Welcome to the new and improved IAmMikeYoung.com! I’ve been working on updating the entire site for a few weeks now and I am pretty happy with the final result. As I learn more about web design, I enjoy putting my new skills to good use. The site has been aesthetically refined, and the structure has changed slightly to emphasize specific areas of my work. There’s a new landing page—so you’re not forced to read my blog if you don’t wanna—and the Works page has been broken out into Print, Web, and Illustration.
However, many things about which I am most proud are under the hood. For starters, this version is built on PHP rather than HTML. Previously, the header, footer, and page navigation were coded into every page. This meant that the browser had to read and load them again and again. Now, they are coded as separate files that are called from the server only one time. So they load faster, but it’s also easier for me to make site updates; I can make a change to one file and have it instantly appear everywhere.
I’m also using little bits of CSS3 and Typekit. All drop shadows and rounded frame corners are done with code rather than graphics, and I’m using a couple of genuine fonts—Chaparral Pro and Myriad Pro—to make the typography a little classier and more interesting. In terms of basic design, the entire site is now wider, and the main content area has been widened from 400 px to 560 px, so everything more room to breathe. I’m especially proud of my new Contact page, the new blog comments form, and the new “comic speech bubble” format for reader comments. These were the hardest things to pull off in terms of raw code, and I’m proud to say that I was able to puzzle everything out on my own (with a little help from Google).
I doubt that this will be the last update to the site, but it should tide me over for at least several months. Now that this is out of the way, my wife Heather and I can turn our attention to heatherplusmike.com and maybe finally start working on the cooking blog she has been planning. (I’m trying to talk Tom Kurzanski in to creating some original art for that one.) Until then, please enjoy the new look of the site and drop me a note to tell me what you think!