Archive for the ‘creative’ Tag

A man who letter spaces lower-case letters will steal your sheep?!

I had a random conversation with my wife last night concerning a few issues on the new business cards I had ordered for the company. I mentioned to her how an art director once lent me a book on typography that stated :

a man who letter spaces lower-case letters will steal your sheep

Needless to say that on those business cards I letter spaced the hell out of my lowercase words. I have always used this technique, and have always found it clean, modern, and easy to read.

She then proceeded to ask me

Is that something you want you company to be remembered for?

After much consideration I had arrived at my answer….Why the heck not?!

My conclusion was quite simple. Typography has always been around, and despite what most designers will think (I’ll probably get slammed for this..) I don’t think any person, or group of people, created it; nor had they set any type of standards for typography.

The way I see design is different than most. I wasn’t taught by some over-the-hill professor with a glass eye who created Helvetica and why they are a man among men. Some lady who creates greeting cards for Hallmark didn’t teach me the difference between serif and sans-serif fonts. No, I learned to design off gut instinct, despite how many “design rules” I break. The hell with rules. If good designers followed rules 24-7 then there would be no separation in style, each piece would replicate one another. After all when it comes to design, anything you can think of, has already been done…Right?!

To me, web design is all about conveying information to the users in the most direct, clean and usable manner. At the same time you must capture the feel of the company you are designing for, and its purpose. As long as you abide by those “rules” then your good to go!

Explore, Create, Inspire. Its fun to break rules. And sometimes the best designs are created by those who know nothing about design standards.. Who sets those anyways?! AIGA

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Return on Investment + Measurable Goals + Design = Headache

I haven’t been around much as of late. Not for lack of interest or commitment, but more so for lack of time and energy.

I have been carrying quite a design load around with me lately, in light of recent events this isn’t a bad thing. But, It feels really good when you are able to kick something out while being rushed that not only the client loves, but you are fond of as well. So you can imagine how hard it is to swallow concerning comments after satisfying not only the client but yourself. Especially when it comes from a colleague.
I fully understand why ROI is important not only from an analytic and client standpoint, but from a sales tool and case study point of view as well.

Basically, conversation have been going back and forth concerning our creative processes and over all design recently. It seems the concern is that designers worry more about colors, images, design flow, interface, and overall user experience thus, putting return on investment and measurable goals on the back burner.

This concerns me, as the absolute first question that I ask the client during our meeting is

what MEASURABLE GOAL do you want your website to accomplish?

from there I can start laying things out in my head, make changes to the scope where applicable, and overall start working out how to get a user from point a. (the homepage) to point b. (the web-owner’s measurable goal ie. checkout, donation form, event listing, etc.). It could be as simple as adding a prominent “donate now” button to the navi that will show up on every page, or as intricate as testing design flow on multiple users and what it is that they are looking for.

At this point i believe it is out of my hands and I have fully attacked ROI head on and made design related choices that will help benefit the clients roi, and help them reach their “measurable goals”. Is there something that I’m missing? There might just be.

I suppose that’s the question. What more can we do as interface architects to push the roi process post scope.