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How to create your own pixel grids

From: Creative Quick Tips

Video: How to create your own pixel grids

Hello there, and welcome back to another installment of Creative Quick Tips. And so here's my PNG file. It's transparent, Then you can go over here and you could draw out a little sidebar area.

How to create your own pixel grids

Hello there, and welcome back to another installment of Creative Quick Tips. My name is Justin Seeley, and this week we're going to be talking about using grids in your web design and how to quickly and easily generate a grid for you to use in your next project. It's all based on this website that I found called Gridulator. That's gridulator.com. And Gridulator basically allows you to make pixel grids very quickly, very easily, and then download those as a PNG file. Which you can then load into any application you want; Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign.

Doesn't matter. Now, why are grid systems important? Well, I use grid systems to create nice wire frames and mock-ups that really translate well into easily codeable CSS and HTML. And I think that, if you are a designer doing anything for the web or screen-based design, a grid is definitely the way to go. The trick is going to be determining exactly what your grid looks like, and that's going to be based on the scope of your project. But in any case, let's go ahead and move on. I'm going to go ahead and create a grid here, so I'm just going to go in and I'm going to change this overall width to 1,000 pixels.

Then I'm also going to increase the number of columns here to something like 12. You'll notice as I do that, all of the options start to get a little smaller down here. Once you do that, you're then going to just choose how wide you want your columns to be, and how wide you want the gutter width to be. The gutter width refers to the distance between each column. Now, when I'm choosing a pixel grid, I like to have nice even numbers, so something like 65 and 20. I don't like anything arbitrary like 76 and 8, or 54 and 32. I just like these either five or zero based numbers.

So, if I want to preview this, I can take a look at it. That's what it's going to look like, and so I can hide that. That's cool. I'll hit make PNG now, and that's going to download this to my computer. And now I can launch that up in any application I want. So let's go ahead and go over into Photoshop for a second. And inside of Photoshop, what I'm going to do is just Cmd or Ctrl+O. going to go into the Downloads folder and we're going to bring up that PNG file. And so here's my PNG file. It's transparent, which is really great because that makes it easy for me to then put it into another document.

So let's say I was working on a website design. I'll create a new document here. And I'll make this 1,200 pixels wide. And we'll make it about 2,000 pixels tall to have a full width website right there. So, let's just fill the screen with it, something like that. And then let's go over here and let's take this. I'll grab my Move tool with the letter V. Click and drag that over. Hold down Shift, and it positions it right in the dead center of my page. Now, I can free transform this, Cmd or Ctrl+T. And what we're going to do is we're just going to extend it up.

And I'm holding down the Option key while I'm doing that to make sure it extends the full length of the page. And then there we go, we've got my grid system setup. Now if you're not a fan of having this sort of ruby lithe overlay on top of all of your designs, that's okay. Just bring up your rulers, Cmd or Ctrl+R, and then start dragging out guides. And the guides will actually snap to the edges of this, and you can quickly and easily make your own grid using these guides. Then just simply make sure that when you're designing, you stick to the grid that you've created.

Now if I hide this layer, you can actually see there's my grid starting to take shape right there on my Photoshop document. And so how does this work exactly? Well, let's ignore the grid lines that I just drew and turn my grid back on. While I'm designing things, what I'll want to do is grab something like a Shape tool, and then come in here and align it up. And I'll zoom in so I can actually see what I'm doing here. So let's say I wanted a header. Well, the header might go from the start point right up here and go all the way across. And then stop right there. That would be a 100% of that column width.

Right? Everything goes across all of the columns. And you might have a main content area right here. The main content area might span five or six columns. Something like that. Then you can go over here and you could draw out a little sidebar area. You're just basically creating a wire frame based on this grid. And the best part about it is everything is evenly spaced apart without having to worry about margins and padding, and all that good stuff. It's set up based on the grid. So, again, just go ahead and check out gridulator.com.

Like I said, it's going to be different for every single project that you have, but it's a great way to get started creating your own pixel grids quickly and easily for your web design projects.

Show transcript

This video is part of

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Creative Quick Tips

57 video lessons · 37720 viewers

Justin Seeley

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  1. 1m 45s
    1. Welcome to the series
    2. How to send feedback
  2. 9m 1s
    1. How to create line shadows in Illustrator
      5m 30s
    2. Using custom keyboard shortcuts in Photoshop
      3m 31s
  3. 11m 50s
    1. How to create layers from Photoshop Layer Styles
      3m 14s
    2. How to turn Illustrator artwork into Shape Layers
      3m 15s
    3. How to combine vector shapes in Photoshop
      2m 49s
    4. How to use text wrapping in Illustrator
      2m 32s
  4. 15m 41s
    1. How to effectively rotate objects in Illustrator
      2m 39s
    2. How to create interlocking shapes in Illustrator
      3m 29s
    3. How to speed up Photoshop's performance
      3m 25s
    4. How to use tool shortcuts in Photoshop
      2m 52s
    5. How to use springloaded shortcuts in Photoshop
      3m 16s
  5. 9m 27s
    1. How to create a better Twitter avatar
      3m 59s
    2. How to embed videos in WordPress without a plugin
      1m 45s
    3. How to embed real tweets into any WordPress post
      2m 15s
    4. Create your own Photoshop shortcut cheat sheet
      1m 28s
  6. 17m 53s
    1. How to create better Facebook cover photos
      4m 31s
    2. How to use keyboard shortcuts in WordPress
      2m 47s
    3. How to add Apple touch icons to your website
      5m 27s
    4. How to use Font Awesome in design applications
      5m 8s
  7. 8m 50s
    1. How to create your own pixel grids
      4m 25s
    2. How to sample colors from anywhere
      2m 5s
    3. How to create diagonal guides in Illustrator
      2m 20s
  8. 13m 48s
    1. How to round individual corners on Illustrator shapes
      3m 21s
    2. How to use Camera Raw as a Smart Filter
      4m 8s
    3. How to use the Shape Builder Tool to recolor artwork
      3m 34s
    4. How to use "Align to Key Object" in Illustrator
      2m 45s
  9. 8m 26s
    1. Exploring the Kuler Panel in Illustrator CC
      1m 50s
    2. How to draw awesome shapes with the tilde key
      2m 12s
    3. How to reset your bounding box in Illustrator
      2m 6s
    4. How to change your artboard color in Illustrator
      2m 18s
  10. 23m 19s
    1. How to use Photoshop and Illustrator to write CSS
      4m 1s
    2. How to create scalable rounded rectangles in Illustrator
      4m 16s
    3. How to use the fill commands in Photoshop
      3m 52s
    4. How to accurately space objects in Illustrator
      2m 5s
    5. Ten WordPress plugins that you should know
      9m 5s
  11. 9m 41s
    1. Unlocking background layers in Photoshop
      1m 8s
    2. Using opacity shortcuts in Photoshop
      1m 50s
    3. Using Illustrator's Glyphs Panel for icon fonts
      3m 15s
    4. Creating flexible buttons in Illustrator
      3m 28s
  12. 6m 31s
    1. Locking artwork in Illustrator
      2m 5s
    2. Five free fonts for your next project
      2m 0s
    3. Improving the SEO of your Muse website
      2m 26s
  13. 17m 7s
    1. Fitting content into your InDesign frames
      2m 37s
    2. Setting up your own Autocorrect in InDesign
      2m 33s
    3. Drawing complex shapes in Illustrator
      3m 14s
    4. Using the snapshots feature in Photoshop
      4m 40s
    5. Creating awesome product shots with Placeit
      4m 3s
  14. 18m 10s
    1. How to find free stock photos online
      1m 55s
    2. Using the transform command in Illustrator
      4m 14s
    3. Five tools for wireframing & mockups
      7m 36s
    4. How to convert videos into GIFs using Photoshop
      4m 25s
  15. 16m 10s
    1. Using PNG Hat to export Photoshop assets
      4m 56s
    2. How to setup two-step authentication in WordPress
      3m 50s
    3. Analyzing the speed of your website
      2m 19s
    4. How to create beveled text in Illustrator
      5m 5s

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