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  1. #1
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    just made a website

    www.matkolbeck.com

    wanted to get some feedback if you dont mind. kinda hard to find tiny issues when you have tunnel vision for looking at the same code for a few days.


    also im planning on making a links pages soon, so if anyone wants their link on my site id be more then happy to add ya.


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  3. #2
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    Looks good.

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  5. #3
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    Try to avoid making the visitor use the Back button when viewing the images. At least include a "return" link to the gallery (always in the same place on the screen) and if possible add a feature to move between images without returning to the gallery.

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  7. #4
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    Like it, simple and does the job.

    I'd move the bio more towards the end of the menu bar - it's not as important as the work, but that's just a nitpick.

    Edit: ^BI makes good points, that didn't bug me personally as I have a 5 button mouse with two set for "back/next" but it might be nice for everyone else if it's not too hard to code.

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  9. #5
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    good point,

    does anyone know how to code that? that always bugs me too but i have no clue how to do that

  10. #6
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    It's very user friendly and that's a big plus. Some things you might want to consider:

    1) Put you name, email and website on each of your images. If a potential employer saves an image out you will want them to have a way to remember this is your work. Don't put a big watermark stamp on it. Just something simple at the bottom.

    2) I've never been a fan of a cropped thumbnail. It changes the composition of your work and have you ever been disappointed when you see the full image? I eschewed (I can't believe I just used that word) thumbnails altogether for my site. I wanted to make it as easy as possible without having to bother the user to click, wait for popup or click the back button on their browser. Loading the image in the browser is totally fine, but some would say it takes the user out of the experience of your site. Take a look at Massive Black's corporate website - no clicking, just scrolling.

    3) Those life drawings are fantastic!

    good luck!
    Last edited by RogerAdams; August 25th, 2008 at 02:51 AM.

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  12. #7
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    Baron_Impossible's suggestion isn't possible without coding a page for each of your images (within which you would code the img and links).

    Portrait2 in Fine Art has a border. Port1 is huuuge.

    I like the idea of having all the art thumbs on one page (with Illustrations/Concepts/Fineart dividers), but that's just personal preference. I like the simple layout, but I'm not a huge fan of the header image. It's weird how it looks so 3D, but then it just cuts off at the ends (it's not a self-contained img) and the text is flat without some sort of emboss... The theme of it isn't carried into anything else either.

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  14. #8
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    ah crap thought i had found all of the big pictures. there were a few even bigger then port1.

    i have plans to make some sort of animation, but most likely wont cause its not necessary.

    i wanted something more then just text up top, but if its annoying rather then helping then i'll take it down.

  15. #9
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    Actually you don't need a page per image (my site has only one image page) but this involves some coding, e.g. PHP. If your server is PHP enabled then you could try to code just your image page in PHP but I suspect this wouldn't be easy if you've never done programming before.

    It's not the end of the world, it was just a suggestion, your site does the job OK at the moment. It's the sites that take 20 clicks to get to a picture that I can't stand!

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  17. #10
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    Just download a free JS lightbox script, it pretty easy to get working and user friendly.

    This uses prototype so its probably a little impracticle size wise, but I know there are lightweight alternatives.

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  19. #11
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    a few things

    not meaning to critique your web design skills but a few suggestions

    1. banner doesn't blend in with the rest of the page, www.tutorialized.com

    check photoshop - web graphics

    you can make a nice banner in a few minutes

    the name of the site is missing

    2. resolution should be 800px X 600PX for people with low resolution monitors

    or just get a css fluid site layout and edit it to your own needs but I found that fluid layouts don't really suit sites with images.

    3. I would put the bio as the home page, with your personal info and some of your best work in

    4. check for online galleries google free image galleries

    that is really it. the aim of the site is the show case your work and at the moment I don't think you have achieved it

    I have a large image on the first page of the gallery with thumbs around it so that people will at least see 1 full image.

    remember people are lazy when using the web
    SKETCHBOOK

    "There aren't any shortcuts. You've got to dig in – study and draw the world around you. This is the only way to hone your skill and develop a style that is your own". GREG CAPULLO

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  21. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr.Otsredir View Post
    i have plans to make some sort of animation, but most likely wont cause its not necessary.

    i wanted something more then just text up top, but if its annoying rather then helping then i'll take it down.
    Animation IN the portfolio, or animation AS the portfolio website? If it's the latter.....noooooo! Animation is cool the first time and then annoying to sit through again and again. It is also more obnoxious to update...which means you won't.

    It's not that you shouldn't have a header at all...it's just that (as tomwaits4noman mentioned) it doesn't fit with the rest.


    Quote Originally Posted by Baron Impossible View Post
    Actually you don't need a page per image (my site has only one image page) but this involves some coding, e.g. PHP
    PHP still creates a (temp) page for each image. What I was trying to say was you cannot put links on what is just an img file.

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  23. #13
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    im working on a new header now. i made one and after i was done realized i had made it too small and the resolution is too low and its bully when made bigger.

    imma try to get that light box thing to work, but alas im a noob and its confusing me. gonna have to wait till my girlfriend can take a look.

  24. #14
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    I wouldn't have an image based header at all. You want your illustrations to be as prominent as possible, not competing with an image in the header.

    I agree with putting the bio on the home page and contact info on every page.

  25. #15
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    Few Observations,

    1. Try to use text instead of images for the header and links in general. Search engines can't index an image for their search database and you lose any visibility that the text can give you in a search. Also it doesn't degrade gracefully if someone happens to be using a browser that isn't capable of showing the header or if they happen to be using a PDA or anything similar to view your site. I'm not joking about the PDA thing either, I've had people visit my site on PDA's and if all my navigational elements were images or image maps, it would be clunky or downright impossible to move around the site.

    2. Don't just think about the frontend look of your site, think about the backend as well. How are you going to update the website in the future, is the process easy, or does it require you building a page, coding by hand every new link, etc? Look into a CMS (Content Management System) or a photo gallery software package that can handle all of the nitty gritty for you. Then all you need to do is design the templates that establish the look of the site and the backend software will handle all of the updating and organizing of the content. Nothing will kill your motivation to update your website faster than having to go through a 15 step process for one image. This also applies to making sitewide changes in the future in case anything needs to be fixed or updated.

    3. Be careful about offering your email address out in the open. Either hide it in a contact form or use a javascript solution that can mask it from the spambots bull still allow users to click on it. Spambots scour the internet for that stuff, and before you know it, you'll have 15000 emails about how to enlarge your penis and buy pills online.

    Honestly, there's a million more things could be refined, but as a design and navigation, it's simple, which is good, although the look could be unified a bit better and the design made just a bit easier to navigate around, but I think possibly the biggest step in the right direction for you, if you haven't done it already, is setting up a CMS or photo gallery that can handle your templates and your artwork for you, then all you need to do is update it through the software.

    Also, there are plenty of resources online, but look into web design blogs, HTML, CSS, and best practices for webdesign. Throw these terms into google and read up on what professional webdesigners have to offer that will make your site function in all the web browsers appropiately. In our day and age, learning how to do this website crap properly is only a plus on our side.

    If you have any questions, feel free to PM me.

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  27. #16
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    (Wow, Nate...your "I don't like your browser" spiel on your website is pretty snotty! No need to browse further for sure...)

  28. #17
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    thanks nate. i'll look into that.

    on a side note i just updated the site, so if theres another round of critiques lets have em.

    still working on getting the lightbox thing to work, but alas im still a noob.

  29. #18
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    Mr.Otsredir,

    please accept few word of my advice.

    What I like:

    1. Its a start. Intro image looks promising. Not in my style, but that's does not matter.

    What I don't like:

    1. Think again about layout, both intro page and other pages. No matter how good art is, website feel and look is the first impression. Remember, first 30 seconds matter a lot. At the moment it looks, sort of, unfinished...

    2. Try to incorporate menu and page titles into layout. Also at the moment menu lettering is outrageous. Its just 80s like style. Sorry for that, but that's how it is.

    3. With browsing images, try to not throw out viewer from your site. Its very inconvenient.

    4. Link "links" does not fit anywhere, its out of concept at all. Think if you need it at all and what for. Also contact is not necessary the most important link, can be smaller. If somebody in interested in contacting you, they will find it anyway.

    5. Personally I don't like closeup thumbs. Remember viewer choice is based what thumb looks like. With such a close ups you discourage viewer to actually view the images, for instance when I look in "fine art" section, my first impression was you paint only peoples noses. Good image always works in both thumb and full resolution version. Make it work for you.

    6. Say few words about you, your work etc. Make this website touch more personal, not just stone like business card.

    Please, don't take my crit too harsh. Its not easy to make good looking website, people make money out of that. You are in right direction, just put some more thought. Dont be afraid to start from scratch again.

    Regards,

    K.Polak

  30. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mirana View Post
    (Wow, Nate...your "I don't like your browser" spiel on your website is pretty snotty! No need to browse further for sure...)
    It's just a warning that some things may be out of whack or look funky. It should still work in IE6, but the pain in the ass that IE6 is and the fact that about 5 people visit my site on that browser, it was just a headsup that better browsers are available. But I'll look into rewording it into something nicer

  31. #20
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  32. #21
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    Mr.Otsredir: The header's text looks pixelated and stretched. The "links" just looks tacked on.

    I do like that you have a representation of your art on the first page...but I feel like the header is far and away from that. It says to me that your art is maybe industrial or futuristic. It also looks pretty beginnerish and that certainly doesn't fit your work at all. The header should reflect the art! Hell, use some of your art to MAKE the header if you have to!

    Also, who's art is this? What kind of artist are they? Think of a business card you'd give to someone...wouldn't it have your art with your name (or studio) and what you did? "Fine Artist, concepts and illustration..." etc!

    The new thumbs look great (although some are stretched or squashed to fit the size and you might consider using black bars to maintain the ratio of your images). Glad to see you figured out lightbox.


    Quote Originally Posted by Blackhawk View Post
    It's just a warning that some things may be out of whack or look funky.
    LOL, I understand the intent...but when it's a msg for only those users to see, it doesn't help to be overly patronizing. People KNOW there are other browsers.

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