I hope I’ve established that your website needs to make an emotional connection with your prospects and clients before it’s able to make an intellectual connection. We make emotional judgments unconsciously, so it’s vital that your website design conveys the emotions you want visitors to connect with.
Write down a handful of words that might evoke those emotions. Don’t worry if the words that pop into your head aren’t concrete words of emotion. Emotions are handled by a part of our brain which doesn’t have the ability to use words. They’re then handed off to another part of our brain which does have words, in what can only be described as a miracle. When the miracle happens and words like “sky” or “dragon” or “nostalgia” pop into your head, write them down. These convey far more meaning than if you were to write a list that said “curves, dark blue, shiny, professional” which, frankly, doesn’t tell me much as a developer or artist. The concrete nature of those words misleads us both into thinking we’re thinking the same thoughts. Abstracts do a much better job of conveying the emotions we want to build into your website.
It can be difficult to stop thinking logically about this and just feel how you want it to feel. Ask a close friend, especially someone artistic, to do some free association about your personality, about what they think of when they think of your work. Besides getting some good adjectives, you’ll learn how someone close to you perceives you right now. If that’s the image you’re hoping to convey, we’ll emphasize it. But if you discover you’re projecting an emotional image that’s not precisely what you want, now is the time to take control of it and give it new direction.