Put your thoughts on paper first:
This seems very obvious but I’ve found too often that designers jump straight into Photoshop before giving any thought to the problem they are trying to solve. Design is about solving problems and those problems can’t be resolved through gradients or shadows but through a good layout and a clear hierarchy. Think about the content, the layout and the functionality before starting to drop shadows.
When I’m asked to create a look and feel for a project, the first thing I do is come-up with a top level framework that solves all the design problems. The framework is the UI that surrounds the content and helps to perform actions and navigate through it. It includes the navigation and components like sidebars and bottom bars.
Choose your typography:
Exploring different typefaces and colors is part of the discovery phase of a project. I would not using more than two different typefaces in a website but it really depends on its nature I could use more or less. Overall choose a font that is easy to read for long amount of text and be more playful with titles and call to actions. I won’t be afraid of using big fonts and overall I be playful and consistent when using typography.
I challenge myself on every project. Innovation doesn’t always come as a requirement for the project so it’s up to us to come up with something interaction or design related. Examples of different challenges could include using a new grid system, creating a new component, or even minor challenges like avoiding blend modes or using a specific color.
Divide the layout:
Divide the layout:
Each section in my or your site needs to tell a story. It needs a reason and a final outcome for the user. The layout needs to help the content highlighting what are the most important pieces in that story. In reality there shouldn’t be too many call outs on a page so everything should drive to that final “What can I do here”.
Think about the most simple layout you can imagine for a simple purpose and start adding components that are necessary. At the end you’ll be surprise how hard is to keep it simple.
Treat every component as if it could be presented to a design contest:
I have to admit that this piece of advice is not mine. I heard it in the past and I was shocked by how clear and true this statement was. Each component needs to be designed as it could stand alone as the best component ever. Sometimes designers leave some parts of a site last on their to-do list and show little respect to them at the end.
At last but not least, there is so many things involved to create or design a website, like adding a grid, choosing colors or paying attention to details and etc…., but this is a few steps I take to make a perfect layout at least in my opinion.
Thank you for visiting and I hope you enjoyed your visit.