Artist's portfolio and showcase website
- Case study by John
- October 14th, 2010
richardprice.nl is essentially the online presence of the sculptural glass artist, Richard Price. It exists to showcase his artwork and the things he does for everybody interested (from the public to other artists to everybody inbetween).
Richard has had a website for several years now, but found that he required several new features to take advantage of the modern web. The old website contained a gallery showcasing his work, contact information, and a biography and CV. With the new website, he wanted several new features to be included on top of the already existing features. These included
- Links to related and relevant websites
- Twitter & Facebook
- A gallery split into several sections / categories, as well as a new gallery of 'at work' images
- Blog (or a place to keep people updated about his ongoing work)
- Price guide
Because Richard's primary audience live in the Netherlands, the site also had to be bilingual and present information in both English (default) and Dutch where possible, with the visitor being able to switch between languages seamlessly.
The final requirement which was decided was that the aesthetic design had to be attractive, classy, and easy to navigate. The previous website made use of frames and Flash for navigation, which impeded use of the back button and search engine accessibility. With the new site, a semantic, compliant approach would be taken and utilised.
The site makes use of several third party services for some of the site functions. The site itself does not use a database to store information - all information is stored statically as hard-coded HTML. Only the pages powered by third party services contain any dynamic content at all.
The various sections of the site have been grouped together into groups. For example, the biography, CV and links pages have been grouped together under the about section. These groupings allow for both logical and uncluttered navigation, not overloading the visitor with a large navigation structure on every page. The about section is entirely static in content, with updates rare.
The blog section is powered by Blogger, with a custom stylesheet to match the style of the blog with the style of the site (for seamlessness).
The video section displays videos and playlists from Richard's YouTube account, either playable on that page or with links back to the original YouTube video page. Hosting the videos on YouTube has two advantages; bandwidth and hosting is sorted by them (with optimised versions for a multitude of devices), and a large audience who may not encounter Richard's work normally. The downside of using YouTube for this type of thing is the use of adverts on the videos. In this case, the benefits outweigh the drawbacks.
Lastly, the calendar page utilises Google Calendar to display a calendar of Richard's upcoming public schedule to those who might be interested in it. Using Google Calendar also allows for more integration with others who use the service (such as events to their schedule).
Richard's new site is a relatively basic website, requiring more from the design and aesthetics over complicated functionality. Richard wanted a 'classy' website to showcase his work, and agrees that the design I implemented has worked. The use of serif fonts, lots of whitespace and the use of imagery sparingly has proven effective in achieving this requirement. Of course, aesthetics are completely subjective - some may not agree that this is 'classy'.