- Selva Lawler
#25 - An Illuminating Glimpse: The New Biopark.org
Certain people accomplish feats in their lives that figuratively become the culmination of a life's work. You need look no further than Don Howard and how SpiritQuest was the culmination of his life's work, his utter devotion to being of service, and his ardent practice of Shamanism.
In building a biopark.org version 2.0, Martin Reaves and I didn't nearly do that. It wound up being a culmination of several months of hard work. Martin deserves all of the credit in making the new SpiritQuest website (in my humble opinion) a real masterpiece.
To be clear, Don Howard was the driving force behind building a new website. Everything has an organic beginning and a natural, inevitable end, and the shelf life of a website is no exception. I received a sizable number of compliments from people that went to the old biopark.org and mentioned to me that they really liked the website. They didn't rave about its sleek design, its easy navigability, or how it rendered nicely on mobile. Rather, they told me that they appreciated the site because it was clear that SpiritQuest is much more into healing and higher consciousness than self-promotion or cheap marketing (which is, of course, undoubtedly true!). There's also something nostalgic about a website that looked like it has been pristinely preserved and frozen in carbonite (in a Star Wars Boba Fett or Mandalorian bounty hunter kind of way) since 1997.
At the same time, Don Howard recognized that the architecture of the site became antiquated, and not in a "the old ways are best" manner. There were many links and entire pages that kept breaking down or were permanently broken. There was an overwhelming amount of information, really too much for the vast majority of people, especially people who came to the site for the first time trying to find out what SpiritQuest was all about. Our best assets - resources such as video documentaries from Aubrey Marcus, podcasts highlighting SpiritQuest's work, or professional photos of the Sanctuary from remarkably talented SpiritQuest alums like Pierre, Jen, or Apollo - were nowhere to be found. Don Howard was adamant that the sun had set on biopark.org version 1.0 and that a new site was necessary. When the Maestro tells you to do something, you do it!
Martin and my mission was to maintain the look, feel, and integrity of the old site and SpiritQuest while defrosting the carbonite and presenting information in an easily digestible manner. That can be a delicate balance, and I'll leave it to you whether we achieved that or not. Our hope is that you would visit the current site and definitively say that it provides an illuminating glimpse as to the essence of SpiritQuest.
Website building is a real art, and Martin has a remarkably high level of craft. Martin has a brilliant eye for design and his ability to take jumbled concepts and organize them into a clean, sophisticated web layout is next level. Additionally, Martin's professionalism, thoroughness, and friendliness (he is one of the nicest people you will ever meet, a SpiritQuest grad, and a real gem of a human being!) made the whole process incredibly enjoyable. Needless to say, if you or anyone you know has any website needs, I wholeheartedly endorse and recommend him. You can check out Martin's work on his website or email him directly at firstname.lastname@example.org
Our intention is that the website will be a living, breathing creation. If you'd like to submit a testimonial or share a memory of Don Howard in our Memories of Maestro section, we'd be honored to add your contribution to our site.
Martin and I have received overwhelmingly positive feedback thus far, although you're the ultimate arbiter. Let me know what you think! If we deserve a point deduction for the lack of animated jaguars and the removal of the fluorescent blue and neon yellow fonts, that's fair enough. In that sense, it's the end of an era, but we hope it's not the end of an aura, and that the beacon of light that Don Howard radiated will never be extinguished. If the new biopark.org resonates with you, we would be honored if you would share it with others or on social media. All of that furthers our Para El Bien De Todos mission of SpiritQuest, and we sincerely appreciate it!
Much love and gratitude 💚💚💚 -Parker