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JBD
08-05-2007, 12:30 AM
I am working on a design for my new website (a kind of online portfolio) and I just thought I would show my progress so far. This link just shows a photoshop design before I take it into DW.

http://jonballdesign.co.uk/newhomepageidea.html

Does anyone know how I would make the lists of text overlap the shadows of the 3 boxes?

I originally intended to not have any text on show at first as I wanted to keep the design minimal. Am I right in thinking that by having these 'keywords' on my home page will help with SEO?

Any comments on the design and suggestions on creating this in DW would be greatly appreciated.

JBD

d a v e
08-05-2007, 06:48 AM
no image there!

maybe you need to specifiy the file extension ;)
<img src="new homepage idea" width="800" height="800" />

JBD
08-05-2007, 11:17 AM
hmm worked in Safari for me. Anyway have done what you said - hope it works :)

domedia
08-05-2007, 12:40 PM
Shows a white blank page for me.
This is not a valid source for an image:
<img src="new homepage idea" alt="" name="design" width="800" height="800" id="design" />

It has to be a filename, like background.jpg. Just because you mac is forgiving and displays an image, does not mean that it will work.

JBD
08-05-2007, 12:58 PM
Not sure what was going on there, it seems like it didn't like the jpeg I was using. Fingers crossed this time...

http://jonballdesign.co.uk/newhomepageidea.html

Karkar
08-06-2007, 03:04 AM
Just because you mac is forgiving and displays an image, does not mean that it will work.

hehe el oh el

Jittor
08-06-2007, 05:32 PM
JBD,

That looks pretty cool! I like it. The only thing that gets lost for me is the footer because it looks so similar to the text in lists. Also, your gradient in your "jonballdesign" looks good but is different in "jon" than in the rest, there is a tiny bit of the gradient coming down as to say it is supposed to be like the rest of the logo, but it's not. It's design so it is your choice, but from a professional POV I noticed it and would expect it to carry over to the "jon" or the "jon" be completely different to show it was supposed to be that way. As far at the font over the image, I can't help but to think of using Flash, but someone might know of something else.

marcia
08-06-2007, 07:19 PM
JBD,

Intuitive reply - how about making your photoshop page your DW background, and just use layers for the lists?

Probably not elegant, but could work...

JBD
08-06-2007, 07:20 PM
Hi Jittor thanks for your comments. I see what you mean by the gradient and I think I will need to rework this. This link shows my old logo which as you can see has various shades of blue to differentiate the words.

http://jonballdesign.co.uk/index.html

I've tried to make the logo a little more visually appealing and tie in with the shaded boxes but like you've pointed out, the shades of blue need to be more defined.

I also agree that the links at the bottom don't look right (bit of an after thought) - I may create some subtle buttons to use as links to these areas of my website.

I know Flash would be the best way to make this site look nice but at the mo I'm not that confident with Flash. I'll hopefully have a Flash version in the future - for now I think I'll have these lists as images not only because it will be easier but a friend said as SEO keywords they wouldn't benefit my site much anyway.

Thanks again for the constructive criticism - anyone else?

JBD

Jittor
08-06-2007, 09:05 PM
I still like your new logo much better than the old, and I like the gradient as well, I was just saying that you should either carry it over into the "jon" or make the jon totally unique. For example have the same gradient on the bottom or "jon" instead of at the top.

As far as the footer it just needs something to stand out as a footer. Maybe a bar behind the whole thing or some squares in front of the words. See attached, a little can go a long way.

JBD
08-06-2007, 11:12 PM
Ok, here is a link to my hopefully improved design:

http://jonballdesign.co.uk/newwebsiteidea.html

I have also added the three category pages which, although are not complete, give an idea of layout and navigation via the top 3 boxes.

Please let me know what you think...

Thanks!

davidj
08-06-2007, 11:15 PM
the image does not appear

also try adding underscores to the image naming convention rather than using spaces

JBD
08-06-2007, 11:24 PM
strange when I save them as normal jpegs in PS they don't show up - only when I save them via 'save for web' do they work. Anyway, should work now :)

davidj
08-06-2007, 11:27 PM
i like it

is it going to have that scrolling feature? (length)

JBD
08-06-2007, 11:35 PM
no no that is simply to show the layouts - the idea is you 1st click on one of the big coloured boxes which will take you to the chosen category (the 3 pages shown). You could then use the top three boxes to navigate to each category or off course click on one of the ten image boxes in the middle to either view a sample of work or go to a sub category page.

I want to try and avoid scrolling - obviously for smaller screens this can be tricky but I'm planning on keeping each page within an 800x800 window.

davidj
08-06-2007, 11:48 PM
you can develop a fluid style where the site expands to fill the browser but i think your style does require a more rigid design

JBD
08-06-2007, 11:57 PM
yeah I have noticed this style of site you mention though for this design layout I'm not too sure how well it could be implemented. I'll just have to assume the majority of visitors can view an 800x800 window on their screen - if not then there shouldn't be to much required scrolling to put people off.

Another question: is it that hard to create a login where clients can view work in progress?

davidj
08-07-2007, 12:10 AM
you need scripting language support like PHP. This is an additional feature your host would provide at a small cost.

you could look at your task like this....

your login system is compared to say driving 10 meters down the road but you still have to learn all the complexities of driving before you can turn the key.

what i am trying to say is you need to understand how to program in PHP before tackling a small project

JBD
08-07-2007, 12:24 AM
I see what you mean - I believe my hosting package supports PHP... Now I just need to learn PHP. Think I'll get the rest of the site online first and come back to that. Cheers!

If anyone else wants to comment on my design here is the link again :)

http://jonballdesign.co.uk/newwebsiteidea.html

domedia
08-07-2007, 01:48 PM
Looks great. I like the whole 3 square color design thing you got going.

Jittor
08-07-2007, 03:13 PM
Looking good. Nice changes

JBD
08-07-2007, 10:08 PM
Thanks Jittor I think your advice has definitely enabled me to see the week points and make positive improvements. Much appreciated!

JBD
08-07-2007, 11:29 PM
(I also saw the 'weak' points) :)

Brenda226
08-08-2007, 02:36 AM
Love the design...especially your choices of colors...very nice... have you thought of linking the categories? Or perhaps, making the categories appear on mouse over...

JBD
08-08-2007, 02:26 PM
Thanks Brenda226 - yeah I was considering having the category headers and lists appear on mouse over as I quite like the simplicity of just having the 3 boxes as an initial 'welcome' to my website. Sorry for sounding stupid but what do you mean by "linking the categories"?

Brenda226
08-08-2007, 06:55 PM
JBD, you’re not stupid at all…what I meant by making the categories linkable…so your users can click on the specific category and go straight to the page … that’s if you decide to keep the categories on your home page…

My opinion (not that you asked for it) I love your design…very clean and professional… having the categories on your home page takes away from the design of the boxes…you should try to go with your idea of a mouse over…

In any case your design is great…:-D

JBD
08-08-2007, 07:48 PM
I'm pretty sure I will loose the lists of categories and have them as mouse overs - your opinion is much appreciate. I did after all show my design with the intention of seeking some feedback. So this is how it will probably look:

http://jonballdesign.co.uk/Homepage/designwithouttext.html

I also have plans for the top 3 boxes which will hopefully be revealed soon. So yeah, anyway... thanks again for your positive comments, I just hope my DW skills are up to scratch, to do the design justice. :)

Brenda226
08-08-2007, 10:54 PM
You'll do great...please keep me posted as I would love to see your finished design... best wishes!

JBD
08-08-2007, 11:10 PM
Cheers! Will do

p.s. perhaps you'd like to share with us some of the work you've done?

Brenda226
08-09-2007, 01:26 AM
I'd love to...I love to design... I currently run two businesses...one is my web/graphic design...the other is a bakery... I know... they are two extremes...but it's the design of it all that I LOVE! I'm currently in the process of opening my own bakery (baking from home has become a hassles)...I'm hoping to be open by September 1st... I'm currently working on my website...it'll be www.customcakesbybrenda.com (http://www.customcakesbybrenda.com/)...

as for web/graphic business I do from home...Although I love it so much...I run into a lot of people with no artistic vision... remember...I'm from Delaware and people here like conservative and plain... some of my web work includes... www.tlclaw.net (http://www.tlclaw.net/) ... www.pdhministries.com (http://www.pdhministries.com/) ... go to their store and I have designed all of their CDs... also .. www.gapproved.com (http://www.gapproved.com/) ... I've designed all of their Tshirt designs... www.hisandherscleaningservices.com (http://www.hisandherscleaningservices.com/) ... she wanted purple and beige...I tried to get her to add some accents...but she preferred the two colors... I'm currently designing a website for a guy and he did not want anything flashy...he wanted something plain...and when I say plain I mean PLAIN... he wants me to do a floral background with the text on top... What? no background coloring? UGH... I'll let you know when I launch it... some of my graphic design work was for a guy in Florida...he does salsa instructional classes... I did the first two (salsafix beginners step by step and advanced turn patterns) http://www.salsafix.net/SalsaEssentials.html (http://www.salsafix.net/SalsaEssentials.html)

Here is just some of my work...I can send you more...

JBD
08-09-2007, 02:11 PM
"OMG i just found my ideal woman!" - If davidj reads your last post and sees you run a bakery business as well I think there could be a marriage proposal... haha!

So yeah anyway, wow you're a busy lady - Nice looking sites but like you say it's hard to really create something that suits your own artistic flair when the client gets scared of something they can't understand. You can always try talking them into thinking beyond the box but at the end of the day, you have to make them happy... Wouldn't it be nice to pick and choose clients who were open minded.

So did you study to become a designer or is it more of a self taught/natural talent kinda thing?

davidj
08-09-2007, 03:38 PM
So did you study to become a designer or is it more of a self taught/natural talent kinda thing?


smoothy!!!

Brenda226
08-12-2007, 02:04 AM
I have always been this way... as I child... instead of playing with Barbie’s and dolls (though I did from time to time)... my passion were playing with calculators, typewriters...well...just that...electronics! At a really young age I helped my mother in the kitchen until I kicked her out... tee hee hee... I would make breakfast from my brother and sister... I was ALWAYS creating something... whether I was in the kitchen baking a cheesecake or apple pies...or in my bedroom playing corporate office (LOL) I was always busy...I've always loved to be challenged... You should have seen my school projects...instead of receiving a 100 I would receive 120... yes...I was an overachiever... LOL....davidj is so funny...he's the first person I wrote to here...

Ok... so I ramble on top of it all... although I was born with the passion...I did attend the Art Institute of Philadelphia where I obtained my Degree (with honors) in MultiMedia and Web Design.

As for the clients...yes...I wish they would open up to what's in...as apposed to "conservative" ... nothing wrong with that...but let's slash some colors around... But if I want to get paid and them off my to do list... I must agree to disagree and give them what they want...

BTW, how are you coming along with your design?

wasovs4
08-12-2007, 01:45 PM
Nice Design But Will Look Better If You Chage The Colours Were It Says Jon Ball Design

JBD
08-12-2007, 02:24 PM
wasovs4: I did change the colour from the original design shown in this thread perhaps you didn't see the modified version:

http://jonballdesign.co.uk/Homepage/designwithouttext.html

If so then how would you recommend changing the colours? If you don't mind me asking...

Brenda226: Not much progress on my website as along with my day job and clients taking up evenings and weekends I have little time for my own projects. I do hope to go full time freelance within the next 6-12 months but it's a big step giving up a stable salary. Having graduated 3 yrs ago I am getting a little frustrated - can't wait to be my own boss!

How about you, do you like running two separate businesses or do you aim to focus on one of them in the future?

Brenda226
08-12-2007, 11:19 PM
JBD: How about you do you like running two separate businesses or do you aim to focus on one of them in the future?

Hey JBD...I'm easily bored...I do love running both businesses...it keeps me busy and different... However, for the next few months I'm going to give 80% to the bakery and 20% to the web/graphics... I want to be able to get the bakery up and running...then I will open up the web/graphics office...

As for your steady salary...here is my advise... I too went through the dilemma...In the next few months put away enough money to pay your rent/mortgage and bills for two months...after that... go part time therefore you would at least get half the income... then on your time off...work your butt off and market yourself... you should look through the phonebook to see what businesses do not have a website in place...call them and tell them a little about yourself and then tell them that you noticed that they do not have a website in place...give them the wonderful advantages on having one...then tell them about your web/graphics packages... economy... 5 page HTML site with url and hosting included for $450 ... make sure to purchase the url and hosting through go daddy as they have VERY LOW rates and you would still make a profit... so for the mentioned package you would make $390 profit... see? aim to sale two websites a week to start with and then grow from there...BUT...be sure not to bite more then you can chew...

It's wonderful to be your own boss as it liberates you from the headache of having to answer to someone... even worse... being the one making someone else RICH!

Don't let to much time go by as you will always find another excuse to wait another 6-12 months...trust me ... I speak from experience... you just have to do like NIKE and "Just Do It"!

Let me know when you're ready as I can share with you my marketing tactics and what helped me bring in the money...

Good luck...

wasovs4
08-26-2007, 08:19 AM
Like The Design I Think It may Be An Idea For My New Project