This project was a very eye opening experience and straight off the bat I came to realise just how much work and dedication goes into concept design and how if done correctly it can make the build of a site a lot easier for the developers.
I am going to analyse this project so that I better understand it and can prepare myself better for the future.
What went well
The project on a whole went really to plan and not much went wrong apart from timing issues which I will get to at a later point. It became apparent from an early point that it was going to be a concept design and when I got my head around that the idea kind of just run away from itself.
To get the real idea for the personas I went out and talked to musicians and to venue landlords and this was a great way to get into the head of the users and really opened my eyes to what they wanted and why they wanted it. My personas are not just made up they have come from actual conversations with fans, musicians and landlords which really helped me.
I believe the design came on really well and looks clean and clear, which is what I was aiming for, I don’t know how I would change it if I could but maybe I would add a videos section to the site but I really didn’t want to over complicate it as the main of the site is to go and get information and I believe people can do that.
What didn’t go well
I would say timing, and this is an ongoing problem I am having with projects, I spend more time on the research and getting to know the project that I barely leave anytime in between to actually do the designing. This is something I need to work on and make sure in the final year I am better prepared and stick to a schedule. If I were in a real working environment this would not be acceptable and although I got the work finished and done on time, it probably would have been better had I hit milestones and stuck to task. This I would say is my biggest weak point and one I must overcome in the next year if I am to achieve my goals
Designing is another factor that I still struggle with and I am still over-complicating it and although I have seen my design skills improved, I still think they could be better and again this is something I am working towards. I have sat down with other designers and asked them for feedback and also how they look at things, why they look at things the way they do.
When doing research for this project I maybe didn’t look at the web trends as much as I should of and although I did look and use some of them I maybe should have used more.
What I would change
If I could change anything about this project it would be, being able to build it and not having to settle for concept design. I would have really been happy to get this concept off the ground but trying to learn 2 new frameworks and then do all the research, and designing as well as a build was just too much for the time limit so had to unfortunately settle for a concept design instead. I really think that the design could have been used to make it over into website that could have been used.
I again think this project as a success overall and a lot of hard work has gone into making it what it is. At times I strayed and took the researching too far and got off topic with what I was searching but overall I am happy with the outcome. I know that I have strong and weak points in the project but hopefully you will see that I have tried to solidify the strong points and improve on my weak points and the only one that I don’t think I am quite there yet is with timing but this I am sure will come with experience.
We used a new prototyping tool called invision. This app lets the user see what they can expect to see should the build go ahead. The prototype for this project can be found at http://invis.io/WRU6RW4H
Looking at how much the user experience is important, I found an Image from the site http://www.zdnet.com/blog/hinchcliffe/the-big-five-it-trends-of-the-next-half-decade-mobile-social-cloud-consumerization-and-big-data/1811
I have been looking into web trends and found a cool article about 18 trends that will happen in 2014. The article at https://econsultancy.com/blog/64096-18-pivotal-web-design-trends-for-2014 states what it thinks will happen in the future year of web design and I say I have to agree. Flat design is definitely going to grow, images are going to be bigger, we have seen a rise in big image websites that barely have any text in them and they look stunning however some and I mean by this the minority sometimes lack content and if a website does not have content then people are not going to come back just for some pretty pictures.
Some examples taken from the article:
14. Monochromatic design
Why use three colours when two – and shades thereof – will do? I’ve seen some lovely monochromatic palettes recently…
17. Bigger, better imagery
Massive pictures and background images – as opposed to patterns for texture – seem to be increasingly popular, and they certainly look nice on retina displays. Take a look at the recent Awwwards ‘Site Of The Day’ gallery and you’ll see what I mean.
18. Fixed position content / navigation
This is when you scroll down and the navigation (or some other content unit) stays on the page. Sometimes the navigation will reduce in height into a narrow bar, or a small icon that can be expanded (as per point eight). This is now becoming fairly commonplace among freshly-designed websites, and let’s stick with Awwwards for an example.
Mobile and tablet
Websites should really be responsive and with the way technology is going the time where all the web browsing will be done on a phone or tablet is not too far away. A survey produced in the Hot 100 issue of the Web designer (webdesigner.com for more info) showed that already more people use their phones to browse than ever before and a lot of big advertising companies are seeing this and only using these type of devices to advertise on.
Fonts are becoming more important in the game of web design and a badly placed font can lead to a site just not looking right. Sans serif and serif fonts can make a web site come to life but if you choose wrong it can have disastrous results when it comes to getting traffic into the site. You wouldn’t use comic sans on a website for say the NHS but you may use it on a children’s website.
The last one I found is again not a dedicated site but a little corner of a site that does many things. The above screenshot comes from the website http://www.skiddle.com/gigs/Hull/ . This site is horrible from the get go the use of multiple colours that would look better suited for a rave than a website, on this page alone you have bright yellow, bright pink and florescent green all sitting on a bright white background surrounded by black, it just does not work. Not only has this it barely had any music listing on which isn’t good if you are looking to do serious music hunting.
View (http://www.hullgigguide.co.uk/) has some music on but it’s not a full site dedicated to the music and this after the Hull gig guide was the best I could find. The look of the site is plain which from a design point I can understand with it being informative but information nowadays can be given in a nicely designed way as well and I just don’t see that in this page. The use of the very light blue heading bar and white text makes it very hard to read. The space spent to dedicate to music is barely more than a couple of pages and that to me is not enough and again this project is solely the aim is get across musicians in Hull and get their names out there for all to see.