To have the best website, you need the best tools. And some knowledge of what the best photographer website really means.
In a photographer portfolio website, you cannot allow yourself to lose the design competition. You simply need to be the best. To that point that people who browse the website should have a memorable experience. By landing on your website, they get acquainted to your work, your personality, your brand.
One of the conditions for a good design is to pay attention to every inch of every page in the website. You should take care of the minutest details and make sure all elements in the website pages are at the right place.
That being said, we’ll draw up a list of what needs special attention, in designing the best photographer portfolio website.
Good to know!
The photographer portfolio doesn’t “sell” itself. The website, by its own presentation, doesn’t have high chances to convert readers into clients.
To add up to the site design, you should consider having business cards, that showcase the portfolio website. And you should complement all these with networking, networking, networking…
However, it’s important to be easy to contact. Include social media links to your profile, and you’ll increase your chances to be contacted after people have visited your website.
Some examples that might inspire you:
How to get started
1.As in the case of every new website, first imagine your layout for the photographer portfolio. What pages it should contain and how the elements will be arranged into sections are the first thing you have to decide when starting a photographer website.
For further information about different types of website layouts, you can check this resource.
The layout is essential, as it can emphasize the value of photos and quality of your work. Which brings us to the next point…
2. Only include the best photos and edit out the rest. Of course your work includes many photos. And for sure, you don’t want to pack them all into the website. They’ll be redundant, and not all pieces will be equal in quality.
Therefore, select some of the best photos that represent your work as a photographer, and leave the rest aside. You might consider up to 8 photos that’ll be part of your portfolio. Otherwise, if you want to go original, you can include multiple photos in a sort of patchwork that deploys on the entire page.
3. Keep it simple. A website simplicity can go a long way telling readers the story of a career (or hobby). Elements should relate to each other, and sections should follow one another in a natural way.
If the design is simple, readers will find it easier to navigate throughout the page information, and they’ll better remember the presentation.
What to pay special attention to
As we said, one of the key elements in building a photographer website is to choose the appropriate layout. This one can make a difference, and ensure the website will be a success.
Then, you should choose the exact colors that define your personality as a photographer. The color scheme should perfectly reflect your style, vision and approach to photography. And here comes the tricky part: how to choose the main color and additional colors (accent color, CTA buttons color, etc.)
The ColibriWP tool will help you set the adequate combination of colors, through the color schemes option.
Some more examples of photography websites that might inspire you:
How to create a photographer portfolio website, using ColibriWP
Not only the color scheme, but also the entire layout and all components can be set with ColibriWP. To start with a source of inspiration, you might want to choose the ColibriWP demo site:
A website built from this demo will breathe professionalism, in each and every aspect of the design. But it also has a color scheme and design that make it special, through all pages. A combination of orange and black, or the double borders for text boxes are only a few examples of what contributes to making it stand out.
The website includes diversified presentations of the photographer’s work, all united under the same brand and style.
Choose the right color combination
As we mentioned, the orange and black combination creates an amazing effect, that’s both classy and innovative. Orange comes from the main photo background, while black is used as accent color, emphasizing the photo colors.
For a different style and imprint of your personality as a photographer, change the color scheme accordingly:
You can choose a different color scheme, from the various color schemes suggested to you by ColibriWP. Or else, you can click on a color to change it, in the current scheme used for the demo site. Also, you can click on “Add colors” to integrate additional colors into the current scheme.
Select a limited number of photos
Do not use all the photos to create a portfolio. Select the best of them, and showcase them so people cannot but contact you for their project.
A limited number of photos stirs up their curiosity to find out more, and how this might apply to their own project. You can make a draft of the areas you take photos for (nature, commercial photos, wedding, portraits, lifestyle, food, architecture, sports). Then, you can select one single photo for each of these areas you take photos for. The best one, and that exact photo which is representative of your work and skills.
Like in the case of our demo, that features a photo of the photographer. In the page dedicated to Work examples, photos are separated into “Portraits”, “Nature”, “Products”.
Choose typography that invites to reading more
It’s widely known that typography influences how people read your pages. Good typography invites to reading further, and paying full attention to the message text.
You have the option to select the appropriate typography from the Style tab of the corresponding text:
Also, text structure simplifies the reading process. With a good text structure, you signal what the text is about (title), how the text is divided into different sections (subtitle), etc. You can use the H1, H2, H3… H6 title types, to organize your text content accordingly.
Moreover, you can add customizations for the body text, lead text, links and blockquotes, regarding typography:
- Font family
- Dimensions of the font
You can also use some advanced functions regarding typography, such as the height of the line of text or the space between letters in a text.
A blog is attached to the photographer portfolio website
One other way to communicate with your website visitors is to attach a blog to your website. Therefore, you can expand on your photography techniques, your values, your story as a photographer. A blog adds life to your portfolio, so you shouldn’t miss the opportunity to attach a blog to your website.
The ColibriWP demo comes packed with options for a blog, by default.
In the Customizer, you can switch to the blog view, and you can add specific blog components to it.
The menu has to be simple, to facilitate the simplest navigation
As you know, the menu has the purpose of facilitating navigation within the website. Hence, the need for simplicity in this area, so users find it easy to get oriented within the website pages and content.
First, the structure of the menu involves a single level, so it shows the website architecture is flat. Content is easy to discover.
Second, the menu items are ordered so important pages be accessed from strategical places: SERVICES comes next to the homepage, enticing readers to browse through the photographer services and find out more about bow they can collaborate with them.
Third, the menu items are marked in black, on a white background, whereas the active item and items on hover take a different aspect (in this case, the items are underlined and in grey color). This creates some sort of interactivity, and gives users a sense of control over their own navigation within the website.
Each section can be customized differently
To keep the attention focused on browsing the website content, ColibriWP gives the possibility to customise each page section differently.
One important option is you can change the background for each section, separately. And this is valid for every page in your website. The background can be any color you want, only you need to observe a design coherence and keep an agreeable color scheme throughout the website pages/sections. Also, the background can be set to image, gradient or video, as you like.
See the example of the ABOUT page:
Thus, by specific customizations, each section adds extra information to the presentation in the photographer portfolio website.
As you can see, 3 suggestions were made for you in the demo: classic black text onto white background, image background, and white text contrasting with the black background.
Of course, you can play with different section presentations, and innovate so the section presentation fits well into the overall design. Also, that section should fulfil its role to add up something different to the content that’s already been presented in the above sections.
An image gallery cannot miss from the presentation
An image gallery is more than welcome in a photographer portfolio website. It includes a collection of photos that showcase your skills and promote your work in the most effective way.
Such a gallery might comprise different types of photos, that demonstrate your abilities in the area. The gallery can be customized so that, when you click on a photo, it opens in a lightbox (with arrows to go to the next/previous photo).
An image gallery is one of the most important components of a photographer portfolio website. It equals a collection of the best photos that users can click on and study attentively, and like. It’s another chance to promote your photographer skills, and maybe the major chance for it. The gallery can include as many photos as you like, and it’s recommended you pay attention both to the images themselves and to the gallery aspect as a whole. It has to show diversity, and talent, and beauty captured in an instant.
You need to focus on the most important skills as a photographer
As a professional photographer, you can focus on some areas you are interested in. Similarly, you should reflect this in the website. So focus on the most important skills as a photographer: you are an expert photographer for portraits, commercial photos, nature, wedding, lifestyle, food, architecture, etc. Make your web page show this. Make it “speak” about your talent, your area of expertise and your propensity to capture special moments.
That’s why the WORK page contains distinct image galleries for Portraits, Nature, Products. These are the 3 areas of expertise you can customize with your own content (text and images alike).
As in every website, you need to emphasize your uniqueness, what makes you special as a photographer, and what gives extra value to your services.
Why should people choose you, why should they collaborate with you? To make them find the right answer, you need to suggestively place that answer in your website pages. And some of the most effective components for this are the image galleries focusing on specific photo types.
Inner pages in a photographer portfolio website
The demo has 5 inner pages you can customize for yourself.
These internal pages refer to:
Make the most out of each page, and showcase something unique in each of them. Through content or design. Through real care for users, and some true message they’ve been looking for, and which makes them get into business with a you, the photographer.
Also, you can change the topic of some or all of the pages, they serve as simple guidance in your design. However, they’re the most important areas you should include in a photographer portfolio website, so think twice before changing a page topic with another.
A new set of photographer websites to inspire you:
Tips and tricks for a photographer portfolio website
To speed up the design process, and make it effective, it’s good to know some tips and tricks that work well for any photographer portfolio website:
- The items in the menu have a certain order. Find that specific placement which is best oriented towards conversion. The information you want to showcase should come second in the menu, immediately after the homepage item (in this case, the SERVICES item). The CONTACT item cannot miss from the menu. People are used to find such a button to click on and go to the contact details. And contact details strengthen the authenticity of the website content. Also, avoid placing too many items in the menu, only keep the necessary elements people use for simple and clear navigation throughout the website.
- The Call-to-Action button might be placed in the menu, and it encourages users to take action. Usually, the CTA button is the last item in the menu, as people first focus their attention in the right upper corner of the page. A CTA button in the menu might considerably increase chances of conversion.
- Your website should include an About page, as well. A relevant photo and a short description of who you are will help readers know you and your work. They get familiarized with you and your work, and they might be more inclined to collaborate with you, based on the information they see on the website.
- In any portfolio website, it’s recommended you include some counters. They elegantly present your skills, as a graphical representation that shows more than mere figures.
- The contact page includes all necessary information: besides a contact form visitors can use for different questions related to your work, you have to include phone number, email, physical address, a map and social icons.
- You should consider including some testimonials related to your work as a photographer. They’ll bring confidence in your expert skills, and recommend you as the right person to collaborate with. The demo site has a Testimonials section you can customize to your liking:
- Pay special attention to links. They’re indicators of the users’ activity on site, and serves to orient them as much as the menu items. In this demo, links on hover have a different color, which contributes to adding interactivity to visits on site.
These are only a part of the tricks that can turn your website into an outstanding website. Hope the information above helps you build a photographer portfolio website the right way, the excellent way. Please share with us your experience, in the comments below. We’ll be glad to expand the list of photographer portfolio websites that deserve a special place in an article dedicated to “Best Websites for Photographers”.