Reviewing a Website’s Design Choices and Reflecting on My Own
One of the only websites I visit frequently for fun is The Peak’s site. For those of you who think print is dead (or that newspapers are “boring” @that one guy in class), The Peak is SFU’s student-run newspaper. Students can submit their work to the paper and get it published for money. It’s pretty sweet.
I’ve noticed that their front page has a very detailed setup without looking cluttered. This might be because, unlike other news websites, its very photo-heavy, rather than text-heavy. I get a haeadache if I stare at CBC News’ crazy home page too long.
On the other hand, The Peak’s logo at the top is really small compared to the huge photos, making it seem a bit lost. I also feel that some of the photos weren’t meant for the display boxes they’re in. I often notice they’re cut off near-completely or cropped weirdly. I do like the use of negative space, though, and how simple the menus are.
Scrolling down, I’m almost always surprised by the digital version of the paper issue they have on the stands that week on the right. Why is it so hidden? You’d think it would be one of the site’s more important aspects. Other than that, I like how they’ve laid everything out to the very bottom the site. Everything is there, and the excess is only sometimes a little overwhelming.
The posts themselves have an appealing look, with big, legible font accompanying every article. There are often many helpful hyperlinks, and some of the articles are web-exclusive that you wouldn’t find in the papers on campus. Unfortunately, some of the website’s pages are outdated. I guess a problem with having too many categories and pages is losing track of them. Overall, I think their website design is clean and easy to navigate, which is perfect for a newspaper.
Using the feedback I got from the peer review and the tips we got from our design lecture, I made some modifications to my site. I made my About section a bit more about me and started adding captions to some of my photos to give them more depth. I’ve also been playing with fonts to see which will work best on my website, though it’s always overwhelming to scroll through the options. I’m also working on the slider on my homepage since at the moment, it does not work well for mobile phones.