5 Ultimate Graphic Design Mistakes

5 Ultimate Graphic Design Mistakes

UX Design

Things that graphic designers should avoid at all costs!

1. Using web graphics on printed material.

With many young designers coming from a pre-dominantly web design background the transfer over from web design to traditional design for print can bring with it a multitude of design sins. Images supplied at 72dpi and crunched down to load fast on a website are going to reproduce very badly in print you can get away with small thumbnails but blowing things up to any appreciable size is going to be pushing your luck. There are a number of online sites offering free or very cheap quality hi-resolution images which are a good source for suitable imagery.

2. Forgetting about or not allowing enough bleed.

A very common error is to send to print a document or flattened image that has no bleed at all. Generally speaking, you should allow at least 3mm around every cut off edge. Failing to do so will give the printers no leeway and will either crop off the side of the page or give you a white border. It is always a good idea when supplying image files to save layered Photoshop Tips and Tricks files then if things need extending or cropping you can do this on the background layer and hopefully cut down your work

3. Using obscure fonts and not embedding or outlining them for output.

We’ve all been guilty of this at some point and things are generally fine if you are going to be the only person accessing your artwork or documents. However, if someone else needs to amend the files or use your vector logo on one of there publications. Unless you package up the used fonts, they are not going to be able to open the files correctly and some software programs may replace any unknown fonts with a default. This is a particular problem when you need to dig out stuff that was created several years previously and you no longer have your old fonts installed.

4. Supplying print ready artwork using spot colors or RGB.

There are valid reasons for using spot colors in artwork, logos that need to reference particular Pantone colors for example. In general design work, however, the most print is sent through on 4 color presses CMYK with occasional 5th color for luminous or metallic color or for spot UV varnish. It is very common for lazy designers to just place RGB images into files and expect the vibrant colors seen on screen to reproduce in print.

5. Allowing design illiterate clients to lead you round the houses.

The customer is always right, goes the old adage. However, it is often said with gritted teeth and a sense of patience that recognizes that these morons will at some stage be handing over a fat check for your troubles. It is often a good idea when first submitting visuals to throw in a couple of stinkers to hopefully get them to appreciate the design you would like them to accept. There is the very real danger of course of them loving the piece of absolute arsewipe that you knocked up in five minutes to make them think you’ve been earning your money. Still, it’s a living.

Why does everyone think they are a graphic designer?

Why does everyone think they are a graphic designer?

UX Design


Anyone can be considered a graphic designer

It seems to be the norm these days that just about anyone can be considered a graphic designer to some degree or another. With so many programs being built right into digital camera software, greeting card programs and the standards that come with computer packages these days, it makes it really easy for people to get creative and experiment with their design skills. Many are at home designing and saving money by creating their own wedding invitations, holiday newsletters, calendars, advertisements and much more with borders, clip art, funky fonts and all kinds of themes and color schemes that can be achieved with just a click or two of the mouse.


Pictures can also be easily incorporated into designs of any media type, print or web, with one of the many software programs on the market today. But when it comes to pictures and images, a favorite among most graphic designers is definitely Photoshop. This program is manufactured by Adobe and has tons of amazing features and tools that can make any picture into a work of art with very little effort. It also enables you to touch up photos that might have been damaged or become worn over time, in addition to having the capability to add text and all kinds of cool effects to artistic projects. Adobe Photoshop does tend to be on the more expensive side, but if purchased in a bundled package, you’ll not only save money, but you’ll also get a few other really great design programs that Adobe also develops and sells right along with it – then you can really get crazy going to town with your artistic abilities!

Results will vary, of course, depending on an individual’s degree of experience, education in design and length of time working in this area, but even just a basic knowledge of a graphic design program can lead to some very imaginative results either on a personal or professional level.

When Is the Right Time to Redesign?

When Is the Right Time to Redesign?

UX Design


Are you thinking of a redesign?

If you run a website, chances are you often wonder whether it is the right time to do a total redesign of the layout of your website. Here are some points to consider:

Are you thinking of a redesign just for the sake of it? If you answered yes to that question, it is not yet the right time to do a redesign. Remember, a design serves a specific purpose. If you are not sure whether to do an overhaul of your site, keep in mind that your current design might have a specific purpose that you might not know about. You will lose that function if you do a redesign.

On the other hand, if your website has had the same website design since 1990, perhaps it is high time to do a redesign. The last thing you would ever want to happen to your site is when visitors leave your site without taking a look at your content just because the design is old-fashioned. If this is your case, here are some points to ponder before doing a redesign.

Redesigning your website

Redesigning your website is like performing plastic surgery on it. Your website loses its current identity (for the better or worse) and your regular visitors might not recognize your new design at first glance. You risk losing them just because they thought they landed on the wrong page. Hence, it is very important that you retain a characteristic feature from your old layout. Perhaps it is the logo of your site; perhaps it is the same text style for the title for your site.

To play it safe, put a poll on your site to let your visitors do the talking. If they think it is necessary for the website to have a fresh look, give it to them!

Do Search Engines Care About Valid HTML?

Learn HTML, Or Use A WYSIWYG Editor



Learn the basics of HTML

When I first started designing web pages back in 1998,  it was necessary for me to learn the HTML markup language. At that particular time, there were somewhat you see is what you get editors, but almost everyone that design web pages used raw HTML and understood how it worked. Now, seven or eight years later, we find that be the market is flooded with editors such as Dreamweaver that allow anybody to design web pages as easily as they can create a Microsoft Word document.

Whenever I take someone under my wing, and start teaching them about Internet marketing, and designing web pages, the first thing that I tell them is that they should learn the basics of HTML. While I recommend that they use Dreamweaver for most of their web page designs, it’s always helpful to be able to go into the code view and understand what they are looking at. It also helps whenever viewing the source code of other people’s web pages, to see how they did one thing or another with their code. This would be nearly impossible if you did not understand at least the basics of HTML.

Clean HTML code

Another benefit of knowing HTML is that you can go in and clean up your code. After you design a page in a program like Dreamweaver. A lot of times, there is weird formatting that goes on behind the scenes in it what you see is what you get an editor. It makes it difficult, sometimes even for those of us that know HTML to go into the document, and know where we are at inside the code. However, if you understand HTML, it’s easier to go in, make your code neater and more manageable, and then save it in that format so that it’s easier to go in and edit in the code view in the future.

While there’s no doubt that using programs such as Dreamweaver can make beautiful web pages that function fully without even going into messing with the HTML at all, I still think that it’s a good practice to understand the basics of the HTML markup language and to make sure that you use it on a regular basis so that you keep this skill. Not only does it help you when you’re in a code pinch, but he keeps you from being what I like to call a lazy web designer.

Learn the Super Easy HTML Basics

HTML Basics


Learn HTML

Are you feeling a bit lost when someone mentions those four letters, “HTML”? Well, it is actually very easy to learn and understand. We will cover how to set up a simple page, how to format text, insert images, and insert links. Let’s start by explaining what it is exactly.

When you visit a page, you see columns, images, links and different colors. This has all been written by someone (or someone used a program to write it). And it is written in HTML. All web pages are sent to your browser (such as “Internet Explorer” or “Firefox”) as HTML.

HTML is the easiest “computer language” to learn. Now, when you write a formal letter to someone, there are things you add at the start and end aren’t there (such as at the start their address, the date, and at the end your name and signature). Between these items, you write the body of the letter. Well, in some ways, the basics of HTML is very similar.

Let me just give you an example of a simple page. This would display the words “Welcome” in the browser (the numbers in bold are not part of the code – they are just line numbers so we know what we are talking about later on).

1]     <html>
2]        <head>
3]            <title>Site Title</title>
4]        </head>
6]        <body>
7]            Welcome
8]        </body>
9]    </html>

All tags start and end. A start tag looks like <xxx> and and ending tag for it would look like </xxx>. There are many tags – <u>…</u> for underline, <b>…</b> for bold etc.

If we go back to the letter example, you normally write your address, the date, their address etc at the top. Well, this is what the first four lines are like. The first line, <html> (note, in HTML, it doesn’t normally matter if it is upper or lower case. In some technologies such as XHTML it does, but for now it doesn’t matter) just declares that between that HTML “tag” as it is known, and the ending HTML tag on line 9 (notice the backslash, indicating it has ended) it has HTML within it.

The head contains information that isn’t directly displayed by your browser. The <title> tag contains the title of the page, which is shown at the top of your browser. Other things such as keywords go into your head tag, but that’s a bit more advanced.

You should put all your content on the <body> tag that you want the user to see inside the main part of their browser.

HTML links

A link is something that lets you click on it, and it will request a new page. You use the anchor tag for this:

<a href=”http://www.example.com”>CLICK HERE </a>

Do you see how that would work? It would display the words “CLICK HERE”, and that links to http://www.techneek.co.uk. This tag, the <a … >  tag has an example of an attribute to it – the href.

Almost all attributes have a =” “. It is basically like saying, I have an anchor tag. I want to make it link to something. To tell it to link to something, you need to put href=”your link”. Remember when ending this tag (</a>), you don’t need to put in the href. It is always just </a>.

HTML Bold, Italic, Underline

These are really simple – you probably already know them. <b> bold text </b> for bold, <u> underline </u> or <i> italic </i>

<b>Spaces in HTML</b>
Spaces to some extent don't matter. I could write this line:
<a href=”http://www.example.com”>example.com</a>
<a href=”http://www.example.com”>
example link

In HTML, any multiplies of a space – ‘ ‘ just show up as one. To display more than one you need to type &nbsp;.

HTML Images

Images are really simple. It is just <img src=”yourimagelink”>. You don’t even need an ending tag (no img> tag!). If you want to specify the height/width, use height=”120” width=”400”;
<img src=”yourimagelink.jpg” height=”99” width=”89”>

In case the image can’t be loaded for your user, you should give an alternative text. This is also good for people who find it hard to see on the screen. To do this, add alt=”a description of your image”. I would personally recommend no more than 6 words.

<img src=”youimagelink.jpg” width=”200” height=”100” alt=”View of a beach”>

It is recommended that the only image types you use are Gifs (.gif), Jpegs (.jpg), or Portable Network Graphic (.png). Try and keep the file sizes down, some users are at very slow speeds.

So there you are, you should be able to make a page now. Open up notepad, paste this template in:

<title>Your first webpage</title>
</head> <body> ... Your content goes here, such as <a href="”http://www.example.com">Example</a>! ... </body> </html>

And replace the “…” bits with your content. Save it as a .htm or .html file (it makes no difference what you choose) and open it in your browser.

Here is an example simple web page using everything we have covered so far:

</head> <body> <b><i>Hello!</i>Welcome to <u>my</u> page! Click on the image to go to http://www.example.com</b> <a href=””http://www.example.com”> <img src=”exampleimage.jpg” alt=”Example image” height=”400” width=”400”> </a> </body> </html>

Now you are ready to go further. I recommend that you search for things on your favorite search engine, such as:

  • paragraph HTML tag
  • hr HTML tag
  • div HTML tag
  • basic CSS tutorial
  • uploading webpage or website tutorial server

Have fun!

PHP And MySQL Programming Security

PHP And MySQL Programming Security


PHP & MySQL development

Choosing PHP and MySQL as a programming language for a website is not enough. With open source coding being one of the inherent properties of PHP & MySQL development, securing your codes becomes essential. So when one allows the users to upload files on the website, then security is definitely at stake.

PHP Programming Protection

While it is not entirely possible to protect your site, yet there are few precautions that you can incorporate for better protection of PHP programming. Some of these are:

You should check the referrer, for being sure that the information sent is from your website and not an outside source. Since there are maximum chances of the information is fake.

Restriction of the type of extension files being uploaded on the website is yet another method of security check. Renaming files is another way in which the program can be secured. This procedure involves the checking of double-barrel extensions like yourfile.php.gif.

Changing the permission command for the upload folder so that files within it are not executable. All the alterations created by the user should be allowed only when they ‘Login’ into the database. On the other hand, the owner of the site should always keep a close watch on all files being uploaded and then make them live.

MySQL Programming Security

Another aspect in PHP and MySQL web development is the protection of the MySQL libraries. Therefore, the most important aspect involved in protecting the MySQL program is the security of the entire server host.

Securing MySQL is essential for the smooth running of the website. This is based on Access Control Lists and SSL-encrypted connections, for protecting the PHP & MySQL web development program from random users visiting the website.

Some of the vital things to be considered for online site protection are:

  • Accessing of the MySQL database should not be allowed for any and everyone.
  • Privileges to the users should always be accompanied with some restriction. If one can easily connect to the server without any ‘login’ then the security level code of the MySQL server should be rechecked.
  • The MySQL database should be void of plain-text passwords. Use programs like MD5 (), SHA1(), or some hashing function for complete protection.
  • Do not choose passwords from dictionaries, since they can be hacked easily. Use programs that break the passwords.

Therefore, the successful development of a website through PHP and MySQL web development is complete only when the site owner consults a professional programmer. They expertise in the optimization of the MySQL hosting database. This program is dynamic in nature and is an effective tool in the creation of browser-based applications.

Choosing the Perfect Agency for PHP And MySQL

Choosing the Perfect Agency for PHP And MySQL



PHP & MySQL development

Have you decided on a website that will cater to the interests of the targeted visitors? Well, you can use the PHP & MySQL development programming language. By using the PHP & MySQL development programs you can create dynamic database management system that uses the open source type of language.  There are so many utilities of the programming language that you can rely on experts, to make the right decision.

Make the Right Choice

There are in-numerous organizations that render PHP and MySQL web development services. But the final choice has to be made by you. Don’t get perplexed by the number of companies, claiming to be the best in the business. Consult for expert assistance before making the final choice.

There are various types of organizations, from big web designing firms to small freelancing companies. Both these types of organizations have their own advantages and disadvantages. It is for you to decide, which organization shall fulfill your criteria and requirement.

Does Company Infrastructure Matter?

The big web hosting companies have the large infrastructure and huge expertise manpower. Hence these companies usually charge a heavy amount for their services rendered. The main focus of the big web hosting organizations is to highlight the process and not delivering the final product. At times you might find your project not panning out as you desired because of the communication problems.

While small companies offering freelancing services, charge a lot less for PHP & MySQL web development than the big size organizations, they lack manpower and expertise. If you want to achieve something out of the ordinary then you might get frustrated, as people involved in the project might not have the vast expertise and knowledge that experts from big organizations usually have. An important benefit of working with the small firms is that you have the scope of personal interaction with the designer.

While making a selection of the organization, you need to access the magnitude of your work and time within which you want to finish the project. The small firms have limited resources, and also they might be overloaded with work. It may also happen that you might be required to wait. That is why if you are looking for quick completion of a large sized project than you can definitely opt for large organizations.

Making the best choice for PHP & MySQL development programs will make your website popular and make your work easy too.

How did PHP Become Popular?

How did PHP become Popular?


History of PHP

PHP (it originally was an abbreviation of for Personal Home Page) was first written by Rasmus Lerdorf. These were Perl scripts to track users of his Web pages. On communication and suggestions from other people he rewrote it as a scripting language and added support for forms. As its popularity grew, a core group of developers created an API for it and turned it into PHP3. Presently we have version 5. (PHP5) and its growth is likely to continue.

Plus Points of PHP

PHP will run on all platform, including most UNIX, Windows(95/98/NT/2000) and Macs. As this uses the same code base, all scripts will run identically on all the platforms.
PHP is similar to C. So anyone who has experience with a C-style language will easily learn PHP. In C-style languages, we can also include Javascript and Java.

PHP is extendible. This allows programmers two ways of extending PHP to do some special processing, either by writing an extension module and compiling it into the executable or by creating an executable that can be loaded using PHP’s dynamic loading mechanism.

PHP currently will load into Apache, IIS, AOLServer, Roxen, and THTTPD. Alternatively, it can be run as a CGI module. Lots of database interfaces. PHP currently will work with MySQL, MS SQL, Oracle, Informix, PostgreSQL and many others. These are binary level interfaces, and ODBC is also provided for those situations where the database is not supported.

If a PHP user wants to interface to the particular library, then it is easy to write an interface for it, and many have done so and contributed to the main PHP source repository. So you can find modules for graphics routines, PDF files, Flash movies, Cybercash, calendars, XML, IMAP, POP and a host of others. If the library you need is not supported, you can either write one yourself or employ your favorite programmer to do it.

The PHP Extension and Add-on Repository. Similar to the CPAN network for Perl, although still in its infancy, the idea of PEAR is to provide a set of PHP scripts that would be installed by default with the PHP installation Fast.

PHP has normally used an Apache module and this makes it very fast. It is entirely written in C and is quite small, so loads and executes quickly with small memory footprint. PHP is Open Source. Therefore programmers are not dependent on a particular manufacturer to fix things that don’t work.

What are the main disadvantages of PHP

A scripting language has advantages and disadvantages. PHP also has some disadvantages. Some are direct disadvantages and some are indirect regarding functionality. PHP’s main drawback is Error Handling. PHP has a very poor ability in this regard, but even this disadvantage can be overcome using a feasible advantage solution.

Difference between Blogger and WordPress

Difference between Blogger and WordPress


Differences between Blogger and WordPress

The two main hosted blog types, are Blogger and WordPress – you’ll find that whenever a discussion about where its best to host your blog if you’re not hosting it yourself, that these two are rated the highest.

So which of the two services is better? Ultimately, both services will offer you a strong and solid base to blog from, but there are a couple of distinct differences between Blogger and WordPress.


WordPress hosted services are not designed to be used for commercial purposes – nevertheless, most people do. You get a choice of themes (and without paying, you can’t design your own theme) and a choice of plugins. You can ‘map’ your domain to the site, for a fee, giving you the appearance of hosting it yourself.

WordPress hosted (at http://wordpress.com) is almost identical to hosting it yourself, other than the obvious ‘bonus’ of not actually needing to look after your install. But its disadvantages include being at the mercy of a third party site and needing to pay for additional ‘services’. These still cost less than buying hosting and setting the blog up yourself.


Blogger is owned by Google and is designed around ease of use. You can ‘FTP’ your blog onto your own site or host at a domain (yourblogname.blogspot.com) of your choice. Blogger doesn’t use plugins but does let you use your own theme, within certain limits.

A huge community has been built around Blogger, but unlike WordPress.com they allow commercial based blogs as well as non-commercial, which means they are more prone to spam.

In conclusion. If you really can’t host your own blog at your own site, play with both WordPress and Blogger, because ultimately, the main difference will be between which one your more comfortable with. And that’s the one you should use.

Welcome To The World Of CSS Web Design

Welcome To The World Of CSS Web Design


Improved with the help of CSS

Although CSS was first introduced in the mid-1990s, it did not become a mainstream tool for web designers and masters until more recent years. This is unfortunate because there are millions of poorly designed websites cluttering the internet that could be easily improved with the help of CSS.

So what exactly is CSS?

CSS is an acronym that stands for Cascading Style Sheets. The term Cascading Style Sheets implies two things. First off, the style sheets are cascading. This means that multiple style sheets can be used for a single web page. Additionally, the term “cascading” also refers to the way a style is determined in the event that more than one rule matches a single element. The second thing that is implied by the name Cascading Style Sheets is that the purpose of CSS is to style web pages. Whereas the purpose of HTML (or XHTML) is to define the structure of a web page, the purpose of CSS is to define the presentation.

Different browsers

The reason that so many web pages have broken layouts in different browsers is that they try to use HTML to control the structure and presentation of the page. The most common abuse of HTML is attempting to use tables as a presentation method. Although you may be able to achieve the look you want in a single browser, your web page will look broken and distorted in many other browsers. The only time that tables should be used is to hold a set of data (such as the results of a scientific experiment). If you do have a legitimate use for tables on your web page, you can even use CSS to style your table and make it more attractive.


By taking the time to learn CSS, you will be able to create a web page that looks much more consistent across a variety of browsers.