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  • Sebastian Penix

Building Lokorio: Part 4

Tuesday, July 18

I’ve decided to change the design of the homepage. The last design felt extremely basic, 2-dimensional, and just never fully clicked. So now, I’m attempting to spice it up. I want to add more depth, texture, and movement.

I’m stuck at a point of figuring out how I want to encapsulate the idea of Lokorio. This is essential to pick my imagery, colors, and overall theme to be used throughout the design. It feels like a never-ending process of trial-and-error, as most things I try out look okay, but don’t fully click. I’ve never named a baby, and this is much less important, but I figure it’s the same sort of feeling as trialing thousands of possibilities to name a baby.

To help piece things together, I’ve created a brainstorming doc. My ideas are free flowing, so I find it important to mark down my various thoughts and use them as a reference down the line. I started with compiling various color pallets that I could pull from.

Sample of different color palettes

For this project, I’m using new technology as my point of inspiration. A few weeks ago, I came across Midjourney, an AI photo generator tool. How it works is you type in a prompt of anything you can think of, then it generates pictures that respond to your prompt. The possibilities are endless and it kind of feels like magic.

At first, I was using this tool recreationally, but figured I might as well use it as a way to better visualize the ideas in my head. Since Lokorio is a documentation space, I started basing my prompts off things related to documentaries; cameras, journals, typing, etc. Here were some initial renderings it gave me.

Sample of AI generated images of cameras, books, and stationary tools

As you can tell, I started with blue and orange coloring. I really liked the way they turned out, so I decided to stick with those colors. One thing off the list.

I also found the cameras particularly interesting, so I want to include them within the site somehow. I haven’t figured that out yet, but I’ll get there.

For anyone who was no experience with web design, one of the toughest parts of creating a website is making it responsive. Responsiveness means the website is able to adjust so that it looks normal on all screen sizes (computer, tablet, phone, etc.). So essentially for every section, you need to design it at least three separate ways to accommodate for different screen sizes. It may seem like a minor thing, but it drives me crazy and consumes way too much time.

After starring too much at the same thing, my creative wheels have come to a halt.

Wednesday, July 19

I’ve picked up today where I left off yesterday. Taking some time away from looking at the website gave my brain time to recharge and look at things with a fresh perspective.

I think I finally settled on a cover image after much internal deliberation. The cover image serves as the first impression for Lokorio, so it’s a step that is particularly important.

The image came from Midjourney with the prompt “person filming with camera in direction of the screen, outdoors with mountains, *wes anderson style, blue and brown chalky colors”. Here's how it turned out:

*I’m a big fan of Wes Anderson’s aesthetic, so I included that in my prompts to see how things would work.

Person in an orange suit standing behind a camera in the mountains

This picture seemed to capture the feeling that Lokorio is about. A centered figure (possibly me?) documenting the environment around himself. The colors are soothing and serve as a palette to use for the rest of the site.

Color palette used for Lokorio branding

After having the image picked, I needed to manipulate it to get it into a high-resolution format. I’m far from a digital image expert, so this step took me hours to figure out and cost me $30 for a software program, but I eventually got it to the resolution that I needed.

The final step (for now) was adding my own twist on it. I figured I could add the “Lokorio” title into the environment of the image, so I added the letters into the ridge line of the mountains. Similarly, I added my name as an etching in the dirt below the man (further giving the impression that I am the person, but who knows).

After tossing it in the site, here’s how it currently looks:

The site is still looking very basic, and lacking depth and movement, but that’s the next step of this process. It’s nice to already have a new look, which I find much better than the original one.

Thursday & Friday

The rest of the week was spent setting up other “hidden” details on the site. I added a favicon, which is the image that appears next to the site name in the browser tab. I thought this was a good spot to include the camera, so I used that image.

I also needed to work through steps to maximize SEO, such as setting up page titles and meta descriptions. These features both provide information that help websites get found and appear in search results. It’s all back-end work that cannot be seen by the user but are essential to drive traffic to the website.

As far as the design goes, I’m far from being fully content and know there’s so much potential for me to continue adding in new features, but I have a better feeling about the foundation now. I’m now within a few weeks of the August 4th deadline, so it’s just a matter of adding as much as I can until then. However, regardless of what I have, it will still be published.

The sooner you begin, the sooner you start the path of improvement. -Tiago Forte

That’s all from this week.


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