Planning Your Website
To get the best ideas for your website, a great way is to select a sample site we have done before, and tell us what you like (or don’t like) about it. We also have a big list of other artist’s websites you can use for inspiration.
Telling us about two or three sources of inspiration is usually the best way to begin. That will help narrow down choices like image sizes, fonts, if you want thumbnails or cover pages, et cetera.
Alternatively, we can also work from Photoshop – or even hand drawn – mockups, if that’s easier for you.
We have had lots of experience, and are available for as much or as little design input as you would like!
Tip: Think about other artists or galleries that have similar career aspirations or practices to you.
Do you have a domain name already? If you don’t, this guide will help you get a good one.
If you do already, you should still read it! It will also tell you how to get all set up to get started.
Let us know which menu items you would like on your site. We recommend 3-7 in total, as it’s best to keep things simple.
Your menu items might include some of the following:
- Works, Portfolio, New Work, organized by media (Painting, Drawing, Photography), or by year (2004, 2003, 2002), organized by Exhibition title, or of Body of Work titles.
- About, Profile, CV, Resume, Biography, Statement, or Texts (usually different words for the same thing).
- Comments, Links, Blog, News, or Store (any optional sections).
- Representation, Contact (how people can contact you).
Tip: Try not to have several ‘levels’ of menus (eg. Painting > 2004 > … ), as this can be disorientating to the viewer, is more work to update, and a disincentive to explore your site. It is best to keep everything accessible from the front page.
Think about the extras you might want to add. The most popular are web statistics (see who and where from people visit your site), fancy email addresses, encrypted email addresses, or perhaps a blog. Chat to us for more info on any of these. Extras can be added at any time.
Note: Cover pages and a logo are included free with every website.
Preparing Your Images
Somewhere around 25 – 40 images is an ideal number of images to send us – enough to fill each of your category pages, but focused enough so you can have your site ready quickly. If you need to send more it’s fine, although keep in mind it’s also good to keep some until later, so you can learn to use your site while this is all fresh.
Please send the final images you want on your site. After we start, we can adapt if you want to make small changes, but these should really occur when you are ready to take over your website.
Images are at the center of your site, so more info about the most successful image preparation follows.
We prefer most images to be sent as jpegs at 72 dpi (=72 ppi) – with the smallest dimension (height or width) at 495 pixels. This will give you a file which is likely around 200kb to 500kb in size – perfect for emailing and the web.
These are all a setting you will easily find on most image software and image resizing websites (see below).
If you would like a single large feature image, or want to read more about image sizes, click here.
How Do I Edit My Images?
There are many different types of PC or Mac software available to crop, rotate, and resize your images. We use and recommend Photoshop (GIMPshop is a free version, with many of the same functions).
However, if you aren’t already familiar with these types of programs, it is probably simplest to use one of the free, online photo editors. Some recommended ones are below (Google ‘online image resizer’ for others).
Tip: Some people don’t know that .jpg files deteriorate every time you re-save them. This is because they are compressed each time (like photocopying a photocopy). Keep untouched master copies in a stable format (a good one is .tif), then edit and send .jpg copies of these.
Naming Your Image Files
To maximize your results for image searches, and to preserve your authorship when people download your images to their computers, we recommend that you make your image file titles follow this format:
‘Work-title’ should be as much of the title as you can fit into a standard title length (under 33 characters).
This also helps us when we are building your site – to match the work details to the right image.
You can easily email us your images – they are ‘sized for the internet’ so they will not be too big to send.
It is ideal if you can send your images attached to emails with the subject title as the appropriate website menu item they appear under. eg. all your drawings could be attached to an email entitled “Drawings”, Paintings could be in an email called “Paintings”, 2004 works in “2004” – or however else you’d like your website arranged.
This way, it’s easy to keep track of what’s been sent, and what hasn’t.
Tip: If it is important to you, let us know what image order you want on the page. Otherwise you can also easily change and reorder your images yourself later on.
Your Work Details
For ease of entry, it is best to organize your work details into two or three ‘fields’, or lines of text. Speak to us if you want more information why this is.
A good example might be:
Work Title, Year, Media and dimensions.
Tip: Send all of your work details in one text document if at all possible (Word or RTF). It’s an easy way to avoid confusion. Fancy spreadsheets are often more trouble than they are worth!
What Else Should I Supply?
(1) The email address you’d like as your website’s contact address (this needs not be visible, if you prefer).
(2) Any text information, like CVs or biographies. These can be sent in the one one single file with all your work details.
(3) Please read our Terms and Conditions, or email us further about anything you wish to chat about the above.
(4) If you would like a sneak peek of what your dashboard and edit pages will look like (lots of people are curious!) it will look something like this.
Good luck preparing and sending in all of the above. Remember – we’re here to help or merely to give advice if you need it.
Once you’re done, enjoy the great feeling of being absolutely organized! Once your time slot begins, you shouldn’t need to do much else until we ask you for final review, usually in approximately three weeks.