Evaluation

Evaluation

For this brief we were asked to research for, plan and build a working website to promote ourselves as designers insuring that we also build up a good knowledge of digital media and what forms it came in. I started of by conducted a lot of research on other designers and design agencys websites and also looked at forms of digital media that are popular, I looked at why these forms are so popular and investigated how it may have hailed the audience. Looking at things like pinterest which is very similar to a portfolio site as it presents a lot of work done by creatives, I felt like upon using this the layout felt familiar and easy to navigate by scrolling down and have the work appear with a small caption underneath, with pinterest the theme is very clever as it looks like polaroids and you can pin them to your board there for making it seem slightly more lifelike that a usual website.
I took inspiration from this when creating the plans for my website.I wanted to have my pieces displayed in a grid form that you can scroll down and they load as you scroll, I wanted to include a small caption underneath explaining the work, this has also made it very simple for me to add work as I go without having to change layout or coding.

Having looked at Pearl Fishers site it gave me inspiration to make my webpage more imagery/work based than creating something that was wordy and lengthy, I insured even my about page was imagery based and the same with the contact page.
I decided to make my website in Wix, Although I had given WordPress a go with the time we had I felt I could create something of a higher quality and easier to make something that would have no glitches and would be easy for the audience to see.
I think this is something that definitely hails an audience as it means that they can use the website quickly and effectively however it was important for me to add a  small caption to insure that there was some information on the origin of the pieces as it would be awfully confusing for some of the pieces to understand how it will be used.
A few of the pieces on my site are illustrative and heavily more of a fine art piece,I wanted to include this to almost show im not a “one trick pony” and to show that I can create flexible work but still sticking some what to style I create which is something modern and slick and in some cases slightly abstract.I feel it is important balance to have in your work to have some sort of style but also to insure that you work looks flexible and looks as if you can create work that fits different audiences and projects without steering to far away from how you like to design.Something that was also very important to me when designing my site was not to have to much distraction from the work. I had a feeling that a busy header and decorative typefaces would distract from the work and I think this is probably a common thought in designers as the websites that I felt were effective were the most simple ones where the work was the main element in the website.
I used a very simple and minimalist type face and a simple box in the grey and white colour scheme I chose for my website, I encompassed this within a really simple box shape just to make it more noticeable and to separate it from the rest of the page. After seeing the header itself I thought it all looked a bit to washed out and although I was going for simple I still wanted my website to make an impact,I also felt that the first webpage didn’t have enough direction and felt as if people would not know to scroll down as the first thing you see was the header. I decided to add a bright blue – green arrow underneath, I did this but keeping to the theme used the most simplistic shape I could, I strived to create something that was very directional and navigable but also still very simple and effective, reflecting my style of design.I then went on to create the other pages in the same style and I applied the same header to every page to keep a common theme and good continuity through out.
I also made a continuos effort to use symbols more than words and letter, especially for the contact page, I did this because having researched into app icons and other modern digital media I decided that consumers are more likely to understand an icon, Also being that graphic design and photography are both visual things I thought it was very important that I consider how it would be used and portrayed by the consumer and this makes it more accessible to people who find it hard to understand a lot of wordy buttons.I have also included buttons to link straight to my social media pages,Where by I will make social medias that include my design work. This is a brilliant type of digital media for designers, Its a good way to get your design circulating and get work, It is also a good way to hail your audience as people will link in and out with the buttons and links to see your whole portfolio and possibly contact you for work.
In regards to the accessibility of my site I wanted to section my portfolio of to make it more simple for my audience to navigate. I will have sections to separate Advertising,Branding,photography and then just full portfolio this will again make it easier for an audience to move there way around the website and see only what they are interested in.
I am really happy with my final website, I think it fulfils the brief effectively and works really well. It is clear, effective and I feel it has a really nice flow from page to page.I have done research into digital media and also social media as I feel these are both extremely important to understand as a designer with the up and coming digital age, it means we keep up to date and modern as designers.

Advertisements

Building ~ Design Decisions

TEMPLATE

I decided to start my website off by using a “start from scratch” template as I wanted create something really unique and not use a template that we easy to copy as having some thing generic was a concern of mine when I decided to use wix.

Screen Shot 2016-03-22 at 13.53.25.png

Screen Shot 2016-03-22 at 13.53.37.png

 

HEADER

I started of by making a header, I knew I wanted this to include not particuly a logo as every logo I tried had to much detail so I just created a nice type that included my name and a full stop, I feel the capitals and the full stop felt bold and looked more like I was making a solid statement, As I wanted to use grey and white I did not want it to look to washed out so I decided to have quite a large stroke around the type face.Screen Shot 2016-03-22 at 14.59.20.pngScreen Shot 2016-03-22 at 13.57.48.png

I decided to use this typeface (Code Light) as it looks simple and modernist although I had to put it into illustrator and change the leading slightly to give me the feel I wanted.
I decided to add a dose of colour I would add this bright arrow, I also felt like this would create more direction in my piece so that people would know to scroll down, I added a really simple, modernist arrow to stick to the theme of my website and my style as a designer.Screen Shot 2016-03-24 at 11.19.57.png

I then created really simple buttons using a similar typeface called futura to keep the same theme with very simple separators to make it more clear that they are separate buttons.Screen Shot 2016-03-23 at 12.55.52.png

I made a separate drop down list to have the sections of my portfolio as I mentioned I have done this to make my website alot more accessible.

Screen Shot 2016-03-23 at 13.10.11.png

I have added this bar the the top of my page to give a very consistent title through out the site, I thought this was important after looking at other websites that have very consistent elements from page to page and it gives more of a flow to the website.

SLIDESHOW

I created a slide show on the front page inspired by the Pearl Fisher website that fades really slowly,I did this with the animate tab on wix. I decided I wanted a really soft fade from image to image as it gives a nice feel to the website, also I feel if you have something moving on the website it feels less static, these are the images I includes into the slideshow, although this is mainly my work just to give a hint for this with the audience I have also included a quote that really inspires me as a designer as it just adds another element to the piece.Screen Shot 2016-03-23 at 13.28.32Screen Shot 2016-03-23 at 13.28.37Screen Shot 2016-03-23 at 13.28.49Screen Shot 2016-03-23 at 13.28.41Screen Shot 2016-03-23 at 13.28.27

BOTTOM BAR AND SELECTION OPTION

This is also included on my home page, underneath the slideshow.
The images are actually links/buttons which makes another way to take you to the pages of my portfolio. I decided to add a short description, I made a very informed decision to make a concerted effort not to make my website to wordy.I wanted to just include a small bit of type to make a clear understanding to the audience so they can get even more information on what I do.

Screen Shot 2016-03-23 at 13.30.52.png

FOOTER

Screen Shot 2016-03-23 at 13.38.38.png

This footer will show on every page of the site.I have included my name, title and also my email address.I think when it comes to people contacted you this is usually the most professional way of communicating with clients.
I also included links to all my design accounts for social medias so that people can contact me through these medias and I can also keep them up to date with my new and upcoming work making them feel more included.

CONTACT

I have included the words “feel free to say hello” I felt this comes across more friendly and something I definitely wanted to portray in this page was an approachable feel.I decided from my research to use icons for this part of the website as they are more clear than using the words. I feel this works really nicely and keeps it simple and very easy to read for an audience.This also includes the footer which is on every page so this would show the social medias to be able to look at aswell.

Screen Shot 2016-03-24 at 11.02.19.png

ABOUT

I again kept this really simple and darkened the background picture to enable the type to be seen more clearly.This picture behind reflects me as a designer, I always listen to music when I design something hence the headphone in the image and it also reflects the creative process by including a book (research) and a sketch/mind map (development/ideas) and then just the corner f my laptop to show making the final design. I included the line to separate it and also to carry on the colour theme.
Screen Shot 2016-03-24 at 11.27.17.png

PORTFOLIO

When you press on the “work” button it gives you an option to see a preview of the work as shown below, I feel seeing a small picture gives you more to decide what you would want to look at.The image and shapes can be clicked on to get to the pages or alternatively use the drop down menu.

Screen Shot 2016-03-24 at 11.44.54.png

PORFOLIO LAYOUT

This layout is inspired by other digital media and the way I felt that worked with the audience. I mainly took inspiration from pinterest as I wanted the audience to feel as if it was familiar for them so that they found it simple to look at.

Screen Shot 2016-03-24 at 12.03.16Screen Shot 2016-03-24 at 12.03.23Screen Shot 2016-03-24 at 12.03.29

Accessibility

Having something in the public domain gives you the responsibility (especially as a designer) to insure that what you create and how you promote yourself is easily accessible for a wide audience.I have been thinking about who might be excluded in my website and how I could prevent this.

My first thought is for deaf people and how my site might work for them, luckily my site doesn’t include anything that would need to heard so I’m not sure that this would be something I need to think about with my process.

Screen Shot 2016-03-18 at 17.36.32.png

I thought again of who would be excluded with my work would be visually impaired and blind communities.I feel as if this is a difficult element to consider with web because being blind is a large impairment and with having web design being a mainly visual thing it is quite difficult. Personally I’m not sure if this is an element I need to consider as design is primarily visual although having looked at this I feel it will make me have a consideration for this in further work.

Screen Shot 2016-03-16 at 15.30.18.png

I think this is something I could put into some of my print work in the future and also if the opportunity came up where someone visually impaired needed to understand my work and what I do then I would create a document in brail explaining my work individually although something that I could include is a speech button meaning that anyone that can use the computer could play the speech on my website for the computer to read the text on my page, this may help and includes a different and interesting element to the website.

Screen Shot 2016-03-16 at 16.04.10.png

Digital Media ~ Apps & Icons

I wanted to have a look into some apps and the icons they use, Mainly I wanted to look at this to gain some information about how we look at icons Vs how we see words.
This is an attempt to work out for my website how much I wanted to use simple icons appose to words and labels.
Icons and apps are becoming SO popular and SO accessible now that they are becoming more and more convenient.
I decided I would go online and look at some exciting app icons and compare this to if you just used the word instead.

Screen Shot 2016-03-22 at 13.25.36.png
Clock

This icon shows a clock, I feel if you said the word clock to someone this would be very subjective, you might think of a grand father clock, pocket watch, wrist watch or maybe a large wall clock, Although these do not seem like very substantial changes but when you are trying to communicate a message, I feel because of the shape of this clock and the little lump on top it looks like an alarm, This is something that is almost impossible to communicate just with a label,Even the word alarm would connote a lot of different things for a user, I feel also we an icon people get used to seeing icons and it becomes familiar there for insuring we understand it.

Screen Shot 2016-03-22 at 13.26.19.png
Volume

This is an icon most of us are very familiar with from our television remotes to our phones and computers this is very widely used, The word volume is another one that really does mean a lot of different things.

 

Screen Shot 2016-03-22 at 13.26.41.png
Power

Again another familiar one the work could mean a lot of different things. This thing with this example is that it does not as a symbol actually signify another to do with power or turning something on, It is simply something we have learnt from on TV remote of computer that we now recognise so we know how to use it.

Conclusion

From this research I have concluded exactly what I thought, Icons are a lot more effective than using labels or words.People have come to recognise shapes and colours so that icons can now be used for a wide range of things.
This is something I will use in my final piece and insure that I can effectively navigate my website with my icons.

Branding Ideas

This idea is based upon the ink splatter/stroke. I felt this would be something good to incorporate into my branding design as I mentioned before it connotes a creative and less digital feel but I felt I did not want to have a completely illustrative looking brand as this doesn’t portray my work effectively.
I decided to add some more slick and modern typefaces.
These are the finals I came up with.

Screen Shot 2016-03-18 at 18.06.22.pngScreen Shot 2016-03-18 at 18.06.30.pngI feel after creating these I think a more slick look is a better that the arty hand rendered especially for a logo.I personally think the first one is really effective,I think this would work really nicely mainly because the modern and clean typeface with arty stroke behind the lettering.I really like this although after looking at it in a website view it did not show the modern and simple theme I was first going for there for I do not think this will fit for my website.

Planning

I created these thumbnails firstly to get an idea of what pages I wanted to include and secondly to insure I had a plan to look back on when knowing what I need to do.
As you can see I plan on using categories to separate my portfolio.I made this decision based on my research of other website where by I found it to hail an audience more effectively by insuring that a website is very easily navigable.I also felt as if this really made sense in regards to new clients as I feel most clients know what work they are looking to get done so it gives them an opportunity to look at the work with the same nature of work as the project they want completed.

(scan 3)

I will be sectioning mine of as
Advertising
Photography
Branding and Full portfolio.

(scan 5)

As a spin to my website I wanted to include some of my own photography, This was because I wanted to portray that everything I create is all bespoke and that for advertising I will complete the photography and not use stock images.I feel this gives an advantage on other designers as most people (especially bigger companies) want something very bespoke and different that there competitors cannot have access to.

Muse

I have been trying to use muse to create a template for my website and see how I felt about it so I tried to create just a simple front page.The main reason I decided to give it ago was because I felt like I could not get an original and bespoke website with muse as you work of a preset template.

First of all I made a plan for the site with the “new site” tab on muse.
I then selected the different pages I wanted to create sections to my portfolio as this is a good way to insure it is easily navigable, this also gives the audience an easy way to look at just the work they are interested in and I feel fills out my website more.
This was inspired by the research I conducted into the studio websites.
Screen Shot 2016-03-18 at 17.50.22.png

I then went on to create the elements that would stay on every page, such as the header and footer, This is gone on the A Master page, this means it will be on every page, this will also count for the buttons although I will have to set it to change on each page so that you can see what page you are on.
For things like buttons there is something called widgets library which is pre-set buttons that you can input into the website, the thing I found with these is that you can edit them to basically fit exactly what you want.I have put this onto the a master to make sure that they stay in the same position on each page and then you just link them to the pages they are for.Screen Shot 2016-03-21 at 10.17.33.png

The buttons collaborate themselves with the page you have made there for you have a button for each page.This is a good feature as it simplifies putting the buttons on.
Screen Shot 2016-03-21 at 10.28.42.png

After now having a look and finding some features in muse I think I have decided that its best to do my website in wix.
I have made this decision as looking at final pieces they are not to different and muse is going to create more clean, and polished design that is easier for an audience to use.
I think using muse will take up extra time to create something with the same quality.