Creative New Zealand - Arts portal and database

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See more in: Graphic Design, HTML, MySQL, PHP
Creative New Zealand front page as it appeared 1998

Artistic and striking, this designer site also leverages a powerful database and a wealth of funding information.

In addition to coding over 100 content pages, I also steered the creation of the sleek navigation interface and database lookup screens.

My Primary Roles:

  • Image & graphic post-production
  • Content management
  • HTML & Layout
  • Ongoing maintainence

Creative New Zealand is the Government Department responsible for funding and grants to artistic projects.

Working with both a designer from the client, and a graphic artist within the company, I was ultimately responsible for making the ideas and the look work, as we drew the middle line between art and practicality.

The site houses a database of 'Cultural Contacts' - an index of thousands of artists and venues throughout New Zealand. This is browsed using an advanced search, and updated using an online interface.
This database was specially designed by the Helios team in the course of a detailed investigation into the clients current and future needs. It uses a PHP web interface to an SQL ( MYSQL) back end, hosted on the (Apache/Linux) server.

Several other admin and update features are contained within the site.

During the development of this site, I created an online project site. This gave a graphic representation of all the pages, the navigational structure, the progress so far, and possible points of concern or interest. This 'project map' turned out to be very useful when co-ordinating the large amount of content needed, and the metaphor I created has since been adapted and refined in other custom-made project sites and development diagrams.

In the years following the original release and the dissolution of the original design company, I have been called upon to add extra features such as feedback and news forums as well as enhancements to the original database.

The site has since been redesigned somewhat although much of the original functionality and code remains. Screenshot shows the original release.