Shalom! Showcase Of Web Design In Israel

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Israel is a young country with an old heart. It has been quickly built up over the last 60 years as an independent democratic Jewish state and is shockingly cutting edge for a country so new.

It is a tiny surreal sliver of land smack dab in the middle of the Middle East: a very European, modern civilization… just programmed to Jewish tradition. Israel has great weather, nice beaches along the Mediterranean sea, fresh and tasty food and a warm and friendly culture. It is home to historic holy sites of the world’s three major religions, and buses drive down streets whose stones are older than anything you’ll find in Europe.

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Israeli design at its best: ILook2, an Israeli street-fashion blog. The text on the left side says: “Send me a good picture of a hipster and win 300 bottles of Maccabi beer” (via Tal Sach).

It feels as if Israel has one foot in Silicon Valley and the other in ancient Canaan — with an undercurrent of Middle Eastern hospitality and culture in this already multi-cultural society. And yet, English is commonly spoken here because many Jews from all over the world immigrate here regularly (not to mention the thousands of tourists from around the globe who pour in for sun, falafel, nightlife and a dash of biblical archaeology.) In some areas, you hear as much Spanish, French, Russian and English on the streets as Hebrew.

Because of its small size and the everyone-knows-everyone effect of being a bunch of Jews, cabin fever (and completion of mandatory army service for the younger generation) drives Israel’s citizens out on frequent travels across the globe, to India, Asia, and South America. As a result, a unique mix of cultural discoveries abroad is woven into Israeli culture.

Tel Aviv is Israel’s most urban, chic city: the capital of all things sexy, secular and spiritual (in alternative ways to traditional Judaism.) You can read more on Tel Aviv’s unique soul in this article3 by Ehud Azriel Meir.

Much like many of Israel’s cities — hastily built and functional, yet poorly planned — such is the unfortunate state of most of the country’s websites. Most Israeli websites look unfinished, and they probably are. And Hebrew being a right-to-left language doesn’t help! Being victims of circumstance, Israeli Web designers cannot unleash their creative potential to make modern, usable working websites.

Web design in Israel - agadir4
agadir5, a Hamburger joint.

Even though some cutting-edge technologies are being developed right here in Israel — which is home to former hot startups such as ICQ (which became AOL messenger) and Intel (which is inside your machine… have a look!) — most business owners still putter around in IE6. Israel opened its first official Mac store only last year.

What’s Unique About Israeli Web Design?

Here are some other issues that designers face here (and, I imagine, in most places outside the US, Canada and Western Europe):

  • Websites must work in legacy versions of IE (though IE6 is finally almost out). Israeli business owners emphasize this more than getting their websites to work in Safari or Firefox.
  • There is a strong liking for Flash-based designs… it must be a cultural thing.
  • Little value is given to Web designers (and those in related fields, such as copywriting — although marketers and SEO people seem to being doing okay), and many designers are not taking back their profession.
  • Clients care more about cost than usability and standards.
  • CSS-based designs are not standard, and many of the people responsible for hiring are not aware of it.
  • Big agencies are usually asked to make conventional designs, and although they do quite impressive branding work, the websites they turn out are behind the times. Because they are launched by such big companies, the websites succeed “in spite of themselves,” leading many to believe that this is the formula for wildly successful websites: for Agency X to do our website the way they did for Company Y.

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The Lionways7 website.

  • Many entrepreneurs here believe that because they are smart and successful in tech that they know your field as well as their own. They think they can write English better than a US-born copywriter and can design better than a graduate of FIT. Needless to say, this can be frustrating for the person trying to build a new website for them.
  • Despite that, usability is starting to be demanded by many website owners, especially the genuinely intelligent tech companies, Web app providers and social media startups; hundreds of these are in Israel, mostly in English.
  • Israel is always a few years behind American and European trends and standards, and this is no different on the Internet.

The State Of Affairs

We spoke to key people in the Web design industry in Israel to get their point of view on the state of affairs.

Q: Do you find you have to convince and educate clients a lot to be able turn out the high-end websites that you do?

Arie Zonshine (Lionways.com8): “Most people calling for a quote don’t really know what they want. It’s as if they are calling to get the price of an air conditioner. It doesn’t matter if they want a new site or a make-over of an existing site: they usually don’t have written specifications, they don’t know what kind of pages they want and they don’t have a visual concept.

“So, I have to guide them through a series of questions, maybe looking at a few sites together in order to understand their needs. Sometimes, their lack of knowledge leads them ask for functionality that would work against them in terms of SEO, for example. I usually don’t have to work too hard to convince them to do things the right way.”

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Eran Pal10

Q: Are clients surprised by how much you quote them? What buzzwords do you hear most from clients?

Zonshine: “Always! Naturally, customers want the best price and, unfortunately in most cases, are not aware at all of the time and work invested. It’s even more problematic with issues such as Web standards and browser compatibility, because these aspects of the work have no visual impact on the website and are difficult for the client to appreciate. [I hear] SEO, AdWords and Flash. Very few mention browser compatibility, Web standards, semantic mark-up or CSS-based design”.

Q: Approximately what percentage of Israeli businesses are into the new standards of websites written in XHTML and CSS, that are non-Flash and that use minimal JavaScript?

Zonshine: “The numbers are unfortunately very low. I would say about 5%. Maybe less.”

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Alfred Gallery Exhibitions12

Q: Why do you think most Israelis are into conceptual Flash designs that are hard to navigate, outdated and slow? Is this a cultural thing? Are more people waking up?

Zonshine: “In too many initial conversations with potential clients, I hear requests to make things ‘Move on the screen like in PowerPoint.’ Many Israelis forget that the inside is just as important as the outside, and that foundations are more important than a cool façade (i.e. a flashy home page with clever animation) that has nothing behind it. I do believe it’s a cultural thing: you can see it in many areas. The ‘great façade with no foundation’ combo is very representative of Israeli culture. You see it everywhere. However, I do believe that appreciation of quality grows with time, experience and knowledge. More and more people call in already understanding the disadvantages of a Flash-only website”.

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Tower of David14

Q: Arie, I notice in your portfolio15 that you still use Flash, though you seem to have found the middle road between Flash and usability. Please explain.

Zonshine: “Exactly. We wanted to make the point that cool and functional can work together seamlessly and are not contradictory. It was indeed an early decision that I took together with my partner Dana Ronen, who is responsible for the Flash programming on the site. We wanted to show creativity and Flash capabilities but also show that it can be done without compromising the accessibility, functionality and SEO of the site.

“So, on almost every page, there is a small or big gimmick in Flash, depending on the content of the page and its function. On the home page, the flying business card gets center-stage; similarly, on the ‘About us’ page, the laptop CD tray makes an exciting entrance. On other pages we wanted the client to focus on the content itself, so the gimmicks were demoted to a supporting role and, in most cases, done in Flash (e.g. the credit card terminal, the coffee steam and the compass) and in other cases in jQuery (e.g. the changing color stamp on the contact page)”.

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Bee Creations Design Agency17

Q: How does the fact that Hebrew is written from right to left influence your design work?

Zonshine: “If the site will be Hebrew, you just need to flip your way of thinking horizontally. In terms of layout, it means that the logo would be probably placed in the top-right corner of the page rather than the top-left. You also need to mirror the placement of elements on the page, because the visitor’s eye-tracking patterns are mirrored in Hebrew.

“The issue becomes more complicated when the site has both Hebrew and English or another left-to-right language. A good example of a dilemma that arises is a design that has a large background image, which I use quite often. When the background image cannot be flipped, it usually results in the logo and other elements being positioned on the “wrong” side of the page for one of the languages (Lionways is a good example of that). If, on the other hand, the image can be flipped, it’s much easier, as the Jerusalem Camerata site shows [see below] — the large violin image is mirrored on the English side of the site”.

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Waltz with Bashir19

Another example of this issue is Twitter, which scrambles any right-to-left tweets to an almost ridiculous degree. But again, Israel’s creative minds come to the rescue with Talker20, a Twitter API-based… well, Twitter, except in Hebrew and right-to-left. Compare a Twitter Talker right-to-left account21 with a left-to-right account22.

Q: How does Hebrew affect other aspects of Web design?

Zonshine: “First of all, a much smaller selection of safe fonts can be used for live text. Arial is probably the most common, followed by Times New Roman, Tahoma and Courier. That’s it, more or less. There aren’t any equivalents of Trebuchet, Georgia, Palatino or other fonts.

“Also, if the site has both Hebrew and English, choosing a font for titles and logos becomes much trickier, because you usually need to choose two separate fonts — for English and Hebrew — that work well together. The Hiddush logo is a good example of that. I spent hours searching until I found a close-enough English font (Anderson the Secret Service) that worked well with the Hebrew one (AgadaMF), and even then I had to clean it a little to match the other. A few font shops in Israel, such as FontBit, offer quality fonts that are designed to blend well in both Hebrew and English”.

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“On top of all this, there are many technical problems with dealing with right-to-left texts in graphic elements, especially Flash components. Small and trivial things suddenly become an issue, such as the inability to control the location of punctuation marks, numbers and other symbols. Sometimes the only solution, as silly as it sounds, is simply to avoid certain characters, but this is impossible to control when dealing with dynamic content.“

Q: Do clients pay on time. And what is negotiating like?

Zonshine: “Negotiating is a part of Israel’s culture. People almost always ask for a discount. I almost always get paid on time”.

Uzi Shmilovici (co-CEO at Netcraft14424) adds: “A lot of the logos that are designed in Israel have English typography. So the question is, where should the logo appear on the site: the left side or the right side?”

Examining some of the biggest websites in Israel shows that this dilemma remains unsettled.

“The other issue”, Shmilovici continues, “is using English words and phrases (either quotes or special terms) in the middle of Hebrew sentences. They force users to change the direction of their reading, which affects the flow of the article and scanning”.

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Israeli web design: Confederation House26 by bigdesign27

Typography

Typography is one of the most interesting crafts related to Hebrew websites and design. While traditional Hebrew fonts are great for creating an ancient or holy atmosphere, Web designers face a big challenge in finding or creating modern (or even futuristic) fonts from an alphabet that was invented for one thing: Torah books.

Typography fans might be interested in the “Torah Scribe,” written by a person who handwrites Torah books and who follows a strict set of rules and guidelines. The slightest mistake makes the book un-kosher, and he has to throw it away and start all over again (which is why Torah books cost so much).

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Another trend in Hebrew typography is nostalgic fonts from the early days of the state (the British Mandate). A great example is the Palestina font created by Oded Ezer (see image below), which is an effort to fuse an ancient typeface to a modern design.

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Oded Ezer’s website30 is a great place to look for modern Israeli fonts and experiments in Hebrew typography. A leading Israeli typographic artist, Ezer also runs the blog Spare Type31. If you are into typography (and who isn’t?), you must check out two works by Ezer in particular: Ketubah32 and Typosperma33.

Any Israeli knows how hard it is to find beautiful fonts in Hebrew. Lucky we have Oded Ezer, a typographic artist, logo and type designer, lecturer and typographic experimentalist. His studio is located in Israel.

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Fontef36, Israeli font designers.

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Ha’Gilda38: Hebrew fonts

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Interesting Solutions to Israeli Design Problems

Yotam Hadar40 redesigned nrg.co.il41, Israel’s second-most popular news source and seventh most popular website. The old version had too many boxes, low readability and nowhere to focus the eye, not to mention unconventional and hard-to-use navigation. Since its redesign, the website has continually gained popularity (and the statistics show much longer stays), yielding more income and a smaller team on which to rely for maintenance. (The website was completed while the designer was working at Maariv, in collaboration with NRG’s design team, under chief designer Amir Hadad.)

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Efficiency Is A Double-Edged Sword

In a 62-year-old country that is in a constant state of war, where every citizen has to join the army at the age of 18, efficiency (not to be mistaken for productivity or effectiveness) is almost sacred. It has been the most important quality in building this country, and it tends to be the most valued quality in any project. One could say, “It doesn’t matter if it’s good, as long is it works…” Sort of… Close enough. Thus usability, aesthetics and trends are ignored quite often, making the job of the designer secondary.

Another side effect of this harsh efficiency-driven attitude is the de-emphasis on a proper technological education. Because clients only demand that things “work,” standards, trends and aesthetics are the last thing on a developer’s mind. In turn, clients lack a real understanding of the media, which is why so many Israeli websites use Flash. The lack of variety of supported Hebrew Web fonts is also a factor. But fortunately SEO is creeping in and forcing even the most stubborn clients to ditch Flash for HTML and to replace images with live text as much as possible, which will hopefully push typography awareness to the next level.

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ha’Sushia44 has an original navigation menu.

Adam Benayoun (CEO and co-founder of Lionite45), puts it very well: “It is a technology-oriented market. A lot of Israeli companies don’t focus on the front end, design, UI, experience, because we are all developing and selling technology to the US.”

Lea Aharonovitch (a senior product manager at Answers.com and a UI/UX blogger46) adds: “I would even go further to blame each and every one of us Israelis as consumers for not demanding higher standards from websites that prefer banner spots to design.”

“Just a quick look at some of the 130 Israeli Web 2.047 companies demonstrates how much creative types and services are trying to solve problems and foster new exciting ways to do more on the Web… If we support designers and let them show us what they can really offer, we stand a chance that the next ‘Made in Israel’ design article will boast about how Israel has become the cutting edge of intuitive and excellent user-centered design.”

Lea is also a former manager of UPA Israel (Usability Professionals Association), which recently initiated a series of usability reviews published weekly on Israel’s biggest news website Ynet48 (the equivalent of CNN in terms of traffic and importance), inspecting a different Israeli website every week.

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Tel Aviv city budget50

Q: What other setbacks against designers in Israel can you identify?

“Behind every Israeli designer stands a team of managers who just don’t get it,” says Aharonovitch. “Managers don’t think they can afford to offer simple, less monetized interfaces, so designers are required to add as many monetization elements as possible”.

Shmilovici: “Strong interactive companies lead clients to invest a lot of money in the media (where they have big commissions), and the result is usually less resources for UX and design (because the development part is a must anyway)”

Oded Ezer, whose work was featured earlier in this piece, give us a typographer’s point of view: “Conservativeness. Instead of relying on 3,000 years of documented culture and Jewish heritage, young designers are looking to modern European design for inspiration.”

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Dinamo-Dvash53

Local Influences

It’s worth mentioning that the second official language of Israel is Arabic, another right-to-left language with amazing appeal to typographers. But a whole other article would be required for that and for the question of why Israel has so few Arabic websites.

Shatil54

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Mossawa Center56

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Koloudtof58. This website is Hebrew but influenced by local cultures. Remarkably, about 50% of Israelis come from Arab countries.

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Let’s Turn To The Future

Web designers in Israel seem to have two choices: find work overseas, or deal with the conditions in Israel, which in most cases mean lower wages and having to dabble in print design and other unrelated design work. This is another reason why finding good examples of Israeli Web design is hard, because most of the work is done for European and American clients or, if done for domestic clients, just doesn’t compare to the quality of design overseas.

But as Israelis, we always look at the bright side and seek solutions. “Clients in Israel are just like clients all over the world,” says Adam Benayoun, putting as much of the blame on service providers. “We need to educate clients on the importance of design,” he says, advice that is as true of designers in Israel as it is anywhere else.

Web design in Israel - baboo60
Baboo61, a lighting boutique.

Lionite is a great example of Israeli creativity in business model and workflow. The Tel Aviv-based Web shop provides a complete solution for clients in Israel and overseas, combining development, design and even marketing. “Clients overseas prefer us because of our standards, not because of or despite of our being Israeli,” says CEO Adam Benayoun. “We believe you have to be good no matter where you are from, no excuses.”

Netcraft’s Uzi Shmilovici seems to agree with that philosophy: “Although Israel is not the cheapest place on earth, it is still cheaper than Europe and the US. That said, professionally, Israeli designers are definitely on par with European and American designers. Take those two facts together and you’ll understand why Israeli design gives you the best value for your money.”

Q: So, what do you think we have to offer the world in terms of style, influence, etc.?

Shmilovici: “I do think that some of our unique typography issues have led to some nice progress. Because the Israeli font inventory was weak, we had to come up with new fonts quickly. Some of those explorations, done by Oded Ezer for example, ended up in the MoMA.”

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Oded Ezer63

Aharonovitch: “Israel is considered one of most innovative nations in the world when it comes to technology. It’s hard to compete with our sense of creativity, our high level of adaptability and flexibility and our high skill level in problem-solving and other traits.

”While at times it may seem that we’re not organized or that our affairs are managed informally or that our processes are not well defined, these are our advantages when considering the Agile or Lean development method that has been gaining popularity recently. The last thing to mention is the emotional strength and maturity that many Israelis develop at an early age — mainly derived from growing up in as challenging an environment as the Middle East and serving in the army at the age of 18.”

Showcase of Israeli Web Design

Denis Zilber64

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Schlafstunde66

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Rachel Timor68

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Elad Tayer70

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Keoss Studios72 (warning: music is turned on automatically!)

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Anz.co.il74

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Arava76

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Rubin Museum78

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E-Dologic.co.il80

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Hayehudim82, an Israeli music band.

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Kid.org.il84

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Moran in the big city86

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Moran in the big city88

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Segal Wines90

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Sibling92

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Oded Babayoff94

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“The Block”96

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Israel Today98

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IE Studio100

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The Red Sea Jazz Festival Website102

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Zero Nine104

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Studiogavriel’s work106

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The Wall108, Jerusalem.

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Sipholux.co.il110

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3 Bears112

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Kitsh114

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Quicheria117, one of the many Flash-based websites in Israel (via Wix.com118)

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Terry Poison120, electro-rock and roll band.

Web design in Israel - 121

Duddi Hasson122, Fashion photographer.

Web design in Israel - duddi hasson123

halas.am124, Holon Art Lab Audio Service

Web design in Israel - halas.am125

shani bar126, Fashion designer.

Web design in Israel - shani bar127

while you were away128, Ben Ben-Horin.

Web design in Israel - while you were away129

hello supersize130, Matty Marianski (Supersize), Motion graphics and interaction design.

Web design in Israel - hello supersize131

The Jerusalem Camerata132

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Chansonsim.com134

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Hydros136

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Israeli Designer Showcase

Those who are able to rise above the circumstances end up turning out top-notch websites. Some such stars are featured here.

Shual138 (meaning “Fox” in Hebrew) is a two-person team that churns out modern Web-standard websites. Its own portfolio is startlingly green. Aside from this neon-green page complete with fox howl, the team turns out such beautiful websites as the following:

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Galia Offri140

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Art Focus142

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Netcraft14424 does it right and sets a good standard. It is one of the leading agencies in Israel.

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It designed this well-known e-commerce website:

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Lionite147 is an Israeli agency with a unique approach148 to business.

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It also created Octabox150

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… and Cubicl152.

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Itamar Lerner154 is an Israeli-born graphic designer. He started working as a designer at 2002. In the following three years, he was employed by several design studios around Tel Aviv.

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Adam Tal181156 (a collaborator on this article) and the design agency Internetlife157 created the Gottagettofwa.com website.

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Daina Reed180159 is a freelance Web designer in Tel Aviv.

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Inbal Pinto and Avshalom Pollak Dance Company161 created this beautiful, simple and artistic Flash website, which may be impractical for most in the real world.

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Inkod Hypera163

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nucampaign165 offers great insight into the real Israel (as opposed to the Israel you know from the news).

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Illustrators

Liron Tocker167 is a talented Israeli illustrator and icon designer who lives in Germany.

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Mikimottes170 is commendable for his sketching of everyday Israeli scenery.

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Asaf Hanuka172 worked on the art for the award-winning animated documentary feature film by director Ari Folman.

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hoop174: this is just about the end of our journey. If you wish to absorb more Israeli design, you should visit hoop.

Web design in Israel - israeli design websites gallery175

You may be interested in the following related posts:

About the Authors

Daina Reed180159 is a freelance Web designer and Web project manager in Tel Aviv.

Adam Tal181156 is a Web entrepreneur who believes that code is poetry and design is music. Follow him on Twitter @adamtal182, or check out his website183.

Sara Eisen is a freelance writer, editor, journalist and “marcom” and Web content consultant. She blogs at http://the-word-well.com184.

Also, this article wouldn’t have been possible without the contributions of Joey Simhon185 and Lior Yair186 of Netcraft187, a digital agency in Tel Aviv that specializes in user experience and Web technologies. Special thanks to Avi Joseph188, CEO of SmediaC for helping with the research for this article.

(al) (dr) (at) (vf)

Footnotes

  1. 1 http://israblog.nana10.co.il/tblogread.asp?blog=387973
  2. 2 http://israblog.nana10.co.il/tblogread.asp?blog=387973
  3. 3 http://www.ynet.co.il/english/articles/0,7340,L-3702035,00.html
  4. 4 http://www.agadir.co.il/
  5. 5 http://www.agadir.co.il/
  6. 6 http://www.lionways.com/
  7. 7 http://www.lionways.com/
  8. 8 http://www.lionways.com/
  9. 9 http://www.eranpal.com/flash.htm?MainImage=16
  10. 10 http://www.eranpal.com/flash.htm?MainImage=16
  11. 11 http://vaza.co.il/project.asp?cat=Web&id=Alfred_Gallery
  12. 12 http://vaza.co.il/project.asp?cat=Web&id=Alfred_Gallery
  13. 13 http://www.towerofdavid.org.il/
  14. 14 http://www.towerofdavid.org.il/
  15. 15 http://www.lionways.com/
  16. 16 http://www.bee-creations.com/Hebrew.html
  17. 17 http://www.bee-creations.com/Hebrew.html
  18. 18 http://waltzwithbashir.com/
  19. 19 http://waltzwithbashir.com/
  20. 20 http://www.talker.co.il/
  21. 21 http://www.talker.co.il/alonuziel
  22. 22 http://www.twitter.com/alonuziel
  23. 23 http://hiddush.org/
  24. 24 http://netcraft.co.il/
  25. 25 http://www.bigdesign.co.il/cs-Confederation%20House.htm
  26. 26 http://www.bigdesign.co.il/cs-Confederation%20House.htm
  27. 27 http://www.bigdesign.co.il
  28. 28 http://soferstam.co.il/
  29. 29 http://www.ezerdesign.com/
  30. 30 http://www.ezerdesign.com/
  31. 31 http://odedezer.blogspot.com
  32. 32 http://www.ezerdesign.com/ketubah.html
  33. 33 http://www.ezerdesign.com/typosperma.html
  34. 34 http://odedezer.com/
  35. 35 http://odedezer.com/
  36. 36 http://www.fontef.com/old/
  37. 37 http://www.fontef.com/old/
  38. 38 http://hagilda.com/
  39. 39 http://hagilda.com/
  40. 40 http://www.yotamhadar.com/
  41. 41 http://www.nrg.co.il/
  42. 42 http://www.nrg.co.il/
  43. 43 http://www.hasushia.com/
  44. 44 http://www.hasushia.com/
  45. 45 http://lionite.com/
  46. 46 http://www.notes.co.il/lea/
  47. 47 http://www.go2web20.net/#tag:israel
  48. 48 http://www.ynet.co.il
  49. 49 http://www.ourbudget.org.il/
  50. 50 http://www.ourbudget.org.il/
  51. 51 http://vaza.co.il/project.asp?cat=Web&id=Dinamo-Dvash
  52. 52 http://vaza.co.il/project.asp?cat=Web&id=Dinamo-Dvash
  53. 53 http://vaza.co.il/project.asp?cat=Web&id=Alfred_Gallery
  54. 54 http://www.shatil.org.il/
  55. 55 http://www.shatil.org.il/
  56. 56 http://www.mossawacenter.org/
  57. 57 http://www.mossawacenter.org/
  58. 58 http://www.koloudtof.com/
  59. 59 http://www.koloudtof.com/
  60. 60 http://be-baboo.com/
  61. 61 http://be-baboo.com/
  62. 62 http://odedezer.com/typosperma.html
  63. 63 http://odedezer.com/typosperma.html
  64. 64 http://www.deniszilber.com/
  65. 65 http://www.deniszilber.com/
  66. 66 http://www.schlaffstunde.com/
  67. 67 http://www.schlaffstunde.com/
  68. 68 http://www.racheltimor.com/
  69. 69 http://www.racheltimor.com/
  70. 70 http://www.eladtayar.com
  71. 71 http://www.eladtayar.com
  72. 72 http://www.keoss-live.com/
  73. 73 http://www.keoss-live.com/
  74. 74 http://www.anz.co.il/
  75. 75 http://www.anz.co.il/
  76. 76 http://www.arava-k.com/
  77. 77 http://www.arava-k.com/
  78. 78 http://rubinmuseum.org.il/
  79. 79 http://rubinmuseum.org.il/
  80. 80 http://www.e-dologic.co.il/burger_ranch/2008/site/06/
  81. 81 http://www.e-dologic.co.il/burger_ranch/2008/site/06/
  82. 82 http://www.hayehudim.com/
  83. 83 http://www.hayehudim.com/
  84. 84 http://kid.org.il/
  85. 85 http://kid.org.il/
  86. 86 http://alilot.co.il/
  87. 87 http://alilot.co.il/
  88. 88 http://www.nofganim.co.il/
  89. 89 http://www.nofganim.co.il/
  90. 90 http://www.segalwines.co.il/
  91. 91 http://www.segalwines.co.il/
  92. 92 http://www.sibling.co.il/
  93. 93 http://www.sibling.co.il/
  94. 94 http://odedbabayoff.com/
  95. 95 http://odedbabayoff.com/
  96. 96 http://www.hablock.com/
  97. 97 http://www.hablock.com/
  98. 98 http://www.israelhayom.co.il/
  99. 99 http://www.israelhayom.co.il/
  100. 100 http://www.iestudio.co.il/
  101. 101 http://www.iestudio.co.il/
  102. 102 http://www.redseajazzeilat.com/en/
  103. 103 http://www.redseajazzeilat.com/en/
  104. 104 http://www.zeronine.me/
  105. 105 http://www.zeronine.me/
  106. 106 http://studiogavriel.net/Web/Web-Intro.html
  107. 107 http://studiogavriel.net/Web/Web-Intro.html
  108. 108 http://www.thekotel.org/
  109. 109 http://www.thekotel.org/
  110. 110 http://www.sipholux.co.il
  111. 111 http://www.sipholux.co.il
  112. 112 http://3bears.co.il/
  113. 113 http://3bears.co.il/
  114. 114 http://kitsh.co.il/
  115. 115 http://kitsh.co.il/
  116. 116 http://kitsh.co.il/
  117. 117 http://www.quicheria.co.il/
  118. 118 http://www.wix.com/
  119. 119 http://www.quicheria.co.il/
  120. 120 http://terrypoison.com/
  121. 121 http://terrypoison.com/
  122. 122 http://www.dudihasson.com/
  123. 123 http://www.dudihasson.com/
  124. 124 http://www.halas.am/
  125. 125 http://www.halas.am/
  126. 126 http://www.shanibar.com/
  127. 127 http://www.shanibar.com/
  128. 128 http://www.wuwa.org/
  129. 129 http://www.wuwa.org/
  130. 130 http://www.supersize.co.il/
  131. 131 http://www.supersize.co.il/
  132. 132 http://www.jcamerata.com/
  133. 133 http://www.jcamerata.com/
  134. 134 http://www.chansonim.com/he/emmanuel/
  135. 135 http://www.chansonim.com/he/emmanuel/
  136. 136 http://www.hydros.co.il/
  137. 137 http://www.hydros.co.il/
  138. 138 http://www.shual.com/
  139. 139 http://www.shual.com/
  140. 140 http://galiaoffri.com/
  141. 141 http://galiaoffri.com/
  142. 142 http://www.shual.com/artfocusorgil/
  143. 143 http://www.shual.com/artfocusorgil/
  144. 144 http://netcraft.co.il/
  145. 145 http://netcraft.co.il/
  146. 146 http://www.callperfume.co.il
  147. 147 http://www.lionite.com/
  148. 148 http://lionite.com/waytowork
  149. 149 http://www.lionite.com/
  150. 150 http://octabox.com/
  151. 151 http://octabox.com/
  152. 152 http://www.cubicl.com/
  153. 153 http://www.cubicl.com/
  154. 154 http://www.itamarlerner.com
  155. 155 http://www.itamarlerner.com
  156. 156 http://adamtal.com/
  157. 157 http://internetlife.co.il
  158. 158 http://gottagettofowa.com
  159. 159 http://dainareed.com/
  160. 160 http://dainareed.com/
  161. 161 http://www.inbalpinto.com/
  162. 162 http://www.inbalpinto.com/
  163. 163 http://inkod-hypera.com
  164. 164 http://inkod-hypera.com
  165. 165 http://nucampaign.org
  166. 166 http://nucampaign.org
  167. 167 http://liron.de
  168. 168 http://www.liron.de
  169. 169 http://www.liron.de
  170. 170 http://www.mikimottes.com/
  171. 171 http://www.mikimottes.com/
  172. 172 http://www.asafhanuka.com/
  173. 173 http://www.asafhanuka.com/
  174. 174 http://www.hoop.co.il/english/
  175. 175 http://www.hoop.co.il/english/
  176. 176 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2009/10/17/global-web-design-russia/
  177. 177 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2010/01/26/showcase-of-web-design-in-germany/
  178. 178 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2009/12/12/viva-mexico-showcase-of-web-design-in-mexico/
  179. 179 http://www.smashingmagazine.com/2009/10/23/showcase-of-web-design-in-ireland-2/
  180. 180 http://dainareed.com/
  181. 181 http://adamtal.com/
  182. 182 http://twitter.com/adamtal
  183. 183 http://adamtal.com/
  184. 184 http://the-word-well.com/
  185. 185 http://twitter.com/joeysim
  186. 186 http://twitter.com/lioryair
  187. 187 http://www.netcraft.co.il/en
  188. 188 http://twitter.com/Avinio

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  1. 1

    That “lighting boutique” site is awesome…
    Did Liron Tocker actually invented that milk character? the one featured in blur’s video? (coffee and TV)

    and I think that when people starts talking about politics it’s because they don’t have anything to say about design…

    0
  2. 102

    After reading all these posts, my biggest concern is no longer how poorly this article was thought out, but the incredibly poor grammar of everyone on this blog. Maybe you should all quit whining and designing and take a d*mn english class. :) xo

    -2
  3. 203

    This comment was deleted due to offtopic.

    0
  4. 304

    Smashing has had a number of webdesign in *country* lately.

    It is funny, because the whole.. WorldWde Web design thing.

    If you can speak english you can make a living designing for anyone, anywhere. Location is irrelevant. Breaking out of the past is what the internet is about. Embrace it.

    0
  5. 405

    great list….thanks…..

    0
  6. 506

    SM i really want to see indian website showcase…………….plz

    0
  7. 607

    pretty coll stuff! typography is a whole different issue for them!

    0
  8. 708

    Excuse me sir!
    what is the Israel Country?
    I don’t Know it
    the correct name of the mentioned country is “Palestine”

    -5
    • 809

      Ashkan means Mongo in which language?

      1
    • 910

      can’t we all just get along. ridic. focus on the design.

      2
    • 1011

      This comment was deleted due to offtopic.

      0
      • 1112

        dude its just soil – look at australia , they can protest but they dont blow themselves up. You have just shown the rest of the world how you are unable to move forward

        this is about web design not some stupid war over land , these religious people make me so mad but do make me seem a lot smarter :)

        3
      • 1213

        This comment was deleted due to offtopic.

        0
  9. 1314

    LOL! Excellent article. We have just finished making webisite for an israeli client, and EVERYTHING written here is true!

    1
  10. 1415

    Great Work by ISRAELy designers! keep on contributing for humanity! love you all!

    0
  11. 1516

    “Tel Aviv is Israel’s most urban, chic city: the capital of all things sexy, secular and spiritual (in alternative ways to traditional Judaism.)”

    Let me rephrase that for you:

    “Tel Aviv is Israel’s most uninspiring, overpopulated city: the capital of all things copied with a substantial delay secular or spiritual (The Final Solution in action.)”

    -4
  12. 1718

    Thank You so much from Israel SM you`re great !

    0
  13. 1819

    Has anyone tried to submit designs for Israeli design contests at godesign.co.il or any other sites?

    0
  14. 1920

    hey… what about this example of israeli original design with no flash!!
    http://www.marshdondurma.com

    1
  15. 2021

    does anyone see one interesting website in this showcase ??
    and all the world believe in one thing.. (( Israel doesn’t use the word “shalom” ))

    keep on smashing

    -4
    • 2122

      i wouldn’t say they are all masterpieces, but there are a few good ones.
      if you can’t see that then maybe your opinions on other matters is the problem.

      1
  16. 2223

    This is another cool one – http://dostix.com/
    There cloth are nicer then the site.

    0
  17. 2324

    in fact it is very poor designs with very poor standards with very poor servers ( take forever to load )
    [This comment was deleted due to offtopic.]

    -1
  18. 2627

    This comment was deleted due to offtopic.

    0
  19. 2728

    A post on web design in Serbia would be interesting to read here.

    -1
  20. 2829

    This comment was deleted due to offtopic.

    0
    • 2930

      HELLO ! This is smashingMagazine and not your washedOutBrainQuarantine! please behave and respect the site. Luckily there is nothing to worry about because all of you blocked ignorant users here sounded quite retarded. Your ugly and childish comments were clearly lacking of any valid facts and real knowledge of the situation. you guys go and educate yourselves, seriously.
      [deleted]
      Now, learning how to separate all that from the professional eye and mind and understanding how to allow ourselves to judge art, design or any other creation in a naked, fresh and creative way? well… GO through all the websites above and absorb amigo, absorb, oh and yeah, we know you guys stole the name from free willy.. that’s not gonna work yo ;)

      0
  21. 3031

    Really great article!
    It isn’t really true though that Flash sites are problematic – it’s all about how you create them. SEO can be implemented into a Full Flash site without any problems – you just need to know what you’re doing :)
    Check out http://www.studioumbrella.co.il – studio umbrella.
    Of course, there are so many design studios here in Israel… but another definitely won’t hurt! Thanks again!

    0
  22. 3132

    Lets tell the true… we (the Muslim people) are very violent humans…
    This is a design post, and here we are… post in a comment just to call other designers murderess and other bad words…

    your really need to be ashamed on your selfs.

    Peace for all the humans.

    4
  23. 3233

    Great Post! it’s about time.
    I know it’s kitsch but… no place like home, the colors… the letters… the all package :-)
    well done and keep…. designing.

    Ohh… check this one also http://www.elephantstudio.co.il

    0
  24. 3334

    How many “This comment was deleted due to offtopic” …!!
    Personally I don’t like these designs.

    0
  25. 3435

    I pity all the racists here slandering Israel. It only means that they are so full of hatred they can’t enjoy a simple design article. You can say you want peace as much as you want, but without opening your heart to the beautiful things in this world no peace can come.

    2
  26. 3536

    Very nice post for the Very nice webdesigner in Israel

    Toda Raba

    1
  27. 3637

    and very nice post , pleasant to read

    Toda Rabba

    1
  28. 3738

    The problem with web design in Israel is the fact that most customers don’t know or don’t really care how the website looks or feels, they just want the lowest price.
    Aside from the fact that employers, don’t really appreciate them (the pay is real bad).
    It’s such a shame because allot of talented web/graphic designers just leave the country.
    There has to be a change and fast !

    2
  29. 3839

    I am glad to see that 3 websites i have designed & build get such worldwide exposure, what a great way to start the week :) thanks,
    g

    http://www.studiogavriel.net

    p.s
    i have recently started a debate in the matter of the Israels web regulations quality and standards in cafe demarker at the following if you feel you have somthing to say you are welcome to do so –
    http://cafe.themarker.com/view.php?t=1501930

    1
  30. 3940

    It’s a great country as they take money from US citizens and use it to boost thier country, and butcher little Palestinian kids on the side. Israel is a terror state. Free Palestine.

    -1
  31. 4041

    Design is design… I like jewish designs as matter of fact, jewish did contribute a lot to art, I think the only problem with this article that the word Israel trigger an old injury between the semites Arabs and Jewish, This Showcase is showing a style coming from a group of designers touched by different cultural background live all in the same place… this is the most interessting part… politic everything has its own time and place… better than agressivity in comments can all the angry comments to be transform some how to a design and that will help to focus on the deisgn matter. Thank you

    0
  32. 4142

    Great !
    Will smashing mag come to visit webdesigners in France ?

    0
  33. 4243

    wow, great article!
    Very interesting facts!

    0
  34. 4344

    For those of you who say “would love to see that small country called Palestine again” do historic research and see if that was the original name? Who came up with it? You will find neither the people from Israel nor the people from Palestine came up with it. As far as this article goes! I love most of the items featured here. I recently visited Israel and these designers are truly talented. Good read! Thanks SM!

    0
  35. 4445

    Great article!

    Come to israel it’s the best country in the world!

    -1
  36. 4546

    Luis Miguel You forget that wan you don’t see 20% of Israel people because they are Arabic or whatever ales you give this apartheid state more crédit to do more and more crêpé dath Policy in This Holly land

    0
  37. 4647

    Don’t mean to offend the israeli’s but this one made me laugh.

    1) Clients care more about cost than usability and standards.

    Once again, didn’t mean to offend anyone.

    -1
  38. 4748

    Great blog, keeping me from working. Good to see comments about web design.

    0
  39. 4849

    Guess I am a little late on this one, however we recently relaunched our Web site and just so happen to be located in Israel (although we cater to the international community). Our site can be found at http://sixthirteendesign.com

    I would have to say, however, that the vast majority of Web industry folk here are still behind on technology and best-practices, despite the country’s reputation to be cutting-edge. Things like standards-compliant code, accessibility, and the sementic Web are almost totally overlooked here. In fact, when you scour the Web for Israeli Web sites you will find that a vast majority still favor sliced images and tables-based layouts, etc. It has been quite upsetting and something I have been really trying to help push forward at workshops and lectures, with the help of some others here, like the local W3C branch.

    Cheers,
    Akiva Levy, founder SixThirteen

    0
  40. 4950

    Hi, I’m a web designer (www.zaionwebdesign.eu) and I’m creating a web site in Hebrew/arabic/english/italian (www.genesijournal.org). I’m having problems in mixing european and hebrew’s characters, could you give me some advices about it? You know, when I try to put a word in english on the right of the hebrew’s word the system put it on the left. Or could you tell me some software that usually web designer use when they create web sites in Hebrew? Thanks

    0
  41. 5051

    I really like Agadir and Lionways websites. Can you tell me what programs were used to create these dynamic sites? Is it Flash? Thanks!

    0
  42. 5152

    בניית אתרים

    April 26, 2011 10:25 pm

    its difficult for me too to switch from right to left and vice-versa all the time

    0
  43. 5253

    Realy l m very happy that u vez great and wonderful site l like this designe and of cours Agadir Humberger ; l m so happy that u ve choose the name of the city where l live in agadir city south of morocco …

    0
  44. 5354

    Better ask where is Hooqs ;)

    0
  45. 5455

    devunity.com is a great site/tool but a it’s design in a little minimalistic, no?

    0
  46. 5556

    Pakistani Patriot

    February 23, 2010 2:13 pm

    This comment was deleted due to offtopic.

    0
  47. 5657

    This comment was deleted due to offtopic.

    0
  48. 5758

    [This comment was deleted due to offtopic.]

    but, again, this article is about webdesign, pity that some people cant just leave aside political issues and talk as simple human being, it will surly reduce hate.

    0
  49. 5859

    This comment was deleted due to offtopic.

    0
  50. 5960

    Hooqs? Is it still on-line? Could not find it… :)

    0
  51. 6061

    All Israelis do 3-5 years of military service and therefor are an very active part of the aparthied policy and masscres. What´s peaceful about that? Before they are 22 many of them are killers sanctioned by the state. Have a look at the domestic violence in Israel. Militarism is so deep into the society that peaceful will not mean the same thing in Israel.

    No wonder they all go abroad after their military service. Some never come home.

    -1
  52. 6162

    Ofcourse, any resistance towards Israel must be hatred right!
    There can be nothing else since Israel is only good, has a lovely culture and hospitality.

    This artical is not simple because you say so. That just flashes your ignorance and bias. This artical is full of touristic views that totally exclude the reality which human rights reports are full of. Masscring Gaza last year and starving it today is not a “slandering” but a fact. A fact that highlights one´s position towards human rights and dignity. Yoav, where is yours?

    Peace is a verb that Israelis for too long have used against anyone else. You don´t need to want peace all you need to do is to point at others and claim they do not want peace! Meanwhile, the ethnic cleansing goes on and articals of “sunny beaches” get published…

    -4
  53. 6263

    How can it reduce hate when Israel is reproducing hatred every day. Some days as new buildings on stolen land, other days as bombs over a closed down area but mostly as discriminationa and humilation.

    Hatred does not come from outside towards Israel. Israel is generating this hatred in its banality. Read the beginning again Yossi and tell me how it´s about webdesign and not about the touristic european flavoured Israel with a peaceloveing culture. Waiting…

    Acknowledging the state of things is the first step of reducing hatred! Surely, everyone knows this but some…

    -2
  54. 6364

    maria
    is a lost soul
    it will be ok
    maria
    dont worry.

    1
  55. 6465

    Yes you’re right. 90% of all Israel citizens did army service, including me and including designers. Except they’re leaving country looking for a job, cause local market is very small. )
    Sure we’re not so intelligent as so called Palestinians, people who afraid of their own government, cause their government using their own people’s fears to suck more and more money from a rich Arabian countries just to full pockets and send some more brainwashed children blow up in our streets. If you OK with it, I’m happy I was one of those killers. Shalom from Israel designers. )

    0

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