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Erik
December 8th, 2003, 08:46 AM
I am in the process of redesigning my main site at www.vintage-computer.com and I am trying to create a unified logo that I can use there and at the top of these boards (the logo change will be the only thing to impact the boards right now.)

The goal is to replace the green and silver logo with the computers in the wagon with something nicer and more compact.

So, is there anyone out there with some grapical or conceptiual talent that can recommend a new logo?

Any suggestions would be greatly appreciated!

Erik

vic user
December 8th, 2003, 09:04 AM
Well, I like the little wagon and the pile of computers.

The only thing I would suggest is perhaps making the background lighter, so the words and the wagon stand out more.

Oh, and you could add a vic 20 into the wagon too :)

Chris

mbbrutman
December 8th, 2003, 05:50 PM
Wow, am I the only person who read the subject line and thought about turtle graphics?

Erik
December 8th, 2003, 06:57 PM
Wow, am I the only person who read the subject line and thought about turtle graphics?

Hehe. I didn't think of that at the time, but I can see where you'd get that idea.

I should really hit my wife up for some help with this since she's a web designer and graphic artist, but I wanted something more geeky then artsy. . . :)

Erik

NathanAllan
December 9th, 2003, 09:17 AM
Erik,
The first thing that came to mind when I read your post was comic book style art. I see the name written however you like it with blast lines coming from it, then all the computers drawn around it as if they were flying out from the name, with all the LED's and lights and things glowing. Maybe have soe spacy sci-fi sounds as the page is entered. Geeky enough?:)

~llama
December 9th, 2003, 06:30 PM
http://www.cinemafia.net/kevcave/pub/vcforum.png

perhaps something like this? This isnt meant to be a submission or anything, just a concept... i can do a nicer-looking one if you want though. This is just the kind of thing i thought of when you said "nicer and more compact".

Erik
December 9th, 2003, 08:14 PM
That's actually a nice concept and I like the font.

What I need to do is replace the lead banner on my site:

http://www.vintage-computer.com/images/vcbanner.jpg

I'll be "renaming" the site to something like "Erik Klein's Vintage Computers" or "Erik Klein's Vintage Computer Resources" or something.

I'll then follow that theme with the forum mini-banner:

http://www.vintage-computer.com/vcforum/templates/subSilver/images/logo_phpBB.gif

I'm redesigning the site itself to be a bit more graphical and high tech (giving up, somewhat, on the low bandwidth premise since my machine images are big anyway) and I'm shooting for a common theme for the site and the logo. If I had to guess I'd say the overall site logo would probably be no bigger then about 100 pixels square, give or take. Like a corporate logo I'd use it as an identity element wherever the site and the forums are referenced including back-links from other sites as well as at the top of every page on my site. I'll probably even put it on some business cards for the next VCF.

My current "logo" is basically the wagon image:

http://www.vintage-computer.com/images/smallbannerroll.jpg

But that's not really an identity element by itself and there's really no easy way to add the requisite text to make it that. I'm also looking to make it more stylized (like a symbol with a few words) as opposed to a complex picture.

It might be better if I get the site design itself worked out and then work back from that to the logo.

If I can scrape together any real free time to sketch it out I'll have a parallel beta website running in a few days to a week. . . assuming I get the time! :)

I'll post here when that's ready to look at.

Thanks!

Erik

~llama
December 10th, 2003, 12:47 PM
Thanks...

the font is "Lady Starlight" from Larabie Fonts, http://www.larabiefonts.com . All the fonts on that site are freeware, which is why i have them all :D

i think its a good idea to update website layouts from time to time, good luck with the redesign!

olddataman
December 11th, 2003, 08:08 AM
Erik, I,m no artist, but I have an occasional thought that seem worth trying out. I like the idea of a simple picture and a few words, fo how about something like this: Picture a sign nxst to a "portal" The sign says "Erik Klein's VC Collection, or "Erik Klein's VC Forum" Looking through the posrtal of your VC Collection one sees a panmorama of vintage PC's and looking throujgh the portal of the forum, one sees a panorama of people discussing vc's. Maybe it is too complex. Iwish I hwas an artist. My daghter's boyfriend is the guy who does all of the graphics fir the loocal newspapers, I'll ask him if it could be done,
Ray

carlsson
December 19th, 2003, 07:42 AM
Erik, I'm no artist, but rather than asking some one else (I know one who is very good at making clipart once he knows exactly what you want in the picture), I played around a little myself:

http://www.mds.mdh.se/~dal95acn/smallbannerroll.gif

Yes, I know it looks terrible and simplistic, but I always felt your cart was overloaded with stuff, much more like you were going to the junkyard to get rid of all this rather than showing your great collection. Maybe you get some inspiration from this simplistic piece of "art".

Super-Slasher
December 19th, 2003, 08:03 AM
Gimmie a few days, and I'll whip up a few examples which I think would make your site look real nifty...

Erik
December 19th, 2003, 08:13 AM
Thanks for the suggestions!

I'm still trying to figure out what I want in a logo but I think I may have settled on a "look and feel" for the site, at least.

Now I have to spend some time in Photoshop to get my ideas down in pixels.

Please keep the ideas coming! :)

Erik

CP/M User
December 20th, 2003, 05:37 PM
"~llama" wrote in message:

http://www.cinemafia.net/kevcave/pub/vcforum.png

> perhaps something like this? This isnt meant to
> be a submission or anything, just a concept... i
> can do a nicer-looking one if you want though.
> This is just the kind of thing i thought of when
> you said "nicer and more compact".

Heh! That's kinda in violation with my small logo! ;-)

Cheers,
CP/M User.

CP/M User
December 20th, 2003, 05:40 PM
"carlsson" wrote in message:

> Erik, I'm no artist, but rather than asking
> some one else (I know one who is very
> good at making clipart once he knows
> exactly what you want in the picture), I
> played around a little myself:

http://www.mds.mdh.se/~dal95acn/smallbannerroll.gif

> Yes, I know it looks terrible and simplistic,
> but I always felt your cart was overloaded
> with stuff, much more like you were going
> to the junkyard to get rid of all this rather
> than showing your great collection. Maybe
> you get some inspiration from this simplistic
> piece of "art".

What?! You're kidding me, that looks brillant. I
would have sent that to an art gallery. Beats
the tripe they already have! ;-)

Cheers,
CP/M User.

CP/M User
December 20th, 2003, 07:57 PM
"Erik" wrote in message:

> I am in the process of redesigning my main
> site at www.vintage-computer.com and I am
> trying to create a unified logo that I can use
> there and at the top of these boards (the
> logo change will be the only thing to impact
> the boards right now.)

> The goal is to replace the green and silver
> logo with the computers in the wagon with
> something nicer and more compact.

> So, is there anyone out there with some
> grapical or conceptiual talent that can
> recommend a new logo?

> Any suggestions would be greatly
> appreciated!

How about incorporating some black & white spirals
into the backgroud?

That's a good way of keeping up with the Vintage
trends! (just don't make them Animated GIFs,
otherwise you'll send us into a trans!)

Just an idea! :-)

Cheers,
CP/M User.

carlsson
December 21st, 2003, 11:18 AM
You're kidding me, that looks brillant. I would have sent that to an art gallery. Beats the tripe they already have! ;-)
Ayep, certainly. Btw, did you notice the fancy 5.25" slot on the monitor I drew?

CP/M User
December 21st, 2003, 11:47 AM
"carlsson" wrote in message:
>> You're kidding me, that looks brillant. I would have
>> sent that to an art gallery. Beats the tripe they
>> already have! ;-)

> Ayep, certainly. Btw, did you notice the fancy
> 5.25" slot on the monitor I drew?

No actually, I hadn't until now. But that's what a
good art does, it makes you see different things
each time you look at something! :-)

Cheers.

Erik
December 22nd, 2003, 12:35 PM
For those that are following this I've uploaded a quick and dirty sample of where I'm headed with the new site design (I think).

If you're bored please take a look at http://www.vintage-computer.com/newweb/vc6.shtml and tell me what you think of the basic inferface.

The oval area in the upper left corner is for the logo and for rollover images for each of the menu options (for instance, if you roll over the "forum" area then the oval will turn into some image representing the forums.)

The vertical bar down the left side will be the menu area. It will default to a list of machines in my collection but will have a list of years for history and so on. . .

I'm thinking it may have to get thicker, but I don't want to take up too much more text space.

The links on the page are, of course, quite broken.

Feedback is welcome.

Erik

CP/M User
December 22nd, 2003, 01:02 PM
"Erik" wrote in message:

> For those that are following this I've uploaded
> a quick and dirty sample of where I'm headed
> with the new site design (I think).

> If you're bored please take a look at
> http://www.vintage-computer.com/newweb/vc6.shtml
> and tell me what you think of the basic inferface.

> The oval area in the upper left corner is for the
> logo and for rollover images for each of the
> menu options (for instance, if you roll over the
> "forum" area then the oval will turn into some
> image representing the forums.)

> The vertical bar down the left side will be the menu
> area. It will default to a list of machines in my
> collection but will have a list of years for history
> and so on. . .

> I'm thinking it may have to get thicker, but I don't
> want to take up too much more text space.

> The links on the page are, of course, quite broken.

> Feedback is welcome.

That looks good, I like that! :-)

Cheers.

carlsson
December 23rd, 2003, 03:11 AM
Yep, it is a perfect fit within 800x600 - which still is used by some 20-30% of the surfers but too many sites (like those I design ;-) neglect. Is that grey material supposed to look like metal or grey wood?

While some of us hate it, you might want to consider a top frame or other absolute/fixed positioning of the navigation. With some tweaking, it is possible to use a fixed element without frames (based upon you have some server-side parsing of each page - e.g. written in PHP), but it is optional. You might also want to move the headline inside the navigation?

Regarding the left column is too wide - check it in 800x600 and see if the remaining space is enough for what you want to display. The site I'm currently working with has about exact the same width on its left frame, and wider than that I wouldn't go.

Erik
December 23rd, 2003, 06:01 AM
Yep, it is a perfect fit within 800x600 - which still is used by some 20-30% of the surfers but too many sites (like those I design ;-) neglect. Is that grey material supposed to look like metal or grey wood?

It's supposed to look like a brushed metal. It may be a little dark but I wanted to maintain contrast with the white text.

I am shooting for a site that will fit within 800x600 without horizontal scrolling. In my next iteration (probaby about 2 years out if history is any indication) I am almost certainly going to assume that most folks are semi-current! :)



While some of us hate it, you might want to consider a top frame or other absolute/fixed positioning of the navigation. With some tweaking, it is possible to use a fixed element without frames (based upon you have some server-side parsing of each page - e.g. written in PHP), but it is optional. You might also want to move the headline inside the navigation?

I'm not a big fan of frames and while I'd like the navigation to be "fixed" I am not willing to sacrifice the rest of my goals for that. That's one reason I have the bottom navigation menu (which needs to be updated to match the top) in case the page was scrolled.

I will probably have to do some code to keep the menu bar on the left growing with the text on the site which might get fun. . .

I pulled the headline from the navigation graphics specifically so that I can have it in straight HTML. I'll be doing some other manipulations like that to make sure that the page is search-optimized. Server side parsing is nice but beyond doing some SSI to get the scripts standardized I probably won't do too much content generation on-the-fly since it really disorients the spiders and makes your rankings plummet.


Regarding the left column is too wide - check it in 800x600 and see if the remaining space is enough for what you want to display. The site I'm currently working with has about exact the same width on its left frame, and wider than that I wouldn't go.

I did come up with the width based on what I need space for in the page area. I'm going to have to resize many of my graphics as is and I don't want them to get too small. I think you're probably right that the size is about where it needs to be.

Thanks tons for the feedback! I'm pretty green at this and I'm learning a lot as I go. . .

Erik

carlsson
December 23rd, 2003, 08:30 AM
I am shooting for a site that will fit within 800x600 without horizontal scrolling.
Since it is a retro site, maybe it should be a horizontal scroller (or you were not much into computer games?). :)


I'm not a big fan of frames and while I'd like the navigation to be "fixed" I am not willing to sacrifice the rest of my goals for that.
Server side parsing is nice but beyond doing some SSI to get the scripts standardized I probably won't do too much content generation on-the-fly since it really disorients the spiders and makes your rankings plummet.


If you like, I can provide you (and anyone else interested) with a skeleton how to make things stick without frames and still looking halfway decent.

Besides, I thought quality web results were achieved through using a few but relevant meta keywords rather than relying on crawling. A page can be "dynamic" without the contents changing too.. although most people would call that a waste of CPU power.

Erik
December 23rd, 2003, 09:05 AM
If you like, I can provide you (and anyone else interested) with a skeleton how to make things stick without frames and still looking halfway decent.

I'd love to see the code. I'm always looking for interesting stuff to learn from or add to my site.


Besides, I thought quality web results were achieved through using a few but relevant meta keywords rather than relying on crawling. A page can be "dynamic" without the contents changing too.. although most people would call that a waste of CPU power.

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) these days is a whole new ballgame. Meta tags are useless for almost all search engines, especially the big ones like Google. Sites with the highest ranks get them from a variety of things with the most important being content, link popularity/relevancy and structure.

The spiders are all about getting content to search engines and anything that hides any aspect of the content is a bad thing.

Erik

carlsson
December 24th, 2003, 01:39 AM
I'd love to see the code. I'm always looking for interesting stuff to learn from or add to my site.
I'll try to cook something together and send you. I have to check that it works before suggesting it. :oops:

In the mean time, you can check out this site which I used as my source. To create fixed elements for Mozilla and other competent browsers is rather simple, but if you want it to work for the 90% users who prefer Internet Explorer, some tweaking as described on the page is required:

http://devnull.tagsoup.com/fixed/