While the majority of our time is focused on our clients – we do get some time to help lead the web design community. For the past eight years, we’ve been running ConvergeSE, a large scale web design and development conference, out of Columbia, SC.
We have to stay ahead of our awesome attendees, so we not only find speakers that will teach and inspire - but we have to create kick-butt websites that showcase our talent, as well as show possibilities. Each year we change the theme of the site, and of the conference, to make it more dynamic, and keep our attendees wanting more next year.
Year by year since 2012 - here's how the site has changed:
This was the first year for parallax making a splash for designers - so we showcased this with "Spanky" the T-Rex revealing himself as a parallax background to the conference information. Below are the different phases:
Year 6 saw huge growth, doubling attendance in a larger venue at the Columbia Museum of Art.
With that, we decided to make our own art - illustrating "spirit animals" that represented the different "job types" in our industry (design, development, business, UX, gaming, front-end, and makers) - and used them as static images, animated SVGs, and screen-printed posters.
Pushing forward, Year 7 saw another large increase in attendance, a change from one venue to five. We also made partnerships with two other events, Inde Grits and POSSCON, helping to swell Columbia with web and film buffs. With that, we had to figure out how to make the website fit all of that activity in, making the site easily navigable, and again make it cool.
We decided to have a Lisa Frank / 1990s loud colors type feel to the site, with background images and filtered, animated SVG patterns. And we also brought the writer of Sharknado in for a keynote / comic con type talk - incredibly fun.
This year - April 2016 - it's getting even bigger! We really like the navigation patterns used in 2015, so we went with that again - this time we use experimental Canvas work to give life and movement to the site (note how the site responds to your mouse as you move through it).