Although fun and inspiring, design conferences can be rather expensive; luckily, one can easily find much amazing content from some of the world’s best design conferences available online.

There is no reason not to take some time out of your busy schedule to watch and listen to what the experts and thought leaders have to share.

Whether you’re looking for inspiration or insight, these 8 inspiring talks can encourage you to step out of your comfort zone, help you to experiment with your design solutions and explore and enrich your work.

Here are some amazing presentations on topics of interest to every designer.

Some of these inspirational videos might not be the most recent talks, but the message delivered is equally important.  

Jeffrey Zeldman: 10 Commandments Of Web Design

A website should be an entertaining experience, and that’s often overlooked as it is very easy to get caught in technical details. The founder of A List Apart Magazine talks about ten commandments of web design.

Thou shalt entertain. Thou shalt iterate. Love thy reader as thyself.

Having less than 10 seconds to keep a visitor on your website is challenging enough for any designer who wishes to create an inspiring project.

From Zeldman’s talk, delivered at An Event Apart Austin (2013), you can learn or be reminded of those small things that make the difference between a good and an excellent website.


Don Norman: Three Ways Good Design Makes You Happy

While the design is about function, it is also about form and emotions. Another one of the inspiring talks is the one by Don Norman who talks about the relationship between emotions and good design, focusing on three emotional cues that good design should evoke. On a subconscious level, these concepts do change how people think and feel about their experience.

He also explores the information processing of the human’s brain, so, for instance, people buy things not only for its functionality but for a certain deeper reason that resonates with their life philosophy.

This 12-minute talk can help you to rethink whether your design interacts with real people’ needs and experience.


Susan Weinschenk: Top 10 Things Every Designer Needs To Know About People

If you want to explore the relationship between people and design further, you might be interested in listening to Susan Weinschenk’s talk, who has over 30 years of experience as a behavioral psychologist. 

Susan has picked ten important things crucial for learning more about people’s online behavior from her book 100 Things Every Designer Needs To Know About People.  This talk will inspire you to build engaging websites and products that meet the people’ needs and the way they think, work and play. 


Susan Weinschenk: Vision, Hearing & the Brain

Another great talk from Susan delivered at Smashing Conf NYC 2015 brings into focus the psychological aspect of design, where she explores how end users interact with the design.

She applied her research to explore the importance of peripheral vs. central vision, the emotional influence of shapes and more, showing why and how designers could use this instinctive behavior and improve their designs.

Susan shares her top ten most relevant research studies on perception;  get ready to re-examine the user experience side of your design solutions.


Meagan Fisher: The Why and How of Designing for People

What do people want and need? Getting to know your users and bringing them in the focus of the process doesn’t have to be hard or troublesome, it can be a funny, affordable and result-oriented process.

Meagan Fisher talks about the importance of human need, showing how the user-focused approach to design can help you make better decisions, and gather an important piece of information that is based on reality.  


Jinsop Lee: Design for All 5 Senses

Are you designing for your user’s eyes? Jinsop Lee talks about his theory of five-sense design.

It is a fascinating view on how to incorporate other senses into your product, making the experience more pleasing and satisfying. Moreover, it can inspire you to draw many ideas from Lee’s interesting approach.


Mike Monteiro’s Keynote at Interaction 15

Have you ever had a problem with presenting your design solutions to a client? 

Does good design sell itself? Fundamentally, NO.

The truth is that no one knows your design better than you so that no one can explain it better. So, the question is: Do you know how to sell your work?

In this funny talk, you can find out if you are guilty of any of the 13 mistakes designers make when presenting their work to clients.


Steven Johnson: Where do good ideas come from?

Steven Johnson goes back in history to explore where ideas come from, showing that, according to his research, the networking is the key to fostering innovation and creativity, while the right environment for sharing and connecting is fueling the progress.

Steven’s engaging talk on how collaboration is the key to innovation encourages people and organizations to create a climate where they can work openly and creatively together.

Anyone involved in creative industries might experience occupational burnout. A designer can get stuck in the routine, hit a design block, lose perspective and inspiration, or become stagnant. We all act differently. However, we all need to start seeing things from a different, innovative viewpoint.

Check out these 17 web design blogs if you are interested in well-written content on web design, UX, graphic design, UI, the web in general and all things design.

Do you have a favorite talk on the web?

Share with us your inspiring talks in the comments!