look and feel subtlety

| | Comments (4)

Apple Camp tweeked.

Please bear with me on this one. It seemed like an interesting observation, and a good example of something- though I'm not exactly sure what. I'm reviewing the Apple Camp pages at the Apple web site. When the page opened, I was surprised to see a page that looked distinctly non-Apple. The logo was there, but I felt like it was lying. Since the page is for a camp aimed at kids from 8 to 12, I would assume a slightly different approach from Apple. Add the reality that the page really has to appeal to parents, and I get another another twinge of disbelief.

Realize, too, that my disbelief and discomfort happened almost instantaneously when the page opened. That's the power of very simple, very subtle design decisions and execution. Here's the kicker. The page as it appears above is my version after I corrected a few glaring errors that I couldn't take my eyes off of. The real page is the one below. Can you see the difference? Slight, really.

Apple Camp.

Perhaps you'll like the second, "real" Apple version best. That's fine- there's certainly no right or wrong, unless you can agree with my design dialect and speak with the same accent. The over all design seemed different for Apple, but I couldn't get my eyes off of the off-center logo and "Camp" text on the sign. Then I noticed the grain of the "wood" runs across the sky between the sign and the post. And by the time the page had been up for a second or two, the dullness -the depressing quality- of the colors started to have a negative impact. In the upper image I corrected things to my own satisfaction, pretty much just so I could understand what was going on.

Was it just too early in the day?


Jamie said:

My first reaction was it looked very Twitter-ish in its design style. All the greens and blues, plus the simple shapes of the trees.

dave said:

If you want to experience the site in its natural setting, Jamie, it's at http://www.apple.com/retail/camp/

The twitter connection is a great observation. Do you have the same response to my version and the Apple version?

Adam said:

I immediately noticed the lack of saturation in the Apple version, and I became sullen very quickly looking at the original. It's hard to believe that they let those wood grains cross the gap between the sign and post. I didn't notice the off-center logo and text until I read the remainder of your post, however. I can only guess that the designer was trying to center the logo and text "to the eye" in an attempt to compensate for the wonky shape of the sign. Those wood grains, though -- sheesh. I realize the wood grains are consistent with their camp theme, playing with the convergence of outdoorsy and tech -- but I would have lost the grain entirely.

dave said:

Glad you saw it too Adam. I was beginning to think that I may need medication. Wonky describes the sign shape perfectly; maybe it has significance in the California state park system?

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