Critique on my Portfolio Site


dkotter

macrumors member
Jul 30, 2009
57
0
It's not a bad design but there are things I would personally change. There is a lot of text there and what you'll find is people tend not to read paragraph after paragraph of text, so you might want to cut it down to the most important points. I would also make links out of items you mention that are pages on your site, such as when you say go to the services section, you can make that a link to that section. There are also some typos and grammatical errors you'll want to fix if you're looking for a professional feel.

I also don't know why you have so many style sheets. It seems to me like you could combine most of them into one, thus possibly speeding up page rendering.

But all in all I like the simplicity and ease of use of the site.
 

splitpea

macrumors 6502a
Oct 21, 2009
984
225
Among the starlings
The bold colors work nicely, and the design isn't overdone, but I agree that there's a lot of text. If you're emphasizing your design skills, you might want to make it more visual.

Then I'd cut down the text to a focused mission statement of sorts (2-3 sentences saying what you do and how you do it differently or better than anyone else), and leave the bio for the about page and the rambling for the blog.

Also, more leading (larger line-height in CSS) would make the text feel a little less cramped and more legible. The body font size is very large, which is great for those of us with iffy vision, but does feel a little awkward.
 

Renese-Williams

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 17, 2010
67
0
It's not a bad design but there are things I would personally change. There is a lot of text there and what you'll find is people tend not to read paragraph after paragraph of text, so you might want to cut it down to the most important points. I would also make links out of items you mention that are pages on your site, such as when you say go to the services section, you can make that a link to that section. There are also some typos and grammatical errors you'll want to fix if you're looking for a professional feel.

I also don't know why you have so many style sheets. It seems to me like you could combine most of them into one, thus possibly speeding up page rendering.

But all in all I like the simplicity and ease of use of the site.
Yeah, I don't like that much text either; however, if I left it blank there would be too much blank space because of the height of the sidebar. I was planning on doing the links as well... As soon as I got everything else up. I had lots of style sheets because this one had a lot of css lines. I wanted to separate them by what section they were for. It seems like that wasn't a good move? Anyway, thanks for your feedback.

The bold colors work nicely, and the design isn't overdone, but I agree that there's a lot of text. If you're emphasizing your design skills, you might want to make it more visual.

Then I'd cut down the text to a focused mission statement of sorts (2-3 sentences saying what you do and how you do it differently or better than anyone else), and leave the bio for the about page and the rambling for the blog.

Also, more leading (larger line-height in CSS) would make the text feel a little less cramped and more legible. The body font size is very large, which is great for those of us with iffy vision, but does feel a little awkward.
~ See reason for lots of text above ~

The line-height I've actually already set. Any bigger an it just looks completely awkward. I leave the body font to the size the user browser has it. That way they can have the font the size they need.

~~~~~

Wow, this spring break has been crazy. I've created three different designs for my portfolio site, and now I'm wondering what I'm going to do with the two I don't choose. Maybe convert to a template and sell them?

My first design is at:
http://www.acdesigns.cz.cc/v1/
My second design (the one you guys saw) is at:
http://www.acdesigns.cz.cc/v2/
My third design, which I'm absolutely proud of and what you guys' opinions on this one, is at:
http://www.acdesigns.cz.cc


~~~

Thanks guys!
 

designgeek

macrumors 65816
Jan 30, 2009
1,061
0
"Town"
Stylistically it seems to be split three ways. I'd stick with only one of these:

I like this modern style, possibly a change of typeface would be good.


This one is good too, I really like the use of black, white, and one other color.


This one is pretty elegant but not very simple, it certainly works and there is nothing wrong with it but it doesn't seem to fit with your motto of simply elegant. Also, for simplicity's sake, I'd ditch the background graphic.

It is good that you show diverse design skills, a lot of people out there can only do one. :)
 

johnspells

macrumors newbie
Apr 5, 2010
4
0
You had nicely did it, I often use to oppose the black or dark background but It is really looking very nice. The combination of colors is good, Font size and font style are perfect.You had given a different look to it. Where is the log in? Good work.I like your website.
 

splitpea

macrumors 6502a
Oct 21, 2009
984
225
Among the starlings
The line-height I've actually already set. Any bigger an it just looks completely awkward. I leave the body font to the size the user browser has it. That way they can have the font the size they need.
Most people adjust their font size to deal with what most sites do, which is reduce the font size from the default. The only people who won't be able to adjust it from what you set are IE 6 users, and then only if you specify the size in absolute units (px or pt).

Just saying.
 

decksnap

macrumors 68040
Apr 11, 2003
3,070
70
There's just a lot going on here. The top, middle and bottom all feel like different design directions.

Also, you may want to take a harder look at your copy, eg "The header really says it all... But that's not all.."
 

CANEHDN

macrumors 6502a
Dec 12, 2005
855
0
Eagle Mountain, UT
There's just a lot going on here. The top, middle and bottom all feel like different design directions.

Also, you may want to take a harder look at your copy, eg "The header really says it all... But that's not all.."
I agree with both these statements. The site does not seem to flow. I would also definitely reword the paragraph by the picture. The wording at the top throws me off too.
 

Renese-Williams

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 17, 2010
67
0
Stylistically it seems to be split three ways. I'd stick with only one of these:

I like this modern style, possibly a change of typeface would be good.


This one is good too, I really like the use of black, white, and one other color.


This one is pretty elegant but not very simple, it certainly works and there is nothing wrong with it but it doesn't seem to fit with your motto of simply elegant. Also, for simplicity's sake, I'd ditch the background graphic.

It is good that you show diverse design skills, a lot of people out there can only do one. :)
Looks like my Web Development teacher agreed. So I worked somewhat with her to edit it. ^^ She says it's better now. The updated site is up: http://www.acdesigns.cz.cc/

You had nicely did it, I often use to oppose the black or dark background but It is really looking very nice. The combination of colors is good, Font size and font style are perfect.You had given a different look to it. Where is the log in? Good work.I like your website.
Thanks alot! ^^ No login yet. Just a static website, after I'm converting it to a wordpress or joomla template.

Most people adjust their font size to deal with what most sites do, which is reduce the font size from the default. The only people who won't be able to adjust it from what you set are IE 6 users, and then only if you specify the size in absolute units (px or pt).

Just saying.
I thought if you specified the pixel size of the text the user couldn't re-size. You learn something new everyday. =D

There's just a lot going on here. The top, middle and bottom all feel like different design directions.

Also, you may want to take a harder look at your copy, eg "The header really says it all... But that's not all.."
Aye. You think it looks better now? http://www.acdesigns.cz.cc/

I changed my content. It sounds more professional now.

I agree with both these statements. The site does not seem to flow. I would also definitely reword the paragraph by the picture. The wording at the top throws me off too.
Fixed the wording. I think it's better now.

Thanks guys! ^^ Keep it coming! I'm getting lots of feedback!
 

Renese-Williams

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 17, 2010
67
0
seriously?

design 101: comic sans = NO NO!
*shrugs* If the design works it works. I don't see a reason for all the huff puff. Besides, I looked for a better looking web-safe font for the header and came up with nothing. Perhaps you can point me in the right direction?
 

angelwatt

Moderator emeritus
Aug 16, 2005
7,842
7
USA
I use Comic Sans every once and a while myself. I think it's fine to use in certain circumstances. On your site it looks OK, but having the cursive fonts near it seem like a conflict between the two fonts. The cursive font speaks to elegance, whereas Comic Sans is more fun and casual. You also have too many different types of fonts being used on the page. Generally, you want to stick to two at most.
 

Renese-Williams

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 17, 2010
67
0
I use Comic Sans every once and a while myself. I think it's fine to use in certain circumstances. On your site it looks OK, but having the cursive fonts near it seem like a conflict between the two fonts. The cursive font speaks to elegance, whereas Comic Sans is more fun and casual. You also have too many different types of fonts being used on the page. Generally, you want to stick to two at most.

Okay, two fonts. I know I want the cursive font. So, which other font would look better. Arial or Verdana?
 

snickelfritz

macrumors 65816
Oct 24, 2003
1,109
0
Tucson AZ
Kerning needs to be fixed in the script font.

You have got to be joking with the comic sans font in the header.
Sorry, but this is a violation of a longstanding axiom in professional design.

Arial would be my choice for a san serif font, and I would limit the font variation on the site. K.I.S.S.

There's a composition issue with the 3 boxes in the footer; the space between the boxes should not exceed the padding value IMO;

I think I would use 960 for the site width.

Negative space is not working in this layout; the design does not flow well.
whitehouse.gov is one of my favorite references for effective site design.
 

Renese-Williams

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 17, 2010
67
0
Kerning needs to be fixed in the script font.

You have got to be joking with the comic sans font in the header.
Sorry, but this is a violation of a longstanding axiom in professional design.

Arial would be my choice for a san serif font, and I would limit the font variation on the site. K.I.S.S.

There's a composition issue with the 3 boxes in the footer; the space between the boxes should not exceed the padding value IMO;

I think I would use 960 for the site width.

Negative space is not working in this layout; the design does not flow well.
whitehouse.gov is one of my favorite references for effective site design.
Good thing I'm not a professional, eh?

Changed the fonts to Arial, and Myriad Pro.

The footer should have been fixed, plus new design.

The width has been changed.
 

Renese-Williams

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 17, 2010
67
0
ahem, "professional" is code for "good".
BTW, your coding technique is excellent IMO; much easier to read than most sites.
I don't consider myself as a professional, because I consider myself an artist. And to me, that means more. Along side that, I have my philosophy as relates to art: There are no rules. You do what works. So, I'm not, not going to use a certain font just because a few people say I shouldn't; however, as angelwatt did, if you actually give me something WRONG with the font as it relates to my site, I'll gladly change it. As I did. That's just an explanation...

Thanks. I pride myself in clean code, and I have to have clean code. I'm really OCD about anything relating with technology. >.<
 

ezkimo

macrumors regular
Sep 12, 2002
216
0
I don't consider myself as a professional, because I consider myself an artist. And to me, that means more. Along side that, I have my philosophy as relates to art: There are no rules. You do what works. So, I'm not, not going to use a certain font just because a few people say I shouldn't; however, as angelwatt did, if you actually give me something WRONG with the font as it relates to my site, I'll gladly change it. As I did. That's just an explanation...

Thanks. I pride myself in clean code, and I have to have clean code. I'm really OCD about anything relating with technology. >.<
But your website is about design, not fine art -- they're not the same. As a designer you should have knowledge of typography. Comic sans has bizarre weighting and kerning and has a strong voice. You have to really think hard if having it on your website speaks your message.

If you're looking to do this professionally you were right to ditch it. Anyone in the industry will immediately close your site if set in comic sans, it's just the nature of the beast.
 

Renese-Williams

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 17, 2010
67
0
But your website is about design, not fine art -- they're not the same. As a designer you should have knowledge of typography. Comic sans has bizarre weighting and kerning and has a strong voice. You have to really think hard if having it on your website speaks your message.

If you're looking to do this professionally you were right to ditch it. Anyone in the industry will immediately close your site if set in comic sans, it's just the nature of the beast.
Design is art; life is art. That's all I'm asking. I don't a: "We all agreed not to use that font." What you said, "...has bizarre weighting." is perfect. Thanks for the response.
 

7on

macrumors 601
Nov 9, 2003
4,940
0
Dress Rosa
Design is art; life is art. That's all I'm asking. I don't a: "We all agreed not to use that font." What you said, "...has bizarre weighting." is perfect. Thanks for the response.
You have to remember what looks good to you doesn't look good to everybody. That's why people go to school for design, they learn to throw their opinions out the window and what is objectively good.

Wikipedia swiss design, that should lead you to the correct course.

In terms of design, it's generally bad form to use anything that comes free on your computer. It's yelling "I don't want to even try to find something better." Granted, this is web design so you're kind of limited as is - but there's ways around that limitation (i.e. images or @font-face).

EDIT:Saying that it's art won't cut it either. Art is not an excuse to make something look bad. I doubt using Comic Sans will make you the next Duchamp.
 

Renese-Williams

macrumors member
Original poster
Jan 17, 2010
67
0
You have to remember what looks good to you doesn't look good to everybody. That's why people go to school for design, they learn to throw their opinions out the window and what is objectively good.

Wikipedia swiss design, that should lead you to the correct course.

In terms of design, it's generally bad form to use anything that comes free on your computer. It's yelling "I don't want to even try to find something better." Granted, this is web design so you're kind of limited as is - but there's ways around that limitation (i.e. images or @font-face).

EDIT:Saying that it's art won't cut it either. Art is not an excuse to make something look bad. I doubt using Comic Sans will make you the next Duchamp.
I realize that. I try my best to create things that appeal to both me and others; if not, I design to their standards. And yes, it is bad form to use anything that comes free on the computer; however, with the font I have to use a web-safe font because I want to be able to edit the content on the fly. I do realize you can set it up so the user downloads the font temporarily, but I do not know how to do that.

EDIT Response:

I'm not using 'it's art' as an excuse to use comic sans. When I chose that font I only chose it with regards to the header, not the overall site. When someone actually said HOW in conflicted with the site, I took a look at it and agreed. I'm saying 'it's art' because you should not be limited in what you do just because of what people say. You should be able to use an unpopular font as long as it contributes to the design and overall appearance without regards to other opinions about the font, not the specific design.
 

7on

macrumors 601
Nov 9, 2003
4,940
0
Dress Rosa
And I'd make that bar behind Twitter, etc. headings not break i.e. extend 100%. And I'm not sold on the transparency. A simple solid color would work better.