For my second peer review, I had the pleasure of taking a look at Kianna’s pop culture opinion based blog, Friday’s with Frosty, which you can take a look at here: http://fridayswithfrosty.com. As opposed to focusing on website development for this peer review, I am going to be analyzing the design choices that Kianna has made so far and the overall look of her website, so let’s get started!
One of the first things I noticed about Kianna’s home page is that her menu and navigation bar are located to the left hand side of the page, as opposed to along the top like we typically see with most websites. I was unfamiliar with this design template as I don’t recall visiting many other websites with a similar style, so this was a nice touch that made Kianna’s site very unique. Along with this design template, my eyes were also directly taken to the creative featured logo on the website that helps set a fun and personal feel to the home page. Creating an original logo for your website is not easy, but I think Kianna did a great job with her design as it captures the theme and tone for her website. The featured image/logo is also a good use of color, and an example of how color has the ability to direct where our (the viewers) attention goes. The font of the writing within the logo is also a good way to express the tone of the blog, as it is more playful and fun than the standard, more professional font styles; aiding the tone of the blog.
With this being said, after listening to guest speaker Mauve Page, who came into our class a couple of weeks ago, Kianna may want to consider working on the balance between white space and images/color on her site. Right now, white space is dominant on the home page, with the Friday’s with Frosty logo being the primary source of color. After reading Kianna’s about page and posts, she seems very personable, genuine, and honest. The addition of more color on the site such as along borders, or even within text (like adding color to “Hot Takes From A Teenage Diva!” for example), will allow for her personality to be more visible throughout her website.
In Victor Kaptelinins’, Affordances: The Encyclopedia of Human – Computer Interaction, he emphasizes that good designs are intuitive. Intuitive design is invisible to users, but is crucial to demanding where their attention goes, as well as how they perceive the website. “Great intuitive designs are those that allow us directly, and correctly, to see what we can do with a thing” (Kaptelinin, 2012). In this case, to decide whether or not a website is intuitive I can ask myself, “does the website directly show and allow me to find what I am looking for?,” as well as “is the site easy to navigate and understand?.” So far, Kianna has done a good job of designing an intuitive site. When you first open the website, the navigation bar on the side has clear menus and submenus that allow for Kianna’s website and its features to be organized, as well as easily accessible for users. Sometimes websites can be complicated for users to navigate as the web designer does not keep their audience in mind and the potential skills as well as the level of familiarity they may have with exploring websites. Kianna keeps her audience in mind and uses effective, minimalistic features on her website that makes navigation clear and direct, which users/visitors of the site will appreciate.
The overall movement of the home page for Friday’s with Frosty so far has been developed well. One thing I noticed however is that all of the posts Kianna has made appear on the home page, resulting in a very stretched page that scrolls down quite far. An idea might be to add a feature that shows the most recent posts (if that is possible), as that will greatly reduce the length of the homepage and will help keep the site well organized.
Lastly, something that I think Kianna has done really well that I have yet to add to my website, is integrating her social media onto her page. The easiest way to find her social media links is on her about page. This is a great space to incorporate this feature as it feels as if the Instagram links are acting as an additional “about me” detail, that allows viewers to learn more about her. I also enjoyed the post that talked about the dilemma Kianna faced as to whether or not she wanted to add her social media to her website. I can relate to the hesitation she felt (hence why I have yet to add social media links to my website), and I really admire her willingness to step out of her comfort zone in this regard.
Overall, I really enjoyed taking a look at Friday’s with Frosty, and if you are looking for a place to explore and share opinions on the latest pop culture drama, this is the site for you! I look forward to seeing the design and overall development of Kianna’s blog progress through the rest of the semester, and I admire the work she has done so far!