isaac james creative // a jshipley design project.

Early on, we knew that The Salt Design Project would be all about creating websites that are unique to the artist in regards to both their personality and their work and being an artist myself, I knew first hand the importance of having a web presence that was not only well-designed, but also well-artciulated. I knew the importance of developing and maintaing a consistent brand and image and creating a space on the web in which people could connect with me as an artist and also get at sense of my style, vision and imagery. Coming from a background in communication studies and art, I’ve long been fascinated brand development and how it is achieved through imagery and design.

As we began considering taking on some site design projects, I realized rather quickly that in order us to accomplish our primary objective, we would need to refine our process and develop some rubrics and systems that would help us understand, extract, interpret, articulate, and display the image that any given artist wanted to convey. We needed to get them and then somehow, we needed to take what we got, and turn it into something aesthetically pleasing, engaging and relevant to their audience/market. So needless to say, we our work cut out for us. And I being the figure-out-who-they-are-and-what-they-are-about and make-it-all-look-pretty guy, I had to establish and refine my creative process.

And that’s when we decided we would prime the proverbial pump with Isaac’s custom Showit website. Isaac needed a site the showcased his performance art as a musical theatre actor and his visual art as a photographer. We wanted the site to be a hybrid because the bulk of his photography work is in the same sphere, and we saw significant crossover in terms of markets and reach. We wanted those interested in his theatre work stumbling upon his production photography and headshots because, well, they are the people who would hire him for such gigs. And those who were coming across his photography, would then stumble onto his theatre work and perhaps book him for gigs in that vein of work. With those goals in mind, we created and their are essential two separate sites with a consistent vibe and feel through and through. The theatre side is more squeaky-clean, masculine and in line with the leading man roles he plays on stage, while the photography side is a bit more playful, quirky and upbeat to reflect Isaac’s personality and show his fun-loving and authentic approach to photography.

Look At This Check Out Your URL INSPIRATION
Since we knew that we wanted the site to have the same overall vibe in each section we had to pick a style that would work for both. Isaac loves simple and clean design yet he wanted there to be a level of warmth, energy and playfulness infused as well. He loves all things vintage, but not in an Anthropolie way, but in a masculine, Restoration Hardware kind of way. But the site need to be sleek and sexy, yet quirky and fun. We looked to J. Crew, Dolce & Gabanna, Details, GQ & Vanity Fair and looked to old school portraits of James Dean, Elvis and Jonny Cash. Here’s the board we came up with….

And here’s what resulted…

The site features a simple navigation bar for easy control and movement between the pages. We did an awesome hover over about page that is interactive and allows viewers to get to know Isaac a bit.

Isaac wanted a fun quirky contact form for his photography section and we ended up doing a sort of mad lib thing and people love it.

We also did lots of custom, clean image galleries which have captions and completely custom navigation controls.

Both the photography and theatre section have a “projects” page which features Isaac’s current projects and latest happenings.

Of course, Isaac need brand new photos to go along with his bangin’ new site. So for the theatre side of things, we did an editorial-esque shoot on stage at his alma mater. Karen was sweet enough to work the lights so we could create some awesome theatrical effects and add some drama to the shots. We opted to have all the images in black and white and I just love them so. Here’s what resulted….

Hot diggity damn! That’s my man! :-)

I can’t tell you how many times a day, Isaac does that pose on the right. Haha. So typical.

We had Karen lower the lights for this one so we could get a cool back lit effect and also have a very back-stage, behing-the-scenes vibe to it.

Isn’t he adorable? Sigh.

I love this pairing…

And of course, a few dressing room shots…one of which we ended up using as the opener for the theatre side of the site.

For the photo side of the site, we did a more casual lifestyle shoot in a park and around Pasadena. I even snapped a few frames of him while we were eating lunch afterwards at our favorite Mexican restaurant across the street. Here’s a few of my favorite frames from that shoot.

This effect is not something I usually do, but I was experimenting with shooting at a higher aperture and I quite like the result. It has a film-y look to it…

I adore this next series…

And finally, the shot from Lupita’s. Bam!

Since the launch of his site back in June, Isaac has seen a significant increase in his photography bookings and has since even signed with a musical theatre agency. It was his website–that of course showcases his talent–that got him a meeting in the first place. He’s had over close to 2,000 hits and nearly 16,000 page views! His website coupled with his strong Facebook and Twitter presence has definitely helped his business gain the momentum it needed to get going. While Isaac had quite a bit of expedience both behind the camera and on stage, he’s website has helped him establish even more legitimacy and presence in both industries respectively.

The end. Be sure to check out his site HERE and lave him some comment love and of course, if you’re interested in seeing more of his latest goings-in, hit up his Facebook page HERE.

  • David Jay - dude! AMAZING!!!!ReplyCancel

  • Nikki - Howdy Buddy!! Let me just say that your skills are rad and that Isaac is one handsome man if I do say so myself! Loving it! Hope to spend some time hanging out at WPPI with you guys!
    HUGS such…ReplyCancel

    • jeffrey - awww thanks for the blog love. i too can’t wait to hang out at wppi. eeeeeee! :-)ReplyCancel

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