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    Brand Guides

    September 13, 2019

    Two incredible new digital brand style guides I’ve discovered recently:

    Starbucks uses unconventional navigation elements, sleek UX, and clean design in their creative expression site. The result is a beautiful and useful guide for their brand.

    The Guardian has an awesome, comprehensive digital design system guide, bringing order and rules to a complex website that could quickly get messy.

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    Better Cookie Consent Experiences

    April 10, 2019

    Smart and timely deep dive on how to deal with cookie consent prompts from a privacy and UX perspective:

    With the advent of the EU General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) in May 2018, the web has turned into a vast exhibition of consent pop-ups, notifications, toolbars, and modals. While the intent of most cookie-related prompts is the same — to get a user’s consent to keep collecting and evaluating their behavior the same ol’ way they’ve been doing for years — implementations differ significantly, often making it ridiculously difficult or simply impossible for customers to opt out from tracking.

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    The importance of art direction for the web

    April 10, 2019

    Great article outlining techniques to infuse soul and personality into your web design projects.

    See also: Andy Clarke’s Art Direction for the Web, which was recently published by Smashing Magazine. Definitely adding this to my wish list!



    Project VisBug

    December 3, 2018

    For web designers: here’s a new Chrome extension that works as a visual inspector and interface editor. See also: DevTools for Designers.



    Having an ethical mindset in web development

    July 12, 2018

    This is a relevant and concise write-up of ethics in front-end development. I believe it is critical to apply ethics before doing work so that we can think through the consequences of our code and designs.

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    Curiosity, hard work, and finding a passion: my path to web design

    July 11, 2018

    Since I am newly graduated and feeling extra reminiscent of my time at school, I thought it would be fun to share the story of how I got into my field. Below is a condensed timeline of how I found my fit in web and user experience design:

    Pre-college years
    As a kid, I loved playing with software and computers, and as the son of a professional photographer, I have early memories of art and technology. I didn’t consider myself very creative growing up, but I truly admired art and design, and frequent visits to my dad’s studio made me enthusiastic about the creative industry. In high school, it was clear to me that I wanted to pursue a career that would mix my creative and technical abilities, so going to college for graphic design was a no-brainer (although my family was a bit skeptical at first).

    Adventures in art school
    I enrolled at The University of Akron and began taking art classes in my first semester. In their design program, the first year is dedicated to a foundations curriculum, so my courses included things like drawing, 2D, and 3D design. These courses helped push me in significant ways and made it much easier to transition to my actual design classes, where idea generation, concept development, and process were vital. I liked how well-rounded the curriculum was, and I enjoyed learning from my instructors, but it wasn’t until my first web design class that I really dove into my passions.

    Web I
    Learning to code felt like magic to me. Going into my first web design class, I was very excited and a little bit nervous, since I knew this could be something I would really enjoy, but also challenging at the same time. But it turns out when you’re driven to something, and nothing can pull you away from it, actually learning the material and practicing it is no hard work at all. I threw myself into web and loved the class for making me think more critically about design, the satisfaction I gained from creative problem-solving, and the foundation skills I learned from coding basic HTML and CSS.

    Web II and onwards
    Once I found out how much I loved web design and coding, everything else I was doing seemed to benefit from it. I began studying graphic design in closer detail, researching other artists and designers, and working more diligently and thoughtfully on classwork. My work improved considerably during this time, and I started genuinely enjoying my education. Later classes like Web II and Interactivity taught me core principles of user interface and user experience design, things that excite me just as much as, if not more than, web.

    The real world (learning doesn’t stop after school)
    During my time in college, I was fortunate enough to land an internship doing graphic design work for clients. I also managed the website for my art school which gave me more experience dabbling in code and taught me valuable lessons in communication and working independently/remotely. Now that I’ve graduated and am working a new full-time job, I feel like the learning has just begun. While I can confidently apply the skills I learned during school in my new position, there is infinitely more to understand, many years of growing to do, and so much more to accomplish. While coding websites may not be your fit, it indeed is mine, and I hope this blog post can inspire you to find what excites you in the design field.

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    The Layouts of Tomorrow

    June 21, 2018

    Extraordinary examples of what is possible in layout and animation in web design. With new tools like CSS Grid and other front-end techniques, it is an exciting time to be designing for the web!



    Solis for Mac

    April 21, 2018

    Discovered a new app today called Solis, a Live Design Output that integrates with code editors to deliver real-time, multi-viewport previewing of HTML, CSS, SASS, and LESS as you write it.

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    Fontanello

    March 25, 2018

    Fontanello is a browser extension for Google Chrome and Firefox that lets you display the basic typographic styles of a text by right-clicking it. Check it out here!

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    Everything Easy is Hard Again by Frank Chimero

    March 7, 2018

    This essay by Frank Chimero is the smartest thing I’ve read about the web recently. In it, he argues “the web needs pockets of slowness and thoughtfulness as its reach and power continues to increase.” I found it fascinating to read his early experiences of learning how to write markup by reading it. As someone who is passionate about all things web, I hope that this essay inspires the current generation of web designers and developers to keep their work legible for younger designers like myself to learn.

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