WEBSITES/DIGITAL PORTFOLIOS



  • MY PORTFOLIO

    I wrote the code for my personal site (portfolio) but I realize I probably need to start thinking about changing over to a more current HTML (mobile-ready) site... I am leaning towards a template site just for ease of updates/edits.

    I find it's good to rethink my site at least once a year... I am sure that I could benefit from trimming a ton of fat from my site and would love to have your feedback on what you see as good, in need of tweaks and what needs to go away. I have already gotten a lot of good feedback through some of the videos offered by SVS.

    If you have a second, I would really appreciate some feedback. Thanks!

    What do you use? Is it working?



  • I have used Drupal for years but it takes quite a bit to implement - recently I used a template for Wordpress though. It was much easier and looks just as good.



  • @andyjewett From your source code, it looks like you use Go Live. Are you planning on staying with this?

    While there are other options, I have used Wordpress as my CMS for a long time for both my various sites and for client sites. I am currently using an older template that I modified from ThemeTrust.com but I think I will be moving to the Divi theme by ElegantThemes.com (I've used that theme on client sites), because of their drag-and-drop layout in the WP admin as well as the other functionality that comes with it (though, ThemeTrust does have a template system similar called "Create", and I know there are others like this). The key with these and with any other template I would choose is to pick one that is "Responsive". This will allow your site to respond to whichever device it is being viewed on (whether desktop, tablet, smartphone, etc.)

    When I get my products & process for fulfillment down, I'll probably go with Shopify.com for my ecom (I will separate out my portfolio & blog site from my ecom site); though, I like how @Lee-White has a solution to allow for image licensing. Not sure if there is an addon to do that with Shopify...



  • @Bob-Crum Yeah Drupal does indeed have a learning curve and work to implement. Though familiar with it, I never used it, but I used Joomla long ago and I remember how complicated it got. I just didn't need that kind of complication for the simpler sites I was doing (including my own). That's why I moved to Wordpress too.



  • @QuietYell @Bob-Crum I am definitely looking for something that are easy to edit/change but something that doesn't hamstring the design so much that it loses all personality.

    Thanks for the suggestions so far I will definitely look more into them... also looking for content feedback.



  • @andyjewett oh Wordpress is totally easy to implement and with a template it is even easier to skin nicely. Divi & other templates like that have no hamstringing of design at all (I know, that's pretty bold of me to say). When you go watch their videos, you'll see what I mean!



  • @andyjewett
    Divi :
    Backend version (from 3 years ago - still works a lot like this and i prefer to do from the backend rather than the front end like they offer as a way to do it now):
    https://youtu.be/YaeWagDRhvE

    Divi new front end design:
    https://youtu.be/1ALjCZkKuUM
    https://youtu.be/FkQuawiGWUw

    Obviously more plus a demo on their site



  • @andyjewett Not trying to push Divi... Just want to give you encouragement that there are solutions that untie your hands and allow you to create a site without having to do html/php/css or any other stuff of the sort



  • @QuietYell nope, that's great... that's what I am looking for. I was a web designer for over 10 years but left it behind 5 years ago and have no desire to do it anymore... just not life-giving to me in any way.

    I will check out those links later, appreciate it!



  • @andyjewett haha I am the same! I did so much web development from 2000-2014. I was miserable. BUT I guess it is good that I went through all of that so I am familiar with stuff now. Still... I really don't like doing web stuff!

    Regarding content, that is something that I am working on too. I just went through some intermediate edits to what I have now until I am able to get to the full redevelop.

    I stripped all of my design & interactive work out of my main portfolio page and also stripped my portfolio page down to the illustration work that represents me most right now (I think). I do have other illustrations still there under an expanded illustration link. I also have the design & interactive there, but they are now combined into one. They may disappear all together this year or next. I still left my logos/branding link separate rather than merged with design & interactive. Haven't been ready to get rid of that one yet. I added my sketches but created a "featured sketches" and a "sketches archive".

    Essentially, I am attempting to create focused places but options to see expansion. Maybe I'll eventually throw everything but the focused page(s) out...

    I'll likely go through more reduction later.

    Anyway, this is speaking more about my site than yours. I suppose my point is that it seems pretty important to keep a focus so ADs don't get distracted and can find what we are about. Basically like what
    Giuseppe Castellano said about portfolios here: http://www.gcastellano.com/arttips/theillustratorsportfolio



  • Any strong opinions on portfolio thumbnails amongst the group? Does the clickable image on a portfolio site need to show the whole image? or is showing a cropped version of the image for a consistent shape on a site acceptable/fine?

    Example... that is how I currently show things on my personal portfolio...

    0_1486065638856_portfolio-question.jpg

    Thoughts?



  • I think it looks pretty good--but check out some of the One Fantastic Week stuff on Youtube (if you haven't already).

    A lot of their crit casts focus on portfolio site layouts, common pitfalls, things to definitely do, things to definitely not do (that they see people do ALL THE TIME), etc.



  • Hi Andy, I just looked over your site and thought it looked great. A lot of the new template sites are using that wide scroll format. Is that what you are thinking of going towards? I use Cloversites for my counseling practice site (www.xpeditioncounseling.com), but they are not good if you want to sell merch (which you have). You are probably familiar with Wix or Square Space. I am considering these for my book site. Maybe an idea to consider is to narrow down your four headings (illustration, comix, sketch, design) into two or three categories or one window that separates these elements with less examples. Just a thought! Hope this is helpful.



  • @mattramsey LOVE CritCast! The funny thing is I was already subscribed to 1FW but hadn't watched any of the CritCast episodes. Thanks for bringing those to my attention... tons of valuable info!


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