A while back besides working on my design gigs I had decided to work on a side project called “Ao Chalein”, this was a collaboration with my wife and by extension my lovely hyper active daughter Amal.
For those unfamiliar with it – it’s kind of like a Vlog where we cover interesting places to visit or eat out at. The project is called “Ao Chalein” and you can find it on youtube.
Now.. This is easier said than done.
I already have a day job in a different city than the one I reside in and Faryal already has a social media presence, which is hard to maintain as it is, adding Ao Chalein on top of it would be unfair – given she’s the one who primarily looks after Amal as well. It’s also a bit tough when we’re both trying to produce the same content but have different requirements – and for Ao Chalein both of us have to be there.. this is one of the reasons why there is a bigger gap between videos.. So, we made a change.
I would focus on Ao Chalein, while Faryal would go on to do her own social media content (Faryal’s Mix Plate). Alot of the times we both would be on the same location but making content is much relatively easier because we can do this in different slots. One can take care of Amal while other produces content. This also gives me a bit more freedom to explore topics she would otherwise not be interested in or not have much feedback about.
The first thing I did instead of focusing on the content is to rebrand it with only me 😀
During this process I also chose to update the typography and went with a more thicker typeface – Lalezar (for some reason I think it has an Iraqi feel, not sure why). This is a free to use font from the Google fonts library. This also came with an updated style to the thumbnails which I will continue to experiment with going forward.
Having done that, I have released 3 new videos on youtube so far, hope to many many more, if someone is reading this and have read so far, please do check these out.
I had written before about working on a pet project. This mostly stem from 2 things.
I wanted to test out Figma, since I was relatively newer to it and I wanted to implement a better solution for my team.
There’s this game I really enjoy ‘Extreme Landings by Rortos’, and even though I enjoy the game play I honestly think the graphics and the user interface is far from friendly. This becomes more obvious when you start using a phone with a notch (for me this was iPhone X).
Having said that I do encourage you to go download the game from the app store here.
Once you have played the game, hell even if you haven’t take a look at my version of it, obviously it’s just a concept and is made in figma.. Some screens will feel like swipe gesture based.. do that.. Have fun, here’s the link: tinyurl.com/mayday-concept
After the last time I decided to write I got side tracked.. To be fair to myself I had other important stuff to focus so the blog took a back seat.
I moved into a different apartment after traveling back from Pakistan. Set up a small studio for myself – picture below. Had a small Covid 19 scare from a friend after me and wifey had done the vaccination, so we went into a 10 day quarantine as well (100% healthy now, except all the fat is still there).
Not sure if you know but I’ve been designing for the screens for a better part of my life and from all those years of designing websites, apps etc I’ve been doing User Experience Design from when it wasn’t even a thing. In any case.. In the recent years I had made my jump from designing in Photoshop to Sketch and boy was it awesome. But as the team I was a part of grew so did our requirements and one of them was a better place for collaboration, a better feedback system, a place for updated Design files, brand elements etc. While we’re at it, I’ve also transitioned away from Photoshop and Illustrator completely for personal work, I now use the Affinity Suite (Affinity Photo & Designer), though I hope they add support for RTL languages as well. For RTL I play around a bit with Vectornator.
This brings me to Figma – Having heard of it before and dismissing it on the pretext that it was browser based (and hence wont be powerful enough) I had completely dropped the idea of trying it out (this is around the time it was launched) – But as some of my friends pointed out recently, Figma is definitely not worth ignoring anymore – infact it’s pretty powerful compared native apps as well (Sketch, Adobe XD etc).
I thought why not (its got a free account option), so I decided to make a concept flight simulation game (something I thought would make Figma run through its paces) – Was I wrong? So Wrong!So Very Wrong! I will someday link up the prototype when it’s completed (yep still working on it), but man it worked like a charm. Created a test account for my workplace as well to test the collaboration features and the project management side, not only was I pleased, I was super excited. I’ve ended up buying a plan for myself work as well (Don’t like to keep everything in drafts) and I Wanted to re do my portfolio website as well. My team has moved on Figma as well and collaboration and assets sharing more streamlined too.
In any case – It’s definately worth a try. I may write something completely Figma related one day, but for now.. this is it..
After a few years of silence without notice and with no one to miss, please welcome back in the blogosphere, Shahzad Khan.
Takes the microphone
Having written a few hundred or so posts that amount to total shit, going to give this another go.
I may or may not cover a few how to articles (throw in a few 101 and guides too), apps introductions or shoutouts and maybe a few movie or tv show reviews, bundled with my next to no good midnight rambling.