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opinions needed on new website

Discussion in 'Website Design Critique:' started by BenJonesDesign, Aug 19, 2010.

  1. BenJonesDesign

    BenJonesDesign Active Member

    Hi everyone.

    Ok so I decided my online portfolio needed a good ol' revamp.

    My intentions with the design was to make it original and interactive. I wanted to re-create a mac screen and have similar usable features, used to display galleries etc. Despite knowing next to nothing about flash I have gone through many tutorials to get the site to where it is at the moment.

    Currently the main parts of the site are there including galleries, clock, animated icons, but i have still got to add those important preloader screens. Loading time isn't bad, initial load of the site is roughly 10-20 seconds, but may differ obviously.

    I would really appreciate it if everyone could give me their opinions on the site.
  2. Kevin

    Kevin Senior Member

    It doesn't look very nice. I'm okay with the idea, but this is just a poor recreation of OSX. Why don't you use actual elements of the UI rather than recreating them? Also, the icons you chose don't look nice and don't always make sense.

    Good try but this just doesn't cut it :confused:
  3. Levi

    Levi Moderator Staff Member

    Sorry but I'm the same, the work on the logo's is just dreadful, they remind me of primary school kids drawing in some cases. The laptop is just cut off on my screen and I'm pretty sure apple would have issues with you using their image anyways (against their t&C's of use iirc).

    On top of that there is one thing I can not let pass - you have not got any product designs on your site, they are packaging design at best, you did not design the bottle or a normal rectangle box as they're standardised products!
  4. matthewmoore3

    matthewmoore3 Junior Member

    ok, i dont want to pick a lame internet fight here, but go easy. i know this might be the place the big boys play or something, and people have to expect strong feedback, but saying something is dreadful and reminds you of primary school kids drawings isnt feedback, its just unpleasant. yes we are all hiding behind a veil here on such forums as these, im no exception, but try and remember you are speaking to an actual person. 2,282 posts doesnt give you a license to give completely unconstructive and unhelpful feedback.

    so anyway, i think your name is too hard to read at the bottom, but i guess you might have been thinking the name at the top is sort of the main logo too, but i think if you are going with that it either needs to be altered so your name is more readable, or you would have to remove the name aspect and just make some nice looking icons, at the moment its a bit lost between focus on each icon and actually being your name.

    for me i find the mac idea a bit too novelty, but then it may attract some people...i would say you dont really need to do something clever like that, pure simple design is often best which themes can be fed into.. this is a little like you have the theme and are reverse engineering the design into place. i would do it the otherway round, get a nice clear design and incorporate a theme into it. take something like this.. Kerry Nehil it is just clear and functional, its just strong communicative design, and the simple communcation is the main thing, if your site ends up looking a bit unclear because it is styled to look like a mac you have put style/theme before communication, with the function in place you can weave in some quirks like here... cozette lehman - writer, designer, idea maven or go for an all out theme.. Freelance Web Designer Dubai and User Interface Designer Dubai - 1ly Design

    for me i would just go plain straight forward html, strong design, good colors, simple, with a quirk here and there.. but the mac thing is a good idea so with that it is just a case a polishing it some more...
  5. Levi

    Levi Moderator Staff Member

    Um I wouldn't say I was being rude, I did say sorry in advance and the fact is that design is a harsh world, there's no point saying something is good when it isn't.

    And how is what I said unhelpful, if I think some of the logo's look like primary school drawings then sure as damn it a potential client will, they're usually a hell of a lot more critical in a highly competitive market such as design. Plus I never said the idea was bad, I was reviewing what was put on show and as such my opinion stands.

    edit: just for clarity - my reference to logo's is the bits at the bottom, not work in the portfolio
  6. matthewmoore3

    matthewmoore3 Junior Member

    ok cool, i really don't want to get at you. i agree with you in parts, and you were just giving an honest opinion and giving dislikes is useful feedback in many cases, and my post was probably too strong against your comments.

    just my feeling is yes its a harsh cut throat world out there but a design/art forum should be a place for some kind of helping each other to learn/progress so that in the real world we have a greater understanding, im sure we would agree on that. i felt your response was dismissive more than helpful (but sorry, im not the forum police, so i feel now its a bit stupid for me to be making this point) and that is ok, it could still be learned from in its own way and its the way things work.

    but if the the point of a response is to help, its possible such dismissive negative comments could have the opposite effect in the short term and crush confidence ect which is the opposite of help, and in this sense i think we really need to think if we are helping rather than wanting to write something down. (though yes it could be argued that getting knocked back can be helpful in some way)

    but its not up to me what can and cant be said, and i dont think what you said was really that terrible and also i apologize for bringing it up, deconstructing it and diverting the thread. sorry...
  7. BenJonesDesign

    BenJonesDesign Active Member

    thanks guys for the comments. To be honest I do expect some comments like Levi's, yes it can be harsh but I would rather that than somebody say it's great and not pick any holes. I am really only just finding my feet in the design world so I know I have to take every piece of criticism seriously otherwise i'll never learn and never progress.

    regarding the website i knew the part to criticize was the icons at the bottom. The idea with that is that each icon would represent the word which displays above it when the mouse hovers over it, which in terms are words I've tried to use to describe my attitude to graphic design. I have no experience in icon design but it's what I wanted and we all have to start it off somewhere (ok probably not the best place to start i know). I know I could have used standard icons but I wanted to create something more meaningful.

    Levi you are quite right in the product design part, I should label it packaging design, to be honest I wasn't sure what category the designs would come under as I'm quite the novice with that side of design as I'm much more on the branding and print design side of it., I shall change it in due course.

    Thank you Matthew for the comments, the links were very helpful and I may just use them as a bit of inspiration.
  8. Levi

    Levi Moderator Staff Member

    As you say you're not really a logo designer have you considered a more typographical approach to the design, ie using a nice font instead of images. A site doesn't need to be a load of pictures to make it look sleek and designer. Just look at microsofts approach with windows phone 7 (and their new live beta software) where it's all about text rather than using icons - personally I'd say thats more current than the approach taken by iphone/andoid.

    Another thing with those icons now you've explained them a bit more is I was expecting them to link to something and it sounds like they're not going to, I initially assumed it was just missing at this point on the design.
  9. BenJonesDesign

    BenJonesDesign Active Member

    I did think about linking them to something, but I couldn't think what, I wanted obvious links to the design work etc for easy access, but for the bottom icons I decided it would be best just to keep it quirky and for it to mean something.

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