About

What we do

Bridging Unit spans the digital gaps that you have: solving technical problems; writing code to join things together; communicating your message clearly to them, so that they become more engaged with you; designing ways to go from here to there.

The waters are cold and rough and full of things you can't see. Let us help guide you across. Comfortably.

We excel at absorbing and digesting complexity and reducing it down to its simple essence. Let us make sense of the mess and transform it into something ordered, clear and pleasurable to use.

Based in Ludlow, Shropshire, UK, we've worked with people across the country but also from around the globe, sometimes in other timezones or using different languages. We've been doing this for direct clients and other agencies and creatives since 1999.

Will you be next?

Approach

  1. Listen/Learn
  2. Design/Build
  3. Launch/Refine

You - Us - Them

Considered Distillation

Our initial steps will be to get to know you and engage in thorough research and discovery to uncover needs and identify opportunities. Each project is different after all. From there we'll produce a forward-thinking, structured design that's clear and simple and easy to use.

We collaborate closely with our clients and partners because we believe in developing relationships that foster deeper understanding. This benefits everyone long-term, making collaboration smoother and more enjoyable. We strive for work that above all engages with your customers / users / audience - however you label them - whilst also satisfying you.

It is important for the visual aspects of a product to follow on from the demands of its content. And what that is ought to arise not only from your business priorities, but also from recognition of the needs of your intended audience. If it doesn't provide what they're after, is slow, difficult or awkward, then they will go somewhere else.

So we ask a lot of questions and research things deeply first, until we're satisfied. We'll make suggestions and even challenge assumptions if required. Answers are listened to carefully and results analysed before production starts.

We try to get inside the needs of a project before we present visual designs. It would be presumptuous to do otherwise. We should take time to do things right and understand everything fully before moving forwards. That way production will be more efficient and its result more effective than if we'd just jumped straight in. And this means your users will be happier, and so they'll be more attracted by and engaged with you.

The delivered result should be comfortable and light, but also with room to grow and be able to evolve with you as circumstances change and develop. We don't want to squeeze you into something that doesn't quite fit. So we avoid using off-the-shelf templates, write our own code and, when needed, create our own tools.

Design is the process, not the result. By Design we mean not only the surface visual aspects of a site or app like colour, typography and layout, but also content, structure and user experience, and all the decisions relating to those things. In other words, thinking things through so that they are coherent, consistent, intuitive to use, and work well.

There is no house style. Responses to each project are unique, based on its individual requirements. As the product is bespoke, so our approach varies as we marshall the different tactics and assets available.

Whatever the project, your identity is treated with sensitivity and care, and applied with consistency to ensure seamless continuity. Your message is communicated with clarity in the way and by the means most appropriate.

Our process is iterative and will involve repeated testing and ongoing assessment. We try and reduce things down to what's necessary and no more, thinking things through to create a single, considered and deliberate solution. This generates a final product which is appropriate and effective, its function and use self evident and clear, anticipating needs.

Whether we're working on a small site, a component for some larger system, or designing and building a complex custom digital application, our approach will be the same: at each stage we're focussed on continuous improvement and keep an eye out for opportunities.

At the end of a project we won't disappear off into the sunset, but instead, if required, will provide ongoing support. We believe in continued development, and so evaluate how things have gone, and then set out to assess how we can make things even better. If you've planted an investment then you should tend it, nurture it, and encourage it to grow.

The results speak for themselves: our clients say that we’re professional, rigorous and intelligent, yet friendly and approachable, and that we produce high quality, creative work.

Intelligent and resourceful, a deep understanding of the web and general design makes the process of communication straightforward.”

Chris Hart, Creative Director, Weedoo TV

Capabilities*

Consultancy
Strategy, Research, Planning
Naming and Concept
Art Direction and Editorial
Content Strategy
Heuristic Reviews
Competitive Analysis
Stakeholder Interviews
Content Audits
Analytics and Reports
Maintenance and Support
Design
Brand and Identity
Layout and Typography
Content Modelling
Style Guides and Pattern Libraries
User Interface
Interaction Design
Information Architecture
User Experience
Conversion Optimisation
Data Visualisation
Code
Frontend
Responsive/Adaptive/Mobile First
(X)HTML, CSS
JavaScript, jQuery, AngularJS
PHP, MySQL
Processing, p5.js
Performance Optimisation
ExpressionEngine, Craft, Perch, Shopify
Custom Addons/Plugins
Development
Wireframes/Prototypes
Websites
Content Management Systems
Ecommerce
Applications
Software
APIs
CRM, EDM Integration

* We like learning new things too.

Expertise

10 Years

99 Sites

74 Addons

Bridging Unit are seasoned ExpressionEngine experts. Since 2007 we've worked on dozens of different installations and have been in their Pro Network since 2009, the same year that we also wrote our first addon for the platform.

There's not much we've not handled in our time using the system now, but we're adept at solving problems efficiently and will happily guide you through anything new. Whatever your ExpressionEngine need, we'd be delighted to help.

How can we help you with ExpressionEngine?

Profile

A digital design and development studio run by Aidann Bowley.

Aidann has an eye for design, an ability with code, and a keen strategic sense - a rare combination.

After an academic start he studied Art and Design in Brighton and then History of Modern Art at Manchester with a view to becoming a practicing artist, but then succumbed to the allure and freedom of the internet and world wide web in 1999.

His first steps on the web included SEO when meta tags were still important, and writing ActionScript for Flash at a time before Web Standards had become the norm, when using spacer GIFs to force distances within tables was the accepted way to control layout. At this point Google wasn't the No.1 search engine, Apple were still a struggling niche company, and Facebook didn't even exist, not even at Harvard....

Much of his time now is spent writing or improving code, but a lot of work also deals with concerns arising from content strategy, information architecture and user experience.

At A + B = C he has come back to art again, and combines his interest in graphic design and programming with generative art and structural systems.

Aidann shares his studio and life with Dulcie Fulton. They often collaborate on her design projects at Bluish (and she reciprocates here). He actively aids and abets her letterpress printing at Mostly Flat. And together they co-organize a local, twice monthly, creative get-together called The Eclectic Sofa.