Yesterday was my first “Learn Day“. I did only a tiny bit of client work (to fix a bug in a site), but otherwise spend the day learning and working on my personal websites. Overall I’d call the day a success. I really enjoyed it particularly because it was dedicated learning and not just casual learning.

For the learning side of things, I finished Hack Design Lesson Two. I learned some things about typography. I’ve realized that while typography isn’t an obsession of mine as it is for some people, I can definitely see the importance of it, and I want to continue to learn more. I’d love to have beautiful and smart typography in all of my work.

For the second portion of my Learn Day, I worked on BradyMower.com. I want that site to be a channel to attract potential clients and be a good center location for my personal projects and blog. So far so good, but I’ve got a lot of work to do.

I’m not thrilled with the theme I’m using, but I haven’t found another that I like better, so I’m sticking with the one I’ve got. I’m using a WordPress theme called “Best”, created by Blogging Experiment.

The first thing I did was brainstorm and create a few simple diagrams of the organization for my site. I think there is no need to spend a ton of time making really nice diagrams or wire frames, so the ones below are a little rough looking, but they get the job done and that is what is important.

SITE OUTLINE: the needs of my site.

20130223-133316.jpg

IDEAS FOR PORTFOLIO: a possible design of my portfolio, sub-portfolio, and project pages.

20130223-133427.jpg

A RELATIONSHIP DIAGRAM: how pages connect

20130223-133529.jpg

20130223-133511.jpg

COMPUTER MOCKUPS: I created a basic layout on my site to get an idea how it would look and function.

Brady Mower   PORTFOLIO

Brady Mower   Sub Portfolio

Brady Mower   Product Page

REVISED RELATIONSHIP DIAGRAM: having both a portfolio and sub-portfolio was just not right, so I created one portfolio with category filters up top.

20130223-133656.jpg

20130223-133739.jpg

Brady Mower   NEW PORTFOLIO

I put together a project page for one of my client projects, and for the most part I like it, but I don’t like how small the images are at the bottom. I think I will probably make those images full-size and stack them vertically. The small images just don’t provide enough detail to be informative.

I’m still not 100% sold on it all, but I decided that I would be better of to run with what I’ve got than to keep brainstorming and sketching something new. There comes a point when you just need to make a decision and go with it. I’m at that point with this, and I think in the end, it will come together nicely.

I’d say my first Learn Day was great. Having a day like this really motivates me to get my work done during the other days of the week. Plus, learning is important for anyone, no matter what their stage of life or career. Plus, its a great day to learn by doing. For now, Learn Day is a keeper.