Several people viewing my site have pointed out to me that the lettering in the balloons and on the tabs at the top of most pages appears “jaggy.” As soon as it was pointed out, I knew they were right, and soon after I figured out why it hadn’t occurred to me sooner that this wouldn’t look very good, even though I’ve been staring at the evidence for months. See the example above on the left side for what I mean, and enlarged letters below that for an even better look.
You see, in my work as a computer letterer, I WANT to have lettering with crisp edges, not blurred ones. Of course, the difference is that I’m working at a much higher resolution (pixels per inch), so even if the lettering were done in a similar way, the edge tiling, which follows the vertical and horizontal edges of individual pixels, would be much smaller and less obvious.
Photoshop provides ways to avoid the harsh edges of type and other objects, but in my usual work, I turn them off, as I don’t want that. In programs which offer a “smooth text” view, I also turn that off. But when designing for the web, with low resolution images intended to be seen on-screen, tools like Photoshop’s “smooth text” option are just perfect. Samples above on the right have been created using that, and they do look much better on-screen.
Over the next few days I’ll be revising my graphics images that way. At the moment only the upper right balloon on my main page is done, as a sample. The rest will be replaced as I do them. Hopefully the jaggies will be gone by next week. Thanks to those of you who pointed out this web-design blunder…I’ll do it right from now on, promise. And if you notice any other design goofs, please let me know.