Author Topic: Mune Studios  (Read 5404 times)

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Munerift

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« on: January 20, 2007, 07:55:59 am »
Well, I took the plunge the other day and filled out a Master Business Application through my state (WASHINGTON)... Mune Studios is officially going to be mine! =)

I'm excited, but yet I'm nervous as well. So many new things, other things to worry about, making sure I do everything I need to and such.

Can you guys take the time to look at my portfolio of web design & tell me what you think really quick?

It's here: http://munerift.xepher.net/wpportfolio.html
...and it will require Flash 9 player to view.

Next project I'm going to tackle after I'm done being sick and have some extra money is to register my own domain name... and once I start getting projects and payment sit down & go through everything I've got... and give to where I owe. (such as helping xepher.net..!)

Anyone have any general ideas or advise?

Thanks guys! =0)
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fesworks

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« Reply #1 on: January 20, 2007, 09:11:04 pm »
Well good luck for all of that!

You can pick up domain names pretty cheap these days... Yahoo Domains, GoDaddy... like $8-$10 per year.

I'll check out your link a bit later (I'm inbetween errands right now).

Xepher

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« Reply #2 on: January 21, 2007, 12:04:16 am »
Please, PLEASE don't take offense, but while it doesn't look bad, per se, it doesn't look any better than mine either, and I'm a long way from trying for professional work as a web designer. Mostly it looks empty, and the one thing that stands out as pretty decent is your own site. That is, of course, fine for an art site, but if you're targeting businesses you probably need a lot more business-style designs.

Now, those things said, that doesn't mean you can't make it work for you already. A lot of local businesses aren't too particular about their site's design. They just need it, and need it to work, without paying through the nose. With any luck, you can get a few contracts from such places, and that can help you build up a portfolio.

I'd also suggest that flash, while sometimes a useful tool, shouldn't be used except where needed. For a slideshow like your portfolio, is there anything wrong with just regular links to pages with a regular image in them? I know it might seem like it doesn't matter, but consider for a moment what happens if a potential client sees your site. Businesses usually have to get any expenditure approved by multiple people. An employee says "we need a website" so she looks for designers and comes across you. She likes something in your portfolio there, and wants to show the boss, so she tries to email him one of those portfolio pieces. But she can't, because it's flash. She right clicks to save an image, but that doesn't work with flash. Of course, she probably emails the boss anyway, and puts a link to your page in the email. But they're not the most tech savvy company (I mean, they don't even have a website and it's 2007) and his computer doesn't have flash 9 installed, so he gets a pop up telling him it's needed, to follow this and that... etc. He doesn't have time for this, he's the boss, so he skips you and goes right to the next suggestion.

Yes, I know, rather contrived on my part, but that's just one possible scenario. When I worked for Northwest Data, I was continually amazed at some of the things people did or didn't do when they just barely understood the technology they were using. For the stuff I do here on Xepher.net, I generally do nothing to cater to the technologically ignorant, but if you're running a business, it's imperative that you not only think "what looks good?" but also "how can people screw this up?" On that note, generally the simpler something is, the less ways there are to screw it up. Know flash 9, make shiny stuff with it, have links to sites you've made using it for sure. But make sure that if, for some reason that doesn't work (did you know my adblocking software blocks your flash portfolio?) that it won't ruin your whole presentation.

Oh, and as Fes said, domain names are super cheap. If you get one, just let me know you want it pointed at your account.

Good luck!

fesworks

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« Reply #3 on: January 21, 2007, 02:33:41 am »
I just have mine redirected right through Yahoo. But I don't use the masking option because I like the control over my base URL if I need to.

Also, Mune, as far as presentation... I don't particularly see why flash is needed in this case. (points to Xepher's reasons, so I won't say anything else).

Gwyn

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« Reply #4 on: January 21, 2007, 04:01:08 am »
yeah flash is a big nono for web designers as a whole. The only reason you use it is if a client requests it.


You should also do the portfolio page as thumbnails and include a link to the site, so people can check out how it's organized and how it works.

The layout is also pretty dark, you might want to try something sleeker and more professional looking, I know it's hard to be creative and be businessy, but you'll have to sacrifice some of one for the other.
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Munerift

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« Reply #5 on: January 21, 2007, 04:26:00 am »
Xepher: Thank you for the feedback, I hadn't thought of it that way before (too much work to see my stuff=a no-go; you're absolutely right!) It makes sense. If I was them, (though I know how to do all that stuff) I'd probably simply not jump through all of those hoops myself. No offense taken in the least... I am very thankful for your honesty and input.

Fez: Thank you for the supporting information. (& I haven't forgotten about your strips for your comic either..!)

Gwyn: I wanted to do the "click & see the site" thing however I was concerned about people simply right-clicking to copy the source & then change to what they needed... a place to learn how to code for them but then I've lost potential customers who couldn't get the stuff otherwise. I'm not concerned about the little guy, but rather the generic store that's simply skimping to get a site if you know what I mean?

EVERYONE: Thank you for your input, it's really helped me. Back to the drawing board with me..! =)
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Gwyn

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« Reply #6 on: January 21, 2007, 04:34:01 am »
If they just wanted a site from copying your source they could just find a free layout on the internets somewhere. lots of places offer free CSS templates. So if they knew their way around enough and could get something simple for free and it was good enough for them, you wouldn't get them as a customer anyway.

You should sketch out some potential layouts before you start coding/making graphics. That way you'll have an easier time changing your mind on it, you wont be attached from all the work.
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griever

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« Reply #7 on: January 21, 2007, 07:00:24 am »
Aside from all the other comments, I just have one thing to add...maybe, when you show the thumbnails, a description/reason for the design?  I've seen it used on other portfolio sites.  Sometimes, I think a design is not so good, but after reading why, things make more sense.  This is particularly if you don't want to give a link to the real site.  (if this makes any sense)
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Databits

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« Reply #8 on: January 23, 2007, 08:25:28 am »
Actually you'd be surprised how little flash is actually used in the professional web development area. It's mostly to do with things dealing with the best use of screen real-estate. Which means you want to make the best use of as much of the screen as possible, without making it hard to navigate, yet having as little whitespace as possible. Whether it be filled with images, text, a combination, or some other portion of the design.

This is simply speaking from professional experience, as I make a living off of this stuff. :P

The question really is, are you going to be a designer or a coder? I've seen people make beautiful site designs... which when actually applied don't really work. For goodness sake remember that inline CSS is not a bad thing. On one of my projects I'm on right now, the artist seems to think that ALL CSS must be in the .css file, which simply isn't true. So then we have pointless things like:

.left_intent_1 {
  margin-left: 1em;
}

Only used on a couple pages here and there though, which is very poor code. Just something to keep in mind (and yes that's an example of what the guy actually does, no joking, I've beat my head against my desk over it a few times).
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