Sometimes the design well runs dry. You need a reset. To get back to your crusty art school punk days when everyone was making weird stuff because they could and verily it was rad. Galaxy Brain is a tiny two person studio living that dream. Wine zines. A gentle cactus. A podcast. They're a chaotically benevolent treasure.
One of the great things about Figma is it’s ever-growing library of community-built plugins. Here are my current essentials:
Feather Icons by Cole Bemis is my current go-to open source icon set. This plugin gives you a handy search right in Figma so you’ll never go hunting for icons again.
Finding AutoFlow by David Zhao & Yitong Zhang was a big step towards using Figma for every step of my process. It allows you to quickly create paths between objects, and—most importantly—will redraw the paths as you move those objects around.
A11y - Color Contrast Checker by Microsoft, Ben Truelove, and Tiffany Chen is an essential. It gives you the ability to check the contrast of any text to see if it meets WCAG’s AA or AAA level compliance.
Find and Replace by Jackie Chui is exactly what it sounds like, and is critical for those last minute copy changes.
LOADMORE is a gorgeous showcase of non-traditional website design. What sets LOADMORE apart from all the rest is that all of the sites are showcased a mobile form factor. I can honestly say when reaching for interaction inspiration I typically don't research on a mobile phone, and that is a blind spot. The small form factor and tactile nature of a phone opens up lots of intersting possibilities for unique interactions.
A few years ago, I attended a CSS developer conference in New Orleans. It was a cool experience, I learned some things and got to see a new city. But at the time, it seemed every talk somehow ended the same way: container queries would solve all our woes. But it was a running joke, becuase at the time container queries were "impossible", there was no interest in implementing them from the browser vendors. A cruel joke indeed, becuase container queries seemed to solve a very real use-case on the front end. Well the jokes over, at long last container queries are becoming a real thing! This article does a great job of breaking down why and how we could use them in the near future.
As a designer at an agency it's important to keep all of your tools sharp and ready for your next project. Earlier this week I was on Designer News and came across this awesome resource full of examples with different types of UX artifacts and activities. It's not hard to Google for these things, but having a single place with a curated set of references to me is awesome. The site is also super easy to use and looks great IMO. Highly recommended for those looking to challenge themselves with something new or hone your skills in a few key areas.
Make sure to check them out on Designer News and show your support!