- Paperback: 384 pages
- Publisher: New Riders; 1 edition (November 25, 2006)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 0321410971
- ISBN-13: 978-0321410979
- Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 0.8 x 9.1 inches
- Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
- Average Customer Review: 70 customer reviews
- Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,128,576 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Transcending CSS: The Fine Art of Web Design 1st Edition
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From the Back Cover
As the Web evolves to incorporate new standards and the latest browsers offer new possibilities for creative design, the art of creating Web sites is also changing. Few Web designers are experiences programmers, and as a result, working with semantic markup and CSS can create roadblocks to achieving truly beautiful designs using all the resources available. Add to this the pressures of presenting exceptional design to clients and employers, without compromising efficient workflow, and the challenge deepens for those working in a fast-paced environment. As someone who understands these complexities firsthand, author and designer Andy Clarke offers visual designers a progressive approach to creating artistic, usable, and accessible sites using transcendent CSS. In this groundbreaking book, you'll discover how to implement highly original designs through visual demonstrations of the creative possibilities using markup and CSS. You'll learn to use a new design workflow, build prototypes that work well for designers and all team members, use grids effectively, visualize markup, and discover every phase of the transcendent design process, from working with the latest browsers to incorporating CSS3 to collaborating with team members effectively. "Transcending CSS: The Fine Art of Web Design": Uses a visual approach to help you learn coding techniques Includes numerous examples of world-class Web sites, photography, and other inspirations that give designers ideas for visualizing their code Offers early previews of technical advances in new Web browsers and of the emerging CSS3 specification
About the Author
Andy Clarke is an internationally known speaker, designer, and consultant focusing on creative, accessible Web development. Andy is passionate about design and passionate about Web standards, bridging the gap between design and code. He regularly trains designers and developers in the creative applications of Web standards. Andy has written articles for A List Apart Magazine and contributed to the CSS Zen Garden. Outside of his studio, Andy is a member of the Web Standards Project.
Author, instructor, and Web designer Molly E. Holzschlag has written over 30 books on Web design and development. She’s been coined "one of the greatest digerati" and deemed one of the Top 25 Most Influential Women on the Web. Molly is also Group Lead of Web Standards Project and frequent lecturer on Web design and development around the world.
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I will admit that 'transcending CSS' was read in conjunction with two other CSS books: 'Beginning CSS' by Simon Collison and 'CSS Mastery' by Andy Budd. However, it was 'transcending CSS' that sealed the gap and created a bridge with the first two books. It was almost as if each author had unwittingly wrote their book with the others in mind; they make a great series in CSS instruction. I strongly recommend that if you are completely new to CSS, you try reading Collison first or something comparable to basic CSS.
This book has amazing visuals that help motivate both designers and developers to use CSS as a creative tool. The technical content is properly structured and explained with 'everyday' dialog. It's also a great resource for browser tips, designer sites, and various tutorial links.
If you are more of a visual person, you may find some sections on inspirational techniques a bit redundant, especially after your brain has switched into tech-mode by practicing the CSS exercises. However, I considered this good training. It's overwhelming being bogged down with too much tech in the beginning.
All in all, I found this book well worth the time and money.
It remains one of the few technical books I have read from cover to cover, without skipping around to garner specific bits of information.
Being a creative person from the print world who made the transition to the web, I've had a hard time finding any sort of resource on the creative process of Web design -- which I find sort of strange. Any book on print design focuses on the creative process and spends very little time talking about applications or operating systems. Yet when it comes to Web design, it's all code and browser compatibility.
I suppose there is a reason for this. Print design has its roots in the fine arts and tends to be very visual while Web design emerged from programming and tends to be highly technical. It's basically the old "right brain" vs. "left brain" fight. So, how do we meet in the middle?
I thought I had found my answer in The Zen of CSS Design, but it fell short of my expectations. While it was good for creative inspiration, it ended up being a gallery of advanced CSS techniques without much explanation behind either the creative or technical process.
Now, with the release of the follow-up to The Zen of CSS Design, I've got my answer: Transcending CSS, The Fine Art of Web Design by Andy Clarke. This beautifully designed book is about design and not markup, and assumes that you already know about XHTML, CSS and Web standards. It goes over designing from the content out, finding inspiration, establishing a workflow, creating wireframes and prototypes, and working with grids and the box model -- allowing both sides of your brain to work together in harmony. It's about time!
Apart from a core group of "standardistas", the field of web design is still a divided camp--graphic designers who cling to WYSIWYG editors and claim they "can't do HTML", and coders who (though technically adept with markup and programming languages) lack the most basic knowledge of the principles of visual design, color, typography, and the like.
Andy's book goes a long way towards fostering the development of a truly professional discipline of web design, one wherein its practioners are well versed in aesthetic theory, confident in their creativity, and technically capable of creating functional, accessible, and durable web content. This book is also an engaging read, as Andy's wit and energy shines through his writing. (Andy's presentations are immensely popular on the design conference circuit.)
"Transcending CSS" is a must-have for your web design bookshelf, as indispensable as Dan Cederholm's Bulletproof Web Design: Improving flexibility and protecting against worst-case scenarios with XHTML and CSS and Web Standards Solutions: The Markup and Style Handbook (Pioneering Series) and Eric Meyer's Cascading Style Sheets: The Definitive Guide, 2nd Edition.