Trying Out Figma

This week I finally sit down and got my hands dirty in design. I partially explored design systems, sketched some logos, colors, and typography in Figma. Then I tried a slight re-design of my website's home page:

Figma is really intuitive. When I first saw others' cursors moving in real time, it blew my mind. But for me as a one-person shop, its intuitive interface is the reason I love it. I tried Photoshop, Illustrator, and Sketch. They all failed me. Figma is the first tool I felt home-ish. I still struggle with it, but I do see its potential in my workflow.

I know the design I did today isn't great. It's not even good. It's the worst thing I will probably come up with. And I'm not updating my home page to be exactly what I have designed.

However, the design did improve the website in some areas. And I just incorporated them in the latest build.

Separating code and design does make the product better. I will spend more time on dedicated design sessions.

A post from dA Umbrella, published at 2019-09-14 06:20

The first two things I did after opening a P.O. box:

A post from dA Umbrella, published at 2018-12-21 19:55

Introducing the DoleeArts Newsletter

You can now sign up the DoleeArts Newsletter at the bottom of this site, or using this link:

I'm not sure what I will include in the newsletter though, so stay tuned 😛

A post from dA Umbrella, published at 2018-12-19 19:55

DoleeArts is now on, follow me here!

A post from dA Umbrella, published at 2017-12-22 05:20

Umbrella now supports micro posts! This is the first of this kind.

A post from dA Umbrella, published at 2017-11-06 07:20

JSON Feed Is Now Available


It only took me 30 minutes to add. And, I spent half of the time actually upgrading Cloud SDK… JSON FTW!

A post from dA Umbrella, published at 2017-06-02 06:33

DoleeArts Posts RSS Feed is Now Available

RSS Link:

This feed includes all posts on DoleeArts. If you want more fine grained feeds, for example, posts only from VR Planet Defense, drop a comment below and I will prioritize the development.

A post from dA Umbrella, published at 2017-01-25 05:09

Take on projects to improve skills

I have been wanting to improve my photography skills for a while. I'm not becoming a professional photographer. I just want to take better photos.

A few weeks back, I created a Photography project under DoleeArts. I hope to learn more about photography through the life time of this project. However, I did not take any photos under that project at all. I actually don't know what kind of photos I should take. I simply don't know where to start.

The more I think about this, the less sense the Photography project makes. Photography is not a project. It is a skill. Just like, programming is not a project, programming is a skill. I will never declare a project called Programming to become a better programmer. Instead, I have many projects that involve programming. Through those projects, I am becoming a better programmer.

That leads me to think, to take better photos, I should take on projects like 128 portraits of programmers. I should take photos to document my Yard project. I should take reference pictures of interesting objects and add them to my next game.

Similar to the deleted project Photography, I have the Paper project dedicated to improve my writing skills, Pencil project dedicated to improve my drawing and painting skills, and Polygon project dedicated to improve my CG skills. They all make less sense to me now. They should be all embedded in my other projects. I should write journal for Yard, sketch characters and develop 3D worlds for Steady Drop. I should have a GameReviews project and move my game reviews there.

So to conclude for DoleeArts: Paper, Pencil, and Polygon are going away. The journal entries will be moved to other existing or newly created projects. Also, I’m glad that the project names are not included in the permalinks of Journal entries from the beginning.

A post from dA Umbrella, published at 2015-12-22 05:06

Introducing Umbrella

Today, I'm introducing Umbrella. It is the recursive system that powers the DoleeArts umbrella. It is written from scratch using Go, and hosted on App Engine.

The goal of Umbrella is to keep an individual motivated to ship products. Or, like what Justin Jackson said, Just Fucking Do It.

The solution here is to have the Umbrella system as the partner. It is inspired by Devine Lu Linvega's amazing work on XXIIVV.

The system consists of Projects. There are currently threes types of projects:

Each project contains zero or more of the following axises:

All the projects are public, and its axises will be slowly made available for public consumption.

A post from dA Umbrella, published at 2015-11-15 23:23

Introducing DevLog

Update on November 12, 2015: DevLog is considered being replaced by Umbrella.

Before talk about this DevLog, I feel it is necessary to say a little bit about DoleeArts first.

DoleeArts is the name of my side project. It came from a simple idea: I should really start to make something, anything, but seriously, with love and long term commitment. It is actually not one project, but a series of projects.

So what are they? Well, first thing is this website. It is built from scratch using Go and Bootstrap, and is hosted on App Engine. It has a home page, the Linked List(inspired by Daring Fireball), and now the DevLog. You can also subscribe site-wide updates via this feed.

Besides the website, I also decided to make video games. After taking a game design course at my graduate school, I was fascinated by this industry. I can’t wait to step into it.

Currently I’m working on a mobile game called Memory Cube. I don’t have much experience on making games now and this is only my very first official game, so I don’t expect it to be very attractive. My ultimate goal is just to finish and release it, and at the same time to learn game development from this process.

However, the development stopped every now and then. It has been almost a year since I started the game, and I still haven’t finished it yet.

Why? Why on earth can’t I just fucking finish it?

Lately I find out it is actually hard to make progress on anything if I’m just in my house staring at my computer screen and only thinking on my own, especially when the game is simple and I started to suffer from aesthetic fatigue.

After weeks of procrastination and randomly reading other developers’ blogs, I realized that writing is a good potential solution to this issue. One can be benefited from writing in many different ways. But for me, the most important one is it plays the role of commitment to my audiences. Of course, the most important (and likely the only, because of my poor linguistic performance and competence) audience is myself. I believe I will be unconsciously influenced by this public commitment, and actually be pushed forward.

So, here is DevLog. My writings on the progress of my side projects, DoleeArts.

In the next post I will talk about Memory Cube. Stay tuned.

A post from dA Umbrella, published at 2013-09-02 05:27