"Simon Sinek said that people don't buy what you do, they buy why you do it. We had a good handle on what we wanted to do, but Resound helped us discover our "why." That gave us the focus and momentum we needed to get off the ground."
Dr. Mary Landau & Mark Tennis
Founders, MPATHY Art
The Blend of Art & Science
The primary purpose of a website is to (eventually) generate business, right? For Mark Tennis and Mary Landau, founders of MPATHY art, it’s about much more than that. They understand that people who buy art generally want something cool and unique to hang on a wall. So, a website that flaunts their ultra-unique collections made sense. But, they were looking to incorporate their main “cause” into the site as well – fighting cancer. They want their art to be a vehicle for making a difference in human life.
If that sounds really lofty and feel-goodish, you don’t know MPATHY art.
Every one of their pieces is LITERALLY sourced from the cells of human beings, many of whom are fighting life-threatening cancers. The beauty of their art often has a tragic story tied to it, so using pieces to educate people and support cancer research actually makes a ton of sense.
It’s a lot to pack into a website, but it helped that our team was completely bought into Mark and Mary’s vision.
On Week 1 of the project we held a half-day workshop with Mark and Mary from MPATHY to wireframe the site’s pages. This wireframe workshop was unique for us, because MPATHY sources much of their visual design work (logo, colors, fonts) through a local designer who specializes in print. His work is awesome, but we were unsure if his background in print design would present challenges in a digital context. It was a bast. We got a little more “in the weeds” than we typically do in a wireframe session, but heck, we’re designers too, so we know how tempting it is to start talking “look and feel” before the guts of the site are in place. It was fun to nerd out.
By the end of the half-day together, we had sketched out (yeah, on paper) the structure for each page of the site and noted specific visual elements or effects imagined by MPATHY’s visual designer. We explored how to bring his vision to life and work within the technical limitations of the Divi theme. Ok, enough prep. Time to write.
Our team wrote nearly 100% of the content for MPATHY’s site. Mark and Mary wanted to have input on their bios (naturally), but the rest of the messaging was in our court. The process of unblanking the page was kickstarted by MPATHY’s brand definition project from months before (when we identified their brand values, personality traits, brand story, and built their verbal guidelines).
With the wireframes in hand, our design team started working on visuals while leaving placeholders in the design for Mary’s art per the wireframes. At the same time, our content team used the wireframes and verbal guidelines to write blocks of content suitable for the text callouts shown on each sketch. As content was completed, the design team dropped it into the site (remember, we were designing/dev’ing the pages simultaneously).
This highly-efficient, yet tactically-risky process meant that the client went from seeing an obscure, hand-sketched notebook page to a fully built, designed, and written webpage within a very short period of time. And they saw far more than one page. By the time the client put eyes on the first deliverable version of the site, it was roughly 85% completed. To our delight – they loved it.
They appreciated how we positioned the art as collectible, commemorative, and even educational throughout the site. We infused an element of their mission into the site’s verbiage as well, featuring MPATHY’s desire to support a variety of cancer research foundations.