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Friday, May 7, 2010

Ink Blot #06: 960gs/web design sketchpads

I just learned of the 960 gs (grid system) that is apparently a new standard for web layout, the 960 being the number of pixels in width on the layout. As I have many Technoscribe followers, I've learned that many web/graphic designers like to start with rough ideas on paper, with blank sketchbooks or graph paper as the grid system of choice.

I scoured the internet to try to find notebooks or sketchpads that have a ruling specifically designed for this 960 grid system, so it would be ideal for web designers to sketch layouts of websites, but alas I came up empty. I thought Google had everything!! I did find this website, 960.gs, which explains what 960gs is and has some pdf templates you can download to print on your own paper. What I'm really looking for though is a bound notebook or sketchpad, and I can't seem to find any. Maybe I should make some!!

There are several sketchpad products I do carry on my website, but since I'm not a web designer, I am unsure how beneficial they would be for someone looking to sketch out a design based on the 960gs layout.

The Clairefontaine GraFit sketchpads are great products, 90g paper that is great for use with fountain pens, pencils, even watercolor, but they are blank sheets.


Rhodia dotPads are new products that have the same 5/5 (5mm square) ruling as graph paper, but instead of having bold lines shooting all over the page, it just has small dots to indicate the points of intersection that would normally be on graph paper. It allows for some guidance, but without being as obtrusive as graph lines.


Then there is normal graph paper, with which most of us are familiar.

I'm really trying to answer two things:

#1) Is there an interest among graphic/web designers for notebooks/sketchpads with a layout designed specifically for use with 960gs?

#2) Do any notepads like this exist out there currently, and if not, would you want there to be?

Link to YouTube for iPhones and full-screen viewing.

4 comments:

  1. Hey Brian,

    When we do website wire-frame sketching here we don't spend too much time fussing about pixel perfect placement of elements on the page. We are really just looking for a flow of the page, how the white space works within the page, and if it makes sense for good human usability.

    I personally do all my wire-frame sketching on a basic "Tops" top tear lined letter size legal style pad. The lanes help with positioning but do not hinder the artistic process.

    Once several sketches are done we will sit down with them and come up with a couple good starts to go into digital form with a bit more care taken to the actual pixel layout.

    Thats our team's procees....

    ReplyDelete
  2. I agree that it's not sketched pixel-perfect, but I do like to get an idea of how a design could work in a 12, 16, etc. column layout. I bound a bunch of the print your own templates together and really like sketching on them. I would definitely be interested in a product like this. :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. I've purchased some wireframing pads from Konigi. They are fairly rudimentary - okay paper on chipboard backing. The paper is better than a big-box grid pad, but not premium design paper (bienfang marker paper) from what I can tell.

    Most often I use a variety of felt-tipped pens (sharpie pen), mechanical pencils (graphite and color leads), as well as some specialty japanese brush pens. Bleeding just goes with the territory.

    I prefer a vertical micro-perf tablet with a fold back cover. Can't wait to get my Rhodia dot pad.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I agree that it's not sketched pixel-perfect, but I do like to get an idea of how a design could work in a 12, 16, etc. column layout. I bound a bunch of the print your own templates together and really like sketching on them. I would definitely be interested in a product like this. :)

    ReplyDelete

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