Tag Archives: 2005

Pure Vacations – Websites, Brand Strategy and Indentity

Pure Kauai

Click to visit live site

Pure Vacations is a custom luxury spa vacation service that provides discriminating clients with same experience you would expect from a five-star resort but in a private luxury home. I have had the originally called Pure Kauai, they were one of my first, and favorite freelance clients that I worked with directly. They were referred to me in 2003 as they were struggling to find a means to transform their fitness vacation business into a luxury brand. They had already had a design firm re-do their logo, and knew their website was a crucial sales tool considering their geography. By carefully listening to what their business goals were, and working through the process with open minds on both sides, I was able to architect, design and build a website that suited their purpose.  Over the following year or so I would support them with email newsletter design and delivery as well as regular site updates.

In late 2004 they approached me again, not only to update their website, but also to work with them in developing their brand strategy and refreshing their identity.  Working with a copywriter, who is now my wife, we did a thorough breakdown of the fundamentals and intangibles of their business.  Once all involved had a complete understanding we created a new identity, all new copy, a brand hierarchy that could accommodate new franchises and a new website architecture and refreshed design.  The end result has been a doubling of revenues year over year.  Being a trusted luxury brand on one of the most beautiful developed islands in the world has brought them Hollywood stars and key real estate partnerships that have driven the business beyond the owner’s imagination.  The client could not be happier. Aloha.

In 2006, due to the volume of changes and adding of two more franchises, I referred Pure Vacations to old time collaborator Pinacol to migrate their site(s) to a cms/template powered system based on the original design.  The sites are now maintained by the client themselves.



Copywriting: Alyssa McCornock Reponen

Current Site System Backend: Pinacol

U.S.A.F. – WhatAmIGonnaDoNext.com

Main Navigation

Click to see an archived version of the site.

This site was GSD&M’s first foray into using the web for it’s annual direct response recruitment efforts for the Air Force.  The project was a collaborative effort between the team at Transistor Studios and the creative team at GSD&M.

We conceptualized and created a hand-wrought, lo-fi interface that presented a variety of thematic career choices for users.  For a very unassuming site, from a content standpoint, the complexity of the different paths was daunting. Traditional user experience architecture wasn’t really built for that kind of logic.  The users were invited to immerse themselves to explore their options, from the humorous to 21st century tech, they were able to discover on their own terms.  By integrating humor and clever interactivity, users could discover the variety of opportunities at the USAF without the feeling there were being pressured.

As a result of this open approach, the conversion rates were extremely high (over 4% at it’s peak) and the site was featured in the Communication Arts Interactive Annual 12 and won a FWA Site of the Day.



Art Direction: James Price (Transistor); Sean Keith (GSD&M)
Copywriting: Chris Staub (GSD&M)
Design: Chandler Owen
Flash Programming: Shant Parseghian
Sound Design: Keith Rugerrio
Animation: Alex Zakari

Tao – TaoLife.com

Main Page

Click to see archived version of site (sound might be a bit loud)

Agency: The Hauser Group
Client: Giant International
Project: Website for Tao Consumer Product launch



Site Design: Peter Reid
Flash Development/Animation: Even DeHaven
Sound Design: Somatone
Motion Graphics Video: Justin Harder

MTV Hits – My Hit List Month


Click to see an archived version of the site.

Client: MTV Hits
Project: Part of a broadcast campaign to solicit video hit lists from the viewing audience.



Art Direction: James Price
Design/HTML /Database Development: Pinacol

Symantec – Various Ad Campaigns and Product Presentation

Presentation Example 2

Agency: JWT and Pincaol
Client: Symantec Software
Project: From 2002-2005 delivered Art Direction, Design and Flash Animation for international interactive advertising campaigns.  The creative performed well above average in multiple languages and directly mirrored everything the Agency was doing with traditional media.  These screens are selects from a press presentation we did when Symantec launched it’s “Resilient Infrastructure” enterprise security service.  These selections represent a common theme in the work we did for them with strong yet simple type and iconic imagery that told complex technological stories in a easy to understand way.


Bodega – BodegaWinebar.com

Bodega Santa Monica

Click to visit live site

Client: Bodega Winebar

Project: Architecture, Art Direction, Flash Development and HTML, as well as menus, business cards and other print extras.

Quickly approaching the launch of their Santa Monica location the owners of Bodega Wine Bar, former Chiat Day employees, came to me to help them develop their web presence.  Being a multi-year winner of Citysearch’s Wine Bar of the Year, their website had become a top priority.

After multiple discussions with the client and long-time collaborator Peter Reid, I created a strategy and user experience architecture that would work best for the goals we had laid out.  Then we delivered a selection of design directions that were inspired by their laid back way of serving wine and food.   The client was so pleased with the results they not only wanted us to develop the site but to create their menus and related print collateral based on that chosen direction.

I’m a huge fan of simplicity and design that effectively communicates the unspoken qualities of the client.  This little project does just that.



Design Direction: Peter Reid

Discovery Channel – Alien Planet

Agency: Crew Creative/Pinacol
Client: Discovery Channel
Project: Art Direction, Design, and animation for promotion Alien Planet special

Pinacol worked with Crew Creative to develop a tease campaign for Alien Planet. The show about earthlings finding aliens first aired at 8pm on the Discovery Channel Saturday May 14th with twice the usual audience for that time slot. Over a two week period our banners generated the highest levels of online traffic for Discovery.com that they have ever recorded!

Gallery of Alternates