Thursday, November 21, 2013

A Few (Tech-y) Favorites

Lately I've found some awesome apps, fonts, and other fun things that have been both making me more productive and helping me have more creative fun, and I thought I'd round up a few of them here tonight just in case they help someone else, too!

Favorite Fonts

Anything Typwriter

I really only use fonts in scrapbooking when I print my journaling, and ever since I started printing my Project Life journaling cards on my computer (I did a video on that for Two Peas earlier this year), typewriter fonts have been my go-to. I've been using a mix of (mostly) Traveling Typewriter and (a little) American Typewriter (it came with my Mac), but I've also been wishing for a script typewriter font, as well. After a little searching I came across Script 12 Pitch, but with a $25 price tag I just wasn't quite ready to pull the trigger on the purchase. Then I magically stumbled upon this site filled with vintage typewriter fonts, all free!

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See that Olympia Script font? It's my new favorite! The others are all gorgeous, too, and all made by typing on actual vintage typewriters, then scanning the results in and creating a font.

Favorite Apps

VSCO Cam 

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I thought that Pic Tap Go was my favorite photo editing app until I discovered VSCO Cam! If you're getting a bit bored with the filters in Instagram, then you'll definitely want to check out this little gem. It's free and comes with a basic set of filters and a full editing suite, and you can purchase more filter packs in-app. The best deal there is the $5.99 pack that gives you all of them in one shot- I think that offer is for a limited time, but I'm not sure how long.

Mint

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Keshet Starr linked this one up on her blog several months ago, and every day I could just hug her for it! I was using an old and clunky version of Microsoft Money before this, but now I don't have to remember a million passwords for my accounts, and all of my bank, credit card, and retirement transactions are downloaded automatically. The app (and its web counterpart) also has budgeting features, bill reminders, and so many other great financial tools built right in. This one is also free, though it would be worth downloading even if it were a paid app!

30/30

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Before this app I often used the timer on my iPhone to set a certain amount of time to work on a task. With 30/30, though, I can plan out a whole series of tasks, or even a few tasks that rotate on a continuous loop, and the app will alert me when the time is up for each and prompt me to start on the next one. My favorite right now is to set the timer for 45 minutes of housework and then 15 minutes of scrapbooking (or vice versa if I have a lot of assignments to finish) and let it run for the whole day when I'm home on the weekends. I'm always amazed at how much more I get done, and I love that it reminds me to take little breaks here and there from the big tasks.

Wunderlist

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Hand in hand with a good productivity timer is an organized to-do list. Wunderlist (which also has a web component that syncs with the app) is both pretty and totally useful at the same time. You can have many different lists, assign due dates and sub-tasks easily, schedule repeating tasks, and the star the most important items on each list and filter just to see those items all in one spot. So much functionality- and this one is free, too!

Favorite Photo Editing Tool

VSCO Film for Lightroom

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Lightroom is still my favorite photo editor ever, and the VSCO Film presets (from the same company that makes the VSCO Cam app) make it even better! They work in much the same way as the Replichrome presets that I fell in love with a couple of months ago, except that VSCO has a much broader range of films available, including some instant and slide films that I've fallen in love with. I love the ease of the digital camera, but I've always been partial to the color, contrast, and depth that film photos have. VSCO Film brings that loveliness to digital photography, and I adore it!

And now I want to know- what are some of your tech-y favorites lately?