Category: design tools

get organized: a daily planner

I would be lost without my Action Journal, but I seem to be missing the calendar aspect of my notebook lately. To remedy it, I’ve been looking for a sleek time keeper and I love these 2012 Planners from Julia Kostreva. So colorful and simple! It’d make scheduling meetings and timelines so much easier.

how Workflowy saved my productivity

I’ve had a lot of projects and exciting ventures come up lately, but when I got home from work, I find that I’m usually too overwhelmed by the amount on my plate to start anything at all. The satisfaction of finishing something was impossible. My projects were pushed to the weekend, and I could only finish one or half of one at a time.

I soon found the answer to my conundrum: breaking a large project into many small steps. It seemed simple, but the written list still looked overwhelming and how was I supposed to keep track of the list itself, especially when we’re talking about putting a design for our wedding invitations together! (I think that might just be a designers worst nightmare… )

And then I found Workflowy. My savior. A to-do list for the overwhelmed like me, Workflowy offers tiers of lists to keep your work moving, one step at a time. They shrink and expand based on a project, so you’re staring at a huge list of to-dos, but able to focus on each step, per project. It has helped me so much in taking small steps during the week and moving closer to my goals. I highly recommend giving it a try! It’s saved my productivity for sure.

Get to work! My Action Journal

I always carry a notebook around because my head can never keep track of the 1,000 directions it seems to go, especially when meeting with friends or clients. When I whip out my Action Journal from Behance, I always get asked where I bought it, because it’s not only the perfect size for sketching and sticking in your purse, it has a check-mark list on the right side for putting your ideas into motion. So here is my pride and joy (the light blue version) and my Action Method for getting things done!

You can purchase the Action Journal for $17.50, along with many other Action Method products like Action Pads, Cards and Books. Now get to work!

photos via behance

Know Your Design History

One thing I wish I had paid more attention to in college was design history. I appreciate the knowledge much more now that I’m out of school and have been brushing up on my design prowess with the MFA Designer As Auther Paul Rand Lectures from the School of Visual Arts. I now understand how important it is to learn the foundation before building on it and I wish I had known to pay more attention instead of looking at blogs and iChatting in class (oops, did I just say that?).

via delicious design league

Emily Cohen: Helping you design your business

There is so much dreariness outside today, I knew I’d be listening to a Creative Morning talk to brighten it up a bit. I couldn’t have asked for a better video to pick than Emily Cohen’s talk about business, startups, running a successful design company, contract tips and letting us know that “a fish stinks from the head down.” Truly worth watching no matter what kind of creative you are.

How Graphic Designers Get Paid

While doing my freelance projects, I always wonder what others are doing as they deal with their clients and money. This great article, How Graphic Designers Get Paid, has done most of the legwork in showing what others do and have done for their own work. I was very surprised at some of the answers, especially that 61.5% said they bill a fixed rate. I thought for sure it’d be more even with an hourly rate. Did any numbers surprise you?

via David Airey

I can’t tell you how many times I wish I had this site!, created by freelance designer Fahri Özkaramanlı, is a tool to quickly view a word in all the fonts loaded on your computer. I thought it may take a while to load, but it surprisingly populated really quickly, leaving me time to peruse the terrible fonts I forgot I had loaded on my laptop. Check it out for yourself at

via HOW

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