PLEASE NOTE: These are my suggestions that I have in mind, but please show me original ideas based on the websites I have attached below. My cartoony style idea is a good start but if that doesn't quite work for what you have in mind I'd rather see your original ideas than nothing at all.
I want the website to be a resource for home studio musicians that need help improving their productions. It should have an aura of confidence and fun.
The front page is the main page to start with:
I have a lot of in-depth guides that would then be shown in order on the home page.
Example: I have a guide on buying recording equipment, another on setting up a studio, and another for recording instruments.
These guides would be shown on each block of content down throughout the home page, similar to how this page looks:
The user interface that I have in mind for the website is inspired in part by Problogger: https://problogger.com/ and the way they set up their start here and resource pages.
I would love to have cartoon characters created to portray each of these guides, similar to the cartoon character on
http://www.DrumMixToolkit.com and the avatar I've attached.
CATEGORIES AND CARTOON IDEA
I've attached an example of my cartoon avatar that would be good to use for the following categories:
Shopping for Equipment
-Not sure how you can make it look like he's shopping for gear but maybe have him sit by a computer and have the screen show a cartoon version of Amazon.com (I've attached a screenshot but you can make it much simpler).
Another way would be to have him by a computer and do a thought bubble that has equipment and question marks?
Setting up a recording studio
-Avatar with a tool belt (and maybe the Drum Mix Toolkit http://www.drummixtoolkit.com PSD attached), setting up speakers on a desk and installing acoustic treatment.
Recording Tips category
-Avatar plugging a cable into a microphone that’s on a stand over a drum kit. Around him are other mics on stands pointed at amplifiers
-Avatar sitting with his back against the audience by a desk mixing, maybe have the blender from Step By Step Mixing on the desk. A few different speakers look like they’re blaring music between him. There’s a giant screen that looks like it has a mixing DAW open.
-Same concept as mixing but in this case, the avatar is maybe wearing a Jedi hood and a lightsaber
Running Live Sound
-Avatar wearing a t-shirt plugging in equipment at a live venue. Dirty speakers, broken beer bottles, torn carpet.
COLORS AND VISUAL STYLE
I think finding the right combination of the blue from my current logo and a good orange/yellow/amber with a light gray and white would be a great palette to work from.
I also want bold sans serif typography that's easily readable and simple. I don’t want squiggly lines and fancy fonts and I like big fonts for easy readability.
I'm a big fan of comics and cartoons and I like the website to portray usefulness without taking itself too seriously :)
HOWEVER, I would love to see any other design ideas that you think would fit.