Download Gagalin here. Free for commercial use.
I came across this freebie the other day and thought I would share it, since it’s something virtually every freelance designer will encounter at some point in their career. Dealing with clients who don’t want to pay sucks, so any insight into avoiding them to begin with is welcome advice.
The free 74-page eBook (requires an email address) is available for download here.
Adobe Photoshop’s text capabilities are adequate for most users, but one area that is sorely lacking is the ability to set text in columns. It’s a royal pain when you’re mocking up a website to have to set two separate text layers and align them when you want multiple columns of text.
UberColumns to the rescue! uberColumns is a simple add-on that allows you to convert a single block of text on a layer to a specified column layout, including the ability to customize the gutter width.
- Simply use your text tool to drag a text box out and enter your text as you normally would.
- After committing the text, click the layer icon for your text so the layer is active.
- Open the Columns panel from Window>Extensions>Columns. Type the number of columns in the box on the left, and the amount of gutter space in the box on the right, and hit OK.
Your text should now be converted to columns. You will likely have to adjust the overall width by using your text tool to adjust the width of the text box. And that’s the beauty of UberColumns, you can adjust the columns simply by adjusting the text box as you normally would.
UberColumns is 100% free, and works with Adobe Photoshop CC, and CC2014. I absolutely LOVE this extension!
Sometimes you just don’t know where to start on a new project. Particularly newsletters or magazine layouts. Inspiration is everywhere, but often times having a pre-made template is a great way to start your layouts.
BestInDesignTemplates has several Adobe InDesign templates you can download and use for free, including: flyers, newsletters, catalogs, and a 20-page magazine layout. Obviously you would want to use these as a starting-point, rather than a finished design.
The very bottom of Safari’s browser window, the Status Bar, by default shows you the web address of the link your mouse is hovering over. Unfortunately this feature doesn’t always work well, and isn’t very informative. Heck, sometimes it doesn’t work at all.
Ultimate Satus Bar is a Safari extension that improves on the built-in status bar in a few ways.
First up is the fact that unlike Safari’s status bar, Ultimate Status Bar only shows up when you hover over a link, saving you around 20 pixels of screen real estate. That’s not a big deal on an iMac, but if you’re surfing on a MacBook Air it can make a big difference.
Ultimate Status Bar places a small Favicon in the corner of the site the link will take you to when possible, as well as an icon for the file type if you happen to be hovering over a downloadable link such as a PDF, TIF, ZIP, etc. And for those downloadable files, it will display the file size if it can be determined – so you can decide if you want to download the file now, or wait until later.
Perhaps the best feature is that short URLs get lengthened and displayed (see the image above). This is not only great for security reasons, but it’ll also help prevent you from getting Rick-Rolled!
Finally, you can customize the appearance of Ultimate Status Bar with the built-in themes.
Ultimate Satus Bar is free, and for the most part works extremely well. I couldn’t get it to display the Favicon for my own site, nor the download size of a ZIP file I hosted (though it was a very large file, so maybe I didn’t wait long enough). But it never failed to show me the link address, expand a short-URL, or hide the bar completely once I moved the mouse.
This is not an in-depth, step-by-step guide to becoming a freelance designer. Instead it gives you the broad strokes, with plenty of things to think about and act on.
I’m about half way through reading the 115 page PDF and I must say, there’s some really great advice in this eBook—even though the illustrations are stuck in the 80s 😉