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CSS: Page Layouts introduces basic layout concepts, gives advice on how to create properly structured HTML based on prototypes and mockups, and goes into critical page layout skills such as floats and positioning. Author James Williamson shows how to combine these techniques to create fixed, fluid, and responsive layouts. Designers are also shown how to enhance their pages through the creative use of CSS techniques like multi-column text, opacity, and the background property. Exercise files are included with this course.
Congratulations! You have made it to our last lab. In this lab we are going to turn our attention to enhancing specific page elements in a way that allows us to try out some of the skills that we learned earlier in the chapter. So I have got both of the finished files that we are going to be working on opened in a browser, and the index page is one you've seen before. There's one slight addition to it that I want to point out. Let's scroll down a little bit. You can see here we have the Featured Gallery, so New York is being identified as the featured gallery of the week, month, or year, depending upon how frequent this site is updated.
I've also included another page this time and if I flip over to this tab, this is one of the gallery pages, and this is the Philadelphia gallery. You see we are doing some interesting type treatments here with the Philadelphia text. We've got of course our menu that is using the CSS sprites. And if I scroll down, I can see that I have some two-column text and I have images that are also in multiple columns. And by way of responsive design, you can see that those columns flex to a certain point, along with the images inside of them, and then it changes again to a smaller gallery that flexes, and then finally it changes to a single gallery that flexes a little as well.
So I am going to go into our starter pages, and we are going to talk about all the different steps that you are going to have for this particular lab. So I have the index.htm, the philadelphia.htm, and the main.CSS files open. The main.css file's found in the _css directory, inside the 08_08 folder, and the other two are found right inside the 08_08 folder. So at the very top of the main.css, I have our lab steps. Let's go through them one at a time and talk about all the different wonderful cool things that you get to do in this lab.
So our first step is dealing with CSS sprites. For this lab, by the way, we're going to stick to our desktop styles. This is responsive layout, but rather than making you do the same thing three different times or three different ways, we are just going to stick to the desktop styles. But feel free with any of these steps to go into the mobile styles or the tablet styles and really kind of see how the same task was performed there as well. So in desktop styles, around line 1069--and no, that is not a misprint-- you should find the four selectors that represent the individual elements in the menu. Remember our menu.
We had the contact page. We had the gear. We had the shopping page. We had the galleries page. Create a background property that uses the icon_sprites_25.png graphic in the images directory, to display the respective icons. Now remember the icon images are 100 pixels apart, so it's the same exact file that we were using earlier, from each other, and they are part vertically. Test out those graphics and then apply the appropriate offset to align the icons with the text. So if you think about plunging in the same values you did in last exercise, you're not quite going to work. You are going to need to go in and work with those offsets a little bit.
And as a way of kind of showing you where that is, I am going to go down to line 1069 in our code, and it does take a little bit of time to get down there. All right, there we go. So here are those four selectors I was talking about in our desktop styles: gallery, gear, interact, and shop. So just make sure the appropriate icon is displaying for those. So I am going to scroll back up. Your second step is in the desktop styles, find the banner paragraph selector. That's line 1102. And you are going to modify the paragraph so that the background color is at 80%, while the text itself remains opaque.
If I show you the finished version of that, you have seen this before, but this is what we are talking about. We want to make sure that this is semi-transparent, but the text remains opaque. And again that's about line 1102. The next step is in the desktop styles, find the New York preview gallery selector. That is on line 1163. You want to modify that background so that the featured.png in the images directory is layered on top of the existing background graphic and is positioned against the left edge and 50 pixels from the top edge.
Now that sounds like a lot, but if I go into the finished version of this--and you just want to make sure that it's aligned 50 pixels down and aligned to the left edge. And again you want to add that featured gallery PNG file to that particular element. Now going into the philadelphia.htm page, in terms of its desktop styles--now they are all in the same main.css, but this is going to be affecting items on the philadelphia.htm. In the desktop styles, which is on line 1176, find the intro and the photos selectors and modify them so that their content displays in two columns with a .5em gap between the column, so we are going to have to do some multiple columns here.
In the desktop styles, which is on line 1168, find the gallery h1 selector and add a text shadow that adds two shadows. The first should be the color (226,100,100) with a vertical offset of -.1ems and a blur of .02ems. The second should be rbg(102,151,188) with a vertical offset of .1em and a blur of .02ems. Both shadows should be at 60% opacity. Of all the instructions I have given you so far, that's the one where I can see a lot of people just going, what in the world is he talking about? But if I go over into the browser, into the Philadelphia page, you can see the text Philadelphia. And essentially the red version of it and the blue version of it that are below it, and it sort of gives the illusion that you have this text sort of coming together to make the purple version in the little.
But those are text shadows, and if you remember from earlier in the chapter, you're able to string text shadows together. You can apply multiple text shadows in one declaration. So what you want to do is you want to use the measurements that I have given you here in the steps as a guide, and you want to create text shadows that are going to create that special effect that we've got up there inside the Philadelphia page. That should keep you busy for a little while. Now I know that some of the things that I ask you do, especially like that text shadow right there, those are pretty specific instructions. So I want you to kind of be creative. Feel free to play around with some of those properties. Experiment with some of the different values to see what other styling effects you can come up with, based on what we have covered in this last chapter.
And as always, be sure to watch the solutions movie right after this one to compare our code and to discuss my approach to the solutions and see how it compares with yours.
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