Today I was on the receiving end of some candid feedback from David Walker. He basically told me that my design work was poor! 🙁
I volunteered to do a website header for Daniel Madeira, one of Marc Milburn’s coaching students to help him out and I produced 6 versions of the header just to see what he liked.
Of course, because Daniel wasn’t paying, he was too polite to tell me what he really thought and thanked me.
In a moment of madness, I posted the 6 headers on my Facebook profile and asked my Facebook ‘friends’ to tell me what they thought. David was the first to reply and this is what he said,
‘Number 1 is the best of a very bad bunch (sorry, but you did ask…)’
Initially I was a little hurt by his comment but then I thought that by giving me his unvarnished opinion, he was actually doing me a huge favour. It got me thinking hard about what I could do to improve my designs.
I had two further replies to my thread which both agreed with David that my first, very simple design was the best one. A clear case of ‘less is more’ (just like ladies make-up!)
I decided to look at David Walker’s blog and discovered that his header was simply a simple piece of ordinary text with a transparent background. No graphics or logo. His blog was also very minimalist. I then realised that clean and simple was his clear preference, so I immediately produced a similar header (version 7) for Daniel.
Now Daniel has 7 headers he can choose from. It will be interesting to see which he chooses because often the beauty of design is in the eye of the beholder. You only have to look at modern art to realise that!
I am a complete self-taught amateur in the world of design and it made me realise that this is a very difficult field to enter because everyone has different tastes and opinions (thank god! – it would be very monochrome and boring if they didn’t.)
The problem with design is that it is easy to just mess around with ideas and to keep trying new stuff – it is also easy to pass into the realms of bad taste and poor aesthetics!
Also, I had very little guidance from Daniel on what he wanted (other than the text I put on the header). Without candid feedback from the ‘customer’ it is very difficult to design in isolation because, as I say, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. For example, Daniel might like seeing his handsome mugshot on the header! I just don’t know.
Here are the headers for you to see – let me know your opinions in the comment box below and if you can link to a site whose header you really like, that would be great because I like to see what designs others like, to inform my own work.
For example, do you think it is a mistake not to have his face on the header in order to make an instant connection with the blog-owner or is that a bit cheesy?
Oh, and don’t forget to be candid with your feedback because it is the only sort worth having!
#4 – this was just a piece of fun!
#7 – this has a transparent background to match the background of Daniel’s new site
Let’s really test the power of canidid feedback – please comment below with what you like dislike and prefer! (If you don’t like any of them that’s OK but it would help if you could give an example of a header you do like!)