Back in January, I made my annual pilgrimage to MAGFest for a glorious weekend of video game insanity. While there, I stopped by Fizz Man’s vendor booth to purchase yet another sculpture. I also took a moment to talk to Ben (the guy behind Fizz Man Industries) about his website. I asked him if he was interested in updating the website, and he responded extremely positively to the idea. He told me that he had been wanting to update his website for a long time, but just hadn’t found the right opportunity to do so.
I gave him my contact details and, after the excitement from MAGFest died down, he sent me an e-mail to get the project started. He basically gave me carte blanche to do whatever I wanted to do with the website. He gave me a list of the pages he wanted to include on the website, and sent me a few examples of sites he liked; then he let me loose to do my thing.
This project was designed and developed completely in-house, using WordPress as the content management system. The site includes a blog (natch), a few static pages, a custom contact form (with dynamic information for commission requests) and a portfolio of his work. The design for the portfolio archive pages is inspired by the enemy select screen from Mega Man 2, while the sidebar is (obviously) inspired by the Mario series of games.
The new website (seen above) is a huge step forward from the old version of the site (seen to the right). The previous incarnation of the website was developed in Flash, required the user to pop open a new window just to view the site, used auto-play music in the background and required Ben to manually edit HTML code to update any portion of the site (including the news).
The new website, as mentioned above, is built with WordPress, allowing Ben to use a visual (WYSIWYG) editor to modify each individual blog post, portfolio entry and page on the website. Gone are the days of trying to dig through convoluted HTML code; so, hopefully he’ll post new updates regularly.
This project was a great deal of fun. I was able to develop a design completely from scratch, based around a fun concept (video games – classic ones, at that), and had fantastic content provided by the client (seriously, if you’re bored, read through a few of the blurbs Ben created for his portfolio entries – I guarantee they’ll get a chuckle or two out of you).
Take some time to check out his new site; and while you’re there, be sure to check out his portfolio. He does amazing work, and I’m sure he’d be more than happy to sculpt something just for you.