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ARLENE GOLANT CREATIVE GROUP

DESIGN AND TECHNOLOGY IN SERVICE OF YOUR GOALS

Web | Print | Motion | Mobile

AGCG is a group of talented collaborators, who design and develop online and offline communication. We've been delivering digital distinction since 1995.

If you or your business has already entered the online fast lane, we'll help you maintain and refine your message. If you're just stepping into the information maelstrom, we can guide you through the decisionmaking that will help you build just what you need now, while preparing for the future.

User-centered design is critical to the success of an experience, but we practice "client-focused" work also, by balancing your business goals with usability, engaging experience, and brand awareness.

We enjoy good design, we're excited by new technologies, and we're interested in content from a wide variety of industries and genres.

As technological trends become traditions, and the web takes its place in the toolkit of every business, it's tempting to launch a site, open a Twitter account and sit back. It can work for a while, but it's wiser to approach it all as continuously evolving opportunities for change.

We all need a different attitude than ever before, and a light-on-our-feet approach to communication channels. The medium truly is the message.

 

 



ABOUT THE PHOTOS: If you close the menu bar, you can navigate through the full frame photographs. There are some excellent metaphors about identity, teamwork, agility etc. But really, I just like them. And I love the Supersized - Fullscreen Slideshow Plugin by Sam Dunn.

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The Team Approach

A Group Becomes a Team

It's official, we're a group. Same domain since 1994, www.golant.com, but you can think of us as AGCG.
In addition to our core group, we bring in specialists as projects require. Over the years each of us has worked with wonderful writers, programmers, instructional designers, videographers and editors. It's easier than ever to find talent on a per project basis.We form flexible, efficient teams tailored specifically to fit each project. Our overhead is lower and your business benefits. We love being able to bring old friends and new people together on a project. It keeps the work and the process fresh. It's a model that's been working for over ten years

Our Core Team

  • Arlene Golant Creative Group

    Arlene Creative Director/Designer

    Ever since she realized the Yankees weren't calling her up to play first base, Arlene dedicated herself to visual, information and interaction design. As Art Director / Creative Director at LivePlanet, IEC and Unit 643 she was responsible for creating and implementing visual and interactive standards companywide. Projects on which she served won numerous national design awards, including New Media InVision (in the good old days) for "Ethics: Navigating the Grey," produced for PWC and, more recently, the LA Weekly Restaurant Website of the Year for the inaugural STREET website. The Yankees? They're doing ok too.

  • MJ Thatcher, AGCG

    MJ Client Services

    Our Client Management specialist, MJ comes in and solves all our difficult issues by making clients fall for her. In her spare time, she practices Co-Active Coaching. Coincidence? We think not. MJ has worked as a producer and project manager in a variety of media including TV Commercials, industrial films, web and broadcast graphics and online learning solutions. In any media environment she helps creative teams meet and exceed client expectations, on time and within budget.

  • Alan Olifson, Arlene Golant Creative Group

    Alan Lead Developer

    Alan provides the late night heroics every team needs. He too, knows just what to bring together for each project: Database Engineer...? Check. C#, .Net or Javascript Master...? Check. Pizza guy...? Oh yes.
    Alan has been working in all areas of development for over 12 years. His gigs include managing Teleflora's e-commerce platform, Gamefly's customer experience, and the LivePlanet entertainment properties' web dimension.

The Work

A FLEXIBLE PROCESS

Our design and development process has evolved over time to accommodate projects of different sizes, types, budgets and schedules. The basic framework of the process remains the same, but the size of the team and the length of time we spend in each phase is flexible. Here's a very brief outline.

Research, Discovery & Planning

Through conversations, interviews and questionnaires, we gain an understanding of your goals, key messages, challenges and differentiators. The results of this phase provide the framework that allows us to make decisions throughout the project and keep both teams focused on the same target.

Planning

We now transition from identifying problems to exploring solutions. The major deliverables in this stage are a detailed content outline, wireframe visualizations of the site structure, and the Creative Presentation which introduces several possible visual directions from which our final approach is chosen.

Development

Following the approval of the content, structure and visual approach, we begin the content creation and programming. Content is delivered by the client and/or created by the teams. Photos, video, links and other assets are delivered and prepared for use. Programmers are setting up frameworks and coding.

Review & Testing

The final preparation mode where we are polishing content and design elements, testing interactivity and features in the production environment prior to the move to a permanent web server. Along with our clients we review the site for accuracy and opportunity for small areas of improvement. Any changes or additions are documented for discussion in terms of their budget or schedule implications. Agreed upon changes are made and the site is deployed to it's final server and made ready for the public. Testing continues on the web server to a broader audience.

Launch

After the party, we deliver our source files and documentation to our client. Any training required to familiarize their team with the controls of the site happens now. We remain available to answer questions and help with initial site launch.


There is, of course, so much more to the process and our relationship. We look forward to discussing your project and how we can tailor our experience to meet your needs.

WEB

Feasibility | Viability | Usability

  • Susan Feniger
    Susan Feniger's STREET
    Susan Feniger

LOGOS

PRINT

DEMOS & DISKS

Presentations, animations, film titles...

Project Notes

Details and thoughts about the work

All of our projects involve thinking, planning, challenges and trade-offs that may not be apparent by looking at the few screenshots we post in the portfolio section. This area gives us a place to tell you a little more about particular projects, process, problems and solutions.

  • MOVING GROWINGGREAT NUTRITION TRAINING ONLINE

    GrowingGreat is a nutrition education organization dedicated to inspiring children to make healthier eating choices. Through their pay it forward model, students enjoy classroom nutrition lessons, garden plantings and farm-to-school tastings, all presented by trained volunteers and teachers. GG provides volunteer docents everything they need to go into classrooms and not only successfully teach a nutrition lesson, but to empower kids to choose wisely in the face of social pressures, advertising ploys and family habits.

    Until 2011, docent training had taken place in person at GG's location in Manhattan Beach, CA. As their nutrition program grew and was adopted in other school systems, it became apparent they needed a more scalable approach.

    OUR GOAL: to provide GrowingGreat the guidance and expertise to put their docent training online, while maintaining the very personal, non-judgemental GrowingGreat approach. A first time volunteer docent should, after going through the lessons, understand the nutritional material as well as how to handle the classroom, the optional food samples, and any dietary restrictions or allergies. Returning docents could refresh their knowledge of each lesson, download materials and share their experiences and best practices.

    + Read more...

MOVING GROWINGGREAT NUTRITION TRAINING ONLINE

GrowingGreat is a nutrition education organization dedicated to inspiring children to make healthier eating choices. Through their pay it forward model, students enjoy classroom nutrition lessons, garden plantings and farm-to-school tastings, all presented by trained volunteers and teachers. GG provides volunteer docents everything they need to go into classrooms and not only successfully teach a nutrition lesson, but to empower kids to choose wisely in the face of social pressures, advertising ploys and family habits.

Until 2011, docent training had taken place in person at GG's location in Manhattan Beach, CA. As their nutrition program grew and was adopted in other school systems, it became apparent they needed a more scalable approach.

OUR GOALS: to provide GrowingGreat the guidance and expertise to put their docent training online, while maintaining the very personal, non-judgemental GrowingGreat approach. A first time volunteer docent should, after going through the lessons, understand the nutritional material as well as how to handle the classroom, the optional food samples, and any dietary restrictions or allergies. Returning docents could refresh their knowledge of each lesson, download materials and share their experiences and best practices.

THE ESTIMATE: Generally, when we prepare proposals, we include everything from discovery through development, testing and delivery. We include assumptions and goals and provide an estimated range of costs and fees. Since GrowingGreat needed an accurate and specific number for their Board of Directors, we proposed a separate Analysis and Design phase with it's own discrete estimate. At the end of this period we would be able to provide a detailed budget and timeline. Growing Great agreed and we proceeded to delve into content, learning objectives, existing brand, audience and technological requirements. We delivered a Content Outline, Wireframes, Tech Specs and an approved Visual Design and all of these could be applied to the development of the final product. The groundwork was laid for a running start.

TRADEOFFS: We found several ways to reduce costs. Instead of actors, we would use volunteers. GG was willing to accept the tradeoff, believing whatever was lacking in performance would be acceptable for this round. We also decided to shoot the training video at one of GrowingGreat's schools over the summer, and reduce the production to two long days (rather than three). Our videographer was helpful in providing minimal equipment needed for the shoot while maintaining a high standard of quality. We replaced a custom quiz with a Flash template we'd used in the past and found several other ways to reduce the bottom line of the development phase. It worked! We arrived at a reasonable number, an agressive but acceptable schedule, a process and a design. We were ready.

OUR TEAM
Project Manager
Creative Director/Designer
Lead Developer
Instructional Design Consultant
Writer
Video Team (Production and Editing)

THE RESULT: We created a complete training site with an Expression Engine CMS. The video is served via Amazon Web Services and need only be linked. We made it extremely easy for anyone at GrowingGreat to post a new lesson including video, documents for download and text.
We recommend docents go through each section of the lessons in the order we present them, but they are free to explore on their own or to return for a refresher. The materials that accompany each lesson are accessible from the Docent Library at any time, and Docents are encouraged to share their experiences, best practices and lessons learned in the Docent Community Forum. The training includes:

Docent Orientation: A message from the founders, general on-boarding lessons. An overview of the courseware and downloadable packets (for docents, teachers and parents). Explicit information regarding the required approach to children's allergies and dietary restrictions. Information about food handling and procuring the optional food samples.

Lessons: Each of the five yearly lessons include:

Introduction: Learning objectives for the kids, general scope of the lesson and GrowingGreat's philosophy of non-judgemental teaching.

Nutrition 101: Background information needed to teach the particular lesson, including recommended reading, checklists, handouts etc.

In The Classroom: The actual lesson performed on video as if the docent were in a classroom interacting with children, handling props, activities etc.

Food Samples: Providing food samples is an option for any school. Sometimes they are provided by donors, or the schools, or PTA. They are used to illustrate the core principles of each lesson (for example: whole grain foods, reading food labels, advertising, low fat foods). Our docent spokesperson reinforces the food handling techniques and general approach to food samples. Specific instructions are provided in a pdf in the lesson packet.

Review and Quiz: Key points of the lesson are reviewed and a brief quiz is provided to allow the docent to test his or her knowledge of the material.


Docent Resources:
Resource Library
FAQ
Docent Community Forum

UPDATE: The launch of GrowingGreat's Online model was a beta test involving all of the docents who had previously participated in face-to-face training, plus a few brand new volunteers. We received overwhelmingly good reviews, with a few very helpful comments that will be considered and integrated in the next version.

We are now working on the second year of lessons and the GrowingGreat Garden program. If you would like to consider bringing nutrition training into your child's school, contact GrowingGreat.org for more information and a demonstration

Elements of design

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Elements of design

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June 20, 2011 | Posted by: Admin | Category

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Elements of design

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June 20, 2011 | Posted by: Admin | Category

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GrowingGreat Online Nutrition Training

35

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Elements of design

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June 20, 2011 | Posted by: Admin | 15 Comments

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Contact AGCG

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LOS ANGELES

Text, tweet, or send a message through Words With Friends; we're happy to answer questions, talk about your upcoming project or just catch up.

Contact details

Tel: 321.692.0200
Cell: 213.948.7775
E-mail: answers@golant.com

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