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Dialogues with the Masters

We’re delighted to announce the launch of Dialogues with the Masters, a project we’ve been secretly working on for over a month now. The site features Janet Attwood, co-author of New York Times Bestseller The Passion Test and her journeys throughout India learning from the great masters of our time.

Janet interviewed over 100 masters and compiled their wisdom into a DVD and CD set, as well as the newly created Daily Dose of Enlightenment program, in which subscribers can receive a video every day for a year.

This site was a milestone in my web design career, both in the extent of my abilities and the exposure this site will be receiving. It will also be the last “Design” I post on this website. Very soon my Design services will be moved elsewhere, and The Astrarium will be transforming into a true online magazine, featuring…YOU?

Apologies for the delays along this process and with the October Forecast. Hang in there!

Flow with Oren Harris

We created this WordPress based site for Oren Harris, the Flow Coach. The site will feature two blogs, an e-store, several information pages, and pretty soon social-networking capabilities using Buddypress. Oren’s services range from inspirational speaking to flow coaching to working with Energy Sensitive Beings (ESB’s). Check out his site for more info!

Oren Harris

Blue Star of Hope

We’re delighted to announce that we’ve launched the new website for Blue Star of Hope, our favorite non-profit who brought us the Power of One program! This WordPress site features an image slideshow, a blog, some very complex forms, photo galleries, and several information pages.

Visit Site

Don’t miss Blue Star’s Power of One program, which unites international students in Thailand for a life-transforming service learning opportunity! We’ll soon be launching a trailer for the feature documentary we filmed about this program in 2008.

Visions of Brahma

We created Visions of Brahma as a portfolio and design service website in 2009. The name came from the visionary nature of our work and our resonance with the Hindu Creator deity Brahma, who represents students, artists, the youthful and those that create. For a time it was a good representation of our work online, and we often developed the site to make it better.

This post is a tribute to the website we used for over a year before discovering our true brand in The Astrarium, and an overview of some of the interesting designs we came up with along the way.

As many designers know, the most difficult projects are the ones for yourself. Finding the right business name, brand, and image is very important, and it took us quite some time to find The Astrarium, which is just the right name to describe what we do. Before the Astrarium, there was Visions of Brahma and A Quiet Forest. See our post about A Quiet Forest’s Lifecycle to see some of our older websites.

Here are the various incarnations of Visions of Brahma durings its heyday, leading up to the creation of the Astrarium in April 2010.

Copyright Michael McCracken

This was one of the first layouts, mostly focused on web design services but also featuring artwork in the form of products. This layout, while still quite nice, was a bit too expansive. We set out to create something more grounded and contained.

Copyright Michael McCracken

This version, still largely focused on web design services, used a new background image that found its way into many incarnations of this site. It still needed some improvement though.

Copyright Michael McCracken

At this point in the process, we crafted the new categories browsing method we use now on this web site. At the time we had five categories, and a layout somewhat similar to my site today.

Copyright Michael McCracken

A home page design we created with a new and more vibrant version of the background image, to make the site pop more.

Copyright Michael McCracken

Final version of the home page design with new background and categories browsing, and the last one to be used before we developed the concept for The Astrarium.

If you’re thinking about hiring us for your own web site, and this article turned you off, don’t worry. We don’t usually work like this. Many of our clients say the layout we come up with is spot on the first time, and the revisions are up to you from there on out. It’s just that it’s very difficult to create a personal web site at times, and we also struggled with how to organize the site, as we were creating something totally new. This was a process that evolved over several weeks into the site you see today. We were guided in just the right ways to make each change in layout and organization, and it turned out beautifully.

Yoga DJ HyFi

We created this WordPress site for Ian Hyman who will use the site to promote and expand his Yoga DJ business. Ian will be touring the country performing at dozens of yoga studios this year. Check out his site for upcoming dates and locations!

Visit Website

The site features a blog, a listing of tour dates, a cool liquid design and some photos.

Tricia Galligan

Tricia Galligan is an intuitive counselor and healer based in PA. She contacted us to create a website to promote her new business.

The site features a blog, information pages about Tricia’s services, two contact forms, and a variety of stock photos adorning each page.

Copyright Michael McCracken

Candlewood Retreat

Rennie and Andrea of Candlewood Retreat in Clarkdale AZ had us create this website layout in conjunction with Gabe Krechmer of Krechmer.com. It was a pleasure to work with these three, and to support a retreat that is completely off the grid! Check out their site to plan your stay in Candlewood.

Copyright Michael McCracken

The site features a bold image slideshow, a blog of upcoming events, several information pages about the services and amenities of the Retreat, a large photo gallery and a contact form.

Copyright Michael McCracken

We provided color correction and enhancement, and set up this and other photo galleries on the site. Candlewood truly is a warm and inviting space!

Full Power Growth

We created this WordPress web site for Vanessa Simpkins of Full Power Growth. Vanessa is a Life Coach and Marketing Expert who helps individuals access their full potential using the Law of Attraction. She wanted a website to expand and promote her business using social media, blogging, and the many marketing tricks up her sleeve.

The site features a blog, video galleries, some information pages, and many social media features.

Copyright Michael McCracken