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The Graphic Designer's Guide to Portfolio Design, 3rd Edition by Debbie Rose Myers

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Chapter 9

Maneuvering around Your Site

Navigation

Walk into any bookstore and look around at all the books. Now assume that all of those books are in no order whatsoever—they’re not divided by category or in alphabetical order. Then suppose I ask you to find a book about the life of Harry Houdini in that bookstore. Think how difficult it would be. Plain books everywhere . . . no departments . . . no idea where to begin! Now transfer that concept to your digital portfolio. Without clear navigational clues, someone visiting for the first time would be at a total loss as to where to go to find what he or she was looking for. It wouldn’t take long for the visitor to leave—not what you want.

The home page of your Web site gives visitors the all-important first impression; the navigation system is the next most important element. Consequently, you must find a way to persuade your visitors to use the navigational devices you create so that they become entranced with your portfolio. When you make it easy for viewers to become involved with your content, they will be more willing to explore your project thoroughly. This chapter, therefore, shows you how to design a clear and inviting visual interface.

Getting There from Here

I recently looked at a digital portfolio whose content was fabulous. Unfortunately, it required patience and tenacity to find the series of hidden zones that revealed work only if you happened to pass your mouse pointer over them. It was very frustrating. When asked ...

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