Monday, 18 January 2010

Competitive Analysis of a Student Online Portfolio.

www.beakable.com

As I wasn’t sure where to start looking for student website portfolios I started with Wakefield College graduates. However I couldn’t find many sites even though I thought they’d be the obvious choices.

The one that caught my eye was a friendly looking site by a ‘Web Development’ student at Glasgow.

The first impression of this site was that as well as being quite quirky and original it was also very clear to read, having well spaced out text and containing an appropriate amount of information on each page.

The Website uses a common layout throughout its four pages, having a common banner which stretches across the whole page. This adds to the Repetition of the overall website.

The background imagery of the website uses a mottled pale blue paper effect which blends into the header image, which is slightly darker and has more detail.

The background image spreads across the whole screen and is repeated, although this is not obvious at first glance.

The main content area of the website is centred on the screen. There is no obvious grid structure to the web pages, although it seems to be based on a simple two-column structure which is adequate for the site.

The overall website comes across as being fresh and energetic, with the content of the text being very positive about the author’s work and experience.

The Home page has horizontal links along the top part of the web page in a fairly standard position, followed by a very obvious introduction in large text briefly telling the user about who the author is.

Underneath the introduction is a box containing more detailed information. This box can be scrolled by clicking on a button just underneath it, however it is not a very obvious link and looks more like a background graphic, being a pale pink colour. I would prefer it to have some text instructing the viewer to use it, or also have the button as a stronger image to make it stand out.

Once clicked the box shows a sample of previous work, and provides more detail about his professional background.

The Portfolio page is nicely presented, continuing with the friendly fun theme as two image links to his recent work are displayed as notice board images on scrap paper. One link is for Website work and the other for Flash work.

In the website's portfolio the links show a screenshot of the website design, rather than taking you to the actual site. An ‘info’ tag then provides some background to each of the projects. It is very clear to follow and has an appropriate amount of information for each project.

The Projects page has some of the author's Photoshop and Flash work; and although in itself the digital artwork is not very impressive, it does show a high level of competence in Flash.

The Contact page has a fairly basic feedback form with some background graphics added to it to give the impression of a letter and envelope. This also fits in with the quirkiness of the overall website.

The Blog page is the final page containing posts about the author’s college course and his professional work, and written in a casual yet semi-professional manner.

1 comment:

iain said...

Hi John,

just stumbled across this when doing a little Google on my domain. Many thanks for the comments, it was great to read your opinion on my portfolio site.

Maybe tomorrow I will rethink the the box on the Home page with the scroll button.

:)

Hope your HND is going well,

Regards,

Iain