Web designing has all but reached a new level in the recent past. Designers are striving hard to construct user-friendly interfaces in order to satisfy the requirements of the customers, owners, and designers alike.
Crafty as it is, it is quite the unique blend of site structure, colors, imagery, information architecture, fonts, layout, navigation, and user interface, all adhering to the basic principles of design like rhythm, unity, balance, emphasis, and contrast.
Are You A Web Designer Or An Artist?
It has been believed for a very long time that designers are not artists. Conceptualising was deemed separate from application and as such these two fields were never considered equal under the same bracket. It is accepted that artists and designers both develop visual compositions, but they do so for different set of reasons.
It has been believed that:
- Art is inspiring but design motivating.
- Artists invent, designers just communicate.
- Art needs to be interpreted whereas design needs to be understood.
- Art is tasteful, design is opinionated.
- Art is about talent, design is about skill.
- Art is ingrained, design is taught and learnt.
- Art dispenses different meanings, design imparts one meaning.
- Art is for self-expression, design is for selling.
Contrary to popular belief, artistic creativity actually does affect the outcome of a particular web design. In short, a web designer, in essence, needs to be a good artist. The logistics stemming from an efficient web design may not be conceived without the creative insights of an actual artist. Individuals who can effectively assimilate the principles of technology and art to construct a vibrant façade of colours, numbers, images, and text can be affectionately termed as “web artists”.
Such individuals have made quite a mark in the world of digital print through their innovative and ingenious designs. While moving in tandem with technology, they have successfully reached a point of no return with their enhanced creativity and unique designs.
Artists are not designers, but designers could be artists because:
- Just like a good piece of art stems from a particular point of view, web designing too begins with an ideology or an opinion.
- Art and design both exist to bond with the general public.
- Art and design connect with people in different ways, yet are construed to imply the same message.
- They both cater to the sensibilities of the audience.
- They both have elements of taste.
- Artists and designers are born to express their creative temperament.
- They both concoct visually stimulating imagery to engage and entice the thought process of interested individuals.
- Art is personal, yes; design too can be made your own.
Keeping the specificities of designing an attractive web page in mind, several different trends have been making waves in the digital market. Trending the contemporary way, these designers have stolen the show with some exceptional styles hitting the floor this season. There are several websites which have exceptional artistic design. Let’s take a look at the 10 latest trends which merge designing with artistry:
1. Tryst with Typography
In the year 2014, several designers were seen experimenting with different styles of “type”. Keeping the general “Helvetica” and “serif” aside, new fonts were discovered which had the ability to put life in an online page. What they possessed was an ability to stand on their own. The main aim behind this innovation was to see fonts with a character. For example, “world baking day” website employs the use of bold text with vibrant colors. Their navigation menu is quite unique and compact.
2. Freakishly Flat
The two words that have completely taken over technology today are “compact” and “flat”. Brought on by Apple with their iOS7, the trend to keep everything “flat” has become a big rage with many new online websites opting for this attractive design. The customers have given quite the positive response to this new style and it looks as if the “flat” design is here to stay.
3. “Hero” Hangover
It is now time to say goodbye to sliders and reign in the era of large hero areas. This is currently the topmost trend in the digital market. A hero area is a large intro area, which is mostly accompanied with an image and little amounts of text at the beginning of the page. A number of real estate websites like 99acres.com are also vying to remove the sliders in order to adopt this trend. Another website “logicart” has also employed this technique to keep its design interface more engaging and elaborate.
4. Cellphone Compatibility
Since the response to creative web design has been quite positive, many designers are now trying to market their products through cellular technology. The aim is to design their online pages in a manner which keeps the website fully functional on a cellphone. In short, the mobile web has become quite popular as an increasing number of individuals are accessing their favourite websites on mobiles, iPads, and tablets. Email subscriptions, fast loading websites, scrolling websites, and integrating data with social media are some of the techniques employed by web designers to attract clientele.
5. Video Vision
As the name suggests, textual matter is being replaced with visuals and videos. They make a website more appealing, attractive, engaging, and user-friendly. Why try to read something when you can simple watch a practical demonstration? Videos are being used in the hero area of many websites. Even though this practise is contradicted by some due to slow downloads and prolonged buffering of videos, this trend is quite catchy and helpful when it comes to explaining technical concepts of building and designing.
6. Color Clarity
According to the latest trends, color schemes in the year 2014 were mostly simple and straightforward. Only a handful of colors were employed to create magic on screen. For example, the website “UIKit” has only one main color, blue. This trend goes hand in hand with the latest “flat” design mania. Most websites today use only one or two colors or no color at all but for black and white.
7. Clear & Simple Content
The year 2014 saw simple and straightforward textual elements as opposed to the year 2013 with its flamboyant content. Simplified content here means short bursts of text, not exceeding 2 – 3 sentences in one paragraph. The attention span of individuals when browsing through textual material online is very short. Keeping this in mind, the size and extent of paragraphs has reduced, and visuals in the form of colors, videos, and imagery have increased. Except blogs, most of the content on different web pages is not more than 250 characters. This makes it faster and easier for people to just scan through the data.
8. Lengthy Listicles
The trend of writing “listicles” has taken the virtual world by storm. Several new startups and enterprises including young entrepreneurs are entering the field by providing content in the form of a list. BuzzFeed.com, Storypick.com, etc. are some of the websites which have become quite popular due to their contemporary and racy take on content perception and delivery. The content is normally supplemented with images or videos and is brief, to the point.
9. Slide the Sidebar
Several web designers have given up on the sidebar altogether. Normally used to display advertisements and classifieds, their presence was quite jarring to the naked eye when surfing through the net. The sidebar-less design is quite appealing and endearing to the public when it comes to visual appeal. Imagine going through a website without advertisements popping or jumping out at you at regular intervals in order to grab your attention. Designers are well aware of this issue and are striving hard to make your reading and surfing experience more enjoyable by removing these obstacles and expanding the data to take over the entire extent of the page.
10. Innovative Imagery
Imagery has taken on a new meaning this year. Manipulating old pictures is an art. Several web designers have effectively deployed pages which have blurred pictures, color overlays, cut-outs, or even images which are very “Instagram” style replete with the use of borders and filters. The images can be specially crafted to give a rustic and antique feel to the entire website.
The Secret Behind A “Web Artist”
As we can see, a lot goes behind designing the basic layout of a web page. Creativity is in its element, and hence works in tandem with technology to create alluring pieces of virtual art. The basic requirement for becoming a web designer is a bachelor degree in web design. It provides basic education about concepts like digital arts and design, visual communication, web application programming, multimedia production, and usability and interactivity testing.
To become a successful web designer, you need to be equipped with the required skill set and have relevant knowledge to avoid common mistakes. Such as:
Skills and core competencies:
- Strong graphic design and interface design skills.
- Proficiency in using Adobe Photoshop or Dreamweaver.
- Knowing and understanding HTML.
- Employing the use of CSS to design exceptional websites.
- A strong knowledge of the principles and concepts of design.
- Programming languages like PHP, ASP, Java, Perl, and C++.
- Building and maintaining a database like MySQL, Access, or SQL.
- Bringing vector graphics and animation to webpages through Flash.
- SEO, or search engine optimisation is very important for creating attractive websites.
- Having knowledge about the server on which your website is running.
- Managing the website like a project.
- Create websites in a range of formats.
Mistakes to avoid:
- The content layout must not be unorganised.
- Navigation should be smooth and clear.
- Readability and legibility should not be poor.
- Color and contrast should not be jarring to the senses.
- Do not use heavy animations and images.
- Keep the webpage clutter-free.
- The content should not be outdated or irrelevant.
- Pop-up windows should be avoided.
- Do not go live without testing.
- Giving broken links which do not lead anywhere.
- Agreeing to timelines which cannot be met.
- Not updating your personal website.
- Not corresponding with developers.
Due to the rampant growth in industrialisation and commercialisation, several enterprises are advertising their products and policies online. Due to this, web designing has reached new levels of becoming a “necessary mandate”. Employment opportunities in this field are numerous, with many “techies” opting for web designing as a lucrative career option. With the increasing need of websites for different companies and organisations, the hunt for efficient web designers is on, who can create professional and appealing webpages.
In order to become a prosperous web designer, you can work as a trainee for about six months in an IT company and then move up the ladder. Several certification courses are also available to master the programming languages. However, all of this is easier said than done.
All the skills and required set of core competencies can be attained during college or through personal experiences, but to effectively mention them in your resume before applying for a job is another story altogether. It is very important here to craft an appealing professional document that lists your skill set in a way that it shines. In case of doubt, professional resume writing services can be employed to help in formatting your CV or resume when applying for the post of a web designer for the very first time.
Web designers can and have etched out an attractive roadmap towards the future. They need to continue endeavouring in order to emerge as architects and connoisseurs of contemporary change.
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