design

ON CREATIVE COLLABORATION

It has been my privilege to collaborate with accomplished people who are deeply into their work.

I’ve been designer and programmer on major web projects that lasted for years: co-creator of artseensoho.com in the nineties, then webmaster for a small, elite clientele that included photographers Patrick Demarchelier and Robert Whitman as well as National Geographic adventurer, filmaker and writer Jon Bowermaster and Vogue fashion editor Tonne Goodman. Together we accomplished a lot, and broke new ground along the way.

 

WEB DESIGN, CONSULTING AND CONTRACTING

For commercial projects, things go awry unless someone communicates well with both management and tech. That was my role starting in 2014 for firstVIEW.com. As a consultant, I first took a detailed look at the problems left behind by previous developers and mapped out a step-by-step re-development strategy with management. Then I accomplished as much of the repair as I could myself, before guiding the work of a server-side programming expert with whom I have a good working rapport. The project has been a major success so far: a dysfunctional relationship between the front-end and the database has been solved, the look-and-feel has been refined, and the user experience has been greatly enhanced. Further improvements lie ahead.

I also consult with style site MintModa.com, on everything from overall strategy to the smallest design details.

ART DIRECTION, DESIGN and PROGRAMMING  (1993 – ongoing)

tiger-time I wore multiple hats for this early National Geographic project: web designer, graphic designer and programmer. In the early days of the web, dial-up bandwidth was narrow and restrictive, meaning that pictures and graphics had to be tiny little GIFS, minuscule by today’s standards. Getting things to look good was like an arcane science. Entire websites were designed to accommodate a postage-stamp computer screen resolution of 640 x 480 pixels. It was a lot of fun.
 

artseensohoThis home page (circa 1999) comes alive with multiple rollovers when the visitor’s cursor moves across the surface. It is structurally a very detailed graphic interface that was built on sound fundamentals – it works today just as it did years ago. As a designer-builder, I’m irked that much of my detailed, handmade work has been bumped offline by the march toward automation and do-it-yourself template solutions. Fortunately, my depth of experience is proving useful now that so much web design is through browser-based tools that don’t come to life unless they can be effectively tweaked.

AWARDS: USA Today Hot Site; Wired Magazine Spotlight; Rockport Press, Best of the Web – Navigation; Communication Arts Web Site of the Week.

 
 

dnet6

GRAPHIC NAVIGATION

One of my strengths is the conception and design of intuitive graphic interfaces that invite the visitor to explore. The goal is to visually engage the visitor at each level – from the main home page all the way down to pages buried four clicks into the mix. To do so means that every detail of design and navigation must be consciously attended to – it’s important to sweat the little stuff.

jb-original960

 
WEB GRAPHICS: BANNERS AND BUTTONS

This project of banner creation for Jon Bowermaster’s blog site involved grabbing images from video clips that I found to be strong enough to make a lasting impression while conveying the spirit of his Oceans 8 project. For me, giving a light-filled, natural appearance to the whole project was essential.

jb-notes-trio960crop

jb-dispatch-o8logo-960

jb-banner-trio960

 

UNIFIED DESIGN

A clean, consistent look and feel across the board – for navigation elements, fonts, spacing and incidental buttons – establishes an atmospheric quality that works as a kind of environment through which the visitor moves.

jb-antarctica-nav-vid960

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FORM and FUNCTION

Photo editing, cropping and web optimization – the design and programming framework – the javascript drop down menu – every detail and every function… below is one of many slideshows I have created by following my own methods. Unlike the little breakdowns in a boilerplate template, there’s nothing random about this. It’s not entirely mechanical, either. Knowing how to build this myself really helps me get the most out of today’s off-the-shelf image galleries and templates.

bowermaster-slideshow960

 

INTERACTIVE DESIGN (2013)
This project involved the design refinement of an interactive flash media player.

engadin-mediaplayer

 

LARGE SCALE THEATRICAL PROJECTIONS (1993-95)
A shout-out to wonderful Wendall K Harrington, Sage Carter and Elaine McCarthy!