Icetrax approached us regarding their existing site. Their site was being run by a family member and had been successfully for a number of years. They saw some of our other work and enquired about a site designed by us.
Following a discussion with Icetrax we came up with an outline for the new web site. As they are breeders mainly of Siberian Huskies, and Alaskan Malamutes, both sled pulling dog breeds they requested an a image incorporating snow or mountains with possibly the northern lights overhead. A suitable picture was found in our archive, although this was taken in daylight. The picture was darkened and tinted to look like night time. Once we had the base image with a dark sky we then added the effect of the northern lights, this gave Icetrax exactly the look they required without the need of buying in photographs from outside sources. Following the basic image design we added the dogs head and blended it in with a soft fade into the main image.
Icetrax mentioned that they would also like to add their akitas (registered with the kennel club under the Shykiss name) to the site so we added the dogs head to the right and again faded it in to the image with a soft fade.
The text styles in the masthead were chosen to be complimentary to each other but at the same time individual to each of the two names that were applicable to the customer.
Once the masthead was approved by IceTrax we went on to develop the rest of the layout. The prime concern initially was border and background colours. We chose these to compliment the masthead. You'll notice the left and right edge border change colour just below the masthead. We found this gives a crisp edge to the main body of the page.
As the main page contents were centered in the viewable area a dark blue border strip left and right looked too plain so after playing with a few ideas we created the subtle dog paw print embossing in this area. Enough so it does not look plain but not so bold as to detract from the main page area.
Due to the many pages within the web site a menu-system had to be devised that not only kept the look and feel of the site but also was easy to navigate and use. The drop down menu was created and themed to match in with the other elements. Additionally the menu system had to cope with fall back to a mode safe for users who have limited browser features.
Again IceTrax were consulted before we went ahead and started adding content, they were happy with the look and feel of the work so far and we started adding the content to the site. They provided us with the pictures of the dogs and other pictures which we resized, cropped and colour adjusted to get the best from the image, finally fitting a border to the images. The images were positioned on relevant pages and the text added to make up the pages content.
Icetrax requested a guest book and rather than outsourcing we write our own code, this meant Icetrax guest book was written specifically to match in with their site and pages. This in-house development ensures seamless integration with the site and Icetrax gets the guest book entries in the format they would like. All guest book entries are notified directly and automatically to Icetrax by email and they administer them via the use of a simple password protected pages and on line forms.
Icetrax site took about two week to develop although much of this was as they had to wait for suitable weather to get pictures of the dogs. Icetrax have asked us to maintain the site for them and we add pages or change content as part of the contract.
We look forward to a long and happy relationship with Icetrax. See the whole site at http://www.icetrax.com