During a creative process, you might feel that you are stuck. That is very typical of every designer and they all have their different practices to overcome such obstacles. In the following, let me share 3 steps with you that might help to avoid these challenges.
1. A familiar walkway
Before starting to design a new website I usually spend hours getting some inspiration from creative blogs. You might want to check out Siteinspire, UIJar, Minimal Gallery, or Httpster for that. These sites list other websites carefully selected by curators — and it goes without saying that they are all market leaders when it comes to design. So yes, usually this is my primary source of inspiration.
It may also come in handy to follow the activities of these blogs on a daily basis. On the one hand, you might get an up-to-date picture of the evolution of current design trends — on the other hand, you also have the chance to develop another perspective for brainstorming on innovative solutions.
2. A more exciting experience
I truly believe that it is highly important for a brand to have a solid identity in the online sphere. This identity is built on sharing your own photos, sharpe layout, unique illustrations, and icons on your website. The more unique solutions you design for a given website, the more unique impression it will make on users.
At the same time, if you want to provide a proper user experience, you should bear in mind that interactions, animations, and other layout solutions could also come into the picture, and all these just not necessarily boost usability (what is more they can be extremely time-consuming and pricy).
You can discover more and more websites on the international market, where designers apply solutions that come against user-friendliness (at least it does not imply the opposite). This trend probably comes from the websites of creative studios, but I still think that it naturally comes with services and products nowadays that regard themselves as modern. I believe that the reason behind that is unknown things usually bring excitement to people. Of course, it might generate positive feelings in users, and this way they can get more attached to the given website or brand.
It doesn’t mean, however, that we have to create non-user-friendly solutions in most cases. It only means that we have to develop a more open-minded and creative perspective during the design process and let those create and unframed solutions apply if needed.
3. A step back
In his book Dancing About Architecture, Phil Beadle an award-winning teacher and award-winning broadcaster writes that creativity is manifested in the ability to connect and interpret several seemingly unrelated things as new things. In light of this, when we get stuck in the planning process, it’s worth stepping back one step and looking at the problem from another, more objective perspective. We are looking for alternative sources of inspiration!
During the design of the icon set designed for Balasys, I repeatedly felt like I was deadlocked. I couldn’t definite to myself what the problem was with the designed icons, but I felt like something was missing and I needed a new perspective. To do this, I had to find a new source of inspiration. I started flipping through an album about contemporary sculpture. The tracks on the album didn’t have much of an impact on me, but they reminded me of the importance of perspective. Without exception, I designed the icons I had made so far in a plane. After that, I started adding icons designed in an isometric perspective to the set. This tiny recognition helped steer design in new ways.
I hope the points outlined above can help us plan fresher, more vibrant things. I trust that incorporating these practices into our design process will benefit both customers and users.