The Times They Are A-Changin’

Jenna Fischer flower

… well, at least a little.

Just so you know (if you’re slightly confused), whoever is in the image above has nothing to do with this post.  Hm, so why’s it there?  I’m glad you asked :).

I’m always thinking about this site – different ideas, new pages, new entries.. whatever.  After I changed to the latest Stick Man top banner image, and posted my previous Brandi Carlile entry, I visited my site and really liked what I saw.  Visually, with the blog entry image that pushed below my screen so no text was visible and with the more colorful (and solid) stick figure, I started thinking of ways in which I could continue this visual appeal.  Since you actually have to visit my site, I’d like your input on a few things:

1. No, the black-and-white isn’t going anywhere, but I have a little site addition that I have planned to add some constant photographic color to the top of the main page.  The Stick Man above is wearing a solid white face to match Kratos from the God of War games, but do you think it should stick around?  I haven’t tried it with other designs, but it adds a little more boldness to the front page… so what do ya think?

2. I add images whenever I can, but sometimes (and rather often) my blogs are just text.  At the very least, not all of my entries (save for the reviews) have images at the very TOP, and as I mentioned above… I kind of liked seeing a big chunk of a color photograph when I hit my main page, so I’ve toyed with the idea of adding an image to every entry?  Perhaps, ala Destructoid, only without the on-image text.  I don’t know if I have it in me, but it might be worth the effort.

2.5 Similarly, I’d still really love to have full-size images display when you click on them in my blog – but I’m still figuring out the best way for me to do that.

3. One of my biggest issues is integration.  There are still parts of my site that I feel are too separated from the rest – the Gallery being the major one.  Yes, this place is very archival, but how many of you actually check out the photo gallery with any regularity?  I wouldn’t either, so don’t worry.

3.5 Again, likewise, I have a ton of videos I’d love to get online and share – home movies, if you will.  Shooting a quick video with my daily camera of some friends playing video games is great… but where do I put it?  I recently discovered TubePress, which would work great – but it’s also like my photo gallery, in which it would be a separate gallery with not much of a direct connection to the main site… especially since I don’t use WordPress as my main blog.

Obviously this isn’t any matter of life and death, but I really would love to hear what any of you think, regarding new visuals and better media integration.  After all, I do all of this for you ;).

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About Mark Mushakian

Just a man who loves God, women, kids, dogs, movies, and every other lovely thing in life :)
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4 Responses to The Times They Are A-Changin’

  1. Nick says:

    I think the site could definitely use more color. I know you like the black and white but sometimes I find it a little hard on the eyes. One thing you could do (which I often do when I eventually blog) is create custom images fr your post. Quick photo shop deals to add a little spice. As for the gallery and videos, I think you could keep it the same, but add new posts telling us you have updated something and possibly have a sidebar link with thumbnails for current videos like you do for the gallery. The gallery is pretty much made up of random images, so it doesn't get many hits cause what's the purpose? I think with videos you'd get more hits. It's time for the site to have more color!

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  2. Mark says:

    All noted. You know me and brightness, so even beyond design… I like the main b/w for that reason. What makes it hard for you? I mean, is it the white on black text or more about your eyes are getting bad?

    I've definitely done a few Photoshop things before, I'm just considering having an image for every entry – make it a little more colorful and worth the while :).

    I'd REALLY like the videos and pictures to be in the same gallery, but I haven't been able to make that happen, yet. I don't know what you mean by the gallery being made up of "random images" but I definitely get why it's not frequently visited… I wouldn't either. It's there, I'm just aiming at more social interaction with everything, in general, I suppose.

    Everyone talks about more color – but what exactly do you mean? I've been looking at a number of sites lately, getting a feel for their design elements.

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  3. Mark says:

    Yes, I'm replying to my own reply. I'm ZANY in that way.

    I did have an idea, though… and it's related to light. Every other page (besides 'Papers' and 'Top Banner Animations' which just use the b/w template) has its own color scheme. They may be plain and simple, but they are colored. So, I just thought that, instead of the main page just being black-and-white, it could be an amalgam of every other page in terms of color – just like white light is the collection of every color, so shall the main page be. I'll keep the black, but perhaps the Site Links will each have a hover color similar in color to their respective page. I can also use these varying colors elsewhere on the main page – headings, blog entries, links, etc..

    Beyond the permanent color picture idea I have for the main page, what do you think of this concept?

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  4. Nick says:

    I meant the white on black text sometimes hurts my eyes a little sometimes. And I think that's a fine idea. Anything to add more interest so it's not just textapalooza 😉

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