First website: any thoughts?

  Sulis 16:13 08 Jul 2003

Apologies if this question has been asked plenty of times before! I'm looking at setting up my own personal website. I've never dabbled in web design before and I have a rudimentary (but improving) knowledge of what does what, etc. What I really want to do is set up a site that looks extremely professional, yet clean and simple, with pictures (thumbnails?) and plenty of content. I've got FrontPage 2000 but never touched it. I've also got Paint Shop Pro 7... but that's it. Given that I want sleek looks and an overall professional finish, is there anything else I need to have? Any good books that can guide me, aside from FrontPage for idiots? My main problem lies in not really understanding what FrontPage really does! Any advice, no matter how small, would be extremely welcome, and sorry for the vagueness of the questions :)

Many thanks.

  Falkyrn 17:28 08 Jul 2003

The best thing is to have a clear idea of what you want the completed site or pages to look like and most importantly (my opinion) be very clear what you want to convey to the viewers of your site. A good old fashioned pencil and pad come in handy for the intial stages ... long before you sit down at frontpage or any other program.

The more time you spend "polishing" the elements of your site the more chance you have of them looking "professional"

click here has some tutorial information on frontpage and click here has some tips on paint shop pro

  Sulis 17:33 08 Jul 2003

Thanks Falkryn. I've actually already drafted the full site out with pencil & paper, so I know what content it will have, as well as some ideas I want to incorporate in terms of the 'look'. It's just sorting out the idea into realisty, I suppose.

The links are appreciated, ta :)

  HighTower 09:36 09 Jul 2003

It's always worth seeing what other people are up to! Have a look at your favourite websites, or surf the web and pick out ones that you like and think look good. Then try and pick out what it is that makes them look good.

I find that simple is best. The most important part of web design isn't that you have Dreamweaver MX, Flash MX and Photoshop 7 and can make things zoom around a screen but rather is that your pages are a fundamentally good design, easy to navigate and quick to load. Bad sites tend to be ones with 15 different fonts (most of which won't display on another machine that doesn't have them installed) and overpowering background images which mean you can't read the text on top of it!

Start off using tables in your pages to position your web page elements. Remember that you can create a table and then inside a cell of that table you can insert text, images or even another table! Then you know that regardless of what screen resolution the viewer is viewing at your elements will be appropriately positioned.

You will be fine with Frontpage and Paint Shop Pro for now. Why not think about a night class, it may cost you £50 or so but you will probably learn more in the first night than you will in the first month of working it through on your own!

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