15 top Houdini tips

3D software Houdini from Toronto-based firm SideFX utilises a node-based, procedural approach to provide digital artists with a remarkable level of power, flexibility and control. It’s some of the best 3D modelling software around.  While many Houdini users utilise the software to carry out very specific tasks for their 3D art, it has a highly extensive toolset and capabilities – and in recent times has become more artist friendly. So now’s the time to jump right in.  Whether you’re completely new to Houdini or just want to hone your skills on its many features, going back to basics is a ... Read More

9 embarrassing branding blunders

Nobody's perfect. Design fails happen all the time – even the most thorough creative director is allowed to trip once in a while. The most important part is how you get back up again. Recognise your mistakes, don't be afraid to embrace your human side, engage in the conversation, and – if you can – try to turn it around into a positive. Remember that consumers aren't necessarily looking for perfection; rather, for honesty and decency. When brands don't break trust by trying to be deceitful or hurtful, most of us are willing to laugh, forgive and forget.  Here are ... Read More

10 illustration books every artist should read

If you're looking for the best illustration books, you're in the right place. Whether you're a beginner or more established artist, we've rounded up 10 must-read books for illustrators in this essential list.  These books don't just explore how to draw. You'll also find titles that give an overview of the history of illustration; instructional books to help you master the fundamentals of the craft; and books that'll help when you're struggling for inspiration. Whether you're a hobbyist, art student, freelancer or a studio professional, every book here is essential reading.  Read on for our 10 must-read illustration books.  01 ... Read More

The 10 best 3D movies of 2018

2018 looks set to be a massive year for film – and 3D movies in particular. With long-awaited sequels and thrilling adaptations in the pipeline, now might just be the time to renew your cinema subscription. Because if you're going to see a film laced with CGI – to fully appreciate the show-stopping 3D art – it's got to be on the big screen, right? Here's the best of what's yet to come this year... 01. Rampage Yes, it’s based on a not terribly interesting video game, and yes it stars The Rock, but who doesn’t want to see three ... Read More

Be a project management pro with this bundle

Some people just know how to get things done. If you want to be that person, you need to grab the Project Management Professional Certification Training Bundle. You can get it on sale now for 98 per cent off the retail price. Dive into the 10 in-depth courses of the Project Management Professional Certification Training Bundle. You'll quickly find everything you need to prove your skills as a project manager and to make sure you’re learning all the skills you need for this career. It will provide you with over 110 hours of knowledge about project management. This bundle is ... Read More

How to influence Google rankings with your content

Your content is going nowhere unless people can search for and find it, so content should be written with an understanding of factors such as SEO and aimed at the right audience groups. The steps below will highlight how to drive more traffic to your site, building a connection between your brand and your audience.  By the time you have finished reading this tutorial you will have a better understanding of how you can ultimately improve your rankings amongst the competition, boost your visibility and capitalise on the right audience through your content.  01. Get organised  Google Calendar is a ... Read More

Start your design career with this training bundle

How many times have you thought about the things you wished you learned earlier in life? Here’s your chance to stop thinking about it and start doing it. The eduCBA Design and Multimedia Lifetime Subscription Bundle has the courses you need to pick up new skills, and you can get a lifetime subscription on sale now for 97 per cent off. When you login to eduCBA Design and Multimedia Lifetime Subscription Bundle, you’ll find hundreds of courses with actionable lessons waiting for you – and new ones are being added all the time. You’ll have unlimited access to more than ... Read More

40 brilliant WordPress tutorials

High-quality WordPress tutorials are being published all the time. Here, we've sifted through the good, the bad and the ugly to bring you the very best WordPress tutorials to hit the web. You’ll find beginner WordPress tutorials on this page, intermediate WordPress tutorials on page two, and advanced WordPress tutorials on page three. Since its launch in 2003, WordPress has quickly risen to become the world's most-used content management system. This enduring popularity is partly due to the enthusiastic community surrounding the open source system. It's highly customisable, very easy to use and it's completely free, making it an obvious ... Read More

The 14 best websites to download stock art

As a designer, you’ll often have a great concept for a project, but the cost of commissioning an illustrator will be beyond the project's budget. You could always put your creative skills to the test with some Illustrator tutorials and vector art tutorials. Or you could save yourself a lot of time and effort, and opt to use stock art from one of these great stock websites. The good news is that these days online stock art sites are no longer limited to a handful of tired cliches. Instead, they feature a huge and eclectic variety of illustrations in various ... Read More

Do you really need an agent?

At the AOI, many of our members are represented by agencies. But we also have many who aren't, as well as agent members, who abide by our ethical code of conduct and work hard to secure a richer industry through a great plethora of talent.  Many illustrators ask us: is it essential to have an agent to be successful? To answer this question, we sought the insight of two AOI members who are currently thriving in their careers – both with and without agents. The benefits of having an agent Casper Franken of multi-award-winning studio Shotopop (represented by Bernstein & Andriulli, Valérie ... Read More

How a simple pinned tweet can win you new work

Knowing how to use social media is a skill in itself. For some, Twitter is a place to call out brands that have let them down, cut jokes or debate about the latest news. But used professionally, the social media platform can be a highly efficient way to land new work. One creative who's done exactly that is oil painter, writer and lecturer Cat Graffam. Earlier this week, she revealed that she's secured multiple gigs through Twitter – and all it took was a snappy, informative tweet pinned to the top of her profile. See her tips for creating a ... Read More

9 of the best graphic design books to read in 2018

With so many new graphic design books published all the time, it can be tough to know which ones you need on your bookshelf – and which ones probably aren't worth your precious cash. So we've done the hard work for you. Whether you're after a present for yourself or a graphic designer friend, or simply want to bulk up your studio bookshelf, here are the 10 of the best graphic design books to read this year. 01. Paula Scher: Works Editors: Tony Brook & Adrian Shaughnessy Price: £55 Dubbed the most influential female graphic designer on the planet, Paula ... Read More

Introduction to Drone Photography and Video (Fish Creek, WI)

Introduction to Drone Photography and Video (Fish Creek, WI)
Drones allow unique views for capturing photos and video, closing the gap between how high you can climb on a ladder and how low a helicopter can fly. In addition to traditional photography, there are ... Read More

Learn the art of web design with this bundle

The web is an exciting place, with new developments happening all the time. You can get in on the action by picking up the skills you need to become a web designer with the Learn to Web Design Bundle. This incredible course bundle is on sale now for a price you choose. No matter what area of web design you're interested in, the Learn to Web Design Bundle is packed with the know-how you need to become a talented developer with the skills to succeed. It has more than 75 hours of actionable content, all spread across nine professionally taught ... Read More

Create liquid effects with WebGL

Many web designers look for ways to add a big impact to their site designs, so that they'll grab the attention of their users. Methods have evolved over the years, from using a header graphic, to placing a slideshow under the landing page menu, to becoming full browser width – and now the vast majority of sites follow this same format.  Today, the designs that win 'site of the day' on different web awards sites generally try and do something that's a little more unique than just having a giant slideshow and some parallax scrolling.  WebGL is great for this ... Read More

Build the next killer app with this course bundle

Whether on web or mobile, apps make the world go around. These powerful tools have become ingrained in our lives thanks to the incredible functionality they provide. Now you can learn to build apps that people will be sure to love with the Complete Application Development Bundle. Get it on sale now for 89 per cent off the retail price! Even the most simple app looks more complicated when you crack open the hood. With the Complete Application Development Bundle, you'll learn to understand the inner workings of applications. With more than 35 hours of in-depth content about app development, ... Read More

4 essential image optimisation tips

A few lucky developers and this author had the opportunity to tech edit Addy Osmani's new image optimisation eBook, Essential Image Optimization, which you absolutely should read. Whether you're building full-size eCommerce websites or simply making an online home for your design portfolio, in this article you'll learn a few tips from Addy's book that will help make your images leaner and faster. Be selective and preload critical images Take a look at your site and identify a critical image asset. For most, this would be a logo or hero image that you want to have render as soon as ... Read More

Become a web developer with this bundle

Web development is a rapidly growing field, and there's still plenty of room for you to get your start in this profession. You just need the right skills. Dive head-first into the field with the Complete Web Developer Course 2.0 and you'll pick up the talents you need in no time. It's on sale now for just $25 (approx. £18). The Complete Web Development Course 2.0 is the perfect opportunity to pick up the web development skills that you've always wanted to have.  No matter your skill level, this professionally taught course will help you learn the fundamentals of web ... Read More