April 14, 2017

A to Z of Design: G is for gutter

Filed under: Design & Art — Tags: , , , — lidia @ 10:46 pm

G is for gutter

The gutter is the space created by the binding of a book or magazine. It is the inside margins of the left and right pages, or blank space between two facing pages.

Depending on the type of binding, the gutter measurement may need to be increased as the viewing area can be reduced by the curvature of the pages.

See all of the A to Z of Design posts here.

A to Z of Design: F is for Fold

Filed under: Design & Art — lidia @ 10:28 pm

F is for fold

Choosing a fold is an important part of the design process. How well do you know your folds? Below are some of the most common folds.

types of folds

For folding inspiration and examples of more unique folds, check out the Super-Cool Folds page by FoldFactory.

See all of the A to Z of Design posts here.

April 6, 2017

A to Z of Design: E is for EPS

Filed under: Design & Art — lidia @ 11:44 pm

A to Z of Design: E is for EPS

EPS, TIF, JPG, oh my! Navigating all the various file formats can be confusing. Here’s a quick primer.

  • EPS (vector): A fully-scalable file format, which means quality and resolution are not lost when scaling up. This type of file is generally used for logos or other artwork that will be reproduced in print.
  • TIF: The standard format used for high-resolution, detailed images that will be placed in a layout program.
  • JPG: A compressed image file format, mainly used for desktop printing and web/online graphics. It does not support transparent backgrounds.
  • PNG: A low-resolution image format used for web or social media graphics, as well as PowerPoint/Word files. Images can have a transparent background.
  • GIF: A low-resolution image format mainly used for web or email.
  • PDF: A file format that embeds fonts, images and design. Used often for design proofs or forms (fillable form fields can be created). Print vendors will also accept high-resolution PDF files for print projects.

See all of the A to Z of Design posts here.

April 5, 2017

A to Z of Design: D is for DPI

Filed under: Design & Art — Tags: , — lidia @ 10:38 pm

D is for DPI

DPI (or dots per inch) is a way to measure the resolution of a printed digital image. The higher the DPI, the higher the detail and quality of an image. For most print projects, 300 DPI is optimal.

When an image is enlarged, its DPI and resolution become reduced so it’s best to use an image that is 300 DPI at actual size or larger than it will be used. This also means that you can’t “size up” or take an image of lower quality, say 150 DPI, and make it 300 DPI. (Note: vector images don’t apply to these rules as they can be enlarged without losing quality.)

To learn more, read Creative Bloq’s post, The ultimate guide to image resolution.

See all of the A to Z of Design posts here.

April 4, 2017

A to Z of Design: C is for Color

Filed under: Design & Art — Tags: , , , , , — lidia @ 10:11 pm

C is for color

Designers use a variety of color systems, based on the project’s needs and goals.

CMYK is a color system in which colors are created using a combination of cyan (C), magenta (M), yellow (Y) and black (K) inks. CMYK is also referred to as four-color process printing.

PMS (Pantone Matching System) is a standardized color system in which each ink color is assigned a number, i.e. PMS 179. This allows print vendors to assure color accuracy. PMS colors are often used for branding projects (usually 1 or 2 colors) in which color match is crucial. PMS colors are also called spot colors.

RGB (red, green, blue) is a color system used by computer monitors and video screens. RGB colors are difficult to match as brightness and quality can vary by monitor.

Hex is a six-digit color system used for web applications (i.e. HTML and CSS). Colors are specified like this: #CD5C5C.

See all of the A to Z of Design posts here.

April 3, 2017

A to Z of Design: B is for Bleed

Filed under: Design peek — lidia @ 7:21 pm

A to Z of Design: B is for Bleed

If a design prints to the edge of the paper, it must be extended slightly past the page—this is called bleed. A standard bleed is 1/8–¼” past the actual page size (also called trim size) but varies by print vendor. A design with bleed is printed on a larger sheet of paper and trimmed to the correct size.

See all of the A to Z of Design posts here.

A to Z of Design: A is for Alignment

Filed under: Design & Art,Uncategorized — Tags: , , — lidia @ 5:07 pm

A to Z of Design: A is for Alignment

Alignment is the positioning of text, images or design elements in a layout.

Items can be left-aligned (also called flush left), right-aligned (flush right), centered or justified (when text aligns on both left and right edges).

Justified text can cause strange gaps, so extra attention must be given to line breaks and spacing.

See all of the A to Z of Design posts here.

April 1, 2017

A to Z of Design: a daily blogging challenge [intro]

Filed under: Design & Art — lidia @ 5:49 pm

Today is the first day of the 2017 Blogging from A to Z Challenge, a daily blog challenge I’ve been participating in for the last three years. (See my A to Z of Being a Mom in Business and A to Z of Branding)

This year’s topic is A to Z of Design, basic design terminology that will come in handy if you work with graphic designers.

Follow along here during the month of April or on twitter at #atozdesign

See all of the A to Z of Design posts here.

March 15, 2017

RECAP: SheSays Chicago’s International Women’s Day panel discussion

Filed under: Creativity — lidia @ 3:16 pm

SheSays Chicago's International Women's Day

Last week, I attended SheSays Chicago’s International Women’s Day panel discussion at Leo Burnett. It was a lively discussion on creating a more gender-inclusive world, filled with inspiration and humor.

Below are a few top quotes from the panelists and audience members:

If we apply innovation and startup principles, we can create solutions to our problems.

Keeping it inside yourself, not moving forward, is he problem. 

I want to get to the point where we’re not criticized for the choices me make.

Karen Gordon, Founder, Chief Design Facilitator, WE Design Think


You can balance being who you are, but remind yourself of your intention.

Be opinionated when you need to. 

–Pooka Merai, Design Strategist, Salesforce


It would be hard to do a day without women because women can’t NOT do.

There’s a business cost when you don’t bring your whole self to the table.

We show up not just for ourselves but for he thousands of other women behind us. 

My goal is to help all these guys become advocates for women.

Sandee Kastrul, President and Co-Founder, I.c. stars


It’s important that [men] are actively involved in the conversation and listening. We don’t always know what we’re doing. 

Britt Nolan, CCO, Leo Burnett


Leaders who can balance EQ and IQ with loving kindness will succeed, whether male or female.

Andrew Swinand, CEO, Leo Burnett

At the end of the event, there was a challenge presented to all of us to spend more time mentoring other women. 

How will you #BeBoldforChange?

February 28, 2017

What the kerning? Why spacing matters.

Filed under: Design & Art — Tags: , , , , — lidia @ 3:07 pm

What is kerning and why does it matter? Kerning is the process of adjusting the space between characters to make it more visually-pleasing. More of an art than science, it makes a typographic design look more professional and polished.

Watch this 45-second video and see why kerning matters.

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