We use ad-blockers as well, you know. We gotta keep those servers running though. Did you know that we publish useful books and run friendly conferences — crafted for pros like yourself? E.g. upcoming SmashingConf New York, dedicated to smart front-end techniques and design patterns.
Check out all of the posts in ‘Inspiration’ below. If you still can't find what you are looking for, try searching using the form at the top of the page.
The time has come for the first showcase of music night club websites here on Smashing Magazine. We've scanned the Web up and down to find the most original and interesting online club identities. As usual, we have Flash websites and CSS eye candy. Please notice that the aim of the post was to showcase current web designs of music night clubs, so the gallery doesn't necessarily showcase most usable or most beautiful night club web designs out there.
As we observed in the early Showcase of Fresh and Well-Designed Online Shops, the most obvious trend is the use of big bold pictures, either as backgrounds, headers or just side graphic elements thrown in the design mix. Most of them start playing music automatically (which is extremely annoying from the usability point of view), but in this case it's not weird or off-putting because they are music club websites after all.
Another trend is the use of bright, vivid colors and intense color schemes, borrowed from the clubs themselves. Also, Flash clearly dominates in such web-sites, presenting some very unconventional navigation menus and very distinctive layouts that aren't intuitive at all at the first glance.
The horizontal navigation menu has become a mainstay in Web design. It is safe to say that nowadays most websites use some form of horizontal navigation to facilitate content browsing. The dominance of horizontal navigation over vertical (i.e. down a sidebar) is obviously due to the design and content limitations of the latter. Notably, CNN discovered those limitations before switching from vertical to horizontal a few years back.
There are, however, many styles of horizontal navigation in modern Web design. Some offer usability advantages for certain types of websites, while others are aesthetically better. In this article, we will focus on a variety of techniques and best practices to improve the usability of horizontal navigation bars, and we will note less effective styles. We'll also look at several trends that developers can choose from when working on the navigation design for their next project.
In this article we'll take a look at designing websites from a quite different perspective. We'll discuss some pearls of samurai wisdom from the book “Hagakure” by Yamamoto Tsunetomo and we'll learn to apply them to our Web-based, computer-bound Western life to become true samurai designers. We'll also get to know impressive examples of artworks that exhibit the samurai approach.
“Hagakure” (In the shadow of the leaves) is a collection of writings compiling the narrations of the samurai Yamamoto Tsunetomo (1659-1719), who in his late years retired from his occupation and, as a hermit, recounted the wisdom of his warrior caste. Largely unknown for centuries, Hagakure became prominent in the 1930s and is considered today one of the most authoritative sources on the ethics of the samurai.
E-Commerce websites are often thought of as typically being unattractive or poorly designed. In this post we will feature 35 appealing designs of online shops. Those featured in this post include examples from a variety of different industries and showcase several different styles of design.
Throughout this showcase the most noticeable trend of well-designed e-commerce sites is the use of high-quality photos. Many of the sites use large images on the homepage, and product and model photography is always important for creating interest from visitors.
You may also be interested in these other posts from Smashing Magazine:
The websites of TV shows are intended to generate interest in the show to improve ratings, and to provide information about the show (and sometimes past episodes) for those people who are already fans of the show. To accomplish this they attempt to create an attractive, interactive website that appeals to visitors.
As you browse through the sites that are featured in this showcase, here are some of the trends that you may notice. Many, but not all, websites of TV shows are located on the networks domain. This helps to unify the websites of the various shows on the network and can even help visitors of the site to remember what network a particular show is on.
Styles in design are described and classified in many ways. Sometimes they are given a moniker, like "Web 2.0," other times they are referred to by their appearance: grungy, minimalist, retro, big type. The people (and brands) to which modern design styles are attributed are as numerous as the styles themselves. Many designers look to a brand such as Apple as an example of great modern design because a designer's sensibility is infused into everything it does.
Even though many current styles and trends can be connected to recent design pieces, they do not originate there. So much modern design originated before computers and the Web were even a glimmer in the eye of their creators.
Looking back and drawing inspiration from very early graphic and print design is a current trend nowadays, but that is not the beginning of the story. As you go further back, you'll find groundbreaking design decades, even a century, ago. In this article we’ll explore inspirational paintings and artists who have influenced modern design. In reading this article, you will see some true evolution in design.
Some of the best festivals and conferences of the year are gone by now, but if we'd just want to judge them by their online presence we can do it from the comfort of our couch. There was some research involved in this article, you wouldn't believe it how many of the biggest events in the world have so flat and unexciting websites. However, we've finally managed to find quite a few cool ones, so we wish you a pleasant and inspirational journey.
In this post we present some of the beautiful, original and inspirational web designs of festivals and conferences that took place or are going to take place this year. Please feel free to add links to further designs in the comments to this post!
Even if you're an experienced Web developer, your next project doesn't have to be a website. Sometimes doing something outside of the usual Web developer's box is more fun and can even be educational. We'll try here to give you some inspiration on what to do on your next rainy day.
You can learn a lot by doing something other than building or designing a website. And if you stick with techniques that you can learn in a couple hours, you won't burden yourself either.
As a Web developer, you have to constantly summon creativity and empathize with users. If you have a natural flare for design and usability, that's great. But our work can sometimes become inflexible and boring. We can lose our enthusiasm to try new things. To avoid this trap, we can strive to gain new insight by putting our common tools aside and exploring projects beyond the Web developer's usual environment.
The most interesting thing we like about art is that it is independent of any medium; an artist can express himself without any limitations or restrictions by creating a wonderful and creative piece of art. A creative artist can come up with an inspirational and motivational thought and put that in their artwork in such a way that it becomes a masterpiece that dazzles our mind.
In this post we present some amazing examples of Code Generated, Algorithmic Abstract Artworks and CG Artworks. There are some really interesting platforms and libraries; by using them, artists can create unusual artworks. Most popular among these libraries are Flash Scripting, Generator.x, Processing (Java Based), openFrameworks (C Based) and for creating CG Art, artists are often using 3D Max, Maya, Zbrush, V Ray, Photoshop etc.
Hopefully, you’ll love them and will find them creative or inspirational. Please explore the further works of the artists linked below and also feel free to suggest other artworks in the comments to this post.