Kaitlyn Janine's Blog

my crazy adventures in school

Portfolio Comps. 03/28/2010

Filed under: CAT 274 — kaitlynjanine @ 1:49 pm
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First Comp, with an RSS Feed from my blog and a blurb about me:

Comp A

Second Comp with an RSS feed, a bigger photo, and no blurb:

Comp B


Week Nine. 03/20/2010

Filed under: CAT 274 — kaitlynjanine @ 7:37 pm
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This week was all about using Fireworks and Photoshop to create comps and working sites, and placement of elements. Fireworks and Photoshop are useful for creating rollover nav and other elements, but when exporting images and code, not everything is included, so Dreamweaver is also a vital part to creating pages in these programs as well.

Another neat Adobe TV video. This one’s about using Adobe applications to simplify the design process.

A Dao of Web Design

by John Allsopp

I completely agree. Although I am by no means advanced at this point, I always try to think about whether or not the site I am trying to design will be accessible, and I try not to use elements in my sites that aren’t accessible for everyone. I try to make my pages look good, of course, but it’s of no use to anyone if they’re not readable to people with older browsers, or to people with poor vision or no vision. I try not to be obsessed with making the site look the same on every platform, or every browser, but I do make sure that it works on every platform and every browser. Of course, I am ecstatic if they all look the same, too- who am I kidding?

Five Principles to Design By

Blasting the Myth of Above the Fold

Kind of eye-opening for me, since I design so that my content is always “above the fold.” This will probably change the way I think about designs. Although I hate scrolling, and if the site is too long, I definitely won’t scroll.

Although I added a new post with my comps, here are the links:

Comp #1


Week Eight. 03/13/2010

Filed under: CAT 274 — kaitlynjanine @ 8:16 pm
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So, things are picking up! This week we revised our animations and resumes, finalized our banners, and I completed my design document. I am really looking forward to getting a move on learning how to get my concept to become reality.

This week we really focused on typography (which is really not my strength, unfortunately). On the web, the best way to set font size for usability is to set a body font size in a percentage, and then use ems for the rest of your styles. This prevents errors in IE and allows users to enlarge fonts at will.

I learned that there are only 9 safe fonts for the web- Arial, Arial Black, Comic Sans MS, Courier New, Georgia, Impact, Times New Roman, Trebuchet MS, and Verdana. My favorites out of these are definitely Trebuchet and Georgia.

If there is a font you really want to use, and it’s not frequently changing text, you can make the text into an image.
Bearskinrug does this.

You can also use sIFR- Scalable Inman Flash Replacement. sIFR uses flash and Javascript to replace text. If a user doesn’t have Javascript active, the fonts display as defaults.
ABC News and Nike both use this method.

Some places to learn about using sIFR:
Mike Davidson’s sIFR Page
Mark WUbbin’s sIFR Wiki

Also, hopefully in the future Adobe will release their core fonts to the public domain in response to Andrei Michael Herasimchuck’s plea.

We learned the terms of typography, and also about the different categories. You never want to use more than 4 typefaces on your page, including your logo. Never use two different serif or two different sans-serif typefaces.

The best thing was the list of all of the font sites! I’m only going to post the free and shareware sites here because there are way too many!

Free and Shareware
  1001 Fonts
  Da Font
  Wanted Fonts

My links for this week:

  Final Banner
  Global Giving Banner


Week Seven. 03/04/2010

Filed under: CAT 274 — kaitlynjanine @ 11:51 am
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So here we are- almost to the mid-point of the semester. So far I have learned a lot about Fireworks and Dreamweaver that I didn’t know before. This week we learned about swf and gif animation, and created gif animations using Photoshop and Fireworks. We also learned about search engines and domain names.

We mainly learned about gif animations this week, but the difference between gif and swf animations are that gif are screen-by-screen raster images and swf are truly interactive vector animations.

Gif animations are still in use because they are well-known, widely supported, no plug-ins are needed to display them, and they are treated like static files, which means they can have alt tags. We learned from several sources on how to optimize animated gifs, but I think my favorite was optimizing them right in Fireworks or Photoshop. The one article we read was a little outdated (originally written in 1997). Although it seems that the information is still valid, some of the programs they mentioned don’t exist anymore, and when they wrote the article, Fireworks had just been released. The trick to optimizing animated gifs is to minimize colors, and minimize the area that change occurs in.

We learned a lot about designing for good results in search engines. This was very interesting to me, because I never really thought too much about the process behind it, I just create my Meta Tags and go on about my business. Some of the things I read really opened my eyes, and there are some great sites out there to learn more about Search Engine Optiization (SEO).
  Search Engine Watch
  Free SEO Tools
  Search Engine Optimization
  SE Roundtable

  Search Engine Placement
  8 Web Design Tactics to Help You When You’re Stuck

We also learned more about domain names. The www is a third level domain, the .com , .net, etc is the top level domain, and the personalized part that you choose is the secondary domain. Domain names can be purchased through a registrar. A registrar is a company that is accredited by ICANN to provide domain names. The first ever(and the most expensive I’ve ever seen!) is Network Solutions. They were awarded a grant in 93 to develop the first domain registration service, and until 99, they were the only registrars. We were provided with a list of common registrars, such asGo Daddy and Register, but I used iPage to purchase my domain name. Register didn’t seem cheap, either. Go Daddy is where is someday wish to host my site, but they are a little too expensive for me right now.

12 Rules for Choosing the Right Domain Name

Links for this week:

  Animated Banner