About Jason.

I’m a designer, developer, and Drupalist— living just north of Chicago.

I have worn a number of hats in my career, from creative director to web designer to front-end developer. As my interests have evolved, my design background has been a huge asset moving into a full-time digital role.

Designer.
I have a passion for the practice of design. Initially I was focused on traditional design and identity work, but began designing for the web back when Dreamweaver was the tool of choice. These days, I’m focused on providing clients with design systems and creating dynamic user experiences that support client brands and objectives. I believe, that if designers want to be taken seriously we need to understand our client’s business goals in order to provide them with smart design solutions.

Developer.
As my focus turned to web design, understanding the tools and function of a website became key to planning and building dynamic user experiences. At some point I was hooked on making sure my design was translated to the screen correctly. My toolkit as a front-end developer is constantly changing to meet the challenges of my latest project. You can get a lot done with HTML, SASS and some javascript. But incorporating new technology and frameworks is a challenge I embrace!

Drupalist.
My first Drupal site was a freelance project, which required learning Drupal 5 from a book over a weekend. Modules, views, content types and blocks— it was all new to me. At some point, I was hooked. With Drupal 8, I like to keep things as light as possible. Relying on a few key modules, some Twig template work and a Bootstrap based theme. My design thinking informs everything from the public facing theme, to customizing the admin UI for site editors.

I am currently looking to work with amazing people and companies. Focused on finding a role where I can leverage my experience, talent and skills to solving client’s business problems. While being a valuable contributor to an organization and its culture.

Thank you for visiting. If you would like to learn more about me, or chat about working together, please reach out.

Jason Thompson
jthomps86@gmail.com / 847-321-1377

Jason Thompson

Design / Development / Drupalist

A few deep thoughts.

Things I’ve learned the hard way…
  • Clearly defining the problem leads to the solution.
  • The best ideas work in print and online.
  • People will read, if you have something interesting to say.
  • Clients have good ideas too; listen carefully.
  • Choose open source. Especially Drupal.
  • Simple is better; not easier.
  • Spell check.
I’ve been told I am good at…
  • Forming trust with clients and stakeholders.
  • Linking strategy with smart design.
  • Building and leading collaborative teams.
  • Moving seamlessly between design and development.
  • Directing both designers and developers.
  • Learning new tools and technology.
  • Drupal development and training.

Recent work.

Concept / Design / Creative Direction

Lurie Children’s 2017 Annual Report

I have worked with the client stakeholders on strategy, and lead the design and development team for the past several years. The architecture of the microsite is similar each year, so the challenge is always to create a unique, dynamic online report, and find new ways to enhance communication of the hospital’s mission.

This year’s message was "for healthier futures", highlighted with a looping video on the home page, and horizontal scrolling navigation. The interior pages include brief stories about patients, medical discoveries and financials.

Creative Direction / Design / Development / Drupal

Sterling Bay

A Chicago-based commercial real estate firm, Sterling Bay is best known for revitalizing the Fulton Market area of Chicago. This is a second generation of the site, both built on Drupal. In addition to directing the design team, I handled the development of this Drupal 8 site.

The design is actually quite simple, using bold typography and a simple color pallet; as a backdrop for amazing imagery showcasing their commercial properties. The site also includes landing pages and registration for two charity events held annually.

Visit sterlingbay.com

Design / Strategy / UX

Kelley Drye

As a law firm, a key challenge was to design a user experience which is both modern but also appropriate to the content and audience. Beyond the design deliverable, we had a more prominent role in leading the client stakeholders through the process.

Partnering with another firm handling the site architecture and Sharepoint development, my primary role was to lead the design team to create a responsive and intuitive design for this deep and content rich site.

Visit kelleydrye.com

Design / Concept / UX / Wordpress

Skender

A recent Wordpress project, Skender referenced the Sterling Bay website as the key inspiration for their new site. Initial discovery work with many client stakeholders, revealed that their current website no longer reflected the company’s work or dynamic culture.

The new site structure and design more truly reflect the amazing work they do, while also sharing their dynamic culture to attract high-quality job candidates. The project quickly evolved to a full rebrand based largely on the new website.

Visit skender.com

Design / Theme / UX / Wordpress

Erikson Institute

Erikson educates, inspires, and promotes leadership to serve the needs of children and families. But first they needed a major site refresh. The website was already in development when I became involved. However, the project had stalled and was in need of serious guidance, from UI/UX design, structure refinements, to simple definitions around the use of color and typography.

As a first step, the design team presented several approaches to stakeholders for making the site visually cohesive and easier to navigate. This included using the Erikson brand colors as a way finding tool, defining a design system with color treatments for imagery, a splash of iconography to highlight key messaging, and great typography.

The developer had already done a great job of migrating content and setting up the Wordpress backend. So once the UI/UX was defined, we focused on working with the client to implement content changes, reorganizing page structures, refining the site theme, as well as coordinating with the development team to pull everything together for launch. It was a huge endeavor, but a great success.

Visit erikson.edu

Drupal.

My first Drupal site was built in Drupal 5 over a weekend, using a book. Somehow I was hooked. I've been working in Drupal 8 for about 2 years, both theming and development. While Drupal isn’t the right tool for every project, I’m always ready to chat up clients about Drupal.

Here are a few other Drupal projects…

Amerigo Education / Drupal 8
Priester Aviation / Drupal 7

Current skills and experience.

My Favorite Tools
  • Coffee
  • Drupal 8
  • Sketch
  • InVision
  • SASS
  • Bootstrap
  • Twig/php
  • GIT
  • GitHub
  • jQuery/Javascript
  • UXPin
  • MailChimp
  • Trello
  • Dropbox
  • VSCode
  • DevDesktop
  • Lando/Docksal
  • Docker
  • Adobe Photoshop
  • Siteimprove
Client Experience
  • Abbott
  • Acciona Energy
  • Amerigo Education
  • AstroTurf
  • Baxter
  • Chicago White Sox
  • Cingular Wireless
  • Conner Sport Flooring
  • Erikson Institute
  • Figo Pet Insurance
  • Gwendolyn Brooks College Prepatory Academy
  • Kelley Drye
  • Komatsu
  • Lurie Children’s
  • Motorola
  • Northwestern University
  • Priester Aviation
  • Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago
  • RTC
  • Skender Construction
  • Sterling Bay
  • Unisource
  • Wheaton College

My background.

  • Work history

    Duo Consulting

    Senior Frontend Developer / 2018 ~ present

    Currently, I am working with a great team of front and backend developers building Drupal sites. This includes custom development and theming for new Drupal 8 sites. As well as, on-going enhancement, support and maintenance on existing Drupal 7/8 sites. This has been a great opportunity to really dig deep into the techncial aspects of Drupal, javascript, component-based theming. Plus, I still have the opportunity to handle UX design and work with clients when required.

  • Pivot Design

    Digital Team Lead / 2007 ~ 2018

    As the Digital Team Lead, I managed a team of designers and developers. Established processes for managing digital work, directed and collaborated with designers, developers, and vendors on various types of deliverables, including small and large websites, html campaigns, native iOS apps, social media, Drupal and Wordpress sites.

    I engaged directly with clients, guiding them through the full-lifecycle of digital projects, including requirement gathering, presentations, site architecture, UI/UX design, content strategy, prototyping and development. I was also involved in new business development, finding new opportunities with existing clients, and writing the occasional proposal.

  • Strategy One

    Creative Director / 2000 ~ 2007

    As creative director. I was actively involved with new business development, managing the creative team and hands on design work. Design assignments varied from corporate identity, collateral, direct mail, publications, exhibits, packaging and websites.

  • Studio North

    Art Director / 1993 ~ 1998

    At StudioNorth, I developed strategic programs for clients. These programs worked across various media including; print collateral, corporate identity systems, direct mail and the internet.

  • Skillset / expertise
  • Front-end development
  • UI/UX design
  • Web design
  • Drupal
  • Creative direction
  • Digital strategy
  • Design systems
  • Responsive design
  • WordPress
  • Awards / recognition
  • 2017 WebAward for Outstanding Achievement, Legal Standard of Excellence
  • Graphis Platinum Award
  • Society of Typographic Arts - Archive 09
  • American Graphic Design Awards 05, 06
  • Creativity 34, 35, 36
  • American Corporate ID 21
  • PRINT RDA 2004

Thank you for visiting. I kept the detail to a minimum, so if you would like to learn more about me, or chat about working together, please reach out.

jthomps86@gmail.com  847-321-1377