Website Reflection

I designed my website hoping to have design that was emotional and responsive to the design techniques and theories we read. I tried to put my viewers before myself. What I like isn't always what resonates with viewers, and sometimes accessibility has to be chosen over aesthetics. My original sketches were much busier than my final project. For starters, my home page was originally planned to have several small photos of myself and things about me, with little blurbs. As I learned about different techniques and style choices, however, I opted for one photo as the homepage background and simple navigation. By choosing to just have my name and the navigation bar on the homepage, it drew viewers' attention to what I wanted the focus to be on, and discarded any other distractions. Just about everything looks different from my original plans. As I talked to peers, explored other ideas, and learned techniques in Brackets, it became easier to get more creative and find a design that adhered to who I was as a designer. If given more time, I would probably add more device sizes too, in order to make sure my site was applicable on all devices, whether they be Google, Apple, or Android. I made designed my site to work on phones (both portrait and landscape), tablet (landscape), and computer screen, however it's always better to add more for the sake of viewership and navigation purposes. Nothing makes a viewer leave a website faster than difficulty reading, navigating or loading a page.

I really can't emphasize enough the progress I've made throughout this course, especially during the latter half of the semester. More than anything, I was scared to take risks or to switch things around without input from my professor or peers. I think the fear of messing up my code kept me from taking risk and really doing things on my own. After learning from my peers and going to coding sessions, however, I really got comfortable playing around with things. Height, size, margins, fonts, colors, etc. are so fun to play around with and see what works. A page can speak so much just by the design. I really was stuck on using color on my website, but as I learned more about design and saw more examples, I found myself leaning more towards themes that were primarily white space. I would probably add more the "About Me" and "Portfolio" pages if given more time and having more experience. I found it difficult to talk about myself professionally and showcase my projects, without having a clear career path or a lot of experience in certain fields. Also, I would probably find a better photo for the landscape portions of my website. Although I like the picture of the Seattle skyline, it does not necessarily represent me well as a designer. What should be emphasized in future classes is the importance of peer interaction and collaboration. It's easy to only think of your own preferences and style, and completely forget that designing a webpage is to showcase yourself, but it is also for your viewers. I think I gained most feedback and ideas by comparing and getting help from peers.