Top Designers and THEIR Inspiration

Posted by Steve Tolley

In the 2nd part of my design inspiration article series I asked 2 TOP Designers/Photoshoppers to let me know what inspires THEM in order to see how they come up with their ideas and what artists, websites, sources etc…they use, here are the answers that I got,

David Leggett - Tutorial 9

Tutorial 9 is a fantastic website offering top quality Photoshop Tutorials and resources, and home to the famous Photoshop School which will teach the beginner how to progress in Photoshop with exams at the end of each grade.

My work is mostly web based, so I do a lot of web design, interface design, etc. My goal as a designer is to balance compelling media with a usable interface. When it comes to inspiring myself, I like to browse through online galleries like,,, and see what friends are doing on Flickr.




A lot of my inspiration comes from outside the web though. For example, I greatly admire the folks who design magazines like WIRED - who really use unique grids in their work to create page layouts that are really creative and out of the ordinary. Along with magazines, I like collecting album art, cool package/product designs, and flyers/business cards.

I’ve got a bunch of really artistic friends that are fun to watch as well. Whether I’m bouncing ideas off them, or if they ask for my opinion on their work, I find myself being inspired all the same.

Last, but not least, scenery is a great tool for me. Not just nature, but taking in an entire scene of just about anything, and observing how things fit together or stand apart from each other. Skylines, Offices, the Outdoors, anything really.

Adelle Charles - Fuel Your Creativity

Fuel Your Creativity is a website dedicated to design and web resources, offering great links to cool websites, Adelle describes her site as being: “An open forum where everyone is welcome (and encouraged!) to exchange ideas and tips. It’s not just for designers either. Writers, photographers, graffitists…come one, come all.”


This site is such a great resource for all types of design. Everything is broken down into categories or sets to quickly find the type of inspiration you’re looking for. When I’m working on website comps, I usually visit the “articles” & “layout” category and when gathering research for posts, I head over to the “typography” section.


Amazing articles on web design to get your creative juices flowing. The site itself is inspiration! Great site to visit daily for design trends, ideas and tuts.


Great place to look at Logo designs, Business Card Designs & Flash Websites which are all user submitted. Another great inspirational site made by the folks over at Envato. I primarily use faveup to check out logos & business cards.


One of the best showcases around to draw inspiration quickly. They have some of the best looking sites listed and my favorite part about the site (or most useful) is the rollover (very fast) screenshot view. In most cases if I don’t like the quick view - I keep on going.


Tasty sites focused on typography. What can I say; sometimes those are the best looking sites! Great inspiration and go to when you’re stuck on layouts.


Believe it or not - I gain inspiration from the people I follow on twitter. No it’s not a gallery, but if you utilize twitter in the right way, you can get a lot of opinions on things fast and check out what other people just like you are doing, reading, surfing & talking about. This has been one of the best tools for me & inspiration on blogging or even what to blog about.

Design Inspiration from Other Top Designers

Both of the above have done posts on what inspires them and how to best utilize the web in order to get the most out of the inspiration available to use, so just click on either of the above links to find even more inspiration sources etc…

Useful Designers to Follow on Twitter

Some of the most useful and influential people to follow on twitter are listed below, this is because they offer good feedback on work and generally tweet about interesting articles around the web, which offer more inspiration and some general fun along the way,

And then there is always me, I try my best to help my fellow twitterers, so head over to MY TWITTER PAGE and click the little follow button,

Thats all I have for this article, hope you enjoyed it and that it has helped you find that much needed inspiration, when I was making this article I enjoyed looking at the websites that these designers use and have bookmarked my favourites to help me when I need inspiring.

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This entry was posted on Tuesday, September 16th, 2008 at 10:01 am and is filed under Articles. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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9 Responses to “Top Designers and THEIR Inspiration”

  1. adelle Says:

    Thanks for asking me to be a part of this article (and luckily) I don’t have the same answers as David! :) I had forgotten about Screenfluent until he brought it up, which I’m glad he did! The twitter list is great too > I follow every one of them. Loving your blog, it’s growing fast, keep it up :)

  2. Steve Tolley Says:

    Thanks for the input Adelle this article wouldn’t have existed unless you were a part of it, The websites that both you and David mentioned are great and are influential, I should be thanking you for being a part of the article, and it is growing fast which I am very pleased about…:D

    And also a big Thanks to David aswell for his input, it is much appreciated…:D

  3. Michelle Says:

    I’m an avid follower of Fuel Your Creativity…I’ll be sure to check out the rest of these. If they feature the same caliber of information as Adelle’s site, then I will become an immediate fan I’m sure!

  4. adelle Says:

    Thanks Michelle! :P

  5. styletime Says:

    Yah on a list although I dont think it counts when you have to ask ;) lol!!!!!

  6. Steve Tolley Says:

    LOL, I do apologise mate, i did that bit last minute and just pulled a few names out, your there now though, better late than never :D


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