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View Full Version : Web address change - would love your feedback


Shriner
01-23-2001, 08:10 AM
I have put my website through massive changes and it is still under heavy construction (one of the many reasons I haven't been around much, lately). What better group of people to critique it then the Digital Folks here?

If you have the time...
www.timguthrie.com (http://www.timguthrie.com)

that URL will take you to the actual site

Thanks! Hope all is going well with each of you, and sorry I didn't have time to read through the threads while I was here.

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Shriner

yiotta
01-23-2001, 09:59 AM
Tim,

OK, since you asked...

It's absolutely gorgeous! Wow!!! Double wow even!!! I'd seen your previous website, I think, and this design seems PERFECTLY appropriate to your work! Great design job!

One quick suggestion, if I may -- I don't know what your plans are for navigating through the images, and this may not be appropriate for your site -- can't tell yet, but if possible, (personal preference coming here -->) I always like to be able to click on a "next" button to page through the large versions of images instead of what most people seem to do (which is click on thumbnail, bringing up large image, leaving you to have to click on browser's "back" button to return to where you started, then click on next thumbnail to bring up next large image -- makes me tired just thinking about it -- I've seen many otherwise wonderful sites designed with that particular kind of tedious navigation, and I usually get tired of the whole extra clicks process and move on to a different site -- I'm making it my web mission to get people to change that, so, take that bit of 'advice' with a grain of salt, I guess). Just a suggestion, though...

Back to your website http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/smile.gif -- the buttons on the left do work, but nothing happens when I click on the circles at the bottom...I guess that part's not ready yet?

Also, the whole of your page only fills my screen halfway down -- I know this is probably the most difficult decision to make when designing a website, but for those of us who have high-resolution monitors, it looks a little silly to have to scroll that small bit of text when half the screen is blank. I don't know what you should do about it, but just thought I'd mention it as something that bothers me. It kinda looks like you designed the left side for an 800x600 resolution, and the right side for a 640x480 res.; maybe you could at least extend the right half to go as low as the left? Hmmm...

And, in case you weren't aware of this, most people now either use 800x600 resolution or 1024x768. Of course, I don't know exactly who your audience is -- that one little fact could change the whole picture, so to speak...

Aren't you glad you asked http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/wink.gif -- I'll shut up now.

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Marilyn

www.inforapenny.com (http://www.inforapenny.com)

"The object isn't to make art, it's to be in that wonderful state which makes art inevitable."
- Robert Henri

Grace
01-23-2001, 11:49 PM
I am no expert....don't even have a website of my own... (too lazy, but have been on the online since 95)... but I will echo every thing Yiotta (Marilyn) said. My resolution at work is 1600 X 1200 and at home is 1280 X 1024...(so low at home because of my pitiful video card and outdated puter...no money.) I had been to your old website, but your new website is a big WOW, like the new look! Some of your links don't work, but your website isn't finished yet either. I must say I find your work original and exceptional in every way. I am awed by your talent and vision!

pixelscapes
01-24-2001, 12:28 AM
*gasp* A new website?? I can't go look right now, but I'm all excited to check it out on my nice highspeed work connection tomorrow. http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/biggrin.gif

-=- Jen "Mmmm, webalicious" de la Cruz

Shriner
01-24-2001, 02:39 AM
Thanks to each of you for the feedback, folks. Yes, it is not even at the halfway finished stage, so there are a LOT of broken and misguided links, and few details, but I hope to work on it more this weekend. I am struggling with certain issues, but I don't want to bring them up and influence the feedback at this very early stage. I do want it to echo my CD-ROM, in minor ways. With as much as I thought I knew about web sites, it still stuns me how different it can look from computer to computer. If any of you know how to do it, it would be great to see screen shots of your full computer screen.

I will continue to work on the site on weekends, so you should continue to see changes. Slow going, though.

thanks for all of the positive comments, too, btw! Those are as helpful as pointing out flaws http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/wink.gif

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Shriner

Shehaub
01-24-2001, 11:40 AM
Here are a couple screenshots of what it looks like on 1024x768.

<IMG SRC="http://www.geocities.com/shehaub/shriner1.jpg" border=0>


<IMG SRC="http://www.geocities.com/shehaub/shriner2.jpg" border=0>

Shriner
01-24-2001, 03:22 PM
Shehaub!!!! Thank you

Reno?????? I live out in Fallon an hour east of you. How did that happen? I was just in Reno this morning getting a crown (my dentist is in Reno, obviously)

small small world

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Shriner

digistyle
01-24-2001, 05:34 PM
Shriner,

I like what you are doing with your site. The globes are cool.

I usually surf the web at 800x600 high color, MS Internet Explorer 5.0. Here's your site at that rez.

digistyle

<IMG SRC="http://www.wetcanvas.com/Critiques/lib/24-Jan-2001/timsscreen.jpg" border=0>

Shehaub
01-25-2001, 09:04 AM
Shriner,

I took one of your art classes. It helped me out tremendously!

I knew as soon as I saw your site, but I was being kind of shy. *blushes* Its a shame not everyone here can see what you have done with their own eyes. Your work is a must see!

Shriner
01-27-2001, 04:02 AM
Sehaub! Yowsa - what a tiny tiny world. It is great to see you here!!

I have updated my site again, for those interested in watching it grow. Still under construction, but your input has helped and the screen shots each of you have posted have been extremely valuable. It has looked so different on your screens then on mine that I realized I had some HTML problems after seeing your images.

Thanks again! Post more!!! You people are fantastic!

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Shriner

yiotta
01-27-2001, 09:46 AM
Shriner,

Oh, much better now! And thanks for giving us a taste of what's to come with the artwork -- I can't wait to see more!

BTW, here's how it looks on my system now (reduced in size by half - I run at 1152 x 864, higher res than you probably need to worry about):

<IMG SRC="http://www.wetcanvas.com/Critiques/lib/27-Jan-2001/shrinersite.jpg" border=0>

I did notice one problem -- I was able to see your really cool installation images at first, but after I clicked on the "Image Details" button, your "not active yet" message won't go away and I can't get back to seeing your images...just in case you weren't aware of that...

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Marilyn

www.inforapenny.com (http://www.inforapenny.com)

"The object isn't to make art, it's to be in that wonderful state which makes art inevitable."
- Robert Henri

[This message has been edited by yiotta (edited January 27, 2001).]

sandge
01-27-2001, 06:19 PM
Hi tim! I really like the new-look site. http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/biggrin.gif
Here are my thoughts:

Design
I really like the design concept. As others have commented, it really suits your work. I love the glass bead effect for image details. How will you get that to work?

I just wonder whether the site isn't a little too designed. There is a lot of stuff going on what with all those rollovers and text and things loading in different frames. It's a lot to look at and your artwork appears to be only one small element rather than the focus of attention.

I would like to suggest:
getting rid of the wooden pillar graphic on the right of the centre image frame because it doesn't line up with the top graphic and I think adds unnecessary clutter
simplifying the font - although you have stuck to one font family, you are using it in different weights, sizes and colours which looks a bit messy
tone down the buttons on the left. They really draw the eye because they are very light tonally and have text and detail on them. Consider reversing the rollover so that their normal state is the darker tone.


Also, can I just ask: what is the function of the enter page (apart from keeping your guests waiting on the doorstep)? (Enter pages are, I'm afraid, a little pet hate of mine. That and music.)

Structure and navigation
Coo, that is a complicated frame structure! One thing that is confusing is that the buttons in the left frame target the right text frame without altering the center image frame. But these two have conflicting navigational elements. So, for example, say I select two-dimensional, the center image doesn't change but the text on the right has changed. The text on the right has no underlining so it's not obvious that there are any links there. But there are buttons in the middle I can click. How do I know that I am in fact scrolling though the wall of icons category rather than the 2-D images?

I really think that you need a default image for each category. The problem is that currently this would mean targetting two frames which I don't think you can do in plain html, can you? There are plenty of free sources of javascript out there but I wonder whether a better idea would be to combine what is currently the center image frame and the right text frame. Another benefit of doing this would be that, because you are loading the text with each image, you could highlight the title that belongs to the image. At the moment it is tricky to keep a count of which title relates to the current image.

I know many designers are very against frames because they do present a number of challenges. I think they have their place and, in fact, use them on my own site. But it does mean that visitors will not be able to bookmark a page which interests them or give the url to their friends. Also, are you planning to register with search engines? If so, it may be possible that someone will come across an isolated frame. Do you have some mechanism in place that will check whether the complete frameset has been loaded? (I'm afraid I can't read some of the source code so I can't tell if you do or not.)

Finally on navigation, the symbol you are using in the center frame to reverse scroll through the images ( |<< ) is more generally used to take you back to the start of something.

Accessibility issues
Your site will be inaccessible to anyone using a browser reader (for example the vision impaired) because there are no alt tags on the images, noframes content nor frame titles and, as I understand it, pop up windows can also cause confusion. If you want to check your site's accessibility issues you may want to run it through: http://www.cast.org/bobby/

Having written all that, it looks like a lot of stuff. So I want to restate that I really do like what you're doing. The design idea is great and fits in really well with your artistic style. And hey, I wouldn't spend all this time on just any ol' website! http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/wink.gif

best wishes
sandra


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http://www.fletcherfineart.com



[This message has been edited by sandrafletcher (edited January 27, 2001).]

TeAnne
01-27-2001, 08:52 PM
Very nice. It did take ages to open though. I hate my ISP

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THE HIT LIST (http://members.iinet.net.au/~fireice/List.html)
I must make a piece of art everyday for my own well being.

pixelscapes
01-29-2001, 10:50 AM
I'd like to second everything Sandrafletcher said...

I love your work of course, and I also like the design style you're taking on the page -- the colors, motifs, etc. So in terms of suggestions, I'm going to focus on navigation and usability.

-- The splash page entrance to your site has very little apparent relationship to the pages that lie beyond. There's that gold and the green color, but it's on a white background and looking very modern in comparison.

-- Speaking of which, is there any particular reason you've got your pages on a .edu site instead of directly under the domain?

-- I do think the nav buttons should say something like "back" and "more", instead of "|<<" and "more". Besides, the use of a VCR symbol somehow feels out of place to me. Maybe if they were both arrows.

-- Also, since all your works have different heights, I'd put those nav buttons at the TOP above the work, not below it. Otherwise as you click through they jump up and down instead of staying in the same place.

-- If I were you I'd also add the title, size, and media underneath the picture. When you're clicking through using the "more" button (as opposed to clicking the titles), as it is there's no way to know which work you're actually looking at.

-- Similar to the previous suggestion: it can't hurt to have a small caption under photos like the ones you have in your "The Creative Process" section.

-- I agree with the earlier comment that the titles of artworks should be underlined if they're links... or at the very least, set up some JavaScript so it lights up or something when you touch the link. The change of your pointer isn't enough visual cue for most folks, I've found.

-- Is there any particular reason your List of Exhibitions has to open in a new window? (and if it does, why not just make it happen automatically?)

-- Ooh, a .pdf file of your current resume... GREAT idea!

-- One last little thing. The buttons on the left are so bright and green-gold... I think you could pull your domain name in the top header forward in the same way, at least a little bit.

Hope this helps! I know this is a lot of quibbles but really, I like your basic approach a lot. It's already LEAGUES better than so many other sites I see out there.

Hmm, this reminds me I want to renovate my sites. Again.

-=- Jen "Hmmm." de la Cruz
http://www.Pixelscapes.com and http://www.BewareOfArt.com

Shriner
01-30-2001, 02:37 AM
Thanks for all the many many (holy cow http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/wink.gif ) suggestions. Many of them I had already been considering, so I guess seeing that others had similar concerns (especially the one about moving the forward/back buttons to the top) just reinforced my reasoning...

The updates are there for those that are watching. Now that it is Monday, I will have to put off any other updates until next weekend. Back to work, I guess. Now if only I could find time to get back to my sculpture. What a freaky busy time

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Shriner

Shriner
01-30-2001, 02:42 AM
Originally posted by pixelscapes:
There's that gold and the green color, but it's on a white background and looking very modern in comparison.


eh??? you are getting a white background? Can you take a screen shot so I can see what is going on? That is a new one on me... yikes


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Shriner

Shriner
01-30-2001, 02:47 AM
Originally posted by pixelscapes:
-- I agree with the earlier comment that the titles of artworks should be underlined if they're links... or at the very least, set up some JavaScript so it lights up or something when you touch the link. The change of your pointer isn't enough visual cue for most folks, I've found.

This is a tough one. I udnerstand why both you and Sandra suggested it, but as we can see looking at everyone's comments, we all have pet peeves, and one of mine are underlined links. They drive me batty (weird, I know) - so I am going with a different color, etc. Looks nicer, and hopefully I get smart enough people to figure it out. We'll see!

I don't have a java script for lighting text up. That might be cool, as long as it doesn't blink (another icky one). Do you know the Java for that?

Thanks again, folks



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Shriner

yiotta
01-30-2001, 10:21 AM
Shriner,

I don't know what programs you have at your disposal, but if you happen to have ImageReady (which comes with newer versions of PhotoShop), it has an action for creating rollover buttons, complete with creating the Javascript code for you! I tend to play with some of the steps in the actions, as their pre-canned one is not completely satisfying, but it's pretty cool that it'll spit out the code for you, if one doesn't want to mess with coding...

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Marilyn

www.inforapenny.com (http://www.inforapenny.com)

"The object isn't to make art, it's to be in that wonderful state which makes art inevitable."
- Robert Henri

sandge
01-30-2001, 03:03 PM
Originally posted by Shriner:

eh??? you are getting a white background? Can you take a screen shot so I can see what is going on? That is a new one on me... yikes


One white splash page coming right up:

<IMG SRC="http://www.wetcanvas.com/Critiques/lib/30-Jan-2001/TimWhiteScreen.jpg" border=0>

Er, isn't that an underlined link? http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/wink.gif
s

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http://www.fletcherfineart.com

[This message has been edited by sandrafletcher (edited January 30, 2001).]

Shriner
01-30-2001, 07:55 PM
wow - I didn't expect this level of criticism... guess I shouldn't defend my decisions http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/wink.gif

yeah - that is someone else's site they put up for me. I asked him to change that background to black. I thought you were talking about my actual site. I will need to remind him

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Shriner

[This message has been edited by Shriner (edited January 30, 2001).]

sandge
01-30-2001, 10:14 PM
Awwwwww, Shriner, I was just teasin' ya! http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/smile.gif

Incidentally, if that splash page is simply to redirect from where your domain name is hosted there are a couple of other things you could consider. One is an automatic refresh like after you make a reply here and you get redirected back to the thread. You could insert code like this in the header
meta http-equiv="refresh" content="5;URL=http://www.timguthrie.com"

By changing the number in the content bit you can vary the time delay before redirection. A good example of this is in action is here http://www.knightswood.com

Another option might be to have a frameset hosted where you domain is. You draw the body of your frames from your .edu site. The advantage of this is that your timguthrie.com domain name stays in the address bar. This is how URL masking works. A bit of the code might look something like this:

frameset rows="100%,*" framespacing=0 frameborder=0 border=0
frame src="http://www.wncc.nevada.edu/~tguthrie/index.html" ... etc etc

best wishes http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/smile.gif
sandra


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http://www.fletcherfineart.com


[This message has been edited by sandrafletcher (edited January 30, 2001).]

[This message has been edited by sandrafletcher (edited January 30, 2001).]

[This message has been edited by sandrafletcher (edited January 30, 2001).]

sandge
01-30-2001, 10:25 PM
LOL! Well, that didn't quite work the way it was supposed to! It's taken a couple of goes to get this thread to stop automatically redirecting to timguthrie.com! http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/eek.gif

Sorry folks! I hope no one was trying to read this page at the time. http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/redface.gif

That'll teach me! http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/biggrin.gif http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/biggrin.gif http://www.wetcanvas.com/ubb/biggrin.gif

s

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http://www.fletcherfineart.com


[This message has been edited by sandrafletcher (edited January 30, 2001).]

Shriner
01-31-2001, 12:52 AM
that'd be a good idea - host the frameset from one place and the rest from my account at the college. I wonder if that would slow things down? I wouldn't think so...

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Shriner