The Design Process

The Design Process

The Design Process


When a website designer develops his design, it often appears as though he is working without a set plan or goal in mind, instead preferring to discover the best design through his own personal style and opinions. However, without a set plan of aesthetics, how does the designer know what will work and what will not in his website design?

Is good design based on the opinion of individuals, or does it follow a deeper set of principles that are engrained into the creative regions of the human brain? However clean, complex or simple a design may appear, it still follows these fundamental values: such as layout, presentation, colour scheme, and overall quality and consistency. Whether a client requests a complex 3D flash website design or a clean and corporate look, a talented designer can instantly understand what aspects will work, and which will not, based on these creative principles. A top designer can indentify troublesome areas, and offer alternatives, whilst still being able to communicate to the client his reasons and solutions.

A top website designer must have both a reason and an explanation for everything he does: why that typeface, why those choices of colour? The designer must first consider that his design must be flexible, to suit a range of computer screen resolutions and of course, today’s compact IPads and Smartphone screens, whilst always retaining its high quality.

So how does the brain decide these aesthetic qualities, telling us why something looks ‘good’ or ‘bad’? The brain processes visuals through countless different neurons, electrical signals that interpret different aspects and locations of a design. Design and creativity stimulate these neurons, much more than a simple random display of images on a screen would. This happens for a number of reasons:

Firstly, the brain compiles similar shapes and colours into groups, and seeks to find connections between the objects. These pieces, like those of a jigsaw puzzle, are absorbed into the brain to create the complete picture (or, in this case a website design). It works in the same way as seeing several pieces of a jigsaw puzzle, and the brain completing the image for you.

Balance and symmetry, too, are vital for creating a good design, whether it is a glossy, corporate, stylish, clean, minimal, arty…symmetry and balance in nature equal beauty and attractiveness (the more symmetrical the human face, the more beautiful it is remarked to be). This balance can be created by matching a text box on one side of the design with an image opposite.

Exaggeration is also a necessary tool in website design. In fact, many artists and designers often exaggerate the impact of natural light sources (such as spotlighting) in their designs. Exaggeration and enhancing of colour, line and contrast too all create stronger reactions in the brain. A designer should never be afraid to create visual problems for the mind to solve, such as a trick of light and shadow.

A client usually has a predetermined design in mind, and usually does not know what will and will not work in the design phase unless they have experience in website design themselves. It is up to the website designer to put his best ideas forward, and to explain why and how his design works best, and will attract the most website traffic, through the usage of these principles of the creative mind.

Concentrate on the essentials. In good design, less is always more.


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