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“In 2013, the Westerville Public Library embarked on a year-long website redesign.

One of the goals of this project was to “humanize” the library’s web presence. This medium-size library has a staff full of personality, but in comparison, its¬†website was stark, relying mostly on text and small images to advertise events and services.

With the idea of showing that the employees are their organization’s most important asset, that they’re not “just an empty building” and that their goal was to show their customers that they’re friendly, helpful and approachable, they teamed up with a local design firm Bonfire Red, software developers AWH, and a commercial photography company George C. Anderson Photography, Inc.¬†to capture their personality in photographs that could be used throughout the new website.

Bonfire Red was able to provide a branding direction to ensure a consistent look & feel for the custom photography. They suggested a clean, uncluttered, almost documentary-like style, with candid shots of staff and customers that would provide a glimpse of what happens at the library. Careful consideration was given to ensure that each photo would allow for copy space and, wherever possible, natural sunlight was used as a backdrop.

Over the course of two photo shoots, George C. Anderson was able to capture high-quality images of library staff performing everyday functions, such as answering reference questions, leading book clubs, reading books during storytimes, providing computer assistance, etc. with loyal customers who generously willing to sign releases and become models for the day. Headshots of the managers, Adult Services, Youth Services and Outreach staff were also included.

These photos are now being used throughout the website to advertise events, services and the staff themselves, transforming the library into an active, vibrant place.” ((you can browse around and see many more of these photos yourself from the Services & Support page))

Westerville Homepage Before-After

Submitted by: T. Murray, Westerville Public Library

Institution: Westerville Public Library
Creators: Bonfire Red with AWH and George C. Anderson Photography, Inc.