I relaunched my portfolio site with a new theme and fueled it with my "Become an art director blog" - here the thoughts behind it. In the beginning of this year I have relaunched my portfolio site because the old one didn't give me the possibility to show my work. The new site was based on wordpress but I wanted it to look different from all the blogs you find on the net. Something more stylish. So I started hacking into a premium theme and adapting it to my needs.
It looked cool but after a few month I looked at the analyitcs data and it was clear that I had to change something. Here some of the main problems I've found.
- The navigation looked great but was a User expirience desaster. You really had to look for the "details" link
- Only half of the visitors where willing to go to the portfolio section - There was no "new on the site" section
- The fluid design made it difficult to place text in a legible way
- The theme was not really easy to maintain - too many custom variables, Special html for the lightbox, html structure really bad and therefore bad interaction with plugins
- There was not enough new content regularly to make people come back again
After seeing all these problems the solution was to join the blog (the fresh content you are reading is from this blog) with the portfolio site and choosing a design which fixes the problems.
With the new design I have the possibility to showcase the portfolio directly on the homepage with a slideshow and a list of the latest blogposts. This way the visitor has a sneak peak into the sections of the site.
The "Become an art director lessons" have also received a revamped section (so if you missed some lesson go ahead now and start reading here). I hope the new design helps accessing and consuming the content of this site better - I will keep you updated about the results.