Designing your Website

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by Richard Collingridge

 Over the last couple of months, I have, amongst other things, been trying to re-build my website in html. In the past I have used Flash, and a flash website in general will take me about 4-5 days to complete if I have an idea about what I would like to do before-hand!

The trouble with flash websites, is that they take too long to load, and aren't the easiest things to update, as you have to recreate the flv (flash video file) every time you update. The latter is less important, but the first reason is very important as art directors (from publishing companies) or producers (film, games) will have thousands of different illustrators to look through at any one time, and if they are waiting 5 minutes for your site to load, they will most likely close it and move on to the next illustrator who has a site that opens up quickly or put your site on a different tab while they look at other illustrators and end up completely forgetting about your work!

So the solution was to build a site in html….err that didn't go as planned! It's impossible to DIY an html site, even in dreamweaver, especially with what I wanted to do. So I asked someone to do it for me for free (of course, as I'm an illustrator) which equals poor, unless your Alan Lee or Quentin Blake!

The problem with asking someone to do something for free is that you can't have a go at them if they don't deliver within the two week deadline you set them…so instead, here I am two months later with still no new website.

I tried to build the website using one of those templated style things but they're so restrictive.  If you're in any way visual, you'll want to have control over the way things work and look on your site, and you can't with templated sites (I don't know if templated is a word)….Then, it struck me, the best way to have control of the way someone looks at your work is if you provide them with a linear path, and the best way to do that is to do it via video…in this case via video via youtube! On top of that, youtube tends to load fast EVEN if the file is relatively big. (having said that, this probably won't load now :)

I still, really, really, need to get my new website out there, but until then I have my showreel.

Picture credit: An Untrained Eye

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