Questions regarding hardware or analogical tools (but please use software-recommendation for software ones!)

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36
votes
8answers
2k views

Is there a good resource or tool to help build a palette/color scheme around colors I select?

No matter how nice the composition, flow, and lines of my design are, if I am not copying directly from nature, I have a very difficult time picking a decent color scheme. It either looks too drab, ...
28
votes
24answers
31k views

Why are Apple Macs used so much in the graphic design industry?

Why is it that graphic designers more often use an Apple Mac? I am studying graphic design and I am hoping to do some freelance work in my spare time. I have a unit in my studies to discover why Macs ...
24
votes
8answers
14k views

Are graphics tablets worth it?

I've always felt curious about graphics tablets, but I've never even used one. Most people I know either give up or love them. I'm not a big illustrator myself, but I do the occasional doodle and ...
15
votes
7answers
7k views

Learning to draw: start in the pen and paper realm or the digital space?

My question is should I start with paper to learn to draw or learn to digitally draw with Photoshop or Illustrator or any image manipulation application. I am thinking of using a book or some other ...
12
votes
5answers
976 views

Web-based workflow solutions for graphic designers (hosted and self-run)?

There are some common tasks in almost every graphic designer's workflow that are made immensely easy by the Internet, but are often clumsy to handle through traditional channels like E-Mail. ...
12
votes
1answer
186 views

What tools would Monks use when DESIGNING a large illuminated letter or pattern?

The answer here: http://graphicdesign.stackexchange.com/a/35128/2611 got me thinking about how illuminated letters were designed. There's a lot of resources out there discussing illuminated texts ...
11
votes
10answers
54k views

How to set the rotation point and use Transform Each in Illustrator?

I have a triangle I'm trying to rotate in Illustrator using the Object->Transform->Transform Each command, but I can't figure out how to set the rotation point like I can if I just use Free ...
10
votes
6answers
1k views

What analog tools should every designer have today?

Prior to the proliferation of software, namely Adobe and Aldus, a designer needed an entire toolbox full of things to get a job done. From t-squares and triangles, to ruling pens, masking tape, photo ...
9
votes
2answers
19k views

How to align objects side by side with a specified distance between them in Illustrator?

I am creating an animated sprite list in Adobe Illustrator. I finished creating the sprites and used the Horizontal/Vertical Distribute Center commands to distribute the objects equally in some area. ...
9
votes
2answers
235 views

What printing techniques or folding tools can I use to hand fold a commercially printed design without it cracking?

I recently created some tickets that were professionally printed then hand folded into an origami heart shape. We used 170 GSM paper and I'm not sure what ink the printers used. They arrived ...
7
votes
3answers
639 views

How can I automate the process of cutting intricate shapes out of paper?

I am trying to find whereabouts and name for this kind of automatic paper scissors, source of image here. I understand it so that one plugs in image with formats such as vector and raster and then it ...
6
votes
4answers
690 views

What is the name of hobby grade equipment to create photos where the background can be easily removed?

I know that in movies they use green screens or similar to be able to edit out the background from shots. But what is the name of a piece of equipment or setup I need in order to take a picture of say ...
5
votes
3answers
916 views

How do you call “Charte Graphique” in English?

This is not really a translation question - more of a designer vocabulary. How do you call the set of visuals, logos, designs, colors, fonts... that make a whole design project? In French we would ...
5
votes
2answers
51 views

How to prove an image has been released under Creative Commons?

Assume you use some images with a Creative Commons license. The creative commons license states that the license cannot be revoked if you acquired the images while published as Creative Commons. ...
5
votes
1answer
2k views

Illustrator eyedropper: What effect does different 'Pick up' and 'Apply' settings have?

Double-click on the Adobe Illustrator eyedropper icon, and you get a useful panel of advanced options that allow you to control what it picks up and what it applies. Two columns, 'Eyedropper picks up' ...
5
votes
3answers
487 views

iOS, Android, etc., tablet devices in a design workflow?

I'm going to have to spring for one or more tablets (iPad, Tab, whatever) for testing ePubs, digital magazine ads, site rendering, etc. Because I don't have the consumer nature and also because I'd ...
4
votes
4answers
120 views

Design software that allows reuse of common elements, like the DRY principal of programming

Often when I am designing for the web (be it mocks, or full spreads of websites) I have many repeating elements throughout my document. I am looking to follow the Don't Repeat Yourself (DRY) ...
4
votes
2answers
364 views

Illustration on either matte paper or glossy paper

I have searched for this question here but I did not see anything in regards to paper. I ask this question because some have chosen different types of paper when illustrating and I do not understand ...
4
votes
1answer
796 views

Designing forms for printing in InDesign

I have to make a lot of forms in InDesign. Not interactive forms, just forms that need to be printed. It's really a pain making all the checkboxes, radio buttons, lines and text fields and ensuring ...
4
votes
1answer
630 views

What digitizer stylus would most naturally replicate the range of touch between a mechanical pencil and a Uniball micro-point?

I am looking to start digitizing my work by re-drafting it from sketch books. This question is less about specs and hardware and more about the feel of the media, both in terms of mechanical ...
4
votes
2answers
4k views

Illustrator: Pathfinder divide not working as expected

I'm trying my hand at making a map using illustrator. I'm fairly new at it so I'm still learning the ropes. I'm trying to divide up a continent into several countries using border lines. Here's an ...
4
votes
2answers
2k views

Can I connect multiple line segments to a single point using the pen tool in photoshop?

I'm using the pen tool in CS5 to draw shapes, and I'm getting more comfortable with it, but one thing I'd really like to be able to do is add to a path. For example, if I draw a circle, I'd like to ...
3
votes
4answers
11k views

How to change the color of the artboard in Adobe Illustrator?

It is practically impossible to edit a white illustration on the default white artboard background. Hiding the artboard makes the whole work area receive the artboard's white color. Is there a way ...
3
votes
3answers
535 views

What are some essential tools I need to start school?

I dont have an artistic background, so when I start school soon, I don't really know what I'm going to need and what I'm not going to need. I'm trying to prepare as much as I can before starting and ...
3
votes
2answers
4k views

What is InDesign used for?

What is Adobe InDesign used for as opposed to Photoshop or Illustrator?
3
votes
2answers
3k views

Getting Dimensions of Marquee Tool in Photoshop

Is it possible to get the dimensions (width, height, top left, top right, bottom left and bottom right) of the select area that is selected using the marquee tool. If yes how?
3
votes
2answers
207 views

What Windows-based tools do you use to create icons?

I'm working on a project that often needs small (16x16, rarely 32x32), simple, bespoke icons (either made from scratch or as slight modifications of other icons). Working on a Windows box, I end up ...
3
votes
2answers
567 views

What's the fastest-drying pen?

I'm talking about real pens, not software! I love drawing with Sharpies except that I often smear the lines with my sweaty wrists! What's a similar black drawing pen/marker (felt tip or otherwise) ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

How can I do spiral circle

I need to do the following shape in illustrator, if can be done by illustrator. I think it can be done by spiral, circle and pathfinder tools but I'm not sure. Please I need the details of how to do ...
3
votes
4answers
1k views

3D character modeling tool

I am working on building a Strategy Game (it will be in 2.5D), and for graphic design part we are using Illustrator and Photoshop for designing (including designing characters). Now we want to start ...
3
votes
2answers
215 views

How to preview colors when using the color picker in Illustrator?

When using Adobe Illustrator, how do I preview my changes when I'm using the color picker to change the color of an element? Picking the color of an element is dependent on what's around it, so I'd ...
3
votes
1answer
175 views

Is there a color scheme designer like Kuler that can hold many colors (+30) at a time?

I'm designing a color scheme for a web application with a data dashboard. I want the graphs and data visualizations to have a default color palette with distinct colors that maximize the ease of ...
3
votes
1answer
1k views

Can Pixelmator handle Photoshop layer styles?

Can Pixelmator handle Photoshop layer styles? How compatible is Pixelmator with the rest of Photoshop and the other Adobe graphics programs?
3
votes
6answers
3k views

Why doesn't the gradient tool appear over the object I've applied it to in Illustrator CS6?

Why doesn't the gradient tool appear over the object I've applied it to in Illustrator CS6? I have to click and hold down to adjust the size of the gradient on an object or just use the gradient ...
2
votes
6answers
10k views

What computer hardware matters to a graphic designer?

I've had my MacBook Pro since 2007 and I'm starting to think about what the next system might look like. I'm not made of money, but if upgrading a component helps to make me a more efficient worker ...
2
votes
2answers
922 views

Simplest way to create a product box image

Would like to present our products as pictures of 3D product boxes like this: I think Adobe Illustrator with the persepctive tool could to it, but I wondered if there is maybe something even ...
2
votes
5answers
381 views

Wireframing tool to design a website idea

I have nothing to do with design, because I don't know how to mix two colors. Some time ago, I've read about some tools which are used in the creation of interfaces for application and web pages. In ...
2
votes
3answers
18k views

how create rounded corners for a layer or selection

I have a white screen area 142x113 px in Photoshop... I select half of this area and tried Select ⇒ Modify ⇒ Smooth but it does not work the way I expected. I tried decreasing the ...
2
votes
4answers
430 views

Best tools for scanning doodles?

I like to doodle with pencil and paper. I'd like to scan it, or take a picture with my phone, then have as much of it converted to vectors as possible. Ideally, my crooked lines would become ...
2
votes
2answers
3k views

How do I control the way the cropping tool works in Photoshop CS3?

I'd like to set the behavior of the cropping tool. I want it to define cropping areas based on... A fixed, numerical set of pixel dimensions. A given proportion, e.g., a 9 by 12 area of arbitrary ...
2
votes
1answer
4k views

How can I find the coordinates of a pixel in Photoshop CS4?

Lets say i create a new document of 800px x 800px and I take the cursor on a particular point in the document. How would I know which pixel this cursor is at this moment?
2
votes
3answers
3k views

Color mixer that can mix 3 or more colors?

I'm looking for some sort of service, tool or application – even manual techniques – where you can digitally mix/blend 3 or more colors (i.e. not 2 as in most applications out there) and get the ...
2
votes
5answers
3k views

A good tool to visually design graphical user interfaces for iOS devices?

I'm developing an iOS apps and I need to find an easy design tool, something that would allow me to drag widgets into my GUI, and visually build it. I'm currently using Adobe Illustrator with this ...
2
votes
1answer
146 views

How to delete the path between two nodes, but not the nodes themselves in Inkscape?

I have a contour object, and I would like to delete a part of it (a line). So I converted the object to a path, selected the Edit paths by nodes tool and deleted the unwanted nodes, now I have the ...
2
votes
2answers
2k views

What causes the Eyedropper to change all samples to white?

My Eyedropper has suddenly started changing all samples to white. No matter what area of an image I click it samples white, this is regardless of sample size or modifier keys. If I manually select a ...
2
votes
2answers
314 views

Most accurate way to cut up a shape at 45 degrees

I am working with the latest version of Adobe Illustrator. I have the following: I would like to cup the shape at the following location, so that I create a flat document icon that is folded in one ...
2
votes
1answer
59 views

Is there a tool that fills an area by its surrounding borders?

By example: Is there a tool or a way to fill the white X shape so that the colors and patterns around it will blend into it as automatically as possible? I.e., I want to remove the X as close to ...
2
votes
1answer
935 views

What are good and maybe free UI storyboarding applications, especially for mobile UIs

Hi I would like to get an overview of existing UI desktop or online application, which may have a specialization towards user interaction modeling and mobile device interfaces. I guess there are some ...
2
votes
1answer
56 views

Simple tool for cropping and scaling images

I am wondering if there is a simple and quick tool for cropping and scaling images. For example, if when creating a web page for an online store, you might need a set of images for each product. ...
2
votes
1answer
86 views

Need help with pen tool

Let's say I've completed a path and the pen tool is no longer selected.( It's a straight line, not a closed circle.) Now I want to start from the ending point again and continue the line. How do I do ...