Designing Design Tools

Gleb Sabirzyanov

Indie Maker

I specialize in design but unlike many of you who are freelance or in-house, I design and develop products for designers. (Yes, it is very meta.) I’m a full-time Figma plugin maker, and I want to inspire others to start a meta side project as well!Making something for others in your area of expertise is a great way to start a side-hustle. You scratch your own itch: solve a problem you are facing every day, automate a boring task, or create a resource you wish existed when you were starting out. Chances are, thousands of specialists like you are having the same problem. If you design and develop a solution for it, you not only can help yourself, but many others.That’s what made me interested in building plugins for Figma. I’ve been a user almost since it just launched. I also answered more than 4000 questions about Figma in the online community I started. So I know every single pain people have when using Figma. And so many of my and other users’ pains can be solved by building a plugin or another resource.Since you are an expert in the problem, you know exactly how much value the solution will create, how much it will cost, and probably you already have a basic idea of how it’s going to work. The key here is to not overthink, don’t try to make it ideal. My plugins are super janky and use a ton of hacks so nothing breaks but they get the job done and that’s the main thing.

Gleb has design background and development skills. He uses them to build digital tools that empower creatives because wants everyone to be able to express themselves creatively.Right now he is focused on building plugins and other resources for Figma (a collaborative design tool in the browser). He is also running a couple of online Russian Figma-related communities with thousands of people. So he is quite an expert in questions regarding Figma, knowing every possible hack and feature in the tool. The plugins and resources Gleb made are installed and used by thousands of people.Website: https://gleb.sexy/

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