Peer Review: Humans of Whistler

Peer Review #2:

This week I got to check out one of my fellow students, Siobhan Board’s blogs, “Humans of Whistler” and give my take on the design of the site. I want to say before getting into my review, that all of my opinions are subjective, and two people can have completely different visions, so please take everything with a grain of salt!

Gertz (2015) talks about copycat culture and how we all want our sites to look like the most popular sites, and end up looking the same as everyone else, I don’t think that “Humans of Whistler” has done that, but I do think the blog’s personal style and story needs to be fleshed out a little bit more. The theme still seems a bit like its default design. Maybe there could be a more personal cover photo, with an actual “Human of Whistler” in it, or even just a cool picture of Whistler itself, you could even focus on a sort of mountain theme that could carry throughout the site. Gertz (2015) also talks about designing from our hearts and designing each piece of content to reflect its personality, and while the design of “Humans of Whistler” is well organized, I do think it could reflect more heart.

Our recent guest speaker, Mauvé Page, (as well as Gertz, 2015) talked about several Visual/UI design aspects that I want to draw on with this peer review.

  1. Typography
  2. Photography
  3. Colour

Typography

I don’t think there’s any issue with the number of fonts used on the blog, however, the fonts used could be more unique, maybe more of a typewriter feeling could work, or even more of a handwritten style. I think the blog does a great job with representing humans and telling personal stories, so a font that people would physically write, or type could be interesting.

Photography

Just as I mentioned, I think while the photo of the sky on the home page is nice, it doesn’t say a lot about the blog, so pictures of humans in whistler or even the whistler skyline or mountain might be nice.

Colour

Purple is a very pretty and royal colour; however, I think it might be a bit too vibrant for the theme. With all of the white space and the purple, the blog can be a little hard to look at. There could be a great aesthetic with greys, blues, and greens if you wanted a “nature” theme to connect to the mountain. I also think that the red font used might be a bit too bright on the purple background, as seen at the bottom of the home page.

Additionally, Mauve and Gertz refer to UX Design (how a blog works), and I very quickly want to go into this to talk about the layout and spacing of the blog, because I think in this case, it’s an aesthetic tool as well as an infrastructural tool. I think there’s a lot of blank or white space that could be used to make the site homier. For example, I think it would be great if you could have a small section with different “Humans of Whistler” on the home page (like a small version of the Blog page I suppose), just so we get a feel for all of the people you’re writing about. I think having more images on the site as a whole would add a bit more fun and personality and fill up some space as well.

Just one last note, the posts on the blog aren’t accessible, if you go to “Blogs” in the toolbar, and click one of the blog titles, it goes to a “Nothing Here” page, so you can’t read the whole blog post, just what the excerpt says on the “Blog” page. I find this strange because the PUB 101 Assignments work, so I’m not sure what the issue is. Hope it’s an easy fix!

Thanks for having me Siobhan, great job on your blog and I hope you have a great second half of the semester!

Emily

References:

Gertz, Travis. 2015. “Design Machines. How to survive in the digital Apocalypse.” July 2015. Available from: https://louderthanten.com/articles/story/design-machines

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