Beautiful Websites: Pictory’s Ode to Spring


There’s currently a debate raging in the publishing world over whether the web is robust enough of a platform to present magazine-like stories properly — paginated content heavy on photography, design and stylized type. The current popular opinion is that the web is not up to snuff, and thus the scramble towards dedicated readers and apps specially built for new devices like the iPad. Also, the reason for the print industry’s long-standing relationship with Flash, which handles such things in a manner that’s good enough for most.

But the web continues to mature as a presentation platform. Here’s another example of that growth: Pictory, the most recent endeavor from designer and editor Laura Brunow Miner. The site showcases captioned photography in a very magazine-like manner.

Check out the latest “issue,” a showcase on the arrival of Spring. It’s gorgeous, and it’s all done in semantic HTML, JavaScript and CSS. The fonts are provided by Typekit. The page-to-page navigation is controlled by the left and right arrow keys, but your scroll wheel works, too. There are even hidden gems, like the scripted event that makes the flowers on the title page bloom when the mouse moves over them.

When you’re done browsing Pictory, read Laura’s essay on her personal blog about how the web’s flexibility shaped her view of what’s possible in a digital magazine.

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