Responses by Akufen
Background: The goal of the Fantasia Festival website redesign was to offer a more user-friendly experience to the festival’s fans, who were attached to the old-fashioned version of the website. To do so, we focused on improving the access to the festival’s schedule and program through a revised movie index using many filters and an advanced search feature for the movies.
Highlights: We put a lot of thought in to filter the movie listings so there would be as little friction as possible for the user, as well as in the creation of the agenda and the “favorite” feature. As for the design, we put the emphasis on the homepage hero dynamics. Every year, the festival has iconic posters to showcase and we wanted to put them in the forefront. To make it a little bit more fun, we also chose to skew the mouse-over by direction, playing with the angles and the perspectives.
Challenges: The back-end had to be connected to an external database, so we needed to build a strong import script to gather all the data. On top of that, it was Akufen’s first big website using Craft as a CMS. We opted for a flexible template with fifteen different types of content. The result is that the client can build any page necessary, but we had to deal with a lot of exceptions and bugs along the way to make it work.
Favorite details: That we reached what we had in mind for the hero content on the homepage in terms of fluidity and performance. Overall, we believe the website offers a great experience! Everything is extremely smooth and puts the movies’ visuals and the essence of the festival in the forefront.
Technical features: Not only was it the first time that we used Craft 3, but it wasn’t even released when the development phase began. We had to dig deep in Craft, with close to no documentation, to make a plugin to import from an API pretty much all the content related to the programming. And even after all that work, we still had a website with a lot of intricate mechanics to work on.