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Website Critique - Help with colours (visual art related)

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Hey all, Let me start off by prefacing this. I know visual arts is more for models and artwork, not for website design, and that we have a web development board. I've posted a message on the web development board already, and I was suggested to change up the colour scheme and play with the layout slightly. This is what brings me to the visual arts boards, I'm looking for suggestions on colours that will retain the style I'm after, and I've never had much of an eye for art / colour. This is why I'm here. If this is still not supposed to be on this board, by all means, delete it. I just don't know where else to turn, most of the people in the web development board are more technical and this is purely a colour question with some minor questions on flow and layout. I'm working on a new layout for my site, which can be found here. Let me state what I'm after: Something very simple, but elegant. It has to flow, without seeming boxed and cramped. Add a touch of flair and style for good measure. Overall: The light blue isn't working with the darker blue, but if I switch to a darker blue, it just looks like black or close enough to black that it looks very monochrome. I really love the masthead graphic (yes it's from Fallout) and I like the style of the page, I just can't get anything to fit together as a whole. Seperate the header, and I love it. Seperate the sidebar, and I love it. Add them together, and I don't like it at all. Masthead: Branding on the right looks fine, as long as the sidebar is on the right side. If I move the sidebar to the left, it's a complete mishmash. I can't just flip the image though, or the power armour helmet looks really, really goofy. The only other thing I can do is remove the branding, and put somewhere else, but that makes the page rather disconjoined. Sidebar: I can't find a way of colouring the sidebar, so that it flows or contrasts with the top sidebar, without being too bright or too dark. The current colour is too light, but using the same blue from the masthead graphic, results in it being too dark. I'd like to not box it in, but if I have to, that's fine. Heading: The bar beside News looks terrible, in my opinion. I need a way to seperate the title / heading from the content, without going overboard. Anyone have any ideas or suggestions? I'm all ears and open to anything, even boxing it up so I can colour it differently and make it flow nicer.

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Why stick with the blue color when there's a lot of other color in your banner. You can use various tone of orange, and if you absolutely want blue color, it's possible to mix them with orange tone. But only a light blue seems somehow too soft for your website content. It doesnt match well with your banner.

So my advice, use the colors you have in the banner. Mix them, try some different tones. You could even modify some colors of your banner (add maybe some red in the eyes, instead of the bright orange)

else, the layouts is good IMHO.


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Well, it's already improving, but I feel the orange is a bit too bright for what you call a "simple, elegant" design.
But before I chat about colours, a few bits that are easy to change :
I agree about the footnote, center it, for a start, and make it the same size than your "Posted the 30th of August..." notes.
Also I think that right aligning your items in the sidebar would be more balanced, especially since you went for a boxed looked (which works great, by the way).

Now colours :
I like the masthead, good balance of colours (orange against blues always works, with a bit of tweaking).
I like what you have done with the shades of grey, it's nice and subtle, which is why I find the orange just out of place.
You could keep on this idea of subtly coloured shades of grey.
Have a more orangy/suntan shade of grey and a blueish/steel one for the backgrounds (one or two of varying intensity, a bit like you already have but slightly more saturated).
For the fonts, instead of the orange, use either a very pale yellow (like a the center of the eye) that contrasts with a darker blueish grey background, or a dark blue against a slightly orange/yellow grey.

I am a bit unsure about messing with the "normal" text from the news items, I think black is fine, although depending on the background, you might wanna experiment with dark blue.

Still, it's already rather good, I think.

Hope this helps ! :)

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Some sort of buffer space before the footer might help with the problem you're talking about, GroZZleR. Center the text, as well. You could probably have some success with decreasing the font size down there, as well. It would make the footer less obvious and more of a footnote to the page.

In a retaliation, the president has been moved into a bunker deep within Camp David.

Pretty much everything I'm going to say is agreeing with ahw - he's got a good eye. I think it would be a cool idea to try a really dark slate-blue for the normal text, and its okay if it still looks pretty black. I'm actually okay with the orange... except when it's bolded. That's not so great.

The hover (alink) link color is a little off, too. It's too 'blue' - whereas the rest of the site has a lower saturation... try making it a little more grayish (just a little).

The right hand nav bar really could stand to be a little thinner, and it might be worth a shot to try right aligning the text there. As a picky note, see if you can't even up the spacing around the HR bar b/w the links and login box.

Really, though, I like the site a lot. And the top image is great. Woo. Great job, and sorry for all the comments (I hate getting critiqued on things, but I know I need it. And I'm always asking for web site crits here).

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I like it, a lot.

If i could add something however, maybe a slightly thicker border around the content (the border between the lighter colors in the middle and the gray outside. You could blur them together, which would look more natural, and less boxy.

As it is, I'd be happy to use it myself :)

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