One of the great things about having partners in a fast-growing young start-up is that you get to see them grow as the company grows. In the last two years Mike has really stepped up his game and become an A+ web designer. Not only are his design and Photoshop skills great, but he has all of the other skills that differentiate a designer from a web designer: his knowledge of HTML, CSS, SEO, browser requirements, email newsletter HTML/CSS requirements, etc are absolutely remarkable.
The growth can be seen by just comparing the aesthetics of Tastefully Driven vs. Detailed Image from the launch of our cart about a year ago. Back then we also used too much of a collaborative design process instead of letting Mike “own” the design and utilize our input. I think that gives him – or any designer – the creative freedom to come up with their best work.
Unfortunately the existing Detailed Image design – modified in January – leaves a lot to be desiered in the modern web world. We have plans for a major overhaul (probably by early ’09, although it might take longer because we also want to launch concurrently with some user-friendly AJAXy cart features), but in the meantime Mike has made a huge improvement to the homepage. He plans on going through the entire site and modernizing the graphics and layout in similar fashion, which should be enough to not turn away customers for the time being (you can never be certain if design turns away customers, but it can certainly help add to your professional image).
Great job Mike – can’t wait to work on the next version of the cart!