Archive for the ‘Multimedia’ Category

The Advantages of Managed WordPress Hosting

October 12, 2015 | buchanandesign


In the past few years, our studio has been working on an increasing number of WordPress sites. WordPress is a versatile Content Management System (CMS) with abundantly available plug-ins to add just about any functionality needed on a given website.

Typically, client specific budget and needs help determine which hosting solution is used for each WordPress site. However, due to instances of website attacks, compromised plug-ins, template update issues, and slow load speed, we have started to promote Managed WordPress Hosting solutions to our clients.

Managed WordPress Hosting is a hosting solution that is specifically designed for hosting WordPress sites. Unlike typical shared, VPS, or dedicated hosting, Managed WordPress Hosting providers such as WPEngine or Flywheel are WordPress specialists. This means that they not only gear the hosting to best serve WordPress, they also offer excellent WordPress support. Here are some key advantages to using Managed WordPress Hosting:

Because they are WordPress specialists, Managed WordPress Hosts are usually aware of the latest WordPress vulnerabilities. They will actively update the WordPress core files to better protect your site. Some actually ban the use of plug-ins known to compromise WordPress security – helping to secure both your site and the server your site sits on.

Managed WordPress Hosting servers are optimized for WordPress sites. They will often incorporate cache systems specifically designed to make WordPress load many times faster than on a regular hosting account.

Most Managed WordPress Hosts offer daily back-ups. Between the content, template files, and many plug-ins forming a WordPress site, there are a lot of moving parts. If a flaw, security hole, or new update to any of these moving parts causes your site to go haywire, it’s a great relief to be able to revert your site back a day before any issues occurred with your site.

Although typical hosts will allow you to host a WordPress site, not all will be able to give you support on issues specifically related to WordPress. Managed WordPress Hosts are staffed with individuals that are highly knowledgeable about the idiosyncracies involved with a WordPress site. This makes troubleshooting any issues with your WordPress site much faster.

Managed WordPress Hosting typically starts in the $30/month range – compared to $10/month for budget shared hosting. However, if your site is to get hacked on a basic server, the costs to clean up that hack could easily close the the gap on the pricing difference. Depending on your budget and needs of your WordPress site, Managed WordPress Hosting is definitely and option worth looking into.

Multimedia, Website

Know Your Curves: App Design

February 6, 2015 | buchanandesign

This week we helped Imaging Healthcare Specialists launch their new Know Your Curves App. This App helps raise awareness about breast cancer and makes it easy for women to perform self-exams and schedule mammograms – the key to early breast cancer detection. This launch is a culmination of months of discussion, planning and thoughtful app design. As the App Designer, we worked directly with Imaging Healthcare Specialists to develop a very useful tool for millions of women and help save lives along the way. We strongly recommend that every woman over 40 download this app, it’s FREE through iTunes.

Case Studies, Mobile Design, Multimedia, Projects

The New IHS Website

April 4, 2012 | admin

Today marked the soft launch of the new Imaging Healthcare Specialists (IHS) website.

We have been working with IHS since it was first created with the merge of RMG and Open MRI Centers. Through our creative design efforts we helped develop the Imaging Healthcare Specialists brand and guided it through the transition of two previous companies merging to stand alone on its own.

Reflective of their needs at the time, we designed their original site as a “brochure” site – a site composed of mainly static information and links. At the time our role was strictly initial design – we mainly worked to give the site an IHS branded look – and the site was handed over to a IHS-selected programmer to manage. However, over time the needs of the site grew – it was passed to a couple different programmers and more and more functionality was added. Unfortunately, as the new features were added and the scope of the site grew, the design of the site began to suffer – it became a patchwork of new and old pages and lacked a cohesive design logic in the newly added details. We were called back in on the project to manage the site and apply design “band-aids”, but it was becoming painfully apparent that the new site needs had outgrown its original design.

After many conversations with the various department heads at IHS, we were given the go ahead to develop a new site. We were tasked with developing a new site that not only incorporated newly needed functionality, but was also user friendly, easily updatable and expandable. We compared programmer and content management platform options according to costs and ultimately the needs of IHS. Unlike with the first site, we were given the role of both designer and coordinator. Because of this, we were better able to take direct feedback from IHS and incorporate it in our design and make sure it was properly addressed in the programming.

The resulting site is simple, easy to navigate, dynamic and can be easily updated. You can view the results at


Multimedia, Projects, Website

WOW! Without Flash

March 1, 2012 | admin

Buchanan Design was recently sought-out by Scripps Health to design an animated microsite and animated e-blast to promote their upcoming Legacy Celebration. Scripps came to us with a design they created for a printed ‘save the date’ and a music sample that they wanted to use in the animation. They said they wanted to “WOW” their guests.

In the past, we have created event micro-sites with elaborate animation. Our primary vehicle to create these animated experiences was using Flash. Recently however, due to the popularity of non-Flash devices such as the iPhone and iPad, we have had to find work-arounds to creating an animated experience without the use of Flash.

Because Scripps Health wanted the animation to be coordinated with music, the obvious solution for incorporating animation on the site was to use video. We brought their static image to life with animated textures, custom graphics, messaging, and music to create a short video for the landing page of the event microsite. You can see the results below.

Creating an animation for the e-blast was a bit more challenging. Although most internet browsers are constantly getting updated with the latest technology and coding practices, most email  clients are way behind the times. Because of this, embedded video and audio is not an option for e-blasts. We opted to go with an animated GIF. Animated GIFs are a fairly old technology that worked really well for smaller animations, but took up way to much memory for anything that had any substance – you may remember the obnoxious small looping animations of the internet in the 90s. However, because both personal computers and internet speeds have gotten so much faster, the large file size of GIF animations is less of an issue. Although they do not support audio, GIFs are just about universally supported everywhere. You can see a shrunk-down version of the GIF animation below – keep in mind it was a header of a larger email.

Scripps was happy with the results. We managed to deliver the “WOW” with out the use of Flash.


Case Studies, Multimedia, Projects

Savvy Sue & Premium Paul

November 15, 2011 | admin

The video we just completed for TRU Phone made it’s debut today in front of thousands and is receiving kudos in various twitter and blog posts.

TRU is based in London with an office in North Carolina, so in addition to the tight timeline, we worked around the 3 and 8 hour time difference.

We partnered with Comunicano on the project and the concept started with a simple conversation describing the difference between a TRU traveler and a competitor service traveler. The writing team developed the script and once that was approved we put everything in motion. Voice-over talent in LA, models in the Detour studio, and Joey revving up the new computer engines. It was a fun process with little time to second guess, check it out! b

Case Studies, Multimedia