Web design and development
A first-time author (and my longtime brother), Kevin needed a website to publicize his new book, The Unlikely Disciple. I designed a clean, grid-based layout that can grow and evolve at different stages.
More importantly, I set up a Wordpress blog that integrates visually, and used the homepage as a funnel for his Twitter, Facebook, and other social media sites to help his readers keep the buzz going themselves. Averaging more than 10,000 visits a month, the site is the new gold standard for online book publicity, according to his publisher.
One Minute for Peace
Art direction, logo, web design, scripting, Flash animation, video production
The concept for AFSC’s campaign was simple: raise $1.9 million — the same amount that the U.S. spends on military purposes every minute. I took a minimalist design approach, stripping all the usual frills and seeing that every pixel served an essential purpose. Not only was the resulting site among the clearest and most usable I’d ever created, but the straightforward look also reinforced the campaign’s themes: objectivity, information, and ultimately, the stark facts about budget priorities.
Simple can still be fun, though; I had a great time creating custom interface elements like a database-driven progress meter, military tax calculators and counters, a promotional video, and in a first for me, an animated logo. Best of all, the site was a measurable success, helping raise over $60,000 in the campaign’s first month alone.
Roadmap for Peace
Logo/identity, web design, print design
After Obama's election, the American Friends Service Committee and dozens of like-minded organizations drafted a set of principles and recommendations — a roadmap — for changing the course of U.S. foreign policy. My task was to take this important (but dry and wonkish) document and prepare it visually for public consumption.
First, I distilled it into an easy-to-understand web site and full-page magazine ad to help gain public awareness and support. Then I created a more professional-looking layout for the document itself to render it more skimmable, more memorable, and easier for the Obama transition team and other policymakers to take seriously.
As part of its efforts to educate high school students about alternatives to military service, AFSC published a guidebook called It’s My Life! containing dozens of useful ideas and resources.
The web site I designed needed to give a flavor of the book’s look and contents, and also make it as simple as possible for students, teachers, and parents to order copies — in some cases for free.
It’s My Life!
Web site design
Logo and template design, blog creation
We on the AFSC Web Team wanted a blog to help inspire our co-workers, offer them ideas on how to use the web, and have some fun ourselves.
The cake theme inspired my idea of periodically changing the “icing” on Free Cake using different stylesheets. Another reason I appreciated the opportunity to build the site from scratch was the chance it offered to create a more standards-compliant template than we’d ever had before, with better accessibility as a result.
Web design and front-end development
The American Friends Service Committee began as a Quaker volunteer organization during World War I, and ever since then they’ve continued to work for peace and human needs around the world. As a result, they’ve also accumulated almost a century of personal stories and archival photographs.
To share some of the gems from this treasure trove, I created the Friendly Reflections website. It was a rare treat to have so much good photography and content, and it was also my first chance to experiment with a fluid grid, which keeps the photos and overall page in pleasant proportions even when the browser window is resized.
Countdown to Withdrawal
Campaign identity, logo, microsite, graphics, and widget
The day after the Obama administration was officially in power, the American Friends Service Committee launched a campaign to count down the 16 months he had cited during his campaign as a timeline for getting U.S. troops out of Iraq.
I also created a custom Flash widget that counts down the days, which can be embedded in any website to help spread the word, and a dynamic chart to track the number of U.S. troops and contractors deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Graphic design of souvenir booklet
International development agency World Learning recruited my services to help design a booklet of photos and writing as a keepsake for its visiting international scholars as they returned to their home countries.
The clean, elegant layout I developed allowed the beauty of the language and the faces to speak for themselves, while remaining simple enough to be printed on-site in small batches. It far surpassed the original expectations, and it has become one of the organization’s premier publicity materials, even distributed to foreign embassies, funders like USAID, and other partner organizations.
Philadelphia Palestine Film Festival
Although I normally don’t enter design competitions, I gave this one some thought before dismissing the idea completely. After a few idle sketches, I knew I had a good concept to run with. I developed the idea into a logo, entered it, and ended up winning the contest.
My design used the iconic black and white keffiyeh pattern of the Palestinian head scarf to tie the event and its theme nicely together.
Web design and front-end development
I was the first web designer ever hired at the American Friends Service Committee — an international Quaker nonprofit organization — and in my first several months on the job I had the formidable task of revising the site design to be cleaner, clearer, and more consistent among the thousands of pages comprising the web site.
Sarah & the Stanleys
Sarah and her band wanted a poster for a show with the Gregory Brothers and Kelley McRae at a popular Brooklyn music venue.
When she said they wanted to convey their “edgy” music, I immediately remembered a photo I’d taken of my shower once. After a few minutes in Photoshop, we had our concept. To keep it fashionably cryptic, I included only the essential details and let the photography do most of the talking.
Finally, I’m my own client. That has its pitfalls, as my own projects are often the last to get attention, and a designer’s perfectionism makes many of them perpetual works in progress.
But it also gives me a chance to practice what I preach, and a testing ground for all my latest ideas and experiments.
If you’ve got a great idea, let me know.