I wrote this article to help designers decide how to create the best hero image for their landing page to convey what the product does for its users.

You will see bad examples led by trends, how this mess came to be and learn how to do it better from leaders in our industry.

Let's start the rant.

So many influencial tech companies flouded their landing pages with cool people illustrations. It’s very tempting to feel inspired and jump on that train.

When I first saw this trend emerging (initially on tech sites and shortly after booming on dribbble) and how it can be used in favor of inclusiveness (showcasing various body types, skin color and so on) while conveying emotion that the marketing team wants me feel, it honestly left me excited. I almost went out of my way to buy an iPad Pro with the special pencil and learn how to draw people of the world in a cute way. …

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As a web professional, I want to master designing for my client’s business success.

The one and only metric to rule them all, conversion rate reveals the sucess of a website we designed.

In this world, where everything revolves around making money, a web design means creating a piece of interactive art with words and images that exists because a client wants the visitors to magically turn into paying customers.

That magic is called designing for conversion.

Let’s dive right in.

Everybody designs for conversion

Whether we like it or not, we designers are all conversion designers.

In today’s subscription-based economy, this means not only to gain a new user, but to keep him using the product. All that user experience design work as a pillar for a perfect, delightful and easy-to-use interface was commisioned in order to make the money rain. …

A bi-weekly design challenge with a twist.


Practice the craft, man!

I will be releasing the designs on my dribbble account every other Monday at 9:00 CET. Rebound with yours.

These exercises are not your average design challenge. We focus on research, interviews, prototypes, animation and all the fun stuff! Starting in September, our schedule with tasks is:

  • Sept 25, 2017: University homepage — What's your process?

Create a homepage for a fake university called Harford. Do a research on what visitors, students and teachers need most on the homepage. From that research, continue with your process in any way you want. Be an UX expert your way. Create a styleboard or a wireframe, a hi-fi homepage, or even a flexible design system. …

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Back in 2008 I worked for a small British design studio. My task was mass creation of templates. The studio heavily relied on stock photography. We had a folder of thousands of pre-downloaded images. It cost a fortune.

Yuri Arcurs got enormously rich taking stock. Maybe you remember his model, Sofie. She was everywhere! A doctor, smiling right at you. A wellness girl jumping on a beach. A serious, yet cute business woman.

In a 3rd trimester, my baby dropped very low and the doctor said I should start to "take it easy".

"In 26th week, I finally learned the importance of rest. On a hospital bed," my friend told me after I started asking around.

My condition is not extraordinary. To sum it up, I simply was so active during pregnancy (I am in my 30th week now) that I somehow managed to shake the baby down so low it might get born prematurely.

I walked long walks. I worked behind my computer for hours. I drove around every day. I took care of my husband with a broken leg. I belly-danced or stretched almost every evening. I took care of everything.

"Pregnancy is not an illness!" …

A freelancer's design process from planning to finished site.

Let's embrace user personas, continual testing and making the client feel a part of the process!

  1. Planning
  2. Creating: Prototyping, Designing, Testing, Prototyping, Designing, …
  3. Development
  4. More Testing

1. Planning

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Get to know them

Brand exploration, customer profiling, getting to know users

  • Gathering brand stuff: logo, stationery, presentations, …
  • Meeting or videochat with the client, getting to know them
  • Visit to their office, immersing in their world
  • Who are their users, their customers? Looking at client's social media / site stats / physical store to find out.
  • Creating personas. We create for THEM.
  • Commissioning a photoshoot in client's premises, showing them doing their work — having the right photography is of utmost importance! It has to be fresh, energetic, not static against a background, and consistent in style. It should also tell a story about a client. …


Darinka Kostelnik

Web designer of 10+ years. Mommy and wife, pool dancer and pole player. Envato Elite author. Appeared in net magazine. Passionate about all things web.

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