The city is building a new LRT bridge across the river just south of my office. An astonishing collection of people and equipment and cranes are part of an effort that’s bound to go on for some time. What interests me most is thinking about the number of words that have gone into the project so far. Every big undertaking starts and ends with words. Before you dig the tunnel that leads to the bridge that crosses the river, you have to put the plan in writing.
We’ve been working on our own project at Visible Ink this fall. So, dear reader, it’s time for me to introduce you to my crew.
Dig the tunnel
For the past few months, I have been tunnelling through my own word project. It started innocently enough. My great friend and graphic designer, James Shrimpton, summoned up the courage to suggest that it’s time for a fresh visual identity for Visible Ink. The old cards were simply old.
Seems easy enough, doesn’t it? James found a font with a persuasive swish. The talented Lu Mascaro at Uppercase Press dusted off her old-school letterpress and sent my new cards. The paper is fine and the ink is intensely good. The new card demanded that I offer a way for my clients to find me. A website.
And that’s where the project meets the tunnel. The long-neglected website. Copy must be written. A design conceived. A site built.
Build the bridge
Several drafts later, it was time for feedback. Pigeons were sent in all directions and soon returned with the gentlest and wisest of edits from Anita Jenkins, Barb McCord, Anna Williams, Rita Dirks, and Jean Olynyk. Yes, it takes at least five editors to keep some writers in line. Fortunately, my graphic designer had given me a clean look with lots of white space. The writer met the designer just about halfway. We even found a place for the cartoon Gerry Rasmussen created for me years ago when computers were young and telephones had cords. The banner image on the Contact page celebrates “The Joys of Freelancing.”
The writing tunnel was done (it’s never done…). And the hard part was just getting started. This is a classic little red hen moment: Who will help build the site? My days of tinkering with HTML are long gone. New crew arrived just in time. Jesse Tessman walked me through a dozen decisions and, almost as if by magic, built a fine new bridge.
Cross the river
There’s little point to a bridge that doesn’t go anywhere. It’s time to cross the river. This is my opening day blog post. I am pleased to introduce you to an amazing group of talented people who helped me build a new website for Visible Ink. Thank you, each one of you, for being such a great crew.