Tips for print designers wanting to do webdesign

Added Sunday, January 10th, 2010 at 2:08 am by

Print designers have a hard time adapting to webdesign. And I can understand why. We are required to think different, and more technical than usual. Lime green becomes #9dff33 and moving images around becomes waaayy more difficult! So here are some tips for starting out with designing for the web.

There are no such thing as a standard height!

I’ve worked with a bunch of graphic designers, taking their PSD files and making a website that actually work from it. And often they want their site to be 500 pixels high. Why would you limit your website content like that. People will scroll if you have something good to say or show them. And you have no idea how high your users browser screen is anyway. Make a design that will work with scrolling and you are much better of.

I Want to use “ITC Avant Garde Gothic Extra Light Oblique” for all headlines!

Or any other font for that matter. If you want to use special fonts, you have two options. Images or a replacement technique like Cufon or sIFR. It is possible, but please do it the right way and don’t just try to make it work through your normal font-family call in CSS.

Keep your html clean

There is really no reason to over specify everything in your html. Use your CSS to do things like .content h2 {} instead of h2.headlinecontent {}. And please try to stir away from “div soup (unnecessary div tags)” – It has a really bad taste :) No seriously, keep your html as clean as possible, it will make your editing time much less and errors are easier to spot.

Making everything stick to the lower right corner is a REALLY bad idea

Oh yeah I’ve tried that. That gets really ugly when you resize your browser window :) Just don’t try to do it before you have the skill and knowledge to know the consequences.

Keep the focus on what matters!

The Content, the product – That should be your main focus. Designers that have works in the news field especially has a tendency to clutter up their first web layouts with way too many flashy objects that take focus away from products and content on the page. Just being aware of this fact will make you a great deal better at webdesign. Most designers from the print world seem to forget this when creating websites even though they are great at doing it when they work on printed mediums.

Just a couple of small tips on going from print to web. And if you are looking to expand skill set to the online world. Then it is really just a matter of putting in the time to learn it. It’s easy enough if you work at it. And if you want more tips on how to do it, you are more than welcome to contact me.




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