Web Portfolio

Cloudwise – Apr-Dec 2000

Using Dreamweaver, Access, Photoshop, Fireworks and a proprietary leased template manager written in Java, I created several websites, including the company portal, which was originally done in the template system:

Cloudwise, when I took over design. in approximately March 2000
Cloudwise, when I took over design in approximately March 2000.

I updated it a little using Dreamweaver, etc. to avoid the somewhat dated look of the rounded tab, to a more Yahoo appearance. In 2000 this was a big step.

Cloudwise, as I complied with requirements to emulate Yahoo, Fall 2000
Cloudwise, as I complied with requirements to emulate Yahoo, Fall 2000

Utah Grizzlies Hockey Team – Spring 2001

While at Cloudwise I had worked on the sketches for the Utah Grizzlies website, and when Cloudwise closed the Utah office in December 2000, I took over the completion of the website project under my own label, Imbizweb.com (note in lower right corner, logo). For this project I used Access, Dreamweaver, Photoshop, Fireworks, and Illustrator to convert the EPS logos received from the printers. I wrote a custom web interface for the client to update the “Scoreboard” in the upper right corner live from games.

Utah Grizzlies Hockey Team Website built from scratch
Utah Grizzlies Hockey Team Website built from scratch

iEnhance.com – Dec 2000 to May 2002

iEnhance began as surgery.com and evolved into plasticsurgery.com and ienhance.com rather quickly. I was hired primarily as a database admin for SQL-Server, based on my experiences in using Access on an IIS Server. I was sent to obtain the full specs of our database and back end programming in ASP from our outsourced team in California, and we took the project in-house. At that time our VC pulled funding and we reduced our staff drastically, putting me in charge of our IIS and Exchange Servers, in addition to my duties on the SQL-Server.

Surgery.com before rebranding as iEnhance.com in 2000 just prior to my hire
Surgery.com before rebranding as iEnhance.com in 2000 just prior to my hire

My experience in design was put to use as I took charge of our content creation and photo optimization staff while using Fireworks and Dreamweaver to redesign the site as it evolved into iEnhance.com

iEnhance.com in early 2001, first version off the drawing board
iEnhance.com in early 2001, first version off the drawing board – note that the text right of the image changes in response to mousing over the left “buttons”

Over the next few months working primarily alone in design, I tidied up the site considerably while adhering to budget and time constraints from having to subsist off of sales, rather than VC money. I also had duties on the back end, since there were initially few automated activities associated with client support.

Last version available prior to my leaving in May 2002, a cleaner page by far
Last version available prior to my leaving in May 2002, a cleaner page by far

The challenge in rebranding to iEnhance was also to create new exciting functionality, such as a zip code area search, which was more intense to program then than it is now. With optimized and normalized stored procedures our searches were among the fastest in the industry.

Our photo gallery search page, with database functionality to narrow the search criterion
Our photo gallery search page, with database functionality to narrow the search criterion

Referral Experts, LLC – May 2002 to Dec 2013

An opportunity to become affiliated independently with the primary sponsor of iEnhance became available in early 2002 and to prevent any possible violation of NDA/NCA a group of us separated from iEnhance and formed Referral Experts, LLC. Our mission was to provide targeted online marketing to plastic and cosmetic surgeons. We had a staff of four owners. A sales specialist, a marketing specialist, a photo optimization specialist and myself, who took care of much of the content creation, design, programming, server admin and you name it.

Looking Your Best - first version for Inamed
Looking Your Best – first version for Inamed

At this time Inamed gave us EPS print artwork that we converted in Illustrator and then used Fireworks to create the HTML table cells. We used Dreamweaver to clean up the HTML produced by Fireworks and then a text editor to clean up those files. It was a longer process but overall produced an excellent product and was worth the extra time spent.

Our company started out with severely limited resources so we relied more on Open Source software, especially in our servers. This caused us to switch to a LAMP stack. I’d had previous experience working with PHP and MySQL in the 90’s so it was a quick transition.

Looking Your Best updated for an annual convention
Looking Your Best updated for an annual convention

Our sponsor gave us more EPS artwork and we were charged with updating the site for an annual plastic surgery convention. By this time I’d evolved into less overall whole-page slice and dice in Fireworks and instead used it to create each individual table cell and used CSS and HTML for many of the art effects. Our site had become much more modular and called different content areas from a MySQL Database. It was the beginning of a home-brewed framework system. The color scheme in this design was based on an advertising content creation web app we created for their clients to market their practices using Inamed artwork. This enhanced the branding of the product and association with the doctors, the print ads, and the website.

Final Inamed sponsored version of the site
Final Inamed sponsored version of the site

Our sponsor was purchased by another company that wanted to take the demographic up a few notches in income level, requiring a more upscale appearance. We were given artwork by EPS and JPG this time, so were able to slice and dice using a combination of Illustrator, Fireworks, and Photoshop. By this version I had a team of programmers, a team of content writers, and a team of artists, all working to create a valuable product on time. I was able to oversee the project and direct the flow while creating a custom CMS interface with programming to pull the appropriate content into the container cells on the pages. With a skilled Illustrator employee readily at hand, my primary hands-on design function for this version was with Photoshop fine tuning the images after being output from Illustrator, or cleaning up artifacts from resampling. I was also using a text editor on the server for most of my coding, and writing HTML, PHP, MySQL, Javascript and CSS by hand.

Looking Your Best with a new face
Looking Your Best with a new face

At this time our number of individual clients had grown to several hundred. In the early days of our company I had done much of the design for each of them, and then as we hired more and more skilled employees I grew into a management and oversight role and had very little hands-on with the hundreds of websites we had to create. By now I normally did only specialized Photoshop work such as merging and masking photos.

On the back end I had created a series of PHP OOP Classes that managed most of the site automatically, enabling us to reduce some of our staff of programmers in favor of our designers.

The screenshot above shows a step along the way to the new version of the site, meant to differentiate ourselves from our competitors, and a first response to Google Panda. Each block of the page is a database and scripting function and completely modular. This led to our creation of the next phase of this evolution, the website as seen today (Dec 2014).

Looking Your Best today
Looking Your Best today

Our current design, which is the one from when I left the partnership in 2013, is a combination of Jquery/Ajax on the front, and PHP/MySQL in a custom framework in the back. For this edition I was almost exclusively in a management position, and assisted the programmers both front and back, while working out the details of the CSS with the designers to prevent any interference with the Javascript.

Dec 2013 to present:

I’ve been in a holding pattern paying my due diligence to the separation from my partnership, and have been working primarily on my own projects for my social properties, family businesses, and book publishing. I’ve used Photoshop Elements almost daily, and still write HTML and PHP on the back end in the BASH shell on occasion.

I would readily embrace the opportunity to return to a lively work environment in which I could best utilize my hard earned skills in creation, oversight, and the management of time, processes, and people.

RESUME: Charles-Miske-Resume-and-Cover

All work and no play, right?
All work and no play, right?

Note that most of these images were obtained as screenshots from Wayback, and are missing various cached buttons, logos, etc. Database and script functions won’t work in these older cached versions either.