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  1. #1
    $books++ == true matsko's Avatar
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    Photoshop Design Layout Book Recommendations

    Hey guys.

    I've been coding websites (apart from designing) for about six years now ... so I'm very comfortable with just about everything other than design. You see I'm not a graphic designer and I don't have a natural talent for UI design.

    The problem is that I still need to learn how to design a site when I don't have access to a designer. Now I find using photoshop to prototype a design is very useful and rewarding (since you are not binded to the lack of CSS3 effects).

    Does anyone have any great book recommendations for Photoshop website design profiling? I find that if I constantly prototype designs using photoshop then it may become easier in the end to develop them afterwards.
    I can't believe I ate the whole thing

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    SitePoint Evangelist WebMachine's Avatar
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    Maybe that's something for Sitepoint to add to their publishing to-do list. I was looking for another book to buy from them, and the topic you are suggesting is one I would snatch up in a minute (especially if it was project based). By the way, I found a good tutorial on it at css-tricks (I love their video tutorials!). http://css-tricks.com/video-screenca...toshop-mockup/

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    I don't know if this will help or not, but this site has some excellent tutorials on how to use Photoshop to build some components of a web site, or the beginnings of a web site: http://sixrevisions.com/photoshop/25...web-designers/

    You might also try picking a few books on learning how to do graphic design. Most of principles used for making web sites come from knowledge gained in learning graphic design. Good luck!

  4. #4
    $books++ == true matsko's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by deseynerseye View Post
    You might also try picking a few books on learning how to do graphic design. Most of principles used for making web sites come from knowledge gained in learning graphic design. Good luck!
    Any book ideas?
    I can't believe I ate the whole thing

  5. #5
    Follow: @AlexDawsonUK silver trophybronze trophy AlexDawson's Avatar
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    matsko, I don't know if this will help you (you will probably want to check the book before you purchase) but if you want to understand the concepts of design and how layout should be applied (regardless of editor) you may want to check out a book dealing in design conventions or usability, one book which comes to mind in terms of the stuff it covers (lots of examples of what you can add to a site - therefore you could pretty much pick the elements and add them into the wireframe) would be a book called "The Design of Sites", it's a huge big red book the size of a phonebook but its a great resource for user interface ideas.

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    Hey...I don't know any books but learning from other people are usually useful.
    Have you tried websites like good-tutorials.com?

    Cheers!

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by matsko View Post
    Hey guys.

    I've been coding websites (apart from designing) for about six years now ... so I'm very comfortable with just about everything other than design. You see I'm not a graphic designer and I don't have a natural talent for UI design.

    The problem is that I still need to learn how to design a site when I don't have access to a designer. Now I find using photoshop to prototype a design is very useful and rewarding (since you are not binded to the lack of CSS3 effects).

    Does anyone have any great book recommendations for Photoshop website design profiling? I find that if I constantly prototype designs using photoshop then it may become easier in the end to develop them afterwards.
    The thing is, I am a graphic designer and I did a one year foundation, and a three year degree to learn the basics. Plus xx years in industry, learning from people I worked for. And that was starting from a point at which I was good at drawing and already had a natural eye for composition. So it's not really going to be possible to pick all that up from a tutorial.

    I personally would not read books on website design, but graphic design basics in general. Good layout and typography are applicable whether you're designing a book, a poster or a website. The same ideas still hold. Keep it as simple as possible, avoid too many effects, don't use too many typefaces etc etc. So have a look at basic graphic design and layout theory rather than tutorials. A tutorial only teaches you how to do that one thing. If you know the underlying theory, you can do it all, with practice.

    Having said all that, it's better to get someone with the relevant skills to do the job. I don't code websites. I don't know how to do it, I have no flair for it and I have no wish to do it. I'd sooner spend my time doing what I'm good at. It's more cost effective. If I need it doing, I get someone like you to do it.

    I know that's not necessarily the answer you wanted, but its my opinion. Hope it vaguely helps.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spark_Creative View Post
    The thing is, I am a graphic designer and I did a one year foundation, and a three year degree to learn the basics. Plus xx years in industry, learning from people I worked for. And that was starting from a point at which I was good at drawing and already had a natural eye for composition. So it's not really going to be possible to pick all that up from a tutorial.

    I personally would not read books on website design, but graphic design basics in general. Good layout and typography are applicable whether you're designing a book, a poster or a website. The same ideas still hold. Keep it as simple as possible, avoid too many effects, don't use too many typefaces etc etc. So have a look at basic graphic design and layout theory rather than tutorials. A tutorial only teaches you how to do that one thing. If you know the underlying theory, you can do it all, with practice.

    Having said all that, it's better to get someone with the relevant skills to do the job. I don't code websites. I don't know how to do it, I have no flair for it and I have no wish to do it. I'd sooner spend my time doing what I'm good at. It's more cost effective. If I need it doing, I get someone like you to do it.

    I know that's not necessarily the answer you wanted, but its my opinion. Hope it vaguely helps.
    ==

    I agree... tutorials can be referred to when needing to know how to do a specific effect or using a tool in Photoshop.

    A good way is to keep on designing layouts which will improve your skills.
    - Design a layout, look at it and see what you can do better.
    - Re-design and see if you covered all the elements.
    - Etc

    - One of the other ways, /Which I am not sure if people would agree on is/ to look at your favorites websites and try to design them. The closer you get to the original design, the better you get.

    (As you know, it should be for your education and training purpose online as Coping and publishing designs are .... )

    Cheers!

  9. #9
    Follow: @AlexDawsonUK silver trophybronze trophy AlexDawson's Avatar
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    One useful book for anyone getting into design itself (rather than focusing on layout conventions) is the Universal Principles of Design, it's aimed directly at web designers while focusing on the psychology of design and the elements which any graphic artist or designer should take into consideration.

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    you can try " sexy web design " as well.
    You can get this book from sitepoint.

    There are some great tips in it.

    Cheers!

  11. #11
    $books++ == true matsko's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rpas View Post
    you can try " sexy web design " as well.
    You can get this book from sitepoint.

    There are some great tips in it.

    Cheers!
    I already got that book. It was ok, but it didn't really go into and detail about why the applied designs work so well.
    I can't believe I ate the whole thing

  12. #12
    Follow: @AlexDawsonUK silver trophybronze trophy AlexDawson's Avatar
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    matsko, if you want a book which details why certain design decisions are effective you are looking at the wrong category of book. Most design books follow principles which while rooted in psychology and research do not actually offer a "web based" reasoning behind their applied preferences (though there are some exceptions as per my posts above). If you want details about what makes good designs and by association why the designs work well you should purchase a book on Usability.

    Don't Make Me Think! (Steve Krug) and Designing Web Usability (Jakob Nielsen) are two excellent titles on the subject.


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