Category Archives: Graphics

Unleashing The Full Potential Of Symbols In Sketch



No matter whether you are designing a whole design system or just a couple of screens, symbols in Sketch will help you keep your file organized and will save you a lot of time in the long run.

Unleashing The Full Potential Of Symbols In Sketch

In this article, I’ll share with you a few best practices and tricks to help you unleash symbols’ full potential.

The post Unleashing The Full Potential Of Symbols In Sketch appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

Source: Smashing Magazine

9 Graphic Design Trends You Need To Be Aware of in 2017


Here are 2017’s graphic design trends you need to follow. We are covering packaging trends, typography trends, layouts and even cinemagrahs.

2017 is the year we return to the organic roots and we will see a return to the natural. In terms of colors, the start has been given by Pantone (as every year, in fact), who has crowned the color for 2017 as Greenery, based on it’s meaning of new beginning, freshness and environmentalism.

Manifesting as a “fresh and zesty yellow-green shade that evokes the first days of spring”, Greenery envelops the notion of breathing, reinvigorating and appreciating the great outdoors.

That said, let’s take a closer look at the graphic design trends that define 2017. Most of them influence both print and web design, but some of them are just for the web.


Bright, Bold and Vibrant colors


In the past few years, many designers have used safe and easy to digest color schemes, in order to create very clean and controlled designs. We saw many lights and neutral colors like white, grays and black dominating the layouts. But in 2017 we expect bright, vibrant and bold colors. This trend has started earlier in 2016, through a variety of design elements, but it’s expected to really pick up its speed this year. As Pantone crowned the color of the year as Greenery, we expect to see the designers using more colors found in nature and intensifying them. With photography, the trend is to use bold and saturated images.


In terms of graphic design, this doesn’t mean that should be a color revolution in every company. But using bright colors with traditional neutral backgrounds, companies can give their branding a fresh new look without deviating too far from what they made great.      


Color transitions


Staying in the same register, the color transitions is one of the biggest design trends right now. Started in 2016 and rising quickly after, this trend is everywhere, from logo to buttons or picture overlays. As some of the big brands decided to change their logos and images from flat color to multi-colored transitions, we are expecting to see more companies adopting this trend, both for print and web design.    




Pattern and geometric shapes


This trend started in 2016 and it will definitely also continue in 2017. As flat design was a very welcome addendum to the graphics last year, helping to simplify the visuals and improve user experience, we expect to see it growing and expanding this year. I’ve stated at the beginning of this post that in 2017 will be a return to the natural, therefore, I’ll expect to see more nature-inspired patterns, like marble, precious stones and plants. Painterly patterns contrasted with simple typography will also bring a crafts vibe to printed media.




For packaging and brand design, bringing together the best qualities of flat design and pattern will create vibrant, colorful products, which feel both ultra-contemporary and artistic.

On the other hand, the pattern doesn’t have to be just about multiple colors or symmetry. Just bringing more visual to graphics using organic line pattern, will make the designs feel completely on-trend this year.





For those who love simplicity and functionality given by the minimalism, here is the good news: tracing its roots back to the early part of the 20th century, and for some, even further, minimalism is today more popular as ever. As the intentional white space means more breathability and reduced focal points, the simple way of communication of the message through design has led to adoption of the minimalism in many brand and design trends.  Inspired by Scandinavian design, ultra-minimal typography and layouts will still feel cutting-edge this year, and brands who opt for this visual approach will appear elegant and refined. If you need a touch of color, you should consider adding a subtle metallic foiling as the only embellishment you need, while keeping your palette restricted and strong.






Modern retro


By its very definition, modern-retro has been around for a while. Modern flare added to retro designs, typefaces and color palettes makes an interesting fusion of old and new. The key in this trend is both authenticities, as well as simplifying and modernizing any particular element that stood out from any time in the past. In 2016 we saw the popularity of modern-retro designs rising and finding its own way onto logo designs, print layout, web and packaging design. In terms of colors, maybe we’ll see some changes, meaning shifting from the muted browns and grays of 2016’s most vintage designs to candy colors. But for sure, the preference for this graphic design trend will continue to grow in 2017 and we haven’t seen all yet.retro-packaging-design


Modular layouts


Functioning to break up a text and put it into manageable chunks, modular isn’t a quiet new trend, but it’s popularity has increased in the last past years. Regardless if we are talking about print or web design, most times, using a long block of text is boring and you risk losing the readers. Especially for the web, the graphic designers have figured out that making the information more manageable makes more people interact with it. The modular design is not just a great management tool, but it also can look professional when it’s done well. We expect to see more modular layouts this year, both in print and web design.


modular design trends



Bold photography and sleek text


At this moment, this trend is pretty much a staple in the world of graphic designers, because the mix between bold photography and sleek text communicates a clear message without boring the audience.  “Bold and sleek” works very well both for people with a short attention span, as well as for those who don’t want to spend too much time looking for the main information and get straight to the point. If they are done well, the photography and text tend to work together and create some great contrast and brilliant borders, streaming class and excitement.     

This combination works great for display ads, social media promotions, and graphics where a small amount of information needs to be conveyed instantly.
typography trends 2017

Typography trends bold




Cinemagraphs are an incredible, simple and effective answer to one of the marketing’s toughest problem: time. As marketers should do and use every possible tool to grab the audience’s attention in a very short and exciting way, cinemagraphs are the perfect tool for doing this. They aren’t the regular gifs we see all around the web. Cinemagraphs are still images with minor element moving in them. This technique makes simply photos look more realistic and bring them to life. With more and more competition between marketers, we expect to see cinemagraphs coming to screens in 2017.



cinemagraphs design trends


Material design

Material design may be the biggest and boldest of the design trends of this year. Google has created this style guide trying to simplify the way designers design and users interact with the Internet. The core concepts of this trend are “material as a metaphor; bold, graphic, intentional; and motion provides meaning.”

This means the visual aesthetic communicates clearly with the user. By drawing inspiration from real-world materials—particularly paper and ink— the designs are grounded in reality, yet lightweight and minimalistic. Paper is tactile, casts shadows, but is also incredibly flexible, so, designing with these principles in mind, you’re weaving together the fabric of the Internet and add depth to your design.

By using bold colors, contrast and typography in your design, you should guide the user’s behavior and influence your audience to act the way you desire. Google’s Material Design aesthetic is very similar to Flat Design 2.0, but it takes intentionality to another level.




Have we missed something? Let us know in the comments bellow.
Also, check these awesome web design trends to be aware of in 2017.


Read More at 9 Graphic Design Trends You Need To Be Aware of in 2017

Source: Web Design Ledger

The 25 Most Creative Valentine’s Day Ads Design

First things first, I would like to say Happy Valentine’s Day to all the couples out there. For those of you who don’t have a significant other in your life, Happy Independence Day!
Valentine’s Day is certainly a celebration that we are very fond of. What started as a fertility celebration in Ancient Rome, now has become a 448 million dollars celebration where people around the world are eating approximately 58 million pounds (263.083.57 Kg) of chocolate. Now, major corporations and retailers are taking full advantage of this pink and chocolatey monster Valentine’s Day has become, and they are all fighting for a piece of exposure.
Luckily for us, this means that people with more money than Romania’s GDP are going all in and spend tons of money on creative ad campaigns.

You probably don’t have their kind of money but this Valentine’s Day ads might be just the right thing you need in order to inspire you this Halloween.

So without further ado, here are the 25 most creative Valentine’s Day Ads Design.


Dom Francisco




Virgin mobile






Up & Down Apparel


Kolner Zoo



















Conrad treasury








Wellington Zoo




La Benedicta






Of course, there are more creative Valentine’s Day ads out there and you probably saw some. If you think you can pin point a creative ad that we haven’t mentioned, drop a comment bellow and we’ll get it featured.

Read More at The 25 Most Creative Valentine’s Day Ads Design

Source: Web Design Ledger

Free Fonts With Personality And Style



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.

30 Free Fonts With Personality And Style

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.

The post Free Fonts With Personality And Style appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

Source: Smashing Magazine

The Ultimate Guide To Color Contrast.

The colors you choose while designing a website, poster or any other type of image will have a huge impact on whether or not the overall design is successful. After all, there is a lot of psychology behind the colors that people are attracted to, and designers need to incorporate this into everything they do.

Color contrast plays a very valuable role, but it is often overlooked, undervalued and misunderstood. To avoid this problem, you must learn more about color contrast, including how and why you should use it. Once you go beyond the basics of knowing that red and orange aren’t good colors to create contrast but black and white are, you can begin to develop an enhanced aesthetic that will please clients and viewers.


Why is Color Contrast So Useful?

Color contrast, in a nutshell, provides visual intrigue and keeps viewers interested. Consider for a moment how boring it would be if an entire poster was made from one color or only included shades from the same color family. Although there are some instances when this does work from an artistic perspective, it’s not an approach that is likely to grab someone’s attention when they’re perusing store shelves, looking at movie posters or surfing the web. Therefore, it’s wise to use contrasting colors whenever appropriate.

For example, think about the classic Coca-Cola can. If the entire thing was red, it wouldn’t stand out nearly as much as it does. The white writing truly pops off of the red background, which grabs attention and is instantly recognizable. This contrast is visually stunning, and it stands out from its competitors.

How to Best Use Color Contrast

The color choices you make must depend largely on the format that you’re using. The Coca-Cola can provides a great way to explain this process. In a physical product such as a can of soda, the red background works. It also stands out well in print advertising, on TV commercials and much more. But what if you were to attempt to design a website with these same colors?

To put it as bluntly as possible, a solid red website page background with white text on top would be atrocious. A full red background will work, though, if you put a text box on top of it that has a lighter color such as white or tan. From there, you’d most likely want to use black text in the text box to create another layer of contrast. Not only will this approach be more eye-catching but it will also enable people to read the text. Remember: black text on red is very difficult to read.

Other examples of contrasting color combinations that won’t work well on the web and may also be almost indecipherable in other formats include light green on medium green, green on red and red on blue. Instead, consider using white on green and yellow or white on blue. If you must put text on a solid red background, it’s best to use white just like Coca-Cola.

Of course, color contrast isn’t always used to call attention to text. If you’re looking to put two different contrasting colors together to draw the eye to something specific on the page, you can choose between dramatically different colors and the more subtle contrast that is caused by changes in shade, tint and saturation.

Trip Advisor does a nice job of using contrasting colors and white space to direct each user’s eyes to the most important aspects of their search results. The mixture of green and yellow is pleasing to the eye, and they kept the classic blue hyperlink color to make it easy for people to know where to click to learn more. Even better, they chose a bold yellow with black text for their “show prices” button, which stands out so much that people are virtually certain to engage with this call-to-action.   


Color-Blindness: What Every Designer Needs to Know

Approximately 8 percent of men worldwide suffer from some form of color-blindness. This condition is much rarer in women, but 1 out of every 17 people with color-blindness is female. In total, 4.5 percent of the world’s population does not see all colors as the rest of the world does.

This may seem like a small enough percentage that you wouldn’t cater to their needs. However, the reality is that in the U.K. alone, 2.7 million people are colorblind. This is something designers really need to consider, especially if they’re creating something that is targeted at men.

Red/green blindness is the most common version of color-blindness. What this means is that the red and green elements of any color will not have their true appearance to these individuals. For instance, a person with red/green blindness will perceive purple as blue. This happens because they’re unable to see the red tone that helps differentiate purple from blue.   

As you can imagine, this makes the process of choosing the perfect color contrast even more difficult. If you were to choose green as your primary background color or even as a font color, 4.5 percent of your intended viewing audience may not be able to accurately see everything. They may not even be able to read the words very well depending on the hue you chose and how severe their color-blindness is.


The Bottom Line

Ultimately, a color contrast should make both elements stand out, but especially the element that is most important. In other words, if you’re putting text on a colorful background or image, make sure that the words are easy to see and read. Keep your audience in mind and try to steer clear of color combinations that would make the final result difficult for people with color-blindness.

As always, take the time to check your designs from different browsers and devices. Additionally, don’t hesitate to ask a friend, colleague or family member to look at your work with fresh eyes and provide feedback.  


For some color contrast inspiration, check out this list of beatifully designed landign pages.

Read More at The Ultimate Guide To Color Contrast.

Source: Web Design Ledger

10 of the Best Modern Poster Designs to Inspire Creativity

It Follows Poster

Posters offer a diverse canvas for graphic designers, and some of the very best are not only beautifully designed but also inspiring and thought-provoking. There are hundreds of stunning poster designs that are instantly eye-catching, but we’ve narrowed this list down to a few of the most intriguing examples from the current decade. Whether you prefer to be bold or understated, you’re certain to find something here that will get your creative juices flowing.

1. Stranger Things Poster

Stranger Things Poster

“Stranger Things” became a hugely popular show on Netflix thanks in part to the captivating poster that promoted it. Designer Kyle Lambert was able to expertly capture many of the most important elements and characters in a way that draws the viewer in without providing any spoilers.

One of the most brilliant things about this poster is that it provides a throwback to the 1980s style, which is the perfect complement for the feel of the show. Combine that with extremely accurate renderings of the actors and the overall emotive quality of the piece, and it’s no wonder that viewers flocked to Netflix.

2. Maze Runner: Scorch Trials Poster

Maze Runner Poster

Movie poster designers have the enormous task of making something stand out in a very crowded environment. After all, posters are everywhere at your local movie theater, and that can easily make them blend together unless a unique feature grabs your attention. “Maze Runner: Scorch Trials” quickly amassed blockbuster status in 2015, and this visually appealing poster almost certainly helped make that happen.

The use of negative space works extremely well here, and it also contrasts perfectly with the test tube shape in the middle. These subtle clues to the plot points may not even be picked up by most casual viewers, but they showcase a lot of skill on the designer’s part.

3. Silver Surfer Poster

Metropolis Poster

Silver surfer Poster

If imitation is truly the sincerest form of flattery, then all of the designers who influenced Retro Heroes creator Grégoire Guillemin should definitely feel flattered. For example, the classic “Metropolis” poster was clearly the inspiration for this retro rendering of comic book character Silver Surfer. The poster draws you in because of the similarities, but it’s also set apart by the font choice and bold red color that frames two sides of the image.

4. It Follows Poster

It Follows Poster


“It Follows” surprised box office prediction experts by not only receiving rave critical reviews but also becoming a huge indie hit that brought in more than six times its miniscule budget. The strength of what started as a limited release is mostly attributed to word of mouth praise, but the film’s movie posters also deserve a lot of credit.

Graphic designer Akiko Stehrenberger draws viewers in instantly with the compelling usage of eyes staring straight at you. The foggy blank space is an intriguing addition because it makes the identity of the “It” a huge mystery, and this results in the viewer imagining the most terrible things possible.

5. Air New Zealand Poster
Air New Zeland Poster

Retro designs have been popular for several years, but this usually means creating a new poster that has a retro styled image. Air New Zealand decided to go back to the past in 2016 for the 75th anniversary by rereleasing old posters instead that help showcase the history of aviation. This particular design features great usage of Technicolor for a vibrant appearance that makes flying look beautiful and glamorous.

6. Cross River Gorilla Poster(Endangered Species Line)

Cross River Gorilla Poster

There are more than 16,000 animals that are currently threatened with extinction, and the Cross River Gorilla is high on the priority list. With a population of approximately only 300 left on Earth, it’s important to conserve their habitat and to raise awareness of their plight.

Artist Sean Duggan decided to utilize a minimal design with a retro feel to put people face to face with an image of two of these gorillas. The decision to have a mother and baby gorilla looking straight at the viewer makes it hard not to feel sympathetic for their plight.

7. San Francisco Tourism Poster

San Francisco Tourism Poster

A tourism poster needs to depict at least one aspect of the area in question, and it should also intrigue and excite people. The Discover San Francisco poster may seem a bit cluttered at first, but it’s actually quite brilliant how the designer turned each letter into a recognizable part of the city’s charm and daily life. From the deeply slanted hilly roads to the intersection of Haight and Ashbury, all of the most tourism friendly places are represented.

8. The Blue Umbrella Poster

“The Blue Umbrella” is a short film from Pixar that was released with “Monsters University.” To promote their animated piece, Pixar produced this mesmerizing poster that easily captures attention. The umbrella itself is very kid-friendly with its happy expression. However, it’s the lines of the rain drops that draw us in every time we look at this poster. The implied motion is brilliantly executed, as is the juxtaposition between the color and typical mood of the word blue with the contented expression of the umbrella.  

9. The Foundation of Arts Ring of Fire Exhibit Poster


The Foundation of Arts Ring of Fire Exhibit Poster

This poster design wins big points for being fun, using a bold color to stand out and showcasing an extremely literal interpretation of its subject matter. As a poster for a music retrospective exhibition for Johnny Cash, it makes perfect sense to refer to one of his most famous songs. Bringing it to life by having a figure appear to be literally falling into a burning ring of fire was brilliant enough, but having that ring be the hole in Cash’s guitar really boosts the impact of this piece. Adding in the vintage feel and the eye-catching red background provided the proverbial icing on the cake.

10. The Secret of 4°C Poster

The Secret of 4°C Poster


Posters can be designed to sell something, to raise awareness, to motivate or to explore a graphic designer’s personal interests. The particular piece is educational and visually appealing. At a first glance, you might not realize that the image in the middle of the poster is a dewdrop.

Water achieves its heaviest state when it reaches 4° Celsius, and artist Jongwon Won used the gradient scale in an attempt to depict and explore the many stages that water goes through just before or after this specific temperature. Even without knowing this explanation, the design, use of color and well-placed white space is captivating.


There are, of course, thousands of other designs we could have chosen, but these 10 are a nice representative sample of some of the best work that has been produced during this decade. There are clearly some common themes between most of these pieces, and that’s a reflection on modern trends. Allow these to inspire you, and perhaps you’ll be the one to spark the next massive trend in poster graphic design.  



Read More at 10 of the Best Modern Poster Designs to Inspire Creativity

Source: Web Design Ledger

Neon Text Effect Photoshop Tutorial

In this tutorial, we’re going to learn how to create a neon text effect in Adobe Photoshop.

Download Adobe Photoshop.

Read More at Neon Text Effect Photoshop Tutorial

Source: Web Design Ledger

Designing A Responsive Music Player In Sketch (Part 2)



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.

Designing A Responsive Music Player In Sketch (Part 2)

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.

The post Designing A Responsive Music Player In Sketch (Part 2) appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

Source: Smashing Magazine

Super Deal: Mega Snow & Winter Bundle from Feingold Design – only $11!

This bundle contains 9 high-quality design products for your perfect winter time. Simulating photorealistic snow or fog for photography, web or print design has never been that easy. Various snow objects as well as 16 artistic snowflakes with transparent backgrounds will add a special touch to your Christmas and winter designs. The pack of winter photos and a frozen text effect rounds everything up, and is perfect for social media posts, bloggers or web shop owners.


  • Real Snow Brushes for Photoshop CS1+: This high resolution brush for Photoshop was created to paint falling and lying snow or photorealistic frozen effects. The snow flakes were cut out of real photographic material and can be used to create quite realistic snowscapes.
  • Real Snow Photo Overlays for Photoshop CS4+: Just drag one of the 4 different snow-layer folders on top of your photo. Each of the 4 preconfigured overlays consist of 8 different layers to control the amount and depth of snow.
  • Fog Effect for Photoshop CS4+: Realistic and lossless high quality fog effect prepared to fit for portrait, landscape, architecture or panorama photos. Easy to apply, just drag & drop the adjustment layer folder on top of your photo.
  • Frozen Text Effect for Photoshop CS4+:The Photoshop document provides simple adjustment settings for text layers to create frozen looking text. The effect is prepared for dark and bright backgrounds and comes fine-tuned in 7 different sizes (6pt to 180pt).
  • Snow Line Elements and Icicles : 27 photographic high-resolution snow line elements. Perfect to add more realistic snow to your web design, poster, greeting- or post card layouts. Cut out and prepared for easy use. Delivered in transparent PNG-files (38 files).
  • Seamless Snow Texture (1 JPG image file & PS Action): This seamless high-resolution snow texture was made to generate large snow surfaces. One JPG-file, 4717 × 3146 pixel, 300dpi. Including Photoshop Actions to generate large surfaces.
  • Abstract Snowflakes (16 transparent PNG image files): Want something special on your Christmas or business cards? This bundle includes 16 transparent snowflakes you can work with. Each flake is 2000 x 2000 pixel large (about 15 x 15 cm in print at 300 dpi).
  • Abstract Snowflake Generator for Photoshop CS4+: Paint your own individual snowflakes with the help of this PSD-file. You only paint one-twelfth of the snowflake and the Smart Object does the rest for you. Just paint with brushes into the Smart Object to get your 2000 x 2000 pixel snowflakes directly.
  • Winter & Snow Photo Pack (36 JPG image files): 36 winter photos matching a wide variety of snow related topics.

Check all the previews here.

Normally, this mega vector collection sells for $642 but for a limited time only, you can get Mega Snow & Winter Bundle for just $11 – That’s a monstrous savings of 98% off the regular price.Go here to get this awesome deal!

Read More at Super Deal: Mega Snow & Winter Bundle from Feingold Design – only $11!

Source: Web Design Ledger

Illustrating Animals With 13 Circles: A Tutorial And Drawing Challenge



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?

Illustrating Animals With 13 Circles: A Tutorial And Drawing Challenge

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.

The post Illustrating Animals With 13 Circles: A Tutorial And Drawing Challenge appeared first on Smashing Magazine.

Source: Smashing Magazine