Work in Progress: Blog Extreme Makeover

Due to sickness I haven’t been able to keep up with my blog as I like, but that doesn’t mean that I haven’t done any work on other projects! To give you some insight, here’s a short mini-series of what I’ve been up to the past months. First up, blog update!

Dithering is not okay!

So I have been wanting to do an aesthetic update to my blog for a very long time, but it takes a lot of work to produce something that I’m 100% satisfied with. I’m a stickler for details. Like, really nitpicking. If I choose a color on a main element of the blog and I see it dither on a screen dump, I get allergic reactions. I’m not kidding.

But my main reason for changing aesthetics (apart from needing a fresh look) is that I want to tone down the contrasts. The current look on the blog uses very high contrast which hurts my eyes if I concentrate too much on it (look at the blog background, then look at the main body, then look back again. Ouch!). 

The idea is that the new look will use a Jade theme, a dark/night look if you will. Something that doesn’t blind you while you play in your dark gamer cave. I always knew that Jade would be the color, but oh boy, getting the details right has been a rollercoaster ride. And I’m still on that rollercoaster.

This is how it looks like so far:

Current WIP

Change in color and contrast!

With the Jade main theme, I’ve added scarlet and gold details. To be very color specific: jade is basically dark cyan that graduates to green as it goes brighter. On the modern color wheel, cyan’s complementary color is red while green’s complementary color is magenta. A.k.a. red + magenta = scarlet. With the jade and scarlet theme, I’ve added some gold details to soften the color contrast a little.

I’ve been through a slew of different versions of this theme. I’ve tried the Jade theme without the scarlet/gold details, but the problem with a monochromatic color theme is that you stop seeing the color after a while. If everything is green, then NOTHING IS!  Here is a few of my past WIPs:

As you can see, I’ve gone back and forth on some elements, especially the main and side menus. Which colors, how much details and textures versus simplicity, and on and on. I’m still trying to find that perfect sweet spot.

I even experimented with a Misty Teahouse logo in one attempt, but never really fell in love with it. I might revisit that idea if I get inspiration.

Here are a few of my trashed ideas:

The trouble is to get all the different elements to work together. Something that looks gorgeous on its own doesn’t necessarily match with the rest of the theme. So I’m basically just painting a million different ideas and see if I can get the puzzle pieces to match up. I’m getting there… slowly…

Anyway, I hope this gave you some insight into the process. If you have any thoughts on the progress of the theme, let me know!

2 thoughts on “Work in Progress: Blog Extreme Makeover”

  1. The upcomming site layout seems very cool, relaxing for the eyes, the dark red top bar + the different shades og green/jade is perfect for the MoP theme.
    Oh and the Bell at the bottom is awesome 🙂
    Some pandaren style trees in each side with animated leaves slowly falling off now and then and fading away randomly could be cool too. Subtle ofc not too distracting.

    1. That’s not a bad idea. I’m still trying out new ideas to match the theme, but they often turn out too distracting, so subtlety is a big factor. I will continue my work, thanks for the encouragement!

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