Although we all strive to be productive as possible during work hours, there are times where inspiration and motivation disappear just when we need it most. In search of some inspiration, I looked up a few websites that can get your creative gears turning again and also relieve some stress when working on major projects and pushing to meet deadlines.
Making the most of your time at work can be challenging—especially during a slow day at the office! Whenever I’m not feeling motivated or inspired, with school or work, I generally try to find outlets to relieve that “block” so that I can get back into action. These websites have helped me in recent weeks to be more creative and to think out of the box when it comes to client work or even writing a blog post!
There are a lot of resources out on the web that make the business of building websites easy for just about anyone. At first, it may seem completely out of your skill set to make a website that looks good and is –most importantly—functional, but with these helpful tips even the most basic online user can create a good-looking website for professional networking or a personal portfolio.
Before you start building a new website, there are some key questions you need to answer first:
After deciding on the type of website you want and the theme you find most interesting, it’s important to remember that although WordPress makes it easy to build a fully functional, beautiful website…it’s going to take some work.
When installing your theme, it probably won’t look anything like the demo you previewed—but don’t panic yet. Read carefully through the instructions of your theme and download all of the necessary plugins to make the structure look exactly like how you want it. It’s important to start off with all of the right tools rather than trying to fix a website that is missing a critical plugin, widget, or other installation.
There are 3 plugins that I recommend ANY user should download. It’ll make life easier and requires absolutely no programming knowledge to make a website look like any professional website you’ve ever come across.
The internet offers many resources out there for people who are just starting to build their own websites. However, I felt it was important to share some of my website hacks (more specifically for WordPress) as I use these tools for my own personal website in addition FLIRT’s blog site. Even if you have no prior knowledge to websites or content management systems, WordPress offers you tools that both professional businesses such as FLIRT and myself as an intern, use on the daily to make our websites look good and function perfectly. You don’t have to be a professional to make your website LOOK professional.
The industry of design is increasingly competitive and complex, especially since the tools for design have dramatically changed due to the technological innovations of the past decade. With so many online resources and programs, the world of design allows for more and more people to explore their creative side in an expansive digital platform.
As young designers and graphic interns at FLIRT, Perry and I are quickly realizing there are certain elements to design that remain unique to the individual, cultivating signature styles and preferred creative processes. We interviewed each other about our own design workflows and about the many different types of design that influence us every day we’re in the office! It turns out while we have our differences in our preferred mediums, we have a lot of similarities in our creative process and what trends we like in design.
What is your preferred medium or program to use and why?
Mae: I’m definitely not a traditional graphic designer in the sense that I had no formal classes or anything. I’ve been using Photoshop for many years now and feel comfortable making things work through that.
Perry: My favorite program to work in is Illustrator because its vector based and more forgiving than Photoshop. I don’t really have a favorite medium since most of my work is digital.
What is your creative process when approaching a new project?
Mae: It really depends on how expansive the project is…but I usually draw some quick sketches of what I’m thinking about and play around in Photoshop until something ‘clicks’ for me.
Perry: My process is about the same. I start of sketching my initial ideas on paper. Then I pick which program I’ll start in depending on if the project is image based, type based, or a mixture of both.
Where do you get inspiration to create or design things?
Mae: The Internet! I browse Pinterest, design threads on Reddit, and other design work that has to do with the same subject of the project I’m working on. If I see one element of design from multiple sources that I like, I try to work that into what I’m designing in a new way.
Perry: I go to designspiration.net and search for work using keywords or color schemes. Most of the work is really well designed so I can pull certain elements out and use them in my own work. Sometimes I also get inspiration from music. It’s a little hard to explain but I try to emulate the mood of a song visually.
Lastly, what’s your favorite type of design?
Mae: I come from a photography background, so using a lot of photo visuals is really interesting to me. Minimalistic design along with great photography is my favorite combination.
Perry: I’m also really into minimalism. I just think there’s so much beauty in creating balance only using a few elements. I think my favorite section of design is logos because logos may seem like a small part of a brand but they hold so much weight.
We found that even with our different backgrounds in design we still begin our creative process by sketching and quickly getting ideas out. Our inspiration was also similar in the sense that we both use the internet and social media instead of physical things when we need extra help to form ideas, which may be because we are both young designers.
Now that you know more about us as interns feel free to learn more about FLIRT Communications and our family by clicking the link below!
Internships make a difference and they are investments in your future! Often times, students are reluctant to persue internships because they worry they’ll be stuck doing menial tasks like getting coffee or making copies and let’s face it- no one wants to work for free. The truth is, although not all internships pay in cash, they do pay in other ways. Here’s how
Over the years at FLIRT, we have had some tremendous interns. They all had exceptional communication skills on top of having a creative imagination that made them stand out above the rest. They were all willing to vocalize their thoughts and opinions and be themselves. We recently tracked some of them down and got the inside scoop on the next chapters of their lives:
Interned with FLIRT from August 2011 to August 2013. Tori is currently working as a Strategist at LPK, a brand design and innovation agency, in Cincinnati. She has done some volunteer work with Autism Speaks in both Chicago and Cincinnati. Some of her favorite FLIRT memories are Pete singing goodbye songs (she witnessed three, all of which were hilarious), the birthday they filled her cubicle with balloons, and her interview, where the first thing Paul said to her was that she had to eat a whole canister of Garrett’ popcorn.
Interned with FLIRT from January to December of 2012. Maria is currently working for Vision Critical, an international market research company, in Sydney, Australia. Some of her key takeaways after spending a year with the FLIRT family is how important it is to feel supported by by your peers, mentors and superiors as it feeds directly into your level of investment and overall attitude towards the work you do and the people you do it for.
Interned with FLIRT from January to May of 2013. Stephanie is currently working at Ipos, which is an international market research company, where she specializes in global brand tracking. Some of her key takeaways from FLIRT include the importance of “fitting in” with an organization. She also said that the culture of creativity, drive and, ultimately fun, made coming into the office everyday a real joy.
Interned with FLIRT August 2013 to May of 2014. Rachel is currently working in the freelance world, where she works on designs for various bars and restaurants throughout Chicago, as well as doing designs for wedding packages, company logos, band posters, birthday invites, and even PowerPoint layouts. Her words of wisdom to me were to take advantage of who you know or who you’ve met throughout your college career. Also,do exactly what you want to do, and don’t worry about what other people say has been her best move!
Interned with FLIRT from June to August of 2014. Scott is currently working at InteractiveH2O in Chicago, a digital-marketing start-up specializing in social media and paid search advertising. He works as a Digital Project Specialist, helping clients advertise on Google, Bing, Facebook, and YouTube. He credits FLIRT with giving him the skills and experience he needed to land a job and take on the “real world.”
After getting the chance to chat back and forth with some of our past interns, it was clear to me that they all can agree on one thing: that the opportunities and learning experiences they had while interning at FLIRT were immeasurable. And that the support, guidance and responsibility they were given helped all of them to grow professionally and personally. Once a FLIRTy, always a FLIRTy!
While January 1st was only 35 days ago, studies show that around 92% of New Year’s resolutions have already failed. And when you’re in the event world, the most important goal of all may be to stay organized. For many of us however, that’s easier said than done. Take me for example. In high school I didn’t so much as own a planner, I wrote my assignments on my hand and then proceeded to wash them all off (by mistake, I promise). My life was in a constant state of chaos and disarray. BUT, when I started university 3 years ago I realized my old habits were not going to suffice. At the end of week 1 I was already drowning in assignments and due dates. I finally sat myself down and took a long, hard look in the mirror, vowing to turn over a new, much more organized, leaf. Three years later I am a changed woman. I’ve gone from trying to decode my chicken scratch on the palms of my hands to breezing through my color-coded calendar featuring upcoming events, meetings, appointments, and most importantly my school work. It’s 2015 and luckily we have a ton of tech tricks to stay organized, but if you’re even slightly involved in the event world, you know that organization isn’t something that can simply be left up to our iPhones.
We are posting this in February because if you’ve fallen off the wagon even slightly (and odds are you have) we want to make sure that although we can’t help get you back on the treadmill or eating strictly kale, we can lend these 6 helpful pointers to get your organizational habits back into high-gear: