Business tips from 4 creative pros who are crushing it

tipsfromtop

As I mentioned before in this post, recently I interviewed 9 amazing veteran freelancers, each on a different challenging topic they have personal experience excelling in. From hiring employees to overcoming self-doubt, here are bits of the wonderful information four of them had to share (more coming soon): On finding your niche and marketing to it Veteran marketing and SEO specialist Becky Livingston (interview here), founder of Penheel Marketing, shares her story about identifying a need in the marketplace and using

Why you should design your next website in one weekend

weekend project

Just about anything worthwhile can be created in one weekend. That was basically the message I got from a recent Fizzle interview with Gumroad founder, Sahil Lavingia. Sahil used to work as a designer at Pinterest and left that gig to start his own venture: Gumroad. Coined as the “PayPal killer,” Gumroad combines extremely simple product sales interface with amazing (and simple) design. So it’s fair to say Sahil knows something about design and business. Gumroad has already been incredibly successful. And

Why I never design the home page first (and which page I design before anything else)

why i never design the home page first

I’m in the middle of a huge redesign for a web site that gets hundreds of thousands (and sometimes millions) of monthly visits. It’s a big deal. And it’s pretty stressful. But if you’ve ever done any sort of redesign (maybe you’ve redesigned your online portfolio?), you know that it’s also exhilarating. And the best projects seem to be just that: exhilarating, yet exhausting. That’s how I know I’m doing work that matters and work that I love. As I

6 Places to find creative inspiration without wifi

creativity without wifi

Designers and freelancers in general need a little help staying inspired from time to time. We all have places we like to browse while brainstorming; you never know what’s going to spark the perfect idea for you. The internet is a wonderful resource for creative inspiration. It gives you access to more information in one place than any other medium. It also has a huge flaw. It’s home to more distractions than any other form of inspiration. Because so many

Why you’re getting responsive design all wrong (and 8 ways to rock mobile)

Young woman using a tablet on the sofa

Remember those silly mobile themes that used to be popular a couple of years ago? You know what I’m talking about… Awful, ain’t it? This is beyond me … why would anyone put such a thing on their site? There’s no branding whatsoever, it’s ugly, and gives you no continuity across various platforms. In other words, if someone visited your site on mobile and then on desktop, they wouldn’t be able to guess it’s the same site. Thankfully, those mobile

Why you’re designing for the wrong audience (and how to fix it)

designing for wrong audience

Do you have a dribble account, share all your work to social networks or constantly ask for critiques of your work from other designers? Non of those things are bad in and of themselves. They could however be symptoms of a much bigger problem. Designing for the wrong audience. We all want to do work we are proud of. Earning praise from other designers, who might offer a more educated opinion, can be especially affirming. However, if you let that

15 Workflow tips that took my design business to the next level

[img]Workflow tips for freelancers[img]

As busy freelancers, time is one of your most valuable assets. The more time you can save, the more money you can make. However; you can’t just spend less time on your client work and let the quality suffer, so how do you save time? The key is workflow. The more efficient your workflow the more client work you can get done. By streamlining the entire process, you can be sure that all of your time spent will have huge

How to give constructive criticism without being a jerk

critique without being a jerk graphic design blender

Have you ever been asked to critique a fellow designer’s project that needs more than a little bit of work? You don’t want to come off as snooty or rude and you certainly don’t want to hurt their feelings, but you do need to make it clear that there are several improvements that could be made. And while your mind automatically wants to mess around with it on your own, it’s not your project, so what you’re really looking to