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An Introduction to Structural Typography

Typography plays an important role in design. To communicate a brands message effectively, designers have to spend time understanding the nuances associated with each typeface. There are a lot of variables that can affect the overall readability and legibility of a typeface. Rhythm is one of them. Just like music, text can flow like a symphony or be scrappy and disjointed like a persistent scratchy sound from an old vinyl record. A well-designed text with harmonious rhythm is easier to read than a scrappy one. There are two types of rhythm in typography – horizontal and vertical.

Both affect the overall reading experience. Horizontal rhythm effects readability whereas vertical rhythm effects legibility this, in turn, impacts the overall visual hierarchy. To make the act of reading effortless, designers should pay attention to a set of rules that can help improve the overall reading experience of the user. To help make typography work for you, here are a few practical recommendations that you can use in your projects.

1. Selecting a typeface

Start your project by selecting a typeface. This is an important decision, so make sure to take your time to find one that works for your project. The look and feel of the typeface you chose will have a strong impact on the quality of your design. Once you have chosen a typeface, take the time to learn it. Modern typefaces come with a variety of styles – play with different weights and styles. Once you have mastered the typeface, you should be able to use it in special contexts — like on a button or labels.

2. Use no more than 3 font types at one time

When combining fonts, it is better to stick to 2 or 3 types. If they are all placed in the vicinity of each other, they are going to make your site look busy and unstructured. Font combinations should create a contrast when paired together. Here is an example of a harmonious pairing. The text on the right, however, doesn’t quite work as well as the one of the left. Mostly because the one on the bottom overshadows its counterpart.

3. Font Sizing

Text sizes impact the overall reading experience. When the text is too small, the users have to strain their eye to read. As a result, most of the information will be skipped. When the text is too big, it poses a different set of problems. So set the font size to a comfortable size to ensure maximum readability. Modular scale technique can help you find the best font size for the project you are working on.

4. Horizontal and Vertical Rhythm

Letter spacing can have a huge impact on the legibility of words. When it is not done right, it can have a negative impact on the overall reading experience as it makes it hard to be deciphered by the brain. Kerning aka the space between letters is another issue that makes the words hard to read. To set a vertical rhythm, you have to have a basic rhythmic unit. This is called line height. The block of text needs to visually connect with the text underneath it, this is what we want to achieve with vertical rhythm and visual hierarchy

5. Mind the Gap

The text is easier to read when it is left justified. The vertical edge to the left assists readers in reading the content from left to right. It is also important to look for gaps to avoid having a single word at the bottom.

It is also important to choose a typeface that works well on various devices. Try to avoid cursive scripts that have uneven rounded edges. This makes the text difficult to read on various devices.

6. Define your goals

When you begin a typography project, it is important to establish design goals. By defining goals ahead of time you are able to create a structure with the help of design principles. Design principles are abstract concepts that can help communicate the look and feel of your work. Setting clearly defined boundaries can help you narrow down a typeface from a plethora of typestyles. For example, typography that is clean and modern should look and feel different from a type that is stable and trustworthy. Different typefaces evoke different emotional responses in the user. So when choosing a type, having a clear understanding of the objective will help you find a suitable one.

7. Content Hierarchy

Once you have defined your goal, the next step should be reserved for understanding the content layout and hierarchy. If you have to design and don’t know what the content is, then it is still better to use a readable text than a lorem ipsum placeholder. Go through the copy and layout different instance of every unique type of content.

Picking typography is hard. It helps to lay them out in an artboard matrix to see how different layout combinations look like. Once you have the content layout, take time to look at the different options and compare one to its neighbor and see which one adheres to your brand objectives/principles. This should help you narrow down the typeface that can represent the look and feel you are going for.

Crafting good typography takes practice. Typography should not only be readable, but it should also make you feel. Designers should take the time to master this skill and this is only possible through daily practice. The more typefaces and styles you try out, the more you will understand different combinations and how best to use it in your project. We hope you take this practical guide to make your process better and faster.

  Image Inq   Jan 29, 2019   Design   0 Comment Read More

Best Visual Design Trends of 2019

It is important for brands to have a distinct style. To create an effective brand, designers must keep a close watch on trends that populate the marketplace. They have to be able to get more creative with how they display their products and services. By studying trends, designers can get a better understanding of what the consumers naturally gravitate towards to. Trends are incredibly difficult to spot at the time but they become a lot more visible years after they have happened.

We have gathered a list of predictions from companies like Adobe and Shutterstock to help you get a better understanding of visual trends coming your way this year.

Color Trends 2019

Color can help communicate ideas and give life and meaning to everything we see. Its power to invoke an emotional response in the viewer can help form a visceral connection between the object and the viewer. Shutterstock gathers data every year by looking at what the users are downloading most frequently. Keep scrolling down to get an in-depth look at some of the best color trends from around the world.

UFO Green, Plastic Pink, and Proton Purple seem to be the most popular choices to look out for this year. UFO greens bright and neon like quality seem to exude an otherworldly quality while plastic pink, on the other hand, has a sharp intensity while proton purple can represent the imminent change in our daily lives. On a global level, Japan’s pink, Brazile’s green and Germany’s Aquamarine where some of the stand out colors this year.

Branding and Design 2019

Colorful, loud and plastic trends are coming back again this year. The pinks and purples from the 1990s are making a huge comeback too. Another trend to catch on to is 80’s opulence. Animal patterns, gold chains, and other mixed media collage prints dominate the market.

Languages of Protest is another trend that will pick up momentum this year. This, paired with bright and bold colors, can represent and showcase a wide variety of ideas that are centered around politics, media, and culture.

Creative Democracy is all about catching on to the creative trends on social media. Brands are tapping into this trend by going after user-generated content. Creative Democracy is about bright colors and diverse subjects that move people.

It is important for brands to be able to instill a sense of trust in their consumers. It is important for them to be able to state their values and have a commitment to transparency. To be able to reach a wide variety of customers, they should be able to incorporate their values into their messaging. This will help them become more ethically aware of themselves.

Abstract Art

Paper cut-outs, unpolished designs, and rough-edged layer and grain textures define the raw look that easily stands out in the midst of polished, pixel-perfect designs. Suggested shapes and objects have replaced well-defined and photo-realistic elements. Shutterstock predicted that 3D patterns are going to be huge this year.

Playful patterns, bright colors and raw home crafted styles have made a comeback. The sheer amount of liveliness of colors and elements show us just how loud and playful designs can be.

Photography and Graphics

This year’s photography trends are going to be inspired by art history and famous paintings. Adobe stock has predicted that there is going to be a lot of nature photography coming our way this year.

With technology seeping into our daily lives, it is becoming increasingly important to surround us with photographs that evoke feelings of well-being and peace. Wellness is another trend that has continued to rise in popularity this year. You would be seeing a lot of graphics related to yoga, mandalas, chakras and other elements related to this theme.

Complex, futuristic Imagery

Futurism is another trend to look out for this upcoming year. The use of AR and VR has created a necessity for futuristic imagery. It celebrates the technological advances of the current year and also draws inspiration from last years futuristic landscapes.

Minimalist Photographs

Photographers are experimenting with minimalism and meaning. We will be seeing more imagery with elements and metaphors that will inspire meaningful discussions this year. By experimenting with form, function, meaning, and metaphors, photographers are taking on projects that contribute to deeper thinking and introspection.

Environmental Awareness

Brands are being more aware of their environment and their impact on a global level. On a survey taken this year, we found out that about 9 in 10 millennials would switch to brands associated with a cause. The visuals like the one below, showing the true state of our environment is bound to inspire change.


With the emergence of 3D design, type designers have started experimenting with typefaces that have depth and dimension. Vector-based lettering and whimsical typography is a trend that we will be seeing more of this year. Serifs are making a come too. If you are using serifs for your web projects, make sure to use fonts with thick strokes. This will help easily differentiate the ascenders, descenders, serifs, and ligatures. Making the whole sentence a lot easier to read. Above all serif styles help add a sense of character and charm to the overall design, making them a good choice for your web projects.

We live in times of fast-paced visual change, to keep up with the ever growing needs of the economy, brands have to find ways to find visuals that are able to reach their customers. The purpose of learning about trends and their role in shaping the visual culture we see today has never been more relevant. We hope that this year’s predictions will give you a preview of the visual trends that will shape our visual landscape and inspire messy cultural conversations about values and how we express our individuality.

  Image Inq   Jan 25, 2019   Design   0 Comment Read More

15 Must-Try WordPress Themes for 2019

There’s usually a better way to build a mousetrap. The same applies to building a website. WordPress is the most popular CMS on the market. It provides a better way, and the right WordPress theme can make website building even easier. You can do it faster, and with superior results.

Are you already a WordPress user? Then, you know that finding a WordPress theme that best suits your needs. There are just too many WordPress themes on the market. Since your needs are bound to change over time, you end up being stuck with an ongoing trial and error approach.

We’ve made finding a top quality WordPress theme easier. It will be a perfect match for your web design requirements. Plus, the themes we’ve selected will keep up with your changing needs.

That said – Happy Shopping!

  1. Be Theme

If you need to build a website of a special type or one that will serve a special business niche Be Theme can do it; which is why this premier multipurpose theme tops our list.

With its 40 core features that include a library of 400+ pre-built websites, Be Theme is the biggest WordPress theme on the market. It’s Be’s overall performance and flexibility however, that warrants our giving this theme a little extra attention.

These pre-built layouts aren’t merely 2-dimensional designs. They’re responsive, easily customizable, they incorporate functionality that serves as a foundation for your website’s UX, they can be installed with a single click, and they cover more than 30 different industry sectors and website types.

With respect to the remaining core features, there’s the popular Muffin Builder editor/page builder, a powerful Admin Panel, Layout Generator, Shortcode Generator, tons of design elements, grid layouts, a new Header Builder and much more.

In short, Be Theme gives you a formidable web design toolbox to work your magic with.

  1. Bridge

Bridge is a best-selling creative WordPress theme that warrants a good, close look as the possible solution to your website-building needs. Bridge’s open-ended customizability, its host of website design options, and its 5-star rated support have made it the most popular creative WordPress theme on the market, at least in the eyes of its more than 100,000 happy customers.

With Bridge’s library of 376 and growing pre-made websites and its multi-purpose selection of design modules you have everything at your fingertips needed to create listings, online shops, magazines, and just about any other website type; and setup is easy.

You can also pick and choose features from several demos to help create an overall design.

Visual Composer is Bridge’s page builder of choice and other plugins in the package include Layer Slider, Revolution Slider, and Timetable Responsive Scheduling.

  1. Brook

Brook is another multipurpose creative WordPress theme worthy of consideration as it will serve you well no matter what purpose or topic your website might be. Brook has it all in terms of website-building features and capabilities, but its performance is what sets it apart from the majority.

Brook’s developers made a point of double checking their code entirely, so as to provide you with a website-building theme that you can count on with its seamless and smooth performance.

Brook’s extensive collection of frequently updated homepage layouts are constantly kept pace with the current design standards and trends. There’s also a wealth of premium plugins, together with a complete set of highly stunning features namely infinite & one page scrolling, parallax effects, Retina HD sliders, mega menus, off-canvas menu, breadcrumbs and so on.

  1. Kalium

A wealth of layout designs, drag and drop content-building elements, and rich theme options make it both possible and easy to showcase your work as you’ve always hoped to. Kalium is a visually stunning, uniquely well-organized, and highly popular WordPress theme that always support the latest WordPress recommendations.

Its many features include a set of full-concept design demos, premium bundled plugins and premium fonts. Kalium is constantly evolving and improving through its periodic updates.

  1. TheGem

TheGem’s authors seem to have mastered the concepts of beauty and flexibility as applied to creating websites. This multi-purpose toolbox has all the tools you’ll ever need to create stunning websites and the necessary flexibility to create those websites for any purpose you can think of.

ThemeForest users will tell you TheGem is the most beautiful theme on the market from a design aspect – and they should know.

  1. Uncode – Creative Multiuse WordPress Theme

There’s so much to like about Uncode that all of it can’t be covered in a small space. Uncode is fully integrated with WooCommerce, creatives find its layout management options to be extremely useful, and this theme features a wealth of blog and portfolio options.

We suggest you visit the unique creative showcase that highlights what Uncode’s users have accomplished. You’ll find it both helpful and inspiring.

  1. Houzez – Highly Customizable Real Estate WordPress Theme

Few if any multipurpose themes can cut it when it comes to providing the tools necessary to create real estate-oriented websites. You really need to invest in a theme like Houzez if you have any hope  of incorporating the functionality a realtor needs without extensive coding.

No coding is necessary with Houzez. It’s advanced property search, flexible listings, unique property management system and payment gateways are ready to be put to use.

  1. Avada WordPress Theme

Avada is a #1 best seller and the most trusted and complete WordPress theme on the market, and for a good reason. This WordPress theme’s powerful website-building tools and many design options, responsive framework, and first-class support are the reasons Avada’s users have fallen in love with it and why you will too.

Starting with this theme’s professionally designed demos, you can create virtually any design style without any need for custom coding to get exactly what you want.

  1. Real Homes

17,500 purchasers and a product review 4.66/5-star rating suggest Real Homes has more than a few things going for it. Its users love this real estate-oriented theme’s property advanced search and flexible property listing features.

Add frontend property submission and major payment gateway capabilities and options and you have a winner.

  1. Grenada – Creative Ajax Portfolio Showcase Slider Theme

Grenada is a theme for all those who deserve a stunning portfolio website. It was in fact designed to accommodate all creative types. It’s innovative, minimalist, and elegant, it features include the super-fast Ajax page load, and Granada is fully compatible with Gutenberg, a new WordPress 5.0 feature.

Just choose a favorite layout and start building a smashing portfolio.

  1. ForumPress

Not every website features a forum, and few if any multipurpose themes provide the tools necessary to incorporate one in a website design. ForumPress solves that problem.

Driven by the bbPress forum plugin, this specialty WordPress theme features everything needed to create and manage a successful online forum and encourage community participation and collaboration. A lightning-fast search capability is included.

  1. KnowAll

KnowAll is a knowledge base theme that provides customer support even when your away. You’ll have fewer support tickets to manage and happier customers as a result. Customers like being able to find their answers without having to wait, and if they’re not quite sure what questions to ask KnowAll can offer suggestions.

Customers can access your knowledge base from any device, and you’re provided with information on which knowledge base articles generate the most queries.

  1. MOVEDO – We DO MOVE Your World

MOVEDO will rock your world as a web designer and you can rock your website visitors in the same way. The secret is movement, real and imagined. Movement is a powerful and effective way to engage visitors. MOVEDO’s cutting edge designs include unique animations and mind-boggling ultra-dynamic parallax effects.

If your websites have been lacking a certain amount of pizzazz lately, this fun to work with WordPress theme provides a solution that will positively MOVE you.

  1. Schema

An attractive looking website can still be a dud as far as the search engines are concerned. Schema quickly shows search engines where to look to find the features they are looking for, guiding them through your site content element by content element.

Schema takes into account code quality, Google algorithm friendliness, ad management, built-in reviews, and much more to give you higher ad ratings and search rankings and improved UX.

  1. Pofo – Creative Portfolio, Blog and eCommerce WordPress Theme

Pofo is a modern, creative design theme for artists, bloggers, creative teams and businesses, and anyone in need of a portfolio, blog, eCommerce site or a site featuring all three. You’ll find cost-free bundled plugins including the WPBakery page builder and revolution slider in the package.

Pofo is blazing fast and SEO optimized, super flexible, and features the WordPress Customizer and custom shortcodes.


Picking a premium WordPress theme designed to fit your needs shouldn’t be a problem. That is until you’re confronted with hundreds of them. Browse through them long enough and they begin to look alike. But they aren’t alike

We’ve made it simple for you by offering this list of 15 of the very best WordPress themes on the market today. Just what you need to get 2019 off to a rousing start.

Happy hunting!

  Image Inq   Jan 22, 2019   Design   0 Comment Read More

14 Typography Skills Every Graphic Designer Should Have

Typography is an important part of web design. Its impact on the overall design of the website can’t be stressed enough. To create harmonious and readable web pages, designers should pay attention to two main factors — font size and space. By changing these variables, you can create an engaging experience for the reader. Designers have to also pay attention to how typefaces are going to look on various devices. By keeping aesthetics and functionality of the typefaces in mind,  web pages can be designed to draw in a customer to read the content. Let us dive deeper into the factors that influence typography and learn some tips and tricks to make your content more readable and engaging. 

1. Font Size

As designers, you have to know the appropriate font sizes when designing to multiple screens. Typefaces that work on desktops need not necessarily work on mobile devices. For example, font sizes on a desktop vary anywhere between 11pt-14pts. When the same size is used on mobile screens, it will appear too big or small. For mobile screens, typefaces should be readable when held at a natural distance. So knowing the right/appropriate font sizes will help create a better reading experience for the user. For body text, font sizes fall anywhere between 14-16px while secondary or less important fonts can be anywhere between 13px-14px. It is advised to view your typographic choices on the actual device before committing to a standard. This will help you communicate your message with clarity.

2. Measuring Units

For font sizes for mobile devices, ems is considered to be the basic standard. Designers are able to easily scale the sizes of the typefaces because it is based on percentages.

3. Choose contrasting colors

By placing text on a contrasting background, designers are able to add visual interest to the layout. Contrast can be applied to the heading or sub-heading or in relation to text underneath it. If the background color is dark, you can choose a light colored text that can help make the content more readable.

4. Selecting fonts

It is important to choose the right font to ensure readability of the content. When choosing a font, it is better to pay attention to the overall legibility more than the style of the typeface. For example, headings and sub-headings are usually used to draw visitors to the content. So it would make sense to use stylized or decorative fonts for this section. The body of the text should be more readable, it is better to set it to a classic style. This will make the reader read through the entirety of the content.

5. Alignment

Readers prefer to read the text in blocks, especially on a small screen. Text on a small screen should be designed such that the words on the line are spaced equally. This will help eliminate rags on either side of the block. Left justified alignment often ends up being the best choice since it leaves no room for inconsistent white spaces.

6. Leading

When designing for mobile screens, it is better to stick to consistent leading. Leading refers to the space between the lines. Bu tightening the space between lines, you are able to improve the overall readability on a mobile screen.

7. Combining fonts

Finding the right combination of font size and leading will you create an effective block of text. Experiment with font styles and find the perfect combination that ensures readability and minimizes distortion.

8. White Space Visualization

Use space to enhance the design of web pages. By adjusting the space between lines, letters and graphics and paragraphs, you can create a layout that is easy to grasp and in turn, make it more readable. For example, in the case of CTA buttons, the space that surrounds them makes these specialized buttons and links pop.

9. Screen Width and Typography

Screen widths play an important role when designing to devices. For mobile screens, both vertical and horizontal widths must be taken into account to figure out the best alignment and spacing.

10. Use unique font styles

Headings and sub-headings usually have to draw the crowd in. Use decorative or stylized fonts here. This will make the content more distinguishable. Adding some form of visual interest here will enhance the overall visual experience for the user.

11. Functionality

Keep the functionality of the application into account when designing for a mobile web page. Set a particular text to execute a certain function – This will help the users distinguish the text from the other elements on the page and perform specific actions, like send a message or make a call.

12. Font Weight

Experiment with font weights to find the perfect font for your screen. If the trend is all about using big, multiple font weights– text it across different resolutions to ensure minimum disruption.

13. Background

If the background is light, use a darker shade of text color to create the right contrast. For video or for a moving image, try experimenting with color and style. If your page is text heavy, try to minimize the use of interactive elements. If your page involves more hovering, typing, and editing, try to adjust your text and its placement accordingly.

14. Pairing multiple fonts

Combine multiple fonts when designing text for headings, sub-headings and body text. By doing this, designers can create contrast and emphasis to the content that is being designed.  This will not help make it readable but also make the overall reading experience a lot more interesting.

Text being one of the primary ways of communicating, designers often end up devoting their entire careers to type. When choosing and selecting a font, it is important to identify the purpose of your design, as it would have to align with the purpose of your project. We hope that these tips will come in handy the next time you take on a typography project.

  Image Inq   Jan 18, 2019   Design   0 Comment Read More

14 Places to Find the Best Font for your Brand

Branding helps a business form an identity. To create a brand identity, you need to have a visual identity system in place. Core identity of a brand is the following — Color, logo, and typography.    How do you choose the right type? Where will you find it? How do you know if it is going to work? If it is time for you to choose a type for your brand, look no further, we have helped narrow down a list of 10 best free fonts to help inform your font selection process. However, it is advised to check the license for each font before you download them. This is mainly because not all of them offer commercial licenses free of charge. You can still use the ones that come with limited licenses for your personal projects.

Google font is a popular site that helps you share and integrate typography into any design project by simply embedding the link onto your website. Their extensive font library features fonts in over 135 different languages. With over 800 font families in their font directory, google fonts make beautiful typography accessible to their users. The best part of their site is that all the fonts are open source and free to download. In addition to the aforementioned features, they also showcase individual type designers and foundries.  This way you are able to see and learn from people behind each type and their process.

Font squirrel is another great place to download free fonts. They also make it easy to distinguish between the fonts that have a commercial license and the ones that don’t. This is a great place to find free, hand-picked, high-quality commercial fonts. It also comes with a set of amazing tools that helps identify fonts for you. You can do this by simply uploading an image of the font you are looking to find and they will try to find the best match by using a built-in algorithm. Another useful tool is the web font generator.

Dafont is a popular platform that lets you download free fonts. It has a category system that lets you find fonts based on different themes. Fonts on this site can be downloaded for free although not all of them come with a commercial license. In addition to these features, you can also submit a font.

Kimberly Ihres created this site as part of her graduation project. It is a site specifically designed to gather women type designers and their designs. You can submit your designs for free and browse through a collection of beautifully designed fonts.

Creativemarket is an online market place for designers where you can upload graphics, fonts, and templates. It offers a variety of free fonts that can be easily searched for and found. However, you are most likely to find individual fonts than a full family of typefaces. The fonts found here usually provides both commercial and limited licenses.

Looking for unique, high-quality typography? This site offers a collection of curated typefaces. Some of their most notable clients include Apple, Nike, Oprah, Random House, D&G, BBC and Gap

Fontspace offers a collection of over 38,000 different fonts. Fonts are categorized by styles. As a registered user, you are able to explore fonts by style, popularity, and type designers. Create a collection by saving your favorite fonts. To find out the license of the font you are downloading, simply hover over them and see if they offer a commercial license.

Fontspring offers unique typographic designs for premium font families. You can easily find and download free fonts on this site. Fontspring partners with font foundries like EXjLbus, Mark Simonson studio, Canda type, Shinntype and more.

Adobe Typekit offers a complete library of fonts and comes with a creative subscription plan. Find the fonts you need by either exploring a collection of different typefaces from their list or simply upload an image of the font you are looking for and the search engine will try to find the best matches for you. It also houses information about designers and foundries.

Looking for high-quality fonts that are free and comes with a commercial license? Look no further, abstract fonts provide a wide array of free fonts that are easy to access and free to use. You can easily find fonts on this site and the visualized category system makes it easy to look through and find the perfect one.

Fonstruct is a font-building tool that lets you create your own font styles using geometrical shapes. Once you are done building the font, It generates true type fonts, ready to download and can be used in any application. This site showcases more than 40,000 different kinds of fonts all generated by people all over the world. They are all free to download.

This site offers high-quality fonts that can be downloaded with a commercial license. It includes thousands of fonts and is updated on a regular basis. It is easy to find the perfect font by selecting different font style, size, and even the font weight.

Urbanfont is a great platform that offers an amazing collection of free fonts. There are trial versions and full versions that users can browse through before downloading a version that fits your design project. By creating an account, you are able to save fonts and use it later.

Behance is not exactly a platform for free fonts. It is a social network for designers and artists to showcase their work and portfolio. Designers also share a lot of free typography content here. The best part of downloading fonts here is that you come across unique designs that are less used than other sites. By searching for fonts on the website, you are able to see a list of all the available free fonts. By selecting individual typefaces, you are able to download a font free of charge.

  Image Inq   Jan 17, 2019   Design   0 Comment Read More

11 Best UI Mock Up Tools

Mock-ups are a visual representation of a web page or a website. Once you have created the wireframe, you can test out your ideas with the help of a mock-up. Mock-ups are usually not as detailed as the final website. These are usually a static visual and should not be confused with a prototype. Mock-ups help you experiment with various design ideas. It also makes anyone collaborating on the project to understand how a proposed website would look like?

There are a lot of different kinds of mock-up tools in the market. How do you find the best one that fits the need of your project? It is important to pay attention to the following criteria when choosing one.

  • It should be able to convert a static mock-up into an interactive prototype
  • The tool should make it easy for you to collaborate with your team-mates — to leave feedback and design ideas.

Let us review some of the best mock-up tools that will help you showcase the design of the webpage, its functionality and layout.

This web UI mock-up tool can be installed on the PC and later can be used as a web application. It is designed to look and feel like you are sketching on a whiteboard. The idea was to keep the wireframing tools intentionally rough and low fidelity. It comes with a set of pre-built drag and drop elements that can be used to create the low fidelity mock-up. Balsamiq is an easy to use mock-up tool. You can either use the trial version to test out the app before purchasing the full version.

Wireframe CC is a free minimalistic prototyping tool. This simple interface has the toolbars and icons of a typical sketching app. The elements appear only when you need them. The color palette is limited, there is a drawing area and buttons for formatting drawing elements. The memory function can be accessed in both trial and full versions.


Moqups is another popular tool for creating website mockups. It is free and easy to use. There is a collection of pre-made templates that can be dragged and dropped into the drawing area. Although the free version doesn’t come with a full range of functions.

Mock plus is an all in one web UI mockup tool that allows you to create mockups in minutes. It comes with an intuitive drag and drop editor that allows you to create mockups with the help of their pre-built templates. This is a great tool for beginners as well as experts. It comes with about 3000 icons and 200+ components. The most interesting feature of this tool is that it allows you to scan the QR code of your project. This makes your project accessible on different devices. They also make it easy to collaborate and work on the project as a team.  It is incredibly easy to use and can be downloaded for free here.

This tool lets you create working prototypes. Once you have created a proto, you can easily share it and start collaborating on projects with people. It comes with a set of incredible features. Besides providing solutions to all your UX needs, it also has prebuilt wireframes and style guides. It is often used to visualize concepts, plan document styles and approve designs.

Omnigraffle lets your construct bold graphics, wireframes, page layouts and charts with ease. You can move the sidebar anywhere on the workspace. You can navigate layer types, group hierarchies. It has all the controls you need to adjust the finer details of your diagram.

Pencil is a free wireframing tool that features multipage documents, object import, alignment, z-ordering, and scaling. It also comes with a set of pre-built templates and can be exported to PNG, PDF and word documents.

This is a digital handwriting app that can easily be downloaded onto your iPad.  You can sketch out your ideas directly onto the device and it automatically ensures that you are working to the right ratio. Saved files can easily be sent to clients for approval.

Frame box is a simple wireframing tool that lets you create Wireframes by simply dragging and dropping pre-built elements. Once you have created one, you can share it as a link/URL. This web application is easy to use and can help create a web page mockups in three easy steps.

Just in mind comes with a full library of UI elements. Users are able to experiment with different buttons, form generates shapes and a range of widgets. By creating a free account, you are able to style your elements exactly the way you want to. Prototypes can also be exported to HTML.

Use Adobe XD to create wireframes, collaborate with your team; creating sitemaps, flowcharts, and storyboards and build interactive prototypes. You can download the full version or try the trial version for free. Either way, you would need to have Adobe Cloud subscription to take advantage of all its features.

UX Pin allows you to create wireframes by dragging and dropping custom elements from their custom library. You are able to convert your wireframes into high fidelity mockups. From here you can create interactive prototypes of your final product. You can also import a photoshop document or sketch document into UX pin and auto-generate specs and style guides with the help of this tool.

While some of these UI mockup tools are free while others aren’t, mockups are an essential part of the design process, so finding the right tool that works for you is essential. Do you have more UI mockup tools to add to the list?

  Image Inq   Jan 15, 2019   Design   0 Comment Read More

Free Photoshop Tools for Web Designers

Photoshop is a versatile tool and designers still use it to create web page layouts. It is often preferred over ‘drag and drop’ builders as it lets you create and customize web pages just the way you imagined it. However, it can take designers a long time to create websites using this tool, especially when compared to other tools in the marketplace. We have gathered some free resources, plugins, tips, and tricks to improve your photoshop workflow and boost your efficiency so you can focus on the actual work.

This collection of resources and plugins can transform your photoshop experience as it opens up new possibilities for font choices, colors, and other design elements.


1. Page Layers

Convert web pages into layered PSD files with this tool. This software is especially helpful when you want to redesign a web page layout. Take a screenshot of the app or the web page you have meaning to rework and use this tool to rearrange different elements in the site to create a new design that works for your business. You can use their free trial version or purchase the premium version which costs about $34.99 – It is compatible with MAC OSX.

2. Bjango Actions

This tool is embedded with a variety of photoshop actions that can speed up your Photoshop workflow. Improve the efficiency of your work by choosing an action from their collection of actions and scripts. Cropping an image, changing colorways and scaling imagery has never been easier.

3. Renamy

Tired of manually renaming every file in your photoshop document? Download renamy and use it to rename multiple documents with a click of a button. You can rename up to 5 documents with the demo version. If you are a long-term photoshop user and work with more than 5 layers at a time, then we highly recommend downloading the premium version.

4. Size marks

This script converts the rectangular marquee tool to labeled measurement marks. This functionality helps a great deal when placing images and text on the page layout.

5. PS Pen Tool

This plugin helps you switch between different pen tools without having to open preferences menu and switching the “Snap Vector Tools” setting on/off. This plugin lets designers easily create icons on photoshop instead of Adobe Illustrator.


This plugin eliminates the need of having to export SVGs and coding them into canvas elements. It lets you create vector graphics and export them into HTML Canvas code.

7. Guideguide

Convert your selections into guides with this tool. You can also choose from the many guide templates that come with the purchase of this tool. This is especially helpful when creating different page structures and layouts.

8. Subtle Patterns

If you are looking to add textures to your websites, subtle patterns offer a collection of different patterns and textures that let you download. pat files that can be imported directly to photoshop.

9. Ink 

This is a great tool for designers who create website mockups on photoshop. It generates all the necessary information you need to build your next web page. It is important to examine layers, font size, element size and position against other elements. Download Ink to generate this information easily.

10. HTML Block

This is another plugin that renders HTML code and places it on a special section/block in your photoshop file. Install this plugin and use it to generate code and preview it like you would in a live browser.

11. Magic Wand

This is a versatile pre-built tool that is great for creating slices, centering layers and groups and can even be used to count the number of pixels in the selection when used with the histogram panel.

12. Pictura

Pictura lets you add images to your photoshop project without leaving your workspace.  This is an incredibly useful tool for graphic designers. Once you install this tool, it automatically adds a panel to your Photoshop document. You are able to search for images through this panel and insert them into your documents easily.

13. Shutterstock 

Download this plugin and access a collection of thousands of images without leaving your Photoshop workspace. Search for an image, edit it as needed and license the content all through photoshop application.

14. Composer

Composer is a great plugin to download if you are a regular photoshop user. It helps you condense your files with just one click. Instead of having separate files with individual layer properties and blend modes, composer lets you save all of them into one single file. With this plugin installed, you can edit and update similar layer comps with a single action. Let us say you have to move an artwork across the screen for 5 different layer comps, instead of dragging it and moving it individually. With this tool selected, you can select all 5 layers and drag it to move all the components simultaneously.

15. Long Shadow generator

Drop shadows is an important trend that has evolved over time. Long shadows create a similar effect — it makes your buttons, toggles and other UI components pop. Long shadow generator plugin creates shadows with just one click. By selecting the shadow length, color, opacity and direction, designers can edit and apply this effect to enhance their UI.

16. Fontea

Typography is an important aspect of web design. Fontea was built to give web designers the flexibility to choose from thousands of free google web fonts without having to download anything. This allows designers to craft beautiful typefaces without having to rely on default font types.

17. Layrs control 2

This is a great tool if you are a regular photoshop user. With this plugin installed, you are able to manage multiple files, optimize layers by flattening your layers and removing unnecessary effects and merging and deleting empty layers.

We hope you enjoyed reading through this list of resources, plugins, and scripts. Using them in conjunction with photoshop can really save you a lot of time, improve your productivity and supercharge your workflow. If we have missed any, write to us and let us know!

  Image Inq   Jan 11, 2019   Design   0 Comment Read More

Best Design Practices for Landing Pages

If you are a marketer, you probably already know the importance of landing pages. This dedicated stand-alone page guides users to perform a single action. If designed well can draw the visitor to click your call to action button and enter your marketing funnel. The main difference between a home page and a landing page is that landing pages are usually designed for a single purpose. Home pages are cluttered and have a variety of offers while landing pages forces visitors to focus on an action you want them to take.

The improve optimization of a landing page, you have to improve each element on your landing page. This helps increase conversions. Finding out more about your audience will help you create pages they expect to see and like. Usually, the bulk of optimization is done after landing pages go live. At this stage, you can make the necessary changes to your page as you observe and analyze data and your conversion rate.

If you are looking to improve your pages, you have to follow industry best practices for Landing page optimization. This means that you would have to rely heavily on conversion rates and strong data. Landing pages should ultimately serve as a tool to draw and retain customers. Let us take a look at individual elements of a page. Landing pages should ultimately serve as a tool to draw in and retain customers. Let us take a look individual elements of the page and how it can be improved for better conversion.

1. Showcase your offering

Human beings make decisions based on their cognitive biases and past experiences. You can design your landing pages to take advantage of this fact. This means that your landing pages would have to have elements that can evoke a strong emotional response from the user. By making your customer feel smart, inspired and appreciated you can help guide their buying decisions.

2. Simplify your landing page

Simple pages often work better than cluttered ones. Having a clearly defined headline/subheading with a strong CTA button usually does the trick. To efficiently communicate a brands message designers have to stick to tried and tested rules of visual design. If you look at the example below, you’ll see how the elements are small enough to fit in the navigation bar and the text container with CTA button stands out on its own.

3. Contrast

Use contrast to your advantage. This also helps create a visual hierarchy that helps engage users in a way that monotone pages do not. If you look the example below, you’ll see that the white text on a textured black background makes the headline, logo and the CTA pop.

4. The content above the fold.

By keeping important parts of the element above the fold, you are increasing your chances of having users see your content. Most visitors don’t take the time to scroll down to see more information — to be sure to place important headlines, and CTA button above the digital fold. It is also easy to use a scroll map to identify the location of the fold on different devices.

5. Scarcity technique

Use the scarcity principle to your advantage. It compels your visitors to take action immediately. By activating a limited time offer, you are actually creating a unique value proposition.

6. Keep CTA text clear and simple.

CTA shouldn’t confuse your user. It should be clearly defined and offer a concise description of your value proposition. So ideally you would want to stay away from complex offers. Here are some really good examples:

  • Join now
  • Try Dropbox for free
  • Submit
  • Sign up for free

7. Contact Info

Landing pages should provide contact info and this can be incorporated into the page in different ways. You can choose to have links for contact pages or simply put the name, email address and phone number on your landing page. There are different ways to access contact info – a well-designed landing page usually has clearly defined contact links or sections that customers can easily access.

8. Headline and copy

Content draws people into your webpage. Have words set the tone of your web page. People read what you write — so make sure to choose a tone that can help you reach your target audience. Also, try A/B testing to see what headlines work best for your pages.

9. Consistency

Visual consistency matters a lot when it comes to landing pages. To keep the voice of your brand consistent across all platforms, you have to under their perceived images and keep the two consistent. So make to pay attention to the color story, imagery, tone, text and feel the same throughout all marketing channels.

9. Testimonials and social proof.

Landing pages should be designed to include social proof. Having testimonials of people you have worked with helps people know that other businesses have used your products and services. This helps in building their trust and improves the overall conversion rate as a result.

10. Form Lengths

Form lengths vary depending on your product or service. Some businesses think that short forms work better than long forms. This means that they usually just want designers to include email addresses on the page. But if you are looking to showcase an expensive product or service, sometimes longer forms tend to be more effective. This could eventually turn into more qualified leads.

11. Optimizing your landing page

To optimize your landing page, you have incorporated specific keywords into your headline, body text, images and more. This way, you are increasing your chances of being encountered by your user.

12. A/B Testing

A/B testing can help you design pages that convert really well. The more tests you run, the more accurate your elements become. After you have run the tests and collected data you need, you can apply that learning to rework the pages you designed. By checking each element on the page with a couple of different variants, you are bound to come up the most effective and desired solution. Use this to improve your conversion rate

By understanding each step of the process and figuring out what works best for your landing page — you can convert your leads. Having good strategies in place and understanding real user data will help you design pages that are not only beautiful but also convert well.

  Image Inq   Jan 09, 2019   Design   0 Comment Read More

How to Create a WordPress Site: The Ultimate Beginner’s Guide 2019

I think you’ll agree with me when I say: creating a WordPress site is a challenging feat for a beginner. Where to start; what to do? Should you choose or, and what’s the difference between the two?

How much does creating a WordPress site cost? Is it $50 bucks, $100 bucks or $10,000 bucks? You have no idea. But still, you yearn to create a WordPress site and that’s good.

Take a breather. Turns out creating a WordPress website is easy, and in this post I will show you exactly how. At the end of the day, you’ll end up creating site after site like the pros.

Read on to learn more.

Start With a Plan

Setting up a WordPress website is like building a house. You must start with a plan. What kind of website are you creating? Why are you creating the website to begin with? I mean, what would you like to achieve with the said website? Answers to these questions (among others) will inform your plan.

For instance, if you’re building an ecommerce website, you consider plugins such as WooCommerce, Ninja Shop and WP Shopify among others. You’ll also need a WordPress ecommerce theme. Additionally, you need a powerful hosting solution.

If you’re creating a portfolio site on the other hand, you need plugins that help you to showcase your work. You’ll also need a theme that fully supports portfolio features. A basic host is adequate for a simple portfolio.

See where I am going with this? Different websites will need different features and tools. Not to confuse you though (seeing as you’re a beginner), let’s get to work.

Disclaimer: For the purpose of illustration, we use Namecheap for this guide. You can, however, choose any other domain registrar and host. The process of creating a WordPress site remains technically the same regardless of the host or domain registrar you choose. If you need help choosing the perfect host for your WordPress site, we trust and recommend the website for the best hosting reviews.

What You’ll Need

  • A domain name such as
  • Great web hosting
  • 30 minutes or less to configure it all, which includes installing WordPress

Buy a Domain Name

A good domain name is short, catchy and memorable. The domain name is your website address, or how readers recognize and find your site on the internet. Good examples of domain names include, and among others.

If you’re creating a personal blog or portfolio site for instance, you can use your name as your domain. You know, something like and among others.

For ecommerce and business sites, you can use your business name as your domain name. For example, we use, and many other businesses do the same.

If you can’t come up with a nice domain name, feel free to use a tool such as Namemesh to get ideas based on your business name or keywords.

Many hosts nowadays offer you free domain registration for the first year. Once you sign up with the host, you start paying for the domain from the second year.

Alternatively, you can buy a domain name separately from a domain registrar such as Namecheap, and add it to your hosting account. But why buy a domain separately? Well, it offers you more control over your website address since you can add it to any hosting account.

Getting a domain name via a hosting company means you have lesser control over the domain name, since it’s owned and controlled by the same company.

Buying a domain name is easy and cheap, what with domains costing about $10 bucks per year. For instance, buying a domain name at Namecheap is a straight-forward process I wouldn’t you to run into any problems.

How to Buy a Domain Name at Namecheap

Without further ado, let us buy a domain name. Head over to and enter your keyword in the search field as we highlight below.

Next, hit the Search button to get the ball rolling. Clicking the search button will lead you to the following screen, where you can see different variations of your domain name.

Choose one that rocks your world and hit the corresponding add to cart button. Once you hit the add to cart button, Namecheap (just like any other host) will try to cross-sell their other services to you. Ignore this, and click the View Cart button instead as shown below.

On the next screen, hit the Confirm Order button as we highlight in the image below.

Clicking the Confirm Order button will redirect you to either login to your Namecheap account or create a new one if you’re a new customer. As a new customer, fill out the form accurately and hit the Create Account and Continue button at the bottom of the form.

After that, add your account contact information on the next page we show in the image below.

Once you’ve filled out the form, hit the Continue button. This leads you to the Whois contact information screen. Set up your Whois  contact info and hit the Continue button as shown below.

Next, choose your payment option on the billing screen and click the Continue button to complete your purchase.

Upon successful order completion, you’ll be redirected to an intuitive dashboard that looks like this:

My account has a total of three domain names, but yours will only show the domain you just bought. With a domain name in hand, it’s time to shop for a good host.

Choose Good Hosting

Your WordPress site needs a good home. Just like you’d do anything for the perfect home, your WordPress site needs the best hosting to thrive.

You cannot afford downtimes and server-related errors that make your beloved WordPress site unusable at any given time. If there’s a spike in traffic, your host should shoulder the burden without taking down your site.

Choosing a good host is all about your specific website needs. Different website features have different resource requirements. Your host of choice should cater to all of your website needs.

WordPress by itself has very low server requirements. Nearly every host on the planet can host WordPress. The problem arises when you start building your website on top of WordPress and the host doesn’t have sufficient resources for your website. Only go for the best.

There’s a special group of hosts known as managed WordPress hosting. They host WordPress sites exclusively. They are a bit pricier than, say, Namecheap, but many users feel the price is worth it. Popular companies in the area include WP Engine, Kinsta and Pagely among others.

A good host provides enough resources to sustain your site. On top of that, they offer great backup plans (although you should invest in off-site backups e.g., military-grade security and world-class 24/7 support.

From personal experience, Namecheap is a decent WordPress hosting company for beginners. Besides, you can always upgrade hosting depending on your website needs.

How to Buy Hosting From Namecheap

Point your browser to, mouse over the Hosting menu and click the Shared Hosting sub-menu as shown below. Notice also, the other available hosting packages. For beginners though, I recommend shared hosting.

This will lead you to the pricing page for shared hosting packages. Choose Stellar, Stellar Plus or Stellar Business by clicking the respective Add to Cart button as shown below.

Shown above are the monthly prices for each package at the time of writing. As you can see, hosting a website is relatively cheap.

On the next screen, hit the Use a domain I own with Namecheap button as shown below.

This will prompt you to sign in to your Namecheap account. Click the Sign In button as we detail in the image below.

Enter your username and password to login, select the domain you’d like to use and hit the Continue button as shown below.

On the next screen, confirm your order by hitting the Confirm Order button as shown below.

Next, choose your payment method and hit the Continue button as we highlight below.

Go ahead and complete the purchase. After successfully purchasing hosting for your domain name, you will be redirected to your dashboard. You can explore all products (e.g. hosting, SSL certificates, etc) attached to your domain name as shown below.

As shown in the image above, you can see Value Hosting is now attached to the domain we bought. To manage your hosting and access your cPanel, click the Manage button as shown above. Click this button leads you to the screen below.

From the image above, notice your username and the Login to CPanel button. Note that you will also receive a welcome email from Namecheap with your login details and everything you need to hit the ground running.

Are you learning something?

Installing WordPress

Setting up WordPress is the stuff of fourth graders. It takes less than 5 minutes once you have you domain name and hosting set.

Login to your cPanel and click the Softaculous Apps Installer button as we highlight below.

After that, click the WordPress icon as we show in the screenshot below.

Next, hit the Install Now button to start as we detail below.

On the next screen, choose your domain name and other settings such as the site name, description and admin login details (make the details strong).

Fill out the form carefully and click the Install button at the bottom of the page. This will initiate the installation, which looks something like this:

After a couple of seconds (and if everything goes well), you should see the success screen shown below.

From the screen above, you can see where you installed WordPress as well as the link to login to the WordPress admin area. When you click the Administrative URL (e.g., Softaculous will redirect you to your WordPress admin login page as shown below.

Login to your WordPress admin dashboard using the details you created while installing WordPress. Here is how the WordPress admin dashboard looks like.

And here is how your new WordPress site looks on the front-end, complete with the default Twenty Nineteen theme.

That’s it; you now have a new WordPress site that you can customize as you desire. There are thousands of WordPress themes and plugins at your disposal, meaning you can build the website of your dreams without ever hiring a developer.

Necessary Start Plugins

After creating your WordPress site, you need a couple of start plugins to super-charge your site. Off the top of my head, I’d recommend:

  • Akismet to fight comment spam
  • Jetpack for a nice suite of features such as comments and automatic social sharing among others
  • ManageWP to manage your site, and more importantly, create free off-site backups
  • iThemes security to keep the bad guys away
  • Yoast SEO so you can optimize your site for search engines like a pro
  • And any other plugin that helps you to meet your goal
  • Really, the plugins you end up choosing depends on your website needs

On Choosing a WordPress Theme

Choose a theme that complements your website. You can go for a theme specifically built for a single purpose e.g. eCommerce, restaurant, portfolio etc or a multi-purpose theme such as Total by WPExplorer.

Alternatively, you can start with a free theme and go premium when need be. Note, however, free themes don’t come with pro support and as many features.


Save for a few technical hurdles that may delay you, creating a WordPress site is both easy and cheap. Just pick a domain name, choose a good host and install WordPress.

The theme and plugins you use afterwards depend on your needs and preferences. At the end of the day, you’ll create WordPress sites like you have web design hard-wired into your brain.

Have questions or thoughts regarding this post? If so, please do not hesitate to comment below. Cheers and happy creating with WordPress!

  Image Inq   Jan 07, 2019   Design   0 Comment Read More

Guide to Creating a Great Design Brief + Download Free Template

A great design brief is a roadmap that guides creatives in the right direction and ensures that deliverables are in sync with the project expectations. Having your goals and expectations clearly defined on a sheet will help you not only be on the same page as your client but will also let you form a structure for the project. A good design brief will contain everything you need to complete the project on time. So start your research before you hop on that call with your client. Read up about their business, websites, blogs and try to understand what they offering is all about. When a client approaches you with a project, they are usually looking to solve a problem. As a designer, your task is to understand this problem and understanding a brand will enable you to respond to their needs in a systematic and methodical way.

We have gathered a list of 10 questions to ask yourself and the client when taking on a new project. This should help you gain a better understanding of your client and their business.

1. Client Information

Asking the right questions about the company and the client will help you gain a deeper perspective about them and their work. Here are some common and relevant questions to ask when starting a new project.
– What is the size of your company?
-What is their product or service?
-What is the story behind their business?
-Who are they targeting their business towards?

In addition, to this, finding out more about their personality and values will also help gain an intimate understanding of them and use this to set the overall tone of the project.

2. Project Description

It is important to set your project goals early on in the project. Your brief should ideally begin with this section — Include a paragraph about the entire scope of the project that you and your client can envision as a team. Here is a list of important points to consider:
-The objective behind the project
-What you want to accomplish
-Problems that brand is facing and how you would like to address them
-Metrics you will use to measure success or failure.

Knowing the deliverables and how your design files will be used will help you make better design choices.

3.Target Audience

Find out more about who your audiences are. You are ultimately trying to serve them by completing this project. In order to be able to reach the audience with your campaign, you have to know them. To properly identify them, ask the following questions:
-Demographic details – Age range, gender, race
-Behavioral patterns – How often do they use your service, try to put a face on your customer.

Using a portrait of your Target customer, you will be able to gauge how they think, feel and behave. This, in turn, will help you make better design choices.

4. Competition

Knowing your client’s competition is crucial to your project’s success. Who is your direct competition? How are they positioning themselves in the market? What can you do to steal market share? When you delve deeper into their weaknesses, you learn how to cope with the market share threats that will help you better position yourself in the market.

-Identify their strengths
-Identify their weaknesses
-Identify opportunities
-Identify threats

5. Deliverables

Every project is different and will have different needs and requirements. Listing them in order of preference and execution will help bring clarity to the entire project. It is also important to include the specifics about the final file formats that they require to finish the project.

6.Tone, Imagery, and Messaging

To be able to communicate your message across, you have to set the right tone. They should be in alignment with the overall mood of your project and the brand is perceived in the marketplace. The audience will pick up on the traits of the brand by sensing the tone from your designs. So ask the right questions about colors, imagery and how they would like the company to be represented.

7. Timeline and Budget

Set down firm expectations on when you expect a deliverable to be completed. It helps you stay on track to complete your campaign. You also have to figure out how much your client is willing to spend before you start the project. This protects you and the client and helps maintain the integrity of the designer-client relationship.

8. Ultimate goals and Metrics

Asking how they will measure the success of your project will help you make better design choices. This will help you design projects and experiences that can better serve the client and increase chances if having satisfied clients.

Writing a design brief can be time-consuming. But it is much better to ask the right questions at the right time so that you know where you both stand as a team. To increase the chances of having happy clients that will help you and your business thrive will ultimately guarantee a project’s success.
Creative briefs don’t have to be beautiful but it has to contain enough information about the project. Let’s take a look at some examples and templates that can serve as an inspiration for your next creative project.

The difference between a good design brief and a great one is the latter contains all the necessary information required for successful completion of a project. This brief contains useful information but lacks the information about the target audience, their strengths, budget, and other deadlines.

Whereas the brief below has all the information that a designer would need to start the project. The designer is aware of the project deadline, tone, brand guidelines, and the theme.

Free Design Brief Template

Inspired? Download this free creative brief template to get a head start on your next creative project!

  Image Inq   Jan 03, 2019   Design   0 Comment Read More
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