Web design as a profession has been around for over two decades. While it might seem like some standard practices have been set in stone, it is still a very young field, ripe with potential for the creative mind. If you’re starting a new project and want to approach it with a fresh take, the thing to remember is that progress is driven by establishing rules, then finding interesting ways to break them.
Of course, this doesn’t mean you should ignore tried and tested methods. To put together innovative work that still engages the user, a careful balance of old and new in required, something we keep in mind on every web design that we produce.
Case Study: Sorrin IT
There’s nothing more natural than flicking through the pages of a book. After all, it’s not often you see somebody unsure of which way the cover should open up, confused over what page they should be reading, or at a loss as to how to get to the last chapter of a story.
This basic reading experience is something all web designs should try and live up to, yet you’ve probably seen people scratch their heads when they attempt to navigate a cluttered website.
One of the simplest solutions is to implement a burger bar that hides your information and buttons until they’re needed, however, you might not know how to create a style for it that makes your website stand out from the crowd.
Take a look at the recent design we put together for Sorrin IT.
When you open the burger menu, the banner darkens to allow for easier reading.
Within the burger are a series of colour coded buttons. Blue leads to pages relevant to the website itself, while Green, the brand colour, is used on the majority of the buttons and only leads to products that Sorrin provides.
What’s more, the buttons are in style with the logo, they spill out from the burger menu, and the spacing of them changes to suit the window size so that they remain easy for a person to parse.
These design choices flowed naturally from the user’s needs as well as the branding rules that we ourselves established. Things became more interesting though when we altered the company logo to become a responsive button in the burger menu. It’s an element that’s unique from other websites, and most notably of all, breaks the design rules at the touch of a button while also feeling completely natural – You probably didn’t even notice that it changed until I pointed it out.
Of course, the opportunities you find to break the rules aren’t always worth a blog entry. On Sorrin for example, the black and white bespoke photography created a distinct professional look, but we had to know when to use colour in order to get the user’s attention:
And the dark brown tint on the footer wasn’t really a feature of the brand, but it was necessary to bring a stark, final feeling to the end of the page:
More often than not, when you choose to break the rules, it will only amount to little adjustments like these, but it all adds up to create a web design that’s interesting and strong in its own right. Then, once in a while, you get a big idea and the chance to smash through previous conventions.