My Home Page, 3rd revision.
Although it may not look terribly different than the previous version, I have spend many a nerve-wracking hour (often into the wee hours of the morning) to get the result you are viewing. After recently conferencing with Professor Bill Wolff, I was reassured that it was possible to get an image to stretch across the width of the screen without getting into alchemic coding. Worth mentioning, it was actually after finalizing and uploading my design concept sketch that I happened to come across some websites featuring images as the main area of focus. As they say, an image is worth a thousand words, and the images in the websites seemed to ‘show’ the user’s brand identity more than ‘tell’ it. I felt that they were more visually engaging and that I could identify with them–this was a huge draw because it made me want to stay on the site and check it out. The site that probably best exemplifies this, Housing Works.org.
In my 2nd revision, I used an image of myself, a dramatic, mysterious ‘author photo.’ Why? Because, people like to look at people. We are emotional creatures and we seek out connections. We are visually oriented. I learned this in my Pub Layout course back in undergrad. However, in this version, I decided to showcase a snippet of my work. The image is whimsical yet there is a deliberateness about it, a subtle juxtaposition. The art that is pictured was created for Childhood Calliope, a narrative project for my graduate course, Visual Rhetorical and Multimodal Composition with Professor Bill Wolff. (You can view Childhood Calliope on Issuu.com.) My intent was in changing the Home page image was to capture something of the ‘organic’ and ‘hand-crafted’–and hopefully reinforce a greater connection of my persona as a creator.
Additionally, it was important to me to have a very seamless aesthetic. The overall appearance required the images to visually ‘flow’ into one another; essentially the objective being to eliminate any feeling of disjointed fragmentation and emphasize connectedness. So, to this end, the navigation bar and the header image needed to resonate with each other in terms of width. In terms of coding, it was very difficult to achieve this and much trial and error, research, and then more trial and error. I was able to correct the coding for the navigation bar first, but the image was still not long enough. There was about a 1.5″ of black, gaping space on the right. Oh, how maddening! To be so close, yet no cigar. Finally, after more tweaking I was able to get the image to match up with the navigation bar.
The real test of usability and the site’s responsiveness was trying it out on my iPhone. The Home page and the Resume page worked fine, however I had to re-work the code on the Professional Statement page, as the text was too big and wouldn’t fit onto the screen.
Finally. it was onto validate the site’s HTML and CSS. I tried to make some of the corrections as was advised, however this only served to mess the site up. Perfecting the code to pass validation is something that I’ll be continuing to work on, as several other errors came up and I am not sure what the solution is at the moment. I am hesitant to fix the code, because the site is *finally* displaying so beautifully, yet getting the site to pass validation is something that has to be done to ensure that my final project is within W3C standards.
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Inside Rowan University's Art Department