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Showing 1-6 of 6 reviews(1 star). Show all reviews
on June 7, 2002
A promising idea : find common design themes from the best of the net and provide a portfolio of design ideas for each. Unfortunately, this book entirely fails to deliver on all counts.
For each of the ten arbitrarily chosen 'styles' Mr. Cloninger has picked, he provides only *very* few examples of each. This is meant to be a book with a wealth of inspirational ideas? -- what are we meant to be looking at? Of the pages with ANY pictures on at all, most have a SINGLE screengrab PER PAGE! As most chapters only discuss a small handful of sites many of these images are from the same site too.
The choice of examples is suspect too, the design of some of them is just terrible. Others like MTV2, have been in every web publication since well before their launch. The consideration of just how Form is to complement/bow to/mostly ignore Function is an integral part of every web design but, when wanting VISUAL design ideas I just really dont need to see screenshots of Jakob Nielsen's site.
Too many of his styles, for example "Pixelated Punk" and "Gothic Organic" have little commercial use. Others, like the "Mondrian Poster" style, are so profuse that it would have been of more creative use to show those who break as well as make the rule.
The design of the book itself is terrible(although the cover itself is great). The text is oversize and pads out the book, the layout is unimaginative and practically the same every page. Original ideas are few and techniques we are tutored with are of the level of tiling background images and pattern-filling in Photoshop.
I fail to see where the use of this book may be, perhaps, to a web/design novice wanting to make their first homepage.
Eye-candy from the Underground? I really don't think so. Not inspiring...
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on September 25, 2002
This book is completely useless for a serious web designer. Completely misguided from an aestetics point of view, this book doesn't go further than a pseudo-analysis of design style. Even the "techniques" section is really a couple of "how to copy this" advice, nothing deeper or broader.
The novice won't find anything to grasp the essentials or fundamentals of what design really is (or a particular "style" for that matter), the pro will find this useless. Don't even think about usability of cource.
There is much more to design than this book suggests and certainly freshness doesn't come from copying a style bound to be trivial in a couple of months but from analysing and deepening in what design for web is.
If you come from a design background you are already well equiped so, look for something on usability rather.
If you are a novice avoid this copycat approach to design and look for something on the fundamentals.
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on September 2, 2003
You CAN judge a book by its cover artwork. Yes, the cover art is supposed to make one think of Seattle grunge, but undoubtedly it also will remind you of what that refrigerator must smell like. Nice pictures, nice layout, nice presentation, but pretty much useless if you want realistic ideas that you can use, let alone implement, in the corporate world (and BTW, the corporate world does extend to rockers like the Stones). If you really want to take a look at the book, go down to your nearest Big Box bricks-n-mortar storefront and thumb through it there.
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on December 17, 2002
As a web designer I look for visual inspiration for fresh ideas. I don't need a bunch of wordy analytical explanations to know what looks nice, so this book was disappointing to me. If you're interested in that stuff, the book may be useful... but if you're like me and just need something to spark the creativity, I would not suggest this book-- there are minimal visual examples. Instead, I would recommend "[...]" by Roger Pring, and "Web Design Basics" by Glenn Fleishman. Both offer pages and pages of great visual examples to inspire you.
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on December 15, 2001
I must say that I am severly disapointed that a "web designer" can come in and try to categorize web design "styles".
Foolish names like "Paper Bag" and "70's punk rock"..... This guy made this book for kids who cracked photoshop and dreamweaver and want to make a site that has had thought put into it.
shame on him and anyone who follows this book as some sort of refrence for style...this book makes me sick. bad bad new riders...just bad.
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on April 10, 2002
Eye Candy from the Underground was first a site, loosely categorized collection of links. And it was great.
But the book disappoints. It's small and flimsy and hurts the graphics and visual effects it's supposed to be about.
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