In March 2010 we were contacted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and informed they were in the process of redesigning their website. After some discussion we were asked to assist with some of the design and flash work. Of course we thought this was the coolest opportunity ever.
I remember touring the FBI headquarters years ago (probably around 1994) on a family trip to Washington D.C. Ever since, I’ve been fascinated by the work and achievements of the FBI. Being asked to help with the web site was a great honor.
The project was divided into three main parts: (1) The History of the FBI; (2) Fun & Games; and (3) the Kids Pages. Each of these sections include sub-pages and content developed in conjunction with the main pages.
The History page was one of the most exciting and interesting components of the project. The goal was to create an environment that highlights an important event in the FBI’s history. The guys at the Bureau wanted to feature the Biograph Theater in the 1930’s where the FBI took out john Dillinger, one of the best know gangsters of all time, right outside the theater.
We started by collecting images, making sketches, and developing ideas that would represent this important time in history. After a couple rounds of failing to hit the mark, we came up with a layout that fits with the desired historical theme.
FBI - History Step 1 - Initial colors and shapes
FBI - History Step 2 - Adding textures and general layout elements
FBI - History Step 3 - Cropping and additional lighting and textures added
FBI - History Step 4 - Final textures and tones added. finilizing position of elements.
After the environment was fully developed, we produced a series of posters representing the different sections linked to the History page. Each poster was enlarged, enabling the visitor to roll over each element while the poster “pops out,” highlighting the linked section.
FBI History Poster - History of the 10 Most Wanted
FBI History Poster - A Short History of the FBI
FBI History Poster - Directors Then and Now
FBI History Poster - FBI Headquarters
FBI History Poster - Seal and Motto
FBI History Poster - Historic Records
FBI History Poster - Field Office Histories
FBI History Poster - Hall of Honor
Our goal for the historical time-line was to create an interactive element that would allow visitors to access selections without taking them away from the original page. The guys from the FBI recommended a virtual car or truck-type element that would move across the screen, with the back of the vehicle containing a time-line with clickable options.
The car drives across the screen when you click the timeline link on the side of it
So check out the site History of the FBI and give us your feedback. In the next post we’ll highlight the FBI history theater.