In her seminal essay On Photography, Susan Sontag writes: “Photographed…
It’s no secret that competition in the wedding photography industry has gotten fierce. One of the best ways to stand out from the crowd and build a competitive edge is to develop a distinct brand that helps clients visualize whether you’re the right fit for them. You should be “wow-ing” potential new clients from the moment they land on your website. Bottom line: your business cycle starts with an eye-catching online portfolio that showcases your shooting style and unique services.
This was our main goal in creating the “Shuffle” template for Beam, PhotoShelter’s new portfolio website platform for boldly designed templates. Its design features an interactive photo wall that displays images from your featured portfolio galleries in a single mosaic. Clients get a taste of your various portfolios – destination weddings, engagement shoots, etc. – right off the bat. Then they can can re-sort the featured images by clicking on a gallery title, and images will reshuffle to showcase those from that particular gallery.
“I think it’s a great way to showcase all my best work without requiring visitors to dive deep within my site,” says Lori Waltenbury, a wedding and portrait photographer based in Canada. “I find it to be really eye-catching, and I love how clients can scroll through my whole portfolio without leaving the first page. I really think my new site will positively affect how much time people will spend visiting it.”
“Shuffle” is great for photographers who want to display a variety of work on their homepage, and let clients decide which particular portfolio they’d like to view. It’s also a prime example of responsive design – try changing your browser size when viewing one of these sites, and see how the images move around to fit the screen size.
We spoke with Lori to learn more about her decision to use this new portfolio website offered by Beam.
Why did you choose the “Shuffle” template for your new Beam website?
I was absolutely blown away with the new designs. I finally decided on the Shuffle template because I love the way it presents my images. It’s nice to finally find a design that does justice to the creative nature of my work!
How do you think your clients will perceive the new design?
I think clients will love the new site, as it’s much more efficient. You can see a variety of my work, not just a certain gallery, by simply clicking on a gallery title from the homepage. I love how it shuffles my images – and that I get to decide which portfolios to highlight.
What new Beam integrations do you find most exciting?
My favorite new feature is the live preview [with the Live Site Editor tool]. I love being able to make changes in real time, and how I no longer have to click “Save” then click on “My Site” to see the changes. I also love how I’m able to highlight my most noteworthy albums at the top of my homepage, and that I can change the fonts and colors without any coding.
How did you find the process of building and customizing your new site?
Editing and customizing my site is a lot simpler and more user-friendly. It’s very intuitive and you can make most essential changes with just a click or two in the live preview mode. No more hunting for buttons!
Beyond the new website templates, what’s your favorite PhotoShelter feature?
A favorite feature of mine within PhotoShelter is definitely “Quick Send” (which lets you send a one-time use download link to clients). Now I can finally say goodbye to problematic sites where clients have to sign up just to download their images. I also love how I can quickly and simply price my images and sell them without any hassle. By far, though, PhotoShelter has saved me a lot of time by just how easily I can manage my images – which ones to show and which ones to hide. PhotoShelter really is the “one stop shop” for my photo business.
Check out more from Lori Waltenbury’s new portfolio website, powered by Beam, at www.loriwaltenbury.com.