Oh, I resisted adding to this thread but I couldn't help myself. The design and implementation of web sites is a large and complex topic, and despite this I can state my opinion simply: a well designed web site is one where the visitor is able to glean information quickly and easily. Anything that gets in the way of achieving this should be eliminated. Furthermore, the simplest solution is usually the best solution - simplicity is preferred to complexity. Clarity is preferred to confusion. One problem in achieving this is techno-creep - bells and whistles that may be cool but are not needed and in fact impede the visitor's ability to get at what the site really offers. Flash is one example - and I'm sure many will disagree with me - it is cool but slow. Another example is the infamous "splash" page - which adds a useless step to getting at a site. So, to underline, anything that gets in the way of the achieving the goal of a site should be eliminated, whether it be a hard-to-read font or an overly complicated navigation design.
A couple of non-photographic sites that are well designed are http://www.google.com
. Notice the simplicity of google and their resistance to increasing complexity over the years. Ronald Slabbers' site is also well designed, simple, and easy to use - he is a seasoned and talented graphical designer and know how to do this.
I have tried various web solutions over the years, and since I don't have the 1000s of dollars needed to hire soneone to design, implement, and maintain a superb web site I keep going back to http://www.pbase.com
which is simple, straight forward, and remarkably customizable using very simple menu driven tools. My web site is always a work in progress, but take a look: http://www.pbase.com/vglass
. One thing's for sure - visitors can easily get at my images and navigation is simple and straight forward.
Take a look at this site too: http://www.olafheine.com/
I always enjoy visiting this site because the images are cool and good - but I sort of like the set up, even though flash is used. Notice that it is clean and simple.
Just my thoughts.