I designed my first two websites pretty much by myself and I'm quite certain the average web surfer knew this at a glance.
Finally, as time and resources allowed, I called on the expertise of a few talented individuals I happened to meet along the way. I might even be related to one of them.
We'll start with the one I met along the way.
Nathan Clement is the author/illustrator of several picture books that I'm a little bit crazy about.
DRIVE is an unexpected view of a day in the life of a truck driver.
JOB SITE is an equally fascinating look at a construction site.
I love these books for their unusual angles, vivid colors, sparsely worded story lines, and the gentleness they exude.
I bumped into Nathan at a Highlights Workshop, called "Author In The Spotlight". After seeing his beautiful work, I began to explore the idea of having him design my website.
I'd already begun the webpage dialogue with Betsy Moyer. She's the one I'm related to. Here we are, talking search engines and meta tags. Do you think she looks like my niece or something?
To design the website I set up a series of three way emails. I tried to figure out what I wanted and then communicate that to Betsy and Nathan.
Hmmm, what did I want anyway?
Dynamism. Movement on the home page. I wanted my site to reflect the way family photos made me curious about history. And of course I wanted to introduce my books and ways they could be used in the classroom.
I hoped it would reflect my love of old things while having an updated look. Nathan really pulled that off with this photo album layout on a brightly stylized background.
After we ironed out the design kinks, Betsy worked her html magic so that every little aspect of this and subsequent pages looked and behaved beautifully.
She wisely set it up so that I can update it without having to know all that techy-wechy stuff she does. I still need to call on her and Nathan occasionally for major changes but naturally I want an excuse to work with them again anyway!