Weta Digital

Size: 10 template pages

My professional status: employee at Shift

Website client: Weta Digital

Dates: March - May 2008

Categories: Front-end developer, CSS-based layout, ExpressionEngine, Small sites

Brief: to build a set of template pages for the Weta Digital website, which acts as a showcase for their film and commercial graphics and animation work, as well as a recruitment tool for potential employees.

The design was done by Shift in partnership with another design agency, and my job was to build the templates and prepare them for integration by my Shift colleague Tom St George into the ExpressionEngine CMS.

My responsibilities included:

  • Development of the site in CSS and XHTML 1.0 Transitional, which would then be integrated into the ExpressionEngine CMS
  • Close liaison with the Shift programmer in order to ensure that they could easily integrate my templates into ExpressionEngine
  • Hand-coding in XHTML 1.0 Transitional to a standard level of accessibility
  • Extensive testing of the site at all stages of the development process, ensuring consistency across the following browsers and platforms:
    • PC: Internet Explorer IE6, IE7; Firefox
    • Mac: Firefox, Netscape, Opera, Safari
  • Ensuring that every template and stylesheet had been validated using the W3C Markup Validation Service and that it conformed to XHTML 1.0 Transitional requirements
  • Development of print stylesheets sitewide.

It was quite a thrill to work on the Weta Digital website - they are such an iconic New Zealand company. The structure of the site is very consistent across all sections, with the main differential being the various colourways. I like to code up my templates so that all the changing colourway elements display automatically, with no need for the programmer to set up "current" styles in the HTML of individual pages. The site includes a number of high-quality Flash showreels, which we also integrated into the templates.