Extra Hours of Design

No complaints so please don’t read this as a moan just a vent 😉

Is it a by-product of design in the modern age that’s watered down by online bidding and overseas outsourcing, but margins are less and clients are looking to pay a lot less for a lot more so when constant contract work is available you take it especially in the current economic climate.

Getting the contract work on a guaranteed long term scale is great but then when new clients and old all come online at the same time wanting work yesterday it means working evenings and the scorn of the wife :-O

Mustn’t grumble it’s all good just thought I’d blog for a change rather than tweet.



SEO is great but not at the expense of the Brand?

Okay, to cut a long story short I’m a designer, I specialise in design predominantly branding but also over the years now code, build content managed websites along with the more traditional marketing. I also offer full SEO solutions.

In a conversation the other day with an SEO ‘specialist’ I was interested by his approach? To gloss over a situation he works in-house for a web company who predominantly run in-house projects but he does get involved with the odd customer but never delves into any other form of marketing but online.

The opinion was that the only thing that should be considered at the start of a web project is the SEO and all other elements should fit that.

My argument being that if that were so we would end up with a design industry comparable to a template era as there would be a finite design layout that Google liked the most, that be the layout that has the largest SEO footprint, the result being the one that everyone would use.

I then brought up the what about design question to which it was simple you just make that fit the SEO, okay I can see his thinking but that’s okay if you work inside a bubble of a brand that has been built that way from its conception?

So I broached the question … A large corporate comes along with a strong internationally recognised brand accompanied by it strict brand bible wanting a new website, good accessibility, and of course great SEO, me being a designer sees this as simple, I produce the design to the best of my ability within the brief taking into account elements of Optimisation with the SEO being added to its upmost once the design is signed off.

His opinion was no, start with the SEO and do the design as best you can within the optimisation framework as that’s what’s important?

Brand > Design > Optimisation

Optimisation > Design > Brand

Just a quick summary of an interesting chat which I’m sure happens a lot these day but it does raise interesting questions?

Who is right? I would argue myself but in a rapidly changing online landscape is the SEO Guru the man to lead?

Walking down the high street now seeing empty shops in still busy towns I agree with some is a sign of e commerce and online savings, I know shop owners who have closed down as they could not compete online or off with web wholesalers.

Getting you products online is key to success now, getting found is a fundamental part of this, but once there the design has to engage, and is a brand that in the past stuck so rigidly to its brand bible now okay to be forced to be flexible?

John Whalvin
Creative Director


Design it’s what human does

New website launch www.designitswhathumandoes.co.uk

At first glance an eclectic jumble but did deeper, not very deep to be honest you will find a simple site containing a new brand and some great Volkswagen related unofficial merchandise.

A number if t-shirts produced to a high quality branded human (with a vertical twist) and the main brand subtly added. Add to this mousemats both left and right handed, a variety of messenger bags, iPad sleeves, iPhone sleeves plus a coffee mug and what you see is the conception of a new brand, okay it’s early doors and starting small but Rome wasn’t built in a day 🙂

Don’t submit your website to any search engines

There was a time when the belief was to submit to search engines, following the free submit link on Google and slowly but surely inputting every address and description, when the truth is just linking the sites from an already listed website is enough. Google when crawling starts at the beginning and ends at the end following every link it comes accross to it’s conclusion and if your site is linked from others it will get crawled. The crawlers don’t stop to jump over to brand new existing site just because a free submit occured, read link below for more:




Germany warns against the use of IE

Germany have come out and warned the population not to use Microsoft Internet Explorer as there search browser amid fears that it is not secure. This is after Microsoft admitted that IE was the weakest link in the China situation recently and the explanation of how to access via IE was posted on the web. There is a planned patch for the security risk but it is not ready yet so you will have to make your own mind up.

I for one downloaded the latest version of IE a while back to update testing platforms and had no end of problems with stability so took a step back to the last version.

the whole article on the BBC:


visit us at www.Designvent.co.uk

Website Design is like baking a cake!

When people say to me ah, your a web designer I get offended, sorry if that offends web designers but I am a graphic designer who does both print and web and approaches both the same way!

I was recently on a forum I frequent, vehicle related not design but someone asked “does anyone know a web designer”, I did not respond as the guys on this forum moan enough and I need that like a hole in the head but i did follow the thread with some interest, just from a point of Market research let’s say.

The question was followed by about 20 responses saying “go here” “go there” but all said one thing ‘templates”. Now I have no problem with templates, they are nicely designed and allow a lot of people an ‘in’ to Internet existence but from a company presence point of view spending a few quid is worth it, the one that did amuse me was the one from the only other designer I know said forum who said,

“I have designed a few sites don’t know how to build them but . . . . “,

Ifelt like replying with “I have sketched a few pictures of a chocolate cake, don’t know how to bake one but . . . “,

the trouble is everyone knows someone who can build a website or knows someone who’s dads brothers aunts mechanics son can!

If I wanted to bake a good cake I would ask someone who could make a good cake or buy a Delian smith book – a designer,

if I wanted to just get something quick that would ‘do’ I would get a pre-mixed packet add water and go – a template,

what I would not do is ask my mate down the pub who has heard his mum talk about making cakes once, the ones suggesting templates.

Listen to Delia Smith and have a cake worthwhile of your tastebuds!