Perch Design Studio

Process

How we work

PERCH offers unique and engaging design solutions to socially responsible businesses and organizations. Our process is simple: we listen, analyze your needs, find a solution that fits, then implement that solution with a healthy balance of creativity, practicality, and rigor.

Discovery

Listening, learning, brainstorming

We begin all projects with a kickoff workshop to gather a few more details about your goals, audience and objectives. This is your time to quickly train us to be super fans of your business so we can visually communicate with your audience.

The time that is spent preparing during the discovery phase is directly proportional to the longevity and sustainability of your project. The goal of the discovery process is to settle on solution that fits your needs and budget—be it a website, social media campaign, app, or something completely new.

 

Kickoff & Brainstorming

Workshop kickoff, gathering info, learning session, brainstorming.

 

Research & Data Collection

Focus groups, surveys, interviews, content collection and organization.

 

Wireframes & Sketches

Take what we’ve learned and put it into a visual map, wireframe, or sketches to continue the conversation.

Case Study: Communities
Transforming

The Communities Transforming campaign was developed to create sustainability for Communities Transforming Grant projects and similar MaineHealth initiatives.

Key Features
  • Fully dynamic and responsive design
  • Multiple content types that can be assigned to multiple different data types for cross browsing and referencing
  • Categorized and tagged projects for cross referencing project attributes

Private Site

Case Study: ILSR

Since 1974, ILSR has championed local self-reliance, a strategy that underscores the need for humanly scaled institutions and economies and the widest possible distribution of ownership. 

Key Features
  • Unify the ILSR brand within all initiatives
  • Create a system to easily find articles within a collection of over 500
  • Custom post type for rules
  • Multiple taxonomy structures for better organization

Visit Site

Case Study: Doggy App

The My Dog Loves Maine app allows dog owners (and friends) to explore, share, and save pet-friendly resources in Maine. The app also features a built in sponsorship platform to reward users for adding new locations, sharing images, and checking in often.

Key Features
  • Map directory
  • Listing view of all resources
  • Ability to share photos, comment, and save listings
  • Sponsorship platform

Design

From zero to stunning in 60 seconds

All Perch websites begin from a blank page. We like to begin the process of design with the homepage. We present 2–3 concepts for review and note any feedback or changes. We then follow up with a second review to finalize the homepage design. Next, we move on to the internal pages. With a CMS website, each page is assigned a template—we design each of these from scratch.

 

Landing Screen / Homepage

We begin the design process with the primary interface, be that a home page, dashboard, or cover.

 

Iterate

We typically do 2-3 iterations on the primary interface, responding to client feedback, to establish an aesthetic.

 

Internal Pages

For each necessary (unique) template, we apply the styles established in the previous step, extending them to accomodate the entire project.

 

Tweak & Refine

Adapt the design to feedback from client to build a complete set of mockups.

Case Study: Portland Symphony
Orchestra

Serving the city of Portland, the state of Maine, and northern New England, the PSO is the largest performing arts organization in Maine.

Key Features
  • Minimize redundancy of content population
  • Simplify the users experience for browsing performances
  • Custom WordPress functionality to manage each performance
  • Integration with InstantEncore
  • Filterable calendar by list or calendar view
  • Custom twitter hastag to provide insider information for each performance

Visit Site

Case Study: ILSR

Since 1974, ILSR has championed local self-reliance, a strategy that underscores the need for humanly scaled institutions and economies and the widest possible distribution of ownership.

Key Features
  • Unify the ILSR brand within all initiatives
  • Create a system to easily find articles within a collection of over 500
  • Custom post type for rules
  • Multiple taxonomy structures for better organization

Visit Site

Case Study: Matthew Kenney

Completely custom online learning academy that distances itself from the sterile and impersonal nature of the typical online education experience.

Key Features
  • Start from scratch: design an online educational experience that represents the simplicity and beauty of the MK brand
  • Accommodate an ever-increasing number of courses, users, etc.
  • Laravel-based custom content management and delivery system (PHP, MySQL)
  • CSS3/HTML5-based responsive front end interface
  • AJAX-based media uploads
  • Third-party audio and video integration

Visit Site

Production

Making the magic happen

Whether we’re preparing a print project to go to press or developing the your from-scratch mobile app, the production phase is full of technical jargon that you don’t need to know.* This is the time when we convert designs and concepts into an interactive reality. There will not be much to see as we work, but we’ll keep you posted on our progress during this phase.

* So you want to talk nerdy? All of our websites and applications are built upon open source platforms, typically running on a standard LAMP stack. We develop our sites from a mobile-first approach using industry standard practices without shying away from cutting edge features, always keeping graceful degradation in mind. We test our sites for compatibility in IE8+, FF3.5+, Safari 4+, and Chrome 10+. Plus, we ensure W3 standards compliance within the constraints of the approved design.

 

Front end

We begin production with the conversion of design templates to HTML, CSS & Javascript, working out any small user experience details along the way.

 

Back end

This is where the heavy lifting happens. Depending on the project, this could be WordPress, Laravel, node.js, Django... whatever best suits the project needs.

Case Study: Loon Echo Trek

The Loon Echo Trek benefits the Loon Echo Land Trust, which preserves 3,750 acres of land and maintains 22 miles of trails in the northern region.

Key Features
  • Custom fundraising platform
  • Participants register online through and integrated Wufoo form, customize their fundraising page and collect pledges online
  • List of participants for sponsors to support

Visit Site

Case Study: ILSR

Since 1974, ILSR has championed local self-reliance, a strategy that underscores the need for humanly scaled institutions and economies and the widest possible distribution of ownership.

Key Features
  • Unify the ILSR brand within all initiatives
  • Create a system to easily find articles within a collection of over 500
  • Custom post type for rules
  • Multiple taxonomy structures for better organization

Visit Site

Case Study: University
College

University College offers access to courses and programs from the seven universities at more than 40 locations and online. 

Key Features
  • Custom program post type to manage program specific content
  • Integrated forms to allow users to quickly contact UC for the programs they are interested in 
  • Utilized Wordpress Multi-Site to manage each of the site locations

Visit Site

Case Study: NACS

Interactive data exploration tool for viewing and querying survey questionnaire results.

Key Features
  • Provide an intuitive interface to explore an extremely large data set (>1gb)
  • Automatically generate meaningful graphics/charts from dynamic queries
  • Remain flexible enough to accommodate varying survey questions from year to year
  • Laravel-based custom content management and delivery system
  • AJAX-driven CSV exporting tool
  • CSS3/HTML5-based responsive front end interface

Private Site

Beta & Delivery

Testing... for awesomeness

Once we launch a website, app, or campaign, the job is not over. This is a time to get to know your new product and ask us questions. Depending on the project, we often advise a focus group, survey, or long-term feature rollout plan during this time. And of course we encourage you to continue to think about future features as well—the web is in constant motion.

 

Testing

On some projects, it is a huge help to have a well-directed focus group evaluate the product prior to a full public launch.

 

The Launch

Ah, so bittersweet to watch them grow...

 

It’s Yours!

We hand it over to you after a thorough training session, giving you all the information you need to continue to build your web empire!

 

Analysis

We prep every website to help you fully understand who is visiting, and give you the tools you need to solicit feedback yourself.

Case Study: Sunrise Guide

The SunriseGuide brings together, in one place, a compilation of information and resources, coupled with valuable coupons, to support a healthy and sustainable lifestyle.

Key Features
  • Full layout and design
  • 100+ pages of content
  • 100+ pages of coupons
  • Production and quality control

Case Study: ILSR

Since 1974, ILSR has championed local self-reliance, a strategy that underscores the need for humanly scaled institutions and economies and the widest possible distribution of ownership.

Key Features
  • Unify the ILSR brand within all initiatives
  • Create a system to easily find articles within a collection of over 500
  • Custom post type for rules
  • Multiple taxonomy structures for better organization

Visit Site

Case Study: University
College

University College offers access to courses and programs from the seven universities at more than 40 locations and online. 

Key Features
  • Custom program post type to manage program specific content
  • Integrated forms to allow users to quickly contact UC for the programs they are interested in 
  • Utilized Wordpress Multi-Site to manage each of the site locations

Visit Site

Case Study: Hometowns
Partnerships

MaineHealth was awarded for the implementation of the HOMEtowns Partnership—a project developed by a coalition of community partners in the seven counties that make up Maine’sWestern and Midcoast Public Health Districts.

 

Key Features
  • Marketing plans generated for 7 counties
  • Full branding for each project
  • Design and producation management