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Throw off the straitjacket

I bang on about how graphic designers, most still trained as (and certainly by) print people, fail to grasp that graphic design for the screen is a different animal.

The number of websites that don’t have adjustable type size is evidence of that. OK, it could just be incompetence on their part. Or laziness. Or sheer ignorance.

More evidence of this is the standard layout of most sites, with a navigation bar down one side or across the top, the main image in the middle-left, and, perhaps, a column for text. Sure, there are lots of variations. And, of course, they work. But this is print design transliterated to the screen; despite the fact that magazines and books are portrait, and screens are landscape.

So it was quite uplifting to come across Dutch design studio Tjep.’s site at www.tjep.com. It’s divided into six horizontal zones which slide randomly back and forth as you enter the navigation page and finally settle. This tells you that slipping from side to side is the navigation model. And there’s not an image to be seen. Fun. So you eagerly plunge in.

Following this example, maybe your web designer could throw off their print straitjacket too.

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