The studio of Jarrod Drysdale,
designer, writer, & consultant.

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I write about design, freelancing, product making, and more. I also post some of the articles from my weekly design newsletter, Critique, here. To get all my articles, sign up for the newsletter.

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Repetition is a boring-sounding design principle, but ignore it at your own peril.

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Using color in design isn’t quite as intuitive as you might expect.

For me, color took years to master. Here’s some advice about how to use color well in digital design.

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Proximity and Space are like punctuation in your design.

Learn why proximity and space are important tools and why mastering them will help you make better designs.

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Using a grid doesn’t guarantee the alignment in your design is correct.

Learn how alignment affects the quality of your design and why using a Grid system isn’t enough to ensure your designs use alignment properly.

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You are learning typography the wrong way.

Instead of memorizing type classifications and terms for obscure pieces of letterforms—things that will never actually help you create a design—you need to focus on how you use typography.

Let’s reboot your knowledge of typography and focus on what matters: using type to create great design.

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Planning design projects is essential, but we designers either tend to ignore it completely or go way overboard.

Watch this video and begin to unlearn the misconceptions you have about the design process.

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You don’t have memorize a long list of steps and follow them perfectly in order to create a design.

Let’s reboot what you know about design process, so you can finally discover your own process that helps you be more productive.

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If you’re like most designers, every time you begin a new design project you look for new inspiration.

You browse design blogs and galleries, flip through magazines and books, and review your old projects looking for a new thread to follow.

But when you find that inspiration, how often does that early idea remain part of the final design?

The truth is that there are better ways to grow as a designer than an endless pursuit of inspiration.

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Work smarter. Keep pushing. Be more productive.

These are the mantras we follow while doing creative work, but sometimes they accomplish the opposite of what we want.

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Do you dream of opening an agency or becoming a creative director?

Many designers claim this at some point during our careers, and the dream is certainly exciting. We imagine working for prestigious clients, having a professionally designed office space downtown, and living the good life designing creative, amazing things.

If you could open your own agency or become a creative director you would get all kinds of creative freedom. You could fight for the important aspects of creative work and finally have control over the final product.

But I’m here to tell you, that dream might not work out the way you hope…

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