Brilliant Design

The Value of Your Site’s First Impression

By | User Interface | 14 Comments

Throughout the history of this blog, I’ve often emphasized that the design of a blog or website is one of the most important factor in drawing in potential readers. People tend to be drawn in or turned away by their first impressions of a website. Let me share with you a brief quote from a recent article that makes this point: The problem is that every visitor that hits a less-than-amazing blog ends up leaving…

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35 Examples of Beautiful HDR Photography

By | Design Inspiration | 22 Comments

A picture is worth a thousand words. Color is one of the most basic elements of design. As it is manipulated in different ways, it can help an artist or photographer to tell a story, express emotion, or convey those thousand words in unique ways. The beautiful HDR photography found in this post provides examples of this principle in action. HDR, or high dynamic range, photography is a style of image processing that allows a…

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Dive into the Future of Web Development

By | Web Design & Development | 29 Comments

HTML5: Up and Running is appropriately subtitled, Dive into the Future of Web Development. It allows readers the opportunity to jump head-first into the world of design by drawing a historical picture demonstrating how the web has evolved into what we currently experience while at the same time exploring in vivid detail the newest features being rolled out by the development community today. Perhaps the greatest strength of this book is its ideal blend of…

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Animating The Life Into Our Online Experience

By | User Interface | 19 Comments

As some of you have hopefully noticed, I’ve been working on adding some animations to Site Sketch 101 when some of the navigation links are clicked to browse the site.  If you haven’t noticed them yet, simply click the home link at the top of this page. I’d love to hear your feedback in the comments below. Do you like it, love it, or hate it? What do you think would be a neat animation to…

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Featured Theme: Paradox by Rocket Themes

By | User Interface, WordPress Tips & Tricks | 6 Comments

A few short days ago, as I was diligently searching for a template to use for a website I was developing, I stumbled across the Paradox Theme from Rocket Themes. I was so impressed that I immediately decided to both purchase it for myself and to spend a few moments sharing it with you here. As you can see, Paradox is a very creatively designed theme. It features 8 preset styles so that it can…

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30 Inspirational Photos for the Fourth of July

By | Design Inspiration | 71 Comments

As a soldier in the United States Army, I find that the fourth of July carries an incredibly special meaning. The fourth of July is the celebration of our nation’s freedom and strength. We look back at the document signed 234 years ago and as we do we have to look over the battles that have been fought, the men who’ve stood for truth, the farmers who planted their fields, and the soldiers who went…

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Creating a Dynamic HTML5 Cache Manifest

By | Web Design & Development | 19 Comments

If you’ve spent much time digging into the newest features being released in HTML5, then you’ve probably already played around with the Cache Manifest. It’s certainly a powerful tool for caching your site’s content in the browser of your users so that they can browse from page to page with lightning speed. For a good introduction to the cache manifest, be sure to check out Mark Pilgrim’s Dive Into HTML5: Let’s Take This Offline. In…

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The 35 Most Amazing & Beautiful Websites in 2011

By | Design Inspiration | 168 Comments

Today I present you with some amazing looking websites. In the ongoing struggle to build powerful online brands, people are becoming more creative every day. New artistic styles are emerging and web design as we know it is being transformed. The beautiful websites listed in this post are the perfect example of this concept. Take your time as you browse through these websites. Notice the structure, the creativity, and the outside-the-box approach to their designs….

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The Fine Art of Leading Your Readers

By | User Interface | 16 Comments

Some people start their blog in order to pursue some dream of becoming rich from the internet. Others write each article as a way of achieving a certain level of recognition. Some do it just to connect with other like-minded people. In a recent article entitled 10 Killer Ways to Boost Your Site’s Usability, I introduced you to the idea of enhancing your readers interactions by simplifying their experience at your website. As you work…

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Are You In Control of Your User Interface?

By | User Interface | 35 Comments

User Interface, or UI, refers to the part of a software application that a user sees and interacts with. On a website or blog, the UI includes the various elements of the theme that allow the user to interact with the site. These elements can be the navigation menus, the comments section, the layout of the articles and much more. Every aspect of the site that allows a user to browse the site, leave comments…

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