by Christopher Paul on July 16, 2005

Ever since I registered this domain name and started posting to this blog, I’ve become really interested in design templates for web sites. I found this free template from Blogger.com the closest thing that they offer that represents me and my style but it is rather boring. Plus, I’m sure there are hundreds of blogs out there that share the same template. So yesterday, I started looking for new templates and now I’m really interested in wed design.

I started out at an Indian site that makes unique templates and offers them for sale. Once its sold, they no longer offer it to the public. I thought it was a really great idea and a cool way to get a one-of-a-kind look for a web site. But I didn’t find anything I liked and I don’t know how often they update their portfolio; I’ll keep looking but I might just buy one anyway because they are inexpensive at 40 to 60 US dollars.

But this morning, I did a Google search and found a lot more sites that sell web templates and now I’m salivating at the opportunity to buy one and make it work. Most of them, however, are for businesses that engage in e-commerce or have products/services to sell. It would be hard to modify the templates to work as a personal page – you can forget about blogs, too. But while searching, I did find that people make Blogger.com compatible templates (or skins as some call them). The help section of Blogger also listed a few other sites where I could find alternate templates to the ones they had commissioned for their service. Most of the sites have the suckiest skins. In fact, they were the suckiest bunch of sucks that ever did suck! Mostly kids posting pictures of their favorite celebrities and adding the Blogger code to make them work. I mean, COME ON!!! At least, put some effort or thought into it.

Anyway, all this has gotten me excited about createing my own template. I’ve got Dreamweaver and I’m thinking of getting Flash Studio to spice up the site and to get me learning something new (I know, I know… Flash on sites are just cheap ways to impress people with animation to add sophistication and relevance to a site even though it only upsets people when it takes forever to load and does nothing of real value). But I am not very creative. I kinda know what I like from a style perspective but don’t know anything about the rules of design or color – and I could use some help.

So what I need to do is look at other websites that “professional” design firms have done to get a better sense of what I should do. I don’t want (and won’t) steal anyone’s design but I’m looking for influences that will guide my creative side and help me create a good template I can use for my web spaces. Does anyone have a link to a design firm that they like? Or what about a link to a site they have done you find visually appealing?

Oh, and I like clean, bright, modern web sites – if anyone wants to know.

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