Collaboration is important to designers and developers, but the tedium of making changes and taking input can weigh the process down. InVision’s newest tool for Craft may help cut down on meetings, and get changes pushed out the door faster.
Dubbed ‘Freehand,’ the name isn’t trying to be too clever. It allows you or your team members to draw over a wireframe page or finished design to highlight things you enjoy, or pieces you’d like altered. Two or more users can draw simultaneously, and it works with Sketch and Photoshop images.
Because it’s difficult to create an elegant drawing of a gorgeous wireframe with a trackpad (or a mouse!), Freehand takes your clumsy lines and evens them out. That squiggly, uneven rectangle suddenly becomes a more realistic representation of what you’d probably draw with a pencil if we were all still printing things out on paper.
And when the team has decided it’s time to make changes, Craft shines. Any edits you make are represented in Freehand in real time. If someone isn’t crazy about the background color, just change it and they’ll see the alteration right away. Freehand mirrors what’s in your design environment, so your workflow doesn’t change one bit.
Freehand was designed to be collaborative, but it’s also good for hand-offs. If you’d like a project manager to walk through the board and make edits, they can be given ‘control’ so everyone follows along with their walk-through. (It’s a bit like standing nervously in front of a whiteboard while the boss judges your work.)
Because it’s web-based, Freehand works with any device, so mobile users can still chime in.
It’s easy to see why Freehand works: It has some intrinsic value for remote teams that can’t always find time to sit around a conference table, but makes in-person collaboration much simpler, as well. Freehand is free as part of the Craft suite of tools for InVision, which is available for Sketch and Photoshop.