The first sense of an event: the event’s website. It can cause the first rumblings of hype (or dread). The web designer’s job is to master the event’s aura before the event even happens, capturing the scene in fonts, colors, and design. These websites show us, uniquely, how to mold an event’s esthetic into something digestible, useful, and that accurately reflects an event’s story. Each person has a story, product, and business has a story—and so does each event. An event website acts as the storyteller and, if the story seems consistent and cool, then people will want to experience the story for themselves and attend the event. Here are the best and most beautiful event websites that function as great storytellers (in no particular order):
No matter how awesome a website’s design looks, if navigating proves difficult and you can’t answer questions about the event in only a few clicks—something is missing. Summit Dublin’s website not only electrifies your eyeballs (you know, in a cool way), but it answers questions you didn’t even know you had: if there are hotels—or, um, a casual castle—available for your stay. Plus, seeing Bono’s face immediately upon entering the website has to be one of their main selling points.
The Air France Expo website is almost exactly what you’d expect from a French website, based on stereotypes of French style: minimalistic, chic, and sophisticated. In a way only the French can, they’ve made a website utterly sexy: the sleek fonts and color schemes, the elegant white space, and the gorgeous images that float gently onto your screen when scrolling. Even their copy has a sensual side: “We invite you into a world, suspended between the earth and the sky, to share passions and poetry from Shanghai to New York and Paris.” The Air France Expo’s website is just that—poetry.
#digitized14’s website shows users how to take advantage of the recent phenomenon of the one-page responsive design. From its simplistic colors to the playful marker-drawn font, the design throws the site users into the event, inviting them to interact with the hip interface and look at all the talented speakers for the event, wearing sweet button-downs and trendy black, thick-rimmed glasses. And it’s awesome.
Far different than the Air France Expo or #digitized14 website, the Brand New Conference website immediately shows its colors boldly—literally. If you want to feel like a technologic bad-ass, this web design will fill that void, using confident reds, blacks, and grays to bring chutzpah into the world of technology and brand identity. Bitmap-oriented, the “identity” for this year’s Chicago conference has to do with the early 1984 Mac OS and (graphic design font nerds, rejoice) the Chicago font for that operating system.
Brightly colored illustrations of wildlife? Sure, the conference takes place in South Carolina, but the immediate images aren’t quite what you’d expect for a tech event- making it unique and intriguing in its own rite. The wildlife theme continues further down the page, where each “track” (design, gaming, UX, etc.) gets its own wild animal. The overall melding of wildlife and technology proves to be endearing but sleek, melding fun kitsch with simplicity.
If the name of the event isn’t enough for you, then maybe the cover image will make you jump out of your seat, into the sunshine, and over to the nearest beer garden. This 2013 website works its magic on users, packaging the experience so perfectly, you can almost taste the craft brews from its muted and quirky color scheme and retro fonts.
The design is clean and simple, but the best part of Tribecon’s website lies in its fun, friendly vibe. The contact section: “Hit us up.” The last speaker listed: “You.” And the events are listed as “awesome.” Their excitement is contagious, creative, and, well—awesome. Why aren’t we best friends with them yet?
Keep Portland Weird, right? Drag your cursor and scroll down slowly past the cover image to witness something…trippy(just do it…trust us). And, in truly Portland fashion, the website becomes beautifully minimalistic as you continue to scroll.
Take the best design from your Pinterest board and Etsy wish-list to fuse the coolest, authentic, hand-lettered goodness that is the Circles website. Its vintage poster-y feel maintains a silky smoothness as you scroll down. The site is 100% fluid and cool—even the pictures of the speakers make you want to give them a high-five and grab a beer. The style highlights its trendy earthiness—beards, flannel, and all.
In a Zooey Deschanel, cutesy-yet-quirky kind of way, the Image Festival website (and all its gumball-colored freshness) has a big personality with text and bright colors, and it’s also super refreshing and forward-and different from everything else. This website showcases its fun nature in pops of color and funky fonts.