Retro Fitness Homepage

Daniel Tuttle
By Daniel Tuttle Owner Bottle Imp, photographer and chicken keeper. @DanielCTuttle

Because the Retro Fitness homepage was not something I conceived and designed from scratch, I am hesitant to include it in my portfolio. At this point, the design is 90% my concept, but there were severe structural and time restrictions I had to adhere to to prevent it from being a representative creative work.

I was not able to build this site from scratch. My firm had someone else build an entire static design from scratch. As can be observed from the screenshot above, the Retro Fitness CEO was selected to be on the CBS show Undercover Boss. Just prior to Undercover Boss airing, the client informed my firm that they did not like the design that was put together, that it was too dark. This assessment was not unreasonable, it was a dark design. I had no role in the site until this point, where I was tasked to quickly lighten it up and make it feel “open”. I had to do something super fast, i.e., within hours not weeks.

I took 15-30 minutes and changed the basic backgrounds to a semi-opaque white and threw up full screen background images, while trimming a bunch of block elements from the original design to strip it down to something slightly more minimalist. I submitted the concept for approval and it was accepted.

The second part of the process was converting the site to be responsive. I swapped out the existing static 960 20 column grid that was used before, and replaced it with Bootstrap. This still did not afford me time to redesign from scratch as replacing the entire wireframe from a 20 column grid to a 12 column grid took some engineering which also took time. Should the opportunity present itself to do a fresh redesign, it will be easier to do so using the new wireframe.

95% of the coding was done by someone else, I was just happy to be able to make a quick change to satisfy customer demands. It is all built in a private, proprietary CMS that I am only 25% familiar with so it was an interesting educational experience.

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