CASE STUDY: Design & build

Illustrated website for award-winning author Emily Gravett

We brought to life the excellent work of author and illustrator, Emily Gravett, by creating a website for parents, teachers and children.

Introduction

Emily Gravett is a renowned children's author and illustrator. Her first book, Wolves, rose to fame when it was published in 2005, winning the Kate Greenaway award. She has since gone on to write other excellent books such as Little Mouse's Big Book of Fears, for which she also won the Kate Greenaway award in 2007. Her latest books include the Bear and Hare series and Tidy. Her books are made unique by her hand drawn illustrations of her endearing characters.

We have been working with Pan Macmillan on many of projects, including their own website, for a number of years. We were delighted to continue this relationship with their latest author website.

Pan Macmillan

Brief

The goal of this project was to create a website dedicated to the work of Emily Gravett that would showcase her work and her amazing illustrations. It was decided that the website needed to cater to several different demographics, including parents and teachers who could download activity sheets. Parents and children that could complete the website activities together and find out more about her works and where to get them and finally, illustration students, of which Emily has a large following, that could find out more about her work and career.

Solution

Distinction built a library home page filled with hand drawn elements by Emily Gravett to showcase her unique characters and to guide the user around the website. To do this we made a unique site that abandons the traditional web design of a vertical scroll, instead utilising a horizontal scroll to allow for further exploration of the library setting.

In the library, there is a rabbit librarian which provides the user with a tour at the beginning of the site visit so that users know where certain site functions can be found. There is a traditional top bar navigation but there are also links throughout the library home page that are figurative objects for the sections that they lead to. For example, there is a bookshelf that leads to the books section and a computer with a video that leads to the videos section.

These sections cater to the needs to their target audience. The books section is provided for parents and teachers that would like to find out about Emily Gravett's latest releases and the activity section provides downloadable content for parents and teachers to use with children. There are also activities on the site, such as the create a bookplate section, which allows children to get creative and make their own book cover using a choice of elements such as hand drawn characters by Emily Gravett and settings from her books. This provides children with fun activities to complete whilst on the site.

Results

This unique site looks fantastic and delves into the world of Emily Gravett, bringing her characters and stories to life. It also caters to the needs of the target audience, providing fun activities for parents and children to do whilst on site as well as activities for parents and teachers to download and print off to complete at a later stage.

We've had excellent feedback both from Pan Macmillan and users of the site. There are also excellent measurable results, including the fact that the bounce rate for the site is only 2.71%.

What do Pan Macmillan say?

James LuscombeWeb Operations Director

“The new website for Emily Gravett is our latest author site that truly succeeds in bringing her work to life. Thanks to our work with Distinction, it has been a huge success with parents and teachers to use with children to explore the work of this great author.


Working with Distinction has meant that the life of content editors is as easy as possible as they find easy solutions to tasks that would have otherwise been difficult. This relates particularly to the Create a Bookplate feature, for which the drag and drop images can be easily managed by content editors through the media library.


Furthermore, by using Kentico, we could implement certain functions without having to compromise on the design. For example, on the activity page, the various activities are arrayed as if on a table, rather than conforming to a standard structure. Features such as these have helped us to create a site that perfectly reflects the world of Emily Gravett for parents and children so for us the project has been a great success.”

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