OTHER ITA SITES:
Colors for Your Website
Oh Yes ..Colors! There are hot ones, cool ones, earthy colors, spiritual colors and every other shade in the rainbow! What colors should you use for your website?
Though color combinations that would work for many decorating ideas are pleasing to the eye, it doesn't mean they will work on the web.
The reason is that the combinations you use have to serve a twofold purpose: They should impart a general theme to your website and, more importantly, make it easy for your visitors to see and read.
The very high contrast between white and black, having opposite locations on the chromatic scale, is good for standard paper books but not for the Web! A good choice of colors as a tool in the distribution of information, is something that should be given serious consideration.
The printed media's classical scheme of black lettering over a white background doesn't work well for Web content. Certain colors produced by the glowing phosphor of PC monitors are very intense and tend to assault the eyes with their potency, such as when you look at snow in bright sunshine.
The above reason is why many folks will print an eBook to study it: They can't take the "white assault" from most monitors.
Application programmers and savvy web designers are discovering this harmful quality of monitors and are compensating by making the backgrounds of their websites an off white/gray.
You can try this for yourself: read a page with an absolute white background and then the same page with a very light gray or pastel background. See the difference?
The general look and color combination of your website should be pleasing and related to the interests of your visitors however, the areas devoted to text should not strain their eyes. As an example, I was at a hardware forum and somebody had written a couple of bright fluorescent orange lines on a medium gray background; it was about all I could take! Just looking at the 2 lines of text to read them was painful.
Another example of a bad choice for body copy is a dark font over a dark background because it overtaxes the eyes to make out the text. The same reason absolute white is harmful applies to white lettering over a black background.
White without a small amount of compensating color is very stressful on the eyes. If you ever spend any time at a website that causes such irritation, you'll lose focus and get tired on account of the strain of reading.
All the elements of your website decoration should conspire to make the visit a pleasant one for your customers. Designing and building a successful website should take into consideration all the design elements to keep from physically irritating your visitors.
by Francisco Aloy
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