Time To Spruce Things Up A Bit

It may only be Wednesday but it has been a busy week for new and updated web work. Regular readers already know that ArtsHacker launched on Monday (and has been doing gangbuster traffic!) but there was a good bit of overtime for big updates at both InsidetheArts.com and OrcehstraConsulting.com.

InsideTheArts.com features a new grid style layout for the homepage, a new header graphic, a new logo, and an ultra zen nav toggle that completely replaces the traditional navigation bar. The latter bit of functionality is pretty fun and is one of the latest design trends indicating that mobile usage is having far more influence on desktop user experience than the other way around. There are also new logos for about half of the bloggers; the one for Brian Dickie is particularly fun.

New Inside The Arts

OrchestraConsulting.com was way overdue for an update and the latest design approach is decidedly along the lines of less is the new more. Instead of stuffing service descriptions inside interior pages, everything is laid out on as fluid homepage that uses high contrast full width rows to encapsulate the content. The updated version features a new logo, updated typography, the same nav toggle system described above, a new testimonial module, a good bit of content updates to reflect the shift in my consulting work (not the least of which is an updated client list), and loads of clean flat design.

I’m also in the process of migrating the growing library of media content from stuffing everything into a single page to using a Tumblr style post format for video and audio content. It will make it easier for users to scroll through the content as well as encourage more frequent updating. Overall, there are a few wrinkles to iron out via some of the tablet and Smartphone layouts but it is in perfectly fine shape until those loose ends get wrapped up by the end of the week.

New Orchestra Consulting

About Drew McManus

"I hear that every time you show up to work with an orchestra, people get fired." Those were the first words out of an executive's mouth after her board chair introduced us. That executive is now a dear colleague and friend but the day that consulting contract began with her orchestra, she was convinced I was a hatchet-man brought in by the board to clean house.

I understand where the trepidation comes from as a great deal of my consulting and technology provider work for arts organizations involves due diligence, separating fact from fiction, interpreting spin, as well as performance review and oversight. So yes, sometimes that work results in one or two individuals "aggressively embracing career change" but far more often than not, it reinforces and clarifies exactly what works and why.

In short, it doesn't matter if you know where all the bodies are buried if you can't keep your own clients out of the ground, and I'm fortunate enough to say that for more than 15 years, I've done exactly that for groups of all budget size from Qatar to Kathmandu.

For fun, I write a daily blog about the orchestra business, provide a platform for arts insiders to speak their mind, keep track of what people in this business get paid, help write a satirical cartoon about orchestra life, hack the arts, and love a good coffee drink.

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