Style Guides Are The New Photoshop (Smashing Conference 2012)

4,511 views
4,204 views

Published on

This talk was first presented at Smashing Conference (http://smashingconf.com/).

Use of image editors for creating web design mockups has worked until now, but responsive design is forcing us to find alternatives, as we can't simply create more mockups as we design for more screens. Have no fear, there is at least one method of replacing Photoshop for web design. Let's take a look at one of the most important aspects of this method: the creation of clear, semi-automated, self-updating style guides.

Published in: Design

Style Guides Are The New Photoshop (Smashing Conference 2012)

  1. 1. STYLE GUIDES ARE THE NEW PHOTOSHOP STEPHEN HAY @ SMASHINGCONF 2012
  2. 2. DESIGNING IN THE BROWSER Demonstrating our designs to clients as XHTML/CSS pages rather than as static Photoshop or Fireworks has streamlined our workflow and helped us to set and manage a client’s expectations better than ever before. Andy Clarke, “Time to stop showing clients static design visuals” (2008)
  3. 3. WALLS COME TUMBLING DOWN (2009) Coming up with new and better workflows Designing in the browser Learning to live with constraints Designing systems, rather than sites
  4. 4. PHOTOSHOP IS IMPRACTICAL FOR RESPONSIVE DESIGN MOCKUPS
  5. 5. PROBLEMS WITH “PHOTOSHOP” COMPS Design changes are time-consuming Too much manual work The image editor is a dependency Responsive design implies multiple and flexible layouts
  6. 6. REALITY (Screenshots by Adobe Shadow)
  7. 7. WEB TECH IS VERY PRACTICAL FOR RESPONSIVE DESIGN MOCKUPS
  8. 8. WEB-BASED COMPS: THE GOOD Doesn’t need to take much longer than Photoshop Automate trivial tasks Realistic presentation / real-life rendering State changes are easily visualized Free and open: everyone has a browser & editor No negative surprises for the client Possible prep for development They can be responsive
  9. 9. WE NEED TWO THINGS TO REPLACE PHOTOSHOP FOR COMPS
  10. 10. 1. Static Web-based Comps2. Style Guides
  11. 11. STYLE GUIDES
  12. 12. STYLE GUIDES: THE GOOD No measuring State and breakpoint changes can be included Useful for future designers, devs & others Design consistency and maintainability
  13. 13. STYLE GUIDES IN THE WILD Apple Identity Guidelines
  14. 14. STYLE GUIDES IN THE WILD BBC GEL
  15. 15. ANNA DEBENHAM’S COLLECTION STYLE GUIDES, PATTERN LIBRARIES & TOOLS TO CREATE THEMhttp://gim.ie/fZyK
  16. 16. MY WEB STYLE GUIDE WISHLIST
  17. 17. Free-form writable
  18. 18. Taking screenshots should be automated
  19. 19. Update code snippets automatically when mockup code changes
  20. 20. Update screenshots automatically when something changes
  21. 21. Elements/modules should not have to be physically split into separate files
  22. 22. Syntax highlighting for code
  23. 23. AM I TOO DEMANDING? Free-form writable Automated screenshot-taking Update code snippets automatically Update screenshots automatically No separate files for code snippets Syntax highlighting
  24. 24. I COULD NOT FIND A SINGLE TOOL TO DO THIS
  25. 25. Free-form writing DEXY + PANDOC (OR MARKDOWN) FILTER http://www.dexy.it/
  26. 26. Taking screenshots PHANTOM.JS + CASPER.JS http://casperjs.org/http://phantomjs.org/
  27. 27. Code & screenshot updating JINJA TEMPLATES + DEXY’S IDIOPIDAE FILTER
  28. 28. Syntax highlighting DEXY’S PYGMENTS FILTER
  29. 29. THE COMMAND LINEhttp://www.flickr.com/photos/evdaimon/337754011/
  30. 30. hi.
  31. 31. How this works Web-based mockup Style guide content in Markdown Style guide screenshots taken, code snippets extracted HTML CSS SCREEN CODE
  32. 32. STEPS
  33. 33. 1 Create a web-based mockup Use HTML, CSS & when necessary, JavaScript Your goal is to represent the design in the browser Your goal is not to create production code Your CSS should be modular (it will end up in your style guide!)
  34. 34. SMACSS MAKE CSS MORE MODULAR WITH… A LUMBERJACK.
  35. 35. 2 Install Dexy & any dependencies If you’re a designer and can’t do it alone, ask a developer’s help. Before you ask for help, try going to the sites and following the instructions as best you can.
  36. 36. 2 Install PhantomJS & CasperJS If you’re a designer and can’t do it alone, ask a developer’s help. Before you ask for help, try going to the sites and following the instructions as best you can.
  37. 37. 3 Write your guide and use Jinja templates Use simple Markdown links to screenshots. Note the filenames you use.
  38. 38. 4 Script your screenshots with CasperJS Keep things easy by adding a new casper.then() for each screenshot. Code brevity is not the goal.
  39. 39. 5 Mark the CSS you want to export An export ends when another starts, or with @end.
  40. 40. 6 Run Dexy Wow, that command line stuff is hard.
  41. 41. DONE
  42. 42. Changes in design? Run dexy again. Well, okay. In some cases you might want to do dexy cleanup followed by dexy setup and then dexy.
  43. 43. This is not without a learning curve. But what is?
  44. 44. Choose what works for you.Hopefully something here will inspire you to find your own way. Experiment!
  45. 45. These are new times.The problems we have with responsive workflow should encourage us to examine and evaluate our processes and tools.
  46. 46. OPEN DEVICE LABShttp://klick-ass.com/awesomeness/avoid-the-tamagotchis-a-list-of-open-device-labs/
  47. 47. Have fun.Make great stuff.KEEP LEARNING.Thanks!@stephenhay Special thanks to Ana Nelson

×