When you set up a website, there are a few things that you want to be on the site. Information about you and your product or service (or yourself if it’s a blog), easy navigation for your visitors, and for your site to be aesthetically pleasing. For the latter, there are a few things to go into designing your site, and one of those things is the photos and images that you choose to go into your design. Your images should go along with the rest of your web design, adhering to color scheme, symmetry, and size. It is very important to use images on your site because it really does add a strong appearance to your website, and will provide a nice polished look.
With imagery, you want to make sure that the colors and tones match with the rest of web design. This does not mean that you need to exactly replicate the colors in your photographs, but it should work together. For instance, if your website incorporates reds, browns, and oranges, typically warm colors, than you should looks into images with warmer tones and temperatures will work best for your site. If your images will be what dictates your color scheme, then you need to make sure that they reflect the mood of your site. Brighter, more vivid colors like yellows will be more exciting, whereas blues are calming. So use colors to help establish a mood for your site.
Symmetry can play a big role in your website as well. Like color, symmetry can also help set the mood for your site. If you’re wanting to have a clean, organized feel to your site (say you have a product or service) then you want more symmetry on your site, and your images should reflect that. On the other side, asymmetry shows more motion and movement, and can give your site a fun feel to it. When you use images that are positioned in the right of left third, or top and bottom third, it will give you the same asymmetrical quality as the rest of your site, and will be very complementary to the rest of your website or blog.
This is something that is often overlooked when it comes to using images in a web design, but it is something that is very important. A lot of times people will opt to use large images, especially if they nice images, but it is not always called for. You don’t want to use large images if it replaces space for important information, unless you can layer the information on top of it. Again with the example of selling a product, you’d want a photo to demonstrate the product, but not so large that it would take away from the information necessary to educate your audience. If the image is the only thing important, than it can be as large as you like. For a blog however, you would probably want to make sure that images you use complement the blocking in your blog posts. Something that looks like a good editorial post, with text wrapped around the images, is a good look for any site.
These are the basics for setting up a solid, aesthetically pleasing website and how to use images to complement the design. It is important that you take a good amount of time to find proper images, and then how to properly use them once on your website. These images really need to reinforce the look that you are already working on with your site, and it is important that images don’t ever take away from your important information, unless of course, the photo is the information. So keep all these things in mind as you start adding images to your web design.
Bill Thomas is a photographer from North Carolina, and a content creator for Aspire Direct. He understands the importance of imagery in web design, and the power of images.