Exciting New Tools for Designers, March 2020
Spring is in the air. As the season changes, many designers are looking for a little refresh of their own. Hopefully some of these new tools and resources will do the trick. Here’s what new for designers this month.
allows you to quickly create and share content with tools to build presentations, infographics, documents, videos, and graphics — with little to no design skills. But it’s for designers too with features that you will appreciate in a platform that makes crafting visuals quick and easy. (It’s great for creating social media graphics, in particular!) The new release is intuitive and allows you to work with video or still images, illustrations, text, maps, and more. You can even set branding guidelines so your team can work from the free app.
Thinkers Notebook and App
The Thinkers Notebook and App brings your paper sketches to the digital space. The notebook and app work together to turn things on the page into high-res digital images that you can share, add notes to, edit and more. The best feature is the ability to collaborate and comment on handwritten notes or ideas. If you still like to use paper and pen to start the ideation process this tool is for you. (The app is free and the notebook is under $20.)
Looking for an alternative to a certain app? Opensource Builders is a collection of open-source tools with similar functionality.
will remove the background of videos automatically. You can record footage anywhere – even without a green screen – and use the tool to scrub the background to an invisible layer and then add your own background element. The tool is free and also includes a pro version (coming soon) with more features.
is designed for students taking online courses. The tool allows you to efficiently capture notes while watching video lectures with the browser extension. Then use the site to revise and study for exams. The best part? You don’t have to try to decipher your handwriting later.
can help you save time searching for icons on your computer. The tool is a free SVG icon organizer that works on Mac and Windows operating systems. It features a drag and drop interface and can be sync for team use. You can even create and publish your own icons sets and find everything using a super-fast search tool.
is a draggable and resizable grid layout with responsive breakpoints. And you guessed it, this tool is for Svelte.
Masked and Layered Linear Gradients
Here’s a pen you’ll want to play with. Masked and Layered Linear Gradients is a neat look behind the curtain of how a cool background gradient swatch comes together.
is a generator to create the CSS for the soft UI style that seems to be popping up everywhere. Change the colors, size, and more to get just the design you are looking for in the neumorphic style.
Glitch Art GeneratorGlitch Art Generator
helps you create a glitch background effect and download the file once you get it right. Adjust colors, number of glitches, location, direction, and corner effects.
Android Phone Mockups
If you are looking for an Android phone mockup, you’re in luck. This set includes eight mockup templates so you can showcase designs in a realistic environment.
is a free MIT-licensed set of SVG icons for web projects. The set includes two styles – outline and solid – with 140 icons each.
is a color palette generator that uses machine learning to generate color combinations based on a search term. Each query – such as winter or sunset – returns four themes with five palettes each. You can also pull palettes from images. Every palette comes with downloadable color codes.
is a URL shortner that allows you to create branded short links and track everything in an analytics dashboard. It also includes a browser toolbar shortcut for super-fast link shortening.
Care Bear Needs LoveCare Bear Needs Love
is just a fun little project by Jhey. Click the mouse to start (We won’t spoil the surprise; you should go visit for yourself.)
Create Diagonal Layouts
Did you know you can build diagonal layouts with CSS? This tutorial by Nils Binder includes markup and tips to make easy work of something that looks cool and complicated.
Stacking Cards EffectThis tutorial
takes your through creating a trendy stacking cards effect using the CSS sticky position and the Intersection Observer API. It includes a demo and downloads to make the most of this simple lesson.
Signup Form Generator
Use visual tools to create a sign-up form in three steps and for free. Choose the template you like, fill in the fields, select a color. Download the form and its Angular code, or customize it in UI Bakery.
lets your turn your website (or concept design) into a canvas for feedback and collaboration. Real-time commenting can help you get projects done faster and know exactly what pain points there might be with the design. You can have an unlimited number of projects, collaborators, and comments for free.
Airtable Scripting BlockAirable
users will appreciate this — a new scripting block that allows you to write, edit, and run short scripts right inside the tool. Plus, it’s all hosted within Airtable.
Boring Sans BBoring Sans B
(there’s also an A) is a typeface family designed along two variable axes, weight and weirdness. These parameters allow designers to explore a full range of variations on sans serif design, starting from a neutral set of proportions and evolving to a strongly contrasted and dynamic treatment.
Deep ShadowDeep Shadow
is a slab typeface that creates the expected effect from its name. It uses layering to create the effect and does have some instructions for use.
Holla HearthHolla Hearth
is an elegant brush script that makes a beautiful display typeface. The demo is somewhat limited, but a full version of the typeface is available.
Manti SlabManti Slab
is a good choice if you want to make a statement with typography. Regular, Light, and Black weights are highly readable. The demo includes a limited character set and there is a full version available.
combines unexpected things: Ligatures and a stencil style. The characters are interesting and have a lot of character.
Street PhotographyStreet Photography
is a typeface with a handwriting style that is easy to use. It includes upper and lowercase characters but is otherwise limited.