Webpage Design

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Webpage Design


A well-designed page, whether in print or on the Web, is a thing of beauty. A skilled page designer can take widely differing elements like body-text, headings, images, links and whatever, and arrange them into a harmonious whole. Most viewers / readers know nothing about fonts, leading, justification or kerning, but can subconsciously sense when a page is well laid out, just as people can perceive the difference between a good and a bad photo or audio recording, without actually understanding the technical issues that make it good or bad. Good design is practical as well as aesthetic. Well-designed pages are easier to read, and lead your readers' eyes where you want them to be led. A good overall design has the following three traits:

  • It has unity and variety.
  • It supports, but does not overpower, the message.
  • It is appropriate to the particular message being conveyed.

A basic principle of classical aesthetics is that a good piece of art has a balance of unity and variety. That is, everything fits together into a recognizable whole, but at the same time there is enough variety to keep things interesting. The design of a site needs to be consistent from one page to the next. No matter where someone is on your site, they should know that they're on your site and nobody else's. The buzzword is "branding". One of the central elements of your brand is your logo.

Weird fonts, bizarre punctuation or too many colors can call attention to themselves, and distract the visitor from your message. An effective design simply presents your message in an attractive way. We keep the purpose of your web site firmly in mind at all times. 

What's good design for a corporate web site may be wrong for an entertainment site. The techniques we choose from will be determined by the kind of look and feel that's appropriate for your intended audience. It's a lot like choosing what kind of a suit to wear. If you're a politician, you wear a navy blue or grey suit, with a plain white shirt and a solid or striped tie. If you're an insurance salesman (for example), you might get away with something a little more flambouyant. If you're in the Web business, the sky's the limit - you can wear a tux jacket with Bermuda shorts and combat boots if you want. A similar concept applies to Web design.

Unity of design requires more than a logo in the corner. Colours, fonts, column layout and other design elements should be consistent throughout every section of your site. That's one reason stylesheets are so great. Not only do they allow you to change a particular element throughout a whole site by simply changing the style sheet, but they also protect you against accidental lapses, like a single paragraph somewhere appearing in the wrong font.

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