David J. "DJ" Helfrich

digital enthusiast

JavaScript, jQuery, jQuery UI, Less Css, Bootstrap Twitter, HTML 5, CSS 2-3, git, XML, ActionScript 2-3, SSH, Responsive layouts, jQuery mobile, cakePHP, cake bake, Wordpress, Perforce, Toad, Jet Brains, TextMate, Adobe Creative Suite, User Interfaces, User Experience, Design Theory, Graphic Design, Problem Solving, QA, OS 9 - X, Windows 95 – 7, FTP, Firebug, PHP, MySQL, bash, C#, RESTful web services, VB.NET, MVC3, Final Cut Pro, Visual Studio, Text Wrangler, XSLT, FirePHP

 

code - technical poetry

"having the means to develop ideas into web applications is awesome!"

hobbies -

"time to put away the computer and get a little dirty."

design - digital art

"I have always been passionate about creating art."

info -

"Father, soldier, artist, developer, foodie, coffee enthusiast, carpenter, mma fan..."

site specs

  • HTML5 / CSS3
  • Multiple backgrounds
  • Responsive layout
  • {less}
  • JavaScipt/jQuery
  • PHP
  • non-minimized code - so you could look around easily-

contact -

djhelfrich@gmail.com

502.420.8947

P.O. Box 99451 Louisville, KY 40291
 
 

[If you're absent during my struggle, don't expect to be present during my success.]

-Will Smith quotethattalk.tumblr.com
 

Why coding?

Coding reminds me of carpentry, transforming creative visions into a usable product for the client to utilize.

My approach to learning web development was to start at designing then progress to the server. The end goal is to offer something that I haven't seen yet an individual that understands the complete process of developing a digital solution.

 
Specialize

Front-end development utilizing Graphic Design, HTML, CSS, and JavaScript to sculpt intriguing user interfaces.

 
Currently

Enhancing my proficiency in server side languages:

  • PHP -> cakePHP
  • C# -> MVC3
 
Future

Excited to begin developing with:

  • iOS Development
  • Developing Web Services SOAP/RESTful
  • Database Design
 
Improve

Implement ways to excel:

  • Separate code and data
  • Refactor
  • OOP
  • DRY
 

[I have no special talent. I am only passionately curious.]

- Albert Einstein Brainy Quote
 

got pixels?

I was always interested in art, from childhood doodles to black & white photography in High School armed with a Pentax K-1000 SLR 35mm.

I was introduced to Digital Art in 2003 with Photoshop Elements using a Wacom tablet (I still own). I was instantly addicted and six months later was enrolled in college for multimedia.

Photoshop is the go to tool for the graphic workload I encounter. My favorite software is Illustrator creating line art using the pen tool. No matter the medium when I am designing everything else just fades away.

Designed graphic solutions for a diversity of products:

  • Websites
  • Class 1 Baja Race Car
  • T-shirts
  • Paper products
    • Business Cards
    • Brochures
    • Mailers
    • Invoices
    • Maps
  • 3ft x 4ft canvas
  • Tattoos

design

 

"To expect that a website will look identical in Safari on an iPad and in IE6 on a PC is crazy."

-Andy Clarke .Net CSS Essentials pg. 123
 

info

Who I am

Father, soldier, artist, developer, foodie, beach bun, coffee enthusiast, carpenter, mixed martial artist, music lover, vaporer, fisherman, hunter, nomad, jock, geek, and gamer.

I enjoy a multitude of activities from being laid back with a captivating book paired with a glass of wine or staying up all night to learn a new development technology. I am a passionate individual putting forth great attention and effort into the activities I participate in.

Travels

I have lived in several states as far north as Wisconsin and as far south as Florida. When I think of home the east coast of South Carolina always comes to mind. The low country has always held a special place in my heart.

Recon

Being an artist and an interactive developer I enjoy observing the actions of others going about daily activities. I use these observations to better understand the users that interact with the interfaces I develop.

Execution

Referred to as a human swiss army knife having a multitude of skills and the ability to apply existing thought patterns to new situations. From field stripping a weapon to developing a website there needs to be a standard operating procedure to accomplish the end result effectively.

Favorite
  • Outdoor - Fishing
  • Cooking - Charcoal Grill
  • Food - Sushi
  • Coffee - Pour over
  • Tea - Jasmine Green Loose Leaf
  • Author - Terry Goodkind
  • Movie - Pulp Fiction
  • E-juice - Truth Serum
  • Sport - MMA
  • Nature - Beach
  • Transformer - Bumblebee
  • Watchmen - Rorschach
 

[The adventures I enjoy when not sitting behind a computer.]

Favorite Place - Coffee shop, when there isn't a beach in sight
 

Outdoors, Shooting, & Gardening

Drawing, Sketching, & Doodles

Cooking, Beverages, & Eating

 

[I must not fear. Fear is the mind-killer. Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. I will face my fear. I will permit it to pass over me and through me. And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. Only I will remain.]

Dune, Bene Gesserit Litany Against Fear
 
 

Creative process...

inspiration

step 1b:

style

Now I need to complete my vision by setting how the interface will appear to my users, the possibilities are endless. After coming up with an idea of my own I turn my gaze to other sources to inspire me to take my idea even further.

  • Books
  • Websites
  • Development magazines
  • Mobile applications
  • Movies / Anime

step 1:

foundation

When starting a new project I like to determine the message the site will convey to the users, in this case it is various information about me. Next I determine the technology that will power the application and how I want to handle browser compatibility.

This particular build is a front-end mock up of the MVC3 application that I will be developing in the near future, then expanded to iOS application.

Technology Specs:

  • HTML5 / CSS3
  • Multiple backgrounds
  • Responsive layout
  • {less}
  • JavaScipt/jQuery
  • PHP
  • non-minimized code - so you could look around easily-

Since I am using Twitter's framework for the Responsive layout I will need to write some additional CSS for older browsers.

step 2:

Now that the vision of what I want to create is solidified, it is time map it all out this will help keep the ugly head of scope creep from coming around and saves countless hours of redesigning the interface as the project moves forward.

wireframing

This part of the process outlines how the user will request data and where I will present it to them. I decided to go with a non traditional navigation scheme.

sketches

I have found that sketching out ideas helps kick start the creative process having the fluidity of erasing and starting over is a great time saver. What I had in mind for this site at the beginning was completely different and boring I had seen several sites laid out the same way. So starting from scratch and sketching something new only took a few minutes rather than throwing away hours perfecting every detail in photoshop.

wireframing sketches
wireframing

step 3:

I wanted to use the same primary color #ffff00 as I also used for pixelmauler but in a different way. Next I ayout all my notes, drawings, and other inspirations beside me. It is now time to create the assets when combined will generate the user interface.

designing

Utilizing an array of Photoshop brushes, photos, and stock art at my disposal to craft the graphic elements for this build. Before implementing the image in to the containg html tag I fille the site with placeholder text gathered from slipsum. The site contains quotes from Samuel L. Jackson's movie career and offers the professional approved Lipsum Lorem.

step 4:

Code

This where I am the fastest first order of business is to lay a solid HTMl structure the add in the CSS for styling. After I validate the HTML and CSS with W3C validator I will add in the interactions I came up with in step one.

Now it is all fun from here on out with writing the JavaScript. I have decided that there will be only two JS libraries I will be using Modernizr and jQuery.

Feedback / Testing

This where I grab a variety of friends, developers, and family to explore my latest hatched creative embryo. At this point I am looking for constructive opinions not short answers. The best feedback ever is I am sitting with the user and we go through the application's user experience together.

Deliver

Tell everyone about it, listen for more feedback and select the right course of action.

The creative embryo that started out as a glimmer in my eye has now moved on to be downloaded on your digital device. On to the next project...

wireframing
 
 

[If one advances confidently in the direction of one's dreams, and endeavors to live the life which one has imagined, one will meet with a success unexpected in common hours.]

Henry David Thoreau