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Becoming A Professional Graphic Designer: Tips & Tricks

Graphic design is a young form of art with rising popularity. Young Graphic Designer aspirants are joining this field almost every day. For designing, you only need to make a one-time investment into a tablet or a laptop. A Graphic Designer needs to learn the basics of graphic designing software, and with a little practice and a dash of creativity, you will be able to master professional designing skills in no time!


There has been a massive demand for graphic designers, especially after the worldwide pandemic COVID-19 rendered human contact almost impossible. Packaging industries, advertisement industries have resorted to digital illustration for advertisement and other related tasks.


Since there is a vast availability of jobs, let’s get started with improving your designing skills and how to transform yourself from an amateur to a professional!


Don’t Be Discouraged with Initial Hurdles


One of the major things to keep in mind is not to feel discouraged or inferior if you are not an art practitioner. You don’t need an art college degree or even a designing degree to excel in graphic design. Neither do you require any formal training or any degree for this task.


You need to practice with the software applications and look up the designs of professionals and experts for inspiring ideas and input into creating your designs!

There are multiple designing software that you can use create your designs


Choosing a Color Palette is Important for Graphic Designer


Some of the best designs make use of fantastic color palettes comprising unique and elegant shades. You can look up for different shades and textures to incorporate into your creations too. However, it is advisable to remain careful that your color depicts emotions. Therefore, incorporate them wisely.


Moreover, graphic design colors do not have a quality loss, not until they are printed. Therefore, the color you see on the palette will appear in the same way on your design, unless you use a different shade.


For logo designs, it is advisable for a Graphic Designer to use a maximum of two to three colors. When you receive requests for web page designs, it is recommendable to incorporate the same colors as their company logo.


You might often get requests for enhancing colors or effects in different images meant for social media ads or posts. It is advisable to listen to your client’s requirements before you start editing or working in those cases. Since social media pages are essential for creating a brand reputation, your clients might have special needs. Pay attention to those.


Don’t Overdo Your Fonts!


It might be a little overwhelming to see different fonts and to select from there. However, it is advisable not to utilize more than two font styles in a particular design.


Using multiple font styles is amateurish for a Graphic Designer, and you probably want to look like a professional. Therefore, it is recommendable to overcome the initial excitement as soon as you can.


There are several ways to make use of typography. You can use 3D effects as well to be more attractive and stylish. While designing for logos, you can incorporate a single but unique writing style, up to and including conjoining of alphabets.


In webpages or blogs, it is preferable to limit yourself to two types of font: one for headings and the other for the main body. Moreover, it is recommendable for a Graphic Designer to use only legible writing styles while writing blogs, articles, or web pages. The chances are that viewers will be reading the content, so you need to be artistic yet legible.

using appropriate fonts can help in elevating the design quality.


It’s a Good Idea to Leave Space


Sometimes, it is a good idea to leave gaps or room in your design. Not every area has to be shaded or written into them. Leaving a white space or a blank can go a long way to make your designs more unique and stand out among the rest.

Often, a white space can aid you in creating unique design structures.

A Graphic Designer Need Ideas


Sometimes it is a wise idea to take concepts from other designs from professionals or experts. You can easily find different styles or structures on the internet from which you can borrow ideas or techniques.


However, do not entirely crib from the design you are using as a reference. It is recommendable to consult two to three sources while using references for your work!


Graphical design is used for a variety of purposes by companies. It could be for advertisements, packaging, promoting new businesses, creating book covers, or designing pamphlets. The main issue is to discuss the requirements of your clients beforehand before fixing on a price.


In case you are providing unlimited designing services, please make sure that your clients know all the terms and conditions beforehand. When designing commercially, it is advisable not to give freebies for “friends” or “friends of friends.” To expand your business, you need to act professionally.
It is worthwhile to check out other successful graphic design companies if you are unsure about starting your business. Draftss is a company well known for providing quality designs to their clients for unlimited packages. You may consult their webpages or blogs to get an idea about how to improve your designs or gain more customers.


Wish you a happy learning and an incredible journey in your graphic designing career!

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Getting Started With Machine Learning 101

With the development of artificial intelligence or AI, it has given rise to some branches such as General AI and narrow AI. General AI has a relatively holistic approach and does not focus on any particular domain. Narrow AI deals with those tasks that are specified in a particular domain, works such as machine translation of language.

Narrow AI has shown a lot of recent developments lately especially in the field of algorithm creation which has promoted the machine learning to a great extent.

What is machine learning?

Just as algorithms are written or coded by programmers, similarly this can be done by the computer itself by learning from previous instructions or from data provided previously. This saves a lot of time of the programmer who now no longer have to feed the machine with instructions at every step! In fact, it is the algorithm that learns and develops based on the needs of the users.

The algorithm has a database that works like the memory which can remember our recall previous data.

So how does a machine or algorithm learn from previous data? There are certain methods:

Types of machine learning

There are several ways through which machine learning takes place

  • Learning with supervision: this is done when the programmer feeds the algorithm with labelled data and codify the output desired. To take an example, if a programmer uploads pictures of buildings with the label “building” to the algorithm’s memory, it can, later on, identify the same image.
  • Without supervision: in this case, the data fed to the algorithm is not pre-labelled. The algorithm identifies similar patterns and learns by itself. For example, when you shop at online stores, you often see recommendations of “frequently bought together”. This data is something not directly labelled and provided. It is learned by previous data.
  • Acts of reinforcement: sometimes, algorithms are given positive or negative feedback through which data is provided to them regarding what is desirable and what is not. Autopilot installed in cars, for instance, are rewarded if they keep to the road while driving.

How does machine learning impact graphic design industry?

Graphic design denotes a sense of creativity or freedom of expression. So, is it really possible for an algorithm to replace that heightened sense of perception of the human mind?

At the current stage of development, it is not yet possible for a coded algorithm to develop designs or replace human creativity altogether. However, it has the ability to suggest possible patterns or to guide the users such that speed and efficiency are relatively heightened. There is also an added advantage of the vast knowledge stored in the database of the algorithm, which would provide useful suggestions and tips to the designer while working.

Startups in the graphic designing industry can benefit a lot through these algorithms helping them to identify plagiarism or to get suggestions while providing design services.

The combined work of AI and designers have often created amazing and unique finished products.

It is true that the demand for graphic design has escalated a lot during the past few years. It is due to the growth hacks bring used by various companies for their startup growth. Having better designs on the webpage or blogs along with quality content adds to the traffic in these webpages which ultimately benefits the entrepreneur!

At present, machine learning has benefited the content industry a great deal. In case you are an entrepreneur, don’t worry as your design quality won’t be compromised just because an algorithm helped out the designer to create something unique! In fact, it will help them to suit your needs better.

For some amazing graphic design price packaging, you may consult Draftss. This company has a team of competent designers that provide quality design services.

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Designing With Environmental Sustainability

One thing the current global pandemic has proven to the world is that we need to take better care of our environment to ensure lasting benefits.


While it becomes essential to use different machines, it is recommendable to consider new and improved methods that do not compromise the quality of the environment around you. We should all contribute whatever we can, even if it something trivial. Do you know how many trees are cut down for paper creation? Yet the paper is used for a variety of purposes. Although some of the uses are unavoidable, we should try to limit our applications as much as possible.


Books already have a famous digital counterpart known as the e-book! It is freely downloadable in some cases and has proven its benefits in terms of movability and transferability. However, what about art and design? What about the thousands of advertisements that takes up newspapers and posters? Minimization of paper use is required.


So what is the next best alternative? How to go digital or go green in the designing sector? The answer lies in Graphic design!

Graphical designs are not a compromise on art

No doubt, artists need a lot of practice and patience to reach their mastery. However, it is not a reason to think that digital artists do not require any effort!


Digital illustrations need learning and understanding of different artistic concepts and techniques. While it is true that AI has benefited a lot of new artists to learn and get ideas, but even then, incorporating new insights and understanding of what works best has to come from the artists themselves!

It requires time and effort for both, paper designs and graphical designs.


Changes in the advertising firms

Most of the companies are opting for digital advertisement nowadays. This shift in preference has many reasons. Let’s take a look at them one by one:


• Social media has become something prevalent and accessible. Even high school students can see digital advertisements more than they would see in a newspaper. Going for digital ad campaigns would maximize your outreach!
• Since the

global pandemic COVID-19 has endangered human physical contact in any form, it is advisable to use digital illustration instead of actors playing out in advertisements.


• Marketing through emails is also trending nowadays. Willing subscribers often receive newsletters and other promotional content in their emails, which helps them stay connected with particular companies. This technique has proven to be more effective than placards!


• Startups in home decor or similar businesses find it easier to advertise through digital content. It allows them to use different photos and videos of their products to appeal to their target audience.

Digital marketing is what most of the companies are opting for.

Commercial art

Digital paintings have become an excellent medium for creative artists and comic writers worldwide. Different art software allows various shades and textures that are quite difficult to afford for struggling artists.
Digital art and illustration have become an excellent way of exploring talents and creating different works involving art. Artists are getting jobs, and collaborative project offers like never before!

Comic artists and commercial artists make use of graphical design software.

Conservation of natural resources should be a priority for most people, yet this is where we lack at the moment. Using digital medium as a substitute for paper canvases may not bring about much change in the damage already made, but it is bound to cause some changes and create awareness.

In case you require unlimited graphical designing services at reasonable prices, or for design consultancy, feel free to contact Draftss for some fantastic graphic design packages that you will definitely want to check out!

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Tracing the Evolution of Digital Art Through a Bird’s Eye View

A beginner’s guide to digital art 

Decades ago, people used print media to convey information, ideas, speech etc. Be it the graffiti that was put on walls. Or the print graphics in the newspapers, the media used was largely paper. Yet as the printing press gained momentum when Gutenberg invented it, literacy expanded. 

Even later than that invention, a major watershed event was the development of digital art. Now, what does that mean? Basically, digital art is the graphic form that developed with the emergence of personal computers. Put in simple words, digital art is the contemporary art that uses methods of mass production and digital media. 

Digital art has completely revolutionalised modern Industry. It has a lot of advantages over conventional print art or written Graffiti. 

Some of these are listed below: 

  • Digital Art is very cost-effective as one can hire any designer with a minimum investment who provides unlimited graphic design services. 
  • Digital art is versatile as it can be created through any electronic device easily.
  • Digital art is more long-lasting as it stays for a longer time in the computer and other devices. 

 

The Evolution of Digital Art from ages

The digital art that we have today is entirely different from the pioneering stage one. With the improvements in technology, art has flourished a lot and has improved its outlook too. If you compare the digital brochures and graphics of the present day with the 3 decades older ones, the visible difference will be found. Check out how digital art evolved through ages. 

 

  • The emergence of Digital Art 

Digital art slowly emerged in the late 1940s with the introduction of personal computers. The onset of production of PCs meant that people needed the digital form of art which they made on paper. This, as it’s said that Necessity is the mother of all Inventions, digital art came into being. 

However the first true computer, the Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer, or the ENIAC, was created for military purposes, came into being around 1940s.

 

  • The 1950s and 1960s

As soon as the personal computers came in markets, the users and artists began exploring the possibilities of art from computers. This was done owing to a variety of reasons. The first being that the basic feature that any user explores in a new device is any graphic or visual content. Also, some users were in urgent need of learning ways to present data in digital form. They also experimented with related technologies of art in the late 1950s and early 1960s.

 

  • 1965

And then further experimenting was done in this area. Early experiments with computer art came around 1965. German artist Frieder Nake who was also a mathematician created a computer algorithm. An algorithm is a programmed list of instructions that tells a computer what to do. This algorithm enabled the machine to draw a series of shapes to make artwork. What this means is the computer created digital artwork through the instructions that were there in the algorithm.

The resulting computer-generated drawings were some of the earliest examples of art done on a computer.

  • 1967

Wondering who created the first digital artwork? Interestingly, one of the first truly digital works of art was created in 1967. It was made by two Americans Kenneth Knowlton and Leon Harmon. There’s an intriguing anecdote to how they made it. They actually took a photograph of a nude woman and changed it into a picture composed of computer pixels, titled Computer Nude. (A pixel is one small element of an image; when many pixels are combined, they can create a larger, complete image.) The nude that the 2 Americans created was one of the first digital artworks.

 

  • The late 1960s

And after this development, around the late 1960s, several museums held exhibits exploring art using computers. That was an exotic way to highlight the newness that had entered the digital scene. Around the same time, several artists began exploring digital technology in multimedia art too using computers, television, video, and other things.

 

  • In the second half of the 1960s, preferably around 1969,  artist Allan Kaprow created artwork by the name of Hello. He was known for art events called Happenings, in which the art was a series of activities or actions with audience participation. He created Hello as a juxtaposition to the Boston TV station. 

 

  • The 1980s

 

You will be surprised to know that the term ” Digital art” only appeared around the early 1980s. This happened when the computer engineers created a paint program which became known as AARON. It was a robotic machine designed to make large drawings on sheets of paper placed on the floor.

 

 

  • The 1990s

Around the time of 1990s, the internet became all the more widespread. This made digital art more accessible to artists and viewers. Artists began to explore how they could use the internet to create their works of art. With the improvement in digital technology, artists could also manipulate the images they had filmed with a video camera for the first time.

 

And in the 2000s, digital art is everywhere. 

 Presently, there’s been a radical decline in the cost of digital art software. This is owing to the exponential growth of chip power and bandwidth. Thus, digital art has been made very cost-effective as we discussed before. A lot of coming up artists and bloggers are exploring this realm of art!!!

 

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Unravelling the dynamics of trends in the Content Industry

 

As time has progressed, everything seems taking a new trajectory of its own. From designing to articulating. And from pictures to videos. It’s all fresh and dawn! 

The same holds true whenever we refer to the content being created by any industry ( web, print etc.). Earlier when customers used to avail services from the company, it was all common and same for everyone. Moreover, there was hardly any creativity colour added to the product. How can you imagine the present age customers to consume “sameness”? Exoticism is today the key to the content industry. Besides that, a lot is happening in terms of playing with Content, experimenting with new concepts and coming up with out-of-box ideas.  Do you wish to know in detail about the changing trends in the Content industry? If you want to, then read these 5 amazing trends being followed by present content creators! 

And get hold of the ones you like the most!  

Best 5 changing trends in Content industry

 

  • Providing customized and user-friendly content

 

tips and tricks for designers for new design trends of 2020

Your customers want what they like, they don’t want what you like!”

 This is the core mantra and guiding principle of today’s Content Industry. If you fail to please your customer, you lose the game. Creating content that is targeted to a particular user group has to be unique. For say you can’t make the same kind of logo/ graphic for a start-up than what you will do for a Multinational company. This varies from person to person and firm to firm. In a study, published in Demand Gen, there was a 20% rise in sales for those companies that delivered what their users wanted! 

So this is something that’s visible today. There are many graphic designing companies like Draftss, who ask their customer what they want in terms of design. Thus, personalized Content is the new fad! 

 

  • Less text and more visuals

One will realise the importance of this trend when one will see what Apple is actually doing. In one of the most famous advertisements of Apple, you will see its iPhone with minimal text in the background. This is the strategy employed by renowned brands. They don’t really miss out on content part but then they do it tactfully. Rather than cluttering every bit of your layout in which you make Content, make it more diversified.

In fact, diversification of content is what users want you to do. This means that today the trend is more of combining text, graphics, media, videos, art, infographics etc.

 

  • Niche based interactive content

Now some industries are exploring by creating more interactive content. They are doing it through two-way interactions with their users by meeting them or creating content that touches their heart’s core. For say if a web designing company is making a graphic for kids, it will make it emotional. It also conducts regular surveys and polls. This way interaction is bound to happen. 

Besides this, many companies are now making entirely exotic Content in terms of written material and products. They are doing so to set them apart from other commonly made content.

For say Apple has unique iOS Content! Or Canva is renowned owing to its uniqueness! 

 

  • More audio-video usage 

Google is the best example of this latest trend. Today, what companies are doing is adding flavours to their Content. They are doing it by adding virtual assistants. Who doesn’t know the Google assistant? It’s the best example of how adding an audio assistant can make the content look creative and interesting.

Besides that, companies are hiring graphic/web designers to make good videos for them. The video usage is going to make your content look amazing! And that’s what everyone is doing. 

 

  • Influencer Marketing

We all know the likes of content creators like Dolly Singh, Bhuvan Bham etc. on Instagram. They are social media influencers who are further employed by companies to market their brand. The companies are now complementing content creation with influencer marketing. They are not just making brilliant Content but also marketing and pitching it well. 

That has made all the difference in the way content is consumed! 

 

So we have figured out the way in which the content industry is improvising itself and setting new trends. The content is transcending all the rigid aspects and is now exploring the possibilities of doing something exclusive. After all, only when the consumers will consume good content once, they will consume it again! 

 

Watching Machine Learning Change: For The Last 10 Years

What is Machine learning? 

Now some of you may be pondering upon the fact as to what is Machine learning. Well, it’s basically related to the process of handling a large amount of data. Usually, in the business world, there’s always one or the other thing going on. So to handle large processes or facilitate the process, we take help of certain equipment or machinery. This is what makes up the cumulative term of ” Machine Learning”. It includes things like automatic extraction of data or analyzing large data.  Basically, machine learning employs the usage of Artificial intelligence to improve itself over a period of time. Machine learning focuses on the development of computer programs.

For the past 10 years, Machine learning has changed quite a lot. Artificial intelligence has transformed to become more sustainable and efficient. Thus, with time come needs. And the need is obviously the mother of all innovations! 

Take a look at this trajectory of Machine learning

 

Some machine learning methods

  • Supervised machine learning algorithms apply past learning to new data using examples to predict future events. The system is able to provide targets for any new input after training. The algorithm can also compare its output with the correct, output to find errors.
  •  Unsupervised machine learning algorithms are used when the information used to train is neither classified nor referred. The system doesn’t figure out the right output, but it explores the data.
  • Semi-supervised machine learning algorithms are in between the supervised and unsupervised learning since they use both labelled and unlabeled data for training. The systems that use this method are able to considerably improve learning accuracy. 
  • Reinforcement machine learning algorithms is a learning method that interacts with its environment by producing actions and discovers errors or rewards. 

 

The ancients of machine learning.

  • The terms “machine learning” first appeared in 1952. It was in 2010 that  George Dahl and Abdel-rahman Mohamed proved that deep learning speech recognition tools are effective. They also mentioned that they can provide some good industrial advantages. This provided an impetus to the process.
  •  At the same point of time, Google dived in the process too. It announced its self-driving automobile project, called Waymo
  • Finally, DeepMind was established in September 2010. It is a pioneer in the fields of AI and deep learning

 

From 2011 onwards

  • In 2011, Artificial intelligence went on a different path. It literally shook the world. The reason was of it was: 

 IBM’ s question and answer system defeated Jeopardy. 

  • While IBM machines were working on portraying human intellects and other features, Apple introduced Siri, its virtual assistant. Though it was banned by IBM.
  •  Siri uses speech recognition, a natural language user interface, and convolutional neural networks. The technology enables users to conduct searches and make recommendations. It also answers questions, and perform tasks via internet services.

 

Some other ventures in this field

 

  •  Besides this, another application -The Oculus Rift is used in many applications beyond VR gaming, including industrial visualization and design, education, and media.  

 

  • In 2013, Boston Dynamics created Atlas. Atlas is basically a dog-like robot. It is capable to carry out a variety of human activities. 

 

  • In 2013, Google also introduced a beta test version of Google Glass.  For those who don’t know, Google Glass is a heads-up display mounted on eyeglasses. It supports functions including facial recognition and text translation, besides other functions.  

 

  • Google turned heads again in 2014. Guess why? Well, it did something completely different this time. It bought another program DeepMind for  $500 million.

 

  • Also, who doesn’t know Alexa? Well, some people have found a best friend in her! Amazon’s Alexa is again a new process of Machine learning. It is also a milestone set in the department of Artificial intelligence. Who doesn’t want Alexa? 

 

Just a few years ago 

  • Finally, let’s come to recent times. Around 4 years ago, that is, in 2016,  Google Assistant came up.  We all know what Google assistant is. Don’t we? It is an  AI-powered virtual assistant that engages in a two-way conversation. Thanks to Google’s language!  Google Assistant can conduct Internet searches, schedule events, set alarms, etc.

 It truly plays the role of a reliable assistant.

  • In 2018, a different thing happened. A Paris-based art collective of artists and AI researchers created some artwork. They did it using an algorithm that analyzed image data from some portraits. 

 

  • Finally, we have landed in 2020. And what we see today is the expansion of Artificial intelligence in all spheres. This not only includes business but healthcare too. If today a pandemic has engulfed us all over, then data scientists are also working to dive into unexplored areas of Machine learning to improve analysis methods. 
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Visual Stories To Deliver Ideas & Influential Advertising

Throughout the ages, storytelling is something that has remained the constant and most preferred medium of delivering ideas. Whether it is ancient folktales that are passed on from generation to generation, or modern-day popular novels or comics, the storytelling is a wonderful way of letting a large mass of people know your idea, understand that idea, and get influenced by it somehow.
Visual stories are told with pictures. They are a very efficient method of storytelling because human minds tend to remember pictures more than words. Thus, oftentimes we can recall the events shown in a film better than when we read in a book. This gives the upper hand to visual language over written language. You could use this to your advantage while selling any product or providing any service.


Take, for example, you repair cars. Now, the most common form of advertisement is posters and written signboards, both online and offline. The farthest you can do is creating an official website with blogs promoting your service. But that would require your target readers to take out the time to read about your company and why they should prefer you. On the other hand, if you use unlimited graphic designs to tell a visual story for the audience which would require only 1 to 2 minutes then that becomes more preferable.


What is being implied here is not that nobody reads nowadays or that no one cares about reading. It is not for that reason. The truth is, in the case of written language, the idea that you wish to share is confined to only those who speak or understand that particular language. But when you show something that has pictures or uses unlimited graphic design to tell something, the idea is broadcasted to a wider range of audiences. Those who do not understand English or any other popular language will also be able to understand your nature of service!


So how do you tell a visual story that transcends the barriers of language, and is also appealing at the same time? Here are some top tips on how to efficiently tell a visual story:

Try and tell a complete story


This is something very basic and you have to keep in mind. When you are using visual stories for promotional purposes you should keep in mind that you will have to finish the story. It needs to have a conclusion where your service or your product saves the day or becomes beneficial. In case you want to create a series, your promotion should adapt to the series as well, and each episode should have concrete content that defines your idea and promotes your service.

Moreover, you may choose from an illustration of still images like a comic or use animation tools to tell your story. In any case, use minimum words and more of action to show what you wish to convey. From this perspective, it is better to opt for animated stories as it captures movements better and the human mind can remember more of it.

Your story should have a start, a climax and an ending or denouncement to mark the conclusion.

While still images compilation are good as well, but the human mind is normally more attracted to moving bodies.

Build a relatable protagonist


This is something to keep the interest of your viewers glued to the screen. A protagonist is the main character of your story, and if this protagonist is someone too far removed from reality then your viewers will not be able to relate. Think about a popular comic, for example, Spider-man. The protagonist Peter Parker was someone quite relatable, with high school problems and being bullied. The supernatural elements were introduced upon a relatable character, which could have been any of us instead of him. This is what is appealing to the viewers- that the central hero could be one of them. Use this to your visual storytelling to hold your viewer’s attention. The fact that the problem that your service will solve could occur to any of your viewers is what you need to focus on.

The protagonist needs to be someone ordinary at first, just as someone like the audience themselves. One with actual problems. This person seeks out the services of your company to get success at a particular area. This is hugely promotional.

Understand the color combo!


Graphic design colors in your visual story play a huge role, whether you understand it or not. Colors can bring out emotions and so it is really important you know which graphic design colors should be applied where. For example, darker tones of blue and grey are mostly used to create suspense or something mysterious. On the other hand, warmer tones such as red, brown, or orange might show a jovial mood. Lighter shades such as pink or yellow might depict playfulness or a cheerful environment.


It is quite natural for you not to understand all the color codes or metaphorical use of graphic design colors and that is completely okay. Not knowing about this should not become a hindrance to your visual story. That is why there are companies such as Draftss that provide graphic design packages for small companies. They have a team of experts on graphic design colors and they will provide you with suggestions and ideas to improve your quality of visual graphics.

Dark shades of blue and black and grey are used to arouse suspense. Note the mood this scenery arouses.

Note the shift in mood for this image. This does not evoke the same eeriness as in the previous one. This is a warmer picture.

Play your trump card at the end


The most important parts of any content are the beginning and the conclusion. While the starting of your visual story should be impressive, the ending is what will remain in the minds of the viewer long after the story has ended. So save the best and most influential scene for the last. This will be your trump card. Make sure the major promotional and enlightening things appears in the end.

The ending needs to show the protagonist solving their problem while promoting your company subtly. You may say that your service or manufactured good HELPED the hero achieve their goal. This powerful ending will lead to the belief that your company will let anyone achieve similar goals.

Visual stories are a great way to promote your business and attain mass viewers. It adds to your company’s creativity and increases your target customers. If your visual story is motivating enough or influential enough your business could grow exponentially. Thus, you may just do a quick Google search “graphic designing companies near me” to check out companies that provide graphic design packages for small companies, in case you wish to take care of your budget. You may check out Draftss who has this benefit of design packages for small companies at very reasonable prices. So go ahead and check out!

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Draftss: Year in Review (2019)

Hey Readers,

Here we are with some year ending stats of 2019. We had a wonderful year at Draftss.com with some major growth, learnings, and setbacks. We shall try to elaborate each of them below starting with some introduction and numbers:

Draftss is a productized unlimited graphic design & frontend code service on a weekly subscription. Draftss covers services from Logo Design, Branding, Illustrations, Social Media Graphics, Web Design, App Design, UI/UX, Frontend coding, WordPress and just about everything else there is within Design. The designs subscription starts from $89/week.

Stats for 2019

$66k ARR

54 clients

8267 designs created

114 pages coded

Learnings throughout the year 2019

While there were several successes throughout the year, there were more setbacks as compared to the successes. I think it’s apt that we focus on the mistakes that we made throughout the year and the learnings that we gained out of it.

Annual Pricing

The first and foremost mistake that comes on top of my mind was having an Annual Pricing on our website giving the user an impression that our service was pretty expensive. We had initially launched with 2 pricing options of Monthly Pricing and Annual Pricing for Design Plan. Our monthly Design plan costs $349/month and our annual Design plan costs $3490/year. For a customer visiting the website would find the amount to be too excessive to be purchased in the first instance. Ideally, the visitor wouldn’t consider purchasing an Annual plan without testing our services thoroughly with our monthly plans.

We did receive a few inquiries for the annual plans but none of them converted into annual customers. We tried upselling the annual plans to our existing customers, but the resulting amount was pretty significant for startup founders to commit at one go. We eventually learned that B2B companies and other design agencies are more suitable for Annual plans.

P.S. We have a few customers that we have been working with for more than a year but have been paying for monthly subscriptions.

Payment Partner Mishap

Often when your service providers make an upgrade, it’s pretty exciting to see new features and make the most out of your current provider. However, in our case, every time there was an upgrade, we faced some new issues. In one instance, they were unable to capture new payments for around 15-25 days. We didn’t even know such an issue occurred till a customer emailed us that she was trying to sign up but her payment kept failing. After constant follow-ups with the payment gateway provider, it took around 20-25 days to get the issue resolved.

In a separate incident where our service provider made an upgrade, they were unable to auto-renew the subscriptions of our existing customers for 10-14 days. So customers whose subscription got expired within this period enjoyed a week of service due to the non-billing of our payment provider. We switched to Paddle during this incident, but they shut down our account abruptly quoting “We do not support human services” even though we had discussed with their support team about our productized service before moving 50% of our clients to Paddle.

P.S. We are still using the same provider to date. However, since Stripe is now available in India, we might switch to Stripe soon.

How did we figure that we were proceeding in the wrong direction?

We participated in Startup School 2019. This participation has been one of the most productive things that we have done this year. Speaking to other founders made us some serious errors that we made. Learning from these mistakes we made some major reformations in the company one of them being shifting a full-time team to a partially local remote team.

Some other major learnings from this participation:

  • All founders are struggling. Some founders are struggling with the product-market fit, while others are struggling with growth or hiring. Just make the most out of every day and it will be a gradual success over the course of time.
  • Discussions lead to a whole new world of ideas and tactics that you can implement in your startup.
  • The synergy between founders can go a long way in helping build each other’s brand.
  • Give back to the community to mould the ecosystem.
  • Learn from your competitors.

P.S. We are participating in Startup School 2020.

Shifting to a New Office

Learnings over the course of the year helped us make appropriate decisions. This included having a partially remote team which also helped up cut down on the office and administration expenses. Currently, the founders, sales, operations, live chat, and some designers & developers work full-time from our office. Remaining designers & developers are local and work remotely and visit office occasionally only when required.

P.S. Real-estate is pretty expensive in Mumbai even as per global standards.

Hiring Dilemma

Hiring was also a pretty challenging task for us. We have been very choosy with having the right person to work with our team. This meant that anybody who qualified to be a good designer didn’t necessarily mean that we had them on board unless they sync with the social environment within the company.

We have been evaluating the candidates via Behance/Dribbble along with a few local hiring platforms to find the right fit for Draftss. After the preliminary examination, we give the designers a short design test. This test often comprises of a live project which we receive from our clients with the actual design brief and then evaluate the designer’s submissions.

For developers, we have one standard code test that we ask all developers to code and then we evaluate the developer’s submissions before meeting them at our office personally.

If we are unsure about a candidate’s skill-set, we give them additional tasks to ensure we are definitely hiring the right fit for the company.

P.S. All live-test projects are paid.

Friction without our own Dashboard

We do not have a Draftss Dashboard for our clients at present. We manage all projects using third-party tools like Trello, Airtable, Basecamp, Asana, etc. We feel that it’s better to use a tool that the client is already using to manage their day-to-day projects. This way client wouldn’t have to use a new tool that he is not familiar with and we will not have to develop, manage and upgrade the dashboard to fit our needs. We have our dashboard ready but we are still unsure if we should launch our dashboard or not.

P.S. Internally, we use Google Sheets & WhatsApp to manage all design projects.

Failed to Launch Projects

In 2019, we built several projects. But due to circumstances and time constraints we were unable to give sufficient time to these projects to make the most out of it:

Projects Launched
Projects to be launched in 2020
  • Draftss Dashboard
  • Feedback Annotation SaaS
  • Reviews on the best landing page
  • Free vector Illustrations for Startups
  • Prospectss.com – Lead email finder and email verifier SaaS
  • Artworkss.com – Auto-design SaaS

 

unlimited graphic design

“Life doesn’t get easier, you just get stronger.”

We will be updating this post with more learnings and mistakes that we faced throughout the year so that it helps you learn and grow with us. With all these new learnings and experience we are prepared to face 2020 head-on with brand new goals and challenges. If you have any further questions, you can reach us directly on jd@draftss.com

merry-christmas-unlimited-graphic-design-2020

Merry Christmas

Hey,

2020 is around the corner. A brand new year and whole new opportunities and chances to fix old mistakes.

Your Christmas gift awaits at the end of this post.

We value all interactions with our customers by partnering with them to understand and analyze their needs. We build solutions that they love. We wanted to thank you for your ongoing support. It has been fantastic working with you in 2019 and we hope we can continue doing business together in the forthcoming year.

This year, we have brought major updates to our services. Some of these upgrades include:

Pricing – We introduced an affordable price option for customers starting from $89/week for design and $169/week for design & code.

CMS: WordPress – CMS has been a brand new addition to our category of services. Along with providing HTML, CSS, JS, jQuery code for the landing page, we started building websites in WordPress.

Page Builders: Elementor, Oxygen, Beaver Builder, Divi Builder, WP Bakery, Visual Composer – Along with supporting WordPress, we had gone ahead to support many popular page builders.

New Design Softwares: Figma & Keynote – We have added Figma for creating Web & App UI/UX, and Keynote for creating presentations, investor’s pitch decks among other new additions to our services.

Integrating with all the popular project management & communication platforms – The customer no longer has to add an additional dashboard to our service. They can invite us to their current project management tool and we shall integrate with it to manage your design and code projects.

Deployment – Many of our customers had no clue about hosting their website. They had to either request a techie family/friend to help them with their hosting. It was then we decided to include hosting/deployment support within our services with no additional cost.

1000+ designs – We have added fresh designs to our portfolio. This not only makes our website look good but, this proves our hard word and concern to give the best service to our customers.

Customer Support – Not to mention but our support is more comprehensive than ever.

Christmas is a time of giving, and we’d like to give you a huge thanks for being our cherished customer and here’s a small gift for you. Use the promo code “XMAS” for 20% off on your next monthly subscription.
This offer is valid on the first month and shall expire on 5th January 2020. Let’s start this new year designing some wonderful creatives for you 🙂

Have a happy holiday season and we look forward to working with you in the New Year. From the entire team of Draftss.com, we wish you a Merry Christmas and a Prosperous New Year.

how to start your startup and grow outsourcing design and development service

Side Project Startup: Expectations vs Reality

Startups have been generating a lot of buzz across the world, over the decades and people have been turning to entrepreneurship overnight. Every startup begins as a result of intense enthusiasm or real passion. However, the popularity and growth of your startup all boils down to how well you can implement your idea and be consistent about it. People tend to have a perception that startups are glamorous and make you famous, but once the reality checks are done, you will see that it is easier said than done. It is gravely disappointing when you fall short on your own expectations, which is why it is better to take precautions by making sure you know the realities.

So, we have made a list of certain returns which people expect from startups, alongside what startups actually bring to the table.

1. Hiring

Expectation: “I’m gonna get the perfect workforce for my startup with whatever I offer them.”

Reality: Well, the reality is totally different than that. When it comes to employees, it will be safe to say that ‘perfect’ only applies to Disney characters and your imaginations. You need to compromise some of your collective wishes and hopes while you are going through the list before recruitment, and even more while interviewing them, because the perfect person just does not exist. Also while interviewing your candidates, you might just happen to come across someone who fits the position almost like a piece of a puzzle, but is not satisfied with what you are offering. Hence, all you are left with is another deal-breaker.


2. Involving Tech Stuff

Expectation: You might think that you have a brilliant idea which involves a fair amount of technological stuff, and that it won’t be that tough, with the ample funding you received for the project.

Reality: As thrilling as it is to merge technology with anything that you offer, you should keep in mind that it will not turn you into a millionaire overnight. At present, with so much competition around, the bankability of an idea can put investors at sixes and sevens. When you are starting and registering a new business, you certainly are stepping in the right direction, but it could crumble just like a house of cards. Hence, your idea should be resilient and you should be prepared to rack up occasional debts and still make your ends meet.


3. Workload

Expectation: You would start thinking that since you own a startup, you have to work less and thereby, do all those little things you always wanted to do in free time or maybe visit a place or two where you always wanted to go to.

Reality: Well, let’s get one thing straight, that is, you will be working more than ever. Period! You are going to see that there will be countless things left to do and you may often feel running out of time to check that list off. Running operational errands, paying bills, keeping customers satisfied and even grabbing every possible opportunity that comes your way, is going to keep you busy all day. Your startup is going to require your unvarying attention and even micro-management in some cases.


4. Investors

Expectation: “My investors and I are almost like friends! We hang out together and have beers on weekends, so they will understand me and my business decisions because our relationship is beyond money.”

Reality: Well sure, but there’s a catch. You are more like friends with benefits to them, that is, they are cheerful when things are going smoothly, and sullen when you hit a rough patch or things get sour in terms of business. To be blunt, you love each other only because of the money involved in the business. You are going to love them when their money helps your startup grow and they will be happy to support you till your business helps their money grow. So, to build trust, just keep them satisfied with timely returns. When you have proved your worth and earned their trust, only then will you have laid the foundations of a long-term relationship with your investors.


5. Virtual Offices

Expectation: You might have a feeling that human interaction is highly overrated and that you can grow your startup with a virtual team.

Reality: There is no doubt that a revolution in the form of the remote workplace has been doing wonders for companies since the past couple of decades. However, it will be really beneficial for your business if you keep the offices as less virtual as possible, during the initial days. This is because emergencies may arise anytime during the early stages of a business, and you will have to take certain decisions on the floor. The luxury of Skype calls may not be available to you at times. So, you can, in no way, replace the physical presence of a team. Perhaps, the most essential aspect of your newborn startup is building your A-team, which plays a larger role to define the future of your startup. You know what they say in the modern corporate world: “Keep your friends close, your enemies closer, and your core team the closest.”


6. Stakeholding

Expectation: “I am not gonna give up my share of equity to tech partner because I came up with the idea and I helped to raise the fund as well.”

Reality: Though ideas are important, executing them is the key. To support this, here is an example. Thomas Alva Edison was not the one who actually invented the light bulb first, but he worked to make it commercially viable. Many others were in the race to be the first one to create a commercial light bulb, but we all know who did it first. Developers are really valuable assets these days and they do have all the potential to add significant value to your startup. The one whom you trust the most can be the most valuable asset in your team. Hence, if you give him even a bit more than 50% of the shares, your business will be reaping the best possible advantages.

Now, are you an entrepreneur? If you are, I’m sure you must have had a few things in your head while starting up. What were your expectations and were you right to have expected them? If no, then what did you do differently in reality when you started making money? Well, do not hesitate to share your thoughts in the comments section below.