If there is one page-builder application that would allow you to design from scratch, and by scratch, I mean from a blank canvas, that would be Adobe Muse. This software was recently released by Adobe as part of the Creative Cloud series. It offers great opportunities to graphic designers and non-coding designers to finally get into web design.
I thought of doing an Adobe Muse review. I have tried Muse for a few days, and I say, from a non-coder’s viewpoint, it is a pretty amazing software. With a little understanding of graphic design and a great amount of experience with Adobe Photoshop, I managed to create a simple website.
Here are my observations:
As we all know, planning is an important aspect of web design. In this stage, you should create a hierarchy of the pages that you will be designing. Often, designers use tools to create a sound plan of webpages that will be present in the website.
But you don’t need other tools just to plan web pages in Muse. The software comes with a very intuitive planning section where you get to arrange the hierarchy of pages. You can add, delete, and arrange the pages by simply dragging and dropping them wherever you want.
One more feature to notice is that it comes with a Master page. Master pages house the elements such as headers, footers, logos and navigation areas. They work on all pages that you will design. So, you don’t have to worry about consistency in placements of said elements.
The Blank Canvas
Once you have started Muse, you will notice that it starts with nothing. As I’ve said, you literally design from scratch. It means that Muse comes with no defined presets (although users have created their own templates to start from).
To me, this blank canvas offers great liberty to designers, especially if you want to experiment with your creativity. It can really set your ideas loose.
However, for people who lack graphic design experience, Muse may be a difficult beast to tame. Because you need to design everything, you will delve into creating headers, font stylings and more. Muse can only provide you a handful of elements that you can drop right into your blank canvas:
Over the years, fonts have become a major concern for web designers. We remember that we were limited to a few basic system fonts over the years until Web Fonts became really popular. Adobe Muse has no problems with fonts. You can browse into the gigantic font library that will surely be seen in browsers.
What’s great about Muse is that it allows you to create tablet and phone versions of your website. As a designer, this gives you a lot of freedom to create the overall feel of your mobile versions. However, this is really confusing because you have to re-create your layout. I hope this can be improved.
So, what’s my take?
Reviewing Adobe Muse can be pretty frustrating at first, but once you get used to the elements, you will have fun using it.
When it comes to ease of use, Muse (rhyme not intended) is great, especially for those who have tons of graphic design experience. However, if you don’t know a darn thing about designing, it might give you trouble. Adobe created Muse to suit designers.
This is what separates this software from DIY website builders, which would just give you options, like which buttons to drag and drop or what color will they be. Its steep learning curve just mirrors how Adobe targets the professionals in their products.
Design-wise, I would declare that its richness and quality is probably unrivaled. Options are flooding through every bit of the software. Other page builders just don’t have the same quality of features Muse have. However, the software is relatively new, there are still some loopholes to address:
- Social media integration
- Search Box customization
- Video integration
As of now, Muse has still a lot of room to improve. But I think it would be a short wait before this application becomes the leading web design tool.
Like Adobe Muse?
Do you like Adobe Muse? Well, you can download it here.
Adobe Muse is a graphic designer’s web-design-dream come true. But if you are not familiar with Adobe products, it might give you trouble. But in my case, I really had a great time using this software. It opened opportunities for me to extend my design capabilities. Despite the arguments that Muse will destroy the web design industry, which I totally disagree with by the way, I still find it helpful for everyone.
By the way, as I was trying out Muse, I was able to create this simple webpage. See for yourself!