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Word and Pictures

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Joshua Needs

Creative Designer

There seems to be a trend developing in the digital arena that suggests a picture really does say a thousand words. Nothing attracts attention more than a pretty picture, be it photographic or illustration…which might have Mr SEO in a pickle.

Words in all their glory get picked up by the Google bods, this is how we find things when we search online, so less words means problems right?

Well it doesn’t seem to be affecting some design decisions being made recently that suggests that the image is still king of the castle. In the past it was always custom for copy to be sprayed about to give the user better direction when getting their online fix, now however it seems copy is slimmed down to give a more direct user journey that encourages exploration through the site.

This works well on an international level too, if your site is looking more ‘War and Peace’, and less ‘My First Read’ then this may cause problems on a design/layout level when converted to suit the required translation.

Simple sites that are well designed with slim line copy could do better in international pick up. Heres my top image heavy sites that have attracted my magpie eye:

escapeflight.com

A simple and visually stunning site and by their own admission “We won't baffle you with reams and reams of data that you're unlikely to read, we'll keep it simple and visual, high impact and low on the word count.” Says it all really.

Safestyle Secret Door

Massive images from Google Maps that encourages user exploration, hardly any copy in sight which might be one of the reasons why this piece went viral - making a big impression in Japan, Poland and Russia!

usatoday.com

Now obviously this has more copy than the previous two, but you aren’t overawed by the articles. Design, layout and use of images create a minimal clean master piece that encourages user exporation.

journey.lifeofpimovie.com

SOAP worked with Fox Home Entertainment to create this stunning HTML5 parallax scrolling site, which takes a tour behind-the-scenes of how some of Life of Pi's most amazing moments came about. Again low on written content but high on visual wow factor.

What are your favourite examples? Share them in the comments below.

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Joshua Needs Creative Designer

Joshua joined us in 2012, with over eight years commercial experience. He has worked with clients such as Adidas, Coca-Cola and Unilever previously, his ideal project would be to work on a design brief for Nike. Joshua's design heroes include The Designers Republic, Jessica Walsh and NorthKingdom.