The Basics of Good Design
Good design always starts with a clear focus. Ideally, that focus can be summarized in a short paragraph. For example, on this site, I wanted to have a retro look and feel throughout the site, with an appeal to older, classical colors, fonts and photos throughout.
What do you want your site look - your images, your font selections,  your images, your colors – to communicate to your visitors? On this site, the images I chose needed to be visually appealing and were related to the matter being discussed. For example, the image chosen for Search Engine Optimization category was a pair of binoculars. While not directly related to SEO, it does relate to searching, and thus the creative tie-in to the subject matter.

The retro look was also chosen because there is an appeal to how we perceive things were done “back then”, when there was a pride in craftsmanship and quality which this look appeals to and evokes.

At Poiema Design, we are committed to these qualities and want our site visitors and prospective clients to think of us and the quality of work we will do for them. In fact, a part of our name, Poiema, appeals to this.

Poiema is an ancient Greek word that refers to workmanship that has an artistic quality to it. It is the difference between a common clay jar and a porcelain vase. They may share the same common ingredients, but the final products are very distinctly and uniquely different from one another.

On your site, you must find a way to communicate what makes you distinctive and unique, what will motivate a site visitor to choose to contact you about your products and/or services. Visitors to your site will form an opinion about your firm or organization within seconds of viewing your site. Does your site encourage them or discourage them in this area?

“Good design is obvious. Great design is transparent.”
–Joe Sparano

When designing your website, not every image needs to be something related specifically to what you do. For example, there is a reason advertisers show two glasses of wine on a table at sunset rather than the wine in a parking lot. While the wine itself would not be different, how you and I perceive the wine is vastly different, isn’t it? Or think of how a real estate site displays a home. THe best sites will strive to have pictures on a sunny day for exterior shots and lots of light and no clutter for interior shots.

Why?

How you and I perceive something is directly linked to whether we value it or not.

Legacy Builders of Hope
Jim Plays Music
Rockin Star Brenham
Terra Associates

Looking at the images above of sites we have designed, you will note very different looks for the sites.

For Legacy Builders of Hope, a ministry to men, we wanted an image that would engage and be masculine in appeal. We chose a mountain image as this ministry challenges men to face the “mountains” in their lives and how they can master them in the community of other men on the same journey.

Rockin Star Ranch is a luxury bed and breakfast located in Brenham, TX, which also specializes in weddings and corporate events. The owners created a distinctive rustic appearance through the use of stone and wood, as well as elegant antique furnishings for the various cabins, cottages and ballroom.

For Jim Plays Music, we wanted site visitors to immediately know the genre of music Jim Connor’s performs, both via keyboard as well as vocal. Thus the reference to The Great American Songbook on the homepage slider as well as an image showing Frank Sinatra, the quintessential crooner. Additionally, Jim loves performing for seniors in numerous retirement communities and this, too, is reflected throughout the site.

Terra Associates is a leading civil engineering firm headquartered in Houston, TX. In designing the site, we wanted to showcase many of the more recent projects they have done in the various areas of their expertise. Working closely with them, we were able to get a number of extremely high quality photos to showcase the quality and scope of the work they do.

When designing your site, look for images that can help to quickly convey the essence of what makes your company or organization unique.

Want to know more about the work we do and how we can benefit your company?
Get in touch with us!

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