I love finding a great tool or gadget to make my life a little easier, so I’ve put a collection of my 10 favourite websites, apps and general tools to share with you that will (hopefully) make your day-to-day design life just that bit sweeter.
Use one I haven’t mentioned? Why not share it below!
A free image service providing stunning, high-res imagery that you can use on your next project. “You can copy, modify, distribute, and use the images, even for commercial purposes, all without asking for permission or giving credits to the artist.” Which is a dream come true from the hefty cost of its cousin company Shutterstock.
New Old Stock
Similar to Pixabay this service is dedicated to really cool, copyright free, images of a time gone by. They’re a great source of inspiration but beware do check the usage as some aren’t for commercial use.
Fonts In Use
This is a great website for discovering styles and fonts on well-known CD covers, adverts, magazines, you name it they’ve got a font for it!
So you’ve used ‘Fonts in Use’ now be inspired with thousands of free fonts from DaFont. Great way to reinvent the wheel with so much choice at your fingertips.
Is a particular font causing you a serious headache? Simply upload a screenshot of the font in question and match them up. Alternatively, you could use the Chrome extension Whatfont? I use this regularly for client sites when branding is so critical using Gill over Helvetica really does make a difference – simply click, hover and discover web-friendly fonts to use online.
Full Page Screen Capture
This little app can be found on Google’s App Store, perfect for getting full screenshots of any live site. Note: don’t navigate away from the page or it will stop taking the picture.
Similar to getting the right brand font, brand colours also play a big role. In comes ColorZilla, ideal for colour picking direct from a website. It’ll automatically save the hex colour for you to use and it’ll keep a log of your colour history so if you need it again, it’s right there.
Their cheat sheet, in particular, is something to admire. I’ve been there with typographic characters – simply copy and pasting to make something work, now there’s no need! Whether you need to know how to create a symbol on a Mac, Windows or as a piece of HTML coding it’s all there for you.
This isn’t exclusively useful to designers but a really pleasing nice piece of kit. Rather Nice will give you a lovely message every time you open a new tab. I know, amazing. Tell everyone.
A Google App more for web designers but also pleasing for those who love a great piece of satisfying design. Perfect for developing interfaces, simply apply a grid layer on top for guidance help.