Building the Future Now

Digital library and custom CMS for grassroots collective, LA COiL. Made in collaboration with Color Coded.

OVERVIEW

Building the Future Now is a digital library of strategies and case studies for LA COiL. The project was made in collaboration with Color Coded1 and LA COiL2.

SCOPE

Using JAMstack architecture3, I built a custom responsive website with Hexo, a static site generator and blog framework built on Node.js. The site includes a custom CMS built with Netlify CMS, an open source content management system designed to be used with any static site generator and Git workflow. I also designed some of the custom artwork and animated gifs for the site, and added multilingual support.

Tech stack: Hexo, Swig, Stylus, Jade/Pug, Javascript, Markdown, Bulma, Netlify CMS

ROLE

Lead Front-End Developer, Visual Designer

A team of seven people from Color Coded worked on the project, including two project managers (who tooks turns), one lead designer, two design apprentices, and one development apprentice. The design lead focused on typography, layout, and overall design direction. The design apprentices helped make original art for the banners and zine covers. The development apprentice focused on assessibility and testing. We worked closely with members of COiL through out the entire process, from discovery to launch.

PROCESS

During the discovery phase we learned that we would be making a microsite for people with radical politics, rooted in community, who have a habit of retweeting.

So, when coming up with design directions, we asked ourselves:

  1. What if gifs and memes were the driving expression?

  2. How might the design…
    adapt to newer/different audiences over time?
    help content be accessible to older community members? youth?
    reenforce and demonstrate intersectionality?
    allow for horizonalism?

OUTCOME

Website

home page on mobile

home page on mobile

home page on tablet

home page on tablet

home page, spanish version

home page, spanish version
vertical view of blog page on mobile
vertical view of blog page on tablet
horizontal view of blog page on tablet
responsive blog, three views

Custom Artwork and GIFs

zine cover for Cemscawship
zine cover for 'Cemscawship'
zine cover for The Politics and Principles of COiL
zine cover for 'The Politics and Principles of COiL'
zine cover for WTF happened in the 20th century?
zine cover for 'WTF happened in the 20th century?'
zine cover for Unbreakapartable Struggle
zine cover for 'Unbreakapartable Struggle'
banner design for 'cemscawship' (capitalist, eco-murdering, settler colonial, ableist, white supremacist, imperialist heteropatriarchy
banner design for 'Cemscawship'
banner design for 'WTF happened in the 20th century?'
banner design for 'WTF happened in the 20th century?'

Custom CMS

CMS, view of zines collection

CMS, view of zines collection

CMS, view of individual zine page in edit mode

CMS, view of individual zine page in edit mode

CMS, view of individual page in edit mode

CMS, view of individual page in edit mode

CMS, view of editorial workflow

CMS, view of editorial workflow

Visit: buildingthefuturenow.org


NOTES

  1. Color Coded is a POC-only transformative space that centers historically-excluded people in the co-teaching, co-creation, and co-ownership of new technologies. Their work supports and amplifies groups and individuals who are uplifting and sustaining communities of color– in Los Angeles and beyond. ↩︎

  2. COiL is a collective of organizers who are deeply committed to ending “cemscawship” (capitalist, eco-murdering, settler colonial, ableist, white supremacist, imperialist heteropatriarchy) and working towards a just world in which people can flourish as full human beings. ↩︎

  3. The JAMstack is a modern web development architecture based on client-side JavaScript, reusable APIs, and prebuilt Markup. The JAMstack delivers better performance, higher security, lower cost of scaling, and a better developer experience. ↩︎