MAjor Designs - Year in Review (2014)So in January of 2014 I decided to tackle the dream of starting my own web design/development business.  After weighing out all the pros and cons I pulled the trigger, brought a re-seller hosting package, created a name (thanks to my wife) and MAjor Designs was up and running.  My first year running the business was great.  I was not overload with work but had just enough to keep me busy and move the business forward.  Here are some of the projects I did up in 2014.

JoniBlyDesign.com – This is the official website of graphic designer Joni Blymire based in Gettysburg, PA.  She was my first hosting client.  When she learned I was setting up shop she immediately wanted to move her website and email over to my new hosting setup.  I helped her transfer her website and email from her previous host over to the MAjor Designs’ server.  Joni and I have worked on a variety of other projects both before and during 2014 and will probably work on many more projects in the future.

NOMAOffice.com – The New Oxford Municipal Authority in New Oxford, PA was my first web development job when I started MAjor Designs.  The website’s design was created by Joni Blymire.  Once NOMA Office approved the design, Joni sent me a PDF of the design.  I used that to create a custom WordPress theme for NOMA and created some custom post-types so NOMA staff could add Meeting Minutes, Newsletters, Annual Water Reports and have a way to maintain their staff directory online.  Once it was all developed I created a document so they can update the site themselves and launched it on the new MAjor Designs’ server.

NYSSA-PGA.org – Throughout the year I worked with Joni Blymire to create HTML e-mails for the The New York State Society of Anesthesiologists.  Joni designs the emails and once approved, she sends it over to me to create an email ready HTML file.  I send a test to NYSSA to get approved and once approved, I sent them the .html file which they send through their mass mailing program of choice.  You can see some examples I have done here, here and here.  In 2014 I created a total of 17 HTML emails for NYSSA.

LetsPretend123.com – This project came to me through Matt Haas.  Matt put up a craigslist ad seeking help for a different project.  While that project was starting out, Let’s Pretend contacted Matt about redesigning their site.  They were originally on Joomla! but wanted something more under friendly to update.  Matt and I upgraded them to WordPress and I slapped on the Avada Theme.  Let’s Pretend said they wanted something with “Lots of color and really POPPED”.  They were happy with the end result.

Gallon.com – I have worked with Anne and Dale Gallon for years at Wide Open Communications.  She was quite bummed when I left to seek a new employment opportunity.  However when she heard I started up MAjor Designs, she was ecstatic.  Another company re-designed and re-developed her website on the Magento platform.  Anne hired me to re-do ALL of the framed and unframed graphics for the site.  This came out to over 900 newly created images.  Once Junction Creative Solutions finished the site, we moved it over to my hosting servers, applied a dedicated IP and SSL certificate and the updated Gallon.com was up and running.

TheLongWayPodcast.com – This was my first podcast website I had ever created.  Friends Josh Tauzin and Jeremy Mentzell were looking for a way to setup their podcast.  I oversaw their conversation on Facebook and made a deal with them.  Deal was I’d create, setup and host the site for free if they’d advertise my business on their podcast.  They agreed and I had the site up in a few weeks.  The site is setup on the WordPress platform with a custom theme created by me using Bootstrap as the framework.  I implemented the Blubrry Podcast WordPress plug-in to handle the podcast aspect of the site.  Finally showed Josh and Jeremy how to add new episodes and they launched in July of 2014.  In those few months they posted 13 episodes.

e-RatePA.org – This was the original project that Matt Haas and I were supposed to work on.  After some delays here and there, it finally was completed.  SilverPennyStudios.com did up the design and I implemented their design into a WordPress site.  Matt handled moving the site from the dev environment to the live environment.

BakedInDewey.com – Matt Haas contacted me once again for a very small project.  The owner of Baked Coffee Bar in Delaware wanted a new home page for their Bigcommerce website.  I whipped up a few mock-ups and once one was picked, I applied the HTML and CSS on the home page template and it was a wrap.  The project was done within a weekend.

WACBellaire.com – This was the last website I launched in 2014.  I worked with Taylor Lee on the project.  Taylor did the design and I turn his design into a custom, responsive WordPress theme.  I created some custom post-types so the staff as WAC could update the website themselves.  I provided some documentation on how to maintain the site and it was up and running in no time.

CarbaughFormless.com – This was another client I worked with while at Wide Open Communications.  They have another website called CarbaughConcrete.com (which I designed and developed).  They are opening a new business and needed some illustration work done.  They provided some photos of the equipment they wanted converted into line drawings.  I used Adobe Illustrator to create the graphics and provided them the original files.  They plan to launch their new website in 2015.

To wrap it all up, I developed/re-launched three websites for a client which I can’t talk about due to a non-disclosure agreement.  I also worked with this client on a few minor projects as well.

So it was a productive first year for MAjor Designs.  Launched several websites, setup a PO Box, setup web hosting servers and made some great business connections.  Hoping to hear from everyone in 2015!  Have a great year!