Whether you've been designing for years or are just starting out in the creative field, you know that first impressions can make or break your next big opportunity. In today’s digital world, it's inevitable that some of these first impressions will be online, so your website needs to do the job a smart suit and a firm handshake would do in person. You want any potential client to come away from your site with a clear understanding of the work you do — and even more important, connected to who you are as a creative professional.
Adobe® Muse™ helps all types of designers create their own memorable websites that reflect their creativity and passion. It lets you focus on your design without getting hung up on coding. Here, two recent graduates, Julie Gratz and Tyler Rice, explain how they approached creating their first websites as a way to demonstrate their design skills and reveal their personal aesthetic.
“[Adobe Muse]...allowed me to create a website that expresses my own creative style.”
When I graduated from Boston University College of Fine Arts last year, I wanted to try to be an artist and make myself known. I also knew I needed a website to help launch my career, and when a friend posted about Adobe Muse on Facebook, I decided to give it a try.
In my personal artwork I had always played around with the idea of escaping and exploring, and even created paintings about doorways to other worlds. To bring this idea to life online, I brainstormed without putting restrictions on myself. I wanted my home page to have a surreal feeling, like going down the rabbit hole in “Alice in Wonderland” and escaping into a new virtual world, if only for a few moments.
I started the design with photographs I had taken in England of striking doors, placing them into an Adobe Photoshop® file, in a layer on top of a background of an inviting garden. To make the doors appear as if they were actually placed in the garden, I rearranged some the leaves and greenery and added shadows to the doors. Next, I used my tablet to sketch outlines of the doors. I used the rough sketches layered over the real doors to create interactive buttons in Muse.
The result is that my home page provides a threshold that visitors can cross to explore all the forms of my artwork. Visitors enter one door for graphic design, one for fine art, another for photography, and so on. All the doors are set in a lush garden with twisted tree trunks and flowers. I love working with color, surreal elements, and natural and organic themes, so anything less conceptual just wouldn't have made sense for me or for showcasing my artwork.
Muse has been inspiring to work with because it allowed me to create a website that expresses my own creative style. I hope the main thing potential clients take away from this website is a sense of my creativity and imagination.
“[Adobe Muse] enabled me to publish a website that matches my passion for motion design and visual experiences.”
I have a degree in radio, television, and film from the University of Texas at Austin, so while I know about video design and production, I'm not as knowledgeable about web development. I work as a motion graphics artist and video editor and wanted a portfolio site that would convey, in a single glimpse, the caliber of my work and my visual sensibilities.
I started designing my site in Photoshop a long time ago but couldn't find anyone to code it for me. From the beginning, I knew I wanted my home page design to be something fun, humorous, and curiously evocative. I also wanted it to be playful, yet simple to navigate.
I decided to try Adobe Muse and found that my site translated perfectly. Muse also worked beautifully with my other design programs, so it kept me right in my creative element. It enabled me to publish a website that matches my passion for motion design and visual experiences.
I've always liked the idea of mixing old ephemera with quirky digital movement, so I approached my home page as an interactive collage. I juxtaposed old, new, and unexpected elements and gave them a highly tactile look. While suspended over a mock New York City skyline with a watercolor background, a flapper kicks her leg as she beckons visitors to explore my video work. A pilgrim woman gazes somberly into the distance, ready to convey my contact information. A woman in a circa 1920s swimsuit smiles broadly, welcoming site visitors to learn more. I had a very specific idea of what I wanted my site to be and Muse helped me bring it to life. I really couldn't ask for more.