Break Out the Champagne, I’m Launching a Website!

…and it has a handy web address that’s so easy to remember, you won’t even need to copy and paste:

If you subscribe to this blog or follow it via RSS, don’t forget to change your subscription over to this page on the new website. That’s where I’ll be blogging from now on:)

After some deliberation I decided not to import my blog posts from The Orchard over to the new site. I might even continue to update over here every once in a while, for more personal thoughts. In any case, I’m not sure how this will all be organized in the end but I do know that I want to keep the blog on the new site a bit more professional and polished because it’ll be seen by potential employers and clients.

“Gosh, that’s a bit boring, design-wise, Cole” –well, yes, it does kind of walk the line between minimalist and… empty. My priority right now is getting it up and functioning for employers, so I’m using a handy WordPress portfolio template. But I have visions of organic wood textures and stainless steel dancing in my head… and my goal is to build a custom design later this year that better reflects my personality.

I think that the headshot on my bio page is probably the most professional I’ve looked in the last four years. The glasses help. Writing my bio page was an exercise in ego, and here’s a few lessons that I learned that I think might be helpful for others.

If you commit to having a portfolio website, you have to commit to selling yourself. Unless you’re already an established writer or artist, your website does not serve as a mere informational resource. It needs to draw people in, and inspire them to contact or hire you. For a lot of creative people, marketing yourself feels kind of dirty, and really fake. But if you really want to avoid this, then don’t make a website. And if you do make one, embrace your appeal!

Designers’ websites need good text, and writers’ website need good design. Actually, designers can sometimes get away with having very little text on their portfolio websites, sometimes just a sentence or two on their bio. But writers especially need to acknowledge the power of visual appeal when it comes to portfolio websites. Designers too need to find a clear way to articulate their personality and what they offer.

Show only your best. This is true of any type of portfolio, but I think we need to hear it especially with web portfolios. Don’t post every doodle and piece of art you’ve ever done on your portfolio page – that’s what your blog is for. Your portfolio page should trick people into thinking that you only produce stunning, finished pieces that have been fully cleaned up in photoshop (if they’re visual works) or edited (if they’re articles) and are ready for publication.

2 Responses to “Break Out the Champagne, I’m Launching a Website!”

  1. 1 The Pen Warror February 18, 2011 at 8:51 am

    Good luck with the new website and I hope that you enjoyed the champagne.

    We did not have any for the launch of my fist website but I managed to find some for the launch of the 2nd website

  1. 1 Designers Web | Zillion Bits Trackback on February 16, 2011 at 7:38 pm

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