Richard Rosen

Renowned marketing consultant and author Richard Rosen wanted to shift the focus of his website towards speaking engagements and seminars. Working closely with his partner Jane, I redesigned and rebuilt the website from scratch with a strong emphasis on Richard’s personality as a public speaker, using images of him in action as well as incorporating video on most of the site’s pages.

“Kudos to Jefferson Powers for his brilliant work creating the new site.”

— Jane Rosen on LinkedIn


Home Sweet Home Realty fundraiser poster

HSH-poster-v3.inddLike most posters, the challenge for this one was to pack in all the information the client wanted to include, while at the same time avoiding the poster being to busy or overwhelming the viewer with too much information. In addition to the poster, I created a table tent for use at the event itself.

Women Composers Festival of Hartford posters

2013 Women Composers Festival of Hartford poster WCF-2014Client: Daniel Morel, Festival Director

There were two challenges with these festival posters: there were a limited number of visual assets available, and a lot of information needed to be included on the poster (the entire festival schedule). I decided to rely on the headline type and background image to generate initial interest, prompting the viewer to (hopefully) move closer to the poster in order to read the schedule and other information.

Legacy Land Stewardship


The challenge with this website, for a Denver-based land stewardship firm, was to present a large amount of complex information without overwhelming the viewer with bland, featureless text. We opted for a very simple graphic design, replaced text with infographics where possible and practical, and made use of large margins and negative space to reduce the visual impact of the text.

“Jefferson worked on three different websites for me over a several month period.  His work was fantastic, and his speed and responsiveness is unparalleled. I’d highly recommend Jefferson for anybody looking for website work.”

— Eric Williams
Executive Director, EnviroFinance Group
Managing Partner, Tellurium Partners
President, Legacy Land Stewardship


Home Stage Home


This was the second time I did a website design refresh for this client, a Portland-area home stager. This time, we opted for a WordPress website that would offer modern features such as an image slider on the home page, and a gallery of before and after images that can be easily updated with new images.

“For a very reasonable fee, Jefferson re-vamped my website and visually improved it immensely. As a home stager I have a gallery of pictures that needs to take center stage and Jefferson did that beautifully. This guy knows his stuff!”

— Kate Jahnson, Home Stage Home


Visual Translations

Visual Translations website design by Jefferson Powers

The challenge for Visual Translations was to convey a lot of information about what they do without overwhelming visitors to their website. Their old website had a lot of content on it, which I worked with them to re-organize, cutting material where necessary. We settled on a simple, unobtrusive design that would allow their infographics to be the website’s focus.

“Jefferson updated my website to WordPress, and within two weeks I had secured a valuable new client inquiry that will result in new work revenues far exceeding Jefferson’s reasonable fees.  He is a patient and thoughtful consultant who I highly recommend to anyone looking for an efficient refresh or new site design.”

— Mark Allen, Visual Translations


Home Sweet Home Realty

Home Sweet Home Realty website design by Jefferson Powers

This Portland-based realty company had a stock WordPress site that they wanted to bring in line with their overall rebranding campaign. I was able to come up with a look that complemented their marketing strategy, while also incorporating many realty tools such as a map search, featured properties slide show, and lead capturing that were underutilized on their previous website.

“Jefferson is great! Every step of the process, from design to implementation, was quick and easy. He’s fast, responsive and friendly… and we now have a great website. Highly recommended!”

— J. Ryan Potts, Home Sweet Home Realty


Just Jane Inc.

JustJane Inc website design by Jefferson Powers

Writer/producer Jane Rosen needed to upgrade her static website to one that could serve dynamic content and that she could easily edit and update. I helped her reorganize her existing content, making changes and additions where needed, and built the site in WordPress, the best platform to incorporate the client’s need for easy updates and a blog she could post new content to regularly.

Later, I worked with Jane to refresh the design of her website, updating it to a more modern, streamlined look and feel while retaining most of her existing written content.

“What began as a conversation about my desire to update my website became a productive and delightful collaboration with Jefferson. I threw out a few ideas and he manifested several designs for me — each one artfully crafted and worthy of consideration. Once the design was chosen, I put together pages of copy and Jefferson incorporated images and design elements to make it interesting and active. Let’s face it, there’s nothing worse than a wordy, confusing website — and Jefferson made sure I didn’t fall down that rabbit hole. He was a joy to work with and brought it all together effortlessly. I highly recommend Jefferson for web design and other creative endeavors.”

— Jane C. Rosen of JustJane Inc.


Best plugins for WordPress security and backup

I will be the first to admit that I don’t know very much about internet security. It’s the main reason I steer clear of working on e-commerce websites and others that deal with highly sensitive information. Sure, I know enough not to use the same easy-to-guess password for everything, but when it comes to hackers, I don’t really understand how they do it, and I only partially understand why they do it.

When faced with any evidence of hacking, my usual response is to “nuke the entire site from orbit,” to use the famous quote from Aliens (1986). That is, to delete the entire website and restore from an off-site backup. Its kind of like demolishing your house when you find out you have roaches, but only if you could somehow keep a backup copy of your house and easily rebuild it once the rubble had been cleared away.


Luckily for me, most of the website work I do is in WordPress, and WordPress has a large and enthusiastic community of developers who know a lot more about security than I do, and there are quite a few utility plugins available to help you detect, prevent and recover from the damage done by unauthorized use of your website.

These are the two that I recommend for just about any WordPress website:

Wordfence Security

Wordfence is my favorite WordPress security plugin. It is easy to install and use, and it has a lot of really useful features. It provides a live view of traffic to your website so you can see what countries and IP addresses visitors to your site are coming from, and it allows you to block individual IP addresses from accessing your website if you think they’re up to no good. It also has a feature that will limit the number of failed login attempts, which is helpful against hacking programs that keep throwing random passwords at your website until they find the right one.

But Wordfence’s most useful feature is a daily scan of all the files in your website, where it checks them against a database for changes, makes sure you have the most current versions of your core software and plugins, detects files containing possible malicious code, and sends you an email alert if it detects a problem. If nothing else, this serves as a great reminder when you need to update a plugin, but it might also help you detect a hacking attempt before it has a chance to get too far.


Everyone knows that you should back up all your files and data on a regular basis. Everyone also knows what a hassle it is to remember to back up all your files and data on a regular basis. BackWPUp is a great automatic backup utility. You can set it up to make regular scheduled backup copies of some or all of your website files, as well as your database. It will save them wherever you like: in a directory on your website’s server, on a remote server via FTP, or to your DropBox account or a selection of other cloud storage services. Having an off-site backup of your website is a lot better than rebuilding it from scratch, and it’s really nice to have a simple utility that does the work for you.  

The Changing Face of Information

Designing for the web and designing for print are, of course, two very different animals, but not as different as you might think. Websites have a lot in common with magazines in the way they structure information on a page: leading with attention grabbing headlines, using boxes and color to call out important information, even organizing content into sections and pages. Those annoying subscription cards that fall out of magazines are certainly the paper equivalent of pop-up ads.

The differences mostly have to do with formatting. With a print piece, you know exactly the size and shape of the page, and you can completely control where everything appears and it what order. Websites are by nature more fluid; adjustments need to be made for different browsers and mobile devices, and viewers have more control over small details like font sizes, but you still have a fair amount of control over where content appears on your web page, the size of the images, font styles, and how the pages break up.

kindle-iconI recently completed formatting an ebook for the Amazon Kindle. The ebook format is like a bucket of fluid content, which the reader software pours into pages – what appears on each individual page depends entirely on the screen size and the reader’s choices of font style and size. Kindle users even have a small amount of control over the font and background colors. The format doesn’t really give the designer any control at all over font styles, colors, image placement… It was very difficult to even control where page breaks occur, which was essential for my project, a book of photographs.

In the end, creating a book for the Kindle was an exercise in patience and compromise. With ebooks, content really is king, to the point that you are forced to evaluate your content and the order it is presented in. Since you can’t rely on headlines, boxes and color to call attention to the important information, you have to make sure all your content is important.

There might be a lesson to be learned there, one that could be applied to websites and even print pieces as well.