Branding is very significant for any kind of product or service. We are all a certain kind of product/service ourselves and we brand ourselves everyday, with the way we talk, the clothes we wear, etc. And according to Dr. Gregory House, “We are who people think we are.”
Yesterday, we discussed personal branding and focused on how we brand our personal website.
You brand yourself and your website to get noticed, to say something unique about your personality, to personalize the website, and to display your strengths, skills, and values.
Firstly, you have to think about your brand name, as in what you will use as the title of the website: your first name, your full name, your initials, etc. Then you have to decide what to put after your name, which tells visitors what you do (art director, copywriter, graphic designer, etc.)
Personal branding can be one of the most difficult things you will have to do. (Probably a little more difficult than writing a personal statement for your CV.)
Once you have your personal brand/logo, you can apply it to your personal website, business card, blog, CV, etc.
Remember, how you brand yourself will be the representation of who you are.
In class, we looked at a number of graphic design student websites and discussed on whether the branding works or not. Here are some good and bad examples. (Click on the images to enter website.):
I personally think that this one’s beautiful. The handwriting is feminine and it adds character to the site. It also predicts the style of her work. The whole site is clean and easy to navigate.
Mark’s style is very different from Sophie’s but his website is also clean and easy to the eyes. It is also very simple and easy to navigate. I like how he sticks with the same blue color throughout the whole site. Color is pretty significant when it comes to branding. The only part I dislike is how you have to keep scrolling down to check out more information.
This website simply looks like a forum. The background looks like it’s a template he’s copied from somewhere. There is nothing there that hints that he’s a graphic designer.
When I first visited this website, I didn’t see the button at the bottom of the page due to the size of the screen. So I waited and waited for the site to finish loading. When I finally saw the button, I was confused that maybe that was a button for access from mobile phone. Once you’ve entered, things do not get better. There is no more reference to the iPhone, which is replaced by metal plates. There are a lot of mistakes due to carelessness (two “Home” buttons, for example).
The followings are examples of personal websites of some of my favorite photographers. I’ve grouped them together, since they have similar style.
Here are some examples of personal websites of illustrators/graphic designers. Notice how they implement their skills into the way they brand their website:
Andy Rudak’s personal website represents the style of his photography:
And lastly, here are some personal websites of typographers. Their design is very subtle and text-based; it doesn’t distract visitors’ attention from what they want them to see.:
This talk session really made me rethink about my personal website. I have always wanted it very clean and to focus on my work/profile than the design of the website itself. But maybe it’s a little too plain.
So I designed myself a logo:
I want to subtly show that I am interested in both visual and copy. I add a little femininity with the stroke on my name and the second part makes it look a little modern but not too modern.
After finally having my own logo, I pick a new font for my website. I wanted to use a special uncommon font, but the font only shows on computers with that particular font installed. So I picked a more common one that looks similar.
Then I applied the color orange to all the links for when the cursor hovers above them.