Archive for 2012

Behance exec shares “dog food” recipe to API enthusiasts

Eating your own dog food,” is a term that means demonstrating confidence in a product by using the product one’s self, often credited to the late 1980s culture at Microsoft.

But online portfolio startup, Behance—self-described as the LinkedIn of the creative world—has embraced the “dog food”philosophy in its API strategy. At today’s Business of APIs Conference in New York, Behance’s home city, chief of software architecture Bryan Latten shared the four ingredients of the company’s secret dog food sauce:

  1. Model your own workflow: The idea behind eating your own dog food is that you should create an API that your own company would want to use. Which means, step one, according to Latten, is to know your corporate workflow.
  2. Repurpose your data, make it different: Once executives identify possible ways the data might be broken up they should take a moment to look at it with fresh eyes. Try to view the data from different perspectives and figure out new ways to interpret what it means.
  3. Use non-developers for feedback: Latten said there’s nothing like hearing a chief executive with little or no understanding of the technology behind an API react to new proposals. But that’s just one example. Ask your loved ones (if they’re not already tired of your entrepreneurial rantings), your customers, and anyone willing to listen, and give thoughtful feedback.
  4. Perform practice maintenance. Seriously: We reached out to Latten after he spoke and asked him to break this one down for us in different terms, and he asked us a question, “Will your clients now when you’ve made a change or will the new version be seamless?” He said those incorporating changes to an API should practice the transition on an offline database to make sure when the new version actually goes live there aren’t any glitches.

Behance was founded in 2006 and is a platform that makes it easier for creative professionals to reach their audience. They have a think tank and conference called 99U, formerly The 99 Percent, devoted to researching best practices of productive and creative people. Earlier this year, TechCrunch reported that Behance, which was at the time growing at a rate of 1,000 members per day, would cease work on a planned redesign and focus on its “creative graph,”charting the connections of freelancers and small business owners similarly to Facebook’s social graph.

Read the full article here

Most Appreciated Projects on Behance

Appreciations are a way to send genuine kudos to another creative professional on Behance. This is our community’s way of curating the network, so that the best projects gain the most exposure. Here’s a look at two of the most appreciated projects on Behance this week:

Exploring the boundaries between fashion and sculpture, Madame Peripetie let’s her unusual color palet take center stage. See “Constructed Reality,” the full photo story here.

This intricate, matt, typographic poster was originally created for a competition that we sure hope the artist, Boglárka Nádi, won.  See the full project (in more detail) here.

Meet the team: Clément Faydi

Who are you and what do you do at Behance?
Bonjour! I’m Clément, one of the three Lead Designers at Behance. As part of the “Product Team,” I’m involved in concepting new ideas and turning them into features and products. I am currently mostly focused on helping creatives discover more work and getting inspired. Things I do every day: discuss how to improve products, sketch wireframes, make them real in Photoshop, support our developers as they make their magic happen, and of course, what I’m most passionate about: moving things by one pixel.

What are three desktop tools you can’t live without?
1. Photoshop – I know it’s obvious for a designer, but it’s definitely the software I use the most and certainly couldn’t live without.
2. Rdio – The best way to listen to music on the internet! Beyond providing me with more music than I could ever hope for, they are at the forefront of UI design, and always take minimalism to a new level. I love what they do.
3. Alfred- Because it allows me to open Twitter in 1/4 seconds.

What have you worked on recently that you’re extra proud of?
I am super excited about the new Behance iPhone app that will launch very soon. We have incorporated some key features that will help creatives discover more work and showcase what they are working on to the world, from their phone. I’m also currently redesigning the way users find great projects on Behance and will hopefully be able to share a preview soon. Very exciting!

 What do you listen to while working?
Mostly jazz. I started playing piano when I was 8 years old and now find myself discovering a lot of subtleties I couldn’t hear before. I guess that designing makes me unconsciously listen to music in a very different way. Also, I really can’t focus on my work when hearing songs with lyrics!

What are some startups that you’re a fan of?
There are a lot of startups I follow, but I’ve lately been very impressed with what the guys at FiftyThree are doing. They always solve problems in a surprising, yet simple way, and that’s a very difficult thing to do. They recently launched a new tool called the “Mixer” for their app Paper and revealed their process and some of their secrets here. Quite magical, I love how obsessed they are.

Check out Clément’s ProSite, Behance portfolio, or follow him on Twitter.

Behind the Project: Day of the Dead

In this series, we’ll look deeper into some of the projects on that were especially admired in our community. This time, we spoke with John Rees, a photographer in Austin, Texas about his photo project “Dia De Los Muertos” – named for the Mexican holiday that remembers deceased friends/family, marked by unique costumes. With a great inspiration behind the work, learn more about his process and execution of these striking shots.

What was your inspiration for this project?
The inspiration for this was – quite simply put – my mother.  After her unexpected death, I was creatively paralyzed for quiet awhile – but I did this work for the sake of doing something creative again, and in that way it is a tribute to the strong will and sprit of my mother…

I worked with a fabulous hair and make-up artist by the name of Brittany Troche, whom I also consider a dear friend, and collaborate with on projects from time to time.  We both share an interest in “Dia de los Meurtos” imagery and what it celebrates.

Can you describe your process in creating this project?
It was all quite organic. I was in Salt Lake City doing client work, and both Brittany and the talent (the model Caitlyn) were available. It all came together quite naturally, which is what almost always happens when you surround yourself with such talented people. I’m fortunate to know so many generous, talented people.

Did you expect it to be as popular as it’s been on The Behance Network?
I didn’t have any expectations about this body of work.  It was pure catharsis and I didn’t have any real intent beyond that.  Creating just to create again.  So, yes I’m surprised that it has received any attention at all.  Since I posted it on Behance, It has been published in Mexico in a publication called, Origama, I have had request for other uses as well.  It’s really nice that there is movement around work that is so personal to me.

Did you go through many versions and iterations before coming up with these final pieces?
No – I shot them all in one day, We just kept mixing things up as we saw fit throughout the process, adding things and subtracting others as we saw fit.  It was purely an emotional response to how things worked or didn’t

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Macys Day Parade Photos on Gothamist

Behance’s very own Navid Baraty was featured on the cover of Gothamist last week, with his unique photographs of the Macy’s Day parade from 30 stories above 6th Avenue. Navid told Gothamist ”As always, I took them by leaning over the edge!”

Full article here

More photography by Navid Baraty can be seen on his Behance portfolio 

Most Appreciated Projects on Behance

Appreciations are a way to send genuine kudos to another creative professional on Behance. This is our community’s way of curating the network, so that the best projects gain the most exposure. Here’s a look at two of the most appreciated projects on Behance this week:

L’Enfant Extérieur, a photo retouching project on Behance, was born from the notion that there’s a young, innocent, naive core in all of us. This visual exploration is as thoughtful as it is playful – and one of this week’s Most Appreciated projects. Take a look!

The Nanjing-based art museum Sifang is well-constructed with simple, elegant architecture – so when it came to crafting a brand identity the same principles had to be applied. An identity that leaves white space alone, playing with subtle typefaces and angles instead, is a crowd favorite. See the full identity here.