I am a Graphic Designer / Consultant with over 7 years experience in the professional media arena. I have experience in all manner of design and marketing materials, including and not limited to Magazine Layout, Brochures, Business Cards, One Sheets, Media Kits, Newsprint Publications, Ebooks, Flash Websites, Graphs, Maps, UI Elements, Icons, Logos, Form Data and Design, Electronic Prepress Files, Photography and Photo Manipulation and Correction and more.
My skills include the following:
Illustrator, Photoshop, Quark XPress, InDesign, Dreamweaver, Acrobat, Flash, Fireworks, Microsoft Office, OpenOffice.org, FileMaker Pro, Wordpress, HTML, CSS & more.
My website is:
I've always wanted to make a notable contribution to an open source project, especially one as good as OpenOffice.org, so we'll see how it goes then!
My thoughts on the new icons and Start Center.
Ever since Oracle took over Sun and OOo 3.2.1 was announced, there has been a buzz about the new colorless icons. Most of the feedback I've seen has been negative since, let's face it, Oracle is breaking a widely used and recognized color format in favor of colorless icons, all of which say "ODF" and look very reminiscent of Adobe's file icon set (Which are, by the way, themselves color coded). While they do look clean, and perhaps more professional, than the old icon set, they add nothing to the usability or accessibility of the suite. In fact, they seem to do quite the opposite, forcing you to squint to see what is what. Without the adjacent text to explain what each icon is, most people might be completely lost, particularly on Windows machines where extensions for "known file types" are hidden by default. I appreciate that Oracle is taking OOo under their wing and putting any effort to release new versions and make the look and feel of the product more their own, but I do question the wisdom of colorless icons, and I also question the effort put into the new start center. In my humble opinion, the new start center, and icons, look rushed. Evidence of this can be found not only in the very sparse look of the start center and it's lack of color, but also in the minute details. Look, for instance, at the placement of the text next to the icons. They appear as if they were haphazardly thrown there. Also, on the Mac, the blue selection glow around the "box" that pops up when you hover over something kind of gets cut off. Look at the picture here:
Notice how the text and selection boxes line up perfectly, but the icons kind of float wherever. It's just kind of sparse and clunky, and I think even a light tinting of color would have been nice. I'll be the first to admit that past versions of OOo sometimes went way too far with the color and busy graphics, and I applaud Oracle for scaling it down a bit, but I kind of feel as though they may have scaled it down a bit too much. Time will tell whether this is a beginning or an end, but I feel that it is a beginning, and I encourage the Oracle team and all of the OOo community to keep moving forward.
To end on a positive note, I will say that I love the new "Gull Orb" thingy and the new, friendlier logo.