Part way through my second year at University I was given the opportunity to pitch some ideas for the opportunity to redesign Shoot Magazine’s website. Whilst Football isn’t my favourite sport in the world I was thrilled at the opportunity to work with such a well known brand, and to work with a topic I am not familiar with.
I was successful with my pitch and I was given the job of redesigning the Shoot Magazine website. Woah.
After pitching I worked out a quote and the estimated time for the project. I underquoted the time as I am a student and this would be my first big client. But I was out by a country mile plus football field. I think this was okay as this was the first time I quoted for a project as a free lancer. However, I was aware that people make these mistakes so I should have done more to prevent it.
I will take the quoting mistake as a learning experience. I now know to take into account the other work I have to complete simultaneously!
The new website had to fulfil a number of requirements from Shoot:
- Allow easier discovery of content
- The website must make good use of images
- Make the design of the website modern
- Allow a form of integration with Youtube videos
- Make it easy to update the website with recent league results
The above are only a few of the key features of the website. A lot of the areas relating to the content on the website pointed to the use of a Content Management System. The goto CMS for me was WordPress, this was because I was comfortable using it and because of its great blogging features it made a perfect match to the websites requirements.
Another section of the site that I particularly enjoyed working on is the teams section at the bottom of league pages. This section integrates with the categories in WordPress to provide two recent news articles about the team in question. Shoot have the option to add teams or move teams between leagues when a new Football season begins.
Since releasing the Shoot redesign into the wild I have been able to sit down and tackle a number of these problems one by one. There is one issue that I do need to resolve on the Shoot Magazine and that is to make each of the plugins a widget. At the moment each plugin is hardcoded into the theme, which is a big NO NO, but bad things happen when you are under pressure to reach deadlines.
A key skill I have developed throughout my time working on the Shoot Magazine website redesign has been developing relationships with clients. Throughout the project I communicated directly with one of Shoot’s editors, Dan Tyler and he was excellent at communicating what he wanted with the website, which isn’t always what you get from a client. I have also met with a number of different members at Pedigree, who own Shoot, and I really enjoyed my time working with them.
Thanks to my work with Pedigree I have been given the opportunity to work on a number of other cool projects with the staff at Pedigree and I can’t wait to have them finished and ready to show off to the world.
Checkout my work on Shoot Magazine here: