Beautiful, efficient and quick-loading designer web graphics don’t come about by accident. Successful Internet imagery is the product of a craft that combines natural visual talents with graphic styling and knowledge of website design functionality. Effective web design binds know-how to show-how.
In the 2012 Occupational Outlook from the U.S. Bureau of Labor, the median pay for graphic designers is listed at $21.22 per hour (1). A Bachelor’s degree defines the entry-level education range. In 2012, total available jobs in graphic design topped 259,000. Most graphic design employees work in specialized design agencies, including:
AND Website graphic design.
Website Graphics Optimized For Superior Web Performance
When crafted perfectly, graphics website designs present such a beautiful and interactive display of color and imagery that the skill of the artist conceals the underlying education and SEO training that makes it all work as a single unit. But successful web imagery merely begins with vision and color blending. It always ends with optimized web graphics crafted to maximize the loading speed of your website.
Optimized designer web graphics take up less space on the server. They load quicker than standard images. They stir the imagination of the viewer. And in the end they move the visitor toward you business goals. The process is neither easy nor simple. It takes an expert in graphics website development.
Graphic optimization incorporates three primary processes:
Reduction in physical size
Reduction in the number of displayed colors
Reduction in the dots per inch that define the image resolution.
Trained website graphics designers understand and apply the principles and methodology of each process. Whether editing existing images or designing custom graphics, expert graphic designers know how to bring your website to life while retaining the expected and desirable loading speeds.
The Information Technology Division of Brookhaven National Laboratory defines the maximum desirable web image size as 150KB (2). They also counsel website graphics designers to limit images to gray-scale when possible. However, due to the speed of modern Internet connections, most sites now opt for extended use of color graphics.
Other tips that help designers reduce image load times include:
Thumbnail Links – Using gray-scale thumbnails as links to full-size full color images saves your visitor the download cost of images that do not peak their interest
Main Image Size – Limiting large images to 400-500 pixies helps increase loading speed while also reducing the need for screen scrolling
Thumbnail Descriptions – Including the main image’s file size in thumbnail captions gives the visitor an idea of loading time
Captions – Use captions to define what the viewer is seeing, what the image means to the site and to the viewer, and what the viewer should be looking to see in the image.