earlier this week, i wrote about some common design mistakes bloggers make. the post received some great feedback + there were a lot of great discussions happening within the comments. since the post went up on monday, i’ve had a quite few people ask me if i could take a look at their blogs + give them a critique. that’s when the idea hit me.. why not start a blog critique series on the blog?
so here’s what’s going to happen.. every thursday, i will pick one blog to critique. critiques will include discussing any design flaws, as well as technical issues, such as not having all proper contact information above fold or having a confusion navigation. after pointing out some of the flaws, i will give suggestions, list resources + give the blogger some ‘homework’ to do in order to bring their blog up a notch.
because in my head, i’m like.. the fake gordon ramsay of the design world..
i’d love to check up on some of the blogs critiqued + do a revisit post where we see if after having their blog critiqued help with their traffic, views or whatever problems they may have been dealing with before. sounds cool right? would you like to get in on this?
how to submit your blog for a design critique:
send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org with your name, blog URL, category of your blog, how long you’ve been blogging + why you feel your blog is in need of a critique.
it’s that simple. i will pick a new blog to critique on sundays + send a reply email to the blogger letting them know they can expect a post for the upcoming week. i will also try to schedule some critiques in advanced, so you may get an email from me letting you know which thursday your critique will go up. if i’m noticing there are more blogs coming in, i may do two critiques a week. but for the time being, i’d like to focus on one blog at a time. it’s like art school all over.
is this blog design critique something you think you’d be interested in?
evernote is probably the best note-taking app out right now. it’s available for iphone, ipad, desktops + even android users can get in on this. it’s an easy-to-use app that helps you remember everything across all of the devices you use. it allows you to take notes, capture pictures, create to-do list, clip articles from the web, record voice reminders, etc. you can find things fast since you’re able to search for things via keyword, tag or even printed + handwritten text inside images. to top it all off, the app is free. yes, you heard me. free. you have the option of signing up for a free account or premium.
with a premium account, you’re given a few more features such as your month uploads boosting to 1GB each month, or being able to collaborate on notes with other people. most will be just fine with the free version, but those interested in upgrading to premium it’s $45 per year or $5 a month.
how i use evernote:
i literally use evernote for everythang.
with evernote, you’re able to make notebooks upon notebooks upon notebooks. i have individual notebooks for both my blogs, PartyOverHair.com + this one, a notebook for my For The Naturals event series, a ‘digital moleksine’ in which i’ll have random notes, ideas, sites that inspire + web clippings and of course, a recipe notebook. being both a moleskine + evernote feen, i also have the evernote moleskine in which i’ll write notes, take a picture + store them in my ‘digital moleskine’ notebook.
as you know by now, im a designer.
i live + breathe design.. well, no.. i live + breathe good design, exceptional design even.
art school has trained my eyes to look at something + instantly see the good in the design, or more times than most, the bad. my eyes can pick up when something isn’t kerned (kerning: (v.) adjusting the spacing between letters or characters.) properly, or when something is off by a pixel or two. being this nit picky about design would of course cross over into me being ridiculously nit picky about blog design.
usually when i find a new blog, the first five seconds of landing on the page will determine if your blog makes my subscription reader or gets lost amongst the interwebs. i guess in this instance.. we can say i judge a book by it’s cover. *hangs head in shame.. kinda.*
if it’s not aesthetically in pleasing for my taste, i probably will leave if the content isn’t that interesting.. if it’s well designed, it gets added to the reader regardless the content. so here are my top five reasons i’d leave your site in a hurry:
you have music on autoplay.
not to mention, you don’t have the control options above the fold.
no matter what music is playing, i came on your site to read.. not be distracted by what you currently like to listen to. if you really want me to listen, make a music playlist post. you’ve then got my ear.