4 Tips For Creating A Stunning Photography Online Portfolio
The rules of showing photography online differ slightly than what’s best for print and it can be confusing if you’re starting from scratch. An online portfolio has a different look and feel than a regular website. Notice how most websites have a few common elements – a header, some sort of menu or navigation underneath, in some cases a sidebar and at the bottom a footer. However with photography websites you can completely disregard these ‘rules’ regarding the structure. Do whatever feels right and in your opinion makes your pictures look better.
Still, your website should have some structure with these three main sections:
- The gallery
- A contact page
- (Optional) An about page
It sounds pretty straight-forward, right? It may seem simple but as soon as you start the portfolio creation process questions start popping up:
How big should the pictures be?
Is it a good idea to compress them?
Should I use HTML5 or Flash?
Should I include a slideshow?
How many photos should I post?
In this post we’re going to address these questions and some tips on how to easily set up things.
1. Consider Who Is Going To View Your Photos
It’s important to attract the type of clients you want, so depending on your niche you should create the proper image. If you’re a wedding photographer for example you’ll have to make your portfolio using white and bright colors, maybe flowers. This way it reflects the type of work you’re doing and complements it nicely.
On the other hand if you’re a fashion photographer, your portfolio should reflect that. It sounds simple and obvious but you may be surprised at how bad some people are in showcasing their work.
2. Draw a Layout
Think of how the different elements should fit together and where you want them on the page. This includes color themes, icons, typography, etc. This is the first thing you should do even before you grab the mouse.
3. Add Support for Dynamic Content
Lets say you want to embed your Flickr stream as a part of your portfolio. It’s pretty good looking with 12 pictures but what will happen if there are more like 22 or 38? How are things going to look like with even number of pictures and odd number? You don’t want it to look crowded so a number around 12 is a good compromise.
4. Try to Keep the Contrast High
In most cases and with most types of photos it’s usually the best solution to view them against a black background. Black provides a nice contrast which helps to make the photo seem more vivid with popping colors. A good idea if your overall design is dark is to add a little splash of color somewhere, like your logo for example. It makes it look more personal and professional.