cookingnutritious.com: A community for sharing recipes online
When I was approached to produce cookingnutritious.com, I was excited about the concept. Building a community where people could share recipies and their knowledge and concern about nutrition in the same network. It’s a brilliant concept and I’m proud to have produced an excellent website for their community.
It was a really exciting task to design the visual experience for cookingnutritious.com. Starting with the logo, I wanted to infuse bright, vibrant colors, but also colors that evoked a sense of health and fun. I wanted to make the logo seem original, but also, automatically evoke a sense of familiarity and trust, especially when it comes to food and health. What I came up with, is a symbol that evokes the image of a “farm fresh” seal, but to juxtapose the website’s name: Cooking Nutritious. In expanding on the logo, it made sense to bring in all the farm animals and the farm products into the same plane and kind of stack them up, as if to say: “these are all the things this logo represents”.
After the logo was designed I added the visual elements to the website mainly to compliment the theme that I started with. I added some Navy blue, to sort of ground the wild, bright orange and green. After that simply not be afraid to splash it with more colors of organic things. An orange fruit, splashes of yellow pasta, a red tomato, a green leaf, some light blue to represent the sky. A smattering of bright and deep colors legitimized by the images of food to hold the theme.
Audio and Video production
In addition to building and designing the website I had the opportunity to create a 2 minute web teaser video and use it for the Hero section of the home page.
Adobe After Effects
I used After Effects to design the splash animation. It’s a really great program for that kind of thing. I used some colorful images of food and then sliced those images up and threw them into a slide show by animating the slices. Then when I’d finished piecing together the first five slides, I peeled them all back to reveal the logo underneath.
It may or may not surprise you to know that I produced the original music, for the teaser video, by myself. I’ve been producing commercial music for only a short time now, but I have been doing musical activities, and learned musical theory when I was growing up. Ableton Live is a great software for mixing and producing music together into a cohesive and professional product.
I used Adobe premiere to edit the video. The video clips themselves come from videoblocks.com. I am a member of videoblocks.com and so I have access to an immense library of stock video footage and my membership gives me the license to use it even if I cancel my membership down the road. But considering I was able to get such great quality stock video, for such a reasonable price, I think I’ll continue to value that membership. I had so many amazing options for putting together this video that I was able to create a coherent visual experience with the video.
The video starts by showing raw vegetables and people selecting and handling raw foods from the market. Then the video shows images of people preparing dishes, and using their tablet while preparing the meal. This implies that the website is an interactive experience for instructing and tutoring people on how to prepare their dish. Then the video shifts the theme to plating the meal and pulling things out of the oven. Finally the final segments of the video show people interacting with other people, presumably their family and/or loved ones. The video ends by implying that the result of using the website to prepare a fine meal, results in closeness and happy moments with the people they are closest to. The sequence of all of these ideas, creates a message to people without the use of words. It shows them the value of cookingnutritious.com, without having to explain anything, in 2 minutes.
Search Engine Optimization
I put a lot of effort into the SEO qualities of cookingnutritious.com. It will end up with a really good indexing with search engines. I fine tuned the data structure of the web pages to lend itself to meeting the requirements of google for hentry and hcard microformats. I also produced dynamic XML site-maps and submitted them all to google to get the site off to a great start in being crawled and indexed. There are a lot of very esoteric details that are necessary when it comes to preparing a site for Search engine Optimization. There is a large amount of work to be done in the beginning, but over time and even larger amount of work comes in more slowly in the fine-tuning of the site and its content. It’s an on-going process that can never really be considered finished. Fortunately I got this site off to a good start, which is a lot more than many sites get, in the beginning. Starting out with a strong footing is immensely valuable.
Talk to me about producing your site.
I did every bit of work producing this site by myself. From the website coding, to hosting and technical infrastructure. I did the graphic design and web design as well as the multimedia production and the SEO. Many people are capable of doing some of these things. Not many people can do it, from start to finish, at the level that I can. You may be looking to start a website or an app similar to this. You may feel overwhelmed or you just don’t know where to start. Reach out to me and let me know you’re looking for help.