Is your website GDPR compliant?

With the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) coming into effect on 25th May 2018, it’s important you know how to make your website GDPR Compliant.

This new law is designed to offer individuals greater protection in respect of their personal data whether as an employee, a customer, a supplier or a potential client. The new law applies to businesses or organisations in the European Union. Those outside the EU who offer goods and services (whether paid or not) to people living within the EU, or monitor their behaviour, must also comply. GDPR becomes the global standard for data protection.

You can use this great checklist to help you get your business ready for the new GDPR regulations:


Website changes

Disclaimer: I am not an expert on GDPR but have made the following changes to clients’ websites following their requests. I have done a lot of my own research and consequently made all of these changes to my site in an effort to be GDPR compliant. I accept no responsibility for any consequences you have following this advice; you should always do your own research. 


What do the regulations mean for your website?

Essentially, you need to be transparent about how you process and use personal and sensitive data.


1. Update privacy and cookies policies

GDPR will mean you’ll need to have clear statements and policies in place with regards to data processing within your business or organisation.

You’ll need to inform your website visitors what sort of data is being collected from them, what it’s used for and how it is stored. Most of this can be covered off in a detailed privacy policy. You should already have one of these on your website so in most cases it will just be a case of updating it.

You should always tailor a privacy policy to your specific business. There are lots of templates out there, but it’s important that the information is all correct and relevant to your website specifically. You can also find mine here to get an idea of the information you need to include.


Google analytics

Here is an extract from a GDPR compliant website privacy policy statement with relation to the use of Google Analytics. It clearly explains what type of data gathering this is (visitor tracking), what it is used for and how to opt out if you wish:

"Like most websites, this site uses Google Analytics (GA) to track user interaction. I use this data to determine the number of people using my site, to better understand how they find and use my web pages and to see their journey through the website.

Although GA records data such as your geographical location, device, internet browser and operating system, none of this information personally identifies you to us. GA also records your computer’s IP address which could be used to personally identify you but Google does not grant us access to this. I consider Google to be a third party data processor.

GA makes use of cookies, details of which can be found on Google’s developer guides. My website uses the analytics.js implementation of GA. User and event data is held on Google servers for 38 months. You can read more about Google Analytics Data Retention here.

Disabling cookies on your internet browser will stop GA from tracking any part of your visit to pages within this website."


Contact and sign-up forms

You need to document your internal policies for processing and erasing the data you keep.


Other privacy policy requirements

You also need to provide users with a way to withdraw consent and purge personal data collected on them; i.e. the ‘Right to Be Forgotten’. The easiest way to do this is to have a dedicated email (, for example) for them to get in contact with you.

You’ll need to appoint a Data Protection Officer for your business who’s job it is to manage these requests alongside other GDPR related admin.

It is also a requirement of GDPR that you verify requests to remove or edit data via email.  The easiest way to manage this is to ask your customers/users to send their email to you using the email account that they subscribed/enquired with so you can verify their identity and right to edit the data you hold.


2. Add a cookies banner to your site

What are cookies?
When you visit a site that uses cookies for the first time, a cookie is downloaded to your browser. The next time you visit that site, your browser will check to see if it has a cookie that is relevant and sends the information contained in that cookie back to the site. The site then ’knows’ that you have been there before. It helps to load your pages faster if it remembers the information from a previous visit. 

Your site is collecting information every time someone visits your site, i.e. cookies (you can turn this off on your browser). To remain transparent under the new GDPR regulations, you need to add a banner to ensure that people are aware of the information that you’re collecting when they are on your site. This should have a link to your updated policies and a continue button.




3. Contact and sign-up forms compliance

People will need to confirm that they have read and agree to your terms and conditions before proceeding to submit the form. It will no longer be acceptable to use pre-populated check boxes (check box already ticked).



Note that the Google re-captcha is not a GDPR requirement but helps to ensure that your new subscribers are real people, not robots.

...for a photo manipulation tutorial

I'm going through a phase of absolutely loving photo manipulation images! There's some absolutely incredible ones out there. Search for them on Youtube for thousands of actually very simply Photoshop edits that look incredible. 

All photomanipulations rely on two main things:

  1. Never directly edit an image - always use masks.
  2. Add elements and interest to compositions by downloading Photoshop brushes, e.g. I found some free Bird Brushes for the image I created here used.

I'm going to go through this image I created today, inspired by one I found on Pinterest:


1. First of all find an high quality image of the Empire State (ES) and an image of some woods with sunlight coming through trees. The sun creates some beautiful shadows and adds some depth to the image. You'll need to either remove the background of the ES image or google 'Empire State building no background'.

Crop the woods image to fit the width of the ES. Don't delete sections!! Create a mask to reduce the width of the image. I then edited the light and colour of the Empire State to complement the woods.


2. Next we want to edit both images so it looks like they're exploding or shattering. Google 'shattered glass photoshop brush'. You can then download them to your Photoshop presets folder found in the application itself. Load these into Photoshop:


4. This is really where the importance of masks comes into play! We are basically removing parts of the image in the shape of the brush you have selected. First select the mask in the Layers window and make sure that Black is in the foreground (found in the on the bottom left of the toolbar).


5. I've changed the colour of the background so it's easier for us to see what we're doing. I've contunied to remove the background, making sure to rotate and change the size of the brush as I go. Swapping the foreground colour to white allows us to show parts of the image. This is how the exploding part on the left has been created.

Now you'll want to select a round brush, with 0% hardness, and start removing the bottom of the ES. The bottom will start loosing it's opacity, allowing us to merge the two images more effectively. Remember again to use a mask! Change the foreground colour to white if you erase too much.


6. I've also shattered the edges of the ES slightly. Now the two images are successfully merged and look like they're shattering. Now to add the detail! I found a moon on google and softened the edges using a round brush with 0% hardness. 


7. Start adding more moons, adding drop shadows and highlights to add depth to the images. For the moons at the bottom (shown here), I also changed the lighting using a Levels mask. I also added a slight dark overlay to add drama.


9. Finally, using a Bird brush I found online (Google 'Bird Photoshop Brush), I added a few birds to the composition and a couple more moons to the top. Changing the sizes of the moons and the birds adds perspective! I also added a radial gradient to the background.




Hope you've enjoyed reading and it inspires you to have a try! Have a happy weekend, L x streamline the design process: tips and tricks

I love being a freelancer because you get to do everything from drawing to full development and design and I even love the business side of it! This does mean, however, that time is money.. literally.


Here's a few shortcuts and tips to streamline and automate the tasks that don't require you spending hours for a great design:



Problem: As designers, we spend (way too many) hours on Pinterest. I love this part of the design process and I actually believe that it's so important for inspiring you. I'll find create a board on Pinterest and download the images to design a moodboard for my client. However, saving each individual picture from your board will take you ages to do manually! 

Solution: downloading the FREE Chrome extension 'Pindown' is a life saver. You simply click the little icon at the top of the board you want and it will download each individual image on that board! AMAZING.


Illustrator scripts

Scripts are a great time-saving tool for designers. There are some amazing free scripts that you can find to solve a manner of Illustrator sins ;) They really can save a huge amount of time and it's well worth searching for ones that can streamline your own process. 'John Wundes' and 'Hiroyuki Sato' are both leading developers in creating great free scripts. Here's a few that I really cannot do without: 

Export each layer as a seperate file

Reset image to horizontal position

Merge overlapping anchors


Photoshop Etiquette


Check out this amazing website, all about the best Photoshop practices: Photoshop Etiquette. Easy-to-read guides, some of the tips may seem obvious but it may get you to actually start implementing some the practices. My favourite few:

- Always use masks for your layers - never edit directly onto a layer.
- Rename all of your layers and group them to keep your Photoshop files clean. This will save time if you re-visit a file months later.

Hope you find something useful here! Hope you have a great week, L x

...for the equipment every graphic designer should have


I officially have a problem when it comes to my drawing equipment and stationary! As a designer, having the right equipment makes your design process so much for enjoyable and efficient. Here's a few of my must-haves!

Hope you find something useful here! Hope you have a great week, L x

...for some online inspiration

I have always loved learning new things, and design really allows me to do this - there's always something new you can find online!

There's a few people that I love spending hours going through their Instagram feeds:
Gracecallidesigns - even if you're not in love with calligraphy as much as I am, Grace is amazing to watch! Something so therapeutic about watching her design.
Kathdavee - Kathyrn created this account as part of a graphic design project for university. She's not actually continuing with it anymore, as she's graduated, but I'd really recommend having a look at her pics.


 People of Print

People of Print

People of print - I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I love these guys! So many great articles about the world of print.
Design Milk - Always a lot of really interesting content! One of my favourite blogs is the 'Deconstructed' series, which goes behind the scenes with a different designer each week.




I absolutely love Youtube - there are some incredible tutorials out there. My favourite channels include:
- Will Paterson
- The Skool Network
- Swerve Designs

Have an explore and let me know if you've found some amazing accounts!

Have a happy Sunday! L x

...for some beautiful websites

Every couple of weeks I love having a look around to check out the amazing work that people are doing - one of my life ambitions is to have a website up there! Here's some interesting ones that I've found over the last couple of weeks:

How cool is this one? I love how interactive the website is, and embraces modern trends, such as, white space and minimal information. I'm not convinced about the body type though - everything else is so modern and fresh and the typewriter font seems like an odd choice for me! What do you think?

Cross Me
Wait til you get the scrolling page! I love how the designers and developers have added another point of interaction for the user that is intuitive but also innovative!

The Heineken: Go Places
This is an incredible example of how brands can embrace digital to push the boundaries of the norm. Go Places is actually an interview for a job with Heinenken! Don't worry you can do it without actually applying for a job. You're taken through an incredible VR with the host and asked a series of questions. Is this the future of the interview process. My outcome was faaaairly accurate:

Have a go yourself and let me know what you get!

Have a happy Sunday! L x

...for branding and website design

I've recently starting doing some freelance branding & website design. I absolutely love helping clients bring their visions to life! I signed up to a while ago when I was looking for some Illustrator scripts and I now love getting her weekly newsletters. She is a graphic design from the UK but now helps female entrepreneurs become successful freelance graphic designers. Even though a lot of the resources are for full-time freelancers, she has so many tips on how to successfully run projects with clients, including: using the project management tool, Asana (which I now love), what to include in your contract, and a few design tips. Check her out!

Have a happy Sunday! L x appreciate some beautiful print

I was recently invited to London Fashion Week by a client. It is now run in Brewer Street Car Park, and the LFW team did an incredible job ensuring that every aspect of the event was beautiful and premium - including the LFW preview book we were given on arrival:

I have always been fascinated with digital design and the endless possibilities that technology can create for a brand now, but sometimes there's nothing like finding an old book in a vintage shop or picking up a magazine that has been beautifully designed to make you appreciate the beauty that print can bring. Check out 'People of Print' on Facebook for lots of amazing articles & interviews.

Have a happy Sunday! L x

...for a beautiful camera

I volunteered in a Oxfam shop for a couple of months and found some amazing treasures! Here's a throwback to a time when I fell in love:

Volunteering in an Oxfam shop is proving to be an exercise in self-restraint! However, I saw this camera in the shop, and immediately fell in love. I tried to stay objective, however, and do some research before I gave in. I nearly bought an SLR for Christmas but they are so expensive and I'm very much a novice. This AV-1 Canon, includes the original box and all the original manuals for an incredible £12!

Researching the camera prior to purchase was very important. For many of these vintage cameras, the cost of the film and developing the pictures is the expensive part. Luckily for me, not only does the camera have some great reviews, but the films (35mm) are fairly cheap and Boots will develop the pictures! Ideal.

So when a girl came into the shop asking whether it worked, I was terrified that I had waited too long. She didn't buy it because it was 'untested', but I immediately ran off to grab my card and bought it right there and then! All cameras sold in Oxfam shops are tested by a professional before being put on sale. 'Untested' means that it is in good working condition, but the photos weren't developed so they can't guarantee that it works. My manager said that she would give me a full refund if it doesn't work, but fingers crossed it does! Charity shops really have some amazing gems, if you're willing to dig a little.

Have a happy Sunday! L x

Edit: It works beautifully!

...for beautiful interiors

Tom Dixon has been one of my favourite brands for a while now. His products are always elegant and beautifully designed, with perfect injections of bold metallics. It was just announced that Tom Dixon has been sold by its Swedish owners to a British investment company. Hopefully, this won't affect the design as Tom Dixon himself remains in a similar position as before.

Here are some beautiful images from the Tom Dixon store recently opened in Manhattan (his first showroom outside London):


I recently saw his showcase at the Clerkenwell Design Week, where he had decked out a beautiful church! It was incredible. I was literally in heaven!

I'd love to hear what you think :) Have a happy Sunday! L x

...for a little culture

My godmother bought me a Friends subscription to the Royal Academy for my birthday last year and I loveeee it! It allows you and a guest to attend any of the exhibitions free of charge - and you don't have to pre-book.

The Ai Weiwei exhibition was running from 19 September-13 December 2015 and I loved it. The collection is thought-provoking, poignant and extraordinary. I think the success of this exhibition also lies with the message is clear and simple, appealing to everyone.

1. Straight, 2009-2012

After the devasting Sichuan earthquake in China, Ai Weiwei set about uncovering the truth behind the number of students that become victim to the poorly erected schools. The Chinese government had tried to hide the true number, which Weiwei discovered to be more than five thousand school children. Since the discovery of their corruption, Weiwei has undergone much intense scruinity by the chinese authorities and was incarcerated for 81 days in 2011.

Straight is composed of 150 tons of steel rebar, which Ai Weiwei retrieved from the sites of the collapsed school. He then spent many years straightening each and every one of them, producing this amazing piece of art in provokes an overwhelming feeling of loss for China.

2. Dropping a Han Dynasty Urn, 1995

In this piece, Ai Weiwei has captured the act of dropping a Han dynasty urn (worth approximately $1m). He is seen with the same facial expression, and one of mild disinterest. I think the piece portrays a clear message in such a clever way. What is the real value of the urn? He is defying against his Chinese heritage in such a blatant way.

Coloured Vases, 2015

Priceless urns were painted over to question where the real value of an object comes from.

3. Bicycle Chandelier, 2015

A beautiful display of an object that is ingrained into the Chinese modern day culture.

Hope you love them too! Have a happy Sunday! L x