Sharing Sketch files with Github

sketchgithub

While we don’t dictate tools in the Neo NYC office, a large number of us have long moved to using Sketch, the vector design app from Bohemian Coding. One struggle has been sharing Sketch files. Dropbox handles them OK, but last time we tried, Google Drive and Box.net did not. But given the way Sketch saves, with Dropbox it can be very problematic to have multiple people open the same Sketch file at the same time. Hence our interest in using Github.

Today we ran a quick test to see how Github handles Sketch files, not least because we want to explore using Github to manage design assets, and I’m pleased to say it worked without a hitch.

To be explicit, we created a repo, pushed a Sketch file, had a collaborator pull the repo down then open and edit the file. After they pushed their changes, we pulled and tried to open the file. It all worked properly. Obviously I don’t expect Github to be able to handle merge conflicts, but at least the team will be aware that version-splitting has happened and can make decisions accordingly.

Related: Elepath’s use of Github for their design assets

  • Sagi Shrieber

    Hey guys, quick question.
    You said it cant handle merge conflicts, but can it handle merge at all?

    i.e. If I’m working on Page 3 in the document making a red square, and the other designers is working at the same time on the same document in Page 5 making a green triangle, Then I push to master branch, then he pushes to branch and we merge, would the file now update to have a red square on Page 3 and a green triangle on page 5?

    Thanks!

  • I haven’t tried it but I seriously doubt it. Code can be merged because it’s text, and merge conflicts are relatively easy to spot and fix. But how would that work with a binary file? Github would need to intelligently understand the sketch file format, which it doesn’t.

  • Sagi Shrieber

    If the team over @ Github would find a way to do this I would put up a statue of their Octocat maskot on my desk and give it a wet kiss every fu#$% day 🙂

  • We also recently changes to Github for all our design files. We had some big psd files, but solved it with installing https://git-lfs.github.com