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Showcase Of Web Design In Germany


Germany, which is situated in the heart of Europe and neighbors nine other countries, is not only the motherland of eminent philosophers, poets, composers, world-famous automobiles and great beer, but also a place where some of the most talented and highly ranked Web designers live.

German design is certainly worthy of respect and a delight to the eye of anyone who takes the time to observe it. For years, we have accumulated knowledge, upheld eternal principles of style, simplicity and accessibility, adopted best practices and kept up with the latest global trends. I’m proud to present here a showcase and discussion of world-class German Web design.

German Web Design - jung von matt1
German Web Design: jung von matt2

State Of Things Link

The creative industry in Germany is extremely competitive and consists of thousands of freelancers, studios and agencies. We have the pleasure here of presenting a brief interview with several German design gurus to lend some insight into the local design scene. As talented creative professionals, blog and book authors and freelancers, they are passionate about sharing their knowledge with others. Our participants are:

  • Prof. Fons Matthias Hickmann3, graphic designer, typographer, Professor of communication design at the University of the Arts Berlin, Director of Fons Hickmann m23 design studio, author of “Beyond Graphic Design” and “Touch Me There” books;
  • Mike John Otto4, founder and Creative Director of blackbeltmonkey design studio;
  • Kai Becker, Creative Director at Elephant Seven agency;
  • Christian Bartsch5, Associate Creative Director at Neue Digitale / Razorfish agency;
  • Dirk Ollmann6, freelance Creative Director;
  • Markus Angermeier7, design freelancer;
  • Björn Seibert8, Web designer, information architect, founder of the Webzeugkoffer blog, and author of the book “Professionelles Webdesign mit (X)HTML und CSS”;
  • Dirk Behlau9, graphic designer and photographer.

German Web Design - creative style agentur10
creative style agentur11

Question: Could you please describe the current state of the German design market. What is the life of a freelancer, developer or designer in Germany like? How much do designers earn?

Prof. Fons Matthias Hickmann: Working with interesting and open-minded people is not something you can take for granted. And earning money by doing what you love involves luck.

Mike John Otto: The current situation for good designers, developers and especially freelancers is surprisingly good. That strange year 2009 wasn’t as bad as many thought it would be, and there was a big demand for good creatives with experience to help realize projects at agencies. As many bigger agencies reduced their team sizes, freelancers were highly welcome, and I honestly think that shrinking in such a “crisis” always benefits the quality of creative projects, because people try harder to prove themselves with good work instead of just doing their job.

Kai Becker: I think 2009 has been a hard year for designers. Although we had a lot of work (compared to conventional advertising agencies), many clients cut their budgets, which often meant less time for the design process. I also missed jobs in which the design or idea played a leading role. Briefings were very conservative or half-hearted and often came with a very reduced budget. A screen designer earns around €2000 to 2800; from there on you’d be an Art Director. Most of them earn €2900 to 4000, but a few earn a bit higher. Freelance screen designers earn in the range of €150 to 250 per day, Freelance art directors get from €300 to 500. Because conventional agencies had to sack quite a few designers, a lot more freelancers have been available in 2009, and as far as I know they have had a hard time.

Armin Morbach in Showcase of Web Design in Germany12
Armin Morbach13

Christian Bartsch: I think we have the perfect market right now for small studios and freelancers. All the big agencies tried to build up knowledge of digital services in the past five years to be more integrated. Those that failed now have to to work with specialists and independent freelance networks to be competitive. Clients want their 360° communication, and you need professionals for that. A lot of these professionals, including myself, can be found on Design made in Germany14, a platform for German designers. Money-wise, I would say it is the same as everywhere else. If you are good, you’ll be booked.

Dirk Ollmann: The financial crisis had a strong impact on the freelance market. I know a lot of them were starving and sleeping under the bridges in Hamburg. Just joking. Life is not that bad, but agencies tried to manage all of their work with their own staff, and so hiring freelancers was a no-go for the last two years. Now the market is rising again, and the fact that agencies were very cautious and kept their staff counts low will now help freelancers. An art director can earn between €300 and 500 a day, depending on his skills, quality and speed.

Björn Seibert: Web designers and developers are working — surprise, surprise — as freelancers and employees. Freelancers work more on interdisciplinary projects and teams. The employees work in small specialized agencies, in bigger full-service agencies and large industry enterprises. I would guess the majority work for small to mid-sized businesses. But overall, I don’t think that this is particular to the German market.

Working as a Web designer or developer is rarely a 9:00 to 5:00 job. Your income depends of whether you work as a freelancer or employee. Secondly, it depends on whether you work for a small agency or large enterprise. It may also depend on education. Employees can earn from €35,000 up to 50,000 or even more. As a freelancer, it depends on your market, target groups and customers. As a freelancer, you can and should ask for an hourly rate of at least €50 and up.

German Web Design - sven kils - graphic studios15
sven kils – graphic studios16

Dirk Behlau: Hmm… I have been working as a freelance graphic designer and photographer for ten years now, and I have been lucky enough to develop Pixeleye Interactive (my business) from year to year. I mainly work for international lifestyle, car and custom-bike magazines and top brands. For example, I was in Mexico with the Finnish rock band Leningrad Cowboys in the fall of 2009; we will produce a photo book and DVD documentary together. All I mean to say with this example is that I am not sitting in my office every day from 9:00 to 5:00. I travel a lot, meet cool people and a lot of new things happen. So no day is like another, which keeps me motivated. How much do designers earn? That depends on how “established” you are in the business… I have all I want and can make a good living out of it.

Question: Are there any patterns of usability or rules of thumb that are typical of German design? Are the standards of Web design in Germany changing?

Prof. Fons Matthias Hickmann: Although the Web is completely different from print or anything else we thought we knew, you can still apply your principles and tastes to Web design. At the moment, almost anything is possible, and that makes it exciting.

Mike John Otto: Well historically, German design has always been really clear and straightforward. On the one hand, everything produced in Germany, including the design, is usually very precise and content-driven. On the other hand, I see a new trend of more experimental designs that try to break out of grids and usability patterns. As globalization hits every one of us, and with one click anyone can see what is highly rated in other countries, German designers are trying to develop something new, a new German design language, as happened on the German music scene before.

A new German aesthetic language that still hasn’t quite developed but will hopefully soon be as strong as the German music and art scene is today. The most creative areas in Germany currently are Berlin, Hamburg and the Frankfurt am Main area. A lot of smaller German design and digital studios pop up and do remarkable work far away from daily advertising work, even if the big networks still play a bigger role in the German creative scene than they do in, for example, the UK or Sweden.

{ths} in Showcase of Web Design in Germany17

Kai Becker: I wouldn’t say so. This is a difficult point, but I can’t see anything explicitly “German” in Web design from here. Standards are always changing, but I think that affects Web designers and developers worldwide.

Christian Bartsch: The design culture in Germany is still very young. With the rise of Berlin as one of the hot spots in Europe, German design has taken a big step. We had and still have a lot of influence from Spain and France. If we speak of Web design, Germany always has been competitive in the global market. You will find a lot of German projects on The FWA423319.

Dirk Ollmann: For me, as a creative director who has worked on a lot on big brands in the car and consumer goods industries, the financial crisis has had a huge effect on marketing strategy and the process and technology of the Web designer. It turns out that the short-term “return on investment” is more important than long-term brand building.

Today, analytics is the driving force in Germany. But what effect has this had on Web design? The trend is “back from Flash to HTML.” This is the technology that works best with Google’s search engine. Actually, the new BMW20 website design is based on HTML. Last year’s Web designers were expected to have a lot of skill in Flash and inventing new navigation concepts and visualizations. Now, we’re going back to the roots of Internet, keeping it very simple, do everything that Google wants and trying to sell the product with a few clicks. That’s it.

German Web Design - bellyshades21

Björn Seibert: First of all, I don’t think there should be a special rule set for a specific national market. We and others are working hard for a common understanding of Web standards, usability and accessibility around the world. There could be derivative or special requirements for special markets or target groups. But there is foremost a strong demand for international and widespread standards by which every designer and developer can build websites and applications of high quality and a high level of user experience.

Spurred by the Web standards movement in the US, and led by “General” Zeldman and his combatants, the Web standards movement accelerated very quickly in Germany as well. Many of us in Germany started thinking about those standards and proposed best practices. In 2005, Jens Grochtdreis23 founded the Webkrauts24. The Webkrauts are working hard on doing awareness training for Web standards and best practices in Web design and development. Their publications help to educate others and point to obstacles.

German Web Design - colibri - contactlinse & brille25
colibri – contactlinse & brille26

Question: How important is professional education in the design industry, and do you feel that the education available in Germany is adequate to develop world-class designers?

Prof. Fons Matthias Hickmann: Professional education is very important, and more open-minded and sensible young talents are out there than ever before. I am anxious for them to take over soon.

Mike John Otto: I truly believe that all world-class designers have an innate feel for design but have also learned and shaped their skills at art school and by working in agencies. So yes, a professional education is not only important but essential, and a few very good ones not only teach students creative and software techniques but open their eyes to art, design history, common trends and design rules as well as things like film, theater and marketing. Nowadays, design students who are looking for jobs have to know much more than they did a couple of years ago: about film, conceptual thinking, advertising rules, digital trends such as social media and online campaigns, to name just a few.

These so-called “digital natives” have a much wider range of techniques and hardware to mix into their daily work than I had when starting out in the business in 2000. This is a big opportunity and a big pain at the same time. Every good school has to prepare to students to meet this wide new range of market needs.

German Web Design - figurenschneider puppenbau norman schneider, bielefeld27
figurenschneider puppenbau norman schneider, bielefeld28

Kai Becker: For advertising agencies, your portfolio matters the most. I judge designers by the work they have done already, not if they have studied the right thing. And yet Burg Giebichenstein in Halle, Germany, is the place that develops world-class online designers. If you can make it there, you’ll make it anywhere.

Christian Bartsch: I think professional education shapes your style and keeps you focused. I experienced big differences in quality at German design schools. After four years, I transferred because I was unsatisfied with the conditions at my school. Design is evolving. Multi-touch and augmented reality offer new ways to approach content. Interfaces are becoming more and more complex. Some schools still think in paper.

Dirk Ollmann: Of course, a professional education is essential. It speeds up your talent. But learning your craft is only one aspect. You should also use your university or design school to meet people and network. World-class designers? Of course there is enough room for them in Germany. Have a look at the biggest multi-touch wall29 made by Sensory Minds!

MWP Online in Showcase of Web Design in Germany30
MWP Online31

Björn Seibert: This topic was the subject of my latest article32 for the German “Webstandards Magazin” (Issue 4/2009). And yes, I think there is a need for more professionalism in terms of education and orientation for job starters in the field of Web design and development. Indeed, we are seeing a bit of action with apprenticeship; people who study digital media and design have the opportunity to do some specialization. But so far, there is no special degree course or job training that fully concentrates on educating Web designers and developers. In my opinion, there is still a lot of work to do in offering more professional education and better safeguards to hopeful professionals — safeguard that would keep people from thinking that any Web design job could easily be done by their neighbor’s son.

Dirk Behlau: Nowadays, getting a good education is becoming more and more important for someone to be successful in the design field. There are a lot of good people out there. I started 15 years ago as a full auto-didact, developing my own style and look. Designers coming from university are often very impractical in normal “office life.” They may have learned how to use programs like Photoshop, but they don’t have the experience to be successful in their business. Self-marketing and self-promotion are very important, and these are not taught very well in universities.

Question: Where do you get inspiration from? How do you stay informed about the latest design trends? What books and magazines do you read?

Prof. Fons Matthias Hickmann: Like almost everybody I speak to about inspiration, I feel overwhelmed by the amount of information we process every day from the Web. A few websites are clever and thoughtful, giving insight into the creation and process of design, rather than just showing random pictures. Where do I get my inspiration from? From every form of culture. And from daily life. The Web now plays a part in both.

Mike John Otto: I get my inspiration from a mixture of influences: Hamburg and Berlin’s night scenes, youth culture and their dress and music codes, travelling, music magazines and my daily work with colleagues and students from my class. Of course, I check out design websites such as The FWA423319, High Floater34 and Digital Arts35, as well as magazines such as PAGE31136 and IdN4737, but I don’t get inspired by checking out other design work. True inspiration comes from fields such as music, theatre and story-telling. Sometimes new ideas are born of these influences, and sometimes one kind of recycles all of this stuff and creates something new from it.

German Web Design - visualorgasm news38

Dirk Ollmann: Before you design, you need an idea. I think this is the most difficult thing. A lot of designers use the Internet to try to come up with a unique idea, but that’s the last place to find it. I try to keep my eyes open for things that happen in real life… keep my eyes open and record. After a while, you have a database of ideas waiting for implementation. Stop working, get inspired! Ideas will come by doing something completely different. Try something! I use to pet my cat, kite-surf, play bass, etc. Nevertheless, there are some websites I check regularly: Behance40 for random searching (those are some cool guys from Eastern Europe); for style, The Cool Hunter41 is one of my favourite websites; and The FWA423319 for state-of-the-art Flash design.

Björn Seibert: A normal day starts with Google Reader and the Twitter timeline. These are my main sources of information for keeping up to date on Web design trends and issues. Actually, I’m subscribed to about 230 feeds, mostly covering design, Web design and development, usability and user experience topics. Further, I’m subscribed to some Posterous blogs. I love to discover small new unknown blogs with good and relevant copywriting. For me, inspiration is nothing you go out looking for. It starts with good content, smart insight into Web design issues and smart solutions to common problems. I read a lot of Web design-related books. Lately: Sexy Web Design, Designing with Web Standards, Integrierte Informationsarchitektur. At the moment, there is only one magazine I’m willing to pay for, the quarterly Webstandards Magazin43.

German Web Design - iconwerk, custom icon design & pictogram design.44

Dirk Behlau: I travel a lot, meet new artists and exchange ideas with them. And I do read a lot of magazines and check websites, blogs, social network websites, etc. So, I do look everywhere, and I’m interested in a wide range of themes from movies, music, video games, travel, lifestyle, hot-rodding, custom culture, skateboarding, custom bikes, graffiti, tattoos, to name just a few. I do get a lot of magazines from around the world every month, covering everything from cars to tattoos to music. I love the Juxtapoz46 and IdN4737 magazines.

Question: Are there any other issues unique to German Web design? Do you see any remarkable differences in comparing it to creative industries worldwide?

Prof. Fons Matthias Hickmann: One obvious difference is the language. English is omnipresent on the Web, German is big as well. How should we deal with that? Is translation a good method, or an alternative? How will our culture change? What can we do as designers?

Mike John Otto: Not really. British, US and Swedish influences are big in Germany, and so the product is becoming more and more similar. A German design and Web design language is being formulated more and more but is still not strong enough. Most of the German work seen at award shows and in magazines is still mainstream from a handful of very well-known German agencies. Although German ads and design are winning more and more at award shows: Germany was in the top five in quite a few rankings this year. I hope a remarkable difference will show itself in German design sometime soon.

German Web Design - moargh48

Kai Becker: There may be slight differences between European, Asian and American Web design, but I would not say they are remarkable. Perhaps German Web design is typically straight, clean, simple and tidy. Kind of what you would expect from a German, wouldn’t you? :)

Christian Bartsch: Right now, Flash development is particularly good in Germany. Small studios such as blackbeltmonkeys50, Less Rain51 and Artificial Duck52 are pushing the limits.

Dirk Ollmann: Germans are often seen as “number crunchers” — that’s absolutely true. The big brands always want to know what the results will be before we do anything, and we try to avoid any mistakes. The result is that we miss a lot of opportunities that the Internet provides. But maybe this is a worldwide problem as well. Styles and trends? I hope German Web designers will kill glossy 3-D buttons, wet-floor shadows and those ’80s trend next year. Website design will evolve into big clear typography, short copy, only a few themes per page, big easy buttons and a lot of video content.

Making videos will become increasingly easy, and we’ll turn away from the high-end glossy advertising grease. Even big brands will host their videos on YouTube or Google Video to allow users to embed. “Sharing” will be the driving force of content and Web design in the coming years. The biggest task of brands will be to conquer social networks like Facebook, MySpace, etc. But most brands have no idea how to achieve this. For me, this is one of the most interesting fields in advertising today.

German Web Design - das leben ist wie eine schachtel pralinen53
das leben ist wie eine schachtel pralinen54

Björn Seibert: I generally have a more global point of view. But what must be emphasized is that a line of German Web design has emerged. There are a bunch of very talented Web designers, and the Web standards movement is upon us, in no small part thanks to the Webkrauts initiative. There is also a highly recommended Web-standards podcast Technikwürze55 that covers the latest Web design trends and features the best from the Web in Germany. But I think that sometimes we should be more self-confident and share with each other our thoughts about modern Web design and current issues.

Dirk Behlau: That’s difficult to answer because I work for international clients that demand my particular style. Sometimes I think European and American clients are more experimental.

What’s Going On In Germany? Link

Events Link

A number of design and tech-related events happen in Germany on regular basis. Some worth mentioning are Forum Mediendesign; Designers’ Open; webinale ; WebTech, DesignCamp (January 24-25, 2009 in Cologne). A famous international arts festival, “Illustrative,” was held this year in Berlin.

Awards Link

Among the most prestigious awards in the German design industry are the red dot design award, iF communication design award, Designpreis, Gute Gestaltung, Deutscher Multimedia Award (DMMA), BIENE-Award and LeadAward.

Showcase Of Web Design In Germany Link

In this showcase, we bring you a selection of the most inspiring and well-designed websites in Germany, either personal experimental or corporate.

friseur hamburg – rolf & bernd71

German Web Design - friseur hamburg - rolf & bernd72


Junopilot in Showcase of Web Design in Germany74

pisto – magazin über web und die welt75

German Web Design - pisto - magazin ?ber web und die welt76

erfolgreiche webseiten und marketing-kampagnen aus hamburg77

German Web Design - erfolgreiche webseiten und marketing-kampagnen aus hamburg78

Kaiserschnitt Hair-Styling79

Kaiserschnitt Hair-Styling in Showcase of Web Design in Germany80


German Web Design - bieh.de82

tanner + tailor83

German Web Design - tanner + tailor - eigene accessoires gestalten84

oliver twardowski, addicted to coffee85

German Web Design - oliver twardowski,  addicted to coffee86

dinge geregelt kriegen – ohne einen funken selbstdisziplin87

German Web Design - dinge geregelt kriegen - ohne einen funken selbstdisziplin88

Michael Heinsen89

Michael Heinsen in Showcase of Web Design in Germany90


German Web Design - artcore-illustrations92

flaek footwear93

German Web Design - flaek footwear94

Bianca Elmer95

German Web Design - postbank96

kinderspiele, malvorlagen, kindergeburtstag97

German Web Design - kinderspiele, malvorlagen, kindergeburtstag98

stefan velthuys – web & frontend-designer99

German Web Design - stefan velthuys - web & frontend-designer100

stilvolles webdesign, printdesign, illustration und animation101

German Web Design - stilvolles webdesign, printdesign, illustration und animation102

noel nieto – strassenfussballer103

German Web Design - noel nieto - strassenfussballer104

high quality writing instruments105

German Web Design - high quality writing instruments106

bauer konzept & gestaltung107

German Web Design - bauer konzept & gestaltung108

andreas mühe109

German Web Design - andreas m?he110

visionpixel mediendesign111

German Web Design - visionpixel mediendesign112


NerdFilms in Showcase of Web Design in Germany114


Jägermeister in Showcase of Web Design in Germany116

J. Konrad Schmidt117

J. Konrad Schmidt in Showcase of Web Design in Germany118


Donate-a-meal in Showcase of Web Design in Germany120

Kubis Welt121

Kubis Welt in Showcase of Web Design in Germany122

Julius Brink & Jonas Reckermann123

Julius Brink & Jonas Reckermann in Showcase of Web Design in Germany124


Irrland in Showcase of Web Design in Germany126

Lukas Lindemann Rosinski127

Lukas Lindemann Rosinski in Showcase of Web Design in Germany128

Diet Riot129

Diet Riot in Showcase of Web Design in Germany130

The Lotus Eater131

The Lotus Eater in Showcase of Web Design in Germany132

Holsten Pilsener133

Holsten Pilsener in Showcase of Web Design in Germany134


Paulaner in Showcase of Web Design in Germany136

Allude Cashmere137

Allude Cashmere in Showcase of Web Design in Germany138

Ochs Schmidhuber139

Ochs Schmidhuber in Showcase of Web Design in Germany140

Arthur Schlovsky141

Arthur Schlovsky in Showcase of Web Design in Germany142

Marc Aurel143

Marc Aurel in Showcase of Web Design in Germany144

Carsten Mell145

Carsten Mell in Showcase of Web Design in Germany146


Michelbergerhotel in Showcase of Web Design in Germany148


Kubikfoto of Web Design in Germany150

Pritt World151

Pritt World in Showcase of Web Design in Germany152


Supergid in Showcase of Web Design in Germany154

Kiri Spass155

Kiri Spass in Showcase of Web Design in Germany156


Neubauladen in Showcase of Web Design in Germany158


Telemaz in Showcase of Web Design in Germany160


Designschneider in Showcase of Web Design in Germany162

Andreas Hinkel163

Andreas Hinkel in Showcase of Web Design in Germany164

Wendt & Kuehn165

Wendt & Kuehn in Showcase of Web Design in Germany166

Santamaria Tour167

Santamaria Tour in Showcase of Web Design in Germany168

Isabel Abedi169

Isabel Abedi in Showcase of Web Design in Germany170


Kultika in Showcase of Web Design in Germany172


Quintezzense in Showcase of Web Design in Germany174

Wild Web Woods175

Wild Web Woods in Showcase of Web Design in Germany176

Mustafas Gemüsekebap177

Mustafas Gemüsekebap in Showcase of Web Design in Germany178

My Lane179

My Lane in Showcase of Web Design in Germany180

photocase – kreative stockfotos181

German Web Design - photocase - kreative stockfotos182

misfall – t-shirt183

German Web Design - misfall - t-shirt184

habitat seven – very flexible185

German Web Design - habitat seven - very flexible186

cape arcona type foundry187

German Web Design - cape arcona type foundry188

vier für texas *ideenwerk189

German Web Design - vier für texas *ideenwerk190

wm team – showtime for your brand191

German Web Design - wm team - showtime for your brand192

xplicit ffm / grafik – und webdesign aus frankfurt193

German Web Design - xplicit ffm / grafik - und webdesign aus frankfurt194

Showcase Of Design Agencies Link

The design sector in Germany is dominated by a number of highly professional creative agencies that have earned international public attention and many prestigious awards: among them the red dot design award, iF communication design award and Designpreis.

Scholz & Volkmer195
Clients: Mercedes-Benz, Adidas, Samsung, Coca-Cola

Scholz & Volkmer in Showcase of Web Design in Germany196

Clients: Adidas, American Express, Audi, BASF, BMW, Bosch, Braun, Canon, Chevrolet, Citroen,Douglas, Ehrmann, Fiat, Ford, Gerry Weber

recom in Showcase of Web Design in Germany198

Clients: Adidas, Audi, BMW, Breuninger, L’Oreal, Nivea, T-Mobile, Volkswagen

Mutabor in Showcase of Web Design in Germany200

Tilt Design Studio201
Clients: Audi, Belmondo

Tilt Design Studio in Showcase of Web Design in Germany202

Saint Elmo’s203
Clients: BWM, Lufthansa, AxelSpringer

Saint Elmo's in Showcase of Web Design in Germany204

GNC Design205
Clients: HTC Deutschland, Ford Deutschland, Renault Nissan Deutschland

GNC Design in Showcase of Web Design in Germany206

Toca Me207
Clients: Amway, BMW, Burda, Compaq, Fujitsu Siemens, Henkel, L’Oreal, Mc Donalds, Microsoft, MINI, Müller Milch, Novartis, Red Bull, RitterSport, Sony BMG, Vodafone, Xbox

Toca Me in Showcase of Web Design in Germany208

hauser lacour209
Clients: Bayer, Berlin Chemie, Commerzbank, Lufthansa

hauser lacour in Showcase of Web Design in Germany210

Clients: McDonalds, Adidas, Sarotti, Hasseröder, hohes-C, L’Oreal

urbn; in Showcase of Web Design in Germany212

Clients: Mitsubishi, Edeka, FC Bayern, Chelsea FC

blackbeltmonkey in Showcase of Web Design in Germany214

Clients: Beck’s, Coca-Cola, Commerzbank, Deutsche Bank, GfK Group, Jay-Z, Leica Camera, Mercedes Benz, Metro Group, o2 Deutschland, Smirnoff, Swarovski, ThyssenKrupp, Toblerone

Taobot in Showcase of Web Design in Germany216

Clients: L’Oreal, Garnier, Volkswagen, Deutsche Telekom, Vodafone, Dior, Maybelline, WWF, Canon


Goldener Westen219
Clients: Axel Springer, Coca-Cola, Edeka, ZKM Karlsruhe

Goldener Westen in Showcase of Web Design in Germany220

Clients: Volkswagen, OTTO, Conrad, Audi, Klett Verlag, Lufthansa, Nici, eBay

MetaDesign in Showcase of Web Design in Germany222

Clients: Audi, Bayer, BenQ, Coca-Cola, F.A.Z., Siemens, Sony, Triumph, Volkswagen

Aperto in Showcase of Web Design in Germany224

Clients: Adidas, Audi, Comdirect, Görtz, s.Oliver

Loved in Showcase of Web Design in Germany226

Clients: Aral, Bayer

Antwerpes in Showcase of Web Design in Germany228

Are We Designer229
Clients: BASF, Burda, Deutsche Telecom, Vodafone

Are We Designer in Showcase of Web Design in Germany230

Clients: ARD, Beate Uhse, Bild, BMG, Burger King, Chupa Chups, Procter & Gamble, Red Bull, RTL, Siemens, Skoda, Universal Music, ZDF

Marctropolis in Showcase of Web Design in Germany232

Parasol Island233
Clients: MTV, IKEA, Sony Ericsson

Parasol Island in Showcase of Web Design in Germany234

Clients: DHL, Mazda, Milka, Lacoste, Jaguar, RTL, Nintendo Deutschland, Disney, Procter & Gamble, Ferrero Deutschland, Karlsberg, Nike, Renault Germany, Warner Music Germany, Sparkasse, Opel, MTV

Fiftyeight in Showcase of Web Design in Germany236

Showcase Of Web Design Freelancers Link

Besides the professional creative agencies, we find a lot of freelancers working in the industry.

United States of Design237
Clients: Adidas, Audi, Bacardi, Berliner Sparkasse, Bertelsmann, Coca-Cola, Deutsche Bank, Mini, MTV, Mozilla, Plazes, Sprite, Siemens, Sony, Sony Ericsson, TDK, Volkswagen

United States of Design in Showcase of Web Design in Germany238

Martin Anderle239
Clients: Adidas, BMW, Sony Ericcson, Volvo, ZDF

Martin Anderle in Showcase of Web Design in Germany240

Clients: Stiftung Warentest, Daimler, SPD Berlin, Plazes

kosmar in Showcase of Web Design in Germany242

Dirk Schütze243
Clients: Leibniz, Konica Minolta, Deutsche Post

Dirk Schütze in Showcase of Web Design in Germany244

Clients: Gillette, IKEA

Radekal in Showcase of Web Design in Germany246

Clients: Peugeot, Ford, Jaguar

mediziehm in Showcase of Web Design in Germany248

Matthias Dittrich249

Matthias Dittrich in Showcase of Web Design in Germany250

Sugah Design251

Sugah Design in Showcase of Web Design in Germany252


psychosystems in Showcase of Web Design in Germany254

Thorsten Konrad255

Thorsten Konrad in Showcase of Web Design in Germany256


sieben:null in Showcase of Web Design in Germany258


chez-boo in Showcase of Web Design in Germany260

Hoan Luu Duc261

Hoan Luu Duc in Showcase of Web Design in Germany262

David Hellmann263

David Hellmann in Showcase of Web Design in Germany264


C.L.I.T.O.R.I.O.U.S in Showcase of Web Design in Germany266

Round-Up Of German Design Resources Link

To stay competitive and successful on the creative scene, we have to know what’s happening in the fields of Web design, Web development, graphic design and typography and know what trends are set to become the next big things in the design world.

The round-up below of over 70 design-related resources should give you an overview of German blogs, Web design galleries (both CSS and Flash), communities, social networks and magazines (both online offline). You would be well advised to read or at least occasionally look through these to catch up on the latest design trends and get a daily dose of inspiration and encouragement. I invite you to discover some of these unique and enjoyable resources!

Blogs Link

Web Design Galleries (CSS and Flash) Link

Magazines Link

Your Opinion Is Welcome! Link

What is your opinion of the German Web design scene? In case we’ve missed any exceptional websites, please share them, and your thoughts, in the comments section. We always look forward to your feedback and support!

You may be interested in the following related posts from our new series on global Web design:

Stay Tuned And Get In Touch! Link

This article is the fourth in our new Global Web Design series. Over the next months, we’ll be covering various continents, featuring Web developers and designs from different countries and looking closely at what is happening on the Web design scene worldwide.

If you”d like to prepare an article for this series, please contact us324, and we’ll discuss details.


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  1. 1

    Very nice “german-webdesign-summary”. Aygul, it’s like in other countries too – some good Webdesigners, some “less good” Webdesigners ;o)

    • 2

      Absolutely agreee with Steve,

      thanks for your work, but there are great philosophs and all the other disciplines in any country. This excessive overdose of “we are something special” in the intro is exactly the thing that makes it different to others, not the work.

      Good work, bad habit.

  2. 3

    Great Post, I Love Smashing Magazine….Everyday new Articles that inspire and surprise us..


  3. 4

    This sites have a particular stile! Love german designers.

  4. 5

    Mistyukevych Serge

    January 26, 2010 5:17 am

    Definately nice artworks!
    What’re (TOP 5) biggest agencies in german?

  5. 6

    damn that my website is not listed

    nick jantschke – freelancer – germany

  6. 7

    Love the designs & SM…
    Waiting for Indian showcase :)

  7. 8

    Wow, Germany can boast of so many great designers! A good bunch of inspiration in this post. Thanks.

  8. 9

    Some very interesting design here. I’m really liking the showcases from various countries. Thanks SM!

  9. 10

    I read smashing daily and there are lots of reason behind that……

  10. 11

    You should update the events, guess what: Even we Germans have already celebrated the New Year. :-)

  11. 12

    I read smashing daily and there are lots of reasons behind that……

  12. 13

    I was expecting this article for a long time. Great. Thank you.
    “straight, clean, simple and tidy”

  13. 14

    something you guys really haved to missed to list is
    check there site, it’s freaking awesome!

  14. 15

    You forgot
    Great web design startup!

  15. 17

    anonymous (berlinerin)

    January 26, 2010 6:39 am

    Where are the women design gurus?

  16. 18

    @Mistyukevych Serge
    the biggest web agencies in germany

  17. 19

    This is a great series. Can you guys do a piece on India? I’d love to see that.

  18. 20

    Germany 4 evaa =)

  19. 21

    Nice collection! If you look at the website of Mutabor and these flipping signs: Sometimes one of the girls does a mistake. It’s really funny to see ;)

  20. 22

    stunishing post.SM is the best around:D

  21. 23

    Sorry, but i’ll have to swim up the stream of elogious comments on this one.

    How come not a single one of the so-called designers mention the heritage of Bauhaus and its application in web design? Or the ZKM, for that matter?

    it strikes me that you ask web designers to talk about their country’s web design. Web designers live on the web and have their own sub-culture. Will anyone admit that none of the websites shown here have anything really different than the usual flow of today’s mainstream webdesign icons?
    If you want to find the specificities of German (or any country for that matter) have a look at their experimental actors, not the mainstream. Ask real designers (real= seeking something new) what is their take on the specifics of German history/ history of art and its influence in german (web) design.

    By the way, it’s 2010: it’s ok to say that the nazis had one of the most powerful logo, without implying that you support that ideology – we are talking design, not philosophy.

    Hope this helps trigger a more interesting discussion.

    • 24

      Agreed. So many SM postings lack any historic look back or insights how certain styles developed. They are usually shallow link lists with loads of “awesomeness”. But most people handle design posting like men’s magazines: they only here for the pictures …

      I like to add the following topic to your list:

      * German Surrealism & Dadaism
      * Berlin in the 1920’s and 1930’s as an extremely progressive city / cultural mix
      * German “Sachlichkeit”, especially such great Designer as Otl Aicher and his famous Olympic Pictograms
      * one of the grestest Modernist and Typographer Jan Tschichold

      And so much more …

      • 25

        Even though this particular post doesn’t mention Bauhaus and none of the German designers interviewed mention the history, to generalize Smashing Magazine not covering this is not fair. They’ve dedicated posts just on Bahaus (see: Bauhaus: Ninety Years of Inspiration). This is a showcase of current Web Design in Germany, not the history of design in Germany. That later topic alone can span three articles.

      • 26

        @pixline: Do you really think the links you posted are good examples for german webdesign. I guess 10pt fonts are not really state of the art and the usage of black and white and one highlight color (usually magenta) is not that innovative.

        You are right, maybe, the shown website look quite similar to other countries, but what do you expect? We germans life in a bubble, without looking left or right? I am not sure about the main goal of this article, but I guess they try to give an overview of general webdesign in german. So it’s not about art in german or about the history and that’s what they have done.

        By the way the Logo of the Nazis was a egypt symbol for luck and the Nazis mirrored it.

        @orangeguru: What the hell you are talking about, this article is about design and not art. Sure there is a synergy between both, but where is the point, you want to have a art lesson or talking about current design directions?

    • 28

      I don’t agree that “real” designers are those who seek for something new. I don’t care if the design is inventive as long as it looks and feels good. And as the end user, i find the websites you cite as examples neither beautiful nor usable. You suggest interesting topics to discuss though, they just have nothing to do with showcase articles. Why don’t you write for SM?

    • 29

      There is no philosophy in nacism, I´m convinced.

  22. 30

    Roland C. Müller

    January 26, 2010 7:12 am

    thank you for this great post!
    best wishes

  23. 31 is the worst example for german webdesign ever-i cant believe it. the real view to jvm is here (only in german)
    the others are very good.

    But webdesign is only good, when its user-friendly. And some website are …

  24. 32

    It would have been nice if you had included some women. This certainly gives the impression that German Web design is an exclusively male club.

  25. 33

    Beautiful work!

  26. 34

    as a german designer i really like this post.

  27. 35

    Another one of these endless lists of “cool designs” without any real insights into the teutonic mentality and historic roots.

    Most of all it misses some good reflection on the most important aspect of German Webdesign: the German Clients and how to do business with them.

  28. 40

    Fantastic collection, some really innovative and diverse designs here. Good work Smashing.

  29. 41

    Great article and quite well presented. Love the amount of consistently good content you guys deliver!! Keep it up.

  30. 42

    quite an extensive list it seems. Pitty almost half of it doesn’t load inside this page.


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