Design Like a Sushi Chef!
Many web designs tend to easily steer towards flashy, animated, look-at-this-cool-effect design that shows a great looking impress-the-pants-off visitors overall look. This is a great way to show off all the design tools a designer may have at their disposal. It becomes a problem when it has no positive effect on the overall message or design objective which could be to sell a product, explain a solution to a problem, raise awareness of an issue or promote a subject etc. It can also tend to overcompensate a lack of understanding of basic design elements and rules that must go into every web design project. Even worse is if the strong animations are a distraction from the overall goal of the website. Basic ingredients used in the right way for any web design can ensure a successful desired outcome that the website owner wants. One way to do this is to design like a sushi chef!
No matter how skilled a chef you are, if the ingredients are not good; fresh and used in the right combination, the results are not going to turn out very well. The same goes for web design. Using unoriginal photos, design layouts that have been done before and layering and layouts that are hard to navigate or don’t flow with the rest of the page and site will prove troublesome in several ways. The best sushi is used with fresh ingredients. Not all sushi looks the same either even though very few ingredients are used in a lot of cases. The layering and layout of web design are also just as important in sushi. There is a reason why the main page starts in a certain way as you scroll down. As with sushi, you don’t always start with any random fish. There is a beginning, middle, and end to a course.
Layout and presentation are vital or it will stumble and fall apart.
A bright red salmon will get attention first. A whiter fish can be decorated with other ingredients if needed so it doesn’t get lost amongst all the brighter colors on the same plate. A color palette is one of the most important things to consider in any design as the wrong color palette can offset the entire design, creating a mood that doesn’t fit in with the topic or theme of the site. If sushi had fish hidden inside the rice, most people would walk right by it! (Rolled sushi is a cheaper way to mass produce sushi.) The bright colors of the fish get your attention right away and they are all laid out beautifully, especially in each individual piece.
A presentation has to flow smoothly with both or it will stumble and fall apart. Using each ingredient either be it sushi or web design needs to be fresh and used in a unique way especially with web design or it will end up unoriginal which is what you don’t want your website to end up like. Sushi is simple and web design can be simple as well while still creating an attractive look. Neither need be complicated. It’s knowing how to use those few important ingredients well together that creates a great presentation. Sushi is not cluttered, does not have too many layers nor is it overly complex. Many web designs tend to forget this and try to add too much on a page and try to “say” too much all at once. The flashy animation can in some cases certainly increase this problem. Simpler ideas are in many cases the best way to go about a site design.
Using the correct color palette with original photos, the proper layout and few distractions can do wonders in getting the site visitors to know what the site topic is about, why the site exists and what the site can do for that visitor at that time. This will also help significantly with mobile design as with the limited screen space, the animations in most all cases won’t even work and be even more of a hindrance to the overall message.
Some animated sections can be a great tool in drawing attention to a message but are very easy to overuse and bombard the visitor with too much at once, (especially as the first thing they see on the main page.) Sushi never does this, especially with taste. Too many different tastes at the same time cause the whole experience to get too complicated resulting in not being able to taste anything really well, but everything just at a mediocre level. Trying to show everything on a website too soon also creates a mediocre “viewing” experience.
As with general graphic design, layout and presentation are vital. Get that wrong and you end up with a non-user friendly design. Layouts are done a certain way for a reason and they are not at all random. Even a great photo of a meal can do wonders. Ugly looking photos on a menu won’t leave much of a good (and appetizing) impression for anyone while walking by. Same for website design presentation. One quick look and it’s going to end up with a website with a high bounce rate and not many return visitors “walking” by.