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April 18th, 2017

Spring Cleaning | Tuesday’s Tip

Posted by liveBooks

Tuesdays Tip

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Spring is officially here – the time of year where we can start putting away our winter coats and boots and get excited for warm weather, sunshine, and being outside. Spring is also the time of year that allows us to take inventory of the old, polish it up, sweep it out, and dust it off. This same concept of “spring cleaning”  should apply to your business as well – and most importantly your website. When was the last time you really did an overhaul of your site? If it’s been awhile, now is the perfect time and we’ve compiled a list of things to focus on first to get you started!

Content Clean-Up

Make a conscious effort to do a truly comprehensive content clean up. This can range from something as simple as going through your portfolios and galleries and deleting older photos, adding new work, or moving images around, to actually digging in to your analytics and seeing which pages get the least amount of traffic and editing from there. Website design trends are moving toward cleaner, simplistic, and clutter-free – so really evaluate whether each page of your website is absolutely necessary and providing value to your audience.

Update Your Events Page

One of the things we see all too often is event pages that are far outdated – even by a few years. Take the opportunity to make sure your website is updated with your upcoming workshops, speaking engagements, photo expeditions, or any other important events you’re partaking in. Nothing looks more unprofessional than inaccurate information on your website – plus, this will be a great way to promote the events you care about and hopefully garner more attendees.

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Calls to Action

One thing we’ve often noticed that’s missing from photography websites are clear calls to action. While most of the focus should be on your imagery, you also want to make sure you’re telling your audience what you want them to do. Whether that’s booking you for a job, project, ad campaign, or even buying prints, tell them what you’d like them to do and make it easy for them to do it. Having a button on your pages can be an ideal way to lead customers to your end-goal: contacting you!

Update Your Contact Information

If you’ve recently moved your studio or changed your contact phone number, it may be time to look over your contact page. Is your new contact information up-to-date? It can become easy to overlook this simple step, but doing so may cause you to lose a great deal of clients!

Also, try to have your contact information readily available in multiple locations on your website. Customers don’t want to search through countless pages to find your phone number or address. Remember – adding a map to your pages can be an ideal way to attract new customers!

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 SEO Optimization

Search Engine Optimization (SEO) should be something you focus on all year ’round, but if it’s not your strong suit definitely take the opportunity now to pay extra attention. If your goal is to increase traffic to your website (which we think it should be!) then make sure your keywords, tags, descriptions, titles, and content on your pages are working for your business. If you’re not ranking as high with search engines as you’d like, it might be time to overhaul your old SEO tactics and start fresh with these tips!

Experiment With New Website Designs

We know that completely changing your website design is a huge undertaking – but small, subtle changes can be made to create a fresh new look without all the stress of a total re-design. Switch up the images on your homepage. Change the names/titles of your portfolios. Add a new page – such as a blog – to your website. All of these changes will keep your website up to date, as well as give returning clients new things to look at and explore.

Want to explore other design templates? Take a look at all of our responsive templates now to begin!

Website Templates

What “spring cleaning” are you conducting on your website? Email us!

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April is here! With it, comes the chance to begin new projects, start your website’s Spring cleaning and so much more. This is why this month’s playlist is dedicated to new and spring-filled music.

Whether you’re editing your photographs, cleaning up your liveBooks site or photographing beautiful spring flowers, we hope that there is something on our April playlist for you!

Is there a song that you have on repeat right now? Tell us which one at social@livebooks.com!

Posted in Playlists

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Magnum French Bulldogs is website dedicated to promoting Trisha Bowlin’s farm-raised French Bulldogs and miniature pigs. Both her and her family dedicate time to raising the puppies in her home along with her cats, dogs and children. Their main goal is to breed quality and well-socialized puppies. To see more adorable puppy pictures, visit their liveBooks8 website: www.magnumfrenchbulldogs.com.

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We have a farm located on 10 acres in Spirit Lake, Idaho where we raise miniature pigs and French Bulldogs. I love raising animals and spending time with my family. My introduction to loving photography was after my first litter of Miniature Juliana pigs was born. I decided that I was going to take really creative pictures to sell them. There are so many amazing photographers but so many lack creativity and aren’t original. I consider myself creative, but just an okay photographer. My Canon EOS has been through a lot in the last seven years!

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Q: How would you describe the aesthetic of your website in three words?

FB: 3D, Fresh, and Fun.

Q: How often do you typically update your website?

FB: Since we have a litter of available puppies several times a week, I update my page very often.

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Q: How do you choose the photos that you display on your homepage?

FB: I wanted a photo that was 3D. I love the pictures of Magnolia with my daughter. It has the beauty of nature and it is a fun photo. My sister-in-law, Sarah, who is a professional photographer took that photo on her last visit. I wanted to make the homepage draw you into our farm.

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Q: What is your favorite new feature of liveBooks8?

FB: It’s easy to work with very fresh and fun. Lastly, it looks very professional. I did a lot of research and spent hours looking at different templates before choosing liveBooks8.

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Q: What’s one piece of advice you’d offer to someone designing their website?

FB: Have fun, be yourself, and use your imagination.

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Have a website you’d like us to feature? Email us at social@livebooks.com.

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I am a still photographer and director based in St. Louis and New York City. My aesthetic is driven by authentic, textural, emotive moments, whether I am shooting stills and or motion assets. My style and feel of the two assets are consistent, which is paramount for most brands.

Like most people, I loved taking photos growing up and got my first break by being in the right place at the right time when the Berlin Wall came down, which led to a freelance gig at a newspaper, a wire service, etc. The next big break was landing the highly coveted internship at Sports Illustrated. That brought me to NYC and killed the drive of wanting to shoot sports. From there, I assisted for 2 years and the went out on my own and curated a clientele base and honed in on my personal aesthetic, which is always evolving.

I specialize in shooting authenticity-driven imagery for regional to global brands and agencies, working on projects such as: image brand libraries, advertising campaigns, editorial, digital assets for web, print, outdoor, broadcast, etc.

Partial client list includes Mississippi Tourism, Marley Coffee, Microsoft, Morgan Stanley, AMD, Deutsche Bank, Intel, Nike, AMEX, American Airlines, GE, Disney World, Time Warner, Time Magazine, Sports Illustrated, J. Walter Thomas, People Magazine, AG Edwards, CDW, Y & R, Fleishman-Hillard, McCann-Erickson, FutureBrand, etc.

And I have an image on the USPS stamp…to be introduces and issued on March 31st, 2017.

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Q: How would you describe the aesthetic of your website in three words?

LB: Intuitive. Clean. Informative.

Time is precious for any client and we didn’t want people to think about how the site works, it needed to be intuitive. The goal is to be sensitive to people’s time and let them view the images efficiently. Gone are the days, with us at least, for sites with all the bells & whistles, sound, moving targets to click on, etc. Art buyers/creatives have enough going on in their lives, it’s our task to help them and we believe that ease and simplicity is key.

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Q: How often do you typically update your website?

LB: Pretty often, at least once a month if not more. It has to be updated and be fresh. It’s alive, it’s a living breathing organism and we have to keep feeding it!

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Q: How do you choose the photos that you display on your homepage?

LB: I yield to my agent and then we discuss. There are images that tend to rise to the top of the heap.

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Q: What is your favorite new feature of liveBooks8?

LB: The backend workflow is a lot deeper than before. The SEO is key, the rotating home page, it’s faster all around. That’s a few of the faves, hard to pick just one…which is good!

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Q: What’s one piece of advice you’d offer to someone designing their website?

LB: For me, the backend workflow is key. If I’m going to update content as often as I do, it has to be a good user experience, not something that I dread. I’ve had those dreaded websites and blogs in the past, think WordPress, sigh.

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Nicole Sanchez is a visual artist, photographer, and videographer. Her publications, documentaries, and solo exhibits have received countless awards. To see more of her work, visit her liveBooks8 website: www.nicolesanchez.com.

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I am a Dominican-German photographer. I started studying Photography in Germany at a very young age. After I finished my education, I moved to the Dominican Republish where I worked on commercial photography. Eventually, I started making personal projects which resulted in 8 books, 7 solo exhibitions, documentaries, and countless pieces; some of which have been recognized by experts in the field, the media and museums like the Museum of Modern Art in Santo Domingo. My work is part of a personal evolution. It changes as I change. Every day I feel more identified with social issues, human reality, drama, and beauty.

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Q: How would you describe the aesthetic of your website in three words?

NS: Personal, clean, modern.

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Q: How often do you typically update your website?

NS: It varies a lot. I can upload a series of images at once and/or take down a whole portfolio. Whenever I feel I have an image I want to share, I do it.

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Q: How do you choose the photos that you display on your homepage?

NS: I try to vary my homepage often; sometimes it is the newest image I have created, sometimes it is just a certain feeling or mood that I have and want to share.

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Q: What is your favorite new feature of liveBooks8?

NS: My favorite new feature of liveBooks8 is being able to display all the images of each portfolio in one page.

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Q: What’s one piece of advice you’d offer to someone designing their website?

NS: Choose the images that best represent your work; it is better to show the right pieces rather than just publishing a lot of them.

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Have a website you’d like us to feature? Email us at social@livebooks.com.

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The liveBooks team wants to celebrate our clients’ diverse backgrounds. That’s why this month, our Spotify playlist includes our favorite tracks from around the world! From countries like Iceland and Japan, this playlist will have you dancing your way around the globe.

Whether you’re editing images, updating your liveBooks site or planning your next trip, we hope that there is something on our March playlist for you!

Is there a song that you have on repeat right now? Tell us which one at social@livebooks.com!

Posted in Photography / Playlists

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Peter Dunphy shoots landscapes and people for ad agencies, tourism, and corporate clients. Based in Australia, Peter studied illustrative photography at RMIT University and has worked professionally for over 30 years. To see more of his work, visit his liveBooks8 website: www.greatphotographyadventures.com.

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I’ve always had a passion for photography and I decided early on to “follow my bliss”. I studied at RMIT University for three years and initially shot mainly technical still life and product on a large format 5×4″ and 10×8″ view cameras. I had a very strong technical grounding which has guided my work throughout my career. After many years of being mainly studio-based, I decided to change direction and push for landscape and people related work. This has been at the core of my business ever since. I still get excited when I’m producing strong work and have now also extended my range to running location photography workshops. Following your great passion in life can be rewarding on many levels beyond the material. I’m still happiest with a camera in my hand and a beautiful vista to shoot.

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Q: How would describe the aesthetic of your website in three words?

PD: Simple, Clean, Brief.

Q: How often do you typically update your website?

PD: Only when I have a strong shot to add. I think it’s important to emphasize my strongest work. If I feel lukewarm about a shot, I leave it out.

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Q: How do you choose the photos that you display on your homepage?

PD: They must sum up my aesthetic sense and offer something simple and strong to hook the viewer.

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Q: What is your favorite new feature of liveBooks8?

PD: The user-friendly interface. Once you’ve got the hang of it, it’s simple and quick to make changes and add content.

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Q: What’s one piece of advice you’d offer to someone designing their website?

PD: Brevity! Tell a simple, engaging visual story which captures the interest of your audience. If you don’t feel passionate about a shot, don’t put it on your site.

Have a website you’d like us to feature? Email us at social@livebooks.com.

Posted in Photography

Tuesdays Tip

At liveBooks, we know that adding video blocks to your page is an important part of your website. We also know that adding text around those videos can help guide your audience and give them information about the content of your work. Whether its a short description of what the video contains or a simple line stating where the video took place, liveBooks8 offers you the ability to customize every part of your video gallery. Follow the tutorial below to start styling and designing the content around the video now!

  1. To place text content around your video, use the Title and Description fields in the block’s settings in the Content tool. Insert your content into the fields.

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2. From here, you are ready to design/style the look of the video on your page. Select Design this page on the top right-hand corner.

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3. You will see your blocks on the right-hand side. Select the Video block.

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4. You will immediately see layout options to position your text around the video. You can position the content how you would like (top/center/bottom) and also wrap the text around the video. Select the option you prefer.

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5. Select Save and Publish!

Posted in Tuesday's Tip

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Jeff Lewis is an adventure and rock-climbing photographer located on the East Coast of Canada. He travels throughout the Western United States and Canada to capture fascinating images. He also dedicates his time to conducting photo tours and private workshops. To see more of his liveBooks8 website, visit www.jefflewisphotography.ca.

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I first started with photography after a trip to SE Asia to go rock climbing. I wanted to be able to capture my travels and the landscapes around me to show people how amazing this world really is. When I returned from that trip, I began to shoot photos of my home, Jasper National Park, as well as when I would go climbing with my friend. After a few years working in the “real world”, I decided full-time photography was the path for me and I haven’t looked back since.

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Q: How would you describe the aesthetic of your website in three words?

JL: Clean, Focused, Simple.

Q: How often do you typically update your website?

JL: I usually do updates 2-3 times a year, unless I complete a new body of work I’m excited about, then I’ll add it right away.

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Q: How do you choose the photos you display on your homepage?

JL: I want those that visit my site to get a sense of who I am and what I do right away. As I mostly shoot landscaped and climbing, I try to choose the best images from those categories to show on the homepage. Hopefully those few images are enough to entice a longer visit, where someone can take a deeper look at my work.

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Q: What is your favorite new feature of liveBooks8?

JL: One of my favorite features is that I can go to the Content section, add a page and then make it invisible. That way I can work on it until I’m ready to launch, or until I have enough content so that it is not empty when I publish it. Also, the ability to publish with one click is quite nice as well.

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Q: What’s one piece of advice you’d offer to someone designing their website?

JL: Take the time to make sure you have everything the way you want it. With the ability to make pages invisible or not publish changes right away, you can view your changes on your own before you publish to your entire web audience. I think it’s important when viewing a website to know that it’s a finished product and not a “work in progress”.

Have a website you’d like us to feature? Email us at social@livebooks.com.

Tuesdays Tip

If you are currently have a storefront with WeddingWire and have received three (3) or more client reviews, you are eligible to place the WeddingWire Rated logo on your website! Learn how you can begin with our simple tutorial below:

  1. Log in to your WeddingWire account
  2. Click ‘Showcase Reviews‘ under the ‘Reviews‘ tab
  3. If you are eligible, you will see the WeddingWire Rated badge under the ‘WeddingWire Rated‘ heading
  4. Click the ‘Get the Code‘ button
  5. Copy the HTML code
  6. Open your liveBooks dashboard
  7. Click Content
  8. Click on the page you wish to add your ‘WeddingWire Rated’ logo
  9. Click the green ‘+‘ icon to add a content block to the desired page

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10. Highlight and click the ‘HTML‘ content block

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11. Paste the HTML code you copied from your WeddingWire account into the HTML box.
*For more information on how to use this content block, click here.

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12. Save and publish!

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