Web agency insight

Meet our Creative Director, Ian Long

Our Creative Director, Ian Long, overviews the value a creative director brings to web design projects.

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What is a creative director, and what do they do?

A creative director makes strategic creative decisions, overseeing the creative process from project inception to completion. As creative director at Feel Created,  I'm responsible for setting the creative vision of the brands we work with. Sometimes that's a full rebrand, and sometimes clients already have brand guidelines. Either way, my job is to ensure the website truly reflects a brand's vision and values in a visual sense. 

I’m also the founder of the business, which gives me a broad insight into what it takes to launch a successful brand––it also means you’ll find me doing everything from creative strategy to administration. We work with businesses of all sizes, but running my own business helps me to appreciate the challenges that SMEs come up against.

How important is the design phase in a web build?

Setting the brand style and tone before moving on to the build is critical because changes made during the build are more time-consuming and costly. We build our sites in WordPress using the Gutenberg feature. Gutenberg is a 'block' (modular or elemental) editor that allows website managers to create pages from pre-branded blocks. We'll lay out a series of pages using custom-designed blocks when setting the creative direction. We don't create the homepage at this point, but rather the overall look.

Some websites are very image heavy, but some, such as our recent Prosper project, have none. Creative direction is essential to creating a good user experience regardless of the graphics or animations. We use persona and scenario development methods to feed into this process, building an overall journey that combines insight with visual impact. 

Are websites your main specialism?

We're a team of experts with varying specialisms. So, while our agency focuses on digital and providing an enhanced online presence for our clients, we often diversify into other projects. For example, I've provided creative direction for a 360-degree immersive experience, social media campaigns, brand guidelines, and print materials such as leaflets, banners, and brochures. Understanding the digital and print landscapes, I'm clear on the need to build a cohesive story across all marketing materials. Where we can't deliver a specific project need, we work with trusted partners (videographers, photographers, etc.) to offer a complete service.

What can clients expect from the creative process?

When clients come on board, we begin an initial discovery phase. We collect all relevant info within this stage to help inform the project. I'll begin the creative process with this information, starting with the overall look and feel. Back-and-forth discussions within the project's design phase allow us to agree on a final design fed into the development process. My direction helps clients stay on brand when making additions and updates to the final site. But, the beauty of the Gutenberg block editing feature is the level of autonomy it offers over creating pages. Website administrators/content editors can run the design under the guidance of the overall creative direction.

Contact Ian about your latest project.

View Ian’s previous projects here.

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