- The Game
- The Players
- Play Ball!
Chances are you know someone who makes brochures on the side (or even as their day job). But not all graphic designers can design for the web. When a client hands us a brochure and says, "make a web page that looks exactly like this," we can do it --- and we will, if we must. But the power of print design, where the page size, paper type, available fonts, and ink consistency are under the designer's control, can be lost on the web.
Web-savvy graphic designers know that people view pages on different sized windows, different sized screens, and different devices --- so they opt for liquid layouts (see below). They know that very few fonts are web-safe (see below), and that relying on text within images makes pages search-unfriendly and long-loading.
Web designers also know many ways to enrich a print design with colors, shapes and images without making it download-heavy, because they know the back-ends of websites that use these techniques. They know about streaming videos, animations, and interactive images that print designers would not think of. Finally, they know that web pages zoom by our eyes much faster than brochures do, so they design for understanding (see below) as well as impact.
If you have your own graphic designer, we'll theme a Drupal site based on their design. We appreciate getting to know new eyes and styles! But if your graphic designer is not web-savvy, ask them to make a starting design and then let us take over, with the following considerations:
- Liquid Layouts --- Size matters (at least when it comes to web design) Some people have big, beautiful wide screens and some have small ones. Web shoppers would rather see a lot of information on each screen than have to scroll down, down, down. For many examples of liquid layouts, visit Smashing Magazine.
- Design for Understanding --- There are hundreds of ways to visualize the same information. We have never stopped being amazed at the ideas presented on Visual Literacy's Periodic Table.
- Videos, Animations, and Interactive Images --- Your prospects are holding a mouse - give them something to do! If it doesn't move, it's dead - and interactive images make for stickier sites. Although this example is a challenge to parse, check out The Art of Complex Problem Solving.
- Web-Safe Fonts --- Web browser fonts, divided into serif, sans-serif, monospace, cursive, and fantasy families, are supported by most browsers on Macs, Windows and Unix/Linux machines.
What do you want to say --- and how many ways can you say it? Think of the possibilities --- and let us come up with a few. Let your pictures do the talking --- with a Game Face design consult!