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2011 Portfolio Wrap-Up

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Ampersandrew.com Launches

While all the programming and development was done by me, all design and content of this site has been created Andrew Smith.

The best clients are also the toughest.

I’ve partnered with the talented Mr. Smith as a developer on a variety of projects in the past, many of which can be seen right here in my portfolio. The Flash version of his portfolio had been in development for months with another dev but bugs were preventing it from being completed without delay. Andrew reached out to me to create an HTML version that would retain the same look and feel and could keep the smooth transitions and animation of the Flash version.

This was a great opportunity to practice what I’ve preached for years about the benefits of HTML+CSS over Flash, as well as stretch my legs with the animation side of jQuery. As an added bonus, delivering a site that would work, as is, in an iPhone or iPad was fantastic for him, especially when we started this site at the height of the great Apple vs Google & Adobe conflict.

The portfolio includes:

  • Design & Content by Andrew Smith
  • Single Page Layout
  • HTML5 and CSS3
  • Progressive enhancement with Webkit CSS3 transitions
  • jQuery Galleries and Lightboxes, based on a heavily modified Colorbox
  • Custom HTML5 Video Player
  • Completely customized WordPress theme, dropping almost everything from the traditional front-end yet leveraging it as full featured CMS
  • Site of the Day – The CSS Awards

View Live Site

El Cuarto Año High School Site Launches

This was the final project of a few students, with the initial idea being to take what was once just a printed literary magazine and put it online, but it grew into something that could be a larger web presence for the high school as a whole. Prior to this site El Cuarto Año had only a small paragraph under the Association House of Chicago website.

A few students were responsible for gathering and editing all of the content, while my faculty contact and all around great guy Mr. Zapata kept them on track. I set up the system and design, gave advice on hosting and domain selection, and will train them this fall so that they’ll be able to upload their own content without assistance.

Website includes:

  • All Design and Development
  • Customized WordPress Theme based on Modularity
  • Image Galleries and Music Players

View Live Site

FugScreens Studios Launches

Zissou at FugScreens approached me to help with the launch of a new site for his studio, one that was separate from his own personal portfolio website. He had a few ideas about the look but wanted to stress simplicity. This is the design I came up using their logo for inspiration and incorporating his hand drawn graphic ink splatters.

The entire site was built on WordPress allowing him and interns the ability to update everything without much knowledge of code. The most important aspect was selecting a solid gallery plugin that would allow for an unlimited number of galleries, and an unlimited number of images in each. They can be used to showcase student artwork, or his own pieces for sale.

Screenprinting studio site includes:

  • Design and Development
  • Custom WordPress Theme
  • PayPal Integration for Simple Shopping Cart

View Live Site

Simple, Gray, pretty much Awesome

That was the extent of Megan’s website requirements laid out in her design brief* when we started the project.

Using her own custom business card as inspiration we came up with a clean and open layout that wouldn’t distract from her artwork, as well as featuring her custom designs for sale on Etsy. All data for the galleries is maintained in XML allowing her to update on her own quickly, and since the store imports its data directly from Etsy any changes made on that site will instantly be reflected here.

As the galleries were all displayed using Flash and SimpleViewer, I created a custom mobile site that would allow quick access to all her contact info, designs, artwork and store without the use of any plug-ins. Useful for when she’s out schmoozing and networking around town. Dynamic PHP and CSS means no second set of data has to be maintained just for this mobile site and version control issues are eliminated.

Portfolio site includes:

  • Custom Design
  • Etsy API Integration
  • SimpleViewer Customization
  • Mobile Versions for Android, iPhone and Blackberry

View Live Site

* By design brief I really just mean the conversation about her future website over sushi :)