Free tools that help designers and developers be more awesome at life in general.
Every web designer or web developer needs to cultivate a set of tools and skill-sets that enables them to work effectively and efficiently. In this post we’re going to introduce a set of free tools and web resources that should be included every web guy’s tool box.
960 Grid System
Download Resource: www.960.gs
There is some debate whether to begin a web design in Photoshop or just dive right into coding your mark-up. There is nothing wrong either way. For most it’s a matter of preference. I choose to start my designs in Illustrator or Photoshop utilizing the 960 Grid System. “The 960 Grid System is an effort to streamline web development work flow by providing commonly used dimensions, based on a width of 960 pixels.” – 960.gs website. This is a fantastic tool that allows you to keep your content spaced nicely and help achieve a more cohesive design across multiple pages. Head on over to 960.gs for the download and check out TheGridSystem.org for more information pertaining to grid design.
IAB Banner Template
Designers are often asked to create a web banner of different sizes for many different reasons. I’ve created a Photoshop template that houses the most common IAB banners sizes allowing the designer to create and manage their many different banners in a single Photoshop document. This was created in-house and is FREE for the world to share, edit and redistribute.
When you open the document you’ll see the standard IAB banner sizes. Every banner size is nicely layered and contains four different folders F1, F2, F3, and Stat. The first three are meant for animated banners. Frame 1 design, frame 2 design, and frame 3 design. The “Stat” folder is where a static design goes. This allows a designer to print out and critique each frame of an animated banner.
Creative Campaign Template
Enterprise designers are often asked to create marketing creatives and concepts that include landing pages, HTML emails, and banners. This template allows you to work on all three at the same time. This can help speed up the production time by working in the same document and allowing you to make sure your message is consistent across the marketing pieces.
That’s three things to add to your toolbox this month. So now, when your boss gets excited because of all the cheddar you’ve saved on your projects and asks, “However can I thank you Mr. Designer?” You can say, “Tell the PPC guys to quit blowing their budgets on software that doesn’t work, they need to get with SiteWit!” …Cheap plug -sorry.
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