Category Archives: General News

The Rise Of Visual Social Media

BLOG POSTS BECAME FACEBOOK UPDATES AND TUMBLR POSTS, WHICH SHRUNK TO TWEETS AND FINALLY TO INSTAGRAM OR PINTEREST. HERE’S HOW SMART BRANDS ARE NAVIGATING THE NEW VISUAL SOCIAL-MEDIA ERA.

Social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest have ushered in visual marketing as the breakout trend for 2012. When it comes to their products, businesses are learning to show, not tell, and visual content sites are fueling our desire for beautiful photography and sensational design. Two years ago, marketers were spreading the maxim that “content is king,” but now, it seems, “a picture really is worth a thousand words.”

“Blogs were one of the earliest forms of social networking where people were writing 1,000 words,” says Dr. William J. Ward, Social Media professor at Syracuse University. “When we moved to status updates on Facebook, our posts became shorter. Then micro-blogs like Twitter came along and shortened our updates to 140 characters. Now we are even skipping words altogether and moving towards more visual communication with social-sharing sites like Pinterest.”

This trend toward the visual is also influenced by the shifting habits of technology users. As more people engage with social media via smartphones, they’re discovering that taking a picture “on the go” using a high-resolution phone is much less tedious than typing out a status update on a two-inch keyboard.

2012 study by ROI Research found that when users engage with friends on social media sites, it’s the pictures they took that are enjoyed the most. Forty-four percent of respondents are more likely to engage with brands if they post pictures than any other media. Pictures have become one of our default modes of sorting and understanding the vast amounts of information we’re exposed to every day.

Detavio Samuals is the EVP and Director of Client Services at GlobalHue, one of the nation’s top market advertising agencies. He explains that pictures are a bit like movie trailers for written content–they provide a snippet of what an article, brand, site or other piece of content is about, so that you can quickly decide if it’s what you wanted or not.

“Pictures have also become a short form way of communicating lots of information quickly and succinctly,” says Samuals. “The need for publishers to get to the point quicker than ever came about as humans became more pressed for time and content became more infinite. For publishers, it was evolve or risk losing their audience, and the only thing shorter than a tweet or post is a picture.”

So what does all this visual stimulation mean for brands?

Fashion designer Kahri-Anne Kerr uses visual social media sites like Pinterest and Facebook to market her Kahri collection. In the fashion world, visual fantasy sells product, as customers need to see the cut of a garment on a model and feel as though they could make that item work in their own wardrobe. “When I post pictures on Facebook, they get the most feedback of all my posts,” says Kahri. Visual media is a great way to share more about what inspires the designs, as well as linking to your online store and straight product shots.”

“I am just getting into Instagram, which I use to give a personal look at the person behind the label by taking shots around my studio and in my everyday life.”

Designer paper/analog brand Moleskine has harnessed the power of visual media to create one of the world’s most active, prolific, and creative online communities. Their visual content strategy focuses on user-generated content: They create large-scale projects that users participate in by posting their own images and videos.

A popular campaign called What’s In Your Bag? had users update pictures of the contents of their bags into a Facebook album. The project generated thousands of likes and comments as readers looked at the contents of other bags (which included Moleskine notebooks, naturally), and shared photos with their friends.

Inspiring fans to create and spread images, customize their notebooks, organize online competitions, and otherwise engage with the brand on a creative level has set Moleskine apart in its highly specialized market.

Search engines now rank content based on social conversations and sharing, not just websites alone. Brands can use visual content on their social media to increase engagement and inspire sharing and viral marketing. The rise of platforms like Pinterest and Instagram, and Facebook’s multimillion-dollar acquisition of the latter, shows how visual content is becoming an increasingly important force for communication online.

Brands that can rock visual media will find themselves market leaders.

Re-Blogged by 5j Design –  original article by Ekaterina Walter is Intel’s social media strategist. Follow her @ekaterina.

Facebook Campaigns

5j Design is excited to announce a brand new project available to those who are looking to maximize their Facebook influence. This project is called “Campaigns”. We provide customized Social media campaigns focused on brand awareness, visual impact and network presence.

  • Social media is the #1 online activity.
  • People spend 1 out of every 6min online on social media.
  • Facebook accounts for 1 out of every 5 pageviews on the internet worldwide.
  • Facebook has 845 million monthly active users.
  • 50.3% of the USA population is on Facebook.
  • 57% of Facebook users are female, 43% are male.
  • The average time spent on Facebook per visit is 20 minutes.
  • 250 million pictures are uploaded daily.
  • 2.7 Billion “Likes” every day.

IS YOUR BUSINESS TAKING ADVANTAGE OF SOCIAL MEDIA?

Facebook has become a place where people, businesses and causes have become one. People have always relied on their friends for recommendations from what to buy, where to go and what’s new. These conversations are happening on Facebook! People want to connect with their favorite businesses and share it with their friends.

So whats in a campaign?

  • Step 1 – Setup – We will setup and or update a Facebook page for you.
  • Step 2 – Design –We will create custom graphics and a landing page for special deals.
  • Step 3 – Advertising -We will design a custom ad and advertise your page on Facebook for 6 weeks.
  • Step 4 – Branding & Promotions – We will layout 6 weeks of promotions to help generate likes, talk, and shares.
  • Step 5 – Evaluation & Review – After the 6 week campaign we will give you a review of the campaign, who you reached and what worked best.

Here are some recent Facebook Campaigns we have done:

Facebook is growing and businesses need to take advantage of this market. Building relationships with customers and reaching new people is important to the success of your business. Facebook and 5j Design can help! We can help you and your business reach new customers, interact with existing clients and help with influence on Facebook.

If you are interested in starting a Facebook campaign please contact us today: jake@5jdesign.com or zach@5jdesign.com

 

Lazy Eyes :: How we read online.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

You’re probably going to read this.

It’s a short paragraph at the top of the page. It’s surrounded by white space. It’s in small type.

To really get your attention, I should write like this:

  • Bulleted list
  • Occasional use of bold to prevent skimming
  • Short sentence fragments
  • Explanatory subheads
  • No puns
  • Did I mention lists?
Advertisement

What Is This Article About?
For the past month, I’ve been away from the computer screen. Now I’m back reading on it many hours a day. Which got me thinking: How do we read online?

It’s a Jungle Out There
That’s Jakob Nielsen‘s theory. He’s a usability expert who writes an influential biweekly column on such topics as eye-tracking research, Web design errors, and banner blindness. (Links, btw, give a text more authority, making you more likely to stick around.)

Nielsen champions the idea of information foraging. Humans are informavores. On the Internet, we hunt for facts. In earlier days, when switching between sites was time-consuming, we tended to stay in one place and dig. Now we assess a site quickly, looking for an “information scent.” We move on if there doesn’t seem to be any food around.

Sorry about the long paragraph. (Eye-tracking studies show that online readers tend to skip large blocks of text.)

Also, I’m probably forcing you to scroll at this point. Losing some incredible percentage of readers. Bye. Have fun on Facebook.

Screens vs. Paper
What about the physical process of reading on a screen? How does that compare to paper?

When you look at early research, it’s fascinating to see that even in the days of green phosphorus monitors, studies found that there wasn’t a huge difference in speed and comprehension between reading on-screen and reading on paper. Paper was the clear winner only when test subjects were asked to skim the text.

The studies are not definitive, however, given all the factors that can affect online reading, such as scrolling, font size, user expertise, etc. Nielsen holds that on-screen reading is 25 percent slower than reading on paper. Even so, experts agree on what you can do to make screen reading more comfortable:

  • Choose a default font designed for screen reading; e.g., Verdana, Trebuchet, Georgia.
  • Rest your eyes for 10 minutes every 30 minutes.
  • Get a good monitor. Don’t make it too bright or have it too close to your eyes.
  • Minimize reflections.
  • Skip long lines of text, which promote fatigue.
  • Avoid MySpace.

Back to the Jungle
Nielsen’s apt description of the online reader: “[U]sers are selfish, lazy, and ruthless.You, my dear user, pluck the low-hanging fruit. When you arrive on a page, you don’t actually deign to read it. You scan. If you don’t see what you need, you’re gone.

And it’s not you who has to change. It’s me, the writer:

  • One idea per paragraph
  • Half the word count of “conventional writing”! (Ouch!)
  • Other stuff along these lines

Nielsen often sounds like a cross between E.B. White and the Terminator. Here’s his advice in a column titled “Long vs. Short Articles as Content Strategy“: “A good editor should be able to cut 40 percent of the word count while removing only 30 percent of an article’s value. After all, the cuts should target the least valuable information.”

[Ed. Note: Fascinating asides about the writer's voice, idiosyncrasies, and fragile ego were cut here.]

He’s Right
I kid about Nielsen, but he’s very sensible. We’re active participants on the Web, looking for information and diversion. It’s natural that people prefer short articles. As Nielsen states, motivated readers who want to know everything about a subject (i.e., parents trying to get their kid into a New York preschool) will read long treatises with semicolons, but the rest of us are snacking. His advice: Embrace hypertext. Keep things short for the masses, but offer links for the Type A’s.

No Blogs, Though
Nielsen may be ruthless about brevity, but he doesn’t advocate blogging. Here’s his logic: “Such postings are good for generating controversy and short-term traffic, and they’re definitely easier to write. But they don’t build sustainable value.”

That’s a debatable point. My experience has been that a thoughtful blogger who tags his posts can cover a subject well. But Nielsen’s idea is that people will read (and maybe even pay) for expertise that they can’t find anywhere else. If you want to beat the Internet, you’re not going to do it by blogging (since even OK thinkers occasionally write a great blog post) but by offering a comprehensive take on a subject (thus saving the reader time from searching many sites) and supplying original thinking (offering trusted insight that cannot be easily duplicated by the nonexpert).

Like a lot of what Nielsen says, this is both obvious and thoughtful.

Ludic Reading
Nielsen focuses on how to hold people’s attention to convey information. He’s not overly concerned with pleasure reading.

Pleasure reading is also known as “ludic reading.” Victor Nell has studied pleasure reading (PDF). Two fascinating notions:

  • When we like a text, we read more slowly.
  • When we’re really engaged in a text, it’s like being in an effortless trance.

Ludic reading can be achieved on the Web, but the environment works against you. Read a nice sentence, get dinged by IM, never return to the story again.

I suppose ludic readers would be the little sloths hiding in the jungle while everyone else is out rampaging around for fresh meat.

Final Unnecessary Thought
We’ll do more and more reading on screens, but they won’t replace paper—never mind what your friend with a Kindle tells you. Rather, paper seems to be the new Prozac. A balm for the distracted mind. It’s contained, offline, tactile. William Powers writes about this elegantly in his essay “Hamlet’s BlackBerry: Why Paper Is Eternal.” He describes the white stuff as “a still point, an anchor for the consciousness.

Thanks

By

The Secret to Return Facebook Visits

The trick to Facebook is not just winning fans; it’s also about keeping them coming back. After all, what good are fans to you if they hit up your page once and then never return to see any new promotions or products?

A new report from Facebook marketing software provider Wildfire Interactive offers some advice on how to ensure repeat visits from people who have Liked your business page.

1. Tap into fan passions. You already know what your customers are passionate about (don’t you?), so your Facebook page should be a place for them to express that. “If you market for a fashion brand, talk about design, style, and haute couture,” says the report. “If you’re a food brand, ask for favorite recipes and opinions on food trends.”

Wildfire cites the example of online boutique Rue La La, which hosts a regular “live chat” on its Facebook page with a featured fashion stylist. Recently, the brand hosted a stylist from Elle.com, and added the stylist’s photo “both to make the post more personal and engaging, and to increase its EdgeRank weight.” (EdgeRank is the Facebook algorithm that determines what is displayed and how high in the News Feed. For a primer, click here.) Meanwhile, HomeAgain Pet Rescuers, a microchip and recovery service for pets, frequently shares videos of animals from YouTube or cute pictures from fans—but the posts that get the most engagement encourage people to answer questions about their own pets. The question, “Why and how did you choose your pet’s name?” spurred 432 Likes and a whopping 1,086 comments.

2. Ask simple, closed questions. This is somewhat intuitive: Unless there’s a major reward, would you rather do something that’s super-quick or one that takes time and effort? “One strategy to ensure engagement is to ask fans questions that are a breeze to answer,” observes the report. “The barrier to typing a one-word response…is very low, so more fans respond.” One brand Wildfire says does this successfully: The Verge, an online technology publication. Its questions are things such as “Android or iPhone?” or “What is your current Web browser?” but “because it chooses hot topics…it also prompts a lot of commentary from people who have more to say on the subject.” (For more on the secrets to a perfect Facebook post, click here.)

3. Tell fans what you want from them. Ending a post with “Like this post” results in much higher numbers of fans who do so. For example, Wildfire had to look no further than its own experience, pointing to two posts on its Facebook page with similar content, both with links to outside articles, and both with a similar number of impressions. “But the post with the instruction to “Click Like if you love the tool,” got twice as many Likes as the post without the instruction. This result is consistent with the results our clients get on their pages as well,” the report says. “The lesson: Never leave the next step up to interpretation—tell fans exactly what you want them to do.”

4. Treat your fans like VIPs. Give fans exclusive access to information you haven’t posted to your website, such as internal photographs of your team or company videos that won’t be shared any other way. You could also offer coupons, giveaways and sweepstakes, which get the highest amount of entries on average, says Wildfire. One example: Dunkin’ Donuts gets “week after week of quality engagement” for a “Fan of the Week” sweepstakes that encourages fans to submit photos of themselves with the company’s products. The winner has their picture featured on the Dunkin’ Donuts page, among other treats.

5. Invite one-on-one interactions. Make your relationship more personal by responding to your fans by name when possible, and by answering comments one-on-one. This “proves that you’re listening and are receptive to their comments and feedback,” according to the report. “And that means they’re more likely to keep posting.” This is as simple as it sounds, with Wildfire showing a screenshot of Tide detergent’s Facebook page, responding to a comment with “Awww….thanks Sheila!”

6. Humanize your brand. In some ways this is an extension of the “VIP” idea, with Wildfire’s research showing that people get excited about behind-the-scenes glimpses. (“It works for DVD and Blu-Ray sales, and it works on Facebook fan pages too,” notes the report.) The Holland America cruise line posted about its tradition of lunches for new employees, and Wildfire itself posted about ringing a cowbell, which signifies the launch of a new full-service campaign. (Wildfire’s post received 50 Likes within an hour of its being published.)

 

By Business Writers

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JPEG what? A user guide to understanding JPEG

JPEG 101: A Crash Course Guide on JPEG

JPEG, a compression algorithm optimized for photographic images, is something we encounter on a regular basis. JPEG is not limited to a certain amount of color (unlike GIF, for example) and is popular due to its variable compression range, meaning that you’re able to more easily control the amount of compression, and consequently, the resultant image quality. In this guide, we will discuss the important things you need to know about JPEG.

 

Quick Overview of JPEG

Here is a list of things you should know about JPEG:

  • JPEG is a lossy compression algorithm; this means that it discards some data from an image to reduce its file size
  • JPEG is often pronounced as “jay peg”
  • JPEG is an acronym for Joint Photographic Experts Group, the organization that developed the JPEG format
  • .jpg and .jpeg are the most common file extensions of images compressed using JPEG compression algorithm; they are the same, but old DOS systems have a 3-character limit on file extensions — modern operating systems recognize both .jpg and .jpeg
  • Other file formats that use the JPEG compression algorithm are .jpe, .jfif and .jif

Semantics and Disambiguation: JPEG vs. JFIF/Exif

Many people refer to any image format that uses the JPEG compression algorithm as a “JPEG file.” However, most image-capturing devices (such as a digital camera) and image-editing programs actually create a file in the JFIF or Exif format. For all intents and purposes, when people say “JPEG file” or when a software application says they’re saving your work in JPEG, you can just think of it as a file that uses the JPEG algorithm, whether it’s really JFIF or Exif.

Why Use JPEG?

JPEG allows you to control the degree of “lossiness” by adjusting compression parameters. This way, you can achieve very small files with just the minimum amount of quality that you really need.

The second important advantage of JPEG is that it stores full color information: 24 bits per pixel (that means 16 million colors). GIF, another image format widely used on the web, can only store 8 bits per pixel (256 colors). This capacity for storing colors is why JPEG compression is great for displaying images that have rich colors and that are photographic in quality.

JPEG Compression

Opposite to the PNG format (which uses a lossless compression algorithm), JPEG uses a lossy compression method.

Lossy compression reduces the image size by discarding information. Think of lossy compression as an excellent book summary of just the important and interesting parts of a book you’re reading. For example, you could summarize a book that’s long-winded and redundant in prose, to just a page worth of notes containing only the information that’s really important.

The problem, then, is when you want to recreate the original book from your one-page book summary; it wouldn’t be possible.

The other problem is that if you continue to summarize the book summary again, then you’ll lose more fidelity and accuracy from the original book.

With lossy compression, compressing an image again means losing more data, which means reduced image quality.

Baseline JPEG vs. Progressive JPEG

JPEG come in two flavors: baseline and progressive. Baseline JPEG is an image created using the JPEG compression algorithm that will start to display the image as the data is made available, line by line. In a web browser, you can see JPEG images that are in baseline format when you see it slowly showing up, from the top of the image, to the bottom of it.

Progressive JPEG displays an image in such a way that it shows a blurry/low-quality photo in its entirety, and then becomes clearer as the image’s data becomes more fully downloaded.

Baseline JPEG vs. Progressive JPEG

Progressive is good because the user gets an idea of what the image will be right from the start, even though it’s not as clear as the final image, which is great especially for people with slower Internet connections. The progressive JPEG format also enhances perceived web page performance because it doesn’t appear to be loading in increments, unlike baseline.

JPEG Baseline/Progressive Format in Photoshop

When you use Photoshop’s Save As feature (File > Save As) to output your work in JPEG format, you will be presented with the following Format Options:

JPEG Baseline/Progressive Format in Photoshop

  • Baseline: the image will be displayed line by line on the screen
  • Baseline Optimized: Same as Baseline, but optimized further using Huffman coding
  • Progressive: You can specify 3-5 scans, meaning that it will have between 3-5 phases before it shows the final image

When to Use JPEG

Photographic images that are rich/high in color are where JPEG compression is most suited.

Use JPEG when you want better/easier control of the amount of compression that you want to use for your images. This helps you in in maximization for small file size versus quality.

When JPEG Should Be Avoided

The JPG algorithm isn’t good for images with sharp edges such as text, cartoon drawings, and so forth. You should choose PNG or GIF for such images.

Also, when you have files that are simple in color, such as logos, icons, favicons, and vector drawings, you will get lower file sizes and the same (or better) quality as JPEG. To learn more about JPEG vs. PNG/GIF, read the Web Designer’s Guide to PNG Image Format.

When JPEG Should Be Avoided

Saving JPEGs in Photoshop

The following shows a comparison of the same image saved in various levels of JPEG compression.

Original
Original, file size: 23.2 KB Very High, file size: 21.8KB
High, file size: 14.6 KB Medium, file size: 6.73 KB
Low, file size: 3.78 KB 0 quality, file size: 2.72 KB

JPEG Compression Under the Microscope

Here are the micro-differences of a zoomed-in, 8x8px area of the image above, from original to lowest quality:

Is Transparency Using JPEG Possible?

JPEG does not currently support traditional transparency. If you need transparency, such as when you are setting an image on top of another and want to allow the background to show through it, you should use a compression algorithm that supports transparency, like PNG or GIF.

Here is a simulation of JPEG vs. PNG transparency:

simulation of JPEG vs. PNG transparency

WebP: A New Image Format That Rivals JPEG

WebP is a new image format that provides lossy compression for photographic images, just like JPEG. A while ago, Google announced the WebP (pronounced “weppy”) graphics format along with its research. The research indicates that using it could cut image file sizes by 40% compared to the dominant JPEG file format. This means faster file transfers and reduced network burden.

As many web browsers don’t support it (yet), it’s currently ineffective for web use. Read more about WebP.

Practical Tips for Using JPEG

  • Use Smush.it as a further optimizing tool for your JPEGs; it’s a lossless optimizer, so quality is retained
  • To achieve lossless editing of JPEG files (such as cropping or rotating), you can use Jpegtran
  • If you’re looking for a good alternative to the JPEG format, then PNG-24 is a good alternative; it will have a bigger file size for photographic images, but it uses a lossless compression
  • If a JPEG image is opened, edited, and saved again, it results in additional image degradation, so when you’re editing an image in multiple sessions, save the intermediate image in an uncompressed/raw format such as TIFF or the editing software’s native format (e.g. .psd for Adobe Photoshop or .psp for PaintShop Pro)

Great article by: Catalin Rosured-team-design.com, @catalinred.

First impressions | websites with visual impact

Remember when you dated, or maybe you’re dating now? How crucial is the first impression? For many this determines how the rest of the date will proceed. We have all been there preparing to look our best before we meet our date. The goal is to impress the other person and to keep their attention on you. But do we apply this same principle to our business?

Take a second and go look at two of our recent websites we did for K & J Trucking and Omega Maiden

  

Like the look of these websites? Whatever the answer (and hopefully it was yes), the chances are you made your mind up within the first twentieth of a second. A study by researchers in Canada has shown that the snap decisions Internet users make about the quality of a web page have a lasting impact on their opinions.

We all know that first impressions count, but this study shows that the brain can make flash judgements almost as fast as the eye can take in the information. The discovery came as a surprise to some experts. “My colleagues believed it would be impossible to really see anything in less than 500 milliseconds,” says Gitte Lindgaard of Carleton University in Ottawa, who has published the research in the journal Behaviour and Information Technology1. Instead they found that impressions were made in the first 50 milliseconds of viewing.

Lindgaard and her team presented volunteers with the briefest glimpses of web pages previously rated as being either easy on the eye or particularly jarring, and asked them to rate the websites on a sliding scale of visual appeal. Even though the images flashed up for just 50 milliseconds, roughly the duration of a single frame of standard television footage, their verdicts tallied well with judgements made after a longer period of scrutiny.

In the crowded and competitive world of the web, companies hoping to make millions from e-commerce should take notice, the researchers say.

“Unless the first impression is favorable, visitors will be out of your site before they even know that you might be offering more than your competitors,” -Lindgaard

First impressions

For a typical commercial website, 60% of traffic comes from search engines such as Google, says Marc Caudron of London web-design agency Pod1. This makes a user’s first impression even more critical, he explains.

“You’ll get a list of sites, click the top one, and then either say ‘I’ve engaged’ and give it a few more seconds, or just go back to Google,” he says.

The lasting effect of first impressions is known to psychologists as the ‘halo effect’: if you can snare people with an attractive design, they are more likely to overlook other minor faults with the site, and may rate its actual content (such as this article, for example) more favorably.

This is because of ‘cognitive bias’, Lindgaard explains. People enjoy being right, so continuing to use a website that gave a good first impression helps to ‘prove’ to themselves that they made a good initial decision. The phenomenon pervades our society; even doctors have been shown to follow their initial hunches, Lindgaard says, relying heavily on a patient’s most immediately obvious symptom when making a diagnosis. “It’s awfully scary stuff, but the tendency to jump to conclusions is far more widespread than we realize,” she says.

Beauty and beholder

So what are the key ingredients of a good-looking website? Caudron suggests that the amount of graphics on the page should be strictly limited, perhaps to a single eye-catching image. “It’s not about getting as much stuff on the page as possible,” he says.

These days, enlightened web users want to see a “puritan” approach, Caudron adds. It’s about getting information across in the quickest, simplest way possible. For this reason, many commercial websites now follow a fairly regular set of rules. For example, westerners tend to look at the top-left corner of a page first, so that’s where the company logo should go. And most users also expect to see a search function in the top right.

Of course, says Caudron, the other golden rule is to make sure that your web pages load quickly, otherwise your customers might not stick around long enough to make that coveted first impression. “That can be the difference between big business and no business,” he says.

This week I want to challenge you to do 3 things:

  1. Go look at your website, and write down 5 things you like and 5 things you dislike.
  2. Ask 3 people to go look at your website and give you the same feedback (5 likes & 5 dislike).
  3. Start changing the things you dislike about your website and begin to create a site that has visual impact.

Original article on nature.com by Michael Hopkin Carleton University

-Zach Bauer | 5j Design

29 ways to stay creative

Have you ever gotten your vehicle stuck? Maybe in the snow or mud. You know your stuck almost before it happens, this feeling of “oh no” what am I going to do…for most we think we can get ourselves unstuck. We gas the vehicle and turn the wheels, we rock it back and forth. And what ends up happening is we get ourselves stuck even worse. For most people getting stuck is the worst possible scenario. This is true also with creativity. Many times we hit a rut creatively and no matter how hard we try and push through we eventually succumb to the “creative dead zone”, a place of blank screens and doodles of 3d boxes. But how do we avoid this creative rut? I recently ran across a list of 29 ways to stay creative.

Today I want to pass on some tips and tricks to keep yourself fresh.

  1. Make lists
  2. Carry a notebook everywhere
  3. Try free writing
  4. Get away from the computer
  5. Quit beating yourself up
  6. Take breaks
  7. Sing in the shower
  8. Drink coffee (I couldn’t agree more, but I would like to re-word this to: “Drink good coffee”. In this day in age we have so many great roasters and coffee shops available to us. Read this article if you would like to learn How to choose good coffee . Two of my favorite coffee roasters and shops in Sioux Falls are Coffea and Black Sheep. If you live in the area be sure to go and get a cup of coffee.)
  9. Listen to new music (This for me is one of the greatest ways to be inspired. I will frequently go listen to the Billboard top 100 and listen to whats popular. This works best if you listen to music outside of your preferences (country, hip hop, folk, etc).
  10. Be open
  11. Surround yourself with creative people
  12. Get feedback (Feedback is great, but it depends on who you seek it from. Nothing is worse than getting feedback from someone who doesn’t understand your project and bases everything off of their preferences. The best feedback is from those who have a different perspective then yours but still understands the purpose of feedback.)
  13. Collaborate
  14. Don’t give up
  15. Practice
  16. Allow yourself to make mistakes
  17. Go somewhere new
  18. Count your blessings
  19. Get lot’s of rest
  20. Take risks
  21. Break rules
  22. Don’t force it
  23. Read a page out of the dictionary
  24. Create a framework
  25. Stop trying to be someone else’s perfect
  26. Got an idea…write it down (This is a fantastic practice. This is even easier today with the technology of iphones and droids and the thousands of apps available to write ideas, capture pics & videos. Do yourself a favor and start this today!)
  27. Clean your workspace
  28. Have fun
  29. Finish something

 

-Zach Bauer, 5J Design

29 ways to stay creative by http://paulzii.tumblr.com/post/3360025995

Welcome to Graphic Design Sioux Falls

Thanks for visiting, glad to have you hear checking out our site. Graphicdesignsiouxfalls.com is the official blog of 5j Design LLC. It’s purpose is to serve Sioux Falls with great resources for graphic design, from tip and tricks to resources for getting great graphic design. We hope you enjoy our posts and find your time on our site refereshing and fun. Talk to you again soon!

Jake