Bernstein Webdesign
Its Making and Unmaking

During 2005-2006 I was in charge of conceiving the Bernstein Project, an international effort to bring about the integration of paper and watermarks databases into a single portal. During the project I developed a number of designs for the portal, the evolution of which is documented here, as an example in building and wrecking websites.


This was an extension of the design of the website presenting the project. As the first page of the portal it didn't channel in an obvious way to the existing resources and was probably too verbose.

v1-list Portal Beta  ·  Project website


This is a transitional design alleviating the perceived drawbacks of the previous one, yet maintaining some graphical elements.


Splash screen

A new graphical design has been developed. It is constructed around essentials: name and description of project, resources available, logo and captivating illustration, language versions.

v5-flowers 1  ·  2  ·  3


I wanted a more striking design, so I made one characterized by a very strong black-white-red contrast and seemingly broken layout. The graphical elements are however aligned in regard to each other and positioned so as to create approximate 2/3 proportions.

v8-photo 1  ·  2


While the previous designs where all the first page of the portal, this proposal introduced a comprehensive template for all the website's sections.

v10-home 1  ·  2  ·  3  ·  4  ·  5  ·  6  ·  7  ·  8  ·  9  ·  10  ·  11  ·  12


The template is perfected: reintroducing pictures makes it more happy, cutting the banner height more economical, while providing unlimited liberty how to design the body of the page. The visual trademarks of the project - the logo, the pictures and the red and white livery - are maintained.

v11-catalog 1  ·  2  ·  3  ·  4  ·  5


None of the above designs was good enough for the project members, so they decided they need after all to hire a professional. Here is the adopted final webdesign of Project Bernstein. If anything else, it exudes a profound spirit of disinterestedness, a sad conclusion to an European collaboration.

v12-final 1  ·  2  ·  3

A discussion of the technical and graphical issues, as well as the html code of all prototypes can be found here.