It’s not just web design that should inspire us to create great
You can also be inspired by almost anything in the world around
You never know when something will strike that creative spark
in you, and I am constantly finding that some of the most
common things will get me thinking about a project in a new
or different way. Here are 10 of my favorite sources of design
inspiration outside of the web.
One of the best places to think about design is outside. Look at all the
great shapes and color combinations found in nature. Personally, I
love flowers for color palette inspiration.
This fall pansies will be the basis for new project palettes, with flowers
that combine great pops of bright (and contrasting) color.
While many designers will agree that listening to a few tunes are a great
way to get the design juices flowing, there are other benefits to music
as well. Think of the mixed range of emotions you can feel when
listening to different styles of music. Tune in to a vibe that matches the
tone of your project for a little added inspiration. Let your mind float
while listening and use some of the visuals that your mind creates
during a song as the basis for a project outline.
Design really is just another form of art or creative expression and
looking at other art forms can really help you get a project moving. But
don’t stick to the obvious idea of just looking at paintings. Sculpture
can be a fantastic source of inspiration. Look closely at shapes and
the way objects connect and interact with each other to brainstorm
new ways of planning your site.
While photography can be a somewhat obvious source of inspiration for
websites, it’s not used as commonly as you might expect.
If you have a great image that works for a project, don’t just be inspired
by it. Use it. Go big with the design and focus on the great image. On
the flip side, if you don’t have any images, look to the world of
photography for ideas. Places like National Geographic, Jill Greenberg
and Levon Biss are always great to turn to when you are feeling a
touch of designer’s block. (And these sites are designed well around
Runways, fashion shows and magazines are a wonderful place to look at
emerging trends from color to scale to texture. Then you can apply
some of those same concepts to web design.
While the scale a fashion designer uses for a show can help you think
about building things in a big (or small) way, color choices and
textures are some of the best trendy things to look at. (Just think of the
whole Chevron craze happening now.) Many of the background
textures that we see on websites also started as fabrics or clothing
The one thing to be aware of when it comes to using fashion for
inspiration is that sometimes it takes web designers a little while to
catch up with high-fashion trends. But it can be a great way to get
ahead of the curve and start thinking about what might happen next.
While there are plenty of naysayers out there that absolutely hate all the
Instagram photos of meals, these simple images can be inspiring.
The color and shape combinations can be pretty awesome. For some
reason, sushi photos really make me think. (Maybe it’s the the color
and round objects.) Looking at food can help you create a website that
is food related … or something totally different.
Sources for my presentation:
Sources for my presentation: