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The week in GIFs: the one with all the free stuff

With such busy schedules to keep, you might not have had the chance to catch up on this week's biggest design news stories. Lucky for you, we've rounded them up in this handy little list that'll make sure you get to the good stuff, quickly.

01. Apple releases iPad Pro (opens in new tab)

This week, Apple launched its biggest, fastest and priciest Apple iPad yet, the iPad Pro, with artists and designers firmly in its sights. We first got our hands on one, along with the new Apple Pencil, last month and explained what drawing actually feels like on the new device (opens in new tab).

However, if you're more interested in the techie details of the iPad Pro, check out the in-depth review by our sister site Tech Radar (opens in new tab).

02. John Lewis captivates world with Christmas advert (opens in new tab)

The big-budget Christmas ads by UK retailer John Lewis have become the gold standard in festive tear-jerkers, with last year's penguin-themed classic easily making our best Christmas ads of 2014 (opens in new tab) list.

This year the store upped its game in partnership with Age UK to create a heartwarming tale of an old man living on the moon (opens in new tab). It quickly went viral, as did a brilliant parody of the ad made by group of art students for a measly £700 – you can check that out here (opens in new tab).

03. 3D World gives away free book (opens in new tab) (and there's a ton more freebies too...)

This week 3D World magazine offered all Creative Bloq readers a free ebook worth £14.99 for taking part in its CG industry survey (opens in new tab). 'Get Started in 3D' features 178 pages of CG tutorials, tips and techniques to help improve your artwork, plus you'll be placed into a prize draw for a chance to win £250 of Amazon vouchers. Find out how to get your free book here (opens in new tab).

Here's some other free stuff we shared this week that's still available:

04. Baron Fig launches pen revolution (opens in new tab)

The people behind the much-loved Baron Fig notepad (opens in new tab) have spent the last 14 months working on what aims to be the perfect pen for designers, the Squire. Designed with an "underlying philosophy of simplicity, usefulness, and community", it launched on Kickstarter this week and quickly smashed through its funding goal. Find out more about the Squire here (opens in new tab).

05. Clever font helps you learn Japanese (opens in new tab)

One of the UK's top design studios (opens in new tab), johnson banks had made multiple trips to Japan but still couldn't read the language. So they created a unique typeface that combines English language and Japanese script, Phonetikana. Find out how it works here. (opens in new tab)

It only seems like yesterday we were charting the biggest web design trends of 2014 (opens in new tab). But now it's time to round up this year's trends, and first off the block was Cross Web Ideas (opens in new tab)' infographic that rounds up the biggest web design trends of 2015. Does their take on the latest web trends mesh with yours? Check it out here (opens in new tab) and let us know!

07. New app aims to boost your networking prowess (opens in new tab)

Networking is an essential skill that every creative professional needs to master and a new app aims to help with that. Designed to be 'the simplest way to book a 30-minute meeting with anyone, anywhere,' Android and iOS app Thirtymin is an easy way to reach out to people you wouldn't usually get in touch with personally. Learn more about how it can help you here. (opens in new tab)

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The Creative Bloq team is made up of a group of design fans, and has changed and evolved since Creative Bloq began back in 2012. The current website team consists of six full-time members of staff: Editor Kerrie Hughes, Deputy Editor Rosie Hilder, Deals Editor Beren Neale, Senior News Editor Daniel Piper, Digital Arts and Design Editor Ian Dean, and Staff Writer Amelia Bamsey, as well as a roster of freelancers from around the world. The 3D World and ImagineFX magazine teams also pitch in, ensuring that content from 3D World and ImagineFX is represented on Creative Bloq.