Re: [Gimp-web] GIMP Site Redesign

First off, thanks for the super-warm reception to this mockup.  I've honestly never had such positive, kind feedback to a design before.  It's inspiring, and definitely gives me the motivation to finish/refine these screens and continue working with you all.

Second, to answer some questions/comments-

1) Yes, the type used here is Helvetica Neue (good eye!) but yes, I completely agree we should use a Google WebFont.  Because of it's versatile weights, I'm a fan of "Open Sans" (

2) I struggled with which OS-style screenshots to use here..  The reason I went with these is because the Ubuntu/Windows variety has a bit more love and polish to the UI, and I designed this to appeal to a more mainstream audience.  With Gimp already being included in most Linux varieties, selling that demographic on Gimp's value is easy- converting a Windows/Mac user is a lot harder, and that demographic will expect a more polished UI.

3) Regarding the comment about graceful degradation, I'd rather focus on progressive enhancement.  I would hope that whoever codes this does so in HTML5/CSS3; which brings me to the next comment about..

4) Yes, ideally, this site would be coded responsively.  If it's not, it's not.  But the benefits to responsive design greatly outweigh the cons- especially when designing to accommodate users of a different demographic than yourself.  At the very least, I'd consider a framework like Bootstrap that's been tested and optimized to hell and back.

5) The copy can obviously change, and the point about being careful when calling things "Pro" is a good call.  We should probably change that to something more politically correct before it goes live.

6) In regards to the monochrome Wilber (please don't start throwing stones), Wilber is an awesome mascot/logo, but his current version is extremely dated.  With giving Gimp a new visual style, I think Wilber also needs a more modern makeover to appeal to a wider audience.

The way I see it, Gimp's web future has two choices-

a) Keep appealing only to users who already use Gimp and come for information/news/etc.  This option doesn't increase usage- it only informs existing users.

b) Put some proper marketing behind this fantastic product, and push it to mainstream users who want a Photoshop alternative.  This option showcases it's features and benefits to potential users while also delivering information to existing users.  

Personally, I think it's time Gimp stood up and kicked a little ass.  The product is ready..  Now we just have to show the world what it can do.

Mike Finch

On Tuesday, March 6, 2012 at 11:34 AM, Damian Zalewski wrote:

On 2012-03-06 16:29, gespertino gmail com wrote:
Hi Mike.
It's a very nice design. I liked it a lot and I'd like to see that design landing in
Just a few comments:
- Typography: That's Helvetica, isn't it? If that's not a freely available webfont I guess we won't be able to use it. And since it's 2012, rasterizing titles won't be an option ;-)
What about using a free webfont from Free fonts would make more sense than proprietary for a free software project.
- Maybe we should discuss what desktop theme to use for the screenshots. IMO the default gnome3 desktop would be more appropriate than the theme used (which is Ubuntu's and it isn't even the default theme in that system). This remark isn't about aesthetics, but making it easier to contributors to create new screenshots for the site. It would be more consistent if all of us use the same theme for that.
- I'm not sure about the monochrome Wilber. It's true that the current incarnations of the mascot will probably look too cartoonish for that design, but I don't think this version looks much better to replace it.
- I know it's example content, but be careful about some titles like "Professional Level Photo filters". Many users (and even developers) can argue that the current state of filters and tools aren't ready for high end editing, based on the lack of high bit depth processing. Since most of people seem to think that professional is necessarily high-end, this could start again endless flamewars. So I'd avise to avoid that kind of stuff.
- The brick wall looks really cool there, but why is it there? Is it example texture or is it supposed to say something about the product? (I hope it isn't a placeholder saying "bang your head here" :-p)

Apart from that I insist that it's a very beautiful design, well organized, easy to the eyes and with information hierarchies that feel just right.

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I personally think that you should take into account the following issues:
* use of grid system like 960gs
* graceful degradation of _javascript_ code
* html5 support
* maybe responsive design but first we should check how many visitors use mobile devices

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