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08/06/2005 03:53:03 AM · #1
If you all have the time, I am hoping to do a little upgrading to my website in the near future and would like a critique of the existing one. I may or may not do a total makover, but I want to keep it simple and easy to navigate. Any help would be greatly appreciated. Thanks, Martin.

//www.battilanaphotoart.com/
08/06/2005 11:01:49 AM · #2
Martin,

I would work towards a whole makeover. I hope that isn't too harsh.

First, I wouldn't use a repeading background pic on the splash page (unless it was a subtle seamless bg). The text on that page is hard to read amongst the business of the flower petals.

Next, I don't like the layout/navigation of the various categories of photos you have up for viewing/sale. I run at a resolution of 1280x1024, which I feel is in the mainstream or maybe even higher than the average web surfer, and still have to scroll down to see the sub-categories. Also, it took me a bit to realize that they were sub-categories. You should have the most important information in the top portion of the page, so people see it right away, without having to scroll. Whether you feel the top 400px, or top 500px, etc... will hit your target audience best, is your call.

I would also settle on a single color palette, and use it consistently throughout.

Some thumbnails are 'buttonized' some aren't. Again, consistency...

Personally, when marketing yourself, I don't care for the 'behind the camera' shots. For fun, they're fine.

It looks like you are trying to present a professional web site where others can view your shots and purchase your prints, or maybe even learn how to contact you for hire. IMHO, this calls for a very professional image. If you are more of a photographer than web designer (I'm not much of either...more of a backseat driver :-) ) Maybe see if you can find a local web designer and trade skills.

Again, hope this wasn't too harsh, it's all just my opinion. Take it with as much salt as you feel is warranted.
08/06/2005 11:10:32 AM · #3
I agree... this looks like a site that could pop up on world's most amateur websites. It's difficult to know where to begin.
I'm sure you could get some good photography templates quite cheaply.
:-)
08/06/2005 11:18:50 AM · #4
I find the entrance page to be difficult to read. You don't want to put text over a background that allows them to blend in together such as white over yellow. Having the decline link to send them to hell.com doesn't seem like a good idea, why don't you just make your site so images can't be taken from them you never send people away. The page you go to when you hit enter is much better, but I would try to keep all pages in the same format and scheme.
Good luck
08/06/2005 02:24:39 PM · #5
Thanks, I put the whole thing together in Frontpage without templates and was learning as I was going building everthing in HTML. It was an experiment toward a better site which I now hope to build. That why all the different colors pages to see what looked best. I think I know a lot of the problems that exist and have been mentioned. What I am looking for is a direction to go.
08/06/2005 02:27:20 PM · #6
I would look at as many sites as possible of other photographers. Then, without stealing code or copying directly use all the various elements you liked plus some new ideas to create a site you like.
08/06/2005 03:58:34 PM · #7
Originally posted by BobsterLobster:

I would look at as many sites as possible of other photographers. Then, without stealing code or copying directly use all the various elements you liked plus some new ideas to create a site you like.


I think I might just buy a template. Any good places to look? I want something simple and uncluttered.
08/06/2005 04:02:01 PM · #8
These are free.
//www.oswd.org/

These aren't.
//www.templatemonster.com/

I've never actually bought a template so I'm not vouching for the sites. Just a couple I happened to have linked.
08/06/2005 04:17:53 PM · #9
Ditto on above.

My take:

-Don't use intro pages. What does it accomplish to say you're "about to" enter a page? Most people go somewhere on purpose. Think about it in terms of DPC. Do you really need to see a splash page telling you you where you're about to go? One last word on splash / intro pages: go to the most used sites in the world (think big corporation) and see how many have splash pages. Very, very few.

-Don't use FrontPage. It's simply not good enough (IMO) to do a high quality site. Use Dreamweaver or GoLive (my preference).

-Purchase a high quality template and learn from that. //www.boxedart.com/ is my source. I used one of their templates to build this: //www.aboutimage.com/kmh (yes, the template is heavily modified).

-DRAW your site in Photoshop. Use whatever PS skills you have to create a beautiful looking site. Then use ImageReady to convert it to HTML. Modify in an HTML editor from there.

Message edited by author 2005-08-06 16:20:49.
08/06/2005 04:45:38 PM · #10
i don't want to be harsh, but a make over sounds good~! i agree with almost everything said so far regarding what to stay away from, including the intro page! thats a big one! but a over haul sounds good
08/06/2005 05:37:23 PM · #11
I agree on a more professional look for your site...

This is also because I noticed thta you have a great eye for detail and creativity... Well what am I saying, you have won so many awards!!

Keep up the good work.
08/06/2005 05:50:53 PM · #12
Some nice templates at allwebcodesign.com


08/06/2005 05:54:14 PM · #13
Your website is lightning fast. And your photography is bold and colorful. Only one thing -- for me the bright backgrounds detracted from the photos. The light background comptetes for my attention. Otherwise congratulations you have a great site.
08/06/2005 06:28:57 PM · #14
its simple, thats all it needs to be. the only thing i would change is the navigation, perhaps more thumbnails so you can eg. navigate all landscape photos off the same page. other than that i think its alright. its the photography that counts, the site is just to show it in the most user friendly way possible.
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