Website Mistake: Wall of Text

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Walls of text are long paragraphs that aren’t written, edited, or formatted to be readable on the web. Some particularly egregious walls of text don’t even bother with the paragraph breaks. Why is this important?

A wall of text just might turn away a visitor before they have a chance to become a reader.

Why Walls of Text Don’t Work

Reading on the web isn’t at all like reading in print. When people come to your website they are researching, they are impatient and distracted and therefore tend to skim page content.

Ask yourself how many times you skimmed a whole page scrolling quickly by then scroll back to content that seemed the most interesting. Why are we doing this; because skimming is saving time.

While the goal of a large paragraph is to inform readers, it often has the opposite effect. No matter how enticing or interesting the topic is, readers will lose their focus if the text isn’t legible.

7 Ways To Avoid Walls Of Text

  1. Narrow the column – The optimal line length for your body text is considered to be 50-60 characters per line, including spaces (“Typographie”, E. Ruder). Other sources suggest that up to 75 characters is acceptable. So what’s the downsides of violating this range?
    Too wide – if a line of text is too long the reader’s eyes will have a hard time focusing on the text. This is because the line length makes it difficult to gauge where the line starts and ends. Furthermore it can be difficult to continue onto the correct line in large blocks of text.
    Too narrow – if a line is too short the eye will have to travel back too often, breaking the reader’s rhythm. Too short lines also tend to stress readers, making them begin on the next line before finishing the current one (hence skipping potentially important words).
     
  2. Use Headings and Subheadings – Use headings and subheadings to divide content into scannable blocks; both Google and your visitor will like it.  Headings can serve as resting points for a website visitor’s eyes and can also summarize what a page of content is about. Headings help website users to grasp the main topics of a long post. As mentioned, users might scan your post as well and why not make that as easy as possible?
     
  3. Use Visuals – Break content with engaging images. Use images that helps you tell the story. Avoid using stock images, study shows that a significant drop off in continued reading when stock photos are used. You may also use visualized data like graphs or icons to break up content.
     
  4. Use lists – List are useful tools in the breaking up long paragraphs of contents.  Break up long, content-heavy a paragraphs to make your page easier to scan use bulleted and numbered list break up on contents.
     
  5. Use shorter sentences and paragraphs – Short paragraphs encourage reading.Use shorter paragraphs because there is a higher chance that readers will finish article, from first to last paragraph.
     
  6.  Use blockquotes – Blockquotes can break the monotony of paragraph after paragraph.
     
  7. Use the right font – Bolding words, statements, or sentences, when used in moderation, can give the eye another place to rest and provide emphasis. But unlike bolded text, italicized text can be difficult to read and should be avoided. Try using bigger font sizes, most websites are using body text that is 16px or bigger.

Break up the monotony of your story and readers will stick around for the entirety of your written post.

What do you think? Have you been making the mistake of presenting your written website copy as a wall of text? Or have you picked up on the text formatting styles of the modern web?

 

 

Embroidered Bird Pins by Paulina Bartnik

Warsaw-based embroidery artist Paulina Bartnik stitches amazing lifelike brooches of birds and other tiny creatures. Put the bird on it!

Forests Cut into Vehicles and Street Signage by Dan Rawlings

Artist Dan Rawlings creates intricate trees cut into an old silo or ferns that sprout from rusty street signage.

“I try to create images that remind people of the moments when everything seems possible and free,” says Rawlings, “times when climbing a tree, or sitting admiring the way its branches twist and curl means nothing, but means everything.”

You can see more of Rawling’s work on Instagram and in his online gallery.

 

Breathtaking Landscape Photography of Indonesia

Breathtaking landscape photography of Indonesia by Hengki Koentjoro will put you in most calming mood just by looking at them

 

How to Make Your Own Graphics with Canva

A lot of my clients love the graphics, images, I create for their website, social media posts, blogs… They also know the benefit of hiring me to create their website.

But if you like to do DIY small stuff on your own and save money meet Canva. Canva is “amazingly simple graphic design software” and it’s super easy to learn. You can add your own brand colors, logos, choose from stock photography or upload your own photos.

In the following tutorial I will show you how to create Instagram post for a workshop. You can use this as a guide to create all sorts of other kind of graphics.

Let’s get started:

1. Create your Canva account, easy peasy.

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2. After logging in we will be presented with few different templates we can choose from. 

 

3. For our design we are going to use Instagram Post. Click on “Create a design”. Choose IG post under Soc. Media Posts.

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4. Here we are presented with blank canvas on the right and “toolbar” on the left.

 

5. Let’s start adding by adding background to our design. Under elements select Free Photos (There’s option to upload your own images).  `

 

6. Next click on shapes and select rectangle. Here we can change rectangle color, transparency, and size. Feel free to play around.

 

7. Time to add text. For this tutorial I used workshop info from Yoga Tree in San Francisco. We can change text color, font, text or font spacing. For our design I used Playfair Display for heading and Raleway for subheading and body text.

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Quite big font collection. Check out help section for font combinations.

Quite big font collection. Check out help section for font combinations.

Adjust font here.

Adjust font here.

Use your brand colors or custom colors.

Use your brand colors or custom colors.

Letter or word spacing can easily can be adjusted as well.

Letter or word spacing can easily can be adjusted as well.

 

8. Let’s add more text

 

9. Next step is to adjust spacing and alignment between text. Remember: as in yoga, design is all about balance.

 

10. It's looks good, YAY. We can either download our design or share it on Twitter or Facebook.

 
 

Our final design is looking good. Now go and make something fabulous. 

 
 

Yoga Mats as Art Objects

Baltimore-based artist Alex Ebstein creates brightly colored canvases from yoga mats.  She uses irregular grids and geometric constructions to create these bold compositions. 

 

Intricate Paper Cut Out Art By Patric Carbel

As a way to support endangered animals Manila-based artist Patrick Cabral created intricate paper cut out art of tigers, elephants, pandas... Each of these amazing paper sculptures are hand made and incorporate complex patterns into the face of each amimal.  Half of the proceeds from the sale of each sculpture goes to WWF Philippines

 

10 Places to Find the Best Free Stock Photos

In a world where first impressions are made online good images are a key part of putting together a great website. But finding images can be daunting task. You can either take photos yourself or buy stock photos or find images that are free.

There’s quite few websites where you can find good quality photos that are available for public use. Here’s my 10 favorite:

1. Freephotos.cc  

FreePhotos.cc is a free resource where you can find creative commons photos for your website or print projects. You can search  for any topic.

 
 

2. Raumort

“Stunning lifestyle imagery for modern creatives.” Raumort is full of free hand-selected stock photos that can be used for personal or commercial projects.

 

3. FoodiesFeed

I used this website quite often, I absolutely love it.    FoodiesFeed is a resource of free realistic food images in high resolution and free digital goods related to food.

4. Death to Stock

    Another amazing place for free images. Sign up for the email list and photos are curated and delivered to your inbox.

 

5. New Old Stock

New Old Stock features classic images from the public archives that are free of copyright restrictions.

 

6. Super Famous

Superfamous is the Los Angeles-based studio of Dutch interaction designer Folkert Gorter. You can find big collection of the images of nature. Many of Folkert’s high-resolution images are available under a creative commons attribution license, for personal and commercial use with credit.

 

7. Public Domain Archive

New 100% Free Stock Photos. Every. Single. Week. Everything you need for your creative projects, all public domain images!

 

8. Im Free

Im Free is very well curated and organized site. You can also find templates, buttons, icons and much more.

 

9. The Pattern Library

    The Pattern Library is not stock photo website but it contains huge number of patterns and textures for your projects.

 

10. Unsplash

Last but not least, Unsplash is my favorite website for free images. They have vast collection of amazing images. There’s new 10 new photos every 10 days. You can also upload your own images.