At Tuts+ we always want to provide useful material to our readers. We listen and we give. And we know that Sketch is a hot topic right now. Recently we published 9 Sketch Features You Should Be Using and Sketch for Beginners: Design a Login Form Interface. But we want to offer even more, so this roundup will introduce you to some of the most useful resources available for Sketch.
Before we go any further, here are some general links which you’ll find useful for keeping up to date with the (very active) Sketch community:
- Bohemian Coding Sketch: your first stop
- The Bohemian Coding Blog: updates and news about Sketch and other products made by Bohemian Coding.
- Sketch News: Sketch’s official newsletter. Direct to your inbox every two weeks!
- @Sketchapp: Keep in touch with the Bohemian guys on Twitter
- Sketch official page on Facebook and the official group. Share tips and resources with other Sketchers.
Adding new features and improvements to Sketch is as simple as installing any of the plugins currently available. Here I’ll list some examples I like and consider most useful.
Installing a Sketch plugin is as straightforward as double-clicking the
.sketchplugin file. To learn more take a look at Plugins Basics on Bohemian Coding’s own site.
Tip: Another option is to use Sketch Toolbox, a user-friendly plugin manager for Sketch. It will give you an easier way to install and discover plugins (Requires OSX 10.9 or newer).
I've been an active user of Adobe Fireworks for a long, long time. And the Orange Commands extension created by Ale Muñoz made my life much easier.
Ale is a truly amazing guy and his contribution to Sketch's community is huge! An example of this: Sketch Commands, a port of his previous Orange Commands. With Sketch Commands you can automate a number of processes within the program: automatic export, match dimensions, duplicate content, etc.
Style Inventory for Sketch
It could be a good idea to install Sketch Commands together with Style Inventory for Sketch. Style Inventory collates all your used visual styles (such as colors) and helps merge similar styles to prevent inconsistency in your work.
Sketch Measure allows us to add notes about measurements and object properties within the canvas.
Adding notes like this helps you present document details in a quick and convenient way. This plugin is especially useful if you are preparing a file for someone, or when you're working with other people.
Have you heard of Slicy for PSD documents? This plugin lets us do something similar by just renaming our layers and exporting them automatically as separate files. Sketch-slicy can be downloaded from the official repository where its author also recommends Sketchflow as an alternative. And if you want another very good alternative, you should really try Sketch Generator.
Sketch Icon Stamper Plugin
Dynamic Button for Sketch
The biggest problem when using Photoshop for UI design is the complete lack of fluidity. This is one good reason for designers leaving Photoshop as their tool of choice and moving to, say, Sketch.
Dynamic Button for Sketch enables us to create buttons which will automatically fit to the text contained within them. Not clear? Take a look at the video to understand exactly what it does.
Tip: Don't forget the Sketch Plugin Directory. You will find an updated list of available plugins for Sketch, hosted on GitHub. There are many more plugins available on the list that could be useful for you!
Resources and Freebies
If you're looking for a place to download freebies, templates or whatever, you're in luck! Here are some of the coolest websites dedicated to Sketch.
Sketch App Sources
A must have. Sketch App Sources offers a bunch of downloadable files and useful extra information including tutorials, articles, links to plugins and more. Most resources available for Sketch can be found here.
By no means Sketch-specific, but if you are looking for even more resources you can visit Dribbble and use the search with tags like "sketch" and "freebie". You'll be amazed what you uncover.
You can even search Dribbblers who list Sketch App as one of their skills.
Sketch resources directly to your inbox. Twice a month. Interested? Sketch Tricks
Maybe you're looking for something a bit different. What about regular screencasts with tips and tricks for Sketch?
Check this out: Sketch Casts, a weekly screencast about Sketch.
This is for advanced users, mainly developers.
Design+Code is not about Sketch specifically but provides excellent learning materials by Meng To. It covers many different topics but also talks about work and daily usage with Sketch in a very practical way.
Sketch Shortcuts; all the default menu keyboard shortcuts at a glance.
Ok, You’re Looking for Even More...
If you've come this far and still want more, how about some extra links with articles and tutorials written by other Sketch users? I've selected some of the best available:
- Sketch Tutorial 01, by Sebastien Gabriel. An excellent advanced tutorial on creating an icon using Sketch.
- 7 Tips for Sketch users, by Nick Woodman. Filled with his personal experience with Sketch and best practices when using the application.
- Design with Sketch, by Meng To. Perhaps one of the first designers who started publishing interesting content on Sketch.
- Harnessing Vector Awesomeness in Sketch, by Peter Nowell. An article about dealing with vectors and complex shapes in Sketch.
- Sketch Resources, Sketch articles and resources, curated by Lee Simpson from ustwo.
That is All, For Now
Having soaked up all those links, you should now have enough material to spice up and personalize your Sketch workflow.
Do you think I've forgotten anything important? Have you already used one the plugins mentioned? Share your experiences and questions with other users in the comments section!