Jozi Firecracker Factory, LLC on Blog

Jozi Firecracker Factory, LLC on Blog

Sep 27, 2019

Creating an effective messaging framework for your brand

Creating an effective messaging framework is easier for any brand and can provide a lot of value. Here is how to get started with building your own messaging framework for your brand.

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Jun 19, 2019

Building a Design System that drives efficiency while saving time and money

It is important to have a design system in place for a more efficient workflow in an organization. It saves money by saving time that resources spend on building the right solution. Why we prefer Figma as the tool for managing Design Systems.

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May 29, 2019

How good Design Systems can help rapid prototyping in your Organization

A Design System not only makes your product consistent but also boosts the productivity and efficiency of the entire organization. Having a Design System in place also allows you to rapidly prototype ideas.

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Feb 21, 2019

Jozi Firecracker Factory Recognized as a Top Creative Agency on DesignRush

Best Creative Agencies – 2019 Creative Agency Rankings The Jozi Firecracker Factory has been recognized as a top company in the Creative Agencies category in 2019. DesignRush is your guide to finding the best professional agencies, categorized by their areas of expertise. They analyze and rank hundreds of agencies to help brands find top full-service agencies, […]

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Feb 18, 2019

Figma Organization — A Love Story

A resurgence of inspiration Figma Organization is out in the wild, and we’ve joined the ranks of what must surely be one of the world’s happiest creative departments. Since we’ve started using Figma, we’ve enjoyed a resurgence of inspiration and a sense of falling back in love with design — all because Figma understands how to get out of the way. Don’t get us wrong, we've always loved design, but it’s pretty hard to feel that love when you’re forced to work with awful, bloated software and your machine is taking 10 minutes to attempt to save a file and then crashing anyway. Or when every feature you’ve ever known and loved since forever and use with the familiarity of breathing suddenly becomes hidden behind interactions you’ll rarely need to use. It’s really, really hard to love designing on those days. The scalable design universe We've already gone into some detail about why we love Figma. With Figma Organization, these newly found powers of collaboration we're leveraging with our colleagues, clients and peers are starting to take on on a wonderful rhythm of their own, and the feasibility of creating a scalable design universe for the brands and products we’re building together is finally solidifying, and it’s so much fun to be a part of — for us and for our clients. Design from anywhere Our first foray into Figma organization began in an Enterprise Beta environment. For the first time we were able to publish, share and collaborate on files, prototypes, components and styles across Enterprise teams — a real game-changer for global teams and those working remotely. Working closely — yet remotely — has been somewhat of a challenge until moving to Figma. Now our creative teams feel like they may as well be sitting across from us as we work to solve complex design challenges together, from anywhere in the world. Transparency and inclusion At first, the thought of having other teams, designers, project managers, developers and engineers inside our design process felt daunting, even a little unsettling. I have never been a fan of over-the-shoulder 'designers', giving me their 2 cents when they have limited visibility into the process that informs design decisions in the first place, but I can honestly say that after a solid 10 months using Figma — that this is different. With Figma, you can set up your workflow to give your teams and clients greater visibility into the design process. One of the results of this is that good design solutions don't get railroaded for immaterial reasons. This happens because design decisions are now more deeply understood by everyone — not just the creative team. As a product designer you're able to share as much visibility into the design process as you like, helping to overcome barriers to your vision through open problem-solving and inclusion with everyone from engineers to project managers to clients — you decide. The permissions structure of Figma and Figma Organization gives you complete control over how teams, projects, files and assets are shared and presented. Leveraging these features to broaden ownership of the solution means more successful releases, more buy-in from engineering and less curveballs brought on because people on the team don't know where you're going and how you got there. Don’t hate. Iterate. Another huge pain point for design teams is feedback. Collecting it, dissecting it, actioning it, tracking it — it's a massive pain in the design pants. Trying to whittle down opinions and direction from people in large teams through emails, Slack, water-cooler chats, formal and informal reviews while keeping everyone else in the loop about what's getting updated and why is a real challenge — especially whilst trying to keep the design vision intact. With Figma, there's a clean, open system of providing, tracking and actioning feedback through real-time comments and Slack integration that keeps everyone effortlessly in the loop. And because all feedback is open, it's much more constructive and easily managed. It has greatly reduced time-wasting meetings where people talk in circles, derailing progress with subjective opinions that have poorly-considered consequences — this simply cannot happen if the design process is visible. With Figma, we can work through problems and differing approaches with our clients in a collaborative, demonstrative and productive way. Get Figma Organization

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Feb 17, 2019

Design and code with Figma and React

Component-based design As a UX team, we’ve been working hard to create, implement and scale evolving design systems for Enterprise. This is a gargantuan and ongoing effort, but every rendition gets us closer and closer to the goal of pure component-based design. As part of this journey, we’ve been getting to grips with React, trying to learn as much (from a designer’s perspective) as we possibly can. This course aimed at designers is one of the best resources we’ve used to date, and they have more courses in this space packed with visual learning content and project resources. React for Designers In this course, you’ll learn React as a designer, starting with styling your layout using CSS Grid, animating your user interface and creating a full-blown React site that can be deployed on Netlify in seconds. You’ll also work with dynamic data and charge customers with Stripe. The techniques taught here can help you build a beautiful page selling your product, or create a personal portfolio with a dynamic blog. Most importantly, you’ll gain valuable insights into how developers work, and how you can build too, making your job even more essential to your team. Learn by building This is a course for visual learners. It focuses on learning by building a real product, which is my personal approach to learning new things quickly and efficiently. I highly recommend applying your own logos, images, colors and content to make your site completely unique. At any time during your progress, I suggest clicking on the resources provided to learn more in-depth about the frameworks that we use. Get the Course

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Jan 8, 2019

Why we’re in love with Figma

Figma sparks joy It’s simple really. Figma sparks joy. It’s snappy, intuitive and fun as hell to work in, and it makes me excited to sit down and start cranking out some UX. I can work as quickly as ideas come to me, and the thrill of not having to save and wait an eternity for files that most certainly will crash my machine makes me love it even more. Yes, Figma sparks joy. As far as functionality goes, I just love how they’ve stripped everything down to basics and at the same time left nothing behind. It's a delicate balancing act and it's paid off handsomely. At the end of the day, that’s the trick isn’t it? Making something really complex feel really simple. It’s fast If you've been working in one of those old grandaddy design software applications that shall not be named, you'll know exactly what I'm talking about. Shit is slow as molasses and the user interface is so thoroughly over-designed that designing has become a tiresome chore. Every time you use it, you feel like the developers have entirely forgotten their audience and purpose. If this sounds like you, one of the first things you're going to notice about working in Figma is the speed. The snappy responsiveness, the long-forgotten delightfulness of a design tool behaving just the way you would expect. It fosters collaboration After becoming used to Figma's shared components and libraries, there is simply no going back to the way things used to be. Designers spending countless hours trying to develop, maintain and distribute style guides and redlines to engineering teams that didn't have outdated rules in them was a constant struggle. With Figma, the efficiency of being able to instantly share design assets and styles across your projects and files — all in real-time — is nothing short of amazing, and it puts an end to the problem of designers and engineers deploying old design rules in current and upcoming projects. Rapid prototyping Prototyping used to take levels of effort that weren't always feasible. With Figma, you're able to prototype virtually anything with relative ease, and Figma Mirror allows you to view your designs from the Figma desktop app live across all of your iOS devices. This incredibly helpful in building live demos for clients who may not be able to visualize the end product in action, and it really helps to move revision cycles out of the development process altogether. To say that engineers are happy about this would be an understatement. It streamlines feedback All feedback is captured, conversational, trackable and visible to all — right in the frames and components you're working on. No more running around trying to find those emails, tickets, hand-scribbled notes or dealing with the drama of trying to keep everyone in the loop about the latest changes you got from the CEO and why. It's all there. Anyone you decide to give access to can follow along with feedback, updates and rationales to understand why the design is moving in a certain direction. And the Slack integration allows all feedback to be posted in custom Slack channels, so nothing is happening in the dark. If the design process is happening in the open, everyone owns the direction — not just the design team. This means that you don't end up being forced to be yes men for that new bitchy intern on the social media team and then standing alone on design island when everything goes to shit. What about PDFs? Since working in Figma I’ve only had a single gripe — why can’t I export a printable file? This meant I couldn’t exclusively use Figma for my advertising projects as there was no practical way to hand off files to print production (no CMYK color profile) and no way to export PDFs. I had been using this handy little workaround for months (which I will admit was pretty great) except for the fact that the final PDFs were massive and were virtually impossible to compress. To my absolute delight, Figma announced late last year that they’d included PDF export in their upcoming release: “In the ephemeral and changing world of digital design, PDF – a format born when software came in a box and phones had cords – remains essential. From iOS developers who import vector representations of designs to individuals who leverage its precise color handling for printing digital assets, PDF’s applications are vast. Unsurprisingly, the ability to export designs to PDF is perhaps the most requested feature here at Figma. Today, we are excited to deliver on this request by introducing a PDF export option in Figma. We paid special attention to quality so you can rely on it to represent your work accurately to clients and stakeholders.” The PDF export feature works beautifully and file sizes and reasonably compressed and now practical to email and share in every other way. This is a huge win for the team at Figma and shows us yet again that they’re not only listening to us but actively engaging us in making our design needs their top priority. Get Figma

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