YOU HAVE TO HAVE A VISION!
One day I decided it was time! In reading Art publications, when an artist's work compelled me to want to see more, invariably there was a web site link at the end of the article where I could browse and get a sense of the artist's style, technique, passion. I enjoy reading the bios and artist's statements. I enjoy seeing how different subject matter is handled. And even, ultimately, I enjoy seeing how the web site presents itself. The design is also about the artist.
Since I enjoy design, I wanted to embark on this web site adventure for myself, but felt that doing my blogs, which I enjoy immensely, was within my capacity. But a web site was intimidating. I'm not sure if there's a lot of difference, but when I went to search for information about web site creation, it seemed complicated.
So I looked around and found a business person with good credentials, and decided to work with him to create my site. And work with him is the operative phrase here. Since I had a basic concept of how I wanted the site to look and function, I presented that as a framework. Based on that, we agreed on a price and I proceeded to create an outline of what I wanted the site to contain, and how I wanted it to work.
Building the site
I did not realize the adventure I was undertaking would become so involved. At first, I picked a fancy script font for my name, as the heading for all the pages. But about a third of the way into the design, I found out that the script font did not translate from my iMac to my iPad, showing up differently on the latter. So I reluctantly chose a font that would be standard across all formats: iMac, iPad, iPhone, and other devices.
The new font made my name look different, spatially, physically, so I felt positioning the name differently would work better for the heading, which would carry through all the pages. Once this was decided, it was easier to see how the site would develop: the Narration bar to the right would appear in the same font, capital and small, to my liking.
Thumbnails were the next thing to address. The thumbnails open to larger versions of the art for easy viewing. They should open smooth, have pleasant borders or no borders, and be of similar sizes when opened. I am still trying to understand the sizing of the pictures so they open reasonably similar, even though some are vertical, some horizontal. Pixels, inches....stay tuned.
Organizing all so it reads in a logical order, determining which illustrated art to accompany some of the written pages, and establishing a contact page for the viewer to input their comments or write for more information, such as pricing, was the last but important page to create. And I thought it would be cool to have a slide show on the last page, where the pictures might change for variety and a subtle special effect.
Since I am almost at the end of the process, I can say it is a great learning experience. I wonder if I used a "Create Your Own" service I would be able to handle it. I know for sure, I would need a lot of feedback from the "support team!" My vocabulary has increased and perhaps I will add to this post with some of my new 'technical' terms'. I've also learned that whether you use a do it yourself service, or engage a business to create this for you, you must have 'support' that you can work with, because the web site ultimately represents you, and so you have to feel that what you create does just that.
If you wish to comment on this post, with your own experiences in designing a web site, or having one designed for you, I would enjoy hearing from you.