Author Archives: Polana Fowdrey

Evaluation of Project – Illumina


For this project we worked in groups.

I was working with Katie Waldock, Clare Haldon and Mark Smith.

As with any team, we each had individual strengths and we tried to utilise this diversity.

My skills lie mainly in design, project conception and testing and so my input fell mainly in the inception stages. as we designed the layout and content of the page, and at the end, when the site required rigorous testing in multiple browsers. I worked in the meantime creating some of the animated Gifs.

Mark is a great organiser and pulled together the folder required for the brief, locating all the information required and setting it out coherently. He also produced some of the graphics, the logo and the About page.

Clare’s expertise lies in Illustrator and so we turned to her for the page’s main graphical layout. She produced the larger vector graphics which formed the basis of our page.

Katie is the coder of the group, having worked in programming previously. She coded the website using Dreamweaver, pulling together everything created by the group.

Our initial research led us to look at various sites. One which stood out was Ben the Bodyguard.

We were impressed by the way the figure appears to walk down the street as the page is scrolled. In face it remains in the middle of the screen, but the impression was one we wanted to use in our website.

After some discussion, we decided to us a tall building, with a glass elevator on the front. We would place a figure in the elevator and as the page scrolled down, the lift would appear to descend the building.

Clare got to work making the building and lift in Illustrator.

building-illuminaOur project required us to produce some animation, so we decided to decorate the building with neon signs, which Mark and I made in Photoshop, animating them into gifs. I produced the clickable signs (the ones which let to other pages)





and Mark made the static signs.






In the meantime, Katie produced a couple of animations for two of the windows:



and Clare built a taxi and helicopter for a “spy-getaway” animation we wanted to make to start and finish the page experience.



Mark put a folder together of all the administrative work we needed and made an illuminated sign for the page.



Gradually, the pieces were coming together and it was mainly down to Katie to write the code and bring it all together.

Owing to illness and work commitments, my input througouht the project was minimal, so I tried to redeem myself a little by testing the site in several browser and offering constructive feedback.

With browsers differing so much in the way they display pages, we found it very difficult to present a website that worked in every one.

The best we found was Safari, which seemed to have fewer glitches than the others. firefox and chrome both had display problems, rendering the whole image too large and off to the right of the page.

The secondary pages, which Mark put together, mostly displayed well, so it was the large images and animations which were causing problems in the web browsers.

The final piece can be seen here.




Employment Opportunities in Web Design


Several employment agencies exist aiming to find work for web designers. One such in my local area is Wired.

Here is a typical list of jobs advertised on their site:


Design and Creative Jobs in Brighton and Hove, and across Sussex

Design and Creative jobs in Sussex including graphic design and print within the Digital, Media and Technology sector – ranging from Graduate to senior level positions.

Bolder Creative
Motion Graphics Interns
Bolder Creative, Brighton and Hove. Bolder Creative are a Brighton based motion graphics & advertising studio who specialise in producing commercials, promos & broadcast content within the music & entertainment …
Stampa Print & Design
Print Assistant
Stampa Print & Design, Brighton and Hove. We currently have a permanent full time, front of house vacancy for an experienced print assistant, working alongside the print manager in our busy shop. Duties include: – …
Friday Media Group
Product Marketing Executive
Friday Media Group, Near Brighton (Sayers Common). The Opportunity: Using your initiative, you will be responsible for driving the creative marketing of some market leading classifieds and recruitment websites, as well as being …
Direct marketing fundraising copywriter (freelance
ChangeStar, Lewes. We are a busy and growing agency, and are seeking a talented and experienced direct marketing fundraising copywriter. You will be producing copy for a range of clients and media …
Michael Bell Brand Communications
Account Executive/Office Manager
Michael Bell Brand Communications, Lewes. Closing date: 12/06/2013 We are Michael Bell Ltd, an integrated marketing communications agency based in Lewes. We have a portfolio of global brands for whom we deliver award …
Mid/Senior Web Designer
RSA, Horsham. TOGETHER WE CAN CONQUER THE WORLD Global domination is something achievable with online insurance sales. Over £1 Billion policies are bought online from websites such as MORE …
Chief Operating Officer
ChangeStar, Lewes. The Chief Operational Officer is an important new role at ChangeStar. The postholder will plan, build and run the business development and operational sides of the organisation, …
Oban Multilingual
Enterprise PHP/JavaScript Developer
Oban Multilingual, Falmer, Brighton. Job specification – Enterprise PHP/JavaScript Developer Location – Brighton East Sussex Salary – Dependent upon experience We have a need for a motivated and experienced …
Graphic Designer
Rotovision, Brighton & Hove. We currently have a maternity cover vacancy for an enthusiastic experienced graphic designer preferably with book publishing experience. This is a rare and exciting opportunity …
Sprung Studios
Interaction Designer/Artworker
Sprung Studios, Brighton and Hove. We are looking for a highly motivated designer/artworker freelancer to join our very busy team, to help with layout and design concepts of Mobile/TV/Web and App solutions. Suitable …
Trevillion Images
Trevillion Images, Brighton & Hove. Trevillion is currently expanding and this opportunity will give a valuable insight into all aspects of working in a busy, international office. Full on the job training will …
West End Studios
Graphic Designer
West End Studios, Eastbourne. We are currently looking to recruit a middle weight Graphic Designer to join our team. The successful candidate will have a minimum of three years experience working within …
Graduate Digital Media Developer
Spink, Balcombe. This is a graduate opportunity, for an initial 3 month contract, for a talented and creative individual to help design, build and develop digital media channels for the consultancy. …
Eighth Day
Junior front-end developer
Eighth Day, Brighton and Hove. We are looking for an enthusiastic graduate to work on a broad range of projects in our Brighton office. You will be working within a small team, helping create beautifully …
OnlineTraining Ltd.
Web design and graphic artist
OnlineTraining Ltd., Brighton and Hove. Excellent web design and graphic art skills. You will need to demonstrate inventive, creative ability in development of multi-platform graphic animations together with CSS 3 based web design skills
Trustco Media
Junior+Senior Graphic Designer
Trustco Media, Shoreham. This is a great opportunity to become part of the in-house Digital Media team, working across a real range of projects. Your role will include liaising with both the project …
Bright Interactive
Temporary Front End Developer
Bright Interactive, Brighton and Hove. You will support the team with a variety of tasks including changes such as cross-site text updates for static sites, design updates using elements provided, improvements to our …
William Reed Business Media
Magazine/Graphic Designer (12 month fixed term co
William Reed Business Media, Crawley. William Reed Business Media is the market-leading B2B media company in the UK food, drink and hospitality industries. The company employs over 300 employees and is one of the …
Spring Marketing
Artworkers/Graphic Designers
Spring Marketing, Worthing. Spring Marketing are a rapidly growing full service marketing and advertising agency, comprising of a team of highly motivated advertising, marketing, PR and creative design professionals. To …
 As you can see, there are various opportunities available at every level of expertise.


Legal and Ethical Issues in Web Design


Legal and Ethical Issues in Web Design

WAI Guidelines:

The World Wide Web Consortium (W3C)’s Web Accessibility Initiative (WAI) is an effort to improve the accessibility of the World Wide Web (WWW or Web) for people with disabilities. People with disabilities may encounter difficulties when using computers generally, but also on the Web. Since people with disabilities often require non-standard devices and browsers, making websites more accessible also benefits a wide range of user agents and devices, including mobile devices, which have limited resources.



Copyright and the Internet:

Online copyright infringement involves the wrongful copying of something in an online context. In the UK, the law of copyright is set out in the Copyright, Designs and Patents Act 1988. The key issue is usually whether what is taken is a “substantial” copy of the original work, which can be measured in terms of quality, as well as quantity. In order to qualify for copyright protection under UK law, a work (which can include a digital work such as a web page) has to be original and to comprise a degree of labour, skill or judgment.



EU Cookie Law:

The Cookie Law is a new piece of privacy legislation that requires websites to obtain consent from visitors to store or retrieve any information on a computer or any other web connected device, like a smartphone or tablet.


It has been designed to protect online privacy, by making consumers aware of how information about them is collected by websites, and enable them to choose whether or not they want to allow it to take place.


It started as an EU Directive that was adopted by all EU countries on May 26th 2011.  At the same time the UK updated its Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations, which brought the EU Directive it into UK law.


There was a one year grace period in the UK, which ran out in May 2012.


Each EU member state has done or is doing the same thing. Although they all have their own approach and interpretation, the basic requirements of the directive remain the same.



New Copyright Law in the UK

The Enterprise and Regulatory Reform Act was passed by Parliament in April 2013.

Photographs or other creative works can be used without the owners’ explicit permission as long as a “diligent search” has taken place.

For the first time, these “orphan works” – as they are known – can be licensed for commercial or non-commercial use.

However, in order to do so, the company in question would have to prove to an independent body that a “diligent search” to find and approach the copyright holder had taken place without success.

If the body is satisfied there has been a sufficient search, it would then allow the company to pay a license fee to use the material.

This money is then to be held by the independent body, and can be claimed by the rights holder should they come forward at a later date.






Website Production – Needle Exchange


My prototype website, “Needle Exchange” is complete.



My Home Page has links to YouTube videos. I wanted to put the videos on the home page as this is unusual and it creates a lively, dynamic site right from the first landing.

My navigation buttons are at the bottom and I spent a long time making them animate nicely when pressed.

The page also has three blocks at the top, which do not currently link anywhere, but do have the potential to link to other parts of the site, as it grown.

I used cheeky phrases, coupled with cute pastel colouring to provide interest and irony.


Alternative Knitting Resource How To Knit


The next page I created is the pattern page.

I needed to produce an anchor and back to top links, so I was forced to set out the page differently to how I would prefer.

I wanted to make the section boxes on the patterns page link to new pages, each featuring patterns for that section, but this would not provide me with the need for an anchor link and back to top link, so I put everything on the same page, floated the navigation at the bottom of the page (which I do not like) and back to top links at each section.

As a result, the page does not look as I would prefer it, but it does meet the brief set in the project.

patterns1 patterns3 patterns2

At the top. I made a slider showing books. These link to Amazon.



The final page I created is the contact page.

This is a working contact page, which will send straight to my email. I have added an option to attach a file, so that users could submit content for the page.

I realize there are security issues with this, but I have not at this point addressed them.


Submit Alternative Knitting Patterns Comment and Contact


I have added meta tags to the page, describing the content and created a favicon using online software:



There is room to expand the site to include a “forum” and “projects” page, which I will do with the next project.

2012 in review


The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2012 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

600 people reached the top of Mt. Everest in 2012. This blog got about 6,100 views in 2012. If every person who reached the top of Mt. Everest viewed this blog, it would have taken 10 years to get that many views.

Click here to see the complete report.

Website Development


For my latest project, I am creating a website called The Needle Exchange which is a knitting site for the 21st century featuring alternative, quirky and unusual knitting patterns, how-to videos and a forum for users to interact.

So far, all I have done with the design is plan a home page.

Needle Exchange home

My intention at the moment is to have videos on the home page instructing visitors on the basics of knitting, for those who have never done it before. The “How-To Videos” button will open a page which also has several other videos showing more complex techniques.

The “Home” “Forum and “Contact” buttons are self explanatory, whilst the “Patterns” button will link to a page showing sections of content, navigating the visitor to actual free knitting patterns. (Not knitted doilies, more like handcuffs or vampire plushies.)

I have used a simple, crisp layout and straightforward logo/header in order to make navigation easy. The site will feature a wide range of themes in terms of content, so i wanted to create an interface which does not clash with any of this content.

My decision to place the navigation buttons in the footer is unconventional but I feel it will work (I have seen it done successfully elsewhere) as it is clear and obvious. I am making an “alternative” themed site, so some breaking of “rules” is, I believe in order.

Website Evaluation


 Good website:

Hugh Fox:

The reason I find this site to be an example of good design is because of the following:

The site is well laid-out and it is easy to navigate around.

The images are clear and of a good quality. Clicking on an image brings up an enlargement. This is excellent especially on a photographer’s website.

The navigation bar is clear and concise. It is easy to find everything on the site, despite the placement being in the footer (an unusual choice, but not one which causes any difficulty.

All the links work and there is nothing distracting on the site.




Bad Website:

Studio 27:

The reason I find this site a bad example of design is because of the following:

Music plays on every page opened, even after turning off. Comes on again whenever a new page is reached. Music is really annoying, especially this music.

The page is tiny, all the images are tiny and it is all written in Flash, which is now fairly obsolete as it doesn’t run properly on many platforms.

None of the images is really big enough to see and they don’t grow on clicking/ This could have been achieved easily in flash and can be done without as well.

The navigation bar animation in my opinion is rather distracting.

The site looks dated and unprofessional, which is a shame as the company have a good reputation. As a site it doesn’t instill confidence. It is very basic and doesn’t appear to have been updated in a while.

The Myspace link works, (as do all the links) but the last entry on the MySpace page was 3 years ago, so that clearly hasn’t been updated in a while either.

Time for a redesign, so I’m choosing this as my redesign site.