Author Topic: Hi, I have just made a website and I would love your opinions and feedback  (Read 1026 times)

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Offline OliveTree-Photography

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I am very new to this forum so first of all Hello!

I'm a wedding and events photographer based in London UK and would like some comments on what you think of my website, if their is anything you would recommend to make it better
and your overall opinions on my actual photography

Thanks so much and I look forward to commenting more!

Cihan Aksoy
Wedding and Events Photographer based in London UK

Check out my website: www.olivetree-photography.com

Offline Nanette Reid

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Hi Cihan,

Welcome to PPF! Just had a quick look at the website and made a few notes.

Pros:
  • Love the clean, modern feel of the layout.
  • The "carefree" style of your logo works well with the layout too.
  • It's great to see some BTS images of the day along with the actual couple.
  • A nice start to the wedding group, but I'd remove a few shots as they don't have the "wow" factor. Whilst they are probably nice shots for the family to enjoy, they aren't great choices to showcase your very best work.
  • The events page has a nice mix, maybe group them together in their respective event types (medieval, cars/racing etc).
  • The portraits page also has some nice images, but again, there are some that let the group down.
  • Remember to critique your shots fully and anything that makes you think twice, should be removed - your website is selling YOU and your brand. It should only show the very, very best of your work - anything that falls short needs to be left out. I remember a folio reviewer telling me once, "If you have  folio of 9 "wow" images and one "ho-hum" shot, the entire folio will be judged on that one "ho-hum" image."
  • If in doubt, ask a trusted friend or colleague - i.e.: someone who will tell you straight if it's a great shot, or an ok shot. In fact, dot be afraid to use our critique forum - many of the members ask for feedback on a shot, a group of shots or selection of images being considered for showcasing.
Cons:
  • Front page was rather slow to load - at first I thought it was blank.
  • The moving gif is interesting, but personally I'd stick with a slideshow showcasing your absolute best images (4-6). The lady at the front on the LHS has "stipple" in her skin tones, which doesn't look professional and lowers the tone you are trying to sell - that you are a professional who will produce the most incredible images of your wedding day possible.
  • Might pay to check the colour balance in the second image of the wedding group, as the couple's hair appears to be rather cool, leading to a blue tinge.
  • I'm not fully sold on the colour/B&W mix for a couple of the shots in the events - I understand why you've done them to enhance the flames, but they feel a little gimmicky to me. Perhaps include in the final range of images for the client, but leave them out of the folio.
  • The B&W shot in the events page of the people in a line, needed me to look at 2x to see the eagle to understand what it was all about (it being out of focus and almost out of frame confused me). I then looked at the colour image of the same setting again and finally noticed the eagle at the start. Great idea of capturing this, but it may need a few visits to reshoot and reshoot until you get a great shot that tells the full story. Alternatively, if at all possible, set the shot up to create the experience - ask the event organisers if it's possible, and describe what you wish to achieve.
I'm sure someone more experience in portraiture and weddings will give you advice and tips to help with image selection etc - my area of expertise is architecture. :D

Overall it's a good start. It took me ages to decide on images to select for my own website - and during that process I just made a landing page with an awesome image to give my contact details, before I uploaded the whole lot. That way, I knew that I could take the time to choose (and ask questions of colleagues: leave?, remove?, tweak?, slideshow order ok?, suggestions? etc)

By ensuring each and every image that appears on your site is the absolute best, clients will see that you are a professional with an acute eye for detail who will create outstanding images for their wedding day/event/portraiture session that will make them (or their event) look amazing.

Offline Jeff Behm

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Nanette has nailed it thoroughly and I won't enlarge upon or disagree with her wonderful in-depth response to your request that we look at your website.  I'll only say this: in looking at your website with your application to join TPPF, it's obvious you're serious about what you're doing, so here you are, on the forum. 

If your first reaction to her comments is positive, as in "I can learn from this" great!  That's a huge plus.

If it's negative, just remember, if you choose to learn from comments like these rather than be hurt, ignore them or strike back in defensiveness, it'll be an immense aid in your growth in the profession.  That doesn't mean critique can't be upsetting; it's about how we choose to react, even if we're upset.  We all get it, these images are our babies, and we want to defend them, even if we're wrong.

As Nanette said, overall it's a good start.  Keep growing.

Offline OliveTree-Photography

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haha thanks for the feedback, I do not take it in a negative way at all! on the contrary I opened myself up to critique and that's exactly what I have gotten so far. I have even removed the GIF as the first thing people see as I agree it was too slow to load and there were some weird artifacts. I just thought it was unique and maybe in the future if I take a better one I might put it up. As for the rest of the feedback I have taken it on board and will be adjusting my images in the parts I think need changing and will leave others where I feel it is a difference of opinion.

I really do appreciate the comments so far and thank you for acknowledging that I am serious about my photography.

Keep the feedback coming as it is very helpful!

Cihan Aksoy
www.OliveTree-Photography.com
Wedding and Events Photographer based in London UK

Check out my website: www.olivetree-photography.com

Offline Jenny Gavin-Wear

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Nanette,

Fantastic advice.  This is the sort of posting that could be tweaked only a very little to make a great article.

What I love most about it is your positive tone throughout which is inspiring and motivating.

I wish I'd had such advice when I first came here, it would have been awesome.  I recall feeling like a lamb to the slaughter!  lol

Really good job.


Offline Nanette Reid

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Great start to making changes, Cihan - being able to accept constructive critique is always a great way to improve not only the website, but also your branding and images too.

Jeff's correct when he mentions critique and how we all handle it. I've definitely grown in the profession since starting out, and a lot of it has been due to having my images, ideas, and branding reviewed by both peers and those in the industry who do it as part of their job, to iron out any wrinkles that reduce the impact of my work, thus giving my competition a possible advantage. :D

I had a quick look at your homepage, and the attached image is what I see on Safari. It looks as if you're having cut-off issues, so I'd suggest having a look the page layout, to correct it. For reference, it all looked good yesterday when I had a look, so possibly when you swapped out the gif, something may have gone a little crazy. :)

From experience I would personally put together a single landing page (with a superb image and your contact details) and tweak the site before going "live". By doing so, your potential clients are not going to experience any glitches or errors that detract from your work, as you work through layout etc.

It took me a good three months to put together a website that I was happy to show to potential (and current) clients, and that included shot selection, layout, text and testing. At the end of it all, I then asked colleagues, family and friends to make their way through it, and let me know of any problems, concerns or confusion they experienced, so that I could correct it before unleashing it on the world.

My current site is nothing like my first website, which was flash based and restricted in how I could make changes. The latest one is based on a template I purchased, and I then branded it and made changes to suit. I'm actually looking to change again, following some advice I received from a photo agency; for me, it's the first point of contact from potential clients worldwide, so getting it to look as great as I possibly can, is a top priority.

Look forward to your progress and discussions here too; it's kind of like a "virtual bar", pull up a stool, grab a beer and sit down to shoot the breeze with like minded photographers about a myriad of topics.

Next round's on me!

Offline Nanette Reid

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Nanette,

Fantastic advice.  This is the sort of posting that could be tweaked only a very little to make a great article.

What I love most about it is your positive tone throughout which is inspiring and motivating.

I wish I'd had such advice when I first came here, it would have been awesome.  I recall feeling like a lamb to the slaughter!  lol

Really good job.



Thanks Jenny. Had a lecturer at college who made it a point to critique work and give feedback, both positive and negative, as he felt it made for better results. Guess it has always stuck with me, and I try to pass it on whenever I'm asked to provide feedback.

As Jeff said - our images are our "babies", and it does hurt sometimes when someone doesn't find a shot as "cute" as I do, but if they explain why it's not as "cute" as one of my other "babies", it's definitely easier to take on board, rather than being told its just plain "ugly"! ;)

Not sure how I'd tweak the original response for a short article, but good to keep in mind should I look to do so.

Offline Jenny Gavin-Wear

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Nanette,

Fantastic advice.  This is the sort of posting that could be tweaked only a very little to make a great article.

What I love most about it is your positive tone throughout which is inspiring and motivating.

I wish I'd had such advice when I first came here, it would have been awesome.  I recall feeling like a lamb to the slaughter!  lol

Really good job.



Thanks Jenny. Had a lecturer at college who made it a point to critique work and give feedback, both positive and negative, as he felt it made for better results. Guess it has always stuck with me, and I try to pass it on whenever I'm asked to provide feedback.

As Jeff said - our images are our "babies", and it does hurt sometimes when someone doesn't find a shot as "cute" as I do, but if they explain why it's not as "cute" as one of my other "babies", it's definitely easier to take on board, rather than being told its just plain "ugly"! ;)

Not sure how I'd tweak the original response for a short article, but good to keep in mind should I look to do so.

Good lecturer :)

I noticed we have an Articles section on the forums.  It might be interesting if we all teamed up to create a Good, Bad and Ugly of photography website design?  Your critique would be a great starting point!

Offline OliveTree-Photography

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Re: Hi, I have just made a website and I would love your opinions and feedback
« Reply #8 on: September 05, 2016, 06:05:13 PM »
Hi guys.

Sorry for the late reply I've just come back from holiday!

Thank you all for your input it has helped and if you check back on my website www.olivetree-photography.com you'll see that I have implemented changes where I completely agree with the feedback provided.

I have paired down some of my photos and I have implemented a welcome page to help with any formatting issues.

Thanks again and any further feedback is welcome!

Kind regards

Cihan
Wedding and Events Photographer based in London UK

Check out my website: www.olivetree-photography.com

Offline Jenny Gavin-Wear

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Re: Hi, I have just made a website and I would love your opinions and feedback
« Reply #9 on: September 05, 2016, 07:58:23 PM »

Hi Cihan,

Your site looks awesome, really nice work.

This is really picky, but the title of each genre of work shown at bottom left only shows on the leading image, would it be best to show it on all images in that section?

I still think a wedding site needs to be about weddings and nothing else.

I saw great images on your Instagram that I think would bolster your portfolio.

Nice work! :)

Jenny