I am not much of a freehand artist – I can only produce art with words or structured materials, so I have never been one for sketching the layout of a visual project.
This past summer while back at home, I kept encouraging my father to change the design of the website for his new restaurant because it was a quickly thrown together thing, and therefore very unappealing to the visual senses. I was delegated the task, but crippled without design programs installed on my computer, I turned to the one software I know best: Microsoft Word.
On Word I did what I could, trying to replicate my vision. The draft turned out like this:
Tonight, however, the internet proved once again how much of a benefit it is in efficiency and convenience with a website called moqups.
Moqups is a user-friendly web tool that allows for creating layouts digitally.
This is what the web address will pull up, a tutorial using moqups tools.
With this new gift, I decided to redo my layout to see how much easier and quicker it would have been to have known about this months ago.
There are multiple ready-made stencils (as mocups calls them) that can be dragged onto the project sheet and rearranged and adjusted. This includes re-sizing, color filling, shape rounding, borders, border colors, border lines, text inserting, and many more options. The website even gives measurements and alignment guides, as seen with the logo recreation in the screenshot above.
I was not able to match the colors exactly with the logo for this quick mock up, but being a mock up, only a more general idea is needed anyway, so I did not feel a loss with this. I will be able to uncover more detailed features with more time. Although I put a placeholder stencil in for the logo and recreated the Facebook and Twitter logos, there is an option to upload images.
Below are my projects side-by-side, with moqups on the left and Microsoft Word on the right.
Although not timed, this process did turn out to be much easier and quicker, and enough features are available with the moqups free account for me to be sure that I will come back to use it again.