I am pretty stoked to do a first draft of the new site design. I have wanted to do something like this for the site for quite a while, but I have not had much opportunity other than quick jots on actual paper with a real-life pencil. Till now, that is (see below for more on that). You will note that there is a wavy line half down the drawing, denoting the separation between the header and footer of pages. Content for the site will go in the middle and flow from top to bottom. There are a few more variations on theme I want to try, but I am happy with this as a rough first draft.
As for how I created the above, I got to try Sketchbook Express on a Surface Pro. If you have spent anytime around me, you know that I have not been a big fan of the Surface RT. And as a work machine, I must confess my Pro leaves a lot to be desired in terms of general usability, especially if your physical keyboard, as mine has, starts acting up. To be perfectly honest, I want to love the Surface Pro. When I saw it first introduced, I was just as surprised as you are to find myself falling in love with what I saw on stage that day. Since then, Surface and I have had a stormy relation. I have all but given up on it, until this morning, that is. Once I put the proverbial pen to paper, and started using my Surface Pro as a digital art pad, did the truth of the device finally reveal itself to me. Up till now I had used Paper by 53 on my iPad mini, but I recently ran into some glaring omissions on their part that make it a fun diversion, but not something I will ever trust with my digital workflow beyond quick sketches. Being disillusioned but optimistic, I thought I’d give the ol’ girl one more try, and see what my Surface Pro could do if I gave her a honest-to-goodness chance at redemption. And in the first few hours of use, even with the free version of Sketchbook which lacks support for layers, it is an impressive one-two punch. I was able to frame out the below in about 30 minutes while drinking coffee this morning. And already I cannot wait to use a trial version of Sketchbook Pro to do a final rendering which I will then use as this site’s new design.