Questions about designing the aesthetic look of websites, both practical and theoretical. For questions about coding the structure of a website, please go to Stack Overflow. For questions about the user experience, please go to UX.SE. Ask anything related to designing graphics and visual layouts ...

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43
votes
5answers
5k views

Are “web-safe” colors still important?

Years ago, it was always strongly recommended that web designers should only use web-safe colors. Have studies been done to see if this is still the case? If so, what's the answer? Edited to add… ...
38
votes
16answers
170k views

Web Safe Alternative to Myriad Pro Font?

Is there any font that I can use in my font stack that is more or less similar to Myriad Pro and web safe?
36
votes
6answers
49k views

Is there a free 'Helvetica Neue' alternative?

Does anyone know any other fonts similar to Helvetica Neue (free for commercial use)? I'm working on a big website project where 'Helvetica Neue' is used heavily. I need a font that looks almost the ...
32
votes
6answers
6k views

Designing around an awful logo

I'm looking for some opinions on how to approach an interesting problem I've encounted. I dabble in UX/graphic design, specifically for the web. Mostly static sites. I do this all on my own time as ...
29
votes
12answers
1k views

What web graphics formats to use?

Web sites can contain JPEG, GIF,PNG, SVG format graphics. Which ones should be used, and when?
29
votes
7answers
2k views

Should web designers make a free mockup?

I have some potential clients that ask to see something before accept the work. Now, should I make, for example, a free mockup or It's better to find another client?
27
votes
4answers
127k views

Helvetica Neue Equivalent on Google Fonts?

Does anybody know a font on Google Fonts that is very similar to Helvetica Neue?
23
votes
5answers
1k views

What is meant by “busy”?

What do web developers mean when they think something will make their site look "busy"? What gives this feel of busy-ness?
22
votes
11answers
2k views

Do web designers need to know how to code?

As a front end web developer I work with many different designers and sometimes find it frustrating working with design comps where no thought was put into how to accomplish the design in basic CSS ...
22
votes
2answers
2k views

How can I improve my color selection skill?

I'm a web developer, started to become a web designer. However, I think my understanding of colors is not practical yet. There are tools out there that can give you color harmonies, and more stuff, ...
21
votes
11answers
17k views

What DPI should be used for what situations?

I've been seeing the word 'DPI' pop up quite a lot when I export my work out in Photoshop and Illustrator. While I know that DPI stands for 'dots per inch', and that if you have too low of a DPI on an ...
20
votes
12answers
46k views

Is there a standard width for designing web page mockups?

Is there a standard size for the width of a website in a mockup? What is that size? Why?
19
votes
9answers
4k views

I need suggestions for an 'undelete' icon

Trying to come up with a undelete icon, the best ideas I've come up with so far are an upside down wastebin with rubbish underneath it. It is going to be placed on a user profile page that lists user ...
19
votes
5answers
2k views

What should one ask when gathering graphic design requirements for a website

I'm a software/web developer and recently we've been working with a graphic designer that lives in another state, so the contact with the client falls into my responsibility in all aspects, and one of ...
18
votes
8answers
1k views

What are common mistakes that you see in “professional” designs? [closed]

This might be too subjective but I'm curious about other peoples' experiences. Mods, please close if this is too far into "not a real question" territory. I see many questions on this site about ...
18
votes
4answers
705 views

How to direct users eyes on a website

There is a common principle in photography that a photo should lead the viewer's eyes. This is frequently accomplished with a line that runs across the photo. Recognizing how the observer will scan ...
18
votes
1answer
951 views

What are standard ratios for typography on the web?

In laying out a web design, I often try to make sure that my typography is proportional and consistent. However, I haven't been able to find any definitive articles or resources on what ratios and ...
17
votes
7answers
6k views

How to answer the ever-present 'make the logo bigger'?

Just like most of us, I regularly face the client desire to 'make the logo bigger'. Especially in web designs, clients want to inflate their logos to ridiculous sizes. How do I effectively counter ...
17
votes
8answers
805 views

Fireworks for website design - why?

I've used Photoshop to design (more or less) every website I've made in the past 9 or 10 years. I hear people going on about Fireworks saying that it's excellent for web design and prototyping. When ...
17
votes
3answers
9k views

Should I Save Images Intended for the Web as PNG or SVG?

Possible Duplicate: What web graphics formats to use? When exporting out images intended for websites, should I save it as PNG (Transparent background) or a SVG? Why?
16
votes
10answers
12k views

Do web frameworks such as Bootstrap or HTML5 boilerplate offer anything to a designer (not developer)?

Note, this is about design much more than development. I build sites from scratch with completely hand written CSS and HTML. I've known about pre-build css templates such as Bootstrap or HTML5 ...
16
votes
2answers
344 views

What is the effect of ligatures in web, regarding SEO

All designers love ligatures but vanilla web typography just sucks. I heard of smartypants that solves many of thoses issues, bringing sexy quotes, gorgeous ampersands and all. It's just perfect, ...
15
votes
4answers
569 views

How to hire a graphic designer?

I am developing the backend for a website. I always had the trouble of making an attractive design for my websites and have never hired any graphic designer yet. I have no logo nor web template. What ...
14
votes
7answers
3k views

Alternative to Lorem Ipsum (dummy text) for websites

Lorem Ipsum has been the known default for dummy text. Per a search the last discussion in regards to alternatives is two years old. I thought I would post a new thread on this topic. So, what are ...
14
votes
4answers
1k views

What are the steps in designing a website?

Calling all Web Designers :) I am starting to make a website for a small business in my hometown and it will be my first proper project. I have made sites in the past, which I have done for leisure. ...
14
votes
2answers
608 views

What to do if your website design got stolen?

Let say your website design got stolen. You saw your design being used from a different site or company. The only difference from your design is the logo and some images. What actions can you do to ...
12
votes
9answers
4k views

Should I ask for payment for my logo and website design when I delivered them late?

I have designed a logo and a website for a company. Because I took a little longer than usual (3 weeks), they are talking about hiring someone else. I delivered the designs, (10 Logo Designs with at ...
12
votes
6answers
3k views

Learning Photoshop just for web designing

I want to become a web designer, so I'm watching a lot of Photoshop video tutorials, but some of those tutorials are not useful for web designing. For example, some movies are about skin, or teeth or ...
12
votes
5answers
570 views

Where can I go to recieve feedback on web design projects?

Are there are any web design forums where designers can submit their work to receive feedback and advice? I am looking for a place that I can seek advice on how to improve my designs.
12
votes
2answers
709 views

Clients always think they are a better designer than I am.

When I am designing a new website or application I am very meticulous to get every detail right so it is beautiful while still user friendly. Almost always however, the client has better ideas. They ...
12
votes
1answer
654 views

How can a design be balanced and yet have a focal point?

The concept of a focal point seems to be a fundamental one in web design, yet doesn't a focal point mean a page cannot be balanced? Surely by definition a focal point means that the page's 'weight' ...
12
votes
5answers
880 views

Developer to Designer path: How To

Being a developer wanting to be a designer, I'm really interested in learning how to create top notch UI for websites, mobile apps, etc. However, I know nothing about PhotoShop or anything related to ...
12
votes
3answers
664 views

How can I showcase a working example of my past web development work, without linking to the constantly changing live site?

Whenever I design a website, I think it's useful to not only show screen captures but also coding abilities. Unfortunately, most of the time, clients end up editing websites themselves and if ...
11
votes
11answers
9k views

Should I (a web designer) stick with gimp, or buy Photoshop?

I am a web designer. I do not use/own any adobe products... except for watching flash videos online of course. I currently use gimp 2.6 for my graphic needs. It's free and I know how to use it. The ...
11
votes
5answers
338 views

What's a good (and easy) way to show that a screenshot is a screenshot?

I'm using Mac OS X 10.6 and I like the system screen grab tool. By default when you grab an entire window it will put a bit of a shadow / gradient below it, with transparency, using a PNG image - ...
11
votes
3answers
336 views

How should you web design with foreign typography

Some web design and development projects client's will request capabilities for a foreign translation in their site. How can you account for this and what are some good practices for content ...
11
votes
4answers
272 views

What are good places to start learning web typography and layout?

I have been a digital designer since 1999. I am self taught. However; my biggest weakness is spacing, grids and developing pages that feel balanced, as well as have strong typographic hierarchy. I ...
10
votes
9answers
2k views

Is it ethical to copy the work of other designers?

I am neither a graphic designer nor do I consider myself one. I have little grasp of colour theory, and basic knowledge of design principles. I do possess a sense of what looks good, though, and I am ...
10
votes
4answers
892 views

With the invention of CSS3, should a web designer use Photoshop?

I see that many designers create beautiful web design works in Photoshop, but now with the arrival of CSS3, when they want to change that to HTML & CSS, they simply start from scratch and create ...
10
votes
5answers
424 views

What is the best way to indicate that you can scroll in an area when the area doesn't have a scrollbar?

The only thing I could think of was saying: "Scroll to see full menu" above. What are some other ways people are doing it?
10
votes
7answers
4k views

Is online freelancing a viable source of income?

Fed up with the university life, I thought I would try to be a freelancer. I am familiar with coding. How can I earn money online as a web designer? Is there any reliable way to earn money? I saw ...
10
votes
4answers
465 views

Do high-content areas of a website need to be white/light-colored?

Many websites that are designed to be easy to read (eg. nytimes.com or ilovetypography.com) use white backgrounds with black fonts to make the content easy to read. Is it necessary to only use light ...
10
votes
4answers
2k views

Styling clean flat-design buttons so they show affordance, and look 'well designed'

I started a tiny CSS framework recently. (http://minfwk.com if anyone's interested) I quickly banged out an initial design for some buttons. After asking for feedback on UX StackExchange (and ...
10
votes
3answers
587 views

How do I work with a logo that has what seems like too many colors?

The company I'm designing a site for has an logo that I must work with. All of my ideas for standard color palettes and layouts are challenged by this logo.. Most [good looking] logos I've worked with ...
10
votes
4answers
1k views

What is the general process for planning and developing a new website?

I work at an agency mostly focused in software development however sometimes a microsite is accessory to one of our solutions and we need to build it. I'm trying to define a clear process for ...
10
votes
1answer
1k views

How to make a color appear the same on different backgrounds?

Background on color perception: Due to the nature of the human eye and visual processing by the brain, there's an optical illusion that the same color will look different depending on the background. ...
9
votes
5answers
540 views

Mockups: Coding vs Drawing?

This isn't about web design but about interface design in general. Is better to code Interface Mockups or "draw" them in a graphics program, like GIMP, Photoshop, etc.?
9
votes
8answers
16k views

Where can I get images for commercial use?

I am running a web site design service for local small business owner. I want avoid legal issues on the images I use. Usually, the images found on Flickr are forbidden for commercial use. Where would ...
9
votes
3answers
6k views

Charging an Intellectual Property transfer fee for design work

So, you've finished a design job (eg. a logo design) and the client asks for your IP surrounding the logo, eg copyright, original artwork files, notes, sketches, all of that stuff that went into ...
9
votes
5answers
41k views

Text in my Photoshop image looks “blurry”

I am creating a website header in Photoshop CS5, however when I look at it, the text looks very blurry and I have no idea why. I use the Web preset. What do you recommend for the sharpest and best ...