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asimpleart
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Ed Seedhouse
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I really really hate that

I really really hate that bouncing menu effect. :?

Ed Seedhouse

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amadika
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Beautiful site! But I think

Beautiful site! But I think I agree with Ed about the bouncing menu thing.

On a very picky note however, I have a few things to point out:
1) On the right side, one of the leaves looks like it's been cut off. Tongue
2) I don't like how when you're between links on the nav, it switches back to the default. This wouldn't be such a big deal, but it gets really annoying seeing all the different images when you run your cursor down: instead of seeing 8 image changes you see 16....
3) I don't know that I like the dirt at the bottom footer. It ends abruptly. Perhaps sprinkling out the dirt a bit would help.
4) I might also suggest changing the overlay color background when the light box comes up... perhaps to the same purple you used instead of the default black.

Good scaling of text though... nicely done Smile

@}->-- Amanda

Ed Seedhouse
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Also I find your fonts way

Also I find your fonts way to small to easily read on a 1280x1024 screen. And it doesn't resize well in IE7, which I am using at the moment. A couple of resizes and your main body text goes right off the screen.

And did I mention that I really really, no I mean really hate those boucing menus? :curse: How do they help me, the user, use your site? They don't, they just make it harder.

As does the teensy tiny text - does the landscaping company not want money from older folks with weak eyes?

It is pretty, but does pretty sell product?

Ed Seedhouse

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asimpleart
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Thanks!

Thanks for the feedback! So I guess the rollovers in the flash need to change, any suggestions? I think I may agree with you on the dirt at the footer as well, and the lightbox. Thanks again!

amadika
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I just noticed one more

I just noticed one more thing that I find to be a bit awkward, and that is the navigation for the gallery. You first have to choose a photo gallery, then you are given the images, but to choose a new gallery, you have to click on photo gallery again, and then select the gallery. It would be nice to eliminate this step. This is SUPER picky usability however.

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asimpleart
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Few things fixed

Hey, thanks again for all the critiquing, very appreciated!

I agreed with some of the comments and adjusted accordingly, so take a look and let me know what you think. thanks again!

amadika
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The dirt on the bottom looks

The dirt on the bottom looks much better! And I'm happy you fixed the menu. But the nav image changes on the left are still annoying (not that it changes, just that there's so many) And the functionality of the gallery is still lacking (as I mentioned before) A suggestion to help might be to utilize individual service page by putting a link into the corresponding gallery on each page. Just a suggestion... and a simple fix that would add more usability.

@}->-- Amanda

asimpleart
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Left Service Menu

Not sure what you really mean about the images changing, I originally had a placeholder image that said "choose service", so the person new to mouseover, but the boss suggested using an actual photo. For the photo gallery I'm putting back buttons, i guess that helps a little. I think the service pages will have links to the gallery , and vice versa too. Thanks again !

amadika
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Run your cursor down the

Run your cursor down the menu quickly first and then slowly, and you'll sell the 8 images from the corresponding categories, plus the waterfall default image (8 times) EX (imagine the text are images):
-Hardscaping
-Waterfall
-Concrete
-Waterfall
-Stone and Masonry
-Waterfall
...
When it should be:
-Hardscaping
-Concrete
-Stone and Masonry

It seems fine to have one as a default (ie the waterfall) but it shouldn't pop up everytime you move your cursor. It seems it should stay on the last one rolled over.

This is REALLY picky... but something that I would personally get annoyed with on a site---go too fast and you'll cause seizures Wink

**I just realized I lied about the text resizing. The body text does fine, but your left menu needs help.

@}->-- Amanda

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Comments of your site

I viewed it in both Firefox 2.0.0.4 and Opera 9.21 on a Windows machine with a screen resolution of 800x600.

In Firefox, the Welcome text is too tiny for me to comfortably read. It's still small in Opera, but not as small. Also, the text would be easier to read if you didn't use a serif font.

In both Firefox and Opera the top image extends past the area that contains your Services and Welcome information on both sides. It makes the page design off-balance.

I like your nav bar and your images are attractive.

You might want to consider adding bullets to this text:
- Add structural dimension with hardscaping, concrete, stone and masonry.
- Create a tranquil atmosphere with mood lighting and trickling water.
- Build engaging character with an outdoor kitchen and grill.

Whereas, "create a tranquil atmosphere" is easy to imagine, I was unsure what it means to "add structural dimension." Similarly, I was unsure how adding an outdoor kitchen and grill can "build engaging character." What does that mean?

The "Services" heading is descriptive; the "Welcome" heading isn't. I think that "Create Your Own Utopia" would work better than "Welcome."

Hope that helps,
Howard

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fatfreddy
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Nice looking site, great

Nice looking site, great concept and well laid out. I find it instantly pleasing to the eye and it makes me want to explore further - which is the most important thing.

I have to agree about the waterfall flashing in between the other menu images - if you could keep the previously displayed image there until another menu item is rolled over , it would be easier on the eye (and less distracting).

Text size is OK for me but Ed's point is very valid. I'm sure a lot of people that will want landscaping services will be of an older age - with eyesight to match. The default size is ok and you allow upsizing, which is good. The issue is that the structure doesn't handle the upsize well.
The left menu div needs to expand with the upsize in text. As it is (in FF anyway) one upsize pushes the picture halfway out of the box. It breaks instantly. As a general rule I try and get all my designs to accommodate a minimum of two upsizes - depending on your intial font size that should be suitable for most eyes.

I would consider changing the top image on each page - it's just a quick and easy reference for people as they can obviously see the page has changed. However, it looks like you put a fair bit of work into the flash before the image so it may be unreasonable time / cost wise.

Contact page text "Feel free to drop us a line, we would love to hear from you!" is overflowing the box even at default text size. A little work on padding / margins will fix that easily.

All in all, I think you've done a good job - a little more attention to detail and you're on a winner.

HTH

Fat Freddy

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asimpleart
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Hey, thanks for the input!

Thanks so much for the input! Really appreciate and value all your advice. Looks like the left menu is a unanimous agreement, I'll see what I can do.

philbert25
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nice looking site

I haven't had time to really look over the code, but I like the design. The leaves and dirt ect. really break up the "boxiness" look that plagues a lot of CSS based sites. This is a problem I need to work on myself. I also like the color combinations and very subtle textures used. I am going to point out the few problems I noticed.

  1. Hardscaping under Services is the only page where the picture at the top changes. I would do this for all pages, or not at all. Also on that page, the buttons have an outline around them from the previous picture used.
  2. The Fireplaces and Woodstoves photo gallery has two Go Back buttons.
  3. In IE6 the top area does not align with the "wrapped" area. It is pushed slightly to the right of it.
  4. The text at the bottom of the crest logo is very hard to read. You probably didn't design that though.
  5. For non-header text, I would probably use a sans-serif font, but that is debatable.
  6. Finally, I concur that the the Services list switching back to the waterfall when mousing between navigational links is very annoying.

Overall, I really like the look of the site.

I got nuthin'

asimpleart
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New Design... Sorta

http://www.thesuburbangroup.net

Turns out the client's business is more concrete, stone work, etc than pretty flowers and landscaping, so here is the new design. What do you guys think, in comparison, and relatively speaking.

amadika
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Too bad! I loved the flowers

Too bad! I loved the flowers and dirt of the other one. But the background is awesome on this one. You left the wood border around the bottom left image... perhaps change it to fit the rest? And there's some weird issue going on with your footer image. It looks like your clone-stamping was a little off perhaps? The stone looks like it's bending... which stone doesn't do.
Perhaps the rocks on the logo can come outside of the image. And add the tree to the outside too?

@}->-- Amanda

asimpleart
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Clients Wishes

Yes I know, I agree! I think the design is going to stay put, the client was pretty nit picky and now that he is satisfied, I think we're just going to move forward haha. Thanks for the feedback amadika Smile