you’re going to use.

8] Draw a map.

I find it helps to visualise the brief. Highlight key words and phrases, and jot them down in your trusty sketchbook. Then see how these ideas could link up by drawing lines between them and branching out from those core ideas. Pretty soon you’ll have enough on the page to sketch out some decent ideas.

9] Rough it out.

Once you have THE idea, and it’s on paper, try putting it together at low res on the computer. This way you can see what you might need to rethink or improve to get the job done well. At this stage you don’t need to worry about perfect dimensions or colours, just see how it goes.

10] Take a shower.

No, not because your odor is putting your colleagues off, but because (apparently) running water increases brain productivity. Try not bring the brief in with you, but spending time in a place that you feel really comfortable in can greatly help those ideas flow.Practice makes Perfect
Getting into good habits is one of the best pieces of advice for any designer. But how?

11] Stay on top of the latest happenings.

Don’t let yourself fall behind the times of design and technology: they’re both fast moving industries. On the other hand, don’t go following the latest fads just because everyone else is. Keep up to date by visiting sites such as Smashing Magazine and DesignIsKinky. However, our personal favourite for up-to-date design is this absolutely mind blowingly awesome site called Liquidicity ;-)

12] Keep to web standards.

It always looks like you mean business when your site is 100% standards compliant. However, some browsers (cough *IE* cough) still don’t always like to play ball. If it works and looks the same in all browsers then you have done your job, no matter how compliant you are. If there is one tool you’re going to get to dramatically improve your web design standards it would have to be the Web Developer Toolbar for Firefox.

13] Make a library.

In most programs, you end up reusing something that you once made a while ago. It always helps to keep a well organised library of all your reusable files. This especially applies when you’re working with Flash, where you can keep track of loops, buttons, timers, code snippets, and symbols. This centralised library can also help keep you’re work consistent.

14] Save. Save. Save. Save again.

Are you getting the message? No matter how decent your computer is, don’t leave yourself in a position where you could lose all of your days work in one flick of a switch. Sometimes it helps to have had a dodgy computer in the past, as I now save every time I leave the window I’m working in. Sometimes my Mac just won’t play ball, and the only option is a reboot. Don’t let a reboot ruin your day.

15] Collaborate.

We never let things go before we’re completely happy about the final version. Working together means you can share your ideas as mentioned before, but also give critique to one another before finalising the design. These friendly, supportive criticisms can save you from harsher comments later on from your boss or client. Working together is also a whole lot more fun.

16] Do it right first time.

It’s not always easy, but ensuring you have tested your site across browsers thoroughly before putting it out in the open will ensure your customers and clients are a lot more happy. This sort of service is what a lot of clients will look out for when choosing someone to design (or redesign) their site.

17] Save your repeated actions

In a lot of applications you can end up doing the same tasks over and over again. For example in Photoshop you can save repeated procedures as “actions”. If you happen to be a Mac user and have OS X Tiger, you can use Automator to run repetitive aspects of your work flow for you. To be honest, I have never really got on with “Auto”, but I know a lot of people find it really helpful.

18] Your assets’ greatest asset.

Keeping track of your assets can be a challenge, but it’s important you keep them how YOU want. Everyone has a different way of working. For example, when working on a site, I keep all of my full res and vector images in an entirely separate folder to the site, and when it comes to getting final composites ready for the web, I export at a compressed size to the respective folder of the site. One of the reasons why I like Illustrator so much is because there’s no need to worry about starting off at a large resolution, due to the vector based design. This is important in Photoshop, where it’s always best to start off big, and scale down when you need to.

19] Simplify.

Striving for simplicity may not seem too tricky at first, but when you have a wealth of ideas, it’s important not to complicate and distort your original message. If you are using a lot of complex visual elements, try to keep the colours simple, and vice versa. This way, your colours and design won’t compete with each other.

20] Experience is everything.

The longer you have worked in design, the more experienced you become. Spending more time focusing on the applications you use can really speed up your production, making you more efficient and more knowledgeable of their feature sets.
Software Skills
Don’t be a bad workman and blame your tools. Ensure you know your applications like the back of your hand.

21] Naming Files.

Often overlooked, but naming your files in an organised and consistent way really helps you see how things have progressed, and what file belongs where. Never EVER attach “final” to a filename, because you will always go back to it and change it. Eventually you’ll have a folder full of twenty newer versions of that “final” revision. I have got into the habit of naming my work and putting “01″, “02″ etc after it so I can see how many revisions I have made easily, and recall an older one to compare quickly.

22] Gradients in Flash.

The default green to black gradient in Flash is evil. Don’t use it. Ever.

23] Another layer of Photoshop Cake.

Always try to use as many layers as possible when working in Photoshop, avoiding merging them together. The worst thing possible is doing an amazing composition and thinking “actually, I think I’ll change that” and realising you merged those 2 layers. What’s worse is if you have gone past its history state, meaning even if you undo the last 50 changes you have made, there will still be nothing you can do!

24] Use a pen and paper.

In this day and age, it’s getting less and less common to use a pen and paper (I hope you remember what they look like). Try sketching a few images out and scanning them in. Bring them into Photoshop and play around for a bit. This can really help you build a more organic and original feel to your work.

25] Play with Colour. Like no other.

After creating your image in Illustrator, or whichever application you use, try modifying the colours slightly by pulling it into Photoshop. This can really help you to unify the final colour of the composition.

26] Buy a new computer.

Call that a tip?! Well, it’s often forgotten, but the apps on the shelves today are getting faster and faster. To be honest, if your computer is more than 5 years old it’s time to consider an upgrade. Obviously your requirements are going to be unique: 3D animation is a whole lot more demanding than print design, but never the less, the faster your computer, the faster you can work. Many designers prefer Macs (I do), but PCs can run all of the applications that Adobe provide, and a few more. The PC vs. Mac argument is entirely up to you.

27] More RAM.

Just bought a new computer? Time to buy more RAM. Can’t afford a new computer right now? Buy more RAM. All the small jobs, like working on a couple of images, writing on your site, and playing back previews in Flash build up to devour any RAM you have. It’s as simple as this. Buy more RAM and you’ll be able to work faster.

28] Get more plug ins.

No matter which application you use, there’s almost always more plug ins available. Getting new filters and effects for Photoshop can greatly help you improve and speed up your work. Adobe’s own site is great for Photoshop plug ins.

29] Gradients in Photoshop.

To avoid the horrid “banding” that occurs when printing gradients in Photoshop, add a little noise to the layer. Obviously the amount of noise varied depending on canvas size and resolution.

30] Learn more.

Buy a few books, and visit a few of the websites that have been created to teach you how to use the software you own. For example, when I was learning Flash, the first thing I did was go out and buy a book. Sams Publishing run a great series of books claiming to teach you [app name or programming language] in 24 hours.
Finishing Work
A good designer checks his work. A great designer double checks it.

31] Ask your friend.

Get a friend or someone nearby to give their thoughts on your work. Even if they’re not a designer, it always helps to get another perspective on your work.

32] Do some Acrobatics.

If you have to send a piece of work for printing (gasp), check, double check, and triple check everything in Adobe Acrobat Professional. Things you should look for are overprints, spot colours, trapping, and knock-outs. Doing this simple step thoroughly will save a ton of time, and money.

33] Add texture.

To give pieces a more organic feel, consider adding hand made gestures, and bringing a texture to your work. Don’t over do the organic additions, though, ultimately you should know when the work is complete.

34] Bring a little shade in.

Adding a few shadows, and darker areas can really enhance your work. These little touches can really create a flow in your work, especially if using vectors, as they bring a little smoothness to an otherwise sharp composition.

35] Take a Break. Then Stare Until your eyes hurt.

Once you are nearing completion of a project, try taking a break, going outside, and looking at other things- anything, for a few minutes. Then come back, and stare at the project again, for ages, looking for anything that could be changed for the better. Specifically look for colours that could be made stronger or weakened in images. In sites, look for the simple things that you would assume are correct, like links. There’s almost always at least one link where you have forgotten to put “http://” beforehand.

36] Stop. STOP!

Knowing when enough is enough is an essential skill. As time goes on you will get better at knowing when a piece is at its peak. Not every cake needs a cherry on top.

37] Print finishes.

Once your work leaves the computer, it doesn’t have to stop having any creative input. There’s a whole universe of ways you can dramatically enhance your work in print that are just impossible when it’s on screen. For example, you could try using metallic inks, foil blocking, embossing, and die-cutting. These effects can even be used together to create a really unique and inventive composition.

38] Prepare yourself.

When working with motion projects and animation you need to be prepared. Compressing clips early on in a project will eventually grow into a noticeably poor quality shot. Don’t compress anything until the final cut, and even then, keep a full, high quality version somewhere safe. Just in case.

39] Proof read.

They always said so at school: check your work before handing it in. Always ensure you re read work, and then pass it over to someone else and then someone else again. Get as many people to read your work as possible, ensure it all makes sense, and you’ll be fine.

40] Return to the brief.

Once you feel you’ve finished, give the project back to the team. Ensure everyone likes (maybe that’s a strong word, shall we say “doesn’t hate”) it. This is where you need to evaluate whether or not it meets the original brief, and if you have kept closely to your original idea.
What to avoid
Don’t dwell on your mistakes. Learn from them, and move on. (Heard that before?)

41] Never ever rely on the spell checker.

I really can’t emphasize this enough. Ensuring your text has no mistakes will not guarantee you more work, but letting work go out with mistakes will guarantee you being unpopular with your clients.

42] Work with clients, not against them.

Your clients may seem to be the ones holding you back, but they’re the ones that you need to listen to. Think of them as the ones who will lead you to the starting post and get you off in the right direction.

43] Re re read.

Again, it’s all about checking. Especially when writing emails, for example, don’t fill in the address bar until last. Not only does this avoid accidental sending of an unfinished email, but it also forces you to write it in full, and to think twice before sending it. Re read your own emails at least twice. You can’t just “undo” a sent email. If only…

44] Stick to the brief like honey sticks to toast.

A lot of companies try very hard, in fact too hard to win a pitch, and come across to potential clients as desperate. Just ensure you do what it says in the brief, and no more. This way you will save time and money.

45] Specifics.

Just ensure you are specific about what you are offering. If a client asks for something you are going to find difficult, make it clear that they will either have to give you more time, more money, or just leave it. Simple as that.

46] Do what you do best.

Don’t try to win clients who are going to demand more from you than you can offer. If you’re an amazing web designer, don’t go trying to dabble in professional 3D animation because it just won’t work. Stick to one thing, and show everyone else how awesome you are at it.

47] Keep a back up of everything.

Too often, I have lost files due to a disk error, or over written a folder by accident. These sorts of incidents are even more common with web design, when several members of a team have access to upload any files they want to the server. However, when running a site, you can also avoid loosing online files by ensuring everyone makes a copy of all the files on the server on a regular basis. You can even get scripts that will run a daily backup for you. For back up on your local machine, there’s already a plethora of options, but in OS X Leopard, the next version of the Mac OS, there will be a new back up utility called Time Machine, which will ensure everything is constantly backed up to an external hard disc. It can’t come soon enough.

48] Never assume anything.

Never *ass**u**me*: it will make an *ass* out of *u* and *me*. Too many times, people make assumptions and then kick themselves when it’s too late. For example, sending something off for printing, assuming the colours are all correct without a pre-print mock-up.

49] Justify yourself.

If you want to make a statement, or do something a little differently, many clients will say outright “No.” Try giving them a persuasive and valid reason for the decision, however, and they may feel more inclined to let you go with it.

50] Don’t over sell yourself.

Be up front and clear about what you are able to do. The last thing you want to do is make the client think you’re the best thing since sliced bread, and let them down at every stage of the project. Treat clients as they deserve. That’s all I’ll say.
Man I need a coffee.

You can give comment, Reviews or mail me at artistideablogspot@gmail.com Here you can also mail your work for add you work on this blog and our WebSite http://artistidea.co.cc
Read More ...

Latest Stories

Here you can see the 3D animation creatives this is Animation 3D Studio. You can give comment, Reviews or mail me at artistideablogspot@gmail.com Here you can also mail your work for add you work on this blog and our WebSite http://artistidea.co.cc
Read More ...

Latest Stories

There has always been a phase in our childhood when we enjoy drawing pictures of our favorite characters either in comics or in television… From our doodles to our rough sketches, our drawings have become a great part of our treasured childhood memories. Today, designers have found ways of turning sketches to realistic-like creations through the art of paper child.
Here, in this next post is a compilation of cool paper child design by artists around the web. The collection illustrates the unique ways a mere drawing can be turned into realistic artwork through photography. These anime designs can will surely inspire you to create one… Get a load of this Truly Creative Paper Child Art and be motivated!
You can give comment, Reviews or mail me at artistideablogspot@gmail.com Here you can also mail your work for add you work on this blog and our WebSite http://artistidea.co.cc
Read More ...

Latest Stories

My name is Rodney Pike. Most in the art world who know me, know me as rwpike, which is my username at several of my online portfolios and sites I’m a member of. I am from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. My work is a bit different than your average photo manipulator. I do all sorts of photo manipulation but photo-manipulated caricatures; political satire and caricature illustration is really where I’m at right now. I specialize in photo-manipulated caricatured illustrations perfect for magazines, books, posters etc. I also do caricature portraits. I have done and am accepting commissions. My clients include companies such as FHM Magazine, Tennis Magazine, Bauer Media and Miller Publishing Group. I am a member of the ISCA and NAPP. Check out my about.me web page.

You can give comment, Reviews or mail me at artistideablogspot@gmail.com Here you can also mail your work for add you work on this blog and our WebSite http://artistidea.co.cc
Read More ...

Latest Stories

Matte painting is a technique that filmmakers use to create backgrounds for scenes that can’t or don’t exist in real life. In the early days, matte paintings were actually painted onto glass. Today, modern filmmakers use digital applications such as Photoshop to produce the backdrops that they need. We have published many matte painting tutorials on this site meant for intermediate and advanced users. This tutorial is part of a series of tutorials that we will be publishing on this meant for those of you who may be relatively new to Photoshop or matte painting in general.
In today’s tutorial, Matte Painting 101: Create a Devastating Tidal Wave in Photoshop we will give New York City a break and will destroy London with a devastating tidal wave. Let’s get started!




You can give comment, Reviews or mail me at artistideablogspot@gmail.com Here you can also mail your work for add you work on this blog and our WebSite http://artistidea.co.cc
Read More ...

Latest Stories

Matte painting is a technique that filmmakers use to create backgrounds for scenes that can’t or don’t exist in real life. In the early days, matte paintings were actually painted onto glass. Today, modern filmmakers use digital applications such as Photoshop to produce the backdrops that they need. We have published many matte painting tutorials on this site meant for intermediate and advanced users. This tutorial is part of a series of tutorials that we will be publishing on this meant for those of you who may be relatively new to Photoshop or matte painting in general.

Today’s tutorial, Matte Painting 101: Meteor Impacts will teach you how to destroy a city with meteors. In this tutorial you will learn how to paint streams of smoke, and break up buildings. Let’s get started!

Download Now Source File

Read More ...

Latest Stories

In this tutorial we will demonstrate how to use Illustrator and Photoshop to create character designs for the Boomrock Saints. Let’s get started!

You can give comment, Reviews or mail me at artistideablogspot@gmail.com Here you can also mail your work for add you work on this blog and our WebSite http://artistidea.co.cc
Read More ...

Latest Stories

Customizing your ride can be a lot of fun for those of you who are into that sort of thing. In today’s tutorial we will demonstrate how to create some custom rims for your ride and then show what they would look like if overlaid on top of an image of a car. Let’s get started!

You can give comment, Reviews or mail me at artistideablogspot@gmail.com Here you can also mail your work for add you work on this blog and our WebSite http://artistidea.co.cc
Read More ...

Latest Stories

In this tutorial, our Photoshop Maestro is going to fit an entire oceanscape into a tiny little (magic) bottle!! Techniques here are pretty advanced, so we hope you'll be able to tough it out with us as we fit an entire ocean complete with dolphins, rough seas and a boat to boot!

We're going to use a lot of images this time around in our tutorial. So go ahead and prepare these images:

You can give comment, Reviews or mail me at artistideablogspot@gmail.com Here you can also mail your work for add you work on this blog and our WebSite http://artistidea.co.cc
Read More ...

Latest Stories

In this tutorial you will learn how to draw realistic classic pen using only Photoshop technique, without any stock image. Mainly following steps in this tutorial you will learn how to simple colored shapes add 3d look using Burn tool and adding highlights. You also can use this image as icon for your projects. This can be your begging guide to learn more deeply Adobe Photoshop drawing techniques.

You can give comment, Reviews or mail me at artistideablogspot@gmail.com Here you can also mail your work for add you work on this blog and our WebSite http://artistidea.co.cc
Read More ...

Latest Stories


GraphicRiver - 50 Photo Effects - Curl & Shadows | 12.54 Mb
50 Photo Effects – Curl & Shadows is a package of 50 actions. Creates curl and shadows for photos or any image.
50 Actions. * Click above to show all effects | Curl and shadow effect | Works with photo or image – any resolution | The effect is applied rapidly | Requires Photoshop CS3 , CS4 or CS5 | Works in any language




Orignal Content Provider - Heroturko.com

Download free GraphicRiver - 50 Photo Effects - Curl & Shadows:

Read More ...

Latest Stories

Different images combination require different method to combine. There are thousands of image combination on the internet, however, it is not easy to find a easy and straight forward one. Here this one will give you some ideas on the image combination. You can give comment, Reviews or mail me at artistideablogspot@gmail.com Here you can also mail your work for add you work on this blog and our WebSite http://artistidea.co.cc

Download Tutorial
Read More ...

Latest Stories


In this tutorial you will learn how to create a burning girl with fire effect. We will come through easy steps to create this cool effect using only default filters, color and brushes of photoshop. You can give comment, Reviews or mail me at artistideablogspot@gmail.com Here you can also mail your work for add you work on this blog and our WebSite http://artistidea.co.cc

Read More ...

Latest Stories


As you know, each month, we round up some of the best Photoshop-related content from around the web. This month, there were some excellent Photoshop tutorials and articles to choose from so please take a moment to review our favorites from June 2011.

You can give comment, Reviews or mail me at artistideablogspot@gmail.com Here you can also mail your work for add you work on this blog and our WebSite http://artistidea.co.cc
Read More ...

Latest Stories


Click Full View for whole tutorial

Most of the credit for this has to go to Greg Martin [link] for the techniques for highlights/shadows and atmosphere.
Also a big thank you to every other space artist I have asked questions of, for everyone that commented on my work to help me improve, and to the people who suggested I make this.

This tutorial assusmes some basic photoshop and space art experience. If you get stuck or have any questions about any step I'm always happy to reply to any notes I get.

You can give comment, Reviews or mail me at artistideablogspot@gmail.com Here you can also mail your work for add you work on this blog and our WebSite http://artistidea.co.cc
Read More ...