Artists, whether a painter, cartoonist, graphic artist or jack of all trades have one thing in common: they need a great portfolio for their art. While they have a physical portfolio, an online portfolio is also essential. They are creating art in a digital world and know having a website is the best way to get the word out. Not only that, if they are in an upcoming show and a press release is written, there can be a link in that press release leading straight to their website and online portfolio. Here are some important tips to keep in mind when designing artist websites.
1. Avoid Advertising
Other websites may be looking to may a little money from advertisements, but it hurts an artist website. They have the website to allow for showcasing their work and taking advantage of SEO, but having pop-ups, banners and ads takes away from how serious and professional of an artist they are. It becomes far too distracting from the work they are trying to show their visitors.
2. Incorporate Social Media
One unique advantage artists have in this media-driven society is that social media can actually help them. If they paint a new piece, they can take a picture on Instagram and share it with potentially millions of people. This is great for their reputation and getting a larger fan base. If the artist uses Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, or other social media sites, make sure you make it accessible on their website.
3. The Portfolio
The digital portfolio should include clear and detailed images of their artwork. Giving visitors options of how to view the portfolio is also helpful, such as being able to click on a slideshow, on each image individually or by category. Some artists work on a lot of different projects, which is when categories and styles come in handy. Others want their page to be more flashy with a nice slideshow or flash-driven media to show off their work. For an artist portfolio, their best and most recent work should always be shown first.
4. Don’t Include Too Much Text
Artists are showing their work, not talking about it. While they should have a bio page, statement, and contact info, don’t go overboard on the front page. The front page should have no more than 300 words and be more like a summary of the artist, what they are working on and other essential information. Provide links for other pages that include more information, like their bio page.
5. Avoid Gimmicks
Finally, while a slideshow for their portfolio images is great, avoid other media gimmicks. Don’t have a lot of flash, audio, video or plug-ins all over the website. It is far too distracting and really takes from the mood they are trying to set for their work.
An Artist website design should reflect the style of art they are portraying in their work. Try to gain inspiration from their work when deciding on a color scheme and theme.