New beginnings

Posted by on Mar 29, 2013 in blog, news, redesign | No comments

Writer and editor Lindsey M. Roberts needed a new website, one that matched the caliber of design work she was covering. Because she specializes in interior design, architecture and decorating trends, she wanted a website that reflected her discerning eye for design. An interior design junkie myself, I was uniquely qualified for the task, having designed and art directed home sections at two newspapers. I happily designed a mobile-friendly WordPress portfolio site for Lindsey that’s tailored toward the editors who’ll be hiring her.

Step 1: Redesign the home page

before

Lindsey M. Roberts former website
 

after

Lindsey M. Roberts' new website by Tippi Thole of Bright Spot Studio

Lindsey’s former home page offered a bio with contact information. At a glance, we knew what Lindsey looked like but not her profession. The new home page makes it immediately clear that Lindsey is a writer and editor, and it does it in a fun and professional way. The name treatment picks up the logo and color palette from her existing business cards so her branding is consistent. A slideshow highlights her three primary services of writing, researching and editing, with a clear call to action beneath it that’s confident and direct. The featured stories show the variety of stories she writes and edits, from personality profiles to interior design trends. And incorporating the logos of her impressive clients at the bottom of the home page gives her instant credibility. I also added Pinterest to her social media links because it’s such a natural platform for her to build an audience and share inspiration in her areas of expertise.

Lindsey M. Roberts' new About page by Tippi Thole of Bright Spot Studio

Lindsey’s new (and separate) About page now features a beautifully lit, professional portrait and rewritten bio.

Step 2: Reimagine the portfolio

before

Lindsey M. Roberts' former portfolio
 

after

Lindsey M. Robert's new website by Tippi Thole of Bright Spot Studio

Lindsey’s former portfolio was cluttered and confusing. She also had an archive of published work listing about 50 stories—more than any editor could realistically read. I had Lindsey do a much tighter edit of her portfolio, prioritizing stories that had strong visuals. I then created a portfolio with filterable navigation, organized by story type rather than publication name. This takes into consideration how editors will likely use her site and makes it easier for them to find relevant stories. This new portfolio design, with a grid of thumbnail images, also makes her portfolio more scannable and visually appealing.

Lindsey M. Roberts' new website by Tippi Thole of Bright Spot Studio

Portfolio projects now feature an explanatory excerpt with large images or slideshows to take advantage of the beautiful layouts and photography that accompany Lindsey’s stories. Links take users directly to the publication websites where they can read the stories in their entirety.

Lindsey M. Roberts' responsive website by Tippi Thole of Bright Spot Studio

Lindsey’s website is no longer a glorified business card. She now has a professional web presence that looks beautiful on a wide range of devices. Lindsey says she’s already gotten twice the amount of interest in the three weeks the website has been active than in the previous two years her old website was up. I think that’s a sign that her future is bright.

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