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Debbiee 14 136 6 United Kingdom
30 Jul 2006 1:21PM
Hi

I am in the process of building a website and just looking for a bit of advice, I have put together a mock website (the pictures on it wil not be the ones I'm displaying in my finished website and I am going to buy a domain name so the web address will change) but am in the process of converting the images I want to use from Raw to jpeg and with thousands to trail threw its a slow process. So just using pictures of my daughter that I had already stored on my computer I put together a mock one.

I would really appreciate it if anyone could give me advice on my website i.e what I need to add in, if the formats ok etc etc, as to me it seems to be lacking something, but as I'm no web designer don't really know what to add. I have 20mb of space and so far what is up there takes about 10mb

The page is

www.debbie3.karoo.net

any advice would be gratefully appreciated

Thanks Debbie
andart 19 538 United Kingdom
30 Jul 2006 2:20PM
Hi Debbie,
I had a quick look at your site and I was not sure what the purpose of the site was - is it to showcase your work and get comissions? or to sell prints? or sell stock images?

I think once you have decided the purpose then you will have more of an idea as to what to add.

I think you will need to say more about yourself and the type of photography you cover and where you are based if you are looking for work.

Add captions and filenames (in the form of IPTC comments) to your pictures and either show them below the pic or when the mouse is on a picture if you are trying to sell prints or stock images.

you could also break-up the pictures into groups (weddings, events, product shots, landscapes etc etc) to avoid having to page through lots of thumbnails till you find some of interest.

dont forget to add a 'home' link on each page

dont forget to add loads of metadata and register with some search engines or no one will find your site.

swapping links with other sites is also a good way of generating trafic.

I'd tell you to look at my site (www.andart.co.uk) but it is well out of date and in need of an overhall!

If you want an easy way of creating and maintaining your website you could try downloading Jalbum - its free and has lots of options built in.
HTH
Andy
Debbiee 14 136 6 United Kingdom
30 Jul 2006 8:04PM
Thanks Andy that has been really helpful, I think I needed a kick to get me thinking more about it as my mind was just blank (happens to much lol).

What I am mainly after is a website to show my images to potential clients i.e I want to start sending off stock images to magazines etc, and in my submission I wanted to include a business card with a web address.
But also something I never thought of was trying to drum up a bit of business with the site alone, this would be an added bonus if I ever managed to get a sale from the site and something I may as well have running as I have a site.

thank you again
Debbie
philipr 15 392
30 Jul 2006 8:31PM
Hi Debbie

If you do a search on the forums for "new website" or maybe just website you will find people often ask for feedback on their bnew websites and the feedback they get can be very useful for deciding on how you go about your design.

A few very important points that seem to reoccur that I agree with are

1.Speed - your site needs to load fast or the user will leave very quickly
2. Ease of use in navigation - some poeple get too flashy with their site and if its not simple (like me) im outta there very quickly as are most people.
3. Speed - worth mentioning again cos its so important
4.sometimes less is more - simple clean design looks good and you dont need too much info there - be concise. In general most people (except maybe some photographers) dont care what camera you used, which filters or what aperature etc.If you do provide anything like this - hide it and ake it optional. You dont need hundreds and hundreds of pics - a well choosen showcase is better to show your talents than the fact that you have 30000 pictures - noone will have time to look through alot of photos , if you choose your best they are more likely to be seen if its just a few and make a bigger impact.
5.Speed - really important. Some people say if its not loaded in 5 seconds then they leave.
6 Test in different browsers and on different machines as it will looks different in each.What looks good in IE on your PC may look terrible in Netscape, Firefox or on a MAC.

Good luck and enjoy
Phil
Debbiee 14 136 6 United Kingdom
30 Jul 2006 11:08PM
Thanks' glad I found this site you lot are invaluable Smile)

I think I've got an idea of what I'm going to do with it now (whether it works or not is another question)

and I'll make sure its fast lol

Debbie
exclusive 16 579 United Kingdom
31 Jul 2006 10:23AM
what are you using to build the website?

I used frontpage for mine, it comes free with most computers nowadays.

I think that you have to put different photos into different catergories/galleries to make it quicker to navigate.

also i'd only showcase your best work, go for the quality not quantity.

also short captions under the photos, not necesassrily describing them but just where it was shot is enough for me.

a "about me" section is always useful for customers, it doesn't have to be your life history but just a bit about you and what you do.

www.siteground.com do superb hosting, very qucik, not the worlds cheapest but the best.

I had a trouble with getting my site homepage working so posted an email and I got a call back within 2 minutes with a real person who described it all to me.
mikeweeks 16 978 3 England
31 Jul 2006 10:55AM
Debbie,

I started a similar thread myself and got some good help thread .
I have found a number of useful sites since that help with some of the problems.
I was asked to redesign this site by a friend as nobody was visiting his site. After two weeks you can find him in Google - try Dorset Landscape, which is his preferred search term.
One of the major sugestions was to rewrite the site with CSS (cascading style sheets), it is not that difficult and i have just got made a template for the major page type so can move to CSS soon, the links etc do not work as this is just a test bed but you can see that both versions look virtually identical.
Download some other browsers, such as Firefox and Opera so you can see how your site performs outside of internet explorer.
If i can be of any further help please let me know.
Mike
31 Jul 2006 6:54PM
Hi Debbie,

Some nice pics of your daughter on there.

I agree with all the comments made so far. As opposed to designing your own website, there is the option to use a template. My website (www.eye-capture.com) is a Clikpic site. They have a number of styles to choose from and you have full control of the sections to add, etc. It's a great site and although I obviously don't have 100% control, I don't regret doing it this way. There is even the option to sell photos through Paypal. If nothing else and you are set on designing your own site, it's worth looking at the Clikpic website (http://www.clikpic.com/index.cfm?section=sites&mode=featured) because you can browse through all their customers websites to get ideas.

Good luck with it!
Debbiee 14 136 6 United Kingdom
1 Aug 2006 11:25PM
Thanks everyone

Lots of great ideas, and very helpful. I will definitely be looking at some of the albums as I am currently just using frontpage, and with my very basic and limited knowledge they will be better then anything I can create.

as for web hosting I get 20mb of free webspace with my broadband supplier, so I don't really want to be paying for web hosting as of yet, but if I do start to make money from my photography that is definitely something I will look into more.

Thanks again for all the advice

Debbie
TopsyTopping 15 51 United Kingdom
2 Aug 2006 1:23PM
Hi Debbie

i have a clikpic website too and it's well worth it, you can always try it for free for 7 days first.

aphotoasapresent

It's very easy to set up and update, loads of fun!

Topsy Smile
joolsb 16 27.1k 38 Switzerland
2 Aug 2006 1:56PM
I did have a Clikpic site but then lots of people started saying they were switching to Photium. I took out the free one month trial just to see what all the fuss was about and was impressed enough to switch...

Check it out!!
whipspeed 16 4.2k 22 United Kingdom
2 Aug 2006 2:46PM
I've also just set up with Photium & am really impressed with just how easy it is to use. I did get someone to write something for me, but just to much trouble to load each picture.

Sarah's Site

Let me know what you think.

Sarah

PS Jools, your's looks really good.
TopsyTopping 15 51 United Kingdom
3 Aug 2006 11:54AM
A very impressive site, i was with Photium for a month but didn't carry, not sure why. I though that Photium would help me sell my images, but wasn't sure!

Have you sold any Sarah!

Topsy Smile

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