Categories
personal development

New Month Check-In! Pushing Through Your Goals

Happy Monday Everyone!

January felt like a long, drawn out month for me. Many times I did not know if I could keep up with all the enthusiasm I had during the holidays, but everytime I look at my vision board that I created with my free vision board kit, remember why I set those short-term goals. I set them because I wanted to put more energy into things I love, and things that will get me to where I love. I remind myself of the intentions I set and that helped me get back on track.

Quick Goal Check In.

I wanted to check in with my readers. How is your first week of February going?

Are you keeping up with your goals?

Are there areas in your daily routine that you’re struggling with?

Reminder that you have all year to work on yourself and set new intentions. I’d love to hear from you!

Sincerely,

Arienne J

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Categories
blog graphic design personal development

Find Your Creative Process

When I graduated university a few years ago, I was freelancing and applying to several creative agencies. When applying for web and graphic design jobs, one of the job applications had an assessment question that still stuck with me today: what is your creative process?

I never actually thought about my process. What I do from start to finish that is consistent in every project. I also did not think it was as necessary to know as I do now, but having a clear process made the work become WAY easier throughout my years of designing.

What is a Process?

According to Merriam-Webster, “to subject to or handle through an established usually routine set of procedures.” A process is a procedure of creation, from conception to final result. Several people have processes in their everyday routines. Having a process is human nature but we never stop to think what our current process is, and how we can actively perfect it to increase our productivity.

My Personal Creative Process

  1. Research

This is where I gather all the information and expectations of the project needed. This includes asking the client or project manager what is the final goal. I then research elements of the project I am least familiar with, and I look at how other creators’ (or people in the field) projects, to see how they went about completing similar projects.

2. Idea Conception

This is one step I rarely skip: getting inspired. I search creative designs and concepts to get an idea of what is it there and to help spark ideas before starting. I have a list of websites and apps that give creative inspiration, feel free to check them out!

3. Creation
I start to create. Sometimes I start one with one idea, than another idea sparks. Depending on the timeline of the project sometimes I have multiple versions.

4. Feedback and Revise
Getting feedback with a draft is so important for my piece of mind. I like to show my progress so I know I am going in the right direction to my stakeholders. We can get so anxious in showing a draft version of our work, and end up completing it without micro-revisions. Criticism is good if it is constructive and clearly communicated, and can help the end result to look even better.

Reflection
Once the project is done, it’s always nice for me to reflect back for next time. This is how I (try to) grow as a person and become better. In a way, this is personal feedback from myself, and is an underrated step. I also like to upload my work online (when I get the chance) and add onto my list of skills if I learned something new.

Create Your Stress-Free, Efficient Process Today!

What is your creative process right now? What step in my creative process so you think can be added to yours? I’d love to hear in the comments below.

Sincerely,

Arienne J

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Categories
blog Digital Marketing graphic design Web Design

The BEST Photo + Design Resources on the Web

I am sharing my top visual resources for blogging and social media.

As a blogger, we are always looking for resources to bring our social media content to the next level. Most of us do not have the capacity to take our own photos for EVERY post, and creating a graphic from scratch can be difficult, so finding free resources of graphics and royalty-free photos have been a game changer.

Here are some of the best websites I use to take my posts to the next level.

unplash website on computer screen with search bar
Unsplash.com

The BEST Photo Resources on the Web

Wondering where bloggers get that cute dog stock photos, a model looking productive on a computer photo or the dreamy beach house photos? These websites are where. If you are not the best photographer or just do not have the time or resources to set up environmental photoshoots (shooting in the subject’s environment), these website will help you. Blog posts that have a compelling photo bring more traffic and increase your SEO score.

  1. Pixabayhttps://pixabay.com
  2. Pexelshttps://www.pexels.com/royalty-free-images/
  3. Unsplashhttps://unsplash.com/
  4. Bufferhttps://buffer.com/library/free-images/
  5. FreeImages https://www.freeimages.com/

Try and stick to a theme when getting photos, and if you want to go the extra mile, edit the feature photos to go with your aesthetic.

The BEST Quick Design Resources on the Web

I am a graphic designer who is fully capable of using Adobe Creative Suite programs such as Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign to create graphics, but if I want to create or something quickly (especially for my personal brand) I usually run to apps and websites that give hundreds of already made templates which can be customized for my needs. Also if I need to quickly edit a photo before posting, I use easy to use apps for that. Here are just a few:

  1. Canva – Instant custom graphic design tool and app, probably the most popular https://www.canva.com/
  2. PNGTree – This goes beyond png images. You’ll find tons of photoshop templates here. https://pngtree.com/free-templates-psd
  3. Colorlib – Websites HTML templates for my web designers with a little front-end experience. https://colorlib.com/wp/themes/
  4. PicMonkey – Advanced but easy to use photo editor. Oldie but goodie. Used to be free but now there is a small monthly fee, but if you want to invest, give the free trial a try. https://www.picmonkey.com/features
  5. Crello – A great website for graphic design templates with fun illustrations. https://crello.com/
  6. Airbrush (iOS and Android app): Great for doing quick yet detailed photo edits to your social media posts. They have a great library of filters as well. https://appairbrush.com/. I will be creating a whole post about apps I use to edit my social media posts next week.

Other Resources That Will Save You Time

coolors website homepage with pallette example
Coolors.co
Typography

If you are working on Adobe files like photoshop and want to own those cool fonts you see online for free, this is where you can find and download them (or link them to your code!). 

  1. DaFonthttps://www.dafont.com/
  2. Google Fontshttps://fonts.google.com/
Choosing Colors + Color Palette

Struggling to find a color palette that works for your brand? These resources are great to see what the colors look like together, and can easily be exported in many ways. All of them provide HEX # codes to be reproduced anywhere online.

  1. Coolorshttps://coolors.co/
  2. Color Hex https://www.color-hex.com/color-palettes/
  3. HTML Color Codeshttps://htmlcolorcodes.com/

I hope that this list helps you with your blogging or social media journey as a visual content creator. More graphic design posts will be coming soon. I have been a graphic designer for several years but I am always learning. Read about my design story and how I chose the visual design field!

Sincerely,