After much trepidation and downright fear I’ve decided to write a blog in the vain hope it might drive more visitors to my site. By sharing some of my own experiences and trying to solve day to day problems that occur during my web design and development journeys, I might be able to help folk out and contribute back to the community in the process. You can subscribe if you like or click the orange RSS icon on the right next to ‘Brillo’s Pad’.
HTML 5 and Inspiration
While messing around in Photoshop one afternoon I decided it was time to completely overhaul my web site design from what was, essentially, a tired old beast, lurking in the shadows, into something a bit more edgy, possibly more refined? Consequently, I’ve adopted HTML 5 since I can never resist a new trick, and because plenty of modern browsers support it now, it seems silly not to (I still do XHTML if needs be).
The inspiration behind the re-design came after reading a Wikipedia entry on the Bahaus one evening and browsing various grid based layout techniques on the web, plus i’ve recently become interested in Gamification and feel this may have influenced the design somewhat; the biggest driver however is a classic book – Grid Systems in Graphic Design by Josef Müller-Brockman (a Swiss graphic designer), lent to me by an old friend, ‘Tink’. You should seriously check it out if you haven’t done so already. I’ve found it immensely useful on several occasions and it’s a must read if you’re dead serious about graphic design.
As a freelancer/contractor I’ve attempted to be a bit different (don’t we all) and think this new design is, relative to the old one (see pic). So, the website has reached a mini milestone since the original was uploaded back in 2006; I’ve tried to keep it relevant, engaging and possibly even informative.
As this is a portfolio website I have allowed the layout some freedom, I don’t have much content yet anyway, don’t get me wrong, I would never use this approach when designing and developing a clients’ website unless they wanted something a bit different, but until I’ve got more to categorise i’ll keep the design as it is.
I’m using WordPress to manage the site, simply because it’s a delight to use; I have the W3 Total Cache plug-in which minifies the CSS and HTML (I’m a big fan of optimisation – but not beyond the realms of un-readable code, especially during development) and all the images are compressed using PunyPNG because it doesn’t reduce the quality.
I’m keen to know what people think of the new web design, even if it’s a rather strong opinion, think its too ‘pop’, cluttered or Tetris-y? Any grammatical errors I should be aware of? lend some constructive criticism please!
Thanks go to Mark Donaldson for the inspiration behind the blog name – ‘Brillo’s Pad’ and my family for being so incredibly patient.