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Old    Bess Marine (xtremebordgurl)      Join Date: Dec 2002       04-16-2007, 8:00 PM Reply   
Hey guys, for school we need to create a professional photo website. Mine is still a work in progress but I'm wondering what your thoughts are so far and if anyone has any suggestions or tips on things I can do better.

www.bessmarine.com

thanx for all your help guys!
Old    Scott (scott_a)      Join Date: Dec 2002       04-16-2007, 10:12 PM Reply   
in the personal section: stoping should read stopping.

your BMP logo at the top of each page isn't in the same spot in each of the sections.
Old    Preston Hall (phall925)      Join Date: Feb 2005       04-17-2007, 7:04 AM Reply   
1. Chnage the background to black and see how that works

2. On the Bio section have the paragraphs more compact in the center of the page not spead out at the bottom stretching the width of the page. Maybe insert a few pistures in the paragraphs of the bio. Just a thought

3. The site looks great
Old    Swami (swami)      Join Date: Apr 2006       04-17-2007, 11:55 AM Reply   
needs the home page to work.

I would create a template that is used on each page and leave the body open for your content.

Content is king with websites. If you have good content, people will browse it.
Old    Bess Marine (xtremebordgurl)      Join Date: Dec 2002       04-17-2007, 5:29 PM Reply   
thanx for all the feedback guys, I really appreciate it, Swami, can you elaborate, what do you mean by leave the body open? Any tips on creating a good template?
Old    Jed (gehennaengine)      Join Date: Jun 2005       04-17-2007, 8:07 PM Reply   
Bess, good photos first of all. Secondly, how comfortable are you with web design? Most hosting companies will support PHP scripting. I've used this language quite a bit and there isn't much you can't do with it. Google around for "php header footer" and you will probably find a few examples of how to use this language to template your site. Basically, you put the top half of your page in one file and the bottom half in another. Then, when you create a new page on your site all you do is include the header/footer files on each page. The coolest thing about this approach is you only have to change two files to update the entire look/feel of your site. Email or PM me if you have questions or need help.
Old    Swami (swami)      Join Date: Apr 2006       04-18-2007, 8:57 AM Reply   
hey Bess:

In programs such as Dreamweaver, you create a layout using tables. That way you have a area for your menu items and your "body" of the page where content will go.

When you create a new page, you create it using the template and then punch in your content in the body of the page. This keeps your pages consistent in look and your content doesn't hop around as you move from page to page.

It might be a little old school web design but I feel if your content shifts around a lot, you lose you flow and feel.

What are you using to design your pages?

Even if it's not dreamweaver, you can create a layout and then save that and call it template and open it up for each page and save it as a different name when you add your content for that page.

-S
Old    Jed (gehennaengine)      Join Date: Jun 2005       04-18-2007, 1:47 PM Reply   
The problem with this "old school" method of design comes to light when you need to update the site. You are stuck changing EVERY page. Do a little reading, use a header/footer and a central CSS file to apply your theme. Do a little research upfront, put some thought into your site and it will save you a ton of headache down the road.

If you are serious about web design, stay away from WYSIWYGs like dreamweaver until you understand what is going on in the background. If you just want to bang out a site and forget about it, then dreamweaver is a good (although expensive) tool.

Or, you cuould just tell us geeks to float rocks and keep on keepin' on. Either way, you have a great site and, most importantly, good photos to display on it.
Old    Swami (swami)      Join Date: Apr 2006       04-19-2007, 10:16 AM Reply   
Actually with Dreamweaver's templates, you just need to update your template and it will update your entire site. Also you can use includes just as well in HTML for header and footers.
Old    Jed (gehennaengine)      Join Date: Jun 2005       04-19-2007, 10:29 AM Reply   
That's a cool feature. It's still a waste of money in my opinion (VI works fine) but that's just me - bah, humbug.
Old    Bess Marine (xtremebordgurl)      Join Date: Dec 2002       04-19-2007, 12:29 PM Reply   
*let me just preface this with I knew NOTHING before going to Hallmark*

at the begining of this year they taught us basic html and arround jan we started using dreamweaver, and just this past week got into using premade templates and fav icons. I asked one of the web instructors about php and he said we would be getting into it in the next few weeks.

Before Hallmark I never had any interest in web design but I do enjoy working on my website, even though its extremely difficult for me. So i guess in the grand scheme of things I'm at a very basic level of web understanding. So I really do appreciate all this feedback, I'm learning a lot!
Old    Scott (scott_a)      Join Date: Dec 2002       04-19-2007, 1:57 PM Reply   
Keep in mind that in the real world when a prospective customer looks at your website, they see exactly that- the website. They don't know how skilled you are with dreamweaver, nor do they care. If your website doesn't look nicely polished they might just move on to the next photographer.

Just something to keep in mind...I'm sure that you're just learning and will continue to polish your site with time. Good luck!

(Message edited by scott_a on April 19, 2007)
Old    Jed (gehennaengine)      Join Date: Jun 2005       04-19-2007, 2:37 PM Reply   
Just keep at it Bess. Don't put a hard stop on your site development. Try new things and break stuff. Like photography, web design is learned through a combination of theory and trial/error.
Old    Bess Marine (xtremebordgurl)      Join Date: Dec 2002       04-21-2007, 6:35 AM Reply   
scott a, good point. I think I'm going to try messing arround with editing some pre-made templates and see how that goes just so i can get something that looks a little more substantial. Thanks again everyone, this has been really helpful.

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