Tools For The Graphically Challenged

I’m finally adding my work to my portfolio. Which poses a problem because I am a writer, not a designer. I mean, I could take crappy screenshots, but I would like it to look more professional than that. And some pieces need mockups because I either no longer have or never got the originals.

I have graphic designer friends who are willing to help me out, but I am not big on asking for favors. And anyway, I’ll save them for the stuff I really can’t manage on my own.

Pixelmator

I love Pixelmator. This sweet app can handle almost any design-thing the average web designer needs to do on a site. I find a reason to use it every day. You can buy and learn Adobe products (and pull your hair out). Or you can be up and running with this app in 5 minutes for $29.99. Use it to resize and correct your original images and create icons.

Mockup Everything

Mockup Everything costs $12 a month. Basically, it is a super easy way to place your screenshots and other images on devices, clothing, and packaging. The range of print materials is skimpy and so are the packaging choices. Nonetheless, it is incredibly easy and you don’t even have to get the correct screen ratios down when you take your screenshots. I use it to place screenshots in devices. Here is my logo on a tee-shirt.

Placeit

I think for the money I like Mockup Everything better. But Place It offers stuff in context, like billboards in the city. It also has a unique feature which records your scrolls or swipes and turns it into a moving image within a device. Very cool. I don’t care for the backgrounds, because I prefer white or transparent. But if you want to show off to a client, Placeit might be a good choice. I wound up spending $190 for approx. 30 HD downloards. Like I said, not cheap. Here is an example of a dynamic web image pulled from the URL. Obviously, if the URL link breaks it won’t work.

Go ahead and scroll the screen. Magic. *If you subscribe, the Place It branding disappears. {eek, it broke,)