Greyscalegorilla.com

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Behind The Scenes: Greyscalegorilla Redesign 69 Comments


You’ve probably seen our new design for Greyscalegorilla by now, but I wanted to show you some of the ideas and thoughts we put in to it. We thought a lot about how people use the site, and how to best make GSG more usable, beautiful, simple, and discoverable.

Discoverability

The main goal for this design was to make the site more discoverable. With 222 tutorials over five years, it was getting hard to find everything. There were dozens of relevant tutorials and posts that could help, but they were buried in a blog structure. Blogs are great for seeing what’s new on the site, but not for finding and discovering some of its hidden gems. We concentrated a lot of our effort on the new tutorial page that allows you to filter and find what you’re looking for on one dynamic page, without pagination or a ton of scrolling.

gsglogoface

New Branding

The blog has grown over the last few years. Greyscalegorilla is now a real company with five employees. It’s not just me anymore. This heavily fueled the updated look. I wanted a site that we all could be proud of and that represented the entire company. Mostly, it was the logo and branding. I’m admittedly not the best designer, so until now the site brand guide consisted of “Use Gotham or Helvetica for everything!” and “Maybe we should try adding orange?” I wanted something more sophisticated, recognizable, and fun to represent the site.

gsglogoscript

I looked around for help and ended up hiring Jeremiah and Danny to brand the site and help establish a look that would represent the entire company and give Greyscalegorilla the brand it deserves. My main rule was, “I want a logo that I would be proud to wear on a t-shirt,” and they definitely delivered with their beautiful, new custom logo and mark (pictured above).

We Want To Help

Overall, I hope the site is more useful for you. I want the site to get out of your way when you’re reading or learning, and then offer help when you need it. We still have a few more things planned for this new look, but I sure am glad to get this out and see people use it. Thanks so much to everyone who helped including Dave who worked hard to get this new design up and working.

City Kit
HDRI Studio Pack

Comment Rules

This is a friendly community. Please treat everyone with respect. We don't all have to agree, but we do have to be nice. Criticism is fine, but rude comments and name calling will be deleted. Use your real name and don't be spammy. Thanks for adding to the conversation.

69 Comments

  1. Grant

    yeah, definitely! this blog structure is better than the old one.

    Reply
    • Ralph

      Very nice all the way around. And thanks for all the help over the years.

      Reply
  2. Karl @ Studio Mint

    Sweet stuff! Like the new site – especially the logo and avatar. A bit tooooo much row spacing for my taste (comments gets kinda hard to read with all that white blank space). And maybe a bit to large font size for me as well. Thanks for all your great work and inspiration!

    Reply
  3. Stevie

    I’m not sure that white as main color is the right decission. Think of all these hard working eyes looking after a working day on this page.

    Reply
    • blah

      agreed, white is not the way to go. im sure theres a “dark” wordpress theme on its way. the glare is just too much. not smart.

      Reply
      • Chaz

        I don’t mind white. But maybe just dial back the amount of white space? Seems like I have to scroll

        forever

        to read

        things…

        Reply
      • clement

        I agree on that, i have a plugin for firefox that kind of darkens the page but its a bit tricky on some pages (colorific)…a dark theme (by default ?) would be really appreciated, as i’m sure everybody on here as already too much “screen bronzing”.

        Other than that, nice to see you have made your way with your business.
        Your clean and straightforward tutorials have always motivated me to get further in c4d, which is a great piece of software…
        I’m no webdesigner, but it’s the first time i see that banner depth effect, quite cool !
        See you

        Reply
        • clement

          Just to say actually the colorific plugin for firefox works perfectly fine with the site to darken, the interface of it is weird since last update (far from being explicit) but you can find your way in it…

          Reply
      • giangianni

        yeah…it’s cool but all that white is a bit too strong especially at night, and that’s when I really get a chance to explore the site so…since it’s GREYscalegorilla…why not darken it a bit?

        Reply
    • Terry Ranson

      I have to agree. LOVE GSG but all white pages bother me. It’s not paper. Good organization. Bad white, very bad.

      Reply
  4. Árpád

    Looks great!
    One thing though, when replying to comments, the text is broken up too much on the mobile(iPhone) version of the site, one letter per row, it’s pretty hard to read. Funny how we got all critical just now :D

    Reply
  5. Nick from London

    Thanks Nick – I enjoyed the site before, and have taken a lot of inspiration from it, but you are right, this reorganisation has simplified things and defiantly made the tutorials a lot easier to find/scroll through – thanks for all your sharing, it’s really appreciated…

    Reply
  6. woody

    La verdad excelente, no tengo más que palabras de agradecimiento por todo lo que haces, gracias a vos aprendí y sigo aprendiendo cinema, trucos, consejos. Sobra pasión en lo que haces y admiro como eres! Gracias! desde argentina :)

    Reply
  7. bradenski

    The white is kind of intense. I want a GSG shirt. Although using that insignia as the favicon for the site isn’t really working–it’s really obscured.

    Reply
  8. Jono Kivex

    I think a little button at the top of the page that you can click that will load a new css style that changes the backdrop to a dark grey and the text white. I would certainly love to use that.

    Reply
  9. Porl

    Damn good! There are times that I feel guilty with the free ammunition that greyscalgorilla provides me. I am truly getting a free education in the use of these tools that to me, defy what I thought was ever possible with the digital manipulation of creative muse.

    You have done a fantastic job with the retooling of this beast of goodness and your designers and selves should be “well proud”.

    Reply
  10. Seany D

    How cool… you won America’s Funniest Homes Videos. The new site is epically better good work to everyone involved!

    Reply
  11. Anil

    I enjoyed the new look. Learned a lot in this site. I wonder how come you missed the milky orange in the design.

    Reply
  12. Erik

    At first… huge fonts…. (Ahem… but after resetting my browser zoom factor all came down…. site looks great! tuts are way more discoverable now! And i even found a bit of orange back!

    GSG.. the Orange Monkey Business!

    Reply
  13. Joel

    I love the white theme and the scroll effect on the top bar.

    Reply
  14. Syntheticmachine

    You should make some GSG shirts for the new logo, I’d wear one.

    Reply
  15. Maik

    Hey…

    the new design is realy nice…
    But i hae to agree all the other comments… With this brilliant white it is a little bit hard to read a text for a longer time.
    Also I would prefer, that the content would scroll with the menue (tutorial page). If i select tutorials of Simon Holmedal i have to scroll back to top, for seeing the videoposts.

    Reply
  16. Mars Cell

    Simply. Beautiful.

    I’ve waited long for your post here about the new design, so i can congratulate you to this really fresh new design.

    As i currently struggle by myself with a redesign of my small and personal blog-site, i can imagine how much work lies in this so simple, sleek looking design (maybe it’s the art of letting something look simple, though it was hard to accomplish).

    And i love this little detail with your banner graphics which “shift” perspective as thought the picture is behind a…. mmmhh… how to call it in english? … some sort of “looking gap” (doesn’t sound right, but i hope you know what i mean ;) )…

    Well, and a very belated congratulations that your city-kit made it to the avengers! (stumble upon it through Chris’ recent post which was linked to the original Blogpost). This is so amazing!!

    Okay, enough for now! ;)

    cheers and a have a nice weekend everybody!
    marscell

    Reply
  17. Vaibhav Bharadwaj

    This is best compared to the old ones!!! And love the new logo type & logo mark :D

    Reply
  18. jorge barrionuevo

    love the new logo and tutorial section!
    but home is tooo with….
    make me a sensation of empty or beta design…

    need some skinny lines in colour :)

    muchas gracias por todos tus tutoriales! abrazo desde argentina!

    Reply
  19. Dave Woodhull

    Hi Nick, I like to new site. Good luck with everything. Keep those great tuts coming.
    Dave

    Reply
  20. Todd VanSlyck

    The people have spoken. We demand a GSG t-shirt or we will hold an “Occupy GSG” protest outside your office.

    Reply
  21. dennis

    Congrats with the new site!
    But I also have to agree on the white… It hurts ;)

    Reply
  22. swaroop

    This design is so fresh and cool..! love it .. its a user friendly .>! Love the new logo..!
    :)

    Reply
  23. someguy

    It really looks like Abduzeedo. (www.abduzeedo.com)

    Reply
  24. Scott

    Big improvement, much easier to use and search. Love the new logo and branding.

    Reply
  25. Flavio Montiel

    Clean design, neat identity, really good work.

    Although, the tutorials page looks great, but i would make the filters work together. The way it is now, you can choose only one option, but i think the user should be able to go deep in the filtering.

    For example, animation tutorials, compatible with R11.5, by Nick. It’s a simple thing, sounds silly actually, but would boost usability up for sure.

    Reply
  26. Michael

    Hi,
    it is a great new outfit :) !
    Mr. Campbell enjoy your tour.

    greets from germany

    Reply
  27. Jamal Qutub

    I love the new design. It’s fresh, responsive and feels more clean. The new gorilla icon is cool too. Keep up the good work.

    Reply
  28. Gary

    Hey Nick and the Team Firstly thanks for all the help I’ve learned so much, Love the new look and I would love a T-shirt also….GSG Merchandise would be so Cool!!!

    Reply
  29. Terry Ranson

    Great design on the tutorials section. And as always, the best tutorials. But the white…. must… find… sunglasses…, my… eyes… ahhh

    Reply
  30. Luis

    I think it is a good idea to have a good looking brand, and that´s the best desition! Well done Nick! and if you always ask us about your brand you always be with us.
    Some tricks about the logo i can say a bit for example: the gorilla favicon doesn´t understand, the master suggest that a good logo is the best when the small one is readable, that´s becuase some time the logo ends in a coin, in a pin, in a pen so on, etc….
    I love your strategy for us, stay tune with us and identity is part of this.
    Congrats for your people!
    With regards.
    Luis

    Reply
  31. Marco

    Great simple and clean design but more than this I think you made a really nice work on logo and lettering. In few years you became one of my daily-site-visit and is always a pleasure to see what you post!!
    Keep on, guys!!

    Reply
  32. Maxworth

    howdy, new site is great. a few suggestions on the blog side of things:
    1. above the comments should have a button to jump to the comment fields.
    or place the comment box below the post, not below aaaaaaaaaal the comments.

    2. Main Menu rollovers? i hear teeth grinding when I rollover and nothing happens.
    They feel that hard. :P

    Chrome (25.0.1364.160) user.

    Good work guys and thanks for taking the time with the tutorials.

    Reply
    • Dave

      Thanks for the specific feedback, I could see both of these suggestions working well.

      Reply
  33. Quite often, GSG is one year ahead. White is one of those things.
    Keep it WHITE Nick !
    And a white t-shirt for me please…?

    Reply
  34. Robo

    Nice job on the re-branding! I would support a GSG t-shirt but make sure it is on a vintage hipster T. :)

    Reply
  35. Mancel

    Danny Jones is such a great designer. Nice collab pick.

    Reply
  36. Alexander Gelin / AG Visualisierung

    I find the new logo great!

    Reply
  37. Steve Joseph

    REALLY digging the new look and design! The gorilla is an elegantly awesome genius in disguise! ;)

    Reply
  38. Erik Jensen

    Wonderful redesign guys. All around awesome!

    Reply
  39. Lars Petersen

    Really really nice! But please redesign the “Buy”-Button in the Store! It’s horrible!

    Reply
  40. The new website is a mess. Is impractical, unusable and so goddamn ugly. It is a shame for a design company.

    Reply
  41. Adrien

    I love Greyscalegorilla, and your new branding and website are wonderful.

    I particularly like the thin banner at the top of pages, and the way they change each time we visit the website.

    To be honest, I was just a little bit disappointed by the use of white as main color. Your previous color palet gave you more personality I think.

    But apart from that, it’s perfect.

    Bye !

    Reply
  42. Logan Affleck

    Hi! The new site look is fantastic! I really like how the top border changes every once in a while, and I like the white, clean look.

    I would have to agree with some of these people, though. The site feels oddly spaced, and I need to scroll a lot, so it makes it hard to read stuff. Also, I would like to add that I tried to find the “Free Model” stuff in the store… and it wasn’t there. Then, it took me a while after realizing the absence of a search bar (in the Store portion under the banner) to find the SEARCH portion of the website.

    I’d like to add a little happiness to the end, here. I loved how visual the search was. It felt fluid and easy. I want to congratulate Nick, and the rest of the staff on their successful launch of the new web design. I know it takes a lot of work. Finally, I would like to point out that I like the color scheme a lot better than the older one. The white makes everything fresh, and the little bit of orange at the bottom is a nice touch. Plus, the bottom bar is nice for jumping back to the blog, as there is no “BLOG” labeled button (it took a while to realize you just hit the GSG thing on the top left. )

    See you all later! Goodbye!

    Reply
  43. Arafat Ibrahim

    Love the fact that the site was designed in HTML5 thus making it very responsive on other devices and not Just a Computer thumbs up GSG

    Reply
  44. John Slaughter

    luv’n that monochromatic monkey! looks sweet!

    Reply
  45. Steve Joseph

    Hey Nick,

    I left my comment before saying how stoked I was to see the new site, design and the awesome gorilla. One thing is striking me as odd though. If “Discoverability” is one of the main goals in the redesign shouldn’t there be some type of social media links to help push the tutorials and the products deeper into the webosphere?

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Comment Rules

This is a friendly community. Please treat everyone with respect. We don't all have to agree, but we do have to be nice. Criticism is fine, but rude comments and name calling will be deleted. Use your real name and don't be spammy. Thanks for adding to the conversation.