I decided to stick with the original picture for the home page. I also decided to make some changes to the design. I was not feeling the boxes for the header and footer, so I removed the shapes. I also changed the header/navigation to the green. I also adjusted the filters a bit.
The other change was to add a description to the Homepage. This was recommended by my professor so that search engines would have some data to pick up. The next step was to lay out the colors in Dreamweaver, which is a little overwhelming. I used a “starter page” which is like a layout template to get you going. Here’s the link to the first stage of building the actual site. I am a little intimidated as to how I am going to get the same filter effects for this page, but I am just going to go with basics and see what I can build on.
Well, in an effort to catch myself up there will be a series of posts as I move towards catching myself up in this class.
This week’s lesson covered stock photos and web design mistakes. Often you go to a big company’s website, or corporate literature and see these images of business people. I doubt most people think about where these pictures come from. A lot of times, I just assumed that company’s would have to have some sort of a photo shoot to help create their latest campaign or literature. This is what fashion retailers do, but now I wonder if companies like Comcast just get these images from these stock photo sites like Gettyimages.com or shutterstock.com.
We had to read about bad web design and the biggest take away for me was that aesthetics do not mean a web site is good. Being able to get the information you want from a site is what makes it good. An example is the website for Blue Bell Ice Cream.
When I first went to the site, I thought it was pretty. I liked the way it looked. But it is hard to navigate because things are not clearly labeled – so you do not know your options. You have to hover over things, which is referred to as “Mystery Meat Navigation”, to figure out where to go. The problem is that unless you study the site or write out a key for yourself, you don’t remember what the compass links to versus the two identical ice cream containers. The point is that you cannot sacrifice function for looks.
I am obsessed with Pinterest! I know this has probably been around awhile, but it is a new discovery for me. I love collecting images – I’ve done it since childhood. I’d flip through magazines (Elle and Vogue) and cut out pictures of models or clothes I thought were beautiful. I learned to draw from these pictures, trying to make portraits of the models. I would trace an outline of their faces and then practice shading – until I eventually forced myself to practice without tracing.
Even as an adult I have a cork board in my home “office” with magazine clippings that I’ve collected – I might like the way light is reflected in an ad for a vase or the art direction of a high end fashion ad. I have folders filled with things that are inspiration for ideas I want to work on.
Pinterest makes this so much easier! I often find things online that I bookmark or download the image to a folder in my computer. Now with a click on the “pin it” button that Pinterest had me add to my browser bar I can add it and group it according to interest! For instance, I am obsessed with tiles right now because I want to create a “backsplash” in my kitchen. I want something beautiful and creative, so i have been collecting images and created a “tiles” board on Pinterest!
I feel like a total ass for turning this project in soooo late, but I did it!
I learned a lot quickly about using Illustrator with this project. I had to create 3 images from the scissors I drew in my earlier blog. The images are close up of various parts of the scissors, so that you may or may not be able to recognize that they are scissors.
I spent the most time on the first image (artboard). Coloring in the black was sooooo hard at first, but then as I moved to the next board I realized how I could make things much easier just reducing things to shapes. When you are used to pen and paper and paint and charcoal for drawing, its daunting to figure out how to make what you do translate over into a computer program. But the second board made me realize that the fundamentals are the same. Reduce the images to shapes and build on that. By the time I got to the third board I felt way more comfortable and was able to maneuver through much faster. Well…here is my first project using Adobe Illustrator…