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  • Website dos and don'ts

    Hello, all,
    I just read through the whole thread of Website Do's and Don't's which is a bit old, but offered up some excellent tips on website design for photographers. I'm about to redo my site, which is here Home - Ariana's Art. If anybody checks it out, feedback is greatly appreciated, especially before and after. (Be gentle with me, I'm entirely self-taught!)

    This thread was dedicated almost exclusively to photographers for weddings, events, etc. I would like to know - what about landscape and nature photographers? There are plenty of us out there, but business-wise, it's much different from the above-mentioned. Can any of you established, successful pros give us newbies some tips for our websites?

    Thanks!
    Cheers!
    - Ariana
    Nikon D7000 with AF-S Nikkor 18-55 mm and Nikkor 70-300 mm, plus extension tubes. What more could a girl want?

  • #2
    My take on the site....
    The repeating BG image needs to go....
    Steve
    the Photographic Academy.com
    SharpShooter Industries
    My 500px, My Flickr, My Blog

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    • #3
      don't use flash,,,
      Nikon D7000:18-105mm VR Kit, Nikkor 35-70mm 2.8AF, Nikkor 50mm f/1.8d AF, Sigma 150-500mm f/5-6.3 AF, SB600
      Web Design of Palm Beach
      Photo Blog
      Become a Fan on Facebook

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      • #4
        Originally posted by sk66 View Post
        My take on the site....
        The repeating BG image needs to go....
        +1
        Really not feeling that background.

        Aside from that, what are you trying to accomplish with your site? Are you just trying to share your photos, or are you trying to sell your work?
        I'm not really familiar with nature/landscape sites, so I'm afraid I'm not much help there. But the organization of the site is not really working for me. Having the navigation bar bunched in the left hand corner is a little awkward, as opposed to the standard straight across bar.
        Also, have so many pages in the navigation bar is a little overwhelming. If I was just visiting, there is no way I'd click on all those pages. Is there anyway you can condense it down a bit? Perhaps in your navigation bar have a Home, About Me, Portfolio, and Contact page. And then use a drop down menu under your portfolio page so the user can navigate to a specific gallery.
        Nikon D7100, Nikon D7000, 50mm f/1.4, 28-75mm f/2.8, 90mm f/2.8 macro, 80-200mm f/2.8, 85mm f/1.8 (2) SB600
        My Website
        My 500px
        Facebook

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        • #5
          +1 on what everybody has mentioned so far.

          Whilst I did see that you are selling prints of your work (I saw the prices button under your photo), the website is just too cluttered even in it's simple lay out. How much more when you do have more content in it?

          Also, yes, don't use flash (not strobe flash but Adobe flash hehe).

          You really don't have enough content in there and I don't mean images but words. If you want people to be able to find you in google, you need content as in words. Write somethign about yourself, etc, anything that will increase search functionality with your site.
          My FLICKR

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          • #6
            If your heart is set on keeping the repeating background, it could work a little better if the pattern was seamless. I know GIMP has a filter to create a seamless image. I'd guess there are Photoshop tutorials that would do the same thing. Once you build the seamless tiled image, I'd use a little CSS to fix it in place and let the page content scroll over it.

            I'd say if you don't have three or more sub-categories, then I wouldn't bother to branch out as you've done in your landscape section.

            The flash gallery/lightbox scenario could probably be done using an HTML/CSS/scripting template which would be more cross-platform compatible (nobody with an iPad/iPod/iPhone can use your website now).
            My flickr

            Nikon D5000 / Nikon 35mm f/1.8 AF-S lens / Nissin DI-866ii flash

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            • #7
              Unless you've got money to spend on custom development, find a nice Wordpress template and run with that. Don't try to do it yourself unless you're a pro graphics/web designer!

              Have a look at some of these templates, and pick one.
              35 Best Wordpress Photography Website Templates - tripwire magazine

              Install Wordpress and the template and add your content & images. Like others said, limit yourself to 3 or 4 categories and only post your best photos. Potential customers won't look at 300 images.

              Make sure your footer is properly placed. Your current footer, Facebook links etc are behind some of your images.

              -M
              - 4umfreak

              4u2c.it a simple, fun and free Url shortener with publishing to Facebook and Twitter.
              My 365 Photo Project I'm taking a photo every day for a year.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by 4umfreak View Post
                Unless you've got money to spend on custom development, find a nice Wordpress template and run with that. Don't try to do it yourself unless you're a pro graphics/web designer!

                Have a look at some of these templates, and pick one.
                35 Best Wordpress Photography Website Templates - tripwire magazine

                Install Wordpress and the template and add your content & images. Like others said, limit yourself to 3 or 4 categories and only post your best photos. Potential customers won't look at 300 images.

                Make sure your footer is properly placed. Your current footer, Facebook links etc are behind some of your images.

                -M
                Great link there, and good prices. I just don't like how wordpress charges for certain features vs. google/blogspot doesn't, you think I could get something like these layouts


                WordPress - Photorific - Photography WordPress Theme | ThemeForest
                WordPress - King Size - fullscreen background WordPress theme | ThemeForest

                for blogger?
                Website | Facebook Fanpage | Facebook | Twitter | Flickr | Model Mayhem

                Canon; 24-70 2.8L, 50 1.4, Tamron 70-200 2.8, 6D, 550D/T2i, 20D, and XSi.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by ChrisAdval View Post
                  Great link there, and good prices. I just don't like how wordpress charges for certain features vs. google/blogspot doesn't, you think I could get something like these layouts


                  WordPress - Photorific - Photography WordPress Theme | ThemeForest
                  WordPress - King Size - fullscreen background WordPress theme | ThemeForest

                  for blogger?
                  wordpress only charges if you host at wordpress.com, self host it and it's free open source, unless you purchase a theme as mentioned...not to mention you'll get much better search engine results with wordpress than blogspot / blogger.com
                  Nikon D7000:18-105mm VR Kit, Nikkor 35-70mm 2.8AF, Nikkor 50mm f/1.8d AF, Sigma 150-500mm f/5-6.3 AF, SB600
                  Web Design of Palm Beach
                  Photo Blog
                  Become a Fan on Facebook

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Wow, this is good information. Thanks for taking the time to post! I will definitely look into Wordpress. Right now I am hosted at websitebuilderpro.com. They are very easy to use, which is important because I'm clueless with this stuff. The Wordpress themes look so awesome, though, I'm considering a change. In the meantime, I'll check over my site and fix those admin items mentioned.

                    The only thing about the Wordpress themes is that their examples are so awesome, and the photos shown are amazing! I don't think my photography is there yet. I'll look pretty shabby by comparison!

                    Thanks again, everyone! The DPS community ROCKS!
                    Cheers!
                    - Ariana
                    Nikon D7000 with AF-S Nikkor 18-55 mm and Nikkor 70-300 mm, plus extension tubes. What more could a girl want?

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Wordpress is win

                      Just a quick look, haven't clicked or read anything :P I'd say ditch the background too widen the middle box of content and change the black background to something like... #333 grey, it might just be me, but I'm finding straight black harsh and horrible at the moment, even my work documents aren't in black text :P just very very dark grey :P

                      Give this a read too:
                      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Color_theory
                      Art: www.jamieorourke.co.uk
                      Work: www.jamieorourkephotography.co.uk
                      Sony a200 Sony a580, Canon 500D, Canon 550D, Canon 600D, Canon 600D

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                      • #12
                        I found a good layout for free but it's actually extremely confusing and I know a good bit about web design and manipulating code a bit. - Portfolio ... for some reason I can't seem to figure out on how to add photos to the slides.
                        Website | Facebook Fanpage | Facebook | Twitter | Flickr | Model Mayhem

                        Canon; 24-70 2.8L, 50 1.4, Tamron 70-200 2.8, 6D, 550D/T2i, 20D, and XSi.

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                        • #13
                          Normally have to add them as a custom field at the bottom of the post
                          Art: www.jamieorourke.co.uk
                          Work: www.jamieorourkephotography.co.uk
                          Sony a200 Sony a580, Canon 500D, Canon 550D, Canon 600D, Canon 600D

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                          • #14
                            That is a great list of WP themes for photo sites!

                            My 2 cents. NO FLASH and NO MUSIC!!!!

                            For some reason many photographers use both and they are unbelievably annoying!
                            The Garage Blog
                            Bigg Shooter
                            Flickr
                            Facebook

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                            • #15
                              Wow, this is great stuff, everybody. Thank you for your time!

                              I got rid of the wallpaper (yeah, it was way too "busy") and figured out how to make it wider. I'm wondering, though, what happens when people with smaller screens take a look? That's why I kept it at 780. But I think most people have a wider screen now.

                              I also had a good hard look at the black background. I know there are pros and cons either way, but the photos just pop with the black. I'm going to work with it a little and decide later. It's a template service, but there's quite a bit of latitude with what can be done.

                              Now if I can only find more time to work on it .....

                              By the way, what is "flash"? Everybody keeps saying don't use it, but I don't even know what it is!
                              Cheers!
                              - Ariana
                              Nikon D7000 with AF-S Nikkor 18-55 mm and Nikkor 70-300 mm, plus extension tubes. What more could a girl want?

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