|philcha on Oct 3, 2006 at 6:39:33 AM (# 1)|
This message has been edited.
Although, or perhaps because, you're a valuable member of SE, I have to admit I don't like it.
My biggest concern is "What are the site's objectives?" If the main aim is to promote your business, I don't think a blog is a great way to do that:
- It gives the impression that you spend more time pursuing topics that take your fancy than developing your business and mastering techniques that provide value to clients.
- Because the content is constantly changing, it's hard for people to find your site again via the searchies if they've forgotten the exact URL.
- Blog pages tend to be very long (yours is quite long already), and this creates usability problems. For example if I'm reading the 4th entry I have to scroll up quite a few times to see any part of the menu.
There are also some aspects of the design I'm not happy with:
- If JS is switched off (I always check pages for review with JS off first), the top 2 inches of the page are empty. I avoid JS dependence because:
- I often disable JS if a site makes a nuisance of JS and don't enable JS again until I absolutely need to (usually for one or other of my favourite e-commerce sites).
- Most surfers use IE, and they should disable JS for security reasons. In particular, large organisations (= large potential customers) will often tell their system admins to disable JS permanently in all browsers except when reading internal and "trusted" sites.
- When I enabled JS:
- I got an image which said "Please enable JS" (!!!) and was too wide for my screen - I use 800x600 because my eyesight's poor.
- The page took a long time to finish loading - it's just finished now - and while it was loading I couldn't scroll the page (possibly a Firefox problem). At the end all I got was another image (replacing "Please enable JS") which conveyed neither information nor excitement (no ribald comments please!)
- In "An improved image for your company begins here;" you've underlined "here", so I tried to click it and nothing happened. On 99.9% of pages underline means link, and misleading users (even unintentionally) is annoying.
- The font's rather small even at 800x600, and will look smaller at higher res unless the user has a huge monitor (mine is 17"). OK, I can increase the text size easily in FF, but who wants to keep changing the browser's font size?
- I don't like the page title:
The title is important because:
- The capitalisation of "true" - it SHOUTS at me.
- The word "fix" has 2 undesirable connotations - drugs and quick-and-dirty.
- The whole of the title gives the impression of being more concerned with trying to whip up premature excitement rather than giving information.
Can you think of something that's special about your approach to photography and / or web design and put it concisely and without hype?
- It's the first thing the user sees when the page is loading.
- Searchies give high weight to titles.
Sorry for being such a grouch, but as I said you're a valued member of SE and therefore you deserve honesty.
Winterwolf on Oct 3, 2006 at 9:23:59 AM (# 2)
I wholy concur with Philcha (shocker!) except for the following: I do not agree that blog-format is inappropriate. It is something RA wrote herself and shows off her skills. In addition blog-style has become more influential in the professional arena (though I am not a pro I have seen this change more often of late). I think the style is indicative of a more personal less formal attitude which is fine for what RA does.
All that aside RA I noticed one thing immediately that pissed me off about your site. The 400 pixel gap on your page that occurs in IE.60 in the middle column. In fire fox the blog entry reaches the top which is what I would expect. The huge gap in IE is just broken. Also in reference to the scrolling off the page issue, you could make your side bars scroll with the articles so that the reader does not have far to scroll on a small low res monitor.
Over all I like the site aside from the above comments. I too agree you are an esteemed member of our community and as such deserve the utmost honesty and detail from our criticisms. I hope they help. I look forward to seeing more improvements. You are always moving on to the next skill set not content to sit on your laurels which is always gratifying to see. It encourages me to be slightly less lazy. Anyway until next time "All your base are belong to me!" :D
ctcrmcou on Oct 3, 2006 at 9:34:12 AM (# 3)
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First the good news,
I love your artistry with the photographs and color selections. It is your strong suit. You can find the balance of color and shapes in each image, so you have a skill there. Even your layout is nice, just until you have to try and sort it all out (as a viewer).
As for the suggestions for improvement,
you've underlined "here", so I tried to click it and nothing happened
As philcha said. Worse than a standards mistake, it makes me think that something should be there since it's so blatent, but since there isn't I question if the site is functioning.
Personally, I think it's too about you with all the photos, and not enough about what you can do for your clients. Perhaps images of you with clients..... And the images are WAY to big. Imagine smaller screen resolutions, the images can still be beneficial at half their height.
Also, there are too many styles and fonts going on. It makes it hard to figure out what is important and where the eye should be lead. Simplify the important topics, and let them open to their own pages.
I hope the feedback helps and does not discourage.
RobinAnn on Oct 3, 2006 at 9:38:52 AM (# 4)
That's a great amount of criticism. I mean great:
great Pronunciation [greyt] - plural greats, (especially collectively) great, interjection –adjective
||unusually or comparatively large in size or dimensions|
Keep it coming.... you bunch of greats :P
ctcrmcou on Oct 3, 2006 at 9:41:50 AM (# 5)
This message has been edited.
Where's the flash??????
Here's an idea, you're links can activate the flash from your camera that blanks out the screen, and the new page quickly fades in (like a print developing).
No, tough love.