“The smaller the mind the greater the conceit.”
Greek slave & fable author (620 BC – 560 BC)
I have to admit that I came to twitter as one of the Late Majority and not as an Early Adopter, fortunately this has not prevented me from getting to know loads of really cool people especially in the twitter design community. Every now and then a list of so called Top Designers to follow will be published, some of these lists tend to leave the impression that only the “rockstars” are worth following and all the rest are just followers.
My lists will be different! No self-proclaimed rockstars, gurus, ninjas, rising stars, faded stars or twitterati darlings – just honest down to earth talented and fine people.
These lists will probably have at most a minimal impact on the number of followers these people get but that isn´t really the point, the point is I get to say thanks and give these guys the recognition they deserve.
Another thing I dislike about the Überlists are the overwhelming numbers (top impact follows, top 3 million rockstars etc. etc.) I will be avoiding the overkill temptation and instead recommending just a handful of people on each list…
So without further ado, let´s get on with it…
@StandUP4Design – Arnold Dela Cruz
Arnold has been a constant source of inspiration and encouragement for me since the very early days of my Twitter career. He is not only a talented designer whose energy and enthusiasm drive me onwards, but also the initiator of Design Democracy the coolest design community out there in the interwebs. Visit Design Democracy and join us on our journey.
@hollagraphics Donald G. Wooten II
Donald is a multi-talented straight-up no-nonsense all round cool dude. He is a dedicated creative soul with commitment and drive who likes nothing more than to cut through the (Twitter) BS and tell it like it is. A designer with a manifesto which I can absolutely relate to. Check out his website and you will see what I mean.
@kg_creative Kevin Garcia
My man on the West Coast. Kevin is an institutional graphic designer at the CSU Monterey Bay. Professional, Talented, Intelligent and Measured. Kevin´s honest and constructive critiques have been a defining factor in much of my recent work. Check out his portfolio for some great graphic design and corporate identity work.
@sunwukung Marcus Kielly
I know I said no ninjas but sunwukung is more than just a ninja he is a Zen Master of code, characters and creativity. Faster than Bruce Lee deadlier than Pai Mei and funnier than Jackie Chan. You better follow this guy or you might not live to regret it. Visit his website to see some excellent illustrations and character concepts.
@bkmacdaddy Brian K. McDaniel
I wish I had been following Brian for longer than I have. Brian is not only a great designer he is also an inspiring blogger who writes thought provoking and insightful posts on life the universe and everything. Brian is also the inspiration behind this idea but I am sure he won´t mind me taking his idea and running with it. Check out Brian´s Blog and portfolio here.
By now you will have followed these excellent fellas, visited their websites and become a better person for it. Don´t be disappointed if you are not on this list, it´s still early days and I will be getting round to everybody. If you swing your eyes to the right you will see the “clutter friends” list – check em out for more great twitter people. Next week I will be giving you a handful of suggestions from the fairer gender – yes, girls or rather ladies! You definitely don´t want to miss that so grab a feed or follow me on twitter, even better do both. I would also appreciate you sharing this post using the sexy pop-up thingies below.
“We don’t stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing.”
George Bernard Shaw
OWN:G is finally online! w00t!
We are proud (and relieved) to announce the launch of one of the core OWN INDUSTRIES websites, namely our showcase of graphic and design work – OWN:G – which as of now is live online. We would like to take the time here to give you a few insights into the thinking and doing that has gone into OWN:G – if you prefer you can just go straight there and skip the rest – it would however be great if you came back and left us a comment with your impressions, critique or feedback.
We have been working on OWN:G for what seems like months now, in fact it has only been a couple of weeks. The importance of OWN:G for us has meant that we have been taking the utmost care to deliver a website that (we hope) will present us and our work in the best possible light.
As with all OWN INDUSTRIES websites OWN:G is running on the mighty WordPress Platform, however OWN:G is not a “blog” in the classical sense but rather uses the powerful CMS capabilities of WordPress to publish “static” xhtml pages.
OWN:G is also our first venture into custom child themes and is based on the incredible thematic theme framework by Ian Stewart at Themeshaper. If you haven´t heard of thematic before then you should check out Ian´s excellent site, especially the great tutorials he has written on customizing thematic and WordPress.
When we are not doing our funky stuff for clients we are doing it for ourselves, OWN:G is intended to reflect the attitude and zest with which we go about our daily life-business.
We chose to execute a “minimal” design for OWN:G – the content should be in the foreground not the web design.
A neat and tidy design is of course only the front end of the user experience, great websites are about functionality, usability and being fit for the purpose. OWN:G should be a place where people will be able to do any or all of the following:
Learn about who we are, experience what we do, understand why we do it and ultimately connect with us in a context of their choosing.
How we do “Who?”
We have kept text to a minimum, “about us” is our homepage and the text is “optional” on all pages – it is not necessary to read anything to understand who we are. Those who wish to know more will connect with us either at other own websites, via the “social networkings” or directly through our contact form.
How we do “What?”
What we do is the crux of OWN:G, to this end we have developed a gallery template to present and explain our design work, again the text is optional, at the end of the day our visuals must speak for themselves. This choice was also made to ensure a consistent UX across the entire range of work, styles and disciplines.
How we do “Why”
Why is probably the hardest question to answer without sounding pithy or resorting to bullshit. At OWN:G the “Why” can probably best be answered by “looking over our shoulder” and following us on our intricate paths through the interwebs – the more you see the more you will understand. It is about where we are going and not where have we been.
How we do “With”
It doesn´t matter to us how we connect with our visitors, it´s all gravy! We will be just as happy sharing the streams with you as we would be to work with or for you. The question is not how we want to connect with you, but rather how do you want to connect with us?
So, what are you waiting for? If you have taken the time to read this far then it´s time to go and have a look at OWN:G
Some technical stuff about OWN:G
In the making of OWN:G We used and heavily abused the following plug ins:
cforms is a superpowered WordPress plugin for creating and managing all kinds of contact forms, even though it is a very powerful and complex tool cforms is absolutely user friendly for all levels of expertise.
This is the photoshop of WordPress gallery plugins. Powerful management and seamless integration of all your media types coupled with perfect adaptability to your presentation and theme. The nextGEN Gallery works “out of the box” for beginners while offering more savvy user endless tweaking possibilities.
OWN INDUSTRIES also recommend these WordPress extenders:
We are not affiliated in any form with the authors at the above links we just feel that respect and acknowledgment of their hard work is important.
Finally a big thanks and huge props go to some great twitterfriends who were kind enough to offer me their revealing insights, valued critique and lovely feedback on OWN:G. Check them out on twitter and say hi from me @countzeero
@kg-creative for his open, professional and helpful insights
@maddisondesigns for his honesty, enthusiasm and cool input
@alexheizer for his positive and warm feedback
@michelletrevino for her warm and encouraging praise
@g33kguy for his high end UI/UX expertise and huge ego boosting compliments
@standup4design for his most valued and crucial seal of approval
w00t! you guys are kickass!
If you enjoyed this post please show your appreciation by leaving us a comment or giving us some click love on the links below…