Monday, July 25, 2011

Week 2 Reading

I think that this week's reading had a lot of really good information. I thought that the information about "nesting" in sites and reducing the amount of words used on a site are very simple ways to improve a website by 100 percent. I think that a lot of times, as designers, we get caught up in an idea that we have to make every single project we work on an innovative, ground breaking new design, but in reality, that is just not the case. I really liked the point that the author made about using design elements that work, and have stood the test of time, rather than making every project you make look like a circus. I like simplicity and I think that is what consumers and clients like as well. If something is too confusing, or takes too much thinking to find what they are looking for, no one is going to spend very much time on a website. Another point that the author made that I really thought was great was the example with the Verizon survey and reducing words. At the beginning of the chapter, the quote about cutting in half the amount of words you're using, then cut them in half again, I thought that was impossible. How would anyone get the proper information? But I really saw how the same exact point got across with way less words. It's all about organization, and where information should go so that people can find it if they need it, but every single piece of information is not sitting there on the homepage for them to sort through.
Still really enjoying this book, I think that I have learned more from this book than any other assigned reading that I have had so far!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Concept Statement

(I wasn't sure if this is the one you wanted posted, or the last one I posted, so I'm posting both!)  

   Create a list of all users that may visit your site (not from the WWW but those you’d invite).
I want my site to be visited by potential employers, potential clients for freelance work, and anyone interested in design
.    What will each of those users want to see in order to enjoy their visit to your site?
The users will want to see my work and my personality through my work. They will want to see that I am professional and do good quality work. 
.    Name your intended audience (the person(s) you need to persuade.)
My intended audience is potential employers and clients
.    Describe what you need to inform and persuade them of:
                        Promote my: Graphic Design work
                        Goals of the site are: To show my skills and abilities as a designer and my showcase my resume and accomplishments and experience
                        My ultimate message/philosophy (about who you are): My ultimate message is that I am a person with skill and creativity who would be an ideal fit for any job or project
                        What is the story you are telling? I am telling my story of my style and level of craftsmanship in my work. 
.    Write a 200 word concept statement based on the user, your persuasion, navigation and the assets.
.    List the assets you need to persuade the user: Which 7 (minimum) projects? scans of what?, photos of what objects? images from what computer graphics program? what descriptive text? list them.
.    For the purpose of structuring your website portfolio pages, list the categories of work you will show. (for a Photographer, for example, it may be portrait, product, sports photography categories).

Concept Statement:
My website will be easy to use, simple to navigate and will first and foremost, show my work. I do not want my site to be overdesigned, or full of stuff, I simply want it to show my work and my resume. I do not think that a portfolio website should have to be crazy and over the top creative, sometimes simpler is better, and I do not want my work to be overshadowed by a website full of bells and whistles. Navigation will be simple, with only a few buttons and will be very organized. My users will respond well to this layout because many people have to look at tons of designer portfolios everyday, and the easier mine is to use, the more likely that a potential employer or client will be able to quickly look through all of my work. This will help achieve my overall goal of being hired to do design work because more of my work will be seen by potential employers. My work will be displayed through the use of photos and descriptions of the project requirements or background. I will also have several views of the same project listed in thumbnail form underneath the main photo so that users can see the project at all angles. I am not sure which projects I am going to feature yet, but all of them will fit into one of three categories: Print, Identity and Web. 

Sketches for my Personal Site

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Project Statement

Project Statement for my Portfolio Website

I want to show the viewers of my website the style and quality of work that I do, and my abilities and skills as a graphic designer. I want my portfolio website to display not only my work, but my personality and professionalism as well.
Target Audience:
Potential employers, fellow designers, and those interested in design
After viewing my site, I would like potential employers to want to hire for work, and for fellow designers to offer advice and guidance.
I do not yet have very much work that is ready to be displayed
Key Benefit:
Potential employers and fellow designers will have the opportunity to see my work and what I am capable of.
Support Statement:
If my site design is successful, I will have opportunities to gain work experience and exposure
Clean, simple, and profession, with interesting work displayed

Mood Board for My Personal Website

Week 1 Reading

I found the reading from this week to be very interesting because it addressed something that seems so obvious about design, yet was something that I had never really thought about: Being simply obvious. I think that a lot of design that we have seen and that is shown to us as students as being exceptionally conceptual design was all very un-simple. The chapters that were assigned this week really helped me with my first project for this class, designing my personal website. After reading, I don't feel as bad or lame for wanting a really simple website with no bells or whistles, just my work.
I think that the most important thing I learned in this week's reading is that people are not going to take the time to read through an entire website, even if it is well written and good information. The truth is, people don't want to take the time to read through tons of text, they just want to get where they want to go and read the part they want to read. Because of this, I found how important it is to have a site with minimal text and clear, easy to find buttons and links. I learned that the more simple, easy to use, and organized a page is, people will get the information they need easier and quicker, and it makes the entire site seem better as a whole.
So far, I find this textbook to be really interesting and enjoyable (which is strange in itself; liking a textbook) and will provide me with really good information that I can use in class in my assignments, and also outside of class in my other classes as well.

I also found some really inspiring portfolio websites this week, and all of them have that simple, clean, and organized look that I am going for in my own portfolio site.

 Taddeo Zacchini
Garren Lamson

& my all-time favorite graphic designer with my favorite site EVER
Jessica Hische