photo sites preview

Affordable (and Free!) Stock Photo Sites

If you’ve ever found yourself working on a project searching for just the right image, but only finding overpriced stocky looking images instead, you are not alone. My frustrations peaked about 2 years ago when I was working on collateral for a law practice (do photos get stockier than that?) and, after going through shutterstock, istock and yes, even ridiculously priced getty, I’d had enough. I knew there had to be a site with photos priced for real people that weren’t so obviously staged. So, after searching the typical sites, I adjusted my google query, panned + mined, then struck gold. This week, I’m here to share the photo wealth :) Read on for my go-to sites for the best in free + affordable photos. Read more…

halftone texture preview

How to Create and Apply a Halftone Texture in Photoshop

The other week on every-tuesday’s facebook page, Valarie asked how to replicate the texture seen on this ice cream cone. This week, I’m here to deliver the answer! In this tutorial, we’ll create our own halftone texture, then apply it to a similar ice cream cone to replicate the same effect. As a bonus, I’m including the ice cream cone used in the tutorial as a psd file for free so you can follow along exactly if you’d like. Click read more for the download and to see how it’s all done! Read more…

freebie 10 hand drawn decorative dividers

Freebie: 10 Hand Drawn Decorative Dividers

I think this blog is a little overdue for a freebie! With the templates I create, I usually draw out a bunch of different elements, scan them in, then clean them up – very much the same process I use for vectorizing hand lettering. There are always some elements I wish I had used, but they never quite make it onto the design. This week’s freebie are some of my favorite hand drawn dividers that I plan on using for something, but rather than leave them sitting in a folder, I’m giving all 10 of them to you! Each divider comes as an ai, eps + psd file for versions of Illustrator and Photoshop, CS3 or newer. Read on for the download link! Read more…

a day in my life as a graphic designer

A Day in My Life as a Graphic Designer

Happy Tuesday, friends! Last week Shirla emailed me and requested a video describing a typical day in my life as a graphic designer. I loved the idea, so I decided to document my day last Friday in photos from the morning commute to coming home to my home office/studio set up. So! In this week’s video, I’m here to talk about it all! I walk you through my work’s studio, where I sit, the equipment I use on my desk at work, how I spend my day at work, then a mini home office tour where Spencer and I work on our own things on week nights and weekends. I hope this little glimpse will benefit anyone interested in graphic design, just starting out – or maybe give other graphic designers something to compare their own experiences to. I know it’s something I always wondered about :) Read on for links to all the equipment I use and the video walk through! Read more…

laying out your lettering for letterpress

Laying out Your Lettering For Letterpress

Happy Tuesday! This past weekend was reallllly busy for me! I designed our wedding invitations and recorded a Skillshare class on the entire process from start to finish: all of the research, sketches, lettering experiments, then finally setting up and saving the file correctly so it’s ready to hand off to my letterpress printer. You can watch the free intro to the class (called Laying out Your Lettering for Letterpress) here and just for my blog readers and YouTube watchers, I’m sharing one the other videos today. This video covers the sketching process of lettering based on research which determined the look and feel we were going for (Southern rustic). If you’re interested in seeing the rest of the class, you can sign up for Skillshare free of charge for an entire month using this sign up link. Read more…

brush script fonts to increase your text drive

Brush Script Fonts to Increase your Text Drive

Brush script style fonts have been gaining in popularity – from hand drawn versions to vector point-perfect variations. Brush script styles lend themselves to applications with character and personality, an artsy organic feel, or just an extra human touch. This versatility gives brush scripts a well deserved spot in any font library. Here are a few for free and for a fee to round out your brush script font collection. Read more…

create a hand lettered photo composition tutorial

Create a Hand Lettered Photo Composition

There are a lot of tutorials out there on how to create hand lettering, but far fewer on what you can do once you create your lettering. In this week’s tutorial, we’ll create a hand lettered photo composition using just photoshop. We’ll start with placing and coloring our lettering on a chosen photo, then go over the basics of masking and applying environmental shadows to give the final piece a polished look. As a bonus, I’m including the lettering used in the tutorial so you can follow along exactly if you’d like. Let’s get started! Read more…

twenty nine

Twenty Nine

Holy moly. I turn 29 tomorrow. This year is a big year! I’m marrying that handsome fella in September and I have so many things planned for the blog, youtube, and maybe some other little surprises peppered in :) It’s amazing how many things start falling into place when you spend time on the things that really bring you happiness.

I feel like we all kind of say ‘jeez, I wish I would have done that sooner’ to new things we try and enjoy as we start noticing years go by more quickly. I feel that way a lot with this blog and my youtube channel, but I remind myself that I need to say ‘I’m so glad I started the blog and my youtube channel’ instead. The past year and a half has brought so much to my life. I currently make no money off of this blog or youtube but they provide me so much incentive to create something new every week. I love you guys. Thank you a million for your comments, your visits + your views. They really mean a lot to me.

Anyway, sorry for getting so sappy, but thank you for a very happy birthday this year! Looking forward to spending many more with you all. Have an extra happy weekend :)

Typins 03 preview

Typins: 03

Welcome to Typins #3! This post is where I share my recent favorite typography pins from pinterest. Here are 8 more inspiration-inducing pins to get your type on ;) Read more…

digitally letter the number 3 two ways

Digitally Letter the Number 3 Two Ways

Happy Tuesday! I’ve had a few requests for more lettering tutorials, so I’m here to deliver! I’ve also made a lettering playlist which you can check out here where I’ll keep them all together :)

In this week’s quick tip video tutorial, we’ll digitally letter the number 3 two ways. For the first way, we’ll be using this Wacom tablet (or any of these) and the brush tool in Illustrator. After that, we’ll digitally letter the same number 3 from scratch using just the pen tool. We’ll go over the best way to plot your points and basic point handle adjustments using the direct select tool in Illustrator. Let’s get started! Read more…