In these days an artist should be very flexible and should be accommodated to the rush of the digital life. Fortunately, WordPress is a godsend to anyone who needs a robust, well built online portfolio, but do not wish to waste time on programming and coding a tasteful and well-functioning one.
In this article we try to help for those who are at the beginning of the road to making their first portfolio, and would like to read a step-by-step guide to make the best out of their web presence. Like our previous article about homepages of public places, this post will also provide you a short, easy-to-follow program to design a brand new site.
1. Collect your materials
Before you start selecting a theme or writing your “About me” text, sit down and spend a few hours on collecting what you are going to publish. These can be the following:
- Visual materials (Your photos, pictures, drawings, sketches, etc)
- Personal data (Your CV, the list of your public performances, publications, story of your life, recommendations from your masters, etc.)
- Personal visuals (A few good photo of you, a werk video, pictures of your albums, model portfolio etc)
- Press presence (Articles, press entries about you)
Try to have colorful, but quality materials. Select your pictures, works very carefully and take your time on scanning and photographing anything you wish to upload.
Keep in mind, that, as you are a creative professional, your website might be the first-line surface on which the potential customers can find you. Therefore, it is very important to keep an eye on what you publish on the site. Your portfolio is not an archive and not a social-media page. Through away all your content which seems to be out-of-date, or you are not completely satisfied with.
It is also very important to keep an eye on copyright issues. Always make sure that you have the rights to upload and publish the materials you have (e.g. ask for permission from the photographer who made your model photos, etc.). On the other hand, make sure that you named all the contributors of your work. This depicts you respectful and trustable.
2. Organize what you have
Now, you know how much materials you have and can clearly see which is the strongest part of your collection. This is the time, when you shall make a raw design.
The next step is quite easy, you need to start organize your materials. Decide how you are going to sort your pictures into albums, in which form you would like to present your CV, how much would you like to write about yourself, etc. (Tips for writing a good article in WordPress.)
Decide what kind of menus you’d like to have on your site. Here is an example for you
- About me
- Contact info
3. Choose a WP theme
Then comes the most entertaining part of the work. Now, you can choose the future look of your WordPress website, the theme.
Fortunately, there are several very impressive WordPress portfolio themes, directly designed for publishing mostly visual materials. The main advantage of these kinds of themes is that they offer a ready-made design which is ideal for pictures. Besides, they have a pre-arranged layout for you, and this guarantees that you won’t miss anything important.
If you are at the very beginning, we recommend you the theme called simply Portfolio. This is a very nice, minimalist webpage with all the functions you’d need. Its clear, easy-to-follow design guarantees that you do not make a mistake.
One of the best WP portfolio themes is Coastline Creative, which is a beautifully designed theme for large images. We recommend this for those, who feel very confident about their taste of webdesign. They’ll make the best out of it.
Fullpane WordPress theme is for those who have a bit of experience with arranging the content. This site does not have as clear and block-like style as the past two, but it gives a good way to present your content without the need several clicks from the visitors.
Business3ree is also a nice choice, especially, when you have a plenty of supplies to offer. These theme is ideal for photo or creative studios, who do not want to present merely their past works, but want to give present their skills and supplies.
4. Finish up and upload
This part requires a bit of patience. Check your choice of theme, and customize it as much as you can. Change the built-in pictures to your own materials if it is possible, modify the color scheme, and resize, reedit everything which is possible and which requires it.
Upload your content and double-check is everything works smoothly. Ask for help from your friends, partners, co-workers - look for typos, broken links, too large pictures, etc.
5. Launch the website
Congratulation, now you have a complete, fully functional website. This is high time to give some popularity to it. Do not hesitate to post your webpage on your Facebook wall, enter your web address to the catalogue sites, print it in your visit card, and display it in the signature of your e-mails.
5+1. Some extras
There are some extra things you can do to have an even more functional website. Let’s see.
- Keep your site fresh. Of course, it is not possible to upload new works if you are in the middle of a project and still have nothing to show. however, by having a Blog, or a little News section on the site, it can help you to avoid looking to static.
- Cross-promote with your partners. Link their websites on your pages where it is relevant (for instance have a link of your photographer’s website under your photo), and ask them to do the same with yours.
- Create a backup for your site. Save all the content you uploaded to a safe place from images to textual parts, and keep it, in case a problem occurs with your server. This makes easier to recover your site, if it is needed.
- Make slight changes on your website if it is needed. If you feel like, follow freshwpthemes.com for more tips, hints, advice.