So we started the class with the idea of web design being based around a lot of "crap." Now before you think I'm downing the class, "crap" in the graphic design sense is a loosely used acronym for contrast, repetition, alignment and proximity, aka "crap." This is a very true statement; without all the proper "crap" there would just be a mess of designs all over the web and in print. When using contrast throughout a web design one must ensure at least two of the elements are really different and should remember to not be "wimpy" on how the differences are displayed. Repetition is important when a web site has multiple pages to keep the person viewing the site aware that all the pages are connected. Color, fonts and images are great examples of methods that show repetition throughout a site. Alignment is also important so that a viewer doesn't have to jump all over the page to read or view what the site has to offer. The main rule for Alignment is to find what you're comfortable with and stick to it. Proximity is what ties all the elements of "crap" together. The site should be grouped together according to importance and keep texts describing images close to the actual image giving viewers a visual clue of how you want the site to be perceived. If all of these principles are taken into consideration when designing a web page or print ad they will prove to have better results, even if the site is just for entertainment.
Part of week 1 homework was to read from the book "The Non-Designer"s Web Book." The book is basically set up like one of those "for dummies" books and is amazingly helpful. I am far from a computer person, not that I don't enjoy what one has to offer, just never had a big need to use a computer prior to me going to college. That being said, this book is shedding a lot of light on the basic things that I thought I already knew and understood. So far with the book we covered things like what the web is, how to navigate around the web, browser use and differences and how to search through the Internet (this was good for me because I get easily frustrated with "searching"). From there we read some sites and a chapter about print vs. web. This was quite interesting how different the two are and yet they can really work hand in hand if used properly.
Overall with week 1, I have learned that graphic design plays a big role in my daily life. One of our other assignments was to cut out two "good" ads and two "bad" ads using our newly learned knowledge of how something should look. Through this process I found that if ads are not set up properly you tend to just cruise right past them missing the whole point of whats being advertised! I noticed that even billboards have to follow these correct principles or they won't get the point of what they are trying to sell or market because of the short amount of time you get to read them. Same thing goes for web pages, if you click to a site that just looks like a mess or doesn't load fast enough, chances are you'll just skip it and move on.
In just one week my understanding of design for the web vs. print has improved dramatically. When you design something for print like an ad, you're designing something that can be held and you can take the time to read and look at. Ads are normally just a portion of a page mixed in with other ads and a lot of time you don't concern yourself with the overall layout; you read what you need to know and move on. With web design it has to be user friendly, has to be attractive in a sense or a person will just skip to the next available site on the topic. The way to achieve proper attention is with a well laid out page and if it is going to have multiple pages, make sure they all appear as one flowing site that is legible and full of "crap."