Many wonderful projects with writers have come my way this year. Here is a website for the Toronto author and psychiatrist-analyst Ronald Ruskin, whose book The Analyst Who Laughed to Death was published in November 2016. The novel includes playful illustrations by the author, which we chose to use on this webpage announcing the book.
I had the honour and pleasure of working with Canada's new Youth Secretariat this summer. The Youth Secretariat, with Prime Minister Justin Trudeaus as Minister of Youth, remedies the fact that there has never been a "Department of Youth" in Canada to address issues specific to youth, nor to hear their voices on issues of national significance. A major project for the Youth Secretariat is the creation of the Prime Minister's Youth Council: a group of 30 young people from across the country who will meet with and advise the PM directly several times per year.
This July, the first wave of the application process was launched; the second wave was just completed in October. My task was to create an inclusive and inviting design for the Youth Council application process, within the very limiting constraints of the Canada.ca website template. This template serves all of the Government of Canada web pages, but we wanted this page to stand out as something special: inclusive, inviting, and youthful. I chose cheerful, warm colours, and a banner graphic of colour blocks that loosely suggests a gathering, a coming together. There are 13 blocks, representing 13 provinces and territories. The typography is clean and crisp, and has to work equally well in both english and french, separately and in unison.
The project trended on Twitter when it was first launched in July, and has received extensive attention in the national press. There was another wave of interest again in October as the second round of applications opened, and the first meeting with the new council members was held in Ottawa. It is very fun to see our PM and these articulate youth presenting on the national news, with my graphics behind them!
Continuing in the literary theme, this has been a great year for projects with writers! I am delighted to announce the launch of a brand new website for Canadian cultural treasure, Lawrence Hill. It has been a pleasure and an honour to bring this website to life!
Lawrence Hill has published many books and articles in his professional life, and there has been quite a lot of buzz around his two most recent novels: The Illegal and The Book of Negroes, as well as Blood: The Stuff of Life which was both a non-fiction book and a Massey Lecture series. The challenge with this website was providing clear access to this abundance of material. The quality of media surrounding these works was a gift, however.
Thank you to Lawrence Hill for being such an enthusiastic and gracious client. And thanks to Miranda Hill for recommending us for the project!
Miranda Hill is such an inspiring client. We have worked together for several years now. This is the second iteration of her author website. Our first project together was a website prepared for the launch of her book of short stories, Sleeping Funny, published in 2012. We have since worked quite constantly together since then on Project Bookmark Canada, and look forward to the next book, in progress! Miranda is also active in bringing in The Longer Table, a collective that has fundraised successfully to bring Syrian refugees to Canada.
Wrapping up 2015, I had the pleasure of launching a website for Connie Reeve and her new mediation business, Reeve Resolutions. Connie Reeve is a prominent Toronto lawyer, moving away from law practice into the delicate work of mediation. We used some of her beautiful photographs from a recent trip to Iceland as a complement to the tone of calm we wanted to convey. I also designed business cards and stationery for Connie, using a simple symbol of conflict resolution: two circles with competing interests will find resolution focusing in the area of common ground, where the two circles intersect. The skilled mediator works to find that ground so that both sides are satisfied with the outcome, a great alternative to the winner / loser frame of an adversarial competition before the courts.
The website is responsive, of course, which means it resizes to a standard range of screen sizes. I like the lateral setup on a wider screen very much, breaking a little from the constant vertical-scrolling orientation of the web. It's nice to spread out a little. On a narrow screen the layout is forced to vertical, and it will work just as well.