Design and Development Projects Roundup
As I was saying to a new client I met with yesterday, a web designer's site is a bit like a builder's home - never quite finished. A stereotype I know, but it appears to be fairly accurate!
In my case, the most recent project in my portfolio is about 6 months old and while I deliberate on a complete site re-design (it's in the works), I thought it easier to write bit of a round up as a blog post.
So, in no particular order, here are some of the stand out projects of the last few months:
The Birdhouse - Responsive Website Design for Whitby Business
First up, my in-laws' site. They opened their bed and breakfast in September 2014 and asked me to design a logo and website for them which would reflect their home, new business and personal style effectively.
Working from Hilary's initial concepts we created a logo and responsive website design which we were all happy with.
As well as using my custom-made content management system to manage the website, they're also making use of welcometowhitby.co.uk to manage their availability calendars and facilitate online booking via their website.
Countryside Jobs Training Database - Bespoke PHP/MySQL Application
I've worked with Kerryn and her team at Countryside Jobs Service a number of times over the past few years, but this was the first time I'd taken on a large development project for them since becoming self employed a few years ago.
The business sells advertising to employers providing jobs in the outdoor/countryside/wildlife sectors. They also provide information about relevant training courses, and this project was to develop a database-driven system to power the training section of their website and automate some of their back-office tasks.
The system is predominantly forms based, allowing staff to enter and edit data. They can also import CSV files and export relevant information for use in mailshots etc.
It's one of those things where there's a lot more going on 'behind the scenes' than appears on the surface!
It's written in PHP and MySQL and I used Bootstrap for the layout/styling for the backend, while the customer-facing section was designed by Kerryn, inline with her other sites. You can view that bit here.
Mulgrave Estate Holiday Cottages - Responsive Website Design for Holiday Cottage Agency
Back in the autumn Mulgrave Estate got in touch and asked me to design a z-fold leaflet for their holiday cottages, and then a website which would allow them to promote their accommodation more effectively (the cottage advertising was originally part of the general Estate website).
We worked closely to design a leaflet and website which we felt represented the business well and contained all the relevant information potential guests would need.
The site went 'live' in December and has been well received. It's a 'responsive' design - so it adapts its layout to the users' device, ensuring everyone gets a good experience using the site, regardless of screen size. It is also built using my tailor-made CMS, so it's really easy for the Estate staff to keep up to date.
You can view the site here.
Max Callum - Bespoke Web Application
Max and I were introduced through another of my clients, Ryan at Just Jelly. He runs a TV chaperone and tutor agency, providing a link between his directory of experienced chaperones and the TV production companies who hire them.
Having originally used a Wordpress site, Max was keen to update and improve his service so I designed a bespoke solution to meet his needs.
His clients can register, create their profile and pay their subscription online. Production companies can post jobs, recieve applications and accept or decline the applications all via their online account. When a job is posted, 'premium' members are alerted via text message to their mobile and by email, ensuring all positions are filled as quickly as possible.
As well as being able to manage his clients' profiles, Max can also update all the additional site content himself and add new pages as and when required. You can view the site here.
Musicport Programme - Cross-browser Web Application
Another interesting project I took on in the autumn was to develop a web-based programme app for the Musicport Festival. Jim and Sue wanted to get the programme information to as many attendees as possible, and also provide information on car parking, catering and more.
This project was put together in a week, so it was a little rough around the edges, but served as a fantastic proof of concept - we're looking forward to developing the system further for this year's festival.
During the week leading up to the festival and over the festival weekend the system was used by nearly 800 different people, over 1500 times in total. Not bad, for what was a bit of an 'after-thought'!
I'm currently working on a number of new website projects, as well as some logo/branding work and a physical product for an app development firm in London... details below!
I was contacted by Mubaloo a few months back with a request to build an LED control unit for a scale model of a housing development. Not an every-day project by any means, but something I was more than happy to take on; I spent a large proportion of my degree building electronics and have kept it up as a hobby ever since.
This video explains the concept - I'll post more details once I've finished the production versions of the system in the next week or so.
Chris at Whitby's famous Hadley's Restaurant asked me to design a new site for his family's business. We've agreed the design and I'm now getting on with the build of the site - it should be live by the end of the month.
Here's a sneak preview...