Project: A Web Gallery

What you can see on your monitor can also be distributed across the internet to as many people as you can persuade to look. Posting a selection of your images to a web gallery is quite straightforward (You will need a web account), and a number of image-processing programs and photo-browsing programs offer simple procedures for creating one. This part is not at all taxing, and you should concentrate on two aspects that will establish the character and quality of your gallery – preparing the images for on-screen display, and designing the viewer’s experience of visiting the site in such a way that it shows off your images to their best advantage.

Most of what we have been through in this course has been directed at the on-screen appearance of photographs, so there is very little else that you will need to consider for the gallery.

The size of the image is one. Usually, a large size on-screen delivers a stronger visual impact, but this may be offset by slower loading. You might also want to consider whether the images at your chosen size would benefit from a certain amount of sharpening.

The seconds aspect is editorial, and concerns the design of the pages and the sequencing of images. Work with the tools offered by the program you decide to use, which will almost certainly include a choice of already designed templates. You might want to consider the following;

  • Decide what you want from your website. What is its purpose? Do you want to show off your best images, or exchange all of them with friends, or present just one aspect of your work?
  • You are presenting your best work. Maintain confidence in the excellence of your images, and think of the website as a display arena of fine photographs.
  • The image comes first. The first priority should be displaying each photograph to its best advantage. That means occupying a substantial area of the screen and with nothing around it that fights for attention.
  • Everything needs a reason. Add symbols, buttons and words only as necessary.
  • Do you want your site to fit in with the general standards and style of other photography sites? Or do you want it to stand apart? Take some time to look at other photographers’ websites. Consider making screen grabs of them so that later, you can put your new design among them to see how it compares.
  • Keep it simple. A good default decision in photo gallery design is simplicity.
  • Offer the fewest clicks to navigate. Don’t make the viewer work hard.
  • Make it searchable. Put important words in HTML, not embedded in pictures. Search engines like Google can search only words, not pictures.
  • Let viewers know where they are at any time, and how to get to the next picture or set of pictures. An array of thumbnail images is a good way of stepping in and out of a collection.
  • Get other people’s opinions. Talk through your ideas and design with friends and other photographers, in order to help give advice and an objective opinion.

It’s up to you whether you want to attempt to create a web gallery at this stage or not. If you feel as though you are not yet ready, spend some time looking at other photographers’ galleries and make notes, about what you like and don’t like, useful features, things that get in the way etc.

Before I begin this project, I want to do some research into what makes a great photography website / gallery. I will look at well established photography websites and galleries, and note any eye-catching qualities, anything I like or dislike, and any similarities or differences between them.

Fashion / Beauty Galleries:

Tim Walker – London.

http://www.timwalkerphotography.com/recent-work

Walker is a British photographer who gained his passion for photography whilst working at the Condé Nast library in London where he worked on the Cecil Beaton archive for a year before university. After completing his 3 year BA Honors degree in Photography, he was awarded third prize as The Independent Young Photographer Of The Year. He began working as a freelance photographic assistant in London, before moving to New York City to work as a full-time assistant to Richard Avedon.

Upon his return to England, he began focusing his photography around portrait and documentary work for British newspapers. At the age of 25 he shot his first fashion story for Vogue. He has since photographed for the British, Italian, and American editions, as well as W Magazine and LOVE Magazine ever since.

Tim Walker Front Page

Tim Walker Front Page

Tim Walker Recent Work

Tim Walker Recent Work

Tim Walker Biography

Tim Walker Biography

Tim Walker Photo Book Page

Tim Walker Photo Book Page

When looking at Walker’s website, I have noticed that he keeps it very simple, similar to a high-end fashion magazine. A plain white background enabled his photographs to stand out a lot more, than if they were on a busy background, similar to how he would expect his photographs to be shown in a fashion magazine. Because his photographs are very unique and thought-provoking, I think that by keeping a simple background, it helps to draw the viewer’s attention to the photograph. He also includes details in the bottom left hand corner regarding who the photograph is of, where it was taken, for whom it was taken and the date.

It is a very easy website to use, the tabs in the left hand corner are accessible and simple. He includes options to view his photo books, news articles, biography and contact details.

  • Simple yet bold front page with only one photograph
  • Simple white background
  • Bold name header
  • Simple, clear tabs in the left hand corner
  • Options to view his photo books, news articles, biography, videos
  • Information regarding the photograph, included at the bottom left corner
  • Large and medium-sized photographs
  • Contact details available
  • Professional looking

Jason Bell – London / New York City

http://www.jasonbellphoto.com/#/home/

Bell is a British photographer, born in London. He chose a career as a portrait photographer whilst in university. His work has included well-known celebrities and has appeared in some of the worlds most famous publications, such as Vanity Fair and Vogue US & UK.

Bell has shot photographs which have been used for film posters including Billy Elliot, Love Actually and Bridget Jones 2. The National Portrait Gallery have purchased several pieces from Bell’s work, and have been kept for their permanent collection.

Jason Bell Front Page

Jason Bell Front Page

Jason Bell Vogue Photographs

Jason Bell Vogue Photographs

Jason Bell Biography

Jason Bell Biography

Jason Bell Photo Books

Jason Bell Photo Books

There are noticeable similarities between Tim Walker and Jason Bell’s website. The first being that they both have a simple front page. They both have a large striking photograph on the front, drawing the viewer’s attention in. They keep the background simple, keeping it plain white. Bell includes the name of the model under the photograph, similar to Walker.

They have simple easy to use tabs on the left hand side of the page. These too include present and previous works, photo books, biography and contact details.

They are both professional, clean-looking websites that are easy to use, and therefore only focus on their work. They let their photographs speak for themselves and for the website. They both remind me of high-end magazines, in which they have plain white backgrounds, where the photographs are the main focus with little but necessary writing.

  • Simple yet bold front page with only one photograph
  • Simple white background
  • Bold name header
  • Simple, clear tabs in the left hand side of the page
  • Options to view his photo books, present and previous work, biography, videos
  • Information regarding the photograph, included at the bottom left corner
  • Large and medium-sized photographs
  • Contact details available
  • Professional looking

Richard Miles

http://www.richardmilesphotography.co.uk/#!/home/

Richard Miles is an award-winning, freelance photographer who has been internationally published. He has appeared on BBC television and has worked with respected industry names such as Errol Douglas, Phil Smith and Royston Blythe. His hair and beauty photographs have regularly appeared on the front cover of several best-selling glossy magazines.

Richard Miles Front Page

Richard Miles Front Page

Richard Miles Hair and Beauty

Richard Miles Hair and Beauty Colour

Richard Miles Hair and Beauty Monochrome

Richard Miles Hair and Beauty Monochrome

Richard Miles Biography

Richard Miles Biography

One noticeable difference with Miles website is that he has decided to use a black background. His front page contains a slide show, consisting of large monochrome and colour photographs which take up a large quantity of the screen.

His links are situated at the top of the page, which take up less room, enabling larger photographs to be used. His links include options to other works, videos, biography and contact details, similar to Walker and Bells. He also uses links to social media sites, something which Walker and Bell don’t use.

His photographs of the hair and beauty are located on a slide which you slide along in order to view each photograph. The photographs are all the same size, giving the feeling of uniformity and tidiness.

His choice of using a black background is a very well thought out choice. His photographs of the hair and beauty are either colour or monochrome. They each contain a well-lit model with a striking pose. Although they are lined up at the same size, on a slide mechanism, and don’t include much of the black background, they are still somewhat framed by the background, making them stand out much more.

This is a very easy to use website, with a lot of his work available to view.

  • Bold front page with a slide show of work
  • Simple black background
  • Bold name header
  • Simple, clear tabs at the top of the page
  • Options to view his present and previous work, biography, videos, blog and social media links
  • Large and medium-sized photographs
  • Contact details available
  • Professional looking

Animal / Wildlife Galleries:

Joel Sartore

http://www.joelsartore.com/

Joel Sartore is a world-famous photographer, who specializes in photographing landscapes and documenting endangered species. He chooses to photograph these subjects, because he is a conservationist. He wants to show us as viewers, a world worth saving. Sartore is also a speaker, author, teacher and a National Geographic Fellow. He regularly contributes to the  National Geographic Magazine. He is the founder of The Photo Ark, a multi-year documentary project to save species and habitat. He has also written several books.

In addition to the work he has done for National Geographic, his work has also appeared in Audubon Magazine, Geo, Sports Illustrated, The New York Times and numerous book projects. Not only has his work been published in magazines, but it has also appeared in several national broadcasts, such as National Geographic’s Explorer, the NBC Nightly News, NPR’s Weekend Edition and an hour-long PBS documentary, At Close Range.

Joel Sartore Front Page

Joel Sartore Front Page

Joel Sartore Photographs Page

Joel Sartore Photographs Page

Joel Sartore Buy Photographs Individually

Joel Sartore Buy Photographs Individually

Joel Sartore Store

Joel Sartore Store

Joel Sartore Biography

Joel Sartore Biography

Comparing Joel Sartore’s website, to the three previous fashion websites, I have found some similarities and differences. The first similarity is on the front page. Sartore uses a slide show on the front page, which moves through medium size photographs. Similar to Richard Miles, only just on a smaller scale. There is also a short description about Sartore and his work on the front page, which helps draw your interest in, and makes you want to look through the rest of his website.

The tabs and links are situated at the top of the page, leaving more space and room for photographs in the main section of the page. He also has quick links which enable you to search for certain photographs, rather than scrolling through all of them. There is also quick links to his social network pages and contact details, all located on the front page, making it quick and easy for people to look and click for any information they may need.

When you click to view his ‘Photos’ page, each set of photographs are in categories which makes things easier and simple to view, rather than scrolling through one large section of photographs.

Once you click to view a photograph, there is an opportunity to purchase them individually, check for stock quantity and an option to share the photograph via social media. This is a great idea if you are thinking of selling your photographs on your website. Enabling the viewers to check for stock next to each photograph, is a great idea, especially as it can be annoying if you add an item to your basket, and attempt to check out, only to find that it is not in stock. At least with this feature, you’re able to check in advance. Each photograph also contains details about the image underneath, similar to the other websites previous.

Sartore has a store on his website, which contains several different items, all incorporating his photographs, for you to purchase. Therefore, not only is this a portfolio website, it is also a shop, and you are able to purchase your favourite prints or products.

He also has several other links, similar to the three previous website, including a biography page. There is also links which enable you to download head shots, documents from events he has attended, videos to watch and much more.

I find this website very easy to use, similar to the previous three. He has kept it simple with a plain dark background which help to show off his photographs against the simple background. There is a bold yet simple front page, incorporating a slide show of his best work, similar again to the others. It is a user-friendly website, with simple links, social media links and a lot of event details, contact details, videos to watch and much more.

I like the addition of the store, and being able to purchase prints. This gives us as viewers the opportunity to own a great piece of work.

  • Bold front page with a slide show of work
  • Simple dark background
  • Bold name header
  • Simple, clear tabs at the top of the page
  • Options to view his present and previous work, biography, events, videos, blog and social media links
  • Large and medium-sized photographs
  • Details about each photograph, underneath.
  • Contact details available
  • Store to purchase prints and products
  • Downloadable PDF files and Photographs
  • Professional looking

Jim Dratfield

http://petography.com/

Jim Dratfield was born in Princeton NJ. He grew up in a theatrical family, and even starred on Broadway himself, when he was young. His love for theatre encouraged him to open up his own theatre company O Drat! Productions.

Jim decided to move back to the East Coast, where he later combined his love for photography and animals, whilst dreaming up concepts for promotional mailing which was being sent to casting directors, and photographing himself and his beloved pet dog Kuma an Akita. Combining photography and pets was something he knew would be popular, as owners like him, have a deep affection for their pets and he knew that they would cherish portraits of their little ones.

In February 1993, Dratfield co-founded Petography Inc, an animal portrait studio, specializing in fine art photographs of pets, all shapes and sizes. Since then, Petography Inc has become a huge success. Dratfield has flown all around the world photographing owners with their pets, he has even photographed portraits for well-known celebrities.

Jim Dratfield Front Page

Jim Dratfield Front Page

Jim Dratfield Drop Down Menu - Portfolios

Jim Dratfield Drop Down Menu – Portfolios

Jim Dratfield Cat Portfolio

Jim Dratfield Cat Portfolio

Jim Dratfield Book Page

Jim Dratfield Book Page

Jim Dratfield Biography

Jim Dratfield Biography

Jim Dratfield’s website is very similar to all of the above websites. He has a very simple front page, with a slide show of his best work in a large size. He has a large name header at the top, followed by his easy to use links.

When viewing his portfolio work, he uses slide shows to look through his work, this is similar to Richard Miles. A difference is that he doesn’t include any information about each photograph.

He uses a plain dark background, again similar to the previous websites, this makes his work stand out from the background.

There is a book link which takes you to a list of his published books, and a link to Amazon where you can purchase them. Different to the other websites.

There are links for biography, events and press, and also a contact link which takes you straight to a message box and email address. Very simple, yet different to the other websites. There is also now links to social media, which is similar to Tim Walker and Jason Bell, leaving me to have the feeling that this is a high-end photographer, who can only be reached by message or email only.

  • Bold front page with a slide show of work
  • Simple dark background
  • Bold name header
  • Simple, clear tabs at the top of the page
  • Options to view his present and previous work, biography, events and contact details
  • Large and medium-sized photographs
  • Contact details available
  • Professional Looking

After looking at all of the websites and galleries, I have found similarities and differences between all of them. Some things I like and some I don’t.  The first similarity is that they all look professional. The first appearance always count, and every front page is clean, simple and tidy. They each contain a bold image which draws you in as a viewer first, and some even contain a slide show which showcases their best work, as like me, I would find it hard to choose just one photograph to put as a front cover, and therefore choosing a slide show option would work better.

They each keep to a simple plain colour tone, whether it is white or black. None of them have chosen to use patterned backgrounds or multi-coloured backgrounds. By doing so, they have avoided any confusion. Choosing a wild patterned or multi-coloured background would be very messy and it wouldn’t pull your attention into the photographs as well as a simple background would. Perhaps a faint pattern or pastel multi-coloured could work, however, it would depend on what theme of photography you would be showcasing.

They all have bold name headers, showing off their names or the company’s name. This is extremely important, as you want people to know who you are. They all have simple, quick and easy to use links to other pages, portfolio works, biography, contact areas and books or shops. Navigating around a website can be confusing at times, however, I found that navigating around these were very easy and simple. This is something that I want to incorporate into my website.

I like the use of categories when showcasing your work, for example, Joel Sartore uses categories to split the large quantity of photographs up. It looks tidy and is easy to use and find certain themes of work, rather than scrolling through image after image.

The use of social media links is a good idea, as this makes you more accessible to your clients, viewers or fans. They are therefore able to see any upcoming events, news feeds or new photographs that you have taken. It may be difficult if you don’t have a social media page based on your photography work. This is something I don’t have, so using social media links wouldn’t work for me. However, this is something that I do like.

Incorporating a store / shop, where you can purchase prints or products is a great idea. However, I have to decide whether or not I want my website to just be a portfolio for my best work, or whether I want to combine that with the opportunity to sell prints.

Therefore, after gaining inspiration from researching other photographers website and galleries, I now have to plan my own.

My Own Web Gallery:

Looking back to the advice given at the beginning of this project, we were given bullet points of key things to remember when beginning your own website and web gallery. I will add them below and reply with my response.

  • Decide what you want from your website. What is its purpose? Do you want to show off your best images, or exchange all of them with friends, or present just one aspect of your work?

I want to produce a website which shows off my best photographs, similar to a portfolio of work. I want to showcase three or four themes of work, I don’t want to just focus on one area of photography. I want to have a website which is accessible to not only friends, but to everyone. I want it to be seen worldwide.

  • Do you want your site to fit in with the general standards and style of other photography sites? Or do you want it to stand apart?

After researching other photographers websites, I would like to fit in with the general standards and style of their sites. I prefer the professional looking websites when it comes to showcasing your work as it looks more appealing. The viewers are able to focus more on your photographs, rather than focusing on a distracting background, or they may give up looking all together if your website is messy or difficult to navigate around.

  • You are presenting your best work. Maintain confidence in the excellence of your images, and think of the website as a display arena of fine photographs.

For my website, I will be presenting my best photographs. I will have to look through all of my saved photographs on my computer, and choose only a handful to show. I have to remember that less is more, so when I am choosing what photographs I want to show, I need to select the best ones. I also have to decide what themes of work I want to present, for example, Animals, Flowers, Landscapes, Travel, Portraits… I need to narrow it down to only a few, but I want to show a range of work, in order to show that I am able to photograph a variety of things.

  • Keep it simple. A good default decision in photo gallery design is simplicity.

In regards to the research I have done on the photographers websites, the one similarity I noticed was that they were all simple, clean and easy to use. This is something I want to apply to my website. I want it to be easy for people to use. I want easy, clear links to use, so people know where they are when viewing the different photographs or pages.

I want to produce a striking front page. The websites I researched all used either one main photograph to grab the viewer’s attention, or they used a handful of their best pieces, and used a slide show. I need to remember that the first appearance is what counts, it needs to have a lasting impression and needs to either pull the viewer in, making them stay and proceed to look around, or it can make them exit and look elsewhere.

I need to make sure that each photograph is categorised, and that they are not all bundled together, making it a long line of photographs to scroll through. It needs to be organized properly.

  • The image comes first. The first priority should be displaying each photograph to its best advantage. That means occupying a substantial area of the screen and with nothing around it that fights for attention.

In terms of displaying each photograph, I need to remember that nowadays, browsing online can be done via PC, Mac, Laptop, Smart Phone or Tablets. Therefore, I need to choose a website which has the added feature of being able to be viewed on all of these devices.

I need to choose a size of photograph to present. I will be using my JPEG photographs, as this is mainly what I shoot with anyway. In terms of the size of the photograph, If I choose a large size, than I need to keep in mind that the larger they are, the slower they may load on certain devices, and the more image processing it may need, such as sharpening.

I also need to decided what colour background I will be using for my website. If I am to fit in to the general standard of photography websites, then showing my photographs may work well on either a white or black background. I will have to decide what looks best when I am designing my website.

  • Everything needs a reason. Add symbols, buttons and words only as necessary.

Less is more, in regard to writing. I will only add writing about where the photograph was taken, if the website template I use will allow me to. I will also create and about page, in order to introduce myself and some background history, but not too much.

In regards to symbols and buttons, again less is more. The less buttons or links there are, the easy it is us use and navigate around. I have found in the past when viewing websites, that the more buttons or links that have been used, the more confusing it can be.

I will be including watermarks on each of my photographs, in order to stop any theft. These watermarks will be very small and faint, in order not to distract the attention from the photograph. My watermark will say Chantelle Grace Photography.

I will not be including a shopping cart or store area, as I don’t intent to sell any prints or products. This may change in the future, and if the website template allows me to add a selling area, then I may include it in the future.

I will also not be using links to social media, as I don’t have social media accounts for my photography.

  • Make it searchable. Put important words in HTML, not embedded in pictures. Search engines like Google can search only words, not pictures.

I want to find a free website which I can create my website on with no charge. I am fully aware that this may hinder certain things for example, it may have advertising from the website company itself, or their domain name, however, at this moment in time, I do not feel that I am 100% certain about diving into a photography website. I want to produce this website for free, as this will be a learning experience for me as I have never made one before, and I would like to learn on the way. I think that by me purchasing anything will be too final, and I am not ready to take that step yet.

  • Let viewers know where they are at any time, and how to get to the next picture or set of pictures. An array of thumbnail images is a good way of stepping in and out of a collection.

When viewing photographs on a website, it is sometimes difficult to find out how you navigate onto the next photograph. Sometimes there are hidden arrows which can only be found if you hover over the present photograph, or sometimes it changes by itself as it may be a slide show. I need to decide what navigation tool I will be using, and whether it will be visible in order to help people navigate their way through my photographs. I will also need to decide if I will use thumbnail photographs at the bottom of each larger photograph, or just allow the viewer to look through each photograph one by one.

  • Get other people’s opinions. Talk through your ideas and design with friends and other photographers, in order to help give advice and an objective opinion.

I will definitely ask my friends and families advice when I am designing my website, after all, second or third opinions are better than just one. They may not like some of my photographs or they may advise me to alter certain things on the website, it just depends on their opinions. I need to remember that these opinions may help as the things they notice, will be what others may notice too, which could lead them to not wanting to stay on my website, and therefore missing out on viewing the rest of my work.

Beginning My Website:

The first thing I had to do was choose what photographs I wanted to present on my website. I own a vast quantity of photographs which I have taken over many years. Thankfully, I always categorise my work, making it easier for me to search for certain photographs. I decided to open up a new folder for this project, in order to drop any photographs I thought would be suitable for this website, into. After looking through all of my photographs, I decided to categorise them in the new folder. I made four folders, Animals, Flowers, Beaches and Sunsets and Travel. Each folder contained approximately 10-16 photographs.

My Folder Choices

My Folder Choices

Animal Choices

Animal Choices

Flower Choices

Flower Choices

Beaches and Sunset Choices

Beaches and Sunset Choices

Travel Choices

Travel Choices

After choosing these photographs, with the help of my Mother, I managed to reject a few which were either too blurred, duplicated and one was better than the other, not bold or interesting enough. I must admit, it was difficult to choose the ones I wanted to keep and the ones to reject, but I had to remember that less is more, and I want to present my best photographs.

Final Animal Choices

Final Animal Choices

Final Flower Choices

Final Flower Choices

Final Beach and Sunset Choices

Final Beach and Sunset Choices

Final Travel Choices

Final Travel Choices

Once I had chosen my final selection of photographs, I had to go through each of them and process them to make them better final images. Some would need cropping slightly, some needed brightening or darkening in places, and some would need sharpening, but the rest were ok. I didn’t want to over process any of them as this would create fake images and I didn’t want to present false images.

Once the image processing had been done, I then needed to find a free website in order to begin building mine. I looked around on Google, for free websites, which have templates already made for you to then alter and adjust yourself as you wish. I found a website called https://www.wix.com/.

Wix Website Builder

Wix Website Builder

After finding the website builder which had templates, I decided to have a look through their photography templates. I wanted to find something which was simple, clean, professional looking and easy to use. They had four pages of photography templates, so deciding on a favourite was going to be difficult.

Wix Template Selection

Wix Template Selection

Wix Photography Templates

Wix Photography Templates

Wix Photography Templates

Wix Photography Templates

Wix Photography Templates

Wix Photography Templates

After looking through all of the templates, I decided on just one. I decided to choose the ‘Fashion Stylist’ website template. Below are some screenshots of the template which I have chosen. I will explain underneath why I decided to choose this template to build my website from.

Fashion Stylist Website Template Front Page

Fashion Stylist Website Template Front Page

I decided to choose this template, because it reminded me of Tim Walker and Jason Bell’s websites. The front page is clean, simple, professional looking and contains one strong photograph to draw the viewer’s attention in. The links are situated at the top of the page, in a tidy row. There is a bold name heading, which makes an impact, and lets people know who I am.

Another reason is because this template is suitable to be viewed on all devices. This way, my website can be viewed on a PC, Mac, Laptop, Mobile or Tablet devices.

Fashion Stylist Website Template Fashion Page

Fashion Stylist Website Template Fashion Page

This is the fashion page. I would obviously change the link names to what themes I am presenting, which is Animals, Beaches, Flowers and Travel. However, what drew me to this template is the way the photographs were presented. I mentioned previously that I liked how Joel Sartore presented his work, in a categorised manner. I didn’t want to use a slide show for my website, so I had to decide whether or not I would present my photographs one by one in a row, or whether or not to use a presentation similar to Joel Sartore.

The way these photographs were presented caught my eye simply because I liked how they have arranged the different shapes and sizes. Rather than lining up all of the horizontal photographs together and the landscapes together, they have mixed them together. This somehow flows and you are able to see every photograph at once. You as a viewer are then able to choose which photograph you want to click on to view larger.

Fashion Stylist Website Template Beauty Page

Fashion Stylist Website Template Beauty Page

Fashion Stylist Website Template Open Image

Fashion Stylist Website Template Open Image

Once you have clicked on a certain photograph to view, the photograph is then opened on the screen like this. It has a clear X to close the photograph, and clear arrows to go back and forth. This is something I like, as I have previously mentioned that it can be annoying or distracting if you can’t find a way of moving onto the next photograph or closing the first one down. Like this project advised, your viewers must always know where they are, and how they can move onto the next set of photographs. This template has made that very clear and easy to use.

Fashion Stylist Website Template Blog Page

Fashion Stylist Website Template Blog Page

Every website I researched contained an about section and a contact section. This template contains both which is great, as this way , I am able to let viewers know who I am, and a way to contact me. It is very simple and easy to use, so they won’t find it difficult to use.

Fashion Stylist Website Template Blog Page

Fashion Stylist Website Template Blog Page

This template contains an option for a blog. You are able to use a current blog or create a new one via your website. You are then able to link and social media pages to that blog. This way you are able to keep any fans or followers updated with any new photographs you may have taken, or any current projects you are on.

I don’t currently use a social media page for my photography work, therefore, I will not be adding any social media links to this website, however, I will keep the blog, as this way, if I am to keep this website in the future, I will be able to write blog entries for viewers of the website to read, and I may think about opening a social media page, which can the be added.

In the meantime, I will most likely inform the viewers of this blog, by adding the link for people to read, and explain why I have opened the website.

Now that I have my photographs ready and I have chosen the website and template I will be using, I now have to proceed in building my website.

I will start with my front page. The first thing I will do, is decide on what photograph I would like to present on my front page. I wanted to use a photograph which contains colour, as this will pull in the viewer’s attention. I have decided to use a large red poppy for my photograph on the front page. It is a very bold, colourful and detailed photograph. This will help to draw viewers in, making them want to look at the rest of my work.

The second thing I needed to change was the name header. It currently had the template name, so I changed it to Chantelle Grace, with Photography underneath. I then had to re name the links at the top, and add one more page as there were only enough for three photographic areas and I needed four. I also changed the copyright name at the bottom of the page to my full name. I have included screenshots of my website. The screen was zoomed out in order to fit the full page onto the screen, therefore, things may appear smaller than they actually are.

My Website Front Page

My Website Front Page

I kept my front page simple, with one singular bold photograph on the front with the links to the other pages up the top. My name is bold and situated in the centre of the page so people know who I am and that it is a photography website. My front page has similarities between Tim Walker and Jim Dratfield’s websites. They both keep their front pages simple with a plain background and a large photograph on the front page. A similarity between mine and Dratfield’s is the links are situated at the top of the page with a photograph in the centre of the page. Apart from the background colour, the only difference is where our name headers are situated. In regards to Walker’s website, there are noticeable differences such as where the photograph is located and the writing, however, it is similar with the clean white background and the professional look. I also haven’t included information about the photograph to the side of this photograph, which Walker does on his front page.

Tim Walker Front Page

Tim Walker Front Page

Jim Dratfield Front Page

Jim Dratfield Front Page

My Website Animal Page

My Website Animal Page

This is how my photographs are presented on each page. Rather than being grouped all together, I have categorised them, allowing each category to have its own page, similar to Joel Sartore. This way, you won’t have to scroll through my photographs as they aren’t on a slideshow mechanism. You are able to see all of the photographs in this category on a small scale, then you can decided whether or not you want to view them larger.

My Website Animal Photograph

My Website Animal Photograph

If you do decide to click on a photograph, to view it on a larger scale, this will appear. The photograph will be on its own with clear arrows either side to let the viewer know where to click in order to view the previous or next photograph. There is also a clear X in the top right hand corner, which allows the viewer to know where to click in order to close the photograph.

My Website Beaches Page

My Website Beaches Page

My Website Flowers Page

My Website Flowers Page

My Website Travel Page

My Website Travel Page

My Website About Page

My Website About Page

Tim Walker Biography

Tim Walker Biography

Richard Miles Biography

Richard Miles Biography

Every website I have researched has contained an about page with contact details, therefore, I knew that I had to keep the one on the template and alter the writing and contact details. I kept the information simple as I didn’t want to write an essay about myself. The message box allows viewers to message me directly to my email account, which means that if they require any more information etc, then they can have direct contact to me. The only difference between my biography and contact section and the websites I researched, is that I combined both together to save space, whereas they had separate pages for biography and contact details. I had to do this because I added a fourth page for the travel photographs.

My Website Blog Page

My Website Blog Page

Unlike the websites I researched, I decided to keep the blog page on this template. The websites I researched contained links to Book pages, Events pages, Video pages and Archive pages, however, none of them contained a blog page. I decided to keep this because in the future, if I am to keep this website and update it regularly, then by keeping a blog going, I will be able to allow the viewers to read my progress. They will be able to read about any new photographs I may have taken and uploaded to the website, about any exhibitions I may have visited and much more. It is a way of keep a social feel to that part of the website, as I don’t own a social media page for my photography yet, so this is one step to beginning a social media presence.

The one unfortunate thing is that because I produced this website for free, the company ‘WIX.com’ have kept an advertising banner at the bottom of the page and in the top right hand corner. This is unfortunate, but understandable, as I know that if I decided to pay in the future, then this would be taken off and removed. However, for now, it stays.

Below is the link to my website. I hope you all have a look and enjoy it as much as I do.

http://chantellegracephotos.wix.com/photography

Conclusion:

I am extremely pleased with my final website. I have never made a website before, so by creating one which would present my photography work was going to be difficult as I wanted to produce something which showed off my work. I thought that if I got something wrong with the website or the designs, then I may end up producing a terrible website and no one would want to look at it or my work. I believe that by researching photography websites of other photographers was a brilliant idea, as I was able to gain a lot of inspiration from looking at how they designed their websites in order to show off their work. I was able to use this inspiration in order to look for the right template design for my website. Once I had chosen the template, I used the inspiration to present my work and keep things simple and professional looking.

The one challenge I experienced was deciding what photographs to present on the website. I have a vast quantity of photographs on my computer, so it took me a while to decide what were the best ones and to narrow my choices down. Once I had chosen the few, I then had to apply some image processing to crop a few areas and lighten some photographs, I also had to add water marks with my name, in order to stop any theft of my photographs once they are on my website.

I had no technical problems in regards to designing my website. I was very fortunate because the template I used was easy to adjust and alter. The designers of the template made everything simple and easy to use. I was also fortunate that this template was able to be used on all type of media devices, so my website can be viewed online on any device.

If I had to change anything, I suppose that in the future, I would add some more photographs or change a few around, keeping it up to date. I would think about paying for the website to enable me to discard any ‘Wix.com’ advertising banners. I would also be able to design my own domain name, allowing me to take out the .wix.com.

I would also think about using the Shop and Store link which my template has, in order to sell a few prints in the future. I would also think about creating some social media sites in order for me to link my website to the social media pages, making my photography more visible and well known. However, for now I am pleased with the final result.

References:

Fashion / Beauty Galleries:

  • Tim Walker – London.

http://www.timwalkerphotography.com/recent-work

  • Jason Bell – London / New York City

http://www.jasonbellphoto.com/#/home/

  • Richard Miles

http://www.richardmilesphotography.co.uk/#!/home/

Animal / Wildlife Galleries:

  • Joel Sartore

http://www.joelsartore.com/

  • Jim Dratfield

http://petography.com/

My Own Website / Web Gallery

  • Website Builder

https://www.wix.com/

  • My Photography Website

http://chantellegracephotos.wix.com/photography

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