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Process

How to succeed (and sometimes fail).

We’ve written 95 blog posts about Process. View all topics »

  1. Crafting for the Author Experience

    I am currently the Author Experience Lead at Happy Cog and I’ve been making websites for the past 12 years, starting in middle school. I’ve been involved with the ExpressionEngine and Craft CMS communities for the bulk of that time.

    At Happy Cog, we pride ourselves on the level of attention and detail we put into planning our CMS projects, which extends deeply into thinking about the Author Experience – an area that is typically neglected.

  2. Going Off Script

    I have a confession to make: I was a theatre nerd in high school. The heights of my nerdom were reached when I joined an improv troupe that was aptly named “Awkward”—a ragtag bunch of 16-year-olds literally making it up as we went along. Perhaps you remember our renowned performances at the local Chick-fil-A?

  3. Help, I’m stuck!

    I looked at my screen from far away, went for a walk, and took a break. I find myself pushing around the same elements in Photoshop in different arrangements with no success. I’m focused on requirements, but letting them dictate my choices. Time is running out. It feels like there is no room left to experiment—that it’s just time to get the job done. My comp’s arrangement isn’t working. Is it too late to come up with something fresh?

  4. A Key Player on a Wicked Team

    3/10/16

    by Abby Fretz

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    Recently I attended a workshop run by the legendary designer and boundary-pushing problem solver, Bruce Mau. The workshop, hosted by PennPraxis and the Penn Institute for Urban Research (PennIUR), focused on a large scale (citywide) question, “How Do We Design a More Equitable Philadelphia?”

  5. A Tale of Two Launches

    We’ve launched two projects with NYIT and Philly.com in two weeks and it’s got me feeling reflective. It’s easy to get swept up in the excitement of a launch, especially when I’m so very pleased with the results, but a faithful launch isn’t always certain.

  6. Distributed yet synchronized

    I just returned from a whirlwind trip to Brooklyn with four of my coworkers. An all-day client workshop was the reason for the visit but we also squeezed in my first employee review (over tagliatelle, no less) and a team dinner. I spend most of my days away from the Philly office, working in my studio in Baltimore. So it’s refreshing (and fun) to see my colleagues in person.

  7. Switching it up

    A few weeks ago, I left my comfortable, everyday life in Philadelphia to travel by myself to Southeast Asia. I learned about the culture and history of the areas I traveled to, but the most important lesson I took away was that it’s necessary to switch up my normal ways of life in order to grow. When I came back to the States (and work), my fellow designer Dana and I were given the opportunity to – well, wouldn’t you know it? – literally switch it up.

  8. Using the distraction

    The night began innocently enough. Now it’s two in the morning, and the best I have to go on is a sense of irony that’s settled in my lower back. Distractions on top of distractions.

  9. Divide and Conquer

    You’ve kicked off a website redesign project for a new client. Between negotiating contracts, facilitating a dialogue with stakeholders, and establishing a deep understanding of your client’s content and design priorities, you’ve arrived at a list of pages to represent a journey from old to new. These pages likely represent templates from which a site-wide design system comes to life. So you return to your desk, work for weeks and months, and snap all of those pages have been designed and coded, and you’re finally ready to share your work with the client. Right? Not so fast.

  10. Get to Know Your Work

    I decided to experiment with keeping a journal of my projects: an iterative, running log that captures all the small day-to-day decisions made internally or with the client, in one place. It began as a way to keep myself more organized, but I’ve noticed a few benefits to this practice, and overall, it’s been a way for me to get to know my work much better. Unexpectedly, presenting my design work has become much easier, as this journaling has been a way for me to rehearse and commit to memory exactly what happens when anything is clicked, why I made each design decision, and how this will all come together in the CMS.

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