All posts in Site announcements

New version of New Mexico Community Foundation site

We’re delighted to announce a new version of the site for the New Mexico Community Foundation.Watch movie online The Transporter Refueled (2015)

Four years ago we worked on an earlier redesign of the site and we’ve maintained and updated the site in the meantime.

But with a new CEO and changing priorities, it was time for a major overhaul. Working with Eric Griego of Firestik Studio, we helped the NMCF identify their key audiences and objectives, and translate that into a structure for the new site that would be easy to navigate and expandable.

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Social Media Case Study – Santa Fe International Folk Art Market

Having a solid website is a great start, but increasingly a good social media offering can really make the difference with your online presence.

I built the website for the Santa Fe International Folk Art Market several years ago, and have been maintaining it for them ever since, adding new artists as they’re selected for the Market, and keeping the press releases and press cuttings up to date.

But the organization became increasingly aware that they needed to do a better job of communicating what was happening with the Market throughout the year.

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AIA Santa Fe chooses Moore Consulting to design new architects’ site

We’ve just launched the new site for the local Santa Fe Chapter of the American Institute of Architects (AIA), and we’re very happy with it.

With over 130 Regular, Associate, Emeritus and Allied members, AIA Santa Fe focuses on local design and construction issues, supports New Mexico architecture students, provides continuing education opportunities for its members and circulates news and event information.  Its lecture and film series are open to the public to bring diverse groups together to discuss architectural issues.

Updating their previous site meant calling its developer, and the site content had grown a little disorganized over time. So two key aims for the new site were that it could be updated by AIA volunteers and that it was structured to allow for additions.

Given the site’s main audience is architects, it also had to look good.

We developed a clean and spare design that incorporated the AIA colors but also left lots of white space. The most recent items added to the site’s News section appear automatically on the front page of the site, and other sections include sublevel navigation that can grow as more pages are added.

A Member Directory and Search feature make it easy to find the contact details for the chapter members, while integration with Paypal allows members to pay for their monthly lunches via the site.

And because the site is built using the WordPress content management system, all the updates and additions across the site are now performed by AIA volunteers.

Site address: http://www.aiasantafe.org

New Website for Santa Fe Architect Steve Shaw

Shaw Architecture, P.A a long-established architecture firm here in Santa Fe chose Moore Consulting to design and develop their new website, which has just launched.Watch movie online The Transporter Refueled (2015)

Steve Shaw was looking for a clean and elegant design that showcased his high-end residential and commercial work, which includes the new ranch headquarters facility at the Flying Diamond Ranch, the Madden-Follingstad residence and the Santa Fe Business Incubator.

We chose a dark background to show the photography to best advantage and used an elegant display solution to allow visitors to click through multiple images for a project without having to reload the whole page.

The site is built using WordPress, making it easy to maintain. However, we developed a set of custom templates for the site, allowing for control over every detail, from the homepage slideshow to the unusual sub-level navigation which appears above the main navigation bar, allowing the full width of the page to be used for images and text.

Site address: http://www.shawsf.com

New site for Photographer Jeff Henig using WordPress and Photoshelter

I’m delighted to announce the launch of our latest website – it’s for Jeff Henig, an American travel photographer based in Japan, who specializes in shooting cultural and religious festivals across Asia. You can check it out at www.jeffhenig.com.

The challenge

When Jeff first contacted me, he had a blog in one location, a Flash-based portfolio online somewhere else, and a Photoshelter site for his stock archive. He was doing a good job keeping them all up to date, but each had a different look and feel, and navigating between them was confusing for visitors.

He was looking to integrate all three parts of his web presence under one design and navigation system to present a more polished and professional image, and make things easier for potential stock buyers or photo editors.  As he says,

“I wanted to create seamless navigation and a consistent look between my Photoshelter site, my Blog and also explore ideas on a better Portfolio page.  I was looking for a web designer who could fix what was wrong with my current site.  The navigation wasn’t right and it wasn’t interactive enough for me.  When I saw David’s personal web site a light bulb went off.  I knew he could help. “

His design brief was wisely to go big with his bold images, and also to include a more involving way of showing his Portfolio than just thumbnails.

He also wanted to be able to update his blog, portfolio and archive as easily as possible.

Another potential issue was that he was in Tokyo, and I was in Santa Fe, New Mexico, so we needed a good plan if we were going to work together.

The solution

about_grab_250The plan we came up with used several elements:

Each had to be brought together under a single design and consistent navigation, to present the best experience for the user.

We loosely based the design on a Photoshelter theme, but customized it drastically, creating a custom banner (that shows a different image each time a new page loads), changing the background colors and adding a shadow box around the main content area.

We also adjusted the typography size and colors to match his logo.

The WordPress side of the site offers 3 main page templates – a homepage that shows a large main image, some introductory text and the titles of the latest blog entries (updated automatically). The About section features a 2-column design, making it easy for Jeff to add more pages to this section if he needs to, as the sublevel navigation adjusts on the fly.

Jeff wanted the blog’s content area to be as wide as possible, as he would be posting lots of photographs. We designed it so he could include photos up to 870 pixels wide, placing a utility area at the bottom of the page to give access to monthly and category archives.

With a few tweaks to the CSS, the Photoshelter galleries fitted in seamlessly for the Gallery/Stock section. You can browse the collections and galleries, as well as search for particular topics while the layout and navigation is exactly the same as the rest of the site. Unless you were paying attention to the address bar, you’d never know you were actually on the Photoshelter site.

Incorporating Fluid Galleries

portfolio_grab_300Choosing Fluid Galleries for the Portfolio section gave Jeff the flash he was looking for in this section (pun intended), while also making it easy for him to update the galleries.

The system instals on your own server and gives you an admin panel to create and update galleries (and choose some navigation and design options). The galleries themselves are then output to Flash, creating a smooth scrolling look.

The problem is that out of the box, there was no easy to link the portfolio section with the rest of the site. We could pop it up in a new window, but we didn’t like that idea, so I took a look at the code Fluid Galleries produces, and worked out how we could embed a logo and navigation bar above the Flash area to integrate it better into the rest of the site.

Now when you’re done with the Portfolio you can easily get to any other section without having to close windows or go via the homepage. I’ve seen a lot of Fluid Galleries portfolios, but not one that works so cleanly with the rest of the photographer’s site.

Long Distance Relationship?

gallery_grab_250

Oh, and the working with someone in Tokyo bit? No problem. A few Skype calls pinned down the requirements and the plan (although talking to someone in the evening for me while it was lunchtime tomorrow for him took some getting used to).

For sending files and comments and questions back and forth we used the superb Basecamp system. I use it with my local clients too, as it keeps everything project-related in one place, but it’s even more valuable when someone’s across the world.

Result

Jeff’s new site brings all the elements together, makes it easy for him to blog, adjust his portfolio or update his Photoshelter archive. And it’s a custom design that creates the impression he wants across all his web content.

Jeff’s summary of things:

“I was very pleased with the redesign of my web site.  The end result was a fresh, clean and professional looking web site. David was very professional and a pleasure to work with.  I’d highly recommend him and would use him again for further design tweaks.”

Visit the site: www.jeffhenig.com

  • Drop me a line or give me a call (+1 505 577-8990) if you’d like a chat about what I could do for your photography website.

New site launched for Alan Ross Photography

I’ve just launched a new site for Santa Fe-based landscape photographer, master printer and teacher Alan Ross.

Alan was looking for a site to showcase his great work, his workshops and his tech-related blog. He explains, ” I had very little ability to make updates and changes to my old site, and besides needing a new look, I desperately needed a site that I could manage almost entirely by myself, with no working knowledge of code and HTML, and no special, expensive software.”

Enter WordPress and Photoshelter. We chose the Crisp Photoshelter theme as the basis for the design, but tweaked a number of elements to create the templates that would work across both the text (WordPress-driven) and image-heavy (Photoshelter-driven) parts of the site.

First up was adjusting the navigation to include all the sections that Alan wanted – Workshops, Shop and Blog, as well as the usual About and Contact info.Then we darkened the overall background (which meant changing the shadow around the main content area), added a grey background to the thumbnails and single image display, and created a dark border to set off the gorgeous black and white images. Subtle tweaks, but ones I think work well.

Alan’s Portfolio is set up as one Collection, so he can continue to add as many galleries to it as he needs to. The searchable Archive is another Collection.

The Blog is set up as a WordPress blog, with the other sections of the site created as WordPress pages. So Alan can easily update both the text and images, while the whole site looks like one clean, consistent whole.

And he’s happy with the result: “David Moore listened to and heard my website needs, was responsive to my questions, and was all-around a complete pleasure to work with.”

Alan’s site: www.alanrossphotography.com.

Memorial Day Update

A quick note on what’s been happening at MC Towers recently – I’ve been a little lax with the news, because there’s been so much of it.

Santa Fe Prep site launched

This was actually a while ago, but we’re still filling out the range of content, so it’s never clear exactly when the site’s due for an announcement. As well as the planning, design and construction of the new site for Santa Fe’s premier independent school, we designed and set up a new email newsletter system for them, to keep all the parents, students, alums and other interested parties informed. You can visit the site now, and I’ll post more detailed case study in a while, as it was a complex but rewarding project.

Breakthrough Santa Fe

In another project for Santa Fe Prep, we built a sister site for their great tuition-free program in which talented high school and college students teach middle school students with limited educational opportunities the academic, organizational and social skills they will need to succeed in competitive high schools.

Latest Articles

In my ongoing writing gig for Dublin-based web consultants iQ Content, I’ve recently looked at Irish political websites, and how your website reflects your corporate culture (whether you like it or not). Worth a quick look, and while you’re there, check out the always-illuminating group blog they run.

What’s in the pipeline?

It’s busy busy over here, as we do work for architects Ellis Browning and Richard Martinez, and law firm Simons and Slattery. The New Mexico Community Foundation are getting an update on a site they maintain, and right now I’m also doing some rush work for the International Folk Art Market. After that I’ll likely be working with a renowned photographer on his site, which I’m really looking forward to.

And in the fall, I’ll be heading back to the world of academe to teach a semester-long class on user-centered design approaches in the Media Arts department at NM Highlands University. More news (and possibly presentation material and the like) nearer the time.

Any time for sleeping?

Not much, but I did get to drop into the NM Adobe Users Group‘s inaugural Santa Fe meeting – cheers to Damien for organizing that. And I’ve been taking a lot of photos – one of which illustrates this post. You can see some of the better ones on my Flickr stream.