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Design

Philosophy of Frugal Living

Perhaps it was the “He who dies with the most toys wins” bumper stickers that gave us the idea that living frugally equals being miserable. Because of that misconception, a lot of people who are either in financial difficulty or wanting to achieve certain financial goals are looking at everything but economizing as a way to achieve it.

In my opinion, living frugally equates more accurately with success, satisfaction, freedom and creativity. If this attitude underlies your spending philosophy, you will find economy to be an effortless lifestyle. Let’s look at the main component of the frugal living philosophy to see if this is something you could consider for yourself.

Main Component of Frugality

nick byrd1 Philosophy of Frugal Living

Many people have a knee–jerk reaction to any form of economizing, erroneously believing that all this austerity will mean years and years of subsistence living in return for incredibly small improvements in our lives.

Our friends will look down on us or even worse, pity us. We’ll never go to the beach or drive anything more than a sub-compact relic. It would be far easier and much quicker to take out a loan or get a second job.

But with careful attention to our spending, we can have our friends admire, if not envy us; have several beach vacations each year; and drive a late model car; all with out the burden of an extra loan repayment or the time crunch of a second job.

So for starters, understand that living frugally is all about getting more, not having less.

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Design

70 Minimal Geometric Compositions by Tilman Zitzmann

Geometry Daily is a Tumblr blog that publishes beautiful geometric compositions. The man behind this awesome blog is Tilman Zitzmann. Tilman is a graphic designer living, working, and teaching in Nuremberg, Germany. Although they look like real paper prints, every design is created digitally with vector software.

These days our lives are full of noise and complex dependencies. Because of this, many intelligent designers strive for simplicity. I think Tilman’s minimal illustrations are a great source of inspiration for designers. Seeing the beautiful shapes, curves, and lines allows you to think different in terms of aesthetics. I’m very glad I found this blog and hope you’ll feel the same.

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minimal geometric compositions 661 70 Minimal Geometric Compositions by Tilman Zitzmann

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Fun Yeah!

The Joys and Challenges of Working from Home

Not everyone is given the opportunity to work from the comforts of their own home, and I am very fortunate to be able to do so. This gives me the chance to not only avoid the daily commute associated with working in an office (and to take a break any time I want), but it also gives me the opportunity to spend more time with my two kids. Now, who wouldn’t want to be in a situation like that?

As ideal as this may sound, (and it is, mind you) it does have a few drawbacks. One of the problems you will find yourself facing when you are taking on a telecommuting job is the one where you procrastinate. You often tell yourself that you will finish your work later, and then later becomes tomorrow, and tomorrow soon becomes three days later. When that happens, you find yourself with a mountain of work that you need to catch up on, which then results in sleepless nights trying to finish what should have been finished days ago, which then translates to unhealthy snacking habits and weight gain and grumpy days and…I can go on and on.

tumblr mjmh45pq2v1qkegsbo1 128011 The Joys and Challenges of Working from Home

This can actually be avoided, and I found a way to help keep myself from procrastinating and putting off for tomorrow what can be done (and should be done) today. When I get up, and am scheduled to do some writing for the sites I am handling, I jump in the shower, get dressed and prepare, as if I was going to the office. No, I do not dress in a suit. I simply get out of my pajamas and dress like I was going out to the mall or some other place outside my home.

Another method that helps me stick to what needs to be done is to create a calendar of tasks to do and to follow that calendar as best as I possibly can. There will be days when I will miss writing one or two articles due to family emergencies and such, but as much as possible, this schedule has to be adhered to, or else huge backlogs are inevitable.

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Design

33 Classy Thick Edge Business Cards

Business cards are not dead. Having a beautifully designed business card will increase its lifespan. I’ve said it many times before, and I’ll say it again: If I ever receive a halfassed business card, it’s ending up in the trash. People have good taste, even if you’re not supposed to judge a book by it’s cover, most people do. So get used to it.

Giving out a business card is like throwing a boomerang. The only difference is that people who try to cut corners and be average won’t get any replies back. Today we collected thirty-three classy business cards that would most definitely get a call or an email back. They’re well designed and would make me feel bad if I was to throw any of them away.

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Art

Trash to Treasure: 40 Creative Recycled and Repurposed Artworks

As the saying goes, “one man’s trash is another man’s treasure.” The talented artists, behind the works you’re about to see, view the world differently. They see incredible possibility in the junk we blindly throw away on a daily basis. Not only do they contribute art for us, but to the world itself. Thanks to the integration of recyclable items, their artwork actually spares items that would end up in the landfill.

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Design

40 Creative Party and Club Flyers

Digital or physical, flyers are an important promotional element for your entertainment venue. Letting people know about an upcoming event is essential. Having low attendance and selling less tickets will hurt your bottom line, so being stingy on advertising is never a good idea. Flyer printing isn’t very expensive either. You can get 1,000 full color (front & back) 4″ x 6″ flyers for about $85.

Designing flyers can be a challenging task. If I receive a half-assed flyer, I will throw it in the trash right away. Today we’ve compiled some amazing and well-designed flyers for your inspiration. The following examples will give you an idea of what attractive and effective flyers look like.

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Design

60 Professional Examples of Stationery Design

Since the Victorian era, stationery has been an important part of proper social etiquette. Stationery design usually consists of paper, office supplies, letterheads, writing equipment, business cards, cases, and other similar items. The entire goal is to have beautiful branding throughout the company.

Every business owner understands that personalized communication emphasizes your professionalism. Showing your customers and clients how far you’re willing to go to stand out, will put a huge smile on their face.

I’m also constantly impressed with companies fashionably carrying out branding across their entire digital presence. By now, you should understand that Internet is the virtual counterpart of your business. Overlooking your self image will hurt you in the long run.

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Photos

Studio Lighting Techniques you Really Need to Know

With any type of photography, the lighting techniques you use will greatly affect the way your work looks, as will the choice of props you decide to use. Below are some lighting principles I abide by when carrying out photography in my studio and will also refer to a selection of props I can’t go without. Don’t forget, the techniques you adopt should vary according to the type of your shoot, the client and style you’re aiming for.

Continuous or flash?

Firstly you need to decide which type of lighting source is best suited to your shoot’s purpose. The continuous option is relatively inexpensive and great for those starting out in studio photography. As the name suggests, it is a continuous source of light which will help find where the shadows and highlights will be throughout the shoot, and is a good option for still life photography. However, do bear in mind that this type of equipment emits a lot of heat, which isn’t ideal if you’re shooting portrait or fashion. Flash equipment puts more control in the photographer’s hands, allowing you to adjust your shots to create the desired style.

Photographing newborns and children

studio lighting techniques1 Studio Lighting Techniques you Really Need to Know

As mentioned earlier, continuous lighting can be a problem if you’re working with people – the constant heat from the equipment is likely to irritate your subjects. With delicate little babies, this is especially a concern. If your studio allows for natural lighting, take advantage of that. If not, use soft continuous lighting.

With older children I recommend using a combination of flash and continuous. Attach a softbox in front of the child to make their face even rounder and the catch lights in their eyes stand out. To completely eliminate harsh shadows and create even lighting I recommend fixing a large softbox – a 32”x40” usually works well. This simple but effective setup results in really vibrant colors and suits the feel of this type of shoot.

Portrait photography

Portrait shoots require an altogether different approach. Quite often you will work with clients who are out of their comfort zone when in a photography studio. So it’s up to you to manipulate lighting levels so that the client not only feels comfortable, but is amazed with the end results. Taking pregnancy photography as an example, use soft, flattering lighting to emphasize the curve of the client’s bump whilst minimizing areas that might want a little less attention after 9 months of pregnancy.

A distinct style of shot which is especially popular in portrait is the silhouette photo. To create this look, place strong lighting directly behind the person and bring in a soft second light from the front if you want to bring their face out of darkness.

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Fun Yeah!

25 Wise Quotes From George Carlin

George Carlin is a Grammy-winning American stand-up comedian, actor, and author. Being considered as one of the top comedians of all time, George is well known for his black humor, political views, observations on language, psychology, and religion along with many other taboo subjects. His critical thinking shines on stage and opens your eyes to modern-day problems that most folks are oblivious to. The following quotes are some of the most thought provoking sentences you’ll ever read.

wise quotes from george carlin 11 25 Wise Quotes From George Carlin

wise quotes from george carlin 31 25 Wise Quotes From George Carlin

wise quotes from george carlin 41 25 Wise Quotes From George Carlin

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Design

55 Creative Bottle Cap Designs

Bottle caps are an essential part of every bottled beverage. The market is filled with numerous breweries and distinctive beers. If you’re a brewer, overlooking this part of the packaging design isn’t an option. Right before a customer pops the cap off, you should have some sort of visible branding presented to them. This will add an extra touch to your product and show how much you care about your craft.

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Design

35 Examples of Beautiful Sign Designs

As a business owner, having an elegant sign will spark the consumer’s interest, lead them inside the store, and possibly turn them into a frequent customer. For your inspiration we collected some beautiful examples of signs that’ll catch your attention.

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Photos

30 Elevating Photos of Mountains

This Earth is filled with stunning landscapes. There’s nothing as breathtaking as gazing your eyes upon a beautiful mountain. Mother Nature’s tectonic forces create these stunning land-forms and you have the privilege to enjoy them. I’m very grateful for talented photographers who provide you with an emotional experience. While looking through these images I want you to imagine that you’re there, that way you’ll really appreciate the priceless beauty presented to you. The best things in life really are free. So grab a fresh cup of coffee and immerse yourself with enjoyment!

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Art

20 Dirty Car Artworks by Scott Wade

Living on a long dirt road for over 20 years, Scott Wade developed a method for creating detailed and shaded pieces of art in the dust of dirty car windows. From an after-work hobby, Dirty Car Art has become a way of life, with opportunities to share this work in the international media, at fairs and festivals, for corporate events, and PR and ad campaigns throughout the world. His work has been featured on the History Channel’s Modern Marvels, The CBS Early Show, CMT’s Country Fried Videos, and on many other national and regional television shows, as well as several in Japan, Germany, Brazil, South Korea, and Mexico. Enjoy!

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Design

35 Nice Examples of Flat Web Design

What is Flat Design? As Sabina Idler at Usabilla puts it, “flat design is a two dimensional design for a two dimensional screen.” Flat Design is an ongoing trend sweeping the design community. Well-known companies like Mashable, TheNextWeb, and Microsoft are already utilizing this design aesthetic.

Similar to Microsoft’s Windows 8 Metro UI, flat design shakes off unappealing drop shadows, inset shadows, gradients, subtle textures, and heavy bevels. It takes a fundamentally minimalistic approach by only using bare necessities like clean layouts, solid colors, and sharp typography. Holding hands with responsive web design, flat UI design is suited for mobile interfaces and is easier to code.

Skeuomorphic design is meant to look like its physical counterpart and possess real life characteristics. Thanks to Apple, the popularity of skeuomorphic design boomed since the launch of the iPhone in 2007. To find a common ground with users, designers got used to designing skeuomorphic user interfaces, icons, and web designs. The stitched-leather effect seen in many Apple-designed iOS apps is a good example of skeuomorphic design.

Into the Arctic | Greenpeace

into the artic111 35 Nice Examples of Flat Web Design

2012 Year on Twitter

2012 year on twitter113 35 Nice Examples of Flat Web Design

The Best of Kickstarter 2012

the best of kickstarter11 35 Nice Examples of Flat Web Design

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Fun Yeah!

Achieve Your Goals: 7 Golden Rules Of Goal Setting

Setting goals in your life and in your career can be very powerful and very effective. Writing them down will increase your ability to meet them.

In 1979 the MBA programme graduating class at Harvard University were asked,

‘Have you set clear, written goals for your future and made plans to accomplish them?’

Ten years later this class was tracked to see how much they were earning. They were split into three groups.

Group A which represented 84% of the class had set no goals at all

Group B and 13% of the group, had set themselves goals but not written them down, ten years later were earning TWICE as much as group A.

Group C which equalled just 3% of the group had set written goals and were earning TEN TIMES as much as both groups A & B put together!

In this article we share some of the golden rules for setting goals for yourself, that have been gathered from successful goal setters from around the globe.

setting smart goals11 Achieve Your Goals: 7 Golden Rules Of Goal Setting

1. Be Careful What You Wish For!

We need to be very specific about what we actually want in all areas of our life. For example it might be great to earn heap loads of money and have a great career but are we sacrificing other areas in our life. This might include not seeing your children grow up because you are working long hours or you don’t reserve enough time for your partner or hobby.

It pays to make a list of all the important areas that are important in your life and be very specific about what you want and need.

2. Make Sure You Will Know When You’ve Arrived

How will you know when you’ve arrived at your goal? How will you judge that you have reached your desired outcome? What will it look like, what will you hear and what will it feel like? If we don’t do this it’s difficult to say we’ve done it. We need this to gain that sense of achievement and satisfaction that reaching the goal gives us.

3. Give Yourself A Stretch

We often gain the highest amount of satisfaction when we achieve a goal that requires some effort on our part. Many dreams are like this and it will depend on each individual whether it is stretching enough.

4. Check That It Meets Your Internal Values

Sometimes in our rush to meet our goal we put ourselves in situations that go against our values as a person. For example we might work for someone who has different values and we are expected to comply with those. If you have ever found yourself in this place, you will know that after a while it becomes so uncomfortable that you have to leave. So before you say yes do what you can to see whether your values are aligned.

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