web design… #2

…what are we talking about…

what is web design…

Design is an interesting subject. We design as a set of ideas followed by a design-process, and the end result is also known as design. In fact—since so few can see the foregoing stages, most people see only the end result as design.

Since so many can create something and launch it as web pages, the only real differences is how the foregoing stages turns into a design of any quality. It still doesn't have to be a good design though.

Quality in a design is subject to personal preferences. That's why there's room for so many different designs on the web. Someone will always like it, and some will always dislike it. The rest is a question of "who's who"...

Some are able to come up with a great design no matter "who" they are, and some will never be able to create anything but copies. Plenty space out here, so I don't care about quality in a design as long as it feels right.

state of the art, or what..?

Art is whatever one can get away with, and that's a pretty wide definition. I happen to like "simple complexity", so I design web pages that way. Sometimes I like the resulting design too, but whether it's "web-art" or "web-carpentry" or "web-design", or "just plain stupid", is not important.

One thing I'm pretty sure of; it's uniquely me. That may not last forever though, as someone may claim they did it first (whatever "it" is). No problem, they can't fake me – not even with a copy.

They can't fake you either (unless you're just another copy)...

the stage is set…

I work in stages, and I go back and forth between these stages. I never finish anything, but I release it if/when it feels alright. I can always give it some finishing touches later.

Some designs lasts a while, while others are very short-lived. A design like this one may last qute a while with some minor changes made to it. That's because the structure is so solid and flexible—and some even call it complex (I wonder why).

Yes, the structure is part of the design, because I can't do what I want without it. Planning and coding a structure is the most important part of the design-process. That's xhtml with some very basic CSS, and after that the creative stage is entered.

Nothing has to be what it looks like, or the other way around. I can do everything (on screens), so it is time to dump ideas down the drain or put them back in their respective drawers. A web page doesn't need much, but it has to look right.

imagine this…

I love images on a web page. They add something that code and style and colors can't do on their own. Another great thing is that images can be turned off.

This page will survive without images. It'won't look great but it won't break or lose anything important. No spacer-gifs here.

Images may add some information on their own, or they're just decorative. I do not always see the difference between those functions, as they are both important parts of design.

I often use images in a way that makes them border-line cases. Those who can see them (and that is most visitors, I guess) will be able to pick up a little more than those who can't. Yet, no essential information is lost without them.

imagine that…

Some old tricks might be worth mentioning, like gif-transparency. It's one of my favorites, and I've used it on several images on this page. Yes, it's really a very old method...

Overlapping is another old trick used here, and it seems to work as intended. I also avoid any smoothing-effects on fonts in images, as I want them to stay sharp. Not even "sharp" can do that...

sincerely  georg; sign

Hageland 08.nov.2004
last rev: 07.nov.2005

web design…

...the man is crazy...
...now he even think of himself as a web designer...


  • introduction
  • Table of Content


  • this is PTL web-design
  • more about design
  • CSS sledgehammer
  • Lynx enhanced page
  • Print enhanced page
  • Projection enhanced
  • Small Screen enhanced page
  • validity of xhtml and CSS
  • html tidy
  • Opera and me
  • Firefox vs. IE
the usual
  • the author
  • Copyright
the unusual
  • Molly speaks up
the additional
  • Examples
  • Demo pages

Dear web design experts:

I design web-pages and web-sites for a lot of reasons - mostly because I like to explore.

There isn't all that many ways to design web pages for screens…
…but they may all be unique and usable.

Dear web surfer:

Everyone has the right to their own opinions.
I don't freeze-dry mine, as they are bound to change.