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Things are continually changing in the digital age that we’re living in, and now that we’re mid-way through 2015, it’s time to do a round-up of photography website trends for the rest of the year – and beyond.
With an increasing number of people browsing the web on mobile devices such as phones and tablets, designing a website with mobile in mind is going to be even more important in the coming months. Think of a mobile-friendly site as a much simpler version of your full website; the amount of text is limited to be as concise as possible, the site menu has shorter titles, and the focus really falls on your beautiful images. It will also be extremely important to ensure that your site loads quickly on mobile devices, as user experience is even more apparent on mobile.
Your website and images should essentially tell the user a story: what your brand is about, your journey as a photographer, the past work you’ve done, and ultimately the type of work you hope to do in the future. Ideally, your images will also evoke a strong emotional response from the viewer – and interactive storytelling can help achieve this. Techniques such as scrolling images, unique page transition effects, and interesting layouts allows you to create a truly original and engaging experience for your viewers – hopefully triggering an emotional response that will make them remember you long after they’ve left your site.
A couple of years ago, the theme of prominently displayed images across the full screen became very popular in web design. This is incredibly fortunate for photographers, and it’s a trend that’s not going anywhere any time soon. In fact, it is only going to get more sophisticated as techniques emerge to optimize images for better responsiveness and faster load time. Plus, the ability to add information on top of photos without compromising the resolution or user-experience will prove extremely valuable.
Customized Image Portfolios
The way you display your images on your website is highly personal; only you know the story you have to tell and the way you want your audience to hear it. The trend of creating unique ways for users to view your portfolios is gaining a lot of traction. From displaying your images in a grid layout, photo strips, slideshows, and automatic scrolling, you now have more control over the experience your user has.
Focus on Video
Video has become increasingly popular over the past couple of years, and that trend will only continue. Many websites are now utilizing full-screen videos in the background to create a more engaging experience for the user, and because many sites have become more advanced to facilitate faster media streaming, Internet users tend to read less and watch more. Even if you do not typically offer video services, creating a reel of “behind-the-scenes” shots would be a great way to present your brand so that it leaves a lasting impact on your audience and allows you to have interactive media.
The minimalist design has been trendy for a few years now and it basically follows the “less is more” philosophy. Large, full-screen imagery, bold typography, simpler navigation bars, and linear shapes are all going to continue to be design elements in the future. The good news is that this type of design will be a great way to practice honing your marketing message in fewer words and/or photos.
What trends do you hope to see (or not see!) the rest of this year and next?