I learned about Summary Blocks from the Squarespace blog post about magazine-style layouts. I use a Summary Block to display featured posts in the sidebar. I also use them to create "Pinterest-style" galleries for a few category archives. They're really versatile. You can also use them to create recent post thumbnails or display your content as lists or grids. Check out the step-by-step tutorial and screencast at Squarespace. Below are the settings I use for the sidebar featured-posts and Pinterest-style galleries, if you're curious.Read More
I enjoy rap. I like to blast it in my headset. I like the boom and the base, and the lyrics are fun and clever, sometimes hilarious, and sometimes genius. Yes, rap can be raw and raunchy and angry and offensive, but it's honest and real, and I think it's that very essence of rebellion and defiance that many of us admire. The attitude is very in-your-face. Perhaps listening to rap makes me feel a little rougher and tougher, like a wannabe party girl or gangsta, which I'm not at all. But I suppose I like that gritty confidence vicariously* in my boring (which I appreciate), sheltered life.
I've noticed that rap and hip hop have inspired many of you in the graphic design world, too. How about these cute yellow and monochrome iPhone cases from Saturday? Aren't they party rap sound bites from songs by Young MC and MC Hammer? And what about those power positive affirmation tattoos from Tattly and those catchy posters from Paper Jam Press? I think they're something like a phenomenon. Anyway, this is my first (and perhaps last) music-inspired links loved post, dedicated to all you lovers of rap and hip hop.Read More
I've been doing some exercises in Illustrator today, mostly about placing images and then converting them into vector format. I'm amazed that the vector version is composed of thousands of paths. The computation power behind it astounds me, and even more so when I remember that the vector version can conceivably be produced as billboard-sized images without degradation, if one were so inclined.
I finished Lynda's Illustrator CS6 Essentials a couple of weeks ago. I learned a lot. The class goes through the basics --- you know, like how to add text, work with layers, use the libraries and brushes, make patterns, create shapes, trace, and work with bezier curves, etc, etc. While going through the course, I had a good handle on the material, but afterwards, I immediately started to forget the steps on how to do certain things. So, I bought Classroom in a Book as an ongoing reference, but mainly, I bought it for the exercises. Lynda's a good place for show and tell lectures, but a companion textbook with extra exercises is always a nice thing to have. Practice practice practice.Read More