My Final Reflections

Emotional and Responsive Design Techniques

My main goal regarding emotional and responsive design was to stick as best as I could with my original idea that I had from the beginning, which ended up being somewhat hard to do. Ideas are constantly changing, especially ones that I come up with myself. I really enjoyed making my design persona because I felt like I was getting the chance to express myself and really put all of my ideas that I have been having into my work. I took inspiration in another student's website. I looked towards Madison Auer for inspiration through her website, and through speaking with her and showing her my website as it progressed. Her cleanliness and simplicity in design is what I personally think is most aesthically pleasing to an audience, and I wanted my website to give off similar minimalistic vibes. I also enjoyed how she always makes each page seem so welcoming with her little "Hellos" and just little phrases that she had come up with sprinkled throughout to give it that authentic feeling.

My website has changed significantly since my first draft that I came up with. I had this mindset that everything had to be completely plain, and I thought I could have no type of pattern or any bright colors in my design or it would no longer be minimal. But I eventually realized that my original thoughts were kind of boring, so I changed some things around I added in color and a background pattern to try and make it a little more fun. I tried to make the layouts of each page the same way that I designed my grids, but my pages kind of ended up being whatever worked best for me at the time each one was made.

When coding, I really foocused on creating a design layout that was interactive with my audience and would keep them engaged. The navigation bar, the instagram pop-up that I created using a Snap Widget, the link to my blog, were all things that were incorporated that are interactive features of my website. The resposiveness of my website I believes is a good start.

To make my website more emotional, I would like to add tiny personal touches scattered throughout my website. Things like customized logos, little drawings, little notes from me, just things that would make my website seem more personable. To make it more responsive, I would like to add in things that make it more interactive such as pop-ups to different sites and social media platforms that I have, possibly some interactive photos, just anything that will get my audience to interact with my site more.

My Progress

At the end of the midterm period, I had a little bit more confidence in my work, but I still felt that I was getting lost in all the CSS and HTML. Knowing that my next task was to code a whole entire website from scatch was not something that I was looking forward to. I was not looking forward to it because I did not believe in myself and my capabilities to create something this huge. I was struggling a lot with things like divs, headers, sections, etc. and how they all connected together through html and css. Once i did figure these things out though, I then could not figure out how to fix basic things like the size of the font, or the padding on a photo, and it was really frustrating.

It is now the end of web design, and my website has reached a point that I never thought I would be able to achieve. From the midterm on, I noticed substantial progress in my coding abilities. I no longer become isntantly hopeless as soon as I can't figure something out. Now having the basic knowledge of html and css has really helped me to design each page and teach myself new code that we may have not gone over in class.

I feel like for my second project a have had a lot of successes, ranging from big to small. My small successes are just things like figuring out how to correctly use divs and classes, how to change the background colors for different setions, how to work with headings, etc. Some of my big successes were learning how to create my navigation bars, add in videos, add in a background photo, and just customizing the pages themselves. Creating each page was individually was defintely a big success for me, because each page has its own uinque style to it, so creating all of these different pages was a challenge that I think I was able to conquer.

If I had more time to add to my website and change things around, the first thing that I would want to fix is the navigation bar. I want to figure out how to get it to float in the center, instead of having it be in a different spot going from page to page. I would also have put more time and effort into the aesthetics of my page. Since I had such limited time I was more focused on making sure that everything I needed was put into each page. Lastly, I would definitely fix how my pages look in tablet and mobile phone sizes. I was so focused on making the computer screen look good that I did not put as much time into the other screen sizes. In terms of my comfort level right now, I would have to say I feel pretty okay with coding. I have been able to figure things out on my own and even teach some code to some of my classmates who have needed help, so I think I am fairly confident with the skills that I currently have. I definitely can expand on them, and that is something that I would like to do in the future.

My advice to future web design students would be to NEVER slack on your work! The more behinf you get on coding, the harder it is to catch up and figure out things that most likely would have been fairly simple if it would have just been attempted when assigned. Web design seems a lot more scary than it is, so there is no need to be intimidated. If you do the work, ask questions frequently, utilize open coding, and always do your homework, this class stays enjoyable.