San Francisco, California

Anxious punk rock web design

Whenever I’m nervous or upset I tend to pull up my sleeves and throw myself at the ol’ website. Out of pure anxiety I’ll change the fonts over an evening of frantic typing, or I’ll bump up the font size with a glass of wine. Over a weekend I’ll get frustrated and take out all my anger on the poor navigation, or I’ll tackle responsive bugs and finally confront my one true nemesis: my homepage (that dang page will forever be undergoing a redesign because I’ll never figure out how to say hello properly).

This week I made some of the biggest changes in years though; I’m using a lot of weird new type choices now—using Ayer, for starters. I updated the navigation, removed my projects, fixed all the tags on every post (which I’m still deeply hmmm-ing about) and I made a splashier redesign of the newsletter.

My goal with this shake-up was to try and make the design of it all feel and sound more like, well, me. The visuals had to mimic the voice and tone of this bumbling, curious, and open-eyed writer that I sometimes find in myself. And I wanted it all to be fun! On desktop, the cursor is now a copy of the Final Fantasy 7 clicker, and the background on larger displays copies that same gradient that stretches across the screen.

The most punk rock thing about this design though? I removed the footer.

A lot of patterns we see on the web go unquestioned. If people want to go and find more writing of mine at the end of a post then they can go ahead and do that themselves—they don't need a giant list of entries begging with them, pleading for them to continue clicking at the end of a piece. I don’t need social links everywhere so that people will share things, if a thing is good enough then people will want their friends to read it.

And the same goes for the footer. I think folks will scroll back up to the navigation or swipe back to read more from the archives if they’re so inclined. But will I keep desperately nudging them to do so? Nope! I trust the reader to find their own way around without me constantly hawking for them to click things.

In fact, this website is not optimized for clicking at all. And that’s okay.