I DID miss out documentation of stage 2 website re-design in the insanity of the Christmas period – however here I am armed with plenty to say about stage 3 of the site and why i’ve done this. Again.
I posted a while back with the first true incarnation of what I expected the site to look like once it had been finished, and, for the most part this concept was true to itself. In particular, the page template I had set aside for the “work” and “about” pages has not changed much since its conception. It’s manifested today much as it was when I was first designing it – with a contemporary layout and design scheme and a tried-and-tested style of navigation that should be familiar to everyone who uses it – navigation links and a header at the top, a wrapper allowing for changes in screen size and content scrolling down the center.
The splash, or homepage however I changed significantly soon after “finalising” the original concept. In trying to make the page super-responsive I experimented with re-positioning the elements and decided the page was much more uniform and intuitive if I put the links and logo at the top, in a uniform composition together. While it was still different to the rest of the site – which some critique I have received from peers indicates as being an issue due to inconsistency – it offered navigation in the same area of the viewport which users would find it elsewhere on the site, as well as unifying the complete set of links on the first page in a single location together. Furthermore, it leaves the rest of the viewport to be completely malleable – usable for other features or displays of featured content.
The second big change, and only other big change really was the rapid change of style across the pages. I went from a contemporary, colourful polka-dot with black accents for all the interactive elements, with transparency, to a completely dark style with a wooden background and use of drop shadows. However, evaluating both of these design choices, I decided to move on further still. The polka-dot theme did not wholly represent my style of design, being rather erratic, nor was it in tune with the rest of the design industry (which was something I wanted to try and incorporate in the personality of the site). The wood style was generally considered by others, and by myself, to look good as a whole, after some careful alterations to the use of opacity and shadow in some places that caused issues with visibility. However, it did not work well for a digital design portfolio I felt, and actually was more suited that of a traditional artist, craftsperson, or photographer. I settled for a warm-coloured flat design scheme comprised of off-white, off-black colours and an orange accent throughout which I felt seemed to work well and complimented my work much more effectively. I also added a slider to the front page which can be easily updated to feature different slides and featured work.
More pictures to follow.