Web Design Tips, Tutorials & More!

Overcoming the block

Every artist has to encounter block in some way. It doesn’t matter whether you are a designer or a writer. Creative block is part and parcel of the creative spirit. Overcoming the block can be a problem; however, it is extremely important to use both your mental state and some tools to do so. Creative block is a terrible state to be in because a lot of it is mental. You are telling yourself you can’t find the beginning of the idea.

The first thing to do is to have a few tools you can use. Once you get started on the project and forget the fact you don’t feel inspired, inspiration will begin to flow again. It really is more a mental block than a creative block so overcoming it with tools to enable you to forget the mental state will in actual fact overcome the lethargic feeling.

Start with using a grid. The 960 Grid is a good one. Set the grid up with some basic structure. Now take a word or two that the client has given you and use this as a connection point. Create a small button with the word on it and place it on the site in a prominent place. That word was something the client wanted to use, or they wouldn’t have mentioned it. The button can be used as a link. Color is unimportant at this stage, although should the client have a theme of colors in their company use one of those. In fact, make a color chart with the company colors listed to enable you to have a quick reference and to keep their brand going. A tool to use to do this is available on ColourLovers. Here you can create the entire required color scheme of the client.

If they already have a favicon, make a copy of it and place it somewhere on the page.  The best place to place it is in the heading area. The company logo should also be included.

This is the start of your design, and already you have 4 items there. Should the client have given you background information to the company, you are in luck because you can use this to create a write up.  Don’t worry too much about what it says as it can always be changed. As you carry along with these small items you will start to find the juices flowing. Sometimes it’s as small as making a good footer.  Your footer usually contains things about the company and the company head office phone numbers and means of contact. This can also include their terms of service, etc. all of which need to be included in the website. If they are selling anything don’t forget to include the California Child Protection Act.

By now you already have a lot of your basics, and although you didn’t realize it the site is starting to grow. It’s time now to look again at the page and start with things such as your navigation menu. Include your basics in the menu you place either on the top or the side. Include a few of the photos the client might have provided or a few stock photos to blend with what is already happening.

Space the items well to create a flow of the design with adequate white space in between but augmenting the flow. You do not want dead white space you want active white space. Now play with the design by moving things.

I am willing to bet by this time, the juices are flowing.


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