The Modern Website: Typography, Texture and Trouble-Free Design

Robin Brun, Senior Designer

Predicting trends can be tricky, but I feel pretty secure forecasting that current website design is moving towards a true bonding of the best of print and Web. Web design has undergone a quick evolution to become a tool that brings superior aesthetic design and functionality together and in the process, has brought a lot of the elements of great print design along for the ride. The following are current trends that help websites make the transformation to fresh and contemporary. Putting one or all of them into practice can make your website easier to navigate and more pleasant to the eyes.

Typography

The use of creative typography used to be rare in website design, but it is now becoming much more common to see websites based on a grid layout with simple typographic treatments and an interesting background. Designing for a computer screen has its own challenges including the flexibility of a Web page, which must conform to different computer platforms and screen sizes, but quality typography is as important on a website as it is anywhere else. Whether on a piece of paper or a computer screen, typography should always be pleasing to the eye and easy to read.

Texture

Another aspect of well-designed modern websites is the use of textured backgrounds. Textures and hand-drawn images are becoming more prevalent due to the need to stand out amongst the countless websites out there. A reason for this is because of the versatility it affords. You can use textures in a variety of ways going from subtle to extreme, or to emphasize other elements of site design like typography (see previous section). Texture can add dimension to almost any style of design, and is easy to implement with a program like Photoshop.

Trouble-Free Design

There has been a recent shift from the cluttered design of websites to simpler and more streamlined alternatives. The need for speed among today’s Web surfers combined with the need for an instant connection mean that intro graphics are too cumbersome and slow. The last thing that you want to do is annoy your audience, so many are deciding to move away from intro graphics to make their websites more user-friendly.

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