James Lin

Hi and welcome to my portfolio!

Please take a look at the projects I created below. Every link you go to will feature both designs and front-end development created by me unless otherwise noted.

Active & Most Recent Projects

Spectrum Nexus, created in 1998, focuses on Japanese anime. Spectrum Nexus was the first site I ever made, and has grown into something I'm proud to say is my own. All aspects of the website (design, content, server, SEO optimization, advertisements) are done by myself. It was my first website that I started as a hobby when I was 13 years old! The design was created in 2006 and has received little updates; early on creating websites I learned "content is king" and so I've been focused on adding new content throughout the years.

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  • Active since 1998
  • Received over 5.5 billion hits
  • Users have spent equivalent to 3500+ years on the site

In 2015 I started getting more serious about tennis and quickly found a great group of tennis players near my new home on the coast. Since I was playing over 8 hours a week of free tennis, I wanted to give back by handling the website duties for this non-profit organization of 150+ members. I completely revamped their site with Wordpress and am handling their future newsletters with InDesign (in hopes to rid of the world of any future PDF created from Microsoft Word!) along with any other graphical/technical job they need done.

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  • Active since 10/2015

Rent SF Now is one of San Francisco's premiere apartment renting companies. They have many of the best properties that people spend their whole month's salary on. I joined for a small project to work with their in-house CMS and ended up staying longer to revamp their existing website. Built with Wordpress, their old site was a nightmare to work with. Every page had to be edited with the WYSIWYG Visual Composer plugin, and so seemingly small changes would take hours to do across multiple pages. I went in to replicate their site, but add a much better user experience for both end users as well as those editing the sites.

On their site has almost 200 properties and some with just apartments and others with fully furnished suites. I made the best use of Wordpress by allowing each of these properties to be their own post, and so if you made one change to it, it would change site wide as it's listed in many areas. On top of that, I had creative freedom to make the site mobile friendly how I saw fit, and I changed the way entire sections looked to be more inviting and user friendly.

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  • Active since 4/2016

The Market Street Prototyping Festival is a yearly event in San Francisco that is very unique and shows off a number of street exhibits. I received this project from The Creative Group and it consisted of building out an entire functional and easily updated Wordpress site through (of all things) Adobe InDesign files. Definitely a first for me as most mock ups are in Photoshop format. This site made use of numerous plugins that I never worked with before and so each one presented a challenge as I needed to really customize them to cater to the vision. I made use of the latest Foundation CSS framework (and a blank Wordpress theme), numerous plugins (Master Slider, myEventON, Flickr Gallery, Like Buttons), and Advanced Custom Fields to make the admin side easy to work with depending on what Template the editor selected. It was one of the most advanced Wordpress sites I built out and I'm happy to make it come to life from just some InDesign files and PDFs. I passed along the site back to the company and the graphic designer there easily edited the site as they received new content and let me know how easy it was to work with.

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  • 1/2016 - 3/2016

Delta Dental needed some help with a splash page for a portal they were releasing. What made this project unique to me was I had to revisit my old roots as a web designer and make everything work reasonably well for IE8. The page looks simple but it had to be responsive for every browser/mobile, and feature an accordion menu or drop down menu depending on the size of it. On top of all that, no Javascript should be used, so it was fun to find a CSS-only accordion solution that worked if people clicked back on their browser. This project also made me appreciate how good modern browsers are and suffice to say I could do without ever needing to find IE8 hacks again!

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  • 12/2015 - 1/2016

Working with The Creative Group, I worked with this non-profit organization, Beyond 12, to build their site from Photoshop files to a full functional Wordpress site that their team could update and manage. The scope of the project sounded simple at first: get mockups and put them into Wordpress. To my surprise, they did not have Wordpress or a server that could handle Wordpress! The previous company doing their website seemingly went out of their way to delay the project by making a static website, which really shocked me how some designers can take zero pride in their work.

The project suddenly became larger but I was up for the task. I worked with them in finding a new reliable host that specialized in Wordpress, and from there worked some magic on their small budget to get a full website up. Thankfully there was a lot more design work than just front-end development as a lot of the mockups they wanted my take on it.

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  • 8/2015 - 11/2015

One of my friends started professionally casting a popular video game, Nintendo's Smash Bros Melee. I've been a fan of gaming streams (like those found on Twitch.tv) so I helped SD Melee TV by producing graphics for it and I will be in charge of creating the website for it soon. Right now the events SD Melee TV holds are small but they are quickly gaining traction and they've begun casting larger tournaments with hundreds of participants and thousands of viewers!

I have a few side projects with the above companies. I did not do the primary designs for these companies; instead I am working on the front-end development side and also making visual design changes along the way and leaving my mark on the overall designs.

Completed Projects

Loto Labs

I joined Loto Labs as the VP of Technology and worked as a jack of all trades including everything from the logo, website, copy, print, ads, to the fundraising campaign. The goal for Loto Labs was to create the world's first induction vaporizer. We used Indiegogo as our crowdfunding platform and I helped propel it with all marketing copy and a professional design that helped get the public excited for our product.

We successfully raised over $225,000, over 300% more than our asking of $70,000. With my goal of a successful crowdfunding campaign complete, my heart wasn't into it as vaporizers and that industry isn't something I'm passionate about, so I stepped away with the company in great shape.

My friends Stanley and Sarah asked me to do their wedding website which I happily accepted. They didn't have many ideas for the site so I threw a few designs together for them only for them to reject them all (life of a designer I suppose!) I sat with them at their apartment and they helped me design the site over my shoulder.

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I worked with the owner of Zendo Pets to nail down the look/feel of the website, logo, flyers, etc. We previously worked on Pacifica Pet Care and it really helped boost the owner's company profile.

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  • 4/2014 - 9/2013

Threefoldphotos · Smile by Webshots

I did front end development contract work for Threefoldphotos to help them launch their product. Their product, Smile by Webshots, is a sophisticated photo service that combines users' photos from various sources (offline, Facebook, Instagram, etc) all into one easy to view/manage/share place.

Their environment consisted of Rails, and I would primarily work in HTML5/CSS as well as the stricter HAML/SASS equivalent. They made use of Github revision control system that also incorporates issues/tickets into one service. From there I would work with marketing and engineers to resolve bugs ranging from cross browser issues of their application, to getting the pages pixel perfect on their corporate site.

All of the example links are working HTML pages. They were intended to be viewed fullscreen and will look best if opened in a new tab.