About me

JP, with orange hair Although I’ve lived many places (New York, Iowa, Pennsylvania, and Switzerland) I consider San Diego to be my home.

In addition to web development, my interests include music and photography. I started playing piano around the age of 5, but fell in love with the synthesizer in my late teens. I’ve been making electronic music ever since. As for photography, all the photos on this site are examples of my work.

For over 5 years, I produced and recorded a podcast with 4 (and sometimes 5) other guys. Topics ranged from social issues to movies, music, and politics.

I have been designing and building websites since 1996. I’ve enjoyed watching the web grow and change, and seeing how it’s affected all our lives so much since then.

I have worked a variety of jobs, from butcher, to sales, to a licensed EMT for a private ambulance company. I’ve worked in the music industry and the tech industry, and even art director and lead programmer for a game company. In addition to web design, I spent about 10 years doing print design and working for a design house / service bureau. In the late 90’s, I started my own design company, Jp Arts, which was focused on helping small businesses with print and web presences, as well as some larger clients such as the San Diego Soccers and 92.5 The Flash – a San Diego alternative radio station in the 90’s. Although I don’t have the business any more, I still use this website as a showcase for my work and code experiments.

Most recently, I worked as interaction designer for Illumina, a company that makes genetic sequencers for research and diagnostics.

All these experiences have given me a richer understanding of people and their diverse perspectives and needs.

My passion is for making something that’s a great user experience. I try to always follow these rules.

About this website

I set a challenge for myself when making this site: no JavaScript. I wanted to see if I could create a modern site without relying on JavaScript for layout and functionality. Everything is just pure CSS, from the sticky navigation and section headers on the about page, to the responsive mobile menu, and even the pong graphics on the portfolio page. The one exception is the landing page: the image rotation is handled with JavaScript — for now.

Its not that I hate JavaScript. I just feel that we, as frontend designers and developers, tend to rely on it too much. Instead of reaching for JS to solve all problems, we need to see if there are built-in methods that are more efficient.

While I strive to make websites accessible, for this site I made a conscious decision to only support modern browsers that have been released in the past 5 years. That means no support for IE — which even Microsoft has dropped support for. I'm using CSS Custom Properties (CSS Variables) extensively, in addition to CSS Grids, Flexbox, and the awesome new position: sticky property.

However, this isn’t the 90’s when we all had 2 different versions of a website, one for Netscape and one for Internet Explorer. If viewed in IE, this site will display and work… it just won’t be as pretty.

And that’s ok. It’s important to remember that websites can look different on different browsers, as long as they are functional and the user is able to navigate successfully.

To put it another way... Do websites need to look exactly the same in every browser?