Though he developed a strong vision for the site after our initial discussions, Mike was more than willing to modify his ideas at all times during the process. I would be more than happy to recommend him.Marty Logan, HealthBridge
HealthBridge has been working since 1982 in Asia, Africa and the Americas and aims to improve the health of vulnerable populations. They help local partners develop and implement appropriate solutions, apply innovative and sustainable practices, and promote effective policies. I was hired to completely redesign and rebuild the HealthBridge website, healthbridge.ca, which is now fully responsive and mobile-friendly.
I built a fully searchable database for HealthBridge’s extensive library of documents that lets the visitor filter the results by region, year, language and more. When a staff member uploads a new document to the library, a thumbnail image of that document is automatically created to make scanning the library more user-friendly for visitors.
On the homepage, I suggested we incorporate the organization’s impressive international humanitarian work, which led to the section labelled “Our Impact,” featuring imagery collected by staff in offices all over the world.
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Mike's technical expertise, design acumen and insights for how to optimize the user experience are superb. We received an enthusiastic response from users of the site in our post-launch surveys. Mike would be the first person I'd call for another project.Barbara Szijarto, Canadian Paediatric Society
The Canadian Paediatric Society hired me to design and build the website Caring for Kids New to Canada, a site that helps health professionals provide quality care to immigrant and refugee children, youth and families. The site was a Web-version of a book that the Canadian Paediatric Society had published, and involved many editors and contributors. I subcontracted a graphic designer colleague to design the logo, and I developed a colour palette and various design elements for the site to emulate that logo. The site was to run on an existing install of the CMS ExpressionEngine, which powered other Canadian Paediatric Society Web properties.
Caring for Kids New to Canada is built with responsive design and is optimized for desktops, tablets and smartphones. The site is available in English and French using a one-to-one language selector so that when switching languages, the user sees the translated version of the current page rather than being sent back to the Home page.
After being launched in June, 2013, the Caring for Kids New to Canada website was profiled on CTV News.
Following are some comments about KidsNewToCanada.ca submitted by members of the target audience post-launch:
“I am just writing to tell you how absolutely thrilled I am to have been forwarded your new website. You have done a beautiful job of presenting information in useable format and language. Thank you so much for putting together such an incredible resource.”
“I LOVE it!!! I will insist that all medical students and residents who complete electives at our clinic use this website.”
“Very beautiful, easy to use, inviting to use. Great links. Working really well and easy. Great job.”
“Excellent. Extremely clear. A great addition to the CPS tools. Very good for residents, sufficiently in depth but with additional resources available. More clear than many online tools I have used before. I will use it to teach students.”
“Excellent resource which I will definitely access in my day to day practice.”
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Mike completely redesigned my website and I'm thrilled with the results in terms of both design and functionality. The best part of working with Mike is knowing my site is in good hands and that he won't miss a single detail.Marlene Oliveira, moflow
Marlene Oliveira is nonprofit consultant and copywriter. In addition to her client work, she also runs the popular Nonprofit MarCommunity blog. Marlene hired me to redesign the website for her consulting business, moflow.ca. She requested that the new moflow.ca be built on WordPress, which is not normally my CMS of choice, so it was a welcome challenge.
I'm a firm believer in the content first philosophy: that a website's content is the thing that gets designed. To that end, I never build websites with predesigned themes. No one should have to force their content into a design template that was made without any consideration for it. While WordPress does require you to start with a theme, since Marlene hired me to design the site as well as build it, I used a very stripped-down theme and customized it extensively.
Marlene had worked with a graphic designer to develop a colour palette and some visual elements for her brand, and she asked me to work them into the site design. Among the elements I created were some textures incorporating the visual elements which Marlene could use as backgrounds for feature images on the moflow blog. Marlene also uses these to promote her articles in social media.
It made sense to me to have different content areas set up to hold different types of content, so that Marlene could post blog entries in one place, testimonials in another, and portolio examples in another. Doing this in ExpressionEngine—my preferred CMS—is very simple, as EE has been storing content in Channels and Custom Fields since 2004. While it took some hacking, I was able to set up several Post Types to accomplish something similar in WordPress.
Marlene had a MailChimp-powered enewsletter that she published regularly. Her primary call-to-action for moflow.ca was to get visitors to sign up for updates, so I made sure to add her enewsletter signup form in several places throughout the site, and of course make it mobile-friendly as well. The design of moflow.ca reflects Marlene's fun, lighthearted brand personality while maintaining her company's professional values, and the colourful module-based layout reflects the focused nature of her work.
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