Research is a big part of my process when I work on a project. I find out as much as I can about the individual or company before I start designing so I can better assess their needs. For this project in particular, our clients, Ann Rolke and Amber Stott provided examples of related websites and what they liked about them.
The next step was to identify the content and structure of the site. The organization was important because it is a very content-heavy site. We had many discussions with our clients to figure out the best way to do this.
While we were structuring, Emalee and I came up with a few designs and presented them to our clients. They decided on the design they liked best and borrowed some elements, such as, the drop-down menu from the other designs.
Once the design was finalized, Emalee and I got to work on the coding. We started by breaking out the design in html, creating a css style sheet and measuring everything out to fit our format and layout. To begin, we focused on getting the home page of the site looking the way we needed.
After we installed WordPress and got our home page styled, we started setting up our structure for pages and categories using various PHP loops and functions. We changed the pages from the initial set up in a way that allows for our clients to write static content while other content displays dynamically on the same page.
There are two different sidebars being used for this site. The blog page is using a sidebar that is typically used with blog sites and includes the categories and archives. Some of the pages are using a different sidebar that pulls content from other pages dynamically. For example, this sidebar shows an area for sponsors where our clients can easily swap out the images and links if those sponsors change over time. In addition, the top of this sidebar shows a featured event which will change as the events are added or archived.
The recipe index was formatted differently from the rest of the site. This section will grow over time, with the addition of more categories and recipes. It was set up so that our clients can add images and content using a guide in the back-end of WordPress.
After an 11-week process, we have a site for California Food Literacy Center. Our clients are very happy with the final outcome.