New Website design and New "Photos Only" Blog
I finally got some time this week to deal with something on my website that’s bothered me for a while. I haven’t really been happy with the overall design of my main photography page, that is the landing page when you just type in my web address. I had been directing it to my Photoshelter portfolio, which was fine but it didn’t really cover what I do overall. It is fine as a portfolio front page, but it didn’t mention my writing or Lightroom presets, which are both becoming an increasing part of my services. I wanted to create a good, eye-catching landing page to create a good first impression and also to better get across what I do.
I had a Squarespace account that I had used before but wasn’t using it at the moment and I’d been playing around with some of the themes on it. I found one that was working well for what I wanted to do, but I had been only playing around with it. Well, this week I finally got to give it the attention I needed to and after a surprisingly short amount of work (about a day) I was ready to launch the new home page.
The other thing I’ve wanted to do for a while is have a second, “Photos only” blog which just focussed on images. This blog (which remains unchanged) has sort of evolved into its own beast, with a lot of Lightroom tips and X-trans coverage. Which is fine, but I wanted to do a minimal blog that just showcased pure photography (sorry Nikon). With Squarespace that was pretty easy to do, in fact you can have as many blogs as you want (I think). You can see the new blog here, and don’t forget to subscribe to the rss feed for regular updates!
The one other thing I got to do was to finally use my new .photography domain. My old domain maps to it and should be seamless. The only problem is that some browsers still don’t recognise the domain properly and will re-direct you to a search page when you type it in (if you don’t include the http://) rather than going there directly, but it’s the first result anyway.
If you’re looking to design or build a photography site, I have to say, I’m pretty impressed with Squarespace. I had used it before but found it slow, however all those issues seem to have been resolved. A lot of things are much faster and easier to do now than Wordpress. Uploading images is substantially faster. The only thing that really bugs me about it is that the domain mapping is a bit flakey. You can have your own domain, but internally it uses a Squarespace domain (in my case tomfitzphoto.squarespace.com) - however it doesn’t hide this very well much of the time, so you might share a link and it will go to the internal domain rather than your custom domain. It’s not that big a deal as the content is all the same, it just looks unprofessional not having your own domain in the address bar. Like I said, it’s not that big a deal, but I wish they’d fix it.