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Graphic Designers Rock

I've been spending a lot of time in GIMP the last few months. The more time I spend messing with pixels the more I admire graphic designers. I guess it's like most disciplines - you don't realise the expertise and difficulties involved until you have a go yourself. Now I love trying new things, and in the computer realm I usually take to things quite well. Graphic design however, engages that part of the brain technically referred to as "right brain". It seems in this area, I have room to grow.

Nonetheless I had a few wins tonight. After battling and thinking and looking and getting frustrated, I had another go at a header image for the new HRSoftWorks website tonight. Somewhat under the influence, I've finally come up with something I like. Ironically, this iteration took less time than I feel represents the effort involved. Anyhoo, enough rambling, on with the show.

This is the current iteration of the header:

Header original

Which I'm kinda liking. Finally I managed to translate ideas in my head to something on the computer screen. In particular, I like the fact I was able to incorporate one of my 4wd'ing photos! With that hurdle out the road however, I'm now faced with a dilemma. The above image is 172KB, which is too big. And look what happens when I compress it:

Header jpeg

I'm too close to the image - I can't bear to see the jpeg artefacts. The drop shadow on the H for example, and the muddy colours. What's a graphic amatuer to do? Believe me, I tried lots of compression configurations looking for a balance. I'm still looking.

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