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With the evolution of website design, sites went from being totally basic in the early days to wholly complicated in more recent years. It seemed that the more designers could do with a website, the more they were tempted to pad designs up with all kinds of UI elements. 

The problem with adding all of these flashy features was the negative impact on the end-user, who often got a confusing, cluttered experience that was frustrating to navigate. As this problem reared its head, designers decided to turn to more minimalist designs, with the goal of producing faster load times and better compatibility between screen sizes. 

To understand what exactly minimalism is, let’s take a closer look at this design movement’s features.

Minimalism: The Art of Maximizing the Use of Negative Space

If you want to make minimalistic designs after web designer school, you will need to pay attention to negative space. That’s because the first principle of minimalism is keeping flow centred around your content, which can be achieved by maximizing negative space—the wide-open white or uniformly coloured space on a page. If you’re selling a bike, for example, you might use a picture of that bike surrounded by whitespace, which helps draw the user’s eye to the star element. 

Beyond manipulating the user’s eye flow to the most important parts of a page, maximizing negative space allows you to more easily organize other page elements in a way that won’t distract or overwhelm the user. It’s also great for creating a feeling of luxury, elegance, and sophistication.

Keeping the Interface Elements to a Minimum

With minimalism, the design strives to eliminate any elements that aren’t needed to support core user tasks, keeping only as many icons, links, graphics, images, and other units of the interface as required to help users easily navigate the site.

In an effort to reduce distracting features and content, many minimalist-oriented designers will look for ways to keep the site looking as clean as possible. How can you do this after earning your web designer diploma? You can consider using a hamburger menu, a small menu that can expand to show more options. This type of menu is often used to great effect, but it’s important to know your user base before making this move, as research has shown that audiences above the age of 44 have more trouble discovering navigation options with this method. Remember not to make your user’s core tasks more difficult by hiding or eliminating necessary content.

Minimalist designers must find ways to reduce interface elements while retaining the core functionality

Minimalist designers must find ways to reduce interface elements while retaining the core functionality

Bigger and Bolder Photography

Minimalist design will often make use of large, vivid photographs or sliders known in the industry as “hero shots.” It’s important to remember to choose a high-definition photograph that’s striking yet as minimalist in its content as the whitespace surrounding it. A busy, cluttered photograph will make the design lose its minimalist feel. Try to choose photographs of subjects set up against their own whitespaces, such as a clear sky or bare wall.

Limited Use of Colours  

Where the 2000s were dictated by the use of lots of loud, vibrant colours, minimalist design makes use of a much more monochromatic palette. Subtle colour use prevents the distraction caused by too many busy colours, instead of working to highlight the most important features of the site. One bold colour can still appear in a minimalist design, often to attract the user to clickable items. 

Getting a minimalist website design done right is all about achieving the right balance between simplicity and sophistication to keep things masterfully content-focussed. Each of the elements used to achieve this need to be executed by someone with professional website training. Students who train for a web designer diploma will be at an immediate advantage in the hiring sphere, having learned the necessary techniques of the trade.

If you’re trying to decide between career colleges in Alberta, you’ll want to find one that will give you the hands-on experience and confidence you need to pursue your passion for a career in website design. The moment you are able to step in to offer the kind of website design support that businesses are looking for is the moment when you will realize how valuable your website design training has become.

Passionate about a career in website design?