The stories behind the sites we build...

We are proud to present the designs and stories behind some of the website we've designed for our clients ...

Mar '10 Case Study: Website Design for Tigerhill Studio

The Story Behind the Site


Great photography can be truly breathtaking! Especially if the view is unusual—like from up in the clouds looking down over the city lights of Chicago.
But how to make it work on the Web? There were a few problems, or, shall we say, challenges?

The challenges ...

  • Our client, Tigerhill Studio, has been taking aerial and architectural photos for over 30 years! How can we showcase the depth and breath of their 10,000+ images without being overwhelming?
  • And, can we use the images to gain regular, recurring "face time" so that customers will think of Tigerhill when they need custom aerial and architectural shots?
  • And, can we create a buzz on Facebook, Twitter, and other social networking sites to extend our reach to the people who are most likely to buy?
  • And, can we increase sales of commercial real estate photos during a time when sales have been almost non-existent?

Our approach ...

First, let's be realistic, Tigerhill's photos look much better large. They are shot with incredible cameras, image stabilizers, and at amazingly high resolutions. So, the details are there where you zoom in.
Dare we build a website large enough to really show them off? If so, can we make the photos load quickly?
We did a little research into the client base and found that many of them access the Web from notebook or laptop computers, which typically have high resolution screens. So, a larger website page that would fill up their screen was actually a great idea.
Next, we checked into their connection speeds. Most had dedicated connections or high speed cable. With image compression features available today, we could build a large page, with big images that loaded quickly, as long as we loaded one image at a time.
But how would viewers navigate through these images? Solution: build a series of thematic slide shows, each with thumbnail previews of the images inside. And do it in Flash with VCR-type controls for automatic image advance, easy maintenance, great compression, and overall accessibility through the free Flash Plugins.

The results ...

Customers tell us they like the site so much they've make it their home page—they just LOVE looking at the pictures.
Actually, we can't really blame them, we do, too!
In fact, we are about to start offering Windows Wallpapers, so you will soon be able to see a slide show of your favorite images, right on your computer's desktop.
It's just one more way we can keep John Hill out there in front of his clients!