Rawaan Alkhatib is an old friend from college who makes some really fantastic scarves (amongst other things). I’m a huge fan of her work, so when she approached me recently to create a basic web presence for her, I immediately agreed to do it.
By then, she had already been “on” social media (aka Tumblr, Facebook, Twitter) in addition to having a well-stocked Etsy store and a Carbonmade portfolio. So it wasn’t that she needed to get her works or goods online; there just wasn’t a corner of the web that really was hers or represented her. Content-wise, there were only two things we needed to cover:
- A signpost-style front page that led people to and from her other online presences.
- A permanent home on the web for her professional bio.
We both agreed early on that about.me was not her style and instead began to look up the sites of her favorite artists/writers/illustrators for inspiration. Using their websites as pieces for our discussion, we had a spirited back and forth of what the look and feel of the website should be. I leaned towards having more structure and grid-like elements, and she wanted something more illustrative and free-form. Eventually we settled on using a custom illustration with a clear sections as the centerpiece for the website.
Weeks later, the illustration appeared in my inbox, and from then on it was a simple matter of rigging it up in HTML5. There are two small bonuses that I managed to slip in:
- CSS animations! Go to rawaan-alkhatib.com and mouse over on any of the objects on the page. Do it.
- Integrating Perch, a super simple CMS. This allows her to edit her bio and bio photo at any time, through a web interface. (No FTP involved!)
And we managed to get everything done just in time for her works to be featured on Of a Kind.
See the final results.