Monday February 18, 2008

This Is Where I Write The "Hey Internets, I Redesigned Teh Site" Post and You All Pretend To Be Excited.

Hard-refresh those browsers, kids. Version 15 of Jaredigital.com (snappy codename forthcoming) is alive and kicking. Somebody cue up The Breakfast Club soundtrack.

v15 Jaredigital

Dude, Why?

See, I’ve actually wanted to redesign for a couple of years, but both the time and the design “spark” eluded me as life continued to speed up. In classic ‘designer designs for himself’ form, everything I came up with was total garbage. To add another layer of self-imposed pressure, I became more and more fearful as time went on as to what kind of coding horror I might unleash upon the web, since I have not written a single line of code in roughly 2.5 years.

Something needed to be done, though. As much as I enjoyed my time with Trapper Keeper, my lengthening redesign cycles meant that if I somehow managed to design something that didn’t make me dry heave, I would have to reasonably expect that it would have to get a lot of things right. I wouldn’t get another chance anytime soon, if history was any indication. And with freelance work picking up a bit, there was extra incentive to present a more competent image.

Let’s Do Some Serious Navelgazing.

Trapper Keeper was pretty out there, and I got a lot of positive feedback about it over the years. It really represented a time in my life when I was learning and growing a whole lot, and really looking for a place to bust out of some of the professional constraints I was under.

This design, I think, is pretty representative of myself at present. It’s decidedly more classic and “grown up” looking. The Home page puts featured portfolio work front & center. Weblog content is more visually designed instead of just dumped out in a list. Stylistically, it represents how my current personal style has changed in 3 years. It eschews the “web 2.0 look”; no gradients, no dropshadows, no bubbly fonts, no comment count indicators, no cruft. It attempts to be classic and simple without being boring.

Code { Feeling: Good; }

One of my goals for the new year has been to get back — and as uncomfortably close — to front-end coding as I possibly can, even if that means doing so on my own time. It was nice to get back into the swing of things, and hopefully I haven’t committed any grievous code sins. There are plenty of things to clean up still (IE6, you are at the bottom of my to-do list), but it feels pretty clean overall. No validation checks, plz.

Fin

I expect this design will be around for a good while, and I’m pretty satisfied with that idea. Thanks for indulging me.

Commentary


Josue Salazar » 3530 days ago #

Good stuff. I’m glad pink is still present. :)

Aaron Alexander » 3530 days ago #

The simplicity is the most appealing. Great job! I’m glad you kept some pink as well.

Nathan Smith » 3530 days ago #

Hotness. I especially like the semantics: id=“tortilla” and id=“tostada”. Nice. :)

Josh Bryant » 3530 days ago #

Jared, the new design looks fantastic, I love it.

One small note is that some areas on the site you have a slight color mismatch between what you’ve created in a graphics program and what you’ve defined through CSS. Most likely its simply a color-profile mismatch in Photoshop, i.e., try using Monitor RGB as your color profile when trying to match hex values.

I’ve uploaded an example where you can see it:

Image

Jared » 3530 days ago #

@Josue & Aaron – Thanks!

@Nathan – I {heart} code humor. :)

@Josh – Thanks! I emailed you as a follow-up to that issue.

Mitch » 3530 days ago #

Do love the new design. But I miss the robot. Definitely.

Bart-Jan » 3530 days ago #

Looking good! Love the simple, classy look. And the logo looks great!

matthew » 3530 days ago #

Very nice classy, nay classic design.

Jan » 3530 days ago #

Boy! That’s a great one. I like the classy look!

Jason Beaird » 3530 days ago #

You do realize that you have to get a wax seal ordered so you can gussy up some Designologist & Music Snob business cards…before SXSW.

Erik Sagen » 3530 days ago #

You totally stole my “smooshed” wax insignia/seal aesthetic, thanks. Back to the drawing board I suppose! :) No, not really.. okay, maybe.

Looks nice man. It’s clean, loving the typography and the pink works, it’s fancy!

Your about page scares me though.

Jared Christensen » 3530 days ago #

Jason, don’t think I haven’t seriously considered it. Don’t think I have enough time, though. :(

Matt Donovan » 3530 days ago #

I loves it. Very classy and grownup-like.

Abel Rios » 3530 days ago #

Very nice, man. First the beard, now this. I think you’re getting much ‘older’. :D

Jeff Croft » 3530 days ago #

Well-done, Jared! Looks great!

Joshua Lane » 3530 days ago #

Looks great Jared! I’m digging all the recent redesigns, with their really nice monochromatic feel and a little extra color (pink in your case) to make things pop.

patricia » 3529 days ago #

Everything looks great! I like the preservation of the pink.

Dave Jeffery » 3529 days ago #

Nice & Simple, I like it. The subtle glow/shadow on the navigation text is a lovely touch.

Mike Stickel » 3528 days ago #

Looks very nice (aside from this here comment form, but you’re probably working on that later, right?).

I fear I have to call you out though. You say, “no comment count indicators, no cruft” but on the home page you have your handy dandy feedburner stat counter. tsk, tsk. ;-)

Brad Dielman » 3528 days ago #

As Mitch said above, the robot will be missed. That said, the image of you as Abe Lincoln more than makes up for it.

Great job on the redesign, Jared.

Viking KARWUR » 3527 days ago #

Cool…

T.Scott Stromberg » 3526 days ago #

Excellent new site design. It’s looking good on my Wii browser, too.

Blair Millen » 3522 days ago #

Great job. I love the seal :-)

Jared » 3522 days ago #

@Stickel – Busted! My ego couldn’t say goodbye to that counter.

Jim Jeffers » 3522 days ago #

Hey this is GREAT! I really like the color scheme and the choice of font. Very good layout. There are a couple of new-design-just-implemented bugs I’ve noticed. I’m in Safari to put things into context:

1. The search field button isn’t loading for me.
2. The labels for the fields here in the comment section are jumbling up making things a little funky.

Otherwise things look solid! Nice work :)

Markus Langenfeld » 3515 days ago #

Hah, breakfast club soundtrack.

*sings* Don’t you, Forget about me… NO NO NO NOOOOO *sings*

I’m liking the new design, super clean and un-complicated. It’s a good change but I will sorely miss Skippy *cries*

And yes, I still read your blog even though I haven’t IMed you in ages. Some of us still miss you around DIC. It’s a fact.

Nice Work.

Natalie Jost » 3500 days ago #

mmm… yummy. and TXP too. ah, the good ol’ days.

This is not a “theme.”

Oh darn, I was gonna ask. :P

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