new website announcements

DriFlower.com New Website Launch

DriFlower.com New Website Launch

I am SO HAPPY to announce the launch of a new custom e-commerce website, https://DriFlower.com! The site went live on Saturday, August 1 after starting work on June 3. Many grateful thanks to DriFlower founder and CEO Jay Larkins for the opportunity! Kudos to Marketing Director Jon Griffin for a productive working partnership on the site design and content.

This little company’s equipment, poised to revolutionize the hemp and cannabis industry, maximizes the efficiency of crop harvest and drying. It’s disruptive technology at its finest – new harvesting tools with simple design and function, yet so effective. The idea is to reduce the time, effort and cost of harvest while ensuring minimal contact with the crop itself from harvest until it’s dry and ready to trim. This preserves the medicinal value of the produce while cutting costs for the producer, a win-win prospect for any business. Furthermore, the integrity of the company’s founder is matched only by the quality and durability of the harvesting equipment. Offerings include:

  • Complete kits that a home grower can use individually and that small to medium size operations can use in quantity to maximize the use of their dry space.
  • Components for growers who want to design their own system.
  • Custom installations for large growing operations (contact them for more info about this).

The site includes:

We designed these latter features to grow overtime. Moreover, the online shop will also feature new products as time goes on. I hope you will visit the website to see it for yourself. The overall design is very understated and handsome, with warm greys throughout. In addition, we included accent colors of lovely  purple, bamboo and green (of course). Lastly, if you’re a grower, you should contact them about incorporating DriFlower into your operation today!!

I hope I have the opportunity to create more websites for this industry. Building this one was fun and challenging.

DriFlower.com New Website Launch

 

Client Links

If you need a new website or another online service, please visit some of the sites I have designed using the links to my clients below. Many of them are also represented on my Portfolio page, where you can read my comments about the project. While I’m always happy to start from scratch when building new sites, any one of the sites below could be reproduced and updated with your own content to save on costs.

Oh, it’s SO embarrassing! As they say, the cobbler’s kids go barefoot…and the we designer’s website is chronically in need of updating! Contrary to what you see below, I did continue building new website in 2019, and have even gotten one completed already in February 2020. I’ve updated the links below to include the best projects from 2019-20 to date on 2/18/2020.

New websites are underway now and there are more waiting in the wings. I’ll try to be better about updating this post wo there will always be links to my best and most recently completed sites for you to see.

**   E-Commerce examples

*** Custom websites I’m exceptionally proud to have designed and/or customized.

Web Design Clients:

Websites for Small Business

  • ** ***DriFlower™ The Original HangHarvesting™ System – NEW! 2020 new website.
    Custom e-commerce website, https://DriFlower.com! The site went live on Saturday, August 1 after starting work on June 3. Many grateful thanks to DriFlower founder and CEO Jay Larkins for the opportunity! Kudos to Marketing Director Jon Griffin for a productive working partnership on the site design and content. #DriFlower makes #hangharvesting equipment that reduces harvest time and cost while preserving precious flower from harvest to trim. Revolutionizing the cannabis and hemp industries with game-changing harvest equipment! Thanks for the referral, David!
  • *** The Indigo Grill NEW! 2020 new website. Tara and her daughter Beth opened this great restaurant in Ruch, heart of the Applegate Valley, just one month before calling me to create a new website for them. Then things got so busy they had trouble getting information and materials to me…and then the coronavirus pandemic happened. This gave them more time to work with me and the site progressed rapidly from there, complete with coronavirus updates and new takeout menus. it’s no surprise that these talented women rocketed to success! Their food and service is exceptional and they are both lovely people and attentive hostesses. Thanks for the referral, Lauren!
  • ** *** Hot Diggity Dog Wear NEW! 2020 new website. Nadine recently moved to our area and wanted to reinvent herself after 40 years of professional patternmaking. Her adorable fleece dog coats and hoodies(!!) have made her an overnight sensation in town, and her dog bandanas and scarves keep beloved pups cozy when it’s not cold enough to cover up with a coat. This site features a full e-commerce online shop with a Facebook mirror shop, customer action shot gallery, and more features are coming soon. I designed the logo and the website from scratch. Adorable website and products, and a joy to work on. Thanks for the referral, Paul!
  • *** Affordable Catering Orange County NEW! 2020 website conversion to WordPress and Redesign. Al is a caterer and SEO marketing expert in Orange County, CA. I created a great website for his NYC Cafe & Catering business a few years ago and he sold the business in 2018. His catering website needed to be converted to WordPress in order to make it mobile-friendly. Then the scope of the project changed to include redesigning many segments of it as well. In the end, a tasty site that definitely encourages San Juan Capistrano locals and visitors to call him for their catered events and corporate lunches! Thanks for the referral, Christina!
  • *** Giclée Yoshimatsu NEW! 2019 new website. A dear friend of another client of mine, the proprietor of Giclée Yoshimatsu decided it was time for a website to complement his flourishing fine art printing business. I’m grateful that he chose me to do the work, as it’s a lovely, minimalist site with certain traits that set it apart from the rest. Yoshimatsu offers fine art printing both in Arkansas where he’s based and throughout the West. He also does his own fine art photography, which you can see on the site. He has connections to places where West Coast artists can show in the Southwest, making him a doubly valuable ally. Artist Genie Talbott, mentioned below in the Websites for Artists section, has used him for her fine art prints for years. Artist Brenda Mills Brannan, mentioned below in the Websites for Artists section, liked the layout of his new website so much that we used it for her new website, too. Thanks for the referral, Genie!
  • *** Tachi Skin Care NEW! 2019 HTML to WordPress conversion and hosting migration for an aesthetician who started her practice in southern Oregon but needed a fresh online presentation after moving to Portland. We preserved the design of her existing website while converting it to the WordPress platform, adding new content and features, and hooking her up with a blog and Mailchimp newlsetters. Thanks for the referral, John!
  • ***Spa Jacksonville 2018 HTML to WordPress conversion and hosting migration for a long-established and beloved local business. We largely preserved the minimalist, clean and spare design while adding new content and features, including bios for each of the professionals on staff. Look for a new ecommerce feature (Square) with Spa’s custom skincare products AND for the therapists of Spa to begin blogging soon! Thanks for the referral, Mary!
  • ** ***American Memorycraft 2018 New website for American MemoryCraft in Grants Pass. Owner Eli Beard (also known locally as the owner of Rogue Art Glass) employs 12 master glass blowers to create the company’s gorgeous cremation urns. Photographs of their work made creating a beautiful website a delight, and Eli’s desire to include plenty of interesting historical information and more made it a well-rounded site as far as content, too. The WooCommerce catalog that becomes a full-featured online shop when a member (limited to his wholesale national distributors, which include Forest Lawn and more industry-wide stars) logs in was a complex undertaking, but it’s working beautifully and has prepared me to do more sites along these lines.
  • *** Talent Club Live 2018 New website for the Talent Club, a beloved and historic dive bar in Talent, Oregon. The new owners of this classic venue wanted to put their emphasis on live music. In addition to local bands and comedy performers, they book loads of bands traveling up and down the I-5 corridor, so it’s become a real mainstay as a local venue showcasing top-shelf live music. Though a one-page site with modest content, the design is unique and includes an event calendar I update regularly with the concerts and comedy performances performing there the following month. NOTE: We are adding several significant updates starting in February 2020, so watch for new content on the website! Thanks for the referral, Lauren!
  • *** Home For Sale Site – 2018 New website for an individual putting her Three Pines Ranch custom log home up for sale. An experienced home renovator and reseller, she wasn’t satisfied with the online presentation her realtor had established. We worked hard on this one and in the end we dispensed with the photo gallery, using the video with pictures of the home to provide this essential element. This site could easily be converted for the sale of any home, and adding a slideshow of images of the home would be a simple addition. THIS SITE IS NO LONGER ONLINE. PLEASE CONTACT ME IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO SEE THE LAYOUT AND DESIGN FOR YOUR OWN REAL ESTATE FOR SALE WEBSITE.
  • Ryan’s Outpost 2017 New website, SEO, maintenance and content updates for the iconic Applegate Valley business.
  • ** *** Carpe Diem Papers 2017 Redesigned website and massive overhaul for an Ashland, OR greeting card designer with newly added ecommerce capabilities and Mailchimp integration; maintenance and content updates.
  • The Finishing Touch2017 New one-page website for a very talented furniture restoration professional in Grants Pass, Oregon.
  • *** Mountain Sun Botanicals – 2016 Southern Oregon medical marijuana grower site conversion from html to WordPress, preserving home page design and redesigning subpages, setting up custom Google Suite busine emails, SSL.
  • *** Meta Physical Therapy & Pilates – 2016 New website, ongoing maintenance. I just love the new website created for H. Kate Huckert, DPT, in 2016. Her fondness for the Oriental aesthetic is expressed beautifully in this layout and design. I have the same soft spot, for Asian design so this was particularly rewarding for me personally.
  • *** Ruch Hardware – 2016 New website, SEO, maintenance and content updates. This site has personality plus, like its owner, and is quite the community hub in the Ruch/Applegate Valley area. Tiffany updates her blog regularly, so it’s a great community resource. Thanks for the referral, Tiffany!
  • Iris Colored Dreams – 2016 New website, SEO, maintenance for Silhouette, an Ashland woman practicing in the blind psychic tradition. In 2020 we added an e-commerce feature so people could subscribe to read her “Tales That Told Themselves” as she releases them. Some of these Tales are in prose form while others are videos. All are fascinating and add a wonderful new dimension to her website.
  • Ashland Archival Printing – 2015 Website Redesign, SEO, maintenance for a Talent, Oregon fine art giclee printing company. Thanks for the referral, Pegi!
  • C St Bistro – 2015 Website redesign with WordPress conversion, SEO, maintenance for a local casual gourmet restaurant.
  • *** Markwood Heavenly Strings & Cases 2014 Site redesign/conversion to WordPress and content updates for a Talent, OR woman who creates custom harp strings and more. A nicely streamlined site with great graphics to text balance.
  • ** *** Dodero Studio Ceramics – For the past few years I have mostly worked with John Dodero on search engine optimization for his Raku pottery e-commerce (WooCommerce) website. However, eventually this emphasis on SEO demanded that we merge his HTML site with his blog in 2014 and converted from an outdated theme to a modern one that is mobile-friendly while preserving the site’s original design in 2015early 2016. We continue to work together to add new content, new products, and keep the search engine optimization…optimized.
  • Shosha Yoga – 2011 New website.
  • Maggie’s Place – One of my first clients (2010), Maggie’s site is an original html design.

Community, Non Profit & Association Websites

  • Aircraft Design Guide 2020 New website. My client, Don Chapin, who gave me the redesign/WordPress conversion jobs for buddha-consciousness.org, light-path-resources.org, and militarytruth.org, was a military man and an aerospace engineer earlier in his life. There was a particular project he had been closely involved with over the course of many years. This involved researching materials and and creating design recommendations for more effective windshields for military aircraft that would withstand the impact of hitting a bird at jet speeds. When trying to find the extensive research he and his colleague had written up during that time in online military libraries he couldn’t find one thing. It turned out that the lone copy he had of the aircraft windshield design guide they had written was the only one in existence! So he handed me the 2000 page book and asked me to first scan the entire book into a searchable pdf file (a monumental task in itself!) and then create a simple website to share the book with interested parties who might be searching for such a resource. It’s not complex or extensive, but a pride and joy website nonetheless. How often does one get called in to help preserve information gained at great cost that would otherwise be lost forever? I’m honored to have been entrusted with this task. Thank you, Don!
  • *** Lithia Artisans Market 2018 New website for the Lithia Artisans Market (LAMA), in Ashland, Oregon. The volunteers who manage the group’s online presence had been using a free site at WordPress.com for years and decided it was finally time to go for their own self-hosted website. Having access to numerous resources, including their own designer and photographer, made building this site a joy, and the final result sent us all over the moon. We may be adding more features and content to it in the future…if the coronavirus lets this popular outdoor market come back in 2021, that is.
  • *** The Buddha Consciousness2017 Website migration to new host and redesign for the first of three sites owned by an online free church, Light Path Resources. Ongoing maintenance and content updates.
  • *** Light Path Resources2017 Website migration to new host and redesign for the second of three sites owned by an online free church, Light Path Resources. Ongoing maintenance and very frequent content updates.
  • *** Military Truth – 2017 Website migration to new host and redesign for a nonprofit seeking to educate people considering enlisting in the Armed Forces so they know what they’re getting into. Ongoing maintenance and very frequent content updates.
  • *** Jennifer Faith – 2014 Design, SEO and maintenance for a site that supports victims of domestic violence and abuse. Best for a blogger with great featured images, as the Home page depends on excerpts for the design.
  • Art Presence Art Center – 2012 New website for a local nonprofit art gallery. Our ongoing work includes maintenance, social media support and content updates. I also write a monthly article for Art Presence which is published in the Jacksonville Review.
  • *** Southern Oregon Artists Resource – Launched 1/1/2010, currently being redesigned behind the scenes and will ultimately merge with the blog. This is an example of a successful, large and very complex project which I created from scratch. I’m eager to get the new site completed and launched!
  • Southern Oregon Artists Resource Companion Blog, Art Matters – Launched 3/2010, currently being redesigned behind the scenes and will be merged with the directory site above. Watch for the completion of this enormous project!

Artist Websites

  • *** Marie’s BasketsNEW! 2019 New website. Marie contacted me to convert her old website to WordPress and freshen the content. It wound up being a bigger job than we anticipated, and the new baskets we added to the site are stunners! The site is lovely, uncluttered and clean, and the wares are well worth visiting to see!
  • *** Glenn J Hill, AuthorNEW! 2019 New website. I had worked on Glenn’s harp website and his wife’s harp string website for several years when he wrote a book, got it published, and asked me to build a website for it. This was a super fun website to create and it came out really lovely. You might like his book, too, the first in a series of three with more to come soon. Check it out!
  • *** Sculptor Jay WarrenNEW! 2019 New website. Jay’s Warren Sculpture website had gotten quite dated and he no longer had time to update the content himself, so he approached me to redesign it, moving to the WordPress platform. Jay is no joke – his magnificent life size bronze statues and monuments have been commissioned by top players across the country. His work is amazing, and his website is now a wonderful setting in which to showcase it. You really must visit to see his bronzes!
  • *** Brenda Mills BrannanNEW! 2019 New website. Brenda had just moved to the area and her website had been down for over a year as she and her husband built their new home. I was delighted that she contacted me when she was ready to get back online with a new website! Her art is so beautiful and she chose a design format for her site that’s a departure from the usual. Please check it out and see for yourself!
  • *** Indigenous SpiritNEW! 2019 New website. Blindish artist Silhouette created some amazing art as she was losing her eyesight to Graves disease. Check out the amazing videos she made and posted online just for people to enjoy. Thanks for the second website assignment, Silhouette!
  • *** Wing Tips HA! 2018 New website. Artist Leslie Dwyer started this site but quickly found herself out of time, so I took it from the bare bones start she had accomplished to completion. Her goal for this website was to establish the value of her Wing Tips — humorous and uniquely rendered single-frame advice “comics” — prior to presenting the idea to publishers so she can print a gift book containing them. Once I had the site completed, Leslie scheduled a years’ worth of Wing Tips to publish one or two every week. She is quickly gaining a devoted following, myself included, which I truly hope ends up in a successful publishing deal for her. Once you’ve seen this one, check out her Design4Peace.com website, with loads of terrific social justice poster designs! Leslie is amazing.
  • ** Beste Art – 2017 Redesign – I had already worked on artist Patrick Beste’s website for some time, providing ongoing content updates, SEO and SSL installation. In 2017 he decided that he wanted it completely redesigned and an online shop (WooCommerce) for his artwork added. His abstract artwork made designing the site really fun.
  • *** Ray Pague – 2017 New artist website. You must see Ray’s beautiful work and unique style of painting! He and his wife contacted me to create his new website as soon as they moved here from North Carolina, where he is well known for his art. Another artist website of which I’m especially proud.
  • Kirsten Meriwether Art – 2017 New artist website. Kirsten and her sister had gotten her new site started, but Kirsten ran out of time to finish the work herself, so she called me. We got her artwork up in categorized portfolio galleries in no time!
  • Carla J Griffin – 2016 New Website, maintenance and content updates
  • Tina Hutton – 2016 WordPress Conversion, redesign and SEO
  • *** Catherine Anderson, AWS -2015 Massive overhaul including redesign, SEO and security measures. A work still in progress, and one I’m especially proud of.  Be sure to visit and see her award winning watercolors!
  • ** *** Linda Abblett Watercolors – 2015 HTML to WordPress conversion with redesign and added e-commerce (WooCommerce), maintenance and content updates, SSL added 2017. Another beautiful custom site I’m proud to have been chosen to create.
  • *** Butterfly’s Web – 2015 New Website, logo update, maintenance and content updates for a very talented fiber artist who spins natural fibers in to yarn and dyes them with a range of synthetic and natural dyes, some made from plants that grow on her farm! Colorful, beautiful site with an active blog.
  • *** Michael Carpenter, OPA – 2015 New website, maintenance. A very handsome website for an exceptionally talented and experienced artist.
  • *** Pat Moore Photography 2015 New website, maintenance, SEO services for a fabulous photographer. We plan the addition of ecommerce and SEO to this site in 2018.
  • ** *** Kim Novak – 2014 New website with e-commerce (PayPal), maintenance and content updates, SSL added 2017. A conservative site which showcases this beloved actress’ incredibly creative pastel and oil paintings, accompanied by her original poetry. We have worked closely together over the years and the new paintings and poetry we have added just keep making it better and better as time goes on.
  • *** Pegi Smith – 2014 Migration to new host, massive website redesign and SEO, ongoing maintenance and content updates, added SSL in 2016. A complex and extensive artist website of which I’m especially proud. Pegi’s dreamy paintings are amazing to work with and make the site especially stunning visually.
  • Lori Garfield, Animal Artist – 2014 New website, maintenance and content updates
  • Judy Buswell Watercolors – 2014 HTML to WordPress conversion with redesign, maintenance and content updates. Judy’s watercolors have been popular for decades, and the greeting cards and other products her licensed works decorate are best-sellers still.
  • *** Mountain Glen Harps – 2014 New website, SEO, maintenance.
  • Eve Margo Withrow – 2014 New Website, maintenance and content updates
  • Elaine Frenett Watercolors – 2014 New Website, maintenance and content updates
  • ** Wendy Gell Jewelry & Art – 2014 Massive website redesign plus e-commerce (WooCommerce) and ongoing maintenance
  • Billye Woodford – 2013 New Website, based on the customized site I created for the late Boni de Laire earlier that year.
  • Joan Pechanec – 2013 New Website, maintenance and annual content updates. Joan needed a budget solution for her site and I worked with her to display the maximum number of paintings (40) possible while keeping costs at a minimum. The new site landed Joan her first solo show at the Orlando Art Center the same year it was launched! After painting for nearly a year to have enough work to fill the space, she sold nearly all of the works on display. A super rewarding outcome, for sure.
  • Catie Faryl – 2012 New Website. SSL added 2016.
  • Silvia Rothschild Trujillo – 2011 New Artist Website; 2015 WordPress Conversion and redesign.
  • RioQuerencia Fine Art Images –  2010 New custom HTML website for a wonderful fine art photographer.

SSL Installation, SEO, Maintenance, and Hosting Migration Client Links

  • Angela Meer – Author and Writing Coach – I migrated Angela’s very complex website to a new host and extended her existing SSL certificate to cover the entire website in 2016
  • Romancing the West I’ve been maintaining this website for singer/songwriter and producer of Romancing the West® since 2012 with both content updates and site maintenance. During that time I’ve restored it from a hack attack, migrated their website to new hosting, installed their SSL certificate and posted dozens and dozens of tour dates, as well as a few client-directed experiments. I also formatted/edited a children’s book for them in 2017 and design/update the new concert posters for their biannual tours.
  • Stefan Baumann, Plein Air Artist This was a massive search engine optimization (SEO) project that required reorganizing the entire site’s content and pointing two no longer used, but very important, domains to his new site. Working with his assistant Kris Baxter, I also designed and formatted a catalog for a large art show of Stefan’s work in southern California.
  • Talbott Studios – A wonderful artist who specializes in animals (particularly horses and equine art). Genie also designs gorgeous wine labels and more. I began with search engine optimization and content updates for her, and have been working with her site for several years. We will redesign and convert it to WordPress soon.

More exciting projects are in the works and others are lined up. It will be so fun to complete them and share the links here. If you are currently in need of a website, contact me today to get your project underway!

New Website for Veronica Thomas

Veronica was introduced to me by Boni de Laire, whose website I reconstructed in June 2014 and have maintained since then. Originally from South Africa, Veronica has lived in the States for the past 15 years. Since moving to Oregon she has been realizing her dream of becoming an artist, focusing on oil painting. When the opportunity to attend an exclusive painting workshop in Scottsdale, Arizona, arose, Veronica started looking for ways to earn some extra money to cover her travel expenses, and friends agreed to host an art salon at their home in mid-April. Mentor Boni insisted that a new website for Veronica Thomas was a must at this critical juncture, and that it be completed by the time the art salon took place so she would have an online promotional tool to work with. That’s where I entered the picture.

 

When the three of us sat down to discuss the project, I showed them the last site I had completed, www.michaelcarpenterart.com. Veronica liked it so much she went straight for a similar design using the same theme, Divi, by Elegant Themes. As with all my other clients, Veronica’s site was equipped with a full suite of plugins for search engine optimization, page loading speed, social sharing, and of course security to protect the website and its visitors.

 

One of the fun things we incorporated was a Google font with a special effect, accomplished with a css styling trick. Veronica wanted the headings to match the branding on the invitation mailers, flyers, and business cards that her daughter Chloe had developed for her. It wasn’t available as a Google font, but they wree able to find one that was so similar one can hardly tell it’s not the same. The other challenge was that Veronica wanted the header with the effect on the home page, but without the effect on all the other pages. Not only was I able to pull this off successfully, but the research and the execution went very quickly, so it wasn’t a spendy experiment either. I love how my clients push me to learn new things with their challenges! Another arrow in my quiver…

 

The one sticky part of the Divi theme seems to be the banner space. It’s a bit unpredictable how much of an image will appear in this space in a desktop browser, yet the entire image will show in a mobile browser.  I can do quite a bit of customizing, but it’s still tricky. Chloe is proficient with image editing and social media, so she was a huge help in this regard. In the end, our collaboration again resulted in a new website for Veronica Thomas in which we all take a considerable amount of pride. It was completed and launched well before her deadline, Veronica sold enough paintings at her art salon to help cover her expenses during the workshop in Scottsdale, and she is now busily absorbing all the new information she possibly can in Arizona! We will be doing the first update on her site once she returns to indicate which paintings have been sold. Meanwhile, here are screenshots of Veronica’s new website as launched on April 17, 2015. You can click these to view larger versions, and there is a link to the live website in the paragraph below.

 

veronicathomasart.com, new website for artist Veronica Thomas created and launched in April 2015 by Hannah West using a customized version of the Divi theme.
Website created for artist Veronica Thomas in April 2015 by Hannah West.
Screenshot of Veronica's Bio page, showing the difference in the heading style from the Home page
Screenshot of Veronica’s Bio page, showing the difference in the heading style

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Please visit Veronica’s website and help it gain momentum with viewers online and the search engines. Her artwork is beautiful and, from children to wildlife and still life to plein air landscapes, she paints such a wide variety of subjects that it took eight portfolio categories to accommodate them all! Her site is another beautiful example of how the Divi theme can be customized for various purposes. If you would like to see examples of how I have used and customized Divi in other projects, click the links in the sidebar for fashion jewelry designer www.wendygell.com (including e-commerce shop), portfolio galleries of landscapes in oil at www.michaelcarpenterart.com, soft and lovely watercolor portfolios at www.judybuswell.com, presentations for harp strings and related products and information at markwoodstrings.com and the spectacular Mountain Glen Harps website, with one of the most amazing home pages I’ve made to date. This last one is a great way to see what’s possible with Divi.

 

If you like Divi’s flexibililty but would like to see an alternative, I have used a similar, and very popular, premium theme called Avada which I purchased at Theme Forest to create www.jacksonvillechiropracticclinic.com (very professional and takes advantage of numerous shortcodes in the design), and the gorgeous nonprofit ecommerce site www.missioncandles.com, probably the most beautiful site I’ve created yet. I enjoy working with both of these themes and though there are many themes out there I’d love to play with, I do hope to use the truly premium quality Avada again in the near future.

 

Friends take care of friends and extend the family. I’m so happy to have gotten to know Veronica and look forward to an ever-deepening friendship with her. Many grateful thanks to my dear friend and talented artist Boni dé Laire for referring Veronica to me! Please visit Boni’s website to see her amazing landscapes in oil. You will not be disappointed, they are truly spectacular and we will be adding a new painting soon!

 

New website for Michael Carpenter

One of the things I like about my work is that I’m often asked to update or create a new website for an artist who has just moved into my area. It’s a great way to make new friends and keep a finger on the pulse of the arts. Creating a new website for Michael Carpenter in March/April 2015 was one of those “welcoming committee” assignments. Michael Carpenter and his lovely wife lived in Portland for much of Michael’s professional career as a successful graphic designer. They have spent a good deal of time in California and New Mexico since he retired and began devoting his time to the fine art oil painting that fired his passion for art as a young man. They moved here recently, and decided it was time for Michael to establish a presence online. Many thanks to artist and plein air painter Norm Rossignol for referring Michael to me!

 

Michael is not an emerging artist. His experience, skill and diligent study as well as a very refined eye are evident in all his work, so building a new website for him was a real treat for an artist and art enthusiast like me. I prepared a total of 77 images for this project, 36 images of original oil paintings for the website and the rest, images of paintings that are now only available as prints for Michael’s promotional use. That was a LOT of eye candy to soften the technical end of the work for me! And it felt good to be protecting them with the addition of internal metadata and a visible copyright/website address to each image. A little cropping and adjusting to the images themselves was required, though not too much as they were in very good shape when they came to me. A total of about 15 minutes per image on average to make them fully web-worthy and ready to add.

 

On the technical end, Michael’s site was built with a complete suite of plugins chosen for various back end functionalities, including a complete security setup, search engine optimization, Google analytics, and caching for consistent performance and page loading speed. More too, but surely that is boring to most readers. What’s not boring at all are the three portfolio galleries of his paintings, displaying his work in Still Life, Landscapes and Waterscapes categories. His home page displays a few images from each category to give you an idea of what you will find as you continue to explore the site. These image galleries are presented in the new “masonry” style, which I’m very grateful for as it shows each image in its entirety—no unpredictable cropping that deprives visitors of a glance at each painting in its fullness before clicking to view and enlargement. A bio page to learn more about the artist, a customized CV page which includes his shows, distinctions and awards, and a contact page round out the presentation on Michael Carpenter’s new website.

 

Michael’s site received a fair amount of attention when it came to customizing the theme. By default a white background and very modular, the newer Divi theme by Elegant Themes is becoming very popular with my clients for its very nice portfolio layouts. These don’t come with the theme by default, but are available in a separate download if you look hard enough for it. Divi is also a responsive theme, so Michael would emerge on the internet ready for Mobilegeddon with a theme that looks fabulous on both desktop and mobile devices. Michael chose a deep green background with black banner areas and gold text, adding custom gold accents to the theme itself as well. What a great call! The site looks very elegant and refined, and quite masculine without being “strong.” An effective, subtle and understated setting for his wonderful paintings. We “lifted” his signature from a painting and turned it into a site logo and customized a number of additional elements throughout the theme.

 

Even the parallax site banner, which opens the site with an accompanying quote from the artist, got a lot of scrutiny and adjustments before it was just right. We had to make some compromises on this important detail due to the difference in how its displays on mobile and desktop browsers. No one really likes making that kind of compromise, but when we were finished Michael was satisfied that it looked the best it could across the range of device sizes. In the end our collaboration resulted in a beautiful new website for Michael Carpenter that we are both proud to present. Where’s the champagne?!

 

New website, new friends…without any further adieu, here’s a glimpse of Michael’s new website home page, and a few features that people interested in a new website might like to see. You can click therse for a larger image, but please take a little bit of time to visit the live site at www.michaelcarpenterart.com, enjoy all his paintings, and inspect the various features of the website. Who knows, you might find a painting you can’t live without! If you’re an artist, particularly if you paint en plein air, you will find much of interest in his work to be inspired by. Thanks so much for entrusting me with this project, Michael!

Screenshot of www.michaelcarpenterart.com homepage, created by Hannah West Design in April 2015
Screenshot of www.michaelcarpenterart.com homepage, launched April 2015
Curriculum Vitae page. www.michaelcarpenterart.com
Curriculum Vitae page, www.michaelcarpenterart.com

 

 

 

 

 

New Website Launch! WendyGell.com

I am delighted to announce a new website launch for renowned fashion jewelry designer Wendy Gell at wendygell.com!

Wendy’s previous website was beautiful, but the infrastructure needed updating and she wanted a fresh new look that was unpretentious, yet highlighted her past accomplishments, with modern ecommerce features that would enable her to sell her incredibly sparkling and beautiful fashion jewelry designs. We began by streamlining her email newsletter and creating temporary pages with several new pieces of jewelry not previously seen on her website. Then, behind the scenes, we created a new site on the WordPress platform, using the flexible and responsive Divi theme by Elegant Themes so it would display nicely on mobile devices. Then we added a WooCommerce shopping cart with PayPal as the primary payment gateway. Optimized the site and products using the highly respected SEO for WordPress plugin by Yoast and added BulletProof Security to protect her investment in the site and to protect her visitors from malware. Once all the products were added to the shop and everything was ready to go, we migrated the development site to its permanent home at wendygell.com.

What we wound up with is a beautiful site that highlights Wendy’s fashion, bridal, and holiday jewelry designs (along with some gorgeous tiaras for princesses big and little!) as well as her fabulous Gelastic Art, with a beautiful shop that displays subcategories nicely with the modestly priced Nested Categories extension by WooThemes. She made a sale almost immediately! We also included features that will help her continue to grow her following, with social follow and sharing tools by AddThis and a newsletter signup form.

We invite you to visit Wendy’s site and feast your eyes on glittering pop art fashion jewelry to your heart’s desire! Wendy plans to continue adding to her new online shop, so there will be new jewelry items and artwork to see on a regular basis, and there is much to learn about this talented designer whose jewelry has appeared on the Oprah show, been worn & collected by household name movie, television and pop art culture celebrities – even royalty! – and featured in fashion magazines around the world for decades. I am so honored to be working with this amazing woman and her enduring talent, and equally proud of her new website. See how beautifully we can display the items you want to offer for sale online and contact us to discuss what we can do to help you accomplish your own online business objectives.

New Website Completed for Judy Marshall!

"Lilacs", one of Judy's most popular paintings. ©Judy Buswell. All Rights Reserved.
“Lilacs”, one of Judy’s most popular paintings. ©Judy Buswell. All Rights Reserved.

I am delighted to announce a new website completed for Judy Marshall, who paints in watercolor under the name Judy Buswell. Her former site needed a complete revamp, and we converted it to WordPress so she and her husband can manage it themselves. Judy’s work is so lovely, the majority of her pieces being delicate watercolors of flowers and gardens, and it was a joy to work with the images while creating her new site. Why wait to read my writing? Visit www.judybuswell.com today! You can always come back to see what I have to say after feasting your eyes on her watercolor paintings.

Judy offers greeting cards and prints of her paintings, as well as some original paintings on her website, with a simple purchasing strategy – email the artist to order. I think this is wonderful as it requires personal contact between artist and art lover, something many artists don’t realize is an exciting part of buying art for those who love it. There is a contact form on each of the pages with items you can purchase, and the images are large and…gorgeous…particularly those of her more recent paintings. Visit www.judybuswell.com and order some of her pretty Christmas cards today!

Today Judy came to my office for a coaching session on blogging. She will be posting new works on her new blog, and posting about her daily artistic activities when she goes to visit family for a few months next year. I think this is an exciting development, as Judy loves to write almost as much as she loves to paint, and her followers and those discovering her for the first time will be able to learn more about her passion for painting and see works in progress. She wasn’t hugely confident in her ability to do this, but I found her to be a quick study and was not at all surprised when she called me a couple of hours later to tell me she had already been playing with the text in a couple of posts. She sent me some very kind words later…

“Thank you, Hannah. You are a very good teacher, and an even better web designer.”

Among the back end features of Judy’s new art website are search engine optimization, Google Analytics and WordPress site stats, security, backup and restore functionality, social sharing, and copyright protection via Digiprove. I always set up Webmaster tools with Google and Bing after finishing a website, submitting sitemaps generated by the SEO plugin, a highly respected piece of work by Yoast. On the front end is a magnificent presentation of Judy’s artwork with a beautiful premium WordPress theme, specially formatted pages with special galleries to showcase her artwork, a blog, and a visible copyright protection notice in the footer from Digiprove. The sentimental quality of Judy’s paintings does the rest better than I could…

Thanks to the attentiveness of Judy and her husband, this only took a month to complete, even with a number of other projects requiring my attention at the same time and they taking a couple of trips out of the area. Thank you so much for entrusting the renewed online presentation of your paintings to me, Judy!

MissionCandles.com Online Shop is Open!

Rainbow Cheerlites® candles are a Mission Candles exclusive!
Rainbow Cheerlites® candles are a Mission Candles exclusive!

Just in time for the holidays, we have finalized the shopping cart and the missioncandles.com Online Shop is open and ready for your holiday candle orders!

Many heartfelt thanks to Laura O’Bryon, Executive Director of Community Works, the nonprofit parent organization of Mission Candles and the Lithia Springs Program of which Mission Candles is a part, Jim Posey, Director of Education and Residential Treatment Services, and Jason Fauble, the Mission Candles Production Coordinator, for entrusting me with the renewal of the Mission Candles website and online shop.

I can’t say enough about how much I believe in this program. The testimonials of youth who have graduated the program tell the story of how effective it is at helping Ashland, Oregon youth who have experienced debilitating problems of one kind or another and educating them, providing work experience and other essential services, teaching appropriate and effective relationship skills, and turning out young men and women who are ready to become valuable members of the community. The Mission Candles component of the program is financially self-sustaining and a crucial part of the healing, empowering experience that the Lithia Springs Program provides.

I am equally excited about the candles that Mission Candles produces! They make 9″ tapers in a variety of colors to match just about any décor scheme and an exclusive rainbow taper for a lively look. Perfect for candelabra, menorah, wall sconces, candlesticks, and more. Gorgeous. Then there are the Cheerlites®. These “birthday” candles take the cake! These come in 3″ and 8″ lengths (have you ever heard of 8″ cake candles? Their existence was news to me…), in a wide variety of colors to suit any occasion (including Mission Candles’ exclusive rainbow, and metallic gold and silver!), and can be used for holiday centerpieces and other décor applications beyond the kitchen. Not only do they come in a dizzying array of beautiful colors, but you can also opt for one of four different glitter finishes (something I had not seen before and fell in love with) – multicolor glitter, gold or silver glitter, and opal glitter – a subtle and beautiful accent that adds extra sparkle to the table and the eyes of those around it. I am enticed by the thought of delicately sky blue candles with opal glitter to send our daughters for their sons and grandsons’ birthdays, red candles with gold glitter for my mom, elegant metallic gold candles for decorating, and who can live without the royal touch of purple somewhere in their home? The prices are reasonable for such lovely and versatile options, and to celebrate their website’s launch they are offering FREE SHIPPING from now through January 1! I’ll be ordering some myself, and you should too!

Please visit missioncandles.com today and support this important social program with a purchase of candles…for birthdays, holiday decorating, gifts and stocking stuffers. Your friends and family will love them, and you will want them in your own home all year ’round!

MissionCandles.com Online Shop is Open!

 

New Website for Lori Garfield!

Eagle Fisher, Original oil painting of a bald eagle catching a fish by Lori Garfield
Eagle Fisher, Original oil painting by Lori Garfield

Great news! I just got a call from artist Lori Garfield with her approval of the new website I created for her. A couple of small adjustments and she’s ready to fly!

Lori was fantastic to work with, organized and on top of any requests for additional material or other input I sent her way. For that reason her site came together very quickly, completed in two weeks from the day we set her up with a new hosting service (she had free hosting at WordPress.com before, but we wanted to expand the possibilities beyond what they permit on their site) until the final tweaks that marked its completion today.

We built her new site on the WordPress platform using a very nice responsive theme I just discovered, called Fifteen, with a few customizations and using Jetpack mosaic-style galleries to display her art. I love that masonry look, it’s a great way to display a portfolio of artwork that varies in shape and size. Implementing the SEO by Yoast plugin, security plugins, and sharing capabilities put the final touches on her website that make it search engine and human visitor friendly.

Lori is a wonderful animal artist, creating her pet portraits, wildlife paintings and more in oil on canvas. She is a giver, and a portion of all her art sales goes to various animal non profits, so any purchase you make from her, whether an original oil painting, an archival quality giclee print, or a commission for a portrait of your pet, you will also benefit the nonprofit animal organizations she supports.

Lori is not limited to animals as an artist, and you will find some gorgeous landscapes and human portraits in the galleries of her paintings. Please visit Lori’s new website to view her lovely artwork, and consider leaving a comment with feedback on her paintings and her new website, sharing her site on your favorite social network, and giving a gift of art to someone special who loves animals this holiday season for a double blessing! www.lorigarfield.com

Launch of Community Works Redesigned Website!

Community Works logoI am so proud to announce the launch of Community Works redesigned website! It went live last Saturday evening and has already had a lot of visits, as one might expect from a non profit community service website like this. Please like Community Works on Facebook and visit their website to see the amazing work they do in Jackson County for abused women and victims of sexual assault/rape, abused children and families who are dealing with/recovering from severe trauma, homeless and runaway youth, and so much more for some of the most vulnerable and hurting people of Jackson County’s communities.

The programs this organization operate rock! Best known and with a great reputation for the Dunn House Shelter, many don’t know the name of this non profit that provides compassionate and effective help and support for women escaping abuse/domestic violence, or that they provide services for women, children, youth and families seeking to recover from sever traumas and connect them to resources that can help them further. Please visit the new website to learn more about the organization and its programs, volunteer and/or contribute to their work with a tax deductible donation, see their upcoming events and more!

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month, and this Friday at 4pm they are sponsoring a Walk to End Domestic Violence in Medford. Wear purple and join us at the Medford Courthouse to raise awareness of domestic violence!

Between working on Jennifer Faith’s website and this one for Community Works I have learned more than I ever thought I’d want to know about domestic violence. I had no idea that one in every three women around the world will suffer abuse and violence at some time during their lives. This statistic is consistent no matter what country, culture or religion you consider, and those women of faith are in the worst position of all since these patriarchal organizations tend to encourage the men and advise the women to keep silent and not try to leave under the threat of offending God. Most of the time the stigma of domestic violence and the fear of their abuser (and the fear of angering the God they love) keeps them silent and trapped in a situation that will only get worse and could even cost them their lives. Women who do finally work up the courage to make their escape still are not safe.

Problems with the justice system and the ongoing controlling behavior of their former partner results in another ugly statistic: 70% of the women who die from domestic violence are killed AFTER leaving their abusive partner. Women need help, guidance and support throughout all the stages of abuse until they are back on their feet and are truly safe from their abuser, and Community Works provides support for survivors as well as those still in an abusive situation.

You could very well know someone who is secretly hurting, and their life could be in danger right now. Please share the site with your network so they can find help without humiliation and you may save a life.

If you or someone you know needs help, call the HelpLine 24 hour crisis hotline at 541-779-4357 or toll free: 1-855-216-2111

Community Works: Strengthening Lives to Change Community – Strengthening Community to Change Lives