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Thread: Here we go again :)

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
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    11

    Here we go again :)

    Ok. I'm back for criticize my site, round 2. lol. You don't have to worry about validating anything, it's been done and passes with flying colors .

    I know I still have the same old logo, but I haven't had time to work on it. I'd like to know about the feel and usability of the site. I know there are two links that do pretty much nothing, it's because I haven't put anything in them. They were more for me to "practice" with. The layout is really simple and boring at the moment, but at the time, I'm not quite sure what I can do to spice it up. This is just a rough draft, seeing what you all think about it.

    So, here it is.

    What can I do to make it better? It HAS to be better than the first one, right? What could be done to "spice" things up, in your opinion of course?

    Thanks everyone,
    Jerred

    P.S. Let's try to keep the nastiness outta the replies this time and keep it neighborly. Poke fun all you want, just don't go the nasty route...

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2005
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    912
    Jerred,
    Underline your links to start with unless there is some distinct reason not too. Make your horizontal navigation a different color than the banner so it doesn't dissolve into the dark blue. You have a lot of CSS and not a lot of page, I don't want to look at the code too much, but there is entirely too much CSS. Try globalizing more. Instead of using <a href="">sdfsdf</a><br> for the vertical nav, use the capbilites of the <UL> tag in combination with CSS. Example:

    Code:
    ul.mainLinks{
         list-style-type:none;
         margin-left:10px;
    }
    
    ul.mainLinks li{
         margin-bottom:3px;
    }
    One nasty comment to add: The blue reminds me of those damn smurfs!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    327
    As far as useability/accessability goes, those dropdown menus are are no-no - keyboard only users are unable to use them, and they generally speaking just plain aren't worth it in my opinion - there are much better navigation solutions out there.

    Also, you might want to consider getting someone to design a template for you - actually, since you offer web design services, get a person who can do graphics and layouts for you, while you manage the scripting side of things. My honest opinion - when you offer web design services, it is important to not only offer something functional, but attractive. No offense, but from what I've seen, your sites aren't really that high on the visually appealing scale. Not neccesarily your fault - Some people have an eye for that sort of thing, and I think your business would benefit from having someone with that eye.

    Just my opinion, hope it helps

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    11
    Quote Originally Posted by Webnerd
    Jerred,
    Underline your links to start with unless there is some distinct reason not too. Make your horizontal navigation a different color than the banner so it doesn't dissolve into the dark blue. You have a lot of CSS and not a lot of page, I don't want to look at the code too much, but there is entirely too much CSS. Try globalizing more. Instead of using <a href="">sdfsdf</a><br> for the vertical nav, use the capbilites of the <UL> tag in combination with CSS. Example:

    Code:
    ul.mainLinks{
         list-style-type:none;
         margin-left:10px;
    }
    
    ul.mainLinks li{
         margin-bottom:3px;
    }
    One nasty comment to add: The blue reminds me of those damn smurfs!
    In my eyes, that wasn't nasty, that was funny as hell... lol. I think that's the funniest comment I've seen about any of my websites...

    As for the CSS, I'm still learning, and I'll get better with all that stuff... I still haven't even studied the globalization thing about CSS, and will probably be next on my list. A lot of my CSS is for all my psuedo pages, as they are all loaded into the page and becomes visible without redirecting anything, just pops up. If I did it all with seperate pages, I'd probably cut about 10-15 lines outta there, I think anyways.

    Quote Originally Posted by invertedpanda
    As far as useability/accessability goes, those dropdown menus are are no-no - keyboard only users are unable to use them, and they generally speaking just plain aren't worth it in my opinion - there are much better navigation solutions out there.

    Also, you might want to consider getting someone to design a template for you - actually, since you offer web design services, get a person who can do graphics and layouts for you, while you manage the scripting side of things. My honest opinion - when you offer web design services, it is important to not only offer something functional, but attractive. No offense, but from what I've seen, your sites aren't really that high on the visually appealing scale. Not neccesarily your fault - Some people have an eye for that sort of thing, and I think your business would benefit from having someone with that eye.

    Just my opinion, hope it helps
    I'm starting to like the drop downs less and less, but it adds just a little to my rather boring page, so...... Instead of pointing me in the direction of finding someone to do a graphical layout for me, why not give me a couple basics, or sites I can start looking at (besides just websites that already use graphical layouts) on what I could do to make it that way myself. I don't want to "sub-contract" any of my webdesign out. It would just raise prices and if I can do it myself, I can keep my prices low. Not that I'm making anything with it yet, but it will come. I'm trying my best to learn as quickly as I can, and I think I'm doing well. This last try as design was basically just thrown together to see if I was heading in the right direction as far as designing, and it seems to be so. So it won't be too long before that site looks stunning and more "likeable" by the masses.

    I'm trying, and getting better . Gotta at least give me that, lol.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2005
    Posts
    327
    Hrmm. I'm not really sure. I'm an artist myself, so it just kinda comes natural to me - however, when I'm struggling for inspiration on a website, I look at other websites, magazines, books, that sorta thing. Stuff that contains printed content can be pretty good sources for inspiration on aesthetically pleasing design, when you are in a bind.

    Also, get a good digital camera - Architecture can be a great inspiration, and photography based designs can be very cool. For example, hit http://creativity.the-engine.org - my portfolio site. That building was a photograph of a skyscraper I found on the Stock Photo Exchange ( http://sxc.hu ) that I tweaked up a bit. Another example would be http://designs.the-engine.org - the home of my design business (the site isn't up yet, but the splash page shows the logo artwork).

    Don't rely completely on photographs for your designs, but they can be great resources. Also check out this place: http://www.alvit.de/web-dev/ - bookmarks for web devs. Great resources there.

    Hope that helps, good luck.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
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    im sorry i dont know why but blue does work for the internet unless you use wierd shades of it like msn does and ibm. but thats my 2cents

    as for your site the header is to hard to see make it a bit darker, or white or somthing also what you could do make shaddows using absolute positioned text or... you could put a diffrent div in the backround to get a different colour so text is easier to read and it also seperates the content from text

  7. #7
    Join Date
    May 2004
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    dobson ave.
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    Hi -
    What's good:
    You're not using a table-based layout, and the general
    organization of the page is fine. [Didn't check the code.]

    On the downside:
    --Very old-school, very plain.
    I think you need to do as suggested: view other sites, get
    excited, take notes on which techniques would like to try,
    then get busy playing around with them.

    --A bit confusing.
    Not sure why I'm here, what this site is for - please
    consider an identifying image and a clear explanation right
    off the bat. [Your header is pretty non-descriptive, as well.]
    The 'Kustom' also didn't seem professional to me in any way...

    You are obviously just starting out and developing your skills -
    it's a nice beginning, but needs a bit more 'inspiration' design-wise.

    Good luck,
    El

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    11
    Thanks for the input everyone. Like you said, I am pretty much just begining, but mostly trying to come into the latest in web dev. without going with like a flash site. Trying to just stick to HTML and CSS. So I'm still learning all the cool fun stuff that can be done now. This design was more experimental and as a teaching tool for myself. Now that I know that I can do some pretty funky stuff like this and doesn't require many lines of programming, I'll start working on making a more fun web site that is still somewhat professional. I'm not going to go with a 100% professional site. I'm human and like things to be fun just like everyone else. If people don't like the looks of my site, it's not going to kill me. I'm more after making an at least eye pleasing site (everyone's personal "flavor" in site opinions aside). But I'm moving in the right direction as far as designing is concerned. I've gotten away from tables, and everything validates. Just have to work on the "artsy" side of web dev. And graphic design as well... But it's coming.

    Thanks everyone

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
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    Washington, USA
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    The header image's cool, but it doesn't really "fit in" with the rest of the content. If your content had a different color scheme closer to silver etc it would probably "fit in" better.

  10. #10
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    i would prefer the header to connect with the contents div menu or whatever

  11. #11
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    Jun 2005
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    Thanks for all the suggestions. Now that I'm moved, I can get back to trying out a few things graphically, and new color schemes and all... I'm with you all and that the blue doesn't work well with it all. I'm going to go ahead and try a fixed width site and see if that works better, as it has been suggested. I've seen a couple sites using this method and I think I have a pretty good idea on how to make it work. As for layout, I'm think I'm going to be going with the same basic layout, I'm just going to add a couple of different graphics to it to seperate it all and make it look a little better.

    Thanks again,
    Jerred

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