Five Design Tips for Every Artist Website

by Ed on March 24, 2014

Budding PhotographerBuilding an effective and up to date artist website is a snap with the write website tools and DIY website builders, but just because you’re using a template for your website, you still have some important design decisions to make.

Color Communicates the Most about Your Website

Leo Widrich of Buffer App evaluated a series of colors and how they play into the messages of major brands. For instance, the color red communicates youthful vibrancy, which, no doubt plays into the choices of major brands like Target and Nintendo who cater to younger customer bases. Widrich argues that colors tend to match a particular message and feeling that brands aim to create.

For artists looking to show their professionalism mixed with a sense of calm, a minimalist black and white website lands them right on target. However, if an artist has more of an ecological or landscape focus, there’s every reason to consider blending greens into their websites.

Artists with a more industrial focus should consider solid black colors on their websites, even using black call to action buttons if their work is more “up scale” in nature. However, wedding photographers should cater more directly to youthful audiences with shades of purple.

Widrich even goes as far as mentioning which colors men and women prefer, noting that women prefer green, purple, and blue. If you have a clear idea of who your customers are, don’t waste your time on color options for your website that won’t connect with them.

Most DIY website builders come with color palette options you can modify and headers you can swap out.

Images Are Essential for Website Design

You most likely have a series of high quality images all ready to go for your artist website. You may even arrange them in a gallery in a specific section. However, don’t stop there with your image design. You need to think about a bunch of other high quality images:

  • Upload a high quality head shot of yourself on the “About” page and consider adding it somewhere on your home page as well.
  • Depending on your design, use a high quality image for your header and a highly readable font that will stand out for all of the right reasons. The header image should fit your style without calling attention to itself. If visitors have to look a second time to read any text on the image, it’s time for a change!
  • Use high quality images on your individual blog posts and website pages to break up the content and to make them more effective when shared on social networks such as Facebook and Pinterest where images dominate.

Create a Consistent Design for Widgets and Buttons

The worst thing you can do to a website with carefully chosen colors and high quality images is to dump in a series of buttons and widgets into the sidebar or footer, messing up the carefully crafted design of your site.

Look into social media icon sets that match your website’s style and only add buttons that add to the design of your site. A website cluttered with garish buttons will draw attention away from the work for sale on it and damage the way visitors perceive you.

Don’t Use Tiny Fonts

The ideal website font is somewhere between 12 and 16 points, but oftentimes websites use smaller fonts that are narrow and difficult to read. Keep your fonts on the larger end so that visitors can quickly read through your copy. It’s your goal to move them along to your artwork anyway. A slightly larger font will actually help direct more attention to your work.

Avoid Font In the First Place!

While you should bend over backwards to make text on your website readable and clear, don’t rely on text to make your website successful. In fact, the more you write, the more likely visitors are to bounce away to another site.

By all means write up an artist statement or “About” page, but focus visitors on your art work and give them a simple and clear call to action button. Let the image of your art work and the button do your work for you. Unless a reader is truly engaged in something you’ve written, large blocks of text will often be skimmed or skipped altogether.

Use calls to action that match your color scheme and let them stand out on your website. After all, a website exists to compel visitors to take action, so if those buttons are lost in the shuffle, so is your website!

Learn More about DIY Website Design

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