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What are the main components of web design that can be sketched on paper? I refer to the visuals of a design that could be developed by sketches and drawings. Like a sketch of a Web-page view in browsers, smartphones and tablets.

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closed as not a real question by Scott, Jack, Yisela, plainclothes, e100 Jan 16 '13 at 18:25

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Aside from actual interaction, what can't be sketched on paper? –  plainclothes Jan 12 '13 at 6:10
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Can you clarify the question? In general, as plainclothes states, moat anything can be sketched on paper (I'd say, though not ideal, you can actually do some rudimentary interaction design with paper prototypes as well) –  DA01 Jan 12 '13 at 21:59
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1 Answer 1

Almost all my web designs start out in Photoshop (think of that as electronic paper), and the rest of them really do begin with pencil on a pad.

My initial renderings block out

  • headers and logos
  • menus
  • static content
  • dynamic content
  • database results
  • forms

This is done on at least one page of each major section, as well as I usually create a paper site map of the project, breaking it down into first stage, second, etc., along with due dates or milestones.

I use a second pass over my sketch to

  • determine if the individual elements are within my skill set (or my team's)
  • or if I will need assistance or to farm it out
  • determine approximate timelines for each portion
  • allocate server assets and determine if anything needs to be reallocated or procured

The "rougher" the sketch, the more conceptual the planning, the more important the "chalk talk" or sketches become for building the parameters of the project,and getting everyone's buy-in early on.

Considering the multiplicity of multiple devices to design for today, a paper sketch might be the best place to begin when developing the fluid design required. Simulate the viewport widths with a "to scale" frame on the paper and integrate the required elements, but be sure to do so in a manner that best fits each device.

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