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Chapter 4. Sites that WOW!

Chapter 4. Sites that WOW!

Pulling it all together to make eye-popping web sites and home pages

WOW Game Site

Applying Patterns to Web Graphics

Web Pattern Recipes

Gallery Site with Viewer Feedback

Adding File Information to Images

Customizing a Web Photo Gallery

WOW Portfolio Site

WOW Information Site

WOW Flash Splash Page

This is the big payoff. Bring together all you've learned and mix in more new techniques to build these exciting and practical home pages and sites. In this chapter you get a real-world sense of how to use what you know to design eye-popping, useful Web pages with that Wow quality that will keep viewers coming back for more. By the time you've finished this chapter, you'll be confident that you've mastered the graphic techniques, tips, and tricks you need to make some of the best-looking sites on the Web.

Getting in the Game

This chapter starts with a bang with the Wow Game Site. We show you how to construct the home page of a portal site for gamers. This page is the gateway to everything from a chat room to a forum. You'll learn how to pack in lots of diverse items on a home page using a modular design that pulls everything together. The beauty of this design is that it's easy to update. Substituting new graphics can give the page a whole new look without the need for a complete redesign. As you build this design, you'll learn the secrets to creating those sexy interface graphics you've seen on other sites with high-end graphics. We give you some easy recipes for creating cool, lightweight patterns in the section called Web Pattern Recipes. You learn how to make scan lines, grids, diagonal lines, boxes, and frames. Along with the recipes come instructions on how to use these patterns as repeating page background graphics and as pattern presets for filling foreground graphics. All that is found in the section on Applying Patterns to Web Graphics.

Showing Off

The Web is the perfect venue for exhibiting your photographs, artwork, and designs. We've put together a couple of projects that will help you do that efficiently and with style. You'll be amazed at how easy it is to make a complete gallery site that solicits automatic feedback from your audience. Check it out in the project called Gallery Site with Viewer Feedback. We weren't content to stop with Photoshop's built-in gallery templates. We show you how to personalize your galleries in the sections on Customizing a Web Photo Gallery and Adding File Information to Images. Then we take things a step further with the Wow Portfolio Site project. There you'll learn how to build a stunning three-dimensional portfolio interface and use it to repurpose images generated by Photoshop's Web Photo Gallery.

Getting Serious

You'll switch gears from image to information as you work through the Wow Information Site project. This project offers two ways to position text and graphics on a page. You'll learn how to create tables in ImageReady to hold everything in place, and how to export a page with CSS (Cascading Style Sheet) positioning. And you may be surprised to learn that you can add HTML text to a page right in ImageReady.

We're sure you can't wait to dive into the last project, the Wow Flash Splash Page. We'll walk you through an ImageReady workaround for making a site splash page with a Flash movie that tests whether your viewers have the Flash Player installed on their systems. So jump right in and try out all these exciting projects.

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