Richard Tabor founded PurtyPixels.com and has been generous enough to post several free goods on our Free Goods page! Above is just one example of what you can get. Let's talk to Richard a bit more about his process:
First of all, why don't you tell everyone a bit about yourself, where you are from and what you do.
Well, I'm a guy mostly from the Southern part of the United States. As a brief rundown about myself: I grew up here and there, went to college at North Georgia College & State University, joined the Army National Guard, graduated with a degree in Business Marketing, commissioned into the Georgia Guard as a Second Leutinent, started PurtyPixels.com, started making WordPress Themes, and moved up to New York City to work as a UI Designer with Saavn.
How did you start out in the field of design?
In college I used to do flyers for various student organizations and it eventually led into branding/logo design, which then bled into websites (as clients would ask for future work). It all happened quite fast (a little over a year ago to be exact). After working as a web designer for a marketing firm I decided to challenge my abilities and create "freebies" at my website PurtyPixels.com in order to get my name out there and contribute to the ever growing design community. Constructing freebies on PurtyPixels opened up a whole new world of opportunities.
What are your favorite fonts to use right now?
I typically love Bree Serif, which is a classy, yet quite fun, type of font. It's a Google font as well, so it's really easy to implement wherever I need it. Other favorite fonts include Novecento Wide, Billabong, Mensch and naturally Helvetica. Though the first three are more "presentation" type fonts, not utility-esque.
What is your design process?
I almost always hit pen on paper first. It gives me an opportunity to see my "vision" in front of me, work through potential foreseen problems and "test the waters" with my idea. After that I hit photoshop for a bit and lay out a clear wireframe. Then I'll duplicate the wireframe and play with different versions and mix/match them until I create something I like. Sometimes that takes hours, other times it takes days/weeks; that saying, taking your time is imperative to success. After I'm pleased with what I have, I push it into the development stage.
When feeling stumped, where do you turn to for design inspiration?
I usually take a quick break, listen to new music and check out twitter for a few minutes. If that doesn't work I'll take a walk and think it over a bit. Usually after a break it comes to me. If not, I'll set it down and switch to a different project for the time being. 80% of the time a designer just needs to let it sink in.
What advice would you give to a designer who is just starting out?
Don't rush it. It's important to get your name out there but don't sacrifice quality in your work, just to speed things up and get a check so you can move on to the next client. It's awfully important in your own ventures as well. Secondly, make sure your work is near perfect, with every single element in the design serving a fulfilling purpose. Lastly, embrace social media, but don't become spammers. :)