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5 Great Design Tools

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In the words of Forrest Gump, design tools are "like a box of chocolates, you never know what you're gonna get." Great design tools are hard to come by. So, I've selected a few of my personal favourites and posted them below. Tried, true and tested. Enjoy!
 

1. shortcuts.design

Shortcuts.design is exactly what it says on the box, "every shortcut for designers in one place". I am constantly referring to this website to learn new hot keys that save me time and effort. It also doesn't hurt that this website is simple, elegant and free!
 

2. Smallpdf

Ever tried to send a PDF to a client only to have it bounce back because their email client has some ridiculously small attachment size limit (yeah me neither)? Smallpdf is a free, quick, and painless PDF compression tool that doesn't l hide away in a setting menu or ask dumb questions, *cough* Adobe Acrobat. The website has a number of other tools on offer but the compression tool is the one I frequent the most.
 

3. FontBase

Apple's Font Book isn't bad, but it isn't very good either. If you are into typography and use different font pairings across multiple projects on the regular, then FontBase is the tool for you. It's free, easy to use, plays nice with most design programs and makes organising your font collections a whole lot more manageable.
 

4. Let's Enhance

Unfortunately for creatives, eye-twitchingly bad, low quality images is something we have to deal with on the regular. Thankfully, there may finally be a solution (sort of). Let's Enhance is a free online tool that uses artificial intelligence to enhance low-resolution images. When this tool works, it really does seem like some kind of sorcery. As expected though, there is a bit of trial and error. It won't work for every image. Images occasionally look as though they have been weirdly smudged or smoothed. Nevertheless, this is a tool I have been using more and more often to save presentations, project summaries and old portfolio work.
 

5. Coolors

Finding the right colours for each project can often be more difficult and more time consuming than we would like. Last, but not least, Coolors is a big, beautiful and free online colour scheme generator that uses an algorithm to randomly generate elegant, well-balanced colour palettes at the press of a button (no seriously, you just hit space-bar!). Lock-in specific colours whilst continuing to explore different combinations, fine-tune colours to your liking and easily copy-and-paste hex codes into the creative software of your choosing. It's that simple.

 

That's all folks

Hope you enjoyed this article, more to come in the near future. Let me know your thoughts in the comments section below. What are some of your go-to design tools?