Site Redesign Launched

This morning, we launched a site redesign. We’ve had it in the works for a couple of months; Taylor Garms of Lacheln Designs, whose family contributes posts as The Garms Family, designed new graphics that retain our familiar layout and color scheme but add a new level of class and elegance. 

It is a constant amidst change: Whenever we update our graphic design, something will not display correctly for someone. So if you have any feedback on the new design, and especially if you notice something that doesn’t display correctly, let us know in the comments!


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76 Letters to the Editor

Southern Gospel Journal welcomes letters to the editor. We will post the most thoughtful and insightful submissions. Ground rules: Don't attack or belittle groups or fellow posters, or advance heresies rejected by orthodox Christianity. Do keep comments positive, constructive, and on topic.
  1. So far, everthing looks good on an iPad.

    • Whew! Glad to hear it, because I don’t have any tablets to test on.

  2. Not sure if it’s the way it is supposed to be, but the font looks cracked/ faded. Maybe that is only a problem on our computer, though.

    Otherwise, it looks nice!

    • Are you speaking of the font for the headers, or the font for the main paragraphs?

      If the latter: I’m suspecting that it’s just inherent to the way the font looks. It is an unusual-looking font. If it’s hard to read for too many more people, I might need to switch it back to something standard and unremarkable (Arial/Verdana/etc.)

      • Everything looks clear to my old eyes on my large computer screen. The only thing that is strange is the small letter i dips down lower than the rest of a line of type. Assume that is just the font you’re using.

      • That’s odd – I’m not seeing that on my screen. Is anyone else seeing that?

      • I don’t notice it.

      • OK.

      • I know it’s not a mistake, only the font, but the lowercase i drops down lower than the other letters. I can make myself get use to it, but it does make it look slightly more casual and unusual to read. The design looks fine, just that letter bothers me everytime an i is used. You may decide to keep it. At least you don’t have to worry about other major news outlets copying your font, as it would surely be an issue in the New York Times. ha!

      • It’s not doing this on all computers – including not on mine. I’m puzzled over this one. Hopefully our resident font expert (Taylor of Lacheln) will drop by some time today and be able to offer more insightful commentary on the point.

      • The headers seem fine. We were referring to the font for the paragraphs. Maybe a darker gray would work? But that might detract from the design.

      • It’s the blackest black that black gets. 🙂 So if it looks light on your screen, it’s inherent to the font.

      • While the problem with the lowercase i may not be a problem on some computers, it is on others. I have tried with both Firefox on PC and Safari on Mac and it shows up the same way. Wish I didn’t bear that news. But it is an easy fix with a standard universal font like Arial. Plain, perhaps, but it’s the easiest to read for everyone. Lots of fonts look cool, but in the end it’s about no distractions and ease of reading.

      • Oh, I’m certainly open to considering switching back if it’s displaying oddly for too many people. But I’m going to wait to make any decisions until our resident font expert drops by and offers feedback.

  3. It looks great. Streamlined and classy.

  4. New design looks great. Like the posting day design. Keep on keeping up the good work Daniel.

  5. Looks great Daniel!

  6. Can’t think of anything right now, but give me a little time. I’ll find something to complain about. 🙂

  7. I like it! Looks good and classy! 🙂

    • Thanks, Scott!

      • Very nice Daniel. I like the fact you kept the (shadow singers as my youngest daughter called them) in there too.

      • Inside scoop: When I started talking with Lacheln about a graphics refresh, I said, more or less, “I’m open to seeing what you come up with everywhere else, but please keep the silhouettes!” 🙂

        To me, it captures so much of what I love about the genre!

  8. Looks great! A bit of a random question…is that silhouette based off of any group in particular? It looks a bit like the Kingdom Heirs, or even the Inspirations when they had Dallas Rogers.

    • Yes, it is … oh, and by the way, you nailed it with your second guess. It took my readers a LOT longer than that to figure it out when I first launched it.

      • Wow, that just made my day. I feel so smart right now haha!

      • Good! 🙂

  9. Daniel, I like the new look.

    One minor issue, on the side panel that shows the latest comments, the color is a bit too light on the background.

    I didn’t go looking for anything wrong, just noticed it when I looked to see what were the latest trending conversations. 🙂

    • Look better now?

      I think that dark gray would have worked fine on most screens with most color balances, but there will be some screens/color balance setups where it wouldn’t work.

  10. Looks great Daniel and I really like it!

  11. Daniel….i like the new look!!…nice and clean…great Job!!

    • Thanks! I can’t take all the credit, though!

  12. Typo – It a constant amidst change
    🙂

  13. Looks great on my iPad and Phone as well as desktop. Love it so classy and seamless. Very nice! 🙂

    • Thank you! I didn’t design the graphics – thankfully – but I did spend much of my design time on refining the mobile experience. That was mildly tricky, since I didn’t have any mobile devices to test it on. So I’m glad that it comes across seamless between your devices!

  14. The “i” in this font makes the whole line seem crooked. :/

    • Thanks for letting us know. Out of curiosity, What browser are you using?

      -Taylor

      • Firefox. You must have changed it though, cause it looks straight now.

      • Yes, I did!

      • I wondered if it was so; hmm, that’s strange that Firefox was interpreting the font that way.

        Yes, the font was changed, so hopefully everyone should have a pleasant reading experience now! 🙂

        -Taylor

  15. Good afternoon all! This is the “Resident Font Expert” speaking. 🙂

    So glad to see such a positive response for the design overhaul! And, thank you for your feedback on the font choice for the main text, particularly how the “i” is displaying.

    @Littlei – My first impression was that Firefox and Safari are just interpreting the font that way, as I do not observe it on Google Chrome. But in checking the site on Firefox and Safari, I don’t see what you have described. I have noticed, though, that odd effect with other fonts, and regrettably, I don’t know how to resolve the issue…other than switching the font.

    @Daniel’s Siblings – It’s probably the way your browser or computer displays the font. I have noticed differences between the way our family’s different computers – with the same browsers installed! – show fonts; my laptop gives a “crispy/cracked” look to some fonts as well.

    I really don’t have any specific answers, other than it is difficult to design a website that will display uniformly on everyone’s computer, so I guess I’ll have to resign my title of “Resident Font Expert”. 😀 I will be searching for a different font that will match the site and improve readability. Thanks y’all again for the feedback!

    -Taylor

    • It does seem to look better in Chrome. Maybe that is part of the problem!

      Thanks!

      • Oh, good, and you’re welcome! 🙂 For optimum results and best website display, I prefer Google Chrome…and tend to forget there are other browsers that need to be checked for compatibility! 😮

        -Taylor

  16. OK, y’all, I changed the main font. How are things now?

    • I had to hard-refresh my browser in order to see it, but it seems easier to read.

      -Taylor for TGF

      • I agree. I’m not surprised that browsers cache fonts; that makes sense.

      • Looks perfect now. I could have lived with the other, but my OCD side was going crazy looking at it.

      • OK. 🙂

  17. Looks good to me, man 🙂 I like the revamp.

  18. Love this new look Daniel. It looks great on my android phone, too.

    • Great to hear from you; I didn’t have any Android devices to test on, and this is the first I’ve heard from a Droid user. So I’m glad to hear it looks good there, too!

  19. Now the lower case i doesn’t dip below the rest of the line. That’s a good change appearance wise. But you lose the distinction of being the humblest gospel blogger. Using a lower case i rather than a capital one is a sign you don’t take yourself too seriously but putting the lower case i even lower made you the humblest of all.

    • That made me laugh loud enough that I’m afraid I woke up my apartment neighbors!

      (Actually, I didn’t. One smokes till midnight and the other’s having a loud party. So laughing at 10 is OK, I guess!)

  20. I like the new look personally.

  21. It looks great on my android phone. I guess if I have a complaint, it is that I don’t have anything to complain about. 😉

    • OK. 🙂

      • Well, it still doesn’t maintain my name and email and hasn’t for years. 🙂

      • That’s for your own security, so that someone else who accesses the site from a computer from which you have previously posted cannot as easily impersonate you. 🙂 😛

      • Well, that is what Windows Key + L is for when I walk away from the computer and my password on my computer to sign in are for. :p

  22. Aww, I liked the previous font. Oh well…

  23. Believe you bold faced the type. Looks better. Didn’t think you could improve the site but as I said the bold type looks better and is easier to read for old folks.

    • Thank you! I try to keep in mind that most of my readers are older than I am, so this was done with that in mind.

  24. The Garms Family did a great job. As really they are talented not just in the SG community but in the tech industry. Way to go Taylor! Congrats!

    • Thanks, Shelby! It was fun to help create the new look for SGB! 🙂

      -Taylor

  25. The only issue I’ve had is when I first launch the browser and visit your site, the mouse freezes for about 20-30 seconds until it loads. Once one page loads, I can navigate the site without pauses.

    I have this same issue with a number of sites (particularly any that use DISQUS for comments), but it wasn’t happening on yours until you launched this redesign.

    • That happened to me once here, too, but only once. Really, only two things changed: (1) There are more graphics, but only by about a 300kb difference (1.4 MB vs 1.7 MB), and (2) I’m loading one font, the one for the headers, instead of just using built-in system fonts. So one of the two is probably causing it.

      (I don’t use DISQUS. I just use the built-in WordPress comments.)

      • I don’t think it’s the graphics, because I can generally use my computer as graphics load on most websites.

        It must be the font. It did it again just now.

      • Thank you very much for the feedback. I’ll be in touch with the Resident Font Expert about this and give some serious thought to switching away from a custom font back to the usual one.