- personal portfolio site of digital designer Rich Dean.

Creative. Design. Technology.

I create beautiful design and engaging experiences to help brands flourish. I’m passionate about doing great work with great people: I’ve worked with big brands and one-man bands, designing websites, brand identity and print work to help them grow.

I run design agency Supersonic Playground.

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Designing an agency website that responds to responsive

Zone is a leading London digital agency, working for some of the biggest brands in the world. So with such a strong reputation, how do you create a new website that is fully responsive and best-in-class?

Zone homepage in computer display
Zone homepage

Responsive design has brought about a massive change in our industry over the last couple of years. When we redesigned the Zone website, responsive was a leading factor – at the time very few agencies in the too 100 lists had responsive websites, so it would give us a big advantage over our competitors, but there was also a bigger business need. We were advising our clients to include responsive in their digital strategy, so it was only right that we lead by example.

Versatile grid

Zone grid

The site is designed around the versatile 1000px grid that I’ve developed and used across a number of other projects. It turns pixels into percentages so makes designing for fluid responsive site much easier than other grids.

The design kit

Zone design kit Zone responsive breakpoints

To make the process even more efficient, I also created a design kit, which is a sheet of core components from the site. Combined with wireframes, this negates the need to design lots of templates, so I only needed to concentrate on a key few.

The design kit also allowed me to be quite modular in my designs, and this really helped with the responsive aspect of the site. One of my key insights is that, with responsive, a modular, content first approach is far better than concentrating on fixed screen sizes.

The page designs

Zone Case Studay page in multiple devices Zone Case Study page

While the site was based around a core set of templates, I also wanted some pages – particularly the case studies – to have a bespoke, custom feel.

Zone What We Do page

The site has been really successful and has helped to secure quite a few responsive-based projects, as well as receiving industry recognition for the quality of the execution.

About me

I believe that design should be available to everyone. It doesn’t matter what your company’s size, budget or business is: great design will help you tell your story better. Design isn’t just about visual style: it can change how your business works, and how your customers see you.

I run design agency Supersonic Playground, based in Lordswood, near Maidstone in Kent. I have 16 years’ experience in design, most recently as head of design for Zone, voted 2014’s number 1 independent agency in the UK by The Drum magazine. I relish working collaboratively, and put my utmost into every project.

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