A Perch site, launched in 2013
About the Client
McLean County Museum of History is a mid-sized AAM-accredited history museum in Bloomington, Illinois. Located in the old county courthouse, which has been beautifully restored to its original grandeur, the museum has four permanent exhibits and two rotating exhibits on a variety of topics in regional history.
In the middle of 2012, I was finishing up my degree in geography with an internship at the local history museum, making web maps for a collection of resources on old schoolhouses. A part of the internship was attending at least one staff meeting. During the meeting I went to, the subject of finding someone to redesign the Museum's website (it was about a decade old at the time, and no longer represented the full wealth of the Museum's programs and exhibits).
I had never built a website before, but I had ideas and plans and an eye for design, so I spent a weekend cobbling together a mockup of what I thought it could look like. They liked it, gave me a chance, and I spent well over a year iterating my way through the project.
I taught myself everything I needed to know as I went along. In retrospect it was maybe "too big" of a project to start with, but I enjoyed the process, and the results were positive. The website's square-based design (which reflects that the Museum sits on the Courthouse Square) became the foundation for their branding and marketing campaigns. To this day, the site draws in thousands of visitors looking for online resources and information on topics in McLean County history, educational programs, and more.