Dreamweaver: Tips and Tricks!

Over the past couple of weeks, I have spent some time in Adobe’s Dreamweaver crafting my first websites.

It has certainly been a crazy learning experience!  This program can do so much and I am quite sure there is no way that any person could learn everything it can do in a classroom setting — I think it’s all about trial and error and working on your own to truly find out what this program can do.

I have put together a list of some (what I find to be) helpful tips and tricks that I have discovered: whether it be by accident, through my reading of design blogs online, as well as reading of my textbook.

 

  1. This one is simple: make sure that the “view” you are working with is “Live View”.  This window will split the Dreamweaver screen into two parts — one will be the window that you type the code into, and the other screen will show you what your website will look like!  Very cool feature and is a must-use.
  2. Live View’s best friend; Live Code.  This feature will update your code automatically as you click, drag & drop, and interact with the elements in the Live View window.  Love this one!
  3. Just another reason to just bite the bullet and pay the money for Creative Cloud:  all of the typefaces that we have access to with Dreamweaver!  The great thing about this is that there are so many options, and as a member of Creative Cloud, we can use the fonts and not worry about copyright infringement issues if we use those fonts.  (Of course, double check and make sure that there are no restrictions on the font in the way that we can use it, but the options are still pretty great with Creative Cloud).
  4. No matter how much we (as designers) will try to smartly name our files; sometimes it can get confusing when we are dealing with a lot of pictures.  Well, an awesome feature of Dreamweaver is that it will create a pop-up thumbnail for any <img src> attribute.  There is no question what picture you’re working with when you’re only looking at the code.
  5. Naturally, Dreamweaver works wonderfully well with Photoshop.  It is nice to display images on websites in different shapes than just the typical rectangle that we work with in Photoshop.  Instead of using a mask in Photoshop to change the shape of the image — we can do the same thing in Dreamweaver!  Under the insert panel, there is a component that allows us to insert a special class, like ing-circle to the <img> tag.  This is much easier than going back into Photoshop and adjusting the image.

These are just a few things that I have discovered that I like!  This list is (of course) changes each day as I learn more about Dreamweaver.  Good luck and happy designing!

Brands: How NOT to get Lost at Sea

I was recently reading an article by George Lange (brand content expert who has worked with Facebook and Instagram) that got me thinking — how does any company not get absolutely lost among all the chaos that is branding being thrown at consumers, especially on social media?

I think it can be safe to say that (even though some people might not intend it), every person on the many different forms of social media are there because they have a story to share.

Every day people share the high’s and lo’s of their day, the big moments of their lives, the seemingly normal and uneventful parts of their day, as well as their opinions of social and political events (though this is not an exhaustive list, of course).

Any of us that has a Twitter feed or a Facebook timeline is no stranger to the stories that the people in our lives share.  But shouldn’t the businesses and companies that we frequent have stories to tell as well?  Without a doubt, there is a reason why companies like Coca-Cola and Verizon are remembered by millions of people; the stories they have to tell resonate with their consumers.

I think that more than anything consumers want to connect with the businesses they support on a personal level.  This however, is no small task.  Consumers what to know that the businesses they support are not just there to make a profit — the customer want to see that the business has real causes and issues they care about, that they genuinely care about the customers, and that they give back to the community.  People want to see that businesses are living and breathing entities.

There are unique people within businesses that drive their success in our communities/the world.  We need and want to hear of these people and how they help connect their business’ mission to our cities, and exactly how the company fits into our city.  Each business like each person, is unique and needs to have their story told.  Our world wants to hear these stories, especially since people will be able to relate to them!

The identity of a company and their brand is not just about the product they sell anymore; the stories these companies have to tell to the world is just as crucial to their success.