Category Archives: Inspiration

Question everything generally thought to be obvious

—Dieter Rams

For me, right now, this means – rethink all of my design tendencies. For example: Is Helvetica right for this project too? Does this website need to be centered (margin: 0 auto; for the web nerds)? Do buttons need  rounded corners and a gradient?

In your profession or daily life, what is it that you need to question?

All men dream; but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds awake to find that it was vanity; But the dreamers of day are dangerous men. That they may act their dreams with open eyes to make it possible.

—T.E. Lawrence

Here’s one question that comes to mind after reading that quote… What dream or idea do you have living deep inside you that you have yet to act on?

 

 

I couldn’t help but notice a few striking similarities between current GOP candidate websites and Obama’s 2008 campaign website and the current White House website.

Glowing Blue Background

It seems that the new political design trend is going to be glowing backgrounds. Most of the candidate’s sites use a glowing blue background of some sort (see newt.org and michellebachmann.com)

Home Icon & Typography

The designers for Ron Paul’s website must have been inspired by whitehouse.gov because the navigation typography is almost identical. The flag icon on whitehouse.gov links to the homepage, while the home icon on Paul’s site links to the homepage. While not similar in design, the unique idea of using a homepage icon in that particular position is pretty similar given the other similarities.

However, I give props to Ron Paul’s web guys for actually making the navigation real text and not images, like the White House site. To be fair, whitehouse.gov has their full sitemap in real text in the footer.

Right Column Shadows

This one is minor, but I had to mention it because of how similar other elements are between whitehouse.gov and Ron Paul’s website. The right column on both sites are the same exact width as well. Inspired much?

The hokey, ‘look inspired and into the distance’ Photo.

Also known as the 40-year-old virgin portrait look. This is only funny because I really want to imagine the photographer holding up a picture of the Obama 2008 website and directing Bachmann to pose similarly. I feel like she forgot where the camera was one other time too… I kid, I kid!

Is there anything wrong with this?

Of course not. There is no copyright infringement here. Is it funny when you notice it? Yes. Mostly because of how different these candidates are from President Obama in every other way.

Here’s to great design that draws some of it’s inspiration from Obama 2008!

Looking for someone to design your website (or logo)?

I’m your man! Check out my portfolio and get in touch with me. Let’s make your next project awesome!

I've known Kristina for probably 5 years and it was a pleasure to design her wedding invitations!

The script typeface is called 'Buttermilk' and I purchased it from a great illustrator/type designer named Jessica Hische.

The swirls were customized from an original set of 'swirls' I had. The secondary typeface used for body copy is Baskerville Old Face. It seemed to go well with the elegance of Buttermilk

A person tends to critique a design in one of several ways. The most common, and usually least valuable, is by gut reaction.

D. Keith Robinson

I totally agree here. I remember back when I interned at Workbench Magazine (now My Home My Style) and the Assistant Art Director, Doug Appleby would critique the magazine spreads I designed. Note: I would get his advice and critiques multiple times a day. He would always look at it for a minute or two before even saying a word. I believe he was really analyzing what I designed and what he thinks of it, instead of just saying his gut reaction.

We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act, but a habit.

— Aristotle

Be a first rate version of yourself, not a second rate version of someone else.

—Judy Garland

Figure out what makes you ‘you’ and do that and do it well.

Great thoughts on the six things Derek Sivers wishes he learned before starting school at Berklee. Oh yeah, he also founded CDBaby.com.

What are some things you wish you learned before starting school or your job?

Just because something looks good doesn’t mean its useful. And just because something is useful does not make it beautiful.

Joshua Brewer

Think Google – amazingly simple and useful, but not beautifully designed.

There is a difference between usability and beautiful design. It can be ugly and usable or it can be beautiful and unusable.

Every once in a while you find something that is both usable and beautiful. For this: Think iPod.