20 Coolest Web Designs From the Far East
The far east is perhaps, more widely known for its diverse culture and strong traditions that dates back to several thousands of years. They are also known for their exotic artwork and some of the most prolific paintings we have ever witnessed. Such a diversification has helped in their evolution to become more competitive and challenge the trends of art and design.
Apart from the obvious differences in language and text, there are many other aspects of web designs from the Far East that set them apart from their Western counterparts. The Web in the far east is young, and designers are catching up to the trend very quickly. Despite the challenges, more opportunities are seen equipped with smart people, a potential market, increasing demand, flexibility and innovative and user-centered design thinking.
While it is hard to generalise such a broad range of designs, certain elements are prominent: extensive use of images and animation; minimalism and complexity; fusion of ancient and modern styles; and widespread use of music.
Many modern Asian artists seek to blend ancient Asian themes with contemporary artistic styles. This post brings together 20 examples of cool websites from China, Japan and Korea, covering a range of styles from corporate sites and professional bodies to social networks and personal portfolios.
Based in Hong Kong, Sixstation Workshop offer graphic, illustration, web design and branding. Their website combines Chinese characters, ink and water animation and atmospheric music to convey a strong sense of the agency’s choice of aesthetics.
The creatives of Dongpai studio present a stunning interactive website to communicate their philosophy and approach to design. The lush ink calligraphy drawings and animations fuse ancient and modern, with visual’s inspired by ‘The Romance of the Three Kingdoms’, an epic Chinese text from the 14th Century.
Shoebox’s website employs extensive Flash animation and hand-drawn visuals on brown paper background to create a sense of homemade intimacy and eminently cool styling.
Shanghai-based Neocha is a social networking platform aimed at bringing together and exposing China’s creative talent and subcultures. Users can upload and share music, promote events and follow the activities of their favourite artists.
5. Idea Design
Idea design presents a Flash-heavy website with clean, minimalist graphics and pleasant animations, reflecting the studio’s creative practice.
Artlans studio uses this website to showcase the best of their output in web, multi media, Flash, illustration and branding.
7. Mole Lele
Mole Lele’s personal web portfolio is truly charming. The artist’s alter ego walks through the rooms of an underground house as visitors navigate through the site.
The work of designer Saga Masahiko exists in the context of ukiiyo-e, traditional Japanese painting and printmaking. Masahiko takes the subject matter and style of this ancient form and translates this into beautiful digital images, as found on this portfolio website.
Karimoku are Japanese designers and makers of furniture, focussing on the qualities of wood, Japan’s long tradition of domestic design along with a modern sensibility. This stylish site showcases Karimoku’s New Standard range of chairs, tables and interior items.
The website of Japan Association Press uses really strong design work combining photography, typography, animated buttons and navigation.
11. Tibori Design
Tibori Design presents an ongoing project of stunning three-dimensional artworks inspired by classic eight-bit computer games such as Mario, Space Invaders, Final Fantasy, Mega Man, Kirby and Pokemon.
12. Ishiyama Senkoh
Japanese kimono company Ishiyama Senkoh has a beautiful Flash-based website, with subtle typography and full-page photographs effectively showcasing their exquisite garments.
Mikihiko Kyobashi is a Japanese photographer specialising in dramatic underwater images of breaking waves. His website is a great portfolio for his work, with animated backgrounds of churning sea and suitably aquatic ambient music.
The website for the All Japan Kendo Federation nicely blends the traditional aesthetics and imagery of the martial art with animated graphics and easily navigable design.
This map from the website of Japanese broadcaster NHK is a cute example of websites that combine hand-drawn cartoon-style graphics with animated interactivity.
Moonlinx is an online magazine focussing on art, design, music, creativity and communication. The magazine’s sophisticated design makes maximum use of photography and typography, transparencies and animations to accompany the content
17. Masuda Tomomi
Artist Masuda Tomomi produces sublime images in the Japanese tradition of Super Flat painting. This website is a cool showcase of the work, a minimalist layout that lets the paintings speak for themselves.
Based in Seoul, Daum Communications is a leading player in Korean language websites. This recruitment-related page is typical of Korean design, with colourful, quirky graphics and friendly design.
DCM Entertainment offer website planning, management and development; multi media and motion graphics, presentations, promotions; mobile, Flash and all design content. The company website showcases the approach to design, with a highly detailed and interactive interface.
20. Apple News
The Apple News website is another example of eccentric yet cool Korean design, combining cartoon-style graphics, futurism, and interactivity, all in an eye-catching green and yellow colour scheme.
Further resources for inspiration:
So, what are your opinions about the webdesign industry in the far east. It certainly looks very promising and we can definitely see the raging interest in designers and developers to build more user centric websites and thus making the web, a global platform to contribute and collaborate and to create a rich user experience on the internet.
We hope you liked the article, and we will be featuring such awesome sites from different countries in our upcoming articles. So, stay tuned.