Tamaki Law

UX, Art Direction, Visual Design, Web Development March 2012 Visit Site

Spearheading a complete website revamp for Tamaki Law, a law firm responsible for some of the biggest settlements on record in Washington State and across the United States

For over a decade Tamaki Law has been recovering record-breaking figures for their clients in Washington State and beyond. Their cases have made headlines on major media outlets like CNN and Good Morning America. At a time of burgeoning national attention for their success I was tapped by Tamaki to update their web presence. From concept to launch I put my diverse creative and technical toolbox to work to deliver a completely revamped desktop website that was more visual, easy to navigate, easy to update and that aimed to provide an accurate reflection of their brand and quality of service.

Our process began by first identifying the stakeholder goals to be met and problems to be solved. This included defining the brand message and target audience. Also compiled were links to competitor websites and links to sites that the stakeholder’s really liked. One of the primary challenges that emerged from this phase was the task to convey the law firm’s strength and ability to take on big insurance companies and government while at the same time appealing primarily to a small-town Central Washington demographic that values approachability, friendship and spending time in the outdoors.

Having defined the stakeholder's vision, I first set out to make a site that is usable. Having made an inventory of all current and future pages and content that would exist on the new site, I organized all of the content under a manageable number of familiar subheads. The resulting navigation scheme was reviewed and approved by the firm.

From there it was sketching time. On my sketch pad I like to write down usability requirements and navigation lists next to the places where I sketch images of the design I’m imagining as the solution.

Sketches

Having settled on a sketched solution, I proceeded to create a low-fidelity digital wireframe. This served as a reference point for discussion with stakeholders about how the site would function. Here I made iterative refinements to the design based on the stakeholder’s feedback and testing results.

Wireframes Image

This process was again repeated upon completion of high-fidelity wireframe comps. I also completed my own survey to test reaction to the design using online resources. Refinements were made until everyone seemed satisfied.

Finally I proceeded to development, translating the site to HTML/CSS and configuring the open-source CMS, Wordpress, to meet site requirements. Dynamic interactions were powered by custom code I created using Javascript, jQuery, and a little PHP.

The firm was happily responsible for populating the site with all the content, a task made easy my Wordpress’ intuitive backend interface and custom inputs created to handle custom content types.

Navigation Shot

There were a number of noteworthy results from this process. One of them was a simple navigation system that was largely flat – only two levels deep. Potential third level content was placed under a single page and organized into an accordion UI scheme that kept such pages uncluttered. Another was a visual design that prominently featured images. The design sought to tell the story of Tamaki Law’s formidable legal skill with the use of large bold fonts, sharp angled corners and large UI elements while speaking to the firm’s homegrown sensibilities with an earth-tones color scheme augmented with images of Central Washington’s proud landscape.