Celilo Natural Health Center

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Celilo Natural Health Center is the Naturopathic practice of Dr. Orna Izakson ND, RH (AHG), located in Portland, OR.

I was first contacted by Orna through a company that I occasionally do freelance work for, Chipboard Creative. This would be the second health-oriented practice I have designed for. From day 1, my experience with Orna has been one of the best designer-client experiences I have had (they’ve all been exceptionally good) and I hope to work with her again should she have any future web or print design needs.

The logo, previously created by another designer, dictated the color scheme and heading elements of the site. One thing she knew she wanted early on in the process, was something a bit more ‘catchy’ for the title headings of the content area. After showing me some examples of sites with heading styles she liked, I had (what I like to think of as) a stroke of brilliance, and created the reduced-opacity salmon heading, tying in the logo with the content area, nicely.

Since this is a western Oregon-based practice (and because of the name of the practice), I felt it should have a very ‘Oregony’ feel, which meant greenery and fir trees — all of which I believe have been successfully accomplished, from the overall color and tone, the sloped treeline to the right of the header area, down to the post-footer’s semi-transparent treeline.

The navigation bar, is another one of my favorite sections of the site. A simple, right-floated, text-driven menu with drop-downs, and social networking icons and an internal search-bar to the left.

Each page has it’s own sub-header photo, all of which were taken by Dr. Izakson, herself. The photos are stunningly beautiful and add a richness to the site, keeping the design fresh with each page load.

I wanted to separate the sidebar from the content area with some kind of divider, but wasn’t content with completely separating it from the content, nor did I want to use a solid, 1 color border. I finally created a slight ‘scored’ effect, giving the main wrapper a bit of depth and physical feel.

The sidebar was of particular focus in the latter stages of the design’s build. Sidebar content varies from one page to another, something I hadn’t really worked with before. This required a bit of research, but I finally located a plugin-in which allowed us to easily choose which sidebar items appear on what pages. The decision to do this stemmed from Orna’s desire to have the tag-cloud and blog categories on the blog page only, and not throughout the entire site.

The footer was kept relatively simple. I suggested adding her address and phone to the footer, filling it out a bit, as well as providing contact information, on each page of the site. Orna loved this idea, so I forged ahead, keeping contact info to the¬† right, copyright info to the left, and Taproot Web Hosting’s icon, center. Taproot is a company that Orna very much wanted to support and help promote. The final footer design shows a nice, clean and balanced layout that closes the bottom of the page, nicely.

While there were a number of revisions along the way, the final version remained fairly true to the original mock-up idea she had chosen from the 5 I presented to her — something that doesn’t always happen in the field of design.

Celilo Natural Health Center is built on WordPress for use as a CMS and as of this posting meets W3C validation requirements for XHTML and CSS. It is also compliant with all current, major browsers, as well as IE6 & 7.

I want to thank Orna once again for a lovely design experience. She became my ‘No. 1’ fan, and took it upon herself to promote my design services by word-of mouth — and continues to do so. For that, I cannot thank her enough! Orna, you rock!

As mentioned, Celilo Natural Health Center is hosted through Taproot Web Hosting, a local green hosting company  that I happily recommend using.