My 20 favorites free design books

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I love reading, more when it is about design. I’ve found some really useful guides, handbooks, and books that I think every designer should read.

  1. The Design Funnel
  2. Breaking the Time Barrier
  3. Design’s Iron Fist
  4. The Freelancer Bible
  5. Pixel Perfect Precision
  6. The Actionable Guide to Starting your Design System
  7. Time Management for Creative People
  8. Graphic Design for on-Profit Organizations
  9. Logo Design
  10. The guide to Mockups
  11. The guide to Prototype
  12. The Pocketbook
  13. Typo Tips
  14. UX design for Startups
  15. Color theory in UI Design
  16. Flat Design and Colors
  17. The 23-Point UX Design hecklist
  18. The Building Blocks of Visual Hierarchy
  19. The guide to Wireframing
  20. Building a Brand is like Building a House

 

Tools that I use to work nowadays

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Coding

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Image

 
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General

How I keep my creativity top notch

Years ago I wrote a letter to a friend. He was concerned about his own level of creativity. As if somehow you could measure it. I share with him my thoughts about creativity and how I do to keep my own creativity active every day.

Creativity is not necessarily innate, but just living, playing and observing you are already using your creativity. People train their creativity day by day to be able to respond and solve problems in a creative way. You can train it as well if you put yourself in a situation similar to a life dilemma giving you the context to work with and solve this obstacle like a winner.

But how you can put yourself in a real life problem simulation to train your creativity?

Well here is how I do it.

 

solve

1. Solve problems

I think of what’s bothering me in my life, any matter will work. From organizing your kitchen to a problem in your job. After selected one, I think of how to change or solve it. I create an imaginary situation where this problem is the middle point. If you don’t feel very imaginative you can draw it or write it down. Then imagine the possible solutions applied.

For example, imagine that I want to organize my shoes (even when I have a few, why not?) My problem here is that my shoes look messy, but what possibilities I have to re arrange it if I don’t have much available space. Well, let’s think of what people do when they have to fit lots of things in a small area. They create buildings!

This applied to my little problem would grow high, so I put a couple of boxes together making a shelve, then I made labels of what’s inside of each box. This thinking can be tested and practices to almost any situation.

Problems are basically motivations. When you are aware of what’s bothering you, what’s making your life more complicated than it should be. You can change it and just try will activate your creativity.

 

learn

2. Learning anything

I love learning because I believe that learning anything will open the possibilities to the next learning and the next. Every time that you learn something you are cultivating your creativity, the more variety of knowledge the more creative solutions will come to your mind when trying to come up with a solution.

 

observe

3. Observe and question

I feel a freak sometimes staring at people but is how I realize what I’m doing right or wrong. Stopping your daily routine and observe what are you doing in your life will open your mind to new thoughts. People follow their own pattern of actions and behavior day by day without questions. My advice is to observe and ask questions.

 

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Act for creativity

  • Ask questions about everything
  • Make a to-do list of different topics
  • Carry on a notebook, and use it!
  • Write a short history about something that you saw
  • Read a random topic
  • Listen to new music
  • Help everyone
  • Travel somewhere new
  • Take risks
  • Walk a lot
  • Have lots of fun!

 

Icons from The Noun Project