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BlenderNation Launches Redesign

430

After many months of preparation I'm proud to present you the new BlenderNation design! The old theme was over 6 years old and badly needed updating. We've worked closely with a renowned design studio to create a new, refreshing look that reflects the colorful composition of the Blender community.

The new theme is also better optimized for Search Engine Optimization (SEO), and is accessible for people with a disability. Overall, I believe we've made a major step forwards and we're good for the next 6 years!

*removes from to-do list!*

About Author

Bart Veldhuizen

I have a LONG history with Blender - I wrote some of the earliest Blender tutorials, worked for Not a Number and helped run the crowdfunding campaign that open sourced Blender (the first one on the internet!). I founded BlenderNation in 2006 and have been editing it every single day since then ;-) I also run the Blender Artists forum and I'm Head of Community at Sketchfab.

430 Comments

  1. @bernbern

    I seriously hope so because this design is really terrible. My eyes get tired after five minutes of trying to read white font on pink background.

  2. Raceimaztion on

    You have to admit, it's a rather unusual design, refreshing to a certain extent, but ultimately not quite as good-looking or useful as the original skin.

  3. Raceimaztion on

    You have to admit, it's a rather unusual design, refreshing to a certain extent, but ultimately not quite as good-looking or useful as the original skin.

  4. I wish that this is an april joke or something, because this is the baddest design ive ever seen! BRING BACK THE OLD DESIGN, PLEASE!

  5. gosh...it's soo pretty. It blends with the current design theme with blender perfectly. Thanks blendernation.com for making this awwwweeeeeesssssssoooooooommmmmmmmmeeeeeeee theme.

  6. gosh...this is really pretty. i love it since it really reflects the new upcoming blender 2.57 design theme. many thanks blendernation!!! - it's an aaaaawwwweeeesome design.

  7. Almost got me there, Bart. I was like 'what the?!'. Happy April Fools Day, pal. ;) (searching for the 'Post Comment' button which must be hidden somewhere else by some high contrast color... oh there, found it!)

    -Reyn

  8. Almost got me there, Bart. I was like 'what the?!'. Happy April Fools Day, pal. ;) (searching for the 'Post Comment' button which must be hidden somewhere else by some high contrast color... oh there, found it!)

    -Reyn

  9. Dammit bernbern, you've ruined it!! April fools is only funny when you read comments of idiots who believe stories like this! Oh well, till next year.

  10. I will post this again, because there it is important! BRING BACK THE OLD DESIGN! the new design is the baddest design Ive ever seen, I hope that this IS a 1 April joke!

  11. White letters against the bright background are hard to read... (also i am not a big fan of pastel colours :)
    Blend with you.

  12. I only hope this is a joke.
    You never know with young artists.
    They usually forget the second lesson, being : "Now you know how to work with the colours, learn to keep your hands off it".

  13. I only hope this is a joke. Bart has a smile on his face.
    But you never know with young artists.
    They usually forget the second lesson, being : "Now you know how to work with the colours, learn to keep your hands off it".

  14. Wow. I went here and I was like, "Whoa..." I like it! I like the colorfulness, the new feature allowing you to reply to people's comments, and I'm definitely digging the making the site more accessible for people with a disability thing. Cool. This was a pleasant surprise!

  15. Wow. I went here and I was like, "Whoa..." I like it! I like the colorfulness, the new feature allowing you to reply to people's comments, and I'm definitely digging the making the site more accessible for people with a disability thing. Cool. This was a pleasant surprise! What a defining moment for the Blender community!

  16. The white-on-pink comments are unreadable even to people without disabilities. The white-on-light-grey "Post comment" button is all but invisible.

  17. Hi!
    I don't want to disturb you, but this new theme is very difficult to read on my screen, white comments on pink background are a disaster, and the fonts don't seem to antialias.
    I'm very sorry, I love your site, but everything was ok with the previous one, this one seems to be less professional with all this differents color around.

  18. Hi!
    I don't want to disturb you, but this new theme is very difficult to read on my screen, white comments on pink background are a disaster, and the fonts don't seem to antialias.
    I'm very sorry, I love your site, but everything was ok with the previous one, this one seems to be less professional with all this differents color around.

  19. Nice to have a new design, but these colors are... umm... awfullll! I can't read anything because of the screaming colors! I liked that old good orange color.

  20. Please change the color theme more uniform of its own! And still I can't read most of the text because of too low contrast between text and background.

  21. Please change the color theme more uniform of its own! And still I can't read most of the text because of too low contrast between text and background.

  22. Congrats, this site looks very future proof.
    Thanks for your hard work.

    *removes from to-do list!*
    Hmm, not really, start on your next design today :

  23. JustinBarrett on

    wow, I HOPE this is an April fools joke....please bring the old site back, this one seems much less accessible...I like the "news at a glance" with the small images from the old layout.......ahhhhhhhh this one is just horrible.

  24. damn! How come I see 3 april fools jokes in a row and still fall for every one of them?

    PS. I will sue for eye damage by the white-on-pink.

  25. I have given up trying to reply to someone about a hardware issue surrounding 3dconnexion mouse.

    Functionality in firefox leaves something to be desired.

    I prefered the forum the way it was. It was easier to read and follow.

  26. Bart do you know the term Augenkrebs? It`s german and says something like eye-cancer. But nice one as every year.

  27. Wow, had me fooled Bart until I saw the first comment.
    I was about to give you an ear full, something about a room full of (politically incorrect term here) designing a site about Blender with no knowledge of what Blender is.
    Got to be the worst design ever (unless it was a breast cancer awareness site).

  28. Wow, had me fooled Bart until I saw the first comment.
    I was about to give you an ear full, something about a room full of (politically incorrect term here) designing a site about Blender with no knowledge of what Blender is.
    Got to be the worst design ever (unless it was a breast cancer awareness site).

  29. Hjörleifur Sveinbjörnsson on

    yes, this is a big improvement and much easier to navigate and the color combination is superb

  30. Hjörleifur Sveinbjörnsson on

    yes, this is a big improvement and much easier to navigate and the color combination is superb

  31. fonts are hard to read. fonts should be black or something. i think color and design on the comment portion need a serious redesign.

  32. fonts are hard to read. fonts should be black or something. i think color and design on the comment portion need a serious redesign.

  33. fonts are hard to read. fonts should be black or something. i think color and design on the comment portion need a serious redesign. where is login option

  34. fonts are hard to read. fonts should be black or something. i think color and design on the comment portion need a serious redesign. where is login option

  35. yes know this very well might be (and probably is) a April fools joke but that doesn't stop me from critiquing the theme. White on the comments area pink is almost unreadable.

  36. fonts are hard to read. fonts should be black or something. i think color and design on the comment portion need a serious redesign. where is login option?
    anyway i like it. go blender goooo....

  37. If this is not an April fools day prank I will be annoyed.

    I don't see the funny side in making a site unreadable.

  38. Design is cool. but what ever happened to the images and videos in the previews of the home page. I only looked at stuff that interesting from the home page.

  39. I think this site design is the closest I'll get to experiencing an actual acid trip. It's like falling down a manhole into a world of pastel skittles. Do I go or do I stay?

  40. Wow! The colors are SO vibrant and upbeat, the large fonts make it so easy for me to read, the content is so easy to find and simple, the look is so uncluttered, and, since all the space is taken up with colors, you don't need to be concerned with having any meaningful content to actually read. Brilliant!

  41. This is a good one. I was taken in. I was wondering, which "disability" is this accessible to, allergy to images?

  42. Skeptic. I'm not too sure about this white textbox and background (and especially fine print text) against varying intensities of bright pink - or white fine print against bright anything. And if I hadn't been here before, it would be difficult to tell the name/e-mail/website as a place to put text, and the post comment button as a place to click because it all blends together. UX designers would go mad!

  43. As a graphic designer I said "Glup !", and I see "1st April" on my computer !
    Seriously, that coulours pricks my eyes !

  44. THIS IS HORRIBLE!!! I HATE IT, IT LOOKS LIKE COTTON CANDY CAUSING ME TO GAG, I ALMOST CHOKED TO DEATH.
    THE DESIGN DOESN'T HAVE ANY VISUAL CUES ON THE FIRST PAGE (YOUR READERS ARE VISUAL PEOPLE, THAT'S HOW WE NAVIGATE THROUGH OUR LITTLE WORLDS. ) WHEN I BROWSE A PAGE HERE I'M USUALLY LOOKING FOR THINGS THAT ARE ALREADY HEAR, (I QUICKLY GLANCE FOR PHOTOS) YOU TOOK THAT AWAY AND REPLACED IT WITH HARD TO READ FONTS (VERY WEAK) AND IN SOME PLACES FONTS THAT ARE WAY TO LIGHT AGAINST A LIGHT BACKGROUND. THIS NEEDS TO GO BACK ON THE TODO LIST.
    I ALMOST NEVER POST COMMENTS IN THESE THINGS, I VERY MUCH APPRECIATE ALL THE ENERGY AND EFFORT MANY PEOPLE GO THROUGH, I THANK YOU ALL FOR YOUR EFFORTS AND KNOWLEDGE SHARING.
    DON'T KNOW WHERRE YOU MIGHT EVEN THINK THAT THIS WAS A GOOD IDEA!!!! OUCH

  45. White font color in comments area is hard to read (low contrast with background). Site design doesn't looks friendly (too many colors or bad colors) and menu is quite strange. But it's only my opinion. Blend with you!

  46. Oh my god, these colors hurt.....
    You got me for a few seconds until I read the first comment.
    Very original April fools day :)

    I like the "renowned design studio" and "refreshing" parts!!
    Especially when you can read "Powered by WordPress and the Nanoplex Theme" at the bottom of the page LOL :D

  47. Not going to lie to you. I am not a fan of the new design and I am all about color. Not trying to be a troll, but the old design was a little more intuitive, even if it was 6 years old.

  48. I hope this ISN'T an April fools joke, because the new design ROCKS. Finally people will start to take Blender SERIOUSLY. Thank you SO much!

  49. Good for the next six years once you modify this bit - white text on a light pink background is not great at the best of times. Apart from that - nice job.

  50. Ohh, my. You have been the victim of design goofs...

    The problem with designers are that they are exactly that, designers. They have no clue if it is practical or not. For example: White text on pink background, white on light grey, seriously, how smart is that?!?

    The choice of font (HelveticaNeue-Light) is a non-standard font in Windows, rendering like crap on a Windows system (I guess the design goofs only tested it on a Mac).

    The new design looks... new, but it doesn't utilise the space effectively. You could fit more news on a page before. Before it was easy to spot interesting news by looking at a picture or movie clip, now we have to "open" each news to see any pictures.

    Seriously, I would hold on to that invoice before they fixed the most obviously flaws.

    Please, at least, reconsider the choice of colour combinations

  51. I tried to post a comment but got "Server error", then when I try to repost it I get "Duplicate..." and still it doesn't show...

  52. oh! where are the home's thumbnails!!!
    And I think that the "pinky" look is too much teenager. It could be something like soft blue or green to better fit the reading view, seriously! I think the better color is in the posts. That orange is pretty well.

  53. oh! where are the home's thumbnails!!!!
    I think that the "pinky" style is too much teenager. It could be replaced with a soft blue, green or gray to better fit the reading view, seriously!! I think the better color is in the posts. That orange is pretty well.

  54. David Lindsley on

    Wow. The white comments against a PINK! background sure are hard to read. Can you please reconsider the coloring? Looks a little like a Fisher-Price toy :) Seriously, unless this is indeed an April Fools joke... uh, must be.

  55. You are surely joking, right? White text on pastel coloured backgrounds? That'll be easy to read on my laptop in my sunny conservatory then. And, anyway, what about people with genuine accessibility needs? April Fools joke, right? I hope so.

  56. hmmm.... looks nice although i would love to get back those small images on side that lets me actually look at stuff i really would love to instead of just clicking on links =D

  57. Honestly, that's really a good design :)
    Maybe you should reduce a little bit from 20 or 50px but it is nice!

    Reduce and keep it! pls

  58. I appreciate the effort and visit often... however, as a graphic designer I am compelled to point out that white text on light backgrounds makes at very hard to read, the contrast needs to be changed to increase ease of readability. If it is an April Fools day issue then I will await the corrected colors, either dark text or darker background, please....
    Again, thank you for the efforts, I enjoy the site.
    Paul

  59. the top part looks perfekt but ne pink commentbar is not realy readable i would change the colour to get more contrast for the text or change the text color to black! white one cream white pink doesnt work.
    greetingz
    ps dont get mad

  60. the top part looks perfekt but the pink commentbar is not realy readable i would change the colour to get more contrast for the text or change the text color to black! white one cream white pink doesnt work.
    greetingz
    ps dont get mad

  61. Sure it's a bit over-the-top, but some aspects actually do look more modern than the old site. The enormous header-links make for easy selection on a mobile browser and that ain' a bad thing.

    Overall it needs more drop shadows and maybe some lens flares though.

  62. Maybe it would be better if you have pictures done in a circle news, at this place:
    http:// thedymo.y0.pl/ BN.jpg -remove space. I'm not very well speak english.

  63. And if you take a picture, next to the message. FE this: thedymo.y0.pl/BN.jpg - i'm not very well speak english, sorry ;)

  64. Meh. Honestly, I prefer function over style, but I'm not too thrilled with the design here, either. The blue swoosh header takes up a LOT of real estate, and the longer drop-downs trail off the page, so I gotta scroll down to use it.
    Unless this is an April Fools' Day gag.

  65. other then the colors and some of the layout elements, it is kind of nice. I do like the side-by-side comments.

  66. Unregistered on

    Ooooh! Wow! The colours! It's hurting my eyes!

    You should not have let the designers aimed for a launch on the 1st of April. They might then have come up with something a bit less of a fruit salad! :-)

    Please give me the name of the "renowned design studio": we need it over here for our so-called "rainbow nation" of South Africa! :-)

  67. I really hope this is a joke, cause it's kinda ugly, lack the pics for quick browsing, and doesn't seem to allow replies half the time

  68. I really hope this is a joke, cause it's kinda ugly, lack the pics for quick browsing, and doesn't seem to allow replies with google chrome

  69. I'm very appreciative of all the work that goes into keeping this site up'n running. It's always my first stop when I boot up my PC at the end of the day and will continue to be. How ever, I liked hav'n a screen shot or pic of the topic with the post. The new look seems kind'a blah. It's not all about me though. I'm sure in many places around the world the smaller bandwith will be appreciated. And again, thanx for all the hard work !!

  70. "The new theme is also better optimized for Search Engine... and is accessible for people with a disability."

    Hi BlenderNation,

    I'm all for new, but have to say, as someone who has dyslexia, that the new look (colour scheme and fonts, especially the white text on pink background) are very very difficult to read, is it meant as a fun design for 1st of April?

    Kind regards,

    David

  71. let's live it as it is. maybe this layout is not most beautiful thing i've ever seen, but it's damn eye catching :D

  72. I can't find the "login" section... Very strange.
    Sorry, Bart... I thought it was an "april fool joke" about the redesign... I think that older version was more handy... And colours... Two rose tones looks too bad for reading long texts..
    I'm still not sure about... Are you joking? )) I'm not a troll everybody saw my comments here and I didn't trolled.
    Expanding menus are dissapear if I move mouse a bit from it.. and it takes more then one screen. It's not comfortable.

  73. I can't find the "login" section... Very strange.
    Sorry, Bart... I thought it was an "april fool joke" about the redesign... I think that older version was more handy... And colours... Two rose tones looks too bad for reading long texts..
    I'm still not sure about... Are you joking? )) I'm not a troll everybody saw my comments here and I didn't trolled.
    Expanding menus are dissapear if I move mouse a bit from it.. and it takes more then one screen. It's not comfortable.

    /Moolah

  74. Haha! Other than the colors, it's not too bad though. You need to relearn the art of writing horrible HTML code. lol

  75. Will anyone hate me for saying that I like it? Just needs the image rotator put back up, and the comment posting section cleaned up a little... And then it'd really rock!

  76. I really hope this is an April Fool's day joke... I can't see pictures, video, or anything elese, the colors are over-the-top, and it looks like whoever designed this put all their effort into making it look passably pretty and totally ignored the need to present information. I want to see the news, and as this is a website devoted to a visual product the lack of visual details is a jaw-droppingly poor design decision.

  77. Will anyone hate me if I say I actually like it?

    It just needs the image rotator added back in, and make the 'post comment' section look a little prettier. Then, it'd rock :D

  78. Cool and fresh design.... maybe some colors aren't easy to read, for example white text on light pink.... good change, Just no the right colors

  79. This April fools joke is not a joke. Absolutely looks better than all the template sites that look exactly the same w/the same format. Hate the banner/box 'design' thingy on top/bottom, Love the typeface, love the colors especially the orange, I would maybe make it a bit less feminine, needs just a bit of tweaking to fix the hierarchy so you're certain where you want your audience to look/go first. Last thing, it definitely needs pictures, or 'A' picture/image, either on top or for the background. #win

  80. Niiiiiiicccccccceeeeee! Blender defiantly need's a forum like cgchannel,cgsociety, this a cooooollllll start.

  81. hahahahahahha!!!!!!!!

    white text on light colored backgrounds & no images on the main page that must be an april fools joke!!!!!

    ...actually i like this site too much for this joke to be funny, please make readable asap.

  82. jaim gemayel on

    The new web facade looks kool, but comments zone need another text or background color, isn't good contrast...

  83. Are you trying to give me a seizure? :S

    PS. If you're wondering, it's a joke. I don't have epilepsy or anything like that. DS.

  84. The new color scheme is much easier to read from and doesn't strain my eyes like the old theme. The little bit of contrast really helped!

    ...Only two comments?
    Happy April Fools Day :D

  85. The new theme somehow ate lots of outrageous comments - it seemed like you didn't like it so much after all. Oh well, on to next year's April 1st then! :-D

  86. I admit: I fell for it. I even believed the 'renowned design studio' bit. But then a comment brought me back to reality :)

  87. Loved it at first ... then hated it ... then kinda liked it again. In the end hated it though :p !

    top marks for April fools efforts to Bart ;)

  88. It had to be april-fools. I noticed the link to the original designer and the design was something like more than 5 years old.

    And it was horrible. It tired my eyes within five minutes because of the lack of contrast between text and background. White text on a coloured background hardly ever works.

  89. So good to see Blender Nation back in its usual boring and beautiful design!! That april 1th stuff was a real shocker!! (shiver)....

  90. I was almost cheated )) So good try that I thought.. "oh it can't be - so serious work... but a strange coincidence" ))
    Bart, that was great joke! )))

  91. AhAh ! Well done Bart ! I wrote 4 lines of comments before thinking that it was an april joke ! The header was cut and the title not visible unde IE7. I couldn't send my post... the links were not active and the theme was like a ugly Valentine card... It was scary !o)

  92. I did kinda liked fooling around with a strange new interface, but yeah, dealing with the horrible white text on bright color background and the strange layout after a while did bother me. I thought the site was still in development at first or something. But after I played around with it, and seeing Comments jump around and stuff, it was a pretty inconvenient design, and after I saw the Comments popping around on one page, it seemed like something was up. And then the site restored itself again. But before that, I even sent a post at first glance, saying I thought I liked it, trying to make myself like it. Maybe it was my sleep deprivation or something. I should've know it was an April Fool's joke! LOL I feel like such an idiot! X-D Good one, guys! (I hope you DON'T change anytime soon!)

  93. Right on!

    That image reminds me of the handbills they pass out on The Strip in Las Veg as.

    "Mistress Suzanne has visual treats for you......."

  94. oh haha you devil!
    I thought it for real. I do not like it design. but colors cool!!
    I should knew
    I thought maybe owner insane. lol
    cheer
    btw I 'm glad it back.

  95. ... by the way, it was the funniest april joke I saw on the web this year, althought it's not very kind for the people who put a lot of work into it...

  96. ups- you really fooled me.
    Yes, it wouldn't be the first time that a website "improved" itself from an unspectacular, well working design to something "modern, cool" that doesn't fit the needs of its audience.
    It is clearly visible that the theme has seen a considerable amount of work - so i believed it.

    For a rehabilitation of the themes author(s) i think it's not -that- bad - but its not the right one for Blender Nation. There -may- be websites where it works (esp. less Text-oriented sites)

    Notice:
    Good design is when you don't have to mind about it.
    BlenderNation forever!

  97. Chrome Monkey on

    Don't know why, but some of the tutorial pages are broken again.

    There is one exception. The "Community News" webpage at [www.blendernation.com/stream/], has a slightly different version of the top row selection bar. The "LINKS" selection on this one particular page resolves to the properly functioning webpage titled "BlenderNation - Links ... Unlocking Blender resources", at[www.blendernation.com/LINKS/].

    All the other blendernation webpages have a top row selection menu bar where the "LINKS" selection points to [www.blendernation.com/TUTORIALS/], and this page is half-broken. The beginner tutorials such as "pawn in a hurry" and the 'NURBS dolphin' tutorial are listed here, and they all direct to empty pages. And while there is a hypertext link in the page description that points to a working webpage at[www.blendernation.com/CATEGORY/TUTORIALS/], that particular page is like a partial copy of the "Unlocking Blender resources" page with all the sorting and grouping widgets taken out and missing.

    I went into too much detail here, but I wanted to be sure what I noticed was fully documented and I don't know how much of it was already known about and how much was unknown.

  98. Heu, for my part, I really liked the design, ok it was a bit too large but with proper proportions it is really appealing, refreshing and original for "3D" portal!

    I am really astonished by the comments above... You can't say that the current white page is beautiful, better or what we could say: "designed"!

    Bart, i'm pretty sure you liked it too, don't be shy :)

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