Meet PinchStudio: designer and small business owner

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This week, we’re hoping that hundreds of small businesses around the United States will be posting this awesome illustration by PinchStudio in their real or virtual storefronts: PinchStudio’s poster/social media banner illustration for National Small Business Week Most of the folks who run contests on 99designs are small business owners (and many designers are, too), […]

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How to collaborate with a designer on 1-to-1 projects

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One of the best outcomes of running a contest is finding an awesome designer who you’ll be able to turn to for all of your future projects. We just so happen to have a 1-to-1 projects platform to help you collaborate in just this manner. The results tend to be glorious – especially if you […]

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15 descriptive design words you should know

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Designers tend to pride themselves on being “visually oriented” — and rightly so. That need not mean that you can’t describe your wishes, however. Being able to verbally describe your work to a designer throughout the feedback process is an indispensable skill. Here we’ve come up with fifteen very useful, high-level design words that any […]

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4 design predictions for 2014

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Boy, was 2013 a fun year for branding nerds. From art museums to operating systems, we saw some truly bold and risky design moves – some of which paid off, others of which crashed and burned at an epic scale. Looking at the trends that gained traction in 2013 also gives us an idea of […]

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Who wore it better? The branding trends of 2013

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Another year gone by, another opportunity to examine the branding trends that surfaced — and, more fun, to point out who re-branded gracefully and who botched it. We have picked out 10 salient trends from 2013, ranging from location branding to adaptive design, and put together a series of “who wore it better” comparisons. (Yes, […]

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Neon and gold: signage trends beyond the screen

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Think about the storefronts of a 20th century metropolis or a 19th century frontier main street, and even if you’re a branding fanatic like us, it’s probably not a sea of typefaces that comes to mind – rather, it is the physical presence of the signage, whether in steel, paint or light. Just have a […]

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Google has a new birthday suit

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What’s chock full of primary colors and distinctively beveled? Not Google’s logo – at least it may not be anymore. In conjunction with its fifteenth anniversary (happy birthday, by the way; we know you’re listening), the search engine giant has been trickling out a modified version of its prior design. This new one has more […]

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10 infographic tips for small business owners: How to make infographics people will remember

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You’ve probably heard quite a bit about infographics over the past year. The phenomenon exploded in 2012 and shows no sign of waning any time soon. Businesses small and large, tech-savvy and traditional, are realizing that the infographic is an unbeatable way to communicate internally as well as market to existing and potential customers. In […]

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How to run a great 99designs contest: candid tips and insights from customers

Running a design contest ought to be as fun as it is productive. It is also, however, a fair amount of work, requiring strong vision and management. And as the crowdsourcing model of service isn’t exactly a familiar mode of operation for many small businesses, it can prove challenging in rather unexpected ways. We’re always […]

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A client-designer Bear Hug for Valentine’s Day

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We’re in good spirits this Valentine’s Day, having received a special Valentine’s gram (video below) from App Village, a client currently in the business of bear hugs. But the real recipient of this thank-you is Zaaviart, the designer in our community whose awesome illustration work won him the contest that App Village ran on our site. What they needed were […]

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