Posted in Site

Portfolio/database work

Progress on the redesign continues. I now have the entire portfolio entered into a sortable, reusable database. I’ve created a bunch of server-side scripts (ASP) to create each portfolio page dynamically based on two templates. One template drives the bulk of the view pages, another one wipes out everything on the page and makes room for a large version. Pieces can now be categorized and sorted any way I like, anytime. Adding a new piece requires absolutely no page editing. Generate a few new images, update the database with new names, sizes, and descriptions, push it live, and the entire portfolio automatically updates. Each page is daisy-chained together to allow browsing through once piece at a time. That was horrid to maintain with the old flat html files, but now, the order and total instances in each category get updated on the fly.

Who said that a designer could never learn practical self-promoting benefits of server-side scripting languages?

How to Build a Portfolio

I’ve been debating how to build out my portfolio pages for the last few days. The current pages are all flat files that required a ton of work to create, and have been a nightmare to update. I’d like to create a portfolio section that uses one template and pulls all the data in dynamically. It’s not necessarily the template or the scripting to build it that I’m concerned about. But I do need to make sure the means of storing the portfolio data is as flexible as possible. I want the ability to insert pieces into the middle of a category, to sort by name or category, to rearrange or rename categories, and to be able to attach a number of larger versions available for each piece.

Time for major surgery

I started batting around ideas for a redesign of a few weeks ago. Today, I actually made progress by sketching out some rough ideas and planning a simple architecture. The site has basically remained untouched in the four years since I launched it when I founded Stopdesign. Since I’ve made very few updates, it has become merely an outdated brochure of a 3-4 year-old portfolio and philosophy statement. Everything here is still applicable. But I’ve learned and done a lot since I wrote the first few lines of html code behind this site. continued

Something new

It’s with great humility that I hammer out this first post. Humility, because I enter the game way after many others. Humility because others have been practicing and polishing their writing on a daily — or somewhat daily — basis for x years times 365 days. The sheer size and breadth of some of their blogs makes me feel like I’m sitting down at a table full of experienced high rollers with only $5 of tokens in my pocket. I’ve delayed and procrastinated the start of a blog mostly because I’ve wondered if I really have enough thoughts that pass through my head and are worth writing down. Or if the quality of what I wrote would actually merit taking up a few more bytes of server space somewhere in Miami. continued