Graphic Design & Web Development

Design - from all angles

A blog about design, though not in the strictest sense of the word. Marketing / branding resources and musings of a web and graphic designer who sees the world through Pantone-colored glasses and a 12-column responsive grid. {Subscribe to the RSS feed here: RSS}

Running on Default - Harmless or Risky?

Nyla Smith | Tuesday, August 16, 2016

It’s a wonderful thing to have choices. The reality, however, is that we often rely on the default instead of making conscious decisions to the contrary. This isn’t inherently a bad thing, but this tendency does affect all areas of our lives, including our business marketing. Read Article »

Lessons from the Creation of the 2016 Olympics Logo

Nyla Smith | Thursday, July 28, 2016

With the summer Olympics right around the corner, I’m sure you’re excited to watch the world’s best in swimming, volleyball, and gymnastics. And the one player making an appearance at every sport? The Olympics logo, of course. Read on for the fascinating story of how the official Rio 2016 logo and font came to be, and some lessons you can learn from the process.  Read Article »

Reading the Signs: Design on the Road

Nyla Smith | Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Want a surefire way to get graphic designers all riled up? Replace a good typeface with a bad one… all over America. Read Article »

How Nike Failed at User Testing

Nyla Smith | Thursday, June 30, 2016

Business owners can learn an important lesson from Nike’s latest showing at Wimbledon. Mainly that "just do it" should never supercede "just think it through". In this case, that means designing products with the end-user in mind; which, in the world of web design, comes in the form of user testing or user experience. Read Article »

Email Scams Targeting Business Owners

Nyla Smith | Tuesday, March 08, 2016

What's that your momma always said? “If it seems too good to be true, it probably is.” But ma! The flip side — "don't look a gift horse in the mouth", right? No. That's not even what that means. Listen to your mother and beware this common email scam. Read Article »

Balancing Marketing with Social Responsibility

Nyla Smith | Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Sir Isaac Newton’s third law of physics states that every action has a reaction. But you don’t have to get beaned on the head with an apple to realize the universal laws of physics also apply to marketing.  Read Article »

The Secret Life of Sensations: How Design Affects Perception

Nyla Smith | Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Can something as basic as design affect customers’ perception of your product? Big. Fat. YES! But how, you ask? Take a peek behind the curtain and discover for yourself the psychological magic of “sensation transference.” Read Article »

A New Flag for New Zealand?

Nyla Smith | Tuesday, September 22, 2015

New Zealand is on the hunt for a new flag design. On September 1, after sifting through a mere 10,292 submissions, officials revealed the top four design contenders to replace the country’s flag. As opinions from New Zealanders on the proposed designs have been mixed and mostly negative, we have to ask – just what makes for a good flag design? Read Article »

"I" is for: Italic (Faux vs. True)

Nyla Smith | Tuesday, September 15, 2015

The Leaning Tower of Pisa is a larger-than-life illustration of "when bad italics happen to good fonts." This Leaning Tower Phenomenon, if you will, often occurs as a byproduct of good people who just don't know any better. Read on to make sure you're not committing this typographical sin. Read Article »

Plagiarism and the 2020 Olympics Logo

Nyla Smith | Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Plagiarism is a pretty big deal when you’re accused of copying your high school English paper. It’s an even bigger deal when you’re accused of stealing the 2020 Summer Olympics logo design. Ruh roh, Raggy… Read Article »


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