The organisers of the Kigali Photo Festival believe that African artists play a crucial role in educating African audiences and this festival will see a series of workshops, events and exhibitions dedicated to the work of Rwandan photographers across a range of genres.
Every Nation Marseille have been around a while - a church plant out of the States reaching out to artists, students, locals and internationals who have made the port city of Marseille, France, their home. This was a first for me - not necessarily a site for a church or an NGO, but a site in an entirely different language! Thank you Google Translate for allowing me to at least understand what the content of the site was, and which elements should go where.
Euan and Romona McCrindle have been living in Berlin for the last ten years, and have been dreaming about making the move to Glasgow, Scotland, to start a church within the Every Nation family of churches. There are so many things on their to-do list what with moving country, settling kids into new schools, and starting the work they feel called to.
Sheryl Mulder, a school teacher based on the KZN South Coast had a dream to start a small school to support children with ASD (Autism Spectrum Disorder), as well as learners who experience developmental delays that make it difficult for them to learn in mainstream classrooms.
Harmonics has been around a while - a collaborative of musicians, percussionists and teachers who host workshops, take people on musical journeys, and help others experience the magic and mystery of music. Paul Boyter, who leads the team, has gathered around him dancers, drummers, singers and other musicians from all over South Africa and aims to blend music and mindfulness into an authentic musical experience.
Ooh Lulu is a wedding and events company based in Cape Town, South Africa. Zahida, the founder, ‘accidentally’ started her business after planning a family neighbour’s wedding. It was such a hit that people started asking her to plan their weddings too!
Bianca Bouverie is a super talented graphic and UI/UX designer who left the city to return to her small town roots and in the process opened up her own design studio. I've had the privilege of working with her on several projects over the last while, and am always impressed by her creativity, fast-paced work style, and no-nonsense approach to design. She isn't afraid to say when something isn't working, which when it comes to design is the kind of tactic that saves us all a lot of heartache!
Casey Polson is runs an interior and property consulting service in Cape Town, South Africa, and she recently came up with a new business idea to launch a monthly subscription box based around interiors and homeware. Each month her team curates a box of bespoke and individual hand selected home items around a theme. The emphasis is on supporting locally designed and manufactured goods.
Nerine Jones’ passion is to help women from diverse cultures discover their personal style. She is a qualified Image Consultant accredited by AICI (Association of Image Consultants International), and founded Styleworx in Doha, Qatar. She contacted me to put together a site for her new business as a personal stylist where she could introduce herself, feature a blog, showcase client testimonials, and advertise a range of services.
Fiona Hobson, a retired high school teacher and farmer's wife, realised that many of the people employed on their Karoo farm were unable to read. She started teaching basic literacy in English and Afrikaans on the farm, and later reached out to the local school in Klipplaat, their nearest town, to see how else she could help. This initial action has become a charity called 'Five Loaves Two Fish.' Fiona, along with her husband Rob (who incidentally was among my first Squarespace clients), asked if I'd put together a site showcasing the work Five Loaves Two Fish are doing among their community as a place to start raising awareness and funds for ongoing reading programs.
Crosby & Smalls is local Durban based business that sells retro and vintage goods. Okay, truth be told, this is a side business that a good friend of mine (Vicky) and I started to fund our travels! We launched last November with a simple strategy for growing our audience on Instagram and Facebook, and selling directly from those platforms. We had it in our minds that at some point we might need to transition to a proper e-commerce solution, but we wanted to give it some time to develop before we committed to the monthly payments. We've loved the personal interaction we have with our customers, and the relationships we're developing as we go along, but have found recently that it is taking up a lot of time and have looked again at some e-commerce options that would suit us.
RiverLife Church on the South Coast of KwaZulu-Natal was ready to launch their first ever website, and wanted a site that would appeal to a cross-section of the congregation from teens, to young families, to more established members of the community. They wanted a welcoming, personal and easy to navigate site.
Kundai Nachito has a fascinating story to tell - one that deals with notions of self, sickness and society. As a young black HIV+ woman in South Africa, Kundai's dream is to create a platform where she can first begin to share her story in the form of prose, poetry and photography, and then invite others to begin to share their stories. She is especially interested in the intersection between sickness and society, sickness and relationships, and sickness and love.
I was toying with the idea of designing a minimal site for a graphic designer based on clean lines and pops of yellow. I was curious as to how it might turn out and put something together. I selected some bright and cheery photography with yellow elements, put together a moodboard and colour palette, and designed a simple site map. The focus of the project was to highlight the design work and let it shine, with a supporting about page, contact page and portfolio page.
Here are some elements that went into this concept site.
If you're a graphic designer looking to showcase your design portfolio in a clean and uncluttered site, please get hold of me to discuss building a site together.
Alessia Pinna is a lifestyle and branding strategist based in Joburg. She wanted a clean, feminine site for her growing design and holistic lifestyle business - a website that would allow her to introduce herself, showcase her portfolio, share customer testimonials, display her range of services and enable her to start to build an email list.
Oribi Gorge is a beautiful farming region just inland from the KwaZulu-Natal South Coast. The Oribi Gorge Guest Farm, a three-cottage establishment on a working farm right on the edge of the Gorge, has been in operation for about 20 years. Although they had an existing site, they felt it was time for an update both of the site and the photography, and asked me to work on something with them.
Harry Gwala Agri is made up of a dynamic group of farmers with a compelling vision for their communities - to set up mentoring relationships, educational opportunities and business connections between experienced and emerging farmers. They're a new organisation based in KwaZulu-Natal and wanted a website and a few design items to launch with a bang, and share their news and progress with interested parties and potential funders. I partnered with graphic designer Bianca Bouverie to produce an informational brochure and Squarespace website to help get the word out there about their project.
1 | Moodboard
Farming tones are obviously usually all greens and browns, and we wanted to keep within that tradition. We were looking for earthy tones, and farm-related imagery within a uniquely South African context. We also wanted to emphasise the critically important role black farmers will play in this project, and as such needed the imagery to carry this across. One of my frustrations with the average stock photography site is that diversity in skin colour, culture and difference is hard to come by. And when you do find it, it is often reinforces stereotypes we're desperate to get away from in South Africa, and indeed Africa.
2 | Style Guide
I paird Montserrat with Adobe Garamond pro for the fonts and brought in the shades of green, stone and black for the colour palette.
3 | Colour Palette
4 | Project Elements
- Website questionnaire
- Site map
- Site Design
- Sourcing of stock photography
- Style guide
- Copy editing
- Brochure design
5 | The Site
Thanks so much to the team at Harry Gwala for trusting me to put their site together. I really look forward to reading about their new projects and seeing how they continue to impact their communities with an incredible dream for this country.
If you'd like to see more of my Squarespace work, here are a few sites I've been working on in the last while.
I was asked to put together a Squarespace site for design competition collaboration between Mike Made This and Vega School. The idea behind the competition was to encourage Interior Design students at Vega to submit lighting design ideas that would then be judged by a panel of design experts. The winner would be selected by a process of online voting, and the design had the potential to be manufactured with Mike Made This.
Zanele Mji, a South Africa writer, researcher and journalist was on the hunt for a minimalist, text-driven site and had hit a couple of roadblocks along the way. It seemed most designers she'd approached, instead of being willing to listen to her design ideas, had tried to convince her to go with an image-heavy approach and were unwilling to budge on this!
When you get a brief from a graphic designer for a photography site, it qualifies as a dream project! Graphic designer Bianca Bouverie designed the logo and site for Courtney Clegg, a wedding, maternity and elopement photographer and asked me to put it together. It really is a pleasure working with visually oriented people who've already put a lot of thought into their project and have a clear idea of what they want.