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Author Topic: New Website  (Read 1698 times)
spreeg
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« on: August 27, 2011, 09:55:28 PM »
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Hi all,
I just finished the first version of my new website.  Yes it's Word Press, Photocrati, but I didn't want to spend a lot of time coding HTML.  Anyway, I was hoping to get some constructive feedback on both the site itself, and any if you have comments on any of the pictures, that is more than welcome too.

The site is:

stevepreeg.com

Thanks in advance for your advice.

Cheers
Steve
« Last Edit: August 27, 2011, 09:58:53 PM by spreeg » Logged
Steve Weldon
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« Reply #1 on: August 28, 2011, 12:01:41 AM »
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but I didn't want to spend a lot of time coding HTML.

I don't want to be rude.. but you do know web developers use HTML editors for all but perhaps fixing bugs?  It's not that much different than using a word processor at the level of your site.  Is HTML one of your skill sets?

To me, what you have is a fairly ordinary web gallery with your name on it.  It's nice enough, nice pics, but it's really ordinary.  I'm not saying ordinary is bad, not if that was your intent.

Good luck with it.
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John R
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« Reply #2 on: August 28, 2011, 12:03:11 AM »
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I will let someone else comment on the design of your website, except to say it was simple and well layed out. From my point of view, the overall quality of the images are excellent. On your auto slide shows, the first image literally disappears before it has a chance to be seen. Not sure if you can do anything about this, as it is loading when it appears. Not really a dog person, but I enjoyed the animal gallery very much. The landscape gallery is superb!

JMR
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EduPerez
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« Reply #3 on: September 06, 2011, 02:04:26 AM »
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The galleries seem empty from here (Firefox 4 on Windows XP).
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N Walker
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« Reply #4 on: September 06, 2011, 04:17:39 AM »
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Hi all,
I just finished the first version of my new website.  Yes it's Word Press, Photocrati, but I didn't want to spend a lot of time coding HTML.  Anyway, I was hoping to get some constructive feedback on both the site itself, and any if you have comments on any of the pictures, that is more than welcome too.

The site is:

stevepreeg.com

Thanks in advance for your advice.

Cheers
Steve

First impressions are very important, especially in an age of expected web content immediacy within saturated markets. My 8 meg broadband service runs at 6.5 meg - the first time I entered your web site I was left with a spinning clock and no images - not good for impatient people who are trawling the net for images. I also encountered a spinning clock upon entering the gallery - this is not uncommon but annoying.

I have been selling images for a living since 1993, a library of pro sports images. From my experience picture researchers want to get down to the business of searching for images and not be hindered by over-fussy website designs. This has been  confirmed by industry picture researcher surveys, the majority dislike fancy websites - those spinning clocks and frou-frou designs that say as much, if not more, about the designer than the photographer!

In the case of primarily aiming for print collectors, there may be a case for more 'about you' information and additional minor window dressing. It's good that your site takes a minimalist approach but it needs to load faster. I am not keen on your gallery section with the film strip, it takes too long. IMHO better to have quick loading thumbnails (HTML page - not flash) to grab the attention of the viewer and select, in order to display larger previews instantaneously.

Examples http://www.billatkinson.com/Homepage.pl slightly different but quick responding http://www.keithlaban.co.uk/foundpaintings.html - Keith's site is fast - HTML based.

I personally don't like the grey strip across the top of your website and would have one colour as the backdrop - the blurred light grey behind your name doesn't work for me. In addition to the copyright text, I would add a copyright information page - keep it simple.
« Last Edit: September 06, 2011, 05:29:33 PM by Nick Walker » Logged

francois
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« Reply #5 on: September 06, 2011, 04:36:03 AM »
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Beautiful content but the initial slideshow takes ages before starting. As others said, the first impression is what will keep potential customers on you site for more than ten seconds...
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Francois
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« Reply #6 on: September 06, 2011, 11:04:39 AM »
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You have some really gorgeous photos! Bravo.

I would never have guessed it's on Wordpress, and I don't see a need to apologize for that.

I will say that I do not like - in fact, hate - the automatic advance from one photo to the next. When I just get started appreciating the beauty and subtlety of a photo, poof, it vanishes to be replaced by another.

Any way, great work!
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Peter
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View my photos at http://www.peteraitken.com
spreeg
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« Reply #7 on: September 06, 2011, 12:36:29 PM »
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Wow thanks all for your input, this is all great stuff.  I didn't realize how slow it was loading, that's bad as I am one of those impatient people you are talking about who would not wait around.  I will take all this feedback, and when I have time, try to make some changes for the better.

Thanks heaps all,
Cheers
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louoates
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« Reply #8 on: September 06, 2011, 01:33:42 PM »
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I had no issues at all with speed on your site. Or design for that matter. I just installed Google Chrome browser because I was having LOTS of trouble with the latest Firefox and Safari browsers on my Mac reading flash sites and playing some kinds of video.  And I liked most of the images you show especially the landscape work.  My only criticism is that you should think about editing out many of the pet shots.
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kikashi
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« Reply #9 on: September 06, 2011, 04:00:47 PM »
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It's slow to get started, even on my pretty fast (20Mb/sec) broadband. I'm using Safari on 10.6.8.

I spent a while working out how to stop the (far too rapidly changing) slide show, since on my MacBook Pro the thumbnails across the bottom aren't visible and there's no hint that it's even possible to do.

Once I'd managed that, I found that the arrow keys don't work. For me, that's very bad.

Using the thumbnails is tedious: I spent a lot of time clicking on a tiny sliver of the next photo at the right-hand end.

So, FWIW, my view is that this is not a site on which I would wish to spend time, despite the many rather lovely photos. I think you could manage a lot better, perhaps with some help if, like me, you don't fancy HTML coding.

Jeremy
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louoates
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« Reply #10 on: September 06, 2011, 05:43:56 PM »
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From what I read on Google searches regarding browser problems there are huge difficulties with both Firefox and Safari with Macs, mostly dealing with flash based sites. Anyone who is experiencing slow browsing should check out other browsers. For me, after 5 minutes of looking at reviews on line, installed Google Chrome, and got back full functions on all the sites that were giving me problems plus faster speeds of loading images. Arrow keys not working on flash sites and woefully slow image loading (even image overlapping) was exactly the kinds of problems I had with Firefox that was driving me nuts.
« Last Edit: September 06, 2011, 05:45:42 PM by louoates » Logged
Peter Stacey
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« Reply #11 on: September 06, 2011, 11:52:54 PM »
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.. there are huge difficulties with both Firefox and Safari with Macs, mostly dealing with flash based sites. Anyone who is experiencing slow browsing should check out other browsers.

This is very true and these are not the only browsers that have problems. From a user perspective, there are known problems with certain browsers on different platforms and it's worth finding the right browser for the right situation based on your needs.

From a site development perspective however, it is important to ensure reasonable browser compatibility if you want good user experience, because you have to assume that your most important visitor will be using the worst setup.

In this case, while I'm running Chrome on Windows, I also experienced some issues with the speed of loading and could not see the film strip of thumbnails, which were off the bottom of my laptop screen. When I did scroll down to them, the scrolling of the thumbnails doesn't work properly so like kikashi, I only had a small amount right or left to click on.

Everything on the site could be easily handled by HTML and JavaScript. For the simple, uncluttered aspect of this site (which is a big plus), flash really isn't required and for this site, it is a hindrance to good experience (nothing against Flash. I use it in many projects).

Regards,

Peter
« Last Edit: September 06, 2011, 11:57:35 PM by Peter Stacey » Logged

tom b
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« Reply #12 on: September 07, 2011, 01:35:54 AM »
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Examples http://www.billatkinson.com/Homepage.pl slightly different but quick responding http://www.keithlaban.co.uk/foundpaintings.html - Keith's site is fast - HTML based.


Both sites require excessive clicking, most people will stop clicking pretty quickly unless the work is excellent. The advantage of a slide show like Steve's is that images can be preloaded.

I would like to see some information with the slideshows showing where the images were taken.

Cheers,


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kikashi
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« Reply #13 on: September 07, 2011, 02:35:39 AM »
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From what I read on Google searches regarding browser problems there are huge difficulties with both Firefox and Safari with Macs, mostly dealing with flash based sites.
You may well be right but the simple fact is that since I don't see any problems with the vast majority of sites I visit, I tend to assume if a site performs poorly that the problem lies with the site and not with my system. Does that hurt me? Not much. Does it, at least potentially, hurt the site I'm visiting, that's trying to sell me something?

Jeremy
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N Walker
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« Reply #14 on: September 07, 2011, 03:41:43 AM »
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Both sites require excessive clicking, most people will stop clicking pretty quickly unless the work is excellent. The advantage of a slide show like Steve's is that images can be preloaded.

I would like to see some information with the slideshows showing where the images were taken.

Cheers,

'Both sites require excessive clicking, most people will stop clicking pretty quickly unless the work is excellent'.


At Keith Laban's site I have already viewed images before the majority of tedious flash based gallery slide shows have started. I don't want to waste my time viewing images that do not appeal to me during an automatic slide show which laboriously plods from image to image. For those slide shows that enable me to select an image in the thumbnail strip I still have to 'click'. Keith's website is so fast I can click on image thumbnails which appeal to me be done and dusted very quickly.

Web research reveals users feel empowered when they have some control over a website - part of the empowerment is making selections (clicking) - some people prefer/routinely touch products displayed on high street shelves.

If I was a picture researcher or looking for prints, Keith's website (if it also contained an image search facility) would be bliss to navigate in comparison to several flash based gallery slide shows.

'The advantage of a slide show like Steve's is that images can be preloaded.'

Pre-loading wastes my time - every time I open one of Steve's galleries I have to wait each time for pre-loading - not good. HTML slide shows can be made to run fast; first image loads almost instantaneously whilst others are loading - still not as preferable from time management to instantaneous thumbnails and fast previews selected by the user.

« Last Edit: September 09, 2011, 04:17:50 PM by Nick Walker » Logged

JonathanRimmel
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« Reply #15 on: September 09, 2011, 03:18:42 PM »
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I would say your site is simple and it works. I don't think you really needed to use word press to build it however. Being a web designer is one of the many hats I wear, and I can say this would be quite simple to make with css and html. Although word press could help with search engine optimization = more traffic to your site. But this also could be why your website is slower than it has to be. I would also recommend slightly larger text and increased contrast for overall readability.
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