Archive | Web Design RSS feed for this section

Grit Free Soda Blasting

Grit Free Soda BlastingGritFree Blasting is the brainchild of Peter Wardley. Peter sought an outlet more focussed on automotive, marine and aviation restoration, with an informal, fun, yet informative approach. It all started early in 2010, but due to the popularity of Soda Blasting, Ecoblast often left us to get on with the site. This was fun in many ways as it allowed us to fit more creative work into the job at our leisure.

Baking Soda MoleculeDespite only recently going live with the website, the GritFree team had been busy throughout 2011 and the Soda Blasting examples shown in their Portfolio page demonstrate how well the process is trusted by prestige customers.

Unlike shot blasting, the GritFree process is non-destructive. It was important to emphasise this, so graphics that were originally developed for parent company Ecoblast UK Ltd were re-used.

The job required a logo to be developed from the Ecoblast brand, some custom illustrations, and some original photography!

Seven common SEO myths busted

Listening to some folks, you’d swear the tooth fairy really did exist. However painful the truth might be, she doesn’t.As much as it would be lovely if she did, she just doesn’t.

Party pooping aside, it’s amazing how some myths just refuse to die. Case in point – there are still dozens of common myths that still float around regarding Search Engine Optimisation (SEO). Only recently a customer felt that unless he had keywords added to his site using meta tags that the sky would fall down and nobody would ever find him on Google.

Lets have a look at the seven most common SEO myths that simply refuse to die, bought to me by my customers. Read More…

How to Move WordPress – Essentials tutorial

OK, I should probably qualify the title. This guide should give you all you need to know to be able to move a standard WordPress (i.e. NOT WordPress MU edition)  site from one location to another. What I’m not going to discuss here are the SEO redirects that you will need to do to prevent rank loss, or what you will need to do if you also want to alter your permalink structure at the same time.

Moving WordPress strikes fear into many a web developer, but it doesn’t have to be such a nightmare. There are a few possibilities when you move wordpress:

  • You may be moving the installation path e.g. from to
  • You may be moving to a new domain e.g. from to
  • You may be moving hosts, from one server to another.

Or, if you are a real blog-warrior, you’ll be attempting to do two or more of the above! Read More…

Typekit Cufon FLIR sIFR, Which web font system is best?

Breaking out from web-safe fonts

Times New Roman, Helvetica, Arial, Verdana, Georgia, Tahoma, Tebuchet etc., For the longest time, web designers were stuck with using so called “web safe” fonts. These are fonts that you find on most common operating systems, such as Microsoft Windows, Apple Mac OS, and various Linux distributions (distros). By sticking to these core fonts you can be pretty confident that your website is going to render in the way you intended, and that a serious typographical faux-pas can be avoided.

Breaking out of web safe fontsWe’re going to look at a few ways to introduce (with reasonable safety) some typographical variety into your website, along with the advantages and disadvantages associated with each method. It is important to understand, there is no “best” solution for everyone, but hopefully this article can help you explore the possibilities.

When Times isn’t Times

For anyone who hasn’t already cottoned on, web browsers rely on the fonts already installed on your PC in order to render them on screen. Even “web safe” fonts are not strictly the same from platform to platform. Times New Roman on a Windows 7 machine isn’t necessarily going to be the same typeface as Times Roman on an Apple Mac. Read More…

Union Branch Website Offer – Public Services

Union Branch WebsitesAsk yourself these questions…

  • Are you a member of a UNISON or UNITE trade union branch?
  • Are you reeling from the onslaught of the Tory cut backs?
  • Do you need to gain more members, and improve communication with existing members?

Now, more than ever, you need to reach out to the workforce!

A branch website you can manage for only £350+vat

There – that’s the bottom line. I’m not messing about! To find out more go to either of the following sample websites:

There’s no catch. It’s the best deal you are likely to find from a professional designer. Why? Because I believe it’s necessary to help trade unions everywhere to gather strength for the political and economic s**t storm we now find ourselves in. Read More…

How to use prettyPhoto in WordPress Galleries

Just a quick hack I thought I would document to help anyone else out there wondering how to do this.

WordPress now has a simple gallery shortcode, to enable the inclusion of a gallery of all images associated with your post. By default, you just get a grid of images that either link to another page containing the image, or a link directly to the image. Either way, it’s not terribly pretty, and it seems tantalisingly close to something that would look half decent if only something like prettyPhoto (a lightbox clone) could be leveraged. It can!

The gallery shortcode goes something like this:

[gallery link="file"]

It is fully documented here. Basically, this uses the function wp_get_attachment_link inside the /wp-includes/post-template.php file. You could either hack the core function (line 970 on WP3.0) changing:

return apply_filters( 'wp_get_attachment_link', "<a href='$url' title='$post_title'>$link_text</a>", $id, $size, $permalink, $icon, $text );


return apply_filters( 'wp_get_attachment_link', "<a href='$url' title='$post_title' rel='prettyPhoto[slides]'>$link_text</a>", $id, $size, $permalink, $icon, $text );

A better solution

After a bit of reading (thanks to ThemeShaper), I figured out how to use the hooks system, to build a simple function, and filter to modify the output of wp_get_attachment_link. Just pop this code into your template’s functions.php file:

add_filter( 'wp_get_attachment_link', 'sant_prettyadd');
function sant_prettyadd ($content) {
	$content = preg_replace("/<a/","<a rel=\"prettyPhoto[slides]\"",$content,1);
	return $content;

Obviously, you could alter the regex above to do just about anything you like to the output of wp_get_attachment_link, but this does what I set out to do.

PrettyPhoto installation

Obviously, this requires prettyPhoto to be installed and activated on the page for the effect to work. prettyPhoto is available as a WP Plugin – much easier than hacking it into your theme manually. Here’s a sample of how it works: