Photography by Lucy Hill presents the works of a talented photographer together with additional photography related content. In this photography website the photos are divided into three galleries – HDR, Urban and Nature. All are extremely convenient to browse through and also offer informative captions. The HDR gallery has slightly different settings than the other two. No biggie – really – but it might be best to set all three galleries identically.
Other than the galleries, Lucy has added very cool features like a personal photography blog (set up on Blogspot and integrated to the site site via Wix HTML component). There’s also an HDR tutorial, offering a spot on how-to. These extras give the site an individual flair, creating a more personal relationship between site visitors and owner, one that is often times absent from photography websites.
This familiarity is strengthened by the use of comments in the Contact page, as well as through the poles on the Vote page. The poles (also integrated using HTML) are a cool idea, but it isn’t really user-friendly to ask the visitors which photo is their favorite if they have to skip back to the galleries to make up their minds. Either setting the pole directly on the specific page of the gallery or adding thumbnails to the poles is a better idea.
There’s basically one element that should be reconsidered about the photography website’s design, and that is the pages’ order on the navigation menu. The navigation menu is not only a technical feature, it also determines a site’s agenda. Both Lucy’s Blog and HDR Tutorial appear before the galleries. This indicates a certain prioritization that my not necessarily reflect the site’s true goal.
If Lucy’s main goal is to showcase her photos than they should appear right after the Home button on the menu. If the blog and the tutorial are the focus of the site, they should offer significantly more content than they currently do.
Another two cents that have more to do with taste than with web design – the site opens with a really magnificent shot of a beach. This photo is wonderful as it is and any addition, like the animated birds hovering over it, is unnecessary. Good photos speak for themselves.
To conclude, Lucy’s site makes perfect use of Wix’ special features (comment widget, HTML embedding, galleries, deep linking), combining them with original and fresh content. Seeing this site on air is a treat and an absolute pleasure.