Wednesday, December 19

5 of the most inspirational and useful design links

Here is a tiny compendium of some very inspirational, useful and mind-blowing design weblinks. No matter if you're a seasoned veteran of design or a casual observer who enjoys the occasional eye-candy this list will be enjoyable to you. So in no particular order...

#1: Is a supremely interesting site! Not only are they responsible for who provide frequently updated critique, review and analysis of various re-designs (where readers can comment at will) they also provide us with very insightful and up to date articles about all things design and links to other incredibly useful stuff, most notably The Design Encyclopedia. Perhaps a little too specialized for the casual observer but worthy of note.

#2: If you just like to look at cool stuff, this next link is for you. The AIGA Design Archives is likely the most user-friendly source of inspiration and aesthetic enjoyment one can find on the internet. Of course AIGA itself is a giant resource providing all kinds of great materials, but I invariably find myself exploring the archives above anything else. This ever-changing panoply of concepts, ideas and creations is one of the most entertaining things one can find on the internet. You can customize your viewing experience by filtering out certain categories or browse in pre-organized collections. Make sure you have some time before you go explore this though. I guarantee, an hour is quickly eaten up in there!

#3 Von Glitschka A.K.A. Vonster is one of our generations top designers and not without reason. His sense of design is one of the most unique, matched only by his sense of humor and generosity. His website is chock full of free and fun stuff you can view and download. Podcasts, bizarre inventions and many other things make this site overwhelmingly fun. If it weren't so cliche I would say that* is a veritable cornucopia of awesomeness. Darn I said it didn't I?

*related to is which is also presented to us by Von Glitschka.

#4: Now I'm going to open a disclaimer here. I know that some of my designer friends will want to punch me in the ear for putting this next link on my list. But I'll just say that I have very good reasons for doing so and I will lay them out and please don't punch me, please! is an archive of free downloadable fonts. The reason many designers would gladly beat me with a stick for touting this site as inspirational is that so many of the fonts uploaded to the site are very bad! Nay horrible! So why espouse it's value? Well for one, it's free. Designers and non-designers alike can easily find crazy free fonts and just play with them! Though I much prefer the thoughtfully designed fonts one would find at a true blue type foundry such as P22 or fontshop the thing is that I am limited to viewing the typefaces. Those are more serious type resources that I would use on a professional level. But is more of a toy for messing around and playing with type and in my opinion this playing around is very healthy for the creative mind and thus I find it inspirational. So go ahead and play! But watch out for those crazy designer types while you're doing it.

#5: I admit it, I'm a logo-holic. That's the first step to recovery isn't it? Out of the myriad websites dedicated to logos, brands, identity design I must choose one. The task proves to be difficult. My reflex is to go for logolounge but that site only reveals it's full potential to members. Logopond is cool but has a rather overwhelming set up. To my knowledge nobody does as well balanced and stellar a job of promoting the values of identity design as Identity Works. Featuring precisely organized reviews of countless brands to enlightening articles on the issue of identity design in general Identity Works does everything with style, professionalism and grace. This site combined with the aforementioned spells a lethal cocktail for the logo-holic.

So there you have it! A short list of great design inspiration. Of course there are many others. We didn't even touch on web design, package design and so many other things. So help me out! Do you have websites you particularly like for design, photography, art or any other kind of inspiration? Share the wealth!

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Shayla said...

Hi Jace,
I like It's full of great design inspiration. Some of the contributors are fine artists, but the majority are in illustration. Each week has a theme assignment and competition. It's useful for 'filling up the well of creativity' and for networking with different illustrators. Checking out your favorites will often send you to websites with a variety of graphic design work.

Brian Branch said...

Thanks, these are great links to be visited or revisited.

Juggling Jason said...

you are very welcome brian!

Tanner Christensen said...

I don't know about these links being the most inspirational and useful, but they are definitely very inspiring, and very useful.

And just for future reference: you can't forget ;)