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Inspirational Work

Photographer David Wilder dabbled in portrait, wedding, and commercial photography before he landed on his true calling – photographing the great outdoors. Now, David spends his time capturing the beautiful Alberta landscape and exploring around the world. His website is a true reflection of his love for nature – and reflects a clean and crisp look that we are so excited to feature this week.

Check out his full site – www.davidwilder.ca – and read on for what he had to say about his site’s creation!

DW website

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

DW: Clean, Simple, Sleek. For someone like myself who is always about presenting my work with less distractions, that’s what drew my attention to this design.

DW website 1

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

DW: I was always taught that your handshake says a lot about you. My homepage is my handshake, it is often the first thing people see and where they start to learn about me. I choose images for the homepage that speak to my character, what I value, and who I am as a person. It is with these images the visitor can become captivated and drive them to want to see more.

Dw website 2

Q: How often do you update your website?

DW: The most challenging thing for any creative is to stay current and relevant. Before I found liveBooks, it was so hard to keep updating my site. But with liveBooks the system is now so easy to make changes on the fly. I tend to make updates to my website once a month. I feel it gives a balance between my visitors getting a chance to see what I have recently been working on but not rush their favorite images out the door too soon.

DW website 3

Q: What is your favorite feature that liveBooks offers?

DW: Hands down it is the Admin Portal. Time is so important to everyone. The less time I have to dedicate to making changes means the more time I can focus on my craft. My heart always wants to be behind the camera taking the next photograph and the way the Admin Portal makes updating my site so efficient it allows me to be out there finding my next shot.

DW website 4

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

DW: My advice would be design something that speaks to you, as this will achieve a number of things. A website speaks on your behalf, it represents you. You want visitors to get to know you by viewing it and feel like they have already met you. You also want to be happy with its aesthetics; it needs to be captivating and engaging to your audience, otherwise you will constantly be trying to change it and using up precious time that you could be using to create more of your art.

DW website selfie

Follow more of David’s work and adventures on Instagram – @dw_photo_ca

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

 

 

Emmy-award winning destination wedding photographers Chris+Lynn travel all over the world taking gorgeous, colorful, and highly expressive images. Their website is so unique and romantic that we absolutely had to feature it this week.

Check out their full site – www.chrispluslynn.com because we absolutely love it – and we’re sure you will too!

C+L test

 

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

C+L: Emotive, bold, and handcrafted.

test test

 

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

C+L: Our clients are couples headed on the literal and emotional journey of having a destination wedding, so our photography is about capturing that – the true adventure of love! We choose images that reflect the authenticity of travel, adventure, and love.

C+L press

 

Q: How often do you update your website?

C+L: We try to update galleries with fresh images every two months.

C+L truth

 

Q: What is your favorite feature that liveBooks offers?

C+L: The ease of updating in the editSuite is great and we love the incredible customer service.

C+L published

 

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

C+L: For us, designing a website is a constant work in progress! Understanding this and having a platform where you can continually and easily update and tweak the site is important. Another tip we found valuable was to aim for maximum impact when choosing your images – and design your site to heighten that impact.

Contact

 

Keep up with their destination weddings and adventures on Instagram @chrispluslynn & Twitter @chrispluslynn.

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

 

We feel extremely lucky here at liveBooks to have so many talented photographers and creative professionals from all over the world using our platform. Lukasz Warzecha, a Polish born British photographer, does incredible photo and video work on mountaineering in some amazing locations. This week we are featuring his website (we love his integration of both photo and video!) Check out what he had to say about it below!

LW website 3

 

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

LW: Uncluttered, Modern, Fresh

LW website 1

 

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

LW: This has been a long process. I’ve been shooting professionally for over five years now and over this period of time I had opportunities to shoot on four continents and for a variety of clients. I’ve had the pleasure of working with Peter Dennen, Former Director of Photography at Aurora Photos and now running his own consultancy business (Pedro+Jackie). Peter has poured over 1000+ images and organized my work into galleries, the whole process took us a few months also because I’m normally super busy traveling and shooting.

LW website 4

 

Q: How often do you update your website?

LW: I try to update my page every 12-18 months, in between I’m usually adding some fresh images every now and again.

LW website 6

 

Q: What is your favorite feature that liveBooks offers?

LW: I’ve been a liveBooks customer for a long time now (four years, I think?!) and I just like the whole system. The look and feel of the galleries and the integrated video capability and the back end, plus email and FTP support.

LW website

 

See Lukasz’s full site here: www.lwimages.co.uk

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

The importance of having a mobile-friendly website for a photographer or creative should not come as a surprise. The percentage of mobile traffic has surpassed 50% on many sites, and Google (as they are known to do) is once again switching up their algorithm to cater to this growing number.

On Tuesday, April 21st, Google will start using mobile-friendliness as a ranking signal. This means that Google will now start marking your site as mobile-friendly (seen in screenshots below) to determine if your site should rank higher in search results. To put it simply, if your website or blog is not mobile-friendly, it will be penalized by Google when a user is doing a search on a mobile device. Google says that it is doing this so that “users will find it easier to get relevant, high quality search results that are optimized for their devices.”

google_update

 

What does this mean for you and your liveBooks site?

To ensure that your site is not negatively affected by this new change when someone searches using a mobile device, it is important that you make sure Mobile 2.0 is enabled in your editSuite. Mobile 2.0 was built with this new algorithm in mind to optimize your mobile presence. It will transform your liveBooks site into a clean, easy-to-navigate, photo-centric experience for all users on all types of mobile devices.

 

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You will also want to check out Google’s Mobile-Friendly Test to confirm the compatibility of your site and blog.

Additional Resources:

editSuite Help – Enabling Mobile Websites

Mobile Websites 2.0 FAQ

Google’s Mobile Guidelines

Google Webmaster Help Forum

5 Benefits of Mobile Websites

Need help enabling Mobile 2.0 in your editSuite? Contact our support team at support@livebooks.com

Todd Beltz, a commercial and editorial photographer who specializes in culinary, space, and travel images, has a website that is so colorful and eye-catching it seems to pop off the page – yet still manages to be extremely clean and easy to navigate.

Here’s what Todd had to say about his site – and don’t forget to head on over to www.toddbeltz.com to see more!

todd beltz website

 

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

TB: Minimalist, easy, clean

todd beltz website 1

 

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

TB: Choosing photos to put up on my website is a tough job as a photographer. I may find a picture I took to have special meaning and want to display it but it won’t particularly hold any interest to the viewer. So I generally choose photos that will hopefully draw the viewer in to want to see more.

todd beltz website 3

 

Q: How often do you  update your website?

TB: This varies depending on my work schedule, but I do try to update it with new material at least twice a month.

todd beltz website 2

 

Q: What is your favorite feature that liveBooks offers?

TB: I have a few favorites but if I had to pick one it would have to be the SEO that liveBooks offers.

todd beltz website 4

 

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

Artist Claire Rosen, who specializes in fine art, as well as fashion and advertising photography, and was named in Forbes 30 Brightest Under 30 for Art and Design in 2012 and 2013, has one of the most unique yet easy-to-navigate sites we’ve ever seen.

Here’s what she had to say about it – and don’t forget to check out her photography, it’s absolutely stunning!

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

CR: Branded, Functional, Cohesive

claire rosen website

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

CR: The images selected for display on the homepage were chosen to reflect a cohesive vision in my work that didn’t draw lines between fine art or commissioned projects.

claire rosen website 1

 

 

Q: How often do you update your website?

CR: I update my website as I have new projects or information to share.

claire rosen website 4

Q: What is your favorite feature that liveBooks offers?

CR: That it is so easy to use and update that I don’t ever have to worry about it!

claire rosen website 2

 

Check out Claire’s full site: www.claire-rosen.com and follow her adventures on Instagram: @clairerosenphoto.

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

 

 

April 3rd, 2015

Photographer Spotlight: Jim LaSala

Posted by Caity

Jim LaSala is a multi-award winning fine art photographer and Moab Master who was born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. He lived in Staten Island for several years and currently resides in Flemington, New Jersey. He opened “Strike a Pose Photography Studio” in 1990 specializing in Fine Art Photography, Portraiture, and Electronic Imaging. Jim is presently a managing partner for “Xact Studios” in Hillsborough, New Jersey. As well as still life and fine art images, Jim has been passionately involved in documenting the people and their lives in Haiti. We had the pleasure of chatting with Jim to hear more about his work, inspirations, and vast experiences across the globe.

Q: What’s your inspiration?

JL: My parents are my inspiration, and it started a long time ago. We were less fortunate than many and growing up with deaf parents forced me to mature somewhat faster than some other children my age. They truly moticated me to see past prejudices and being held back from the things that you truly want in life.

Jim LaSala 1

“Eyes on Haiti” – Jim LaSala

Q: What role does photography play in your life?

JL: Communication. My photography is an extension of my feelings and thoughts and it has been very special to me.

Jim LaSala

“Blind Faith” – Jim LaSala

Q: Who are some sources of artistic influence for you?

JL: The first person that comes to mind is the incredible works of George Hurrell, “photographer to the stars.” His control of hot lights and dynamic portraiture has helped me understand the importance of capturing full tones and controlling contrast. Also Ansel Adams, who was a master of pre-visualization. I’ve often been asked how I end up with some of the images that I have produced and I believe it has a lot to do with understanding the story you are trying to share. What made you stop to photograph a certain situation? Was it color, texture, or maybe lack of color? Try to bring out just what it was that caught your interest. Don’t just settle for mediocre but keep your thoughts and ideas flowing. And lastly, Sally Mann. I love her storytelling abilities as well as her black and white treatment.

Jim LaSala 2

“Profound Silence” – Jim LaSala

Q: Let’s talk about your work “Hope and Despair.” Can you tell us a little more about this project?

JimlaSala

JL: I have been fortunate enough to make six journeys to Haiti along with a non-profit organization that has been documenting the people who are in such need. This image was captured on my last trip (February 2011) while we were staying in Port Au Prince. We stayed in a makeshift commune that houses volunteers from all over the world. Behind this building are many tents that are set up for hundreds of people that lost their homes after the devastating earthquake in 2010 that took over 300,000 lives. It is here that we find children laughing, crying, playing, and surviving. Warm and friendly people is what I experienced. The many faces and eyes that tell a story we could never imagine. I’m blessed to be a photographer so I can tell the story through my images, and many times we forget how important our job is. When we are documenting and relaying our feelings about people, it’s not just about pushing the shutter. It’s about caring and respecting life. The story behind “Hope and Despair” is as follows: while in tent city, I spent time walking among the people, trying to get to know them, and make them feel comfortable. I came upon these two young girls who had been in tent city for about a year. One seemed quite eager to have her photo taken, while the other one was very shy. With some coaxing I was finally able to grab three or four images before I continued on. There are many times when I don’t even realize what I have captured. We become voyeurs while hiding behind our cameras. At times, we even lose our sensitivity while trying to capture the emotions around us. Sometimes, it’s not until I actually get back home and start editing that I become very emotional and affected by what I have captured. It is at this time when reality hits and we can no longer hide behind a piece of equipment and separate ourselves from the world. I’m hoping to continue my story. I’m hoping that my images can in some way help a country so devastated and so in need, yet so proud and grateful, even for the little they possess. I’m so grateful that I can share my story with everyone through my eyes.

Jim LaSala 3

“Sweet Innocence” – Jim LaSala

Jim’s exhibit, “Cuba Revealed,” is currently showing at the Collection Privee Gallery in Wynwood, Miami.

Check out his website to learn more about his fantastic work!

For the second installment of our featured website of the week we have Martin Sundberg, a photographer, director, and DP based in the San Francisco Bay area. He specializes in making photographs and films of people living an active life and pursuing their passions by land and by sea.

Check out what he had to say about his liveBooks site!

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

MS: Clean, functional, and eye-catching

martin sundberg website 3

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

MS: Initially I worked with a consultant to edit galleries and categories. Since then I have added and subtracted as I saw fit (which does not always make a gallery stronger) but it is so easy to play with and always exciting to get new work up.

martin sundberg website

Q: How often do you update your website?

MS: After ever shoot I like to drop my favorites into a “new work” category, and if they easily fit in the flow of one of my other galleries I’ll drop them in there as well. As bodies of work present themselves I will just try them out in new galleries.

martin sundberg website 4

Q: What is your favorite feature that liveBooks offers?

MS: The behind-the-scenes. Making new galleries and adding new images is so intuitive.

Martin Sundberg website 1

Check out more of Martin’s site here: www.martinsundberg.com.

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

 

 

March 30th, 2015

5 Traits of a Great Website Homepage

Posted by Caity

You know the saying “you never get a second chance to make a first impression?” Well that absolutely applies to your website. Which is why your homepage – the first page people land on – is one of the most important pages on your entire website. We’ve identified five traits that make for a fantastic website homepage. How many of them does your site have?

1. Clearly Answers Who You Are and What You Do

As photographers and creative professionals, visuals are going to play a huge role in your website homepage. Ensuring that you choose a photo or photos that clearly illustrate who you are and what your brand is about is imperative so that the user continues to browse your site. Do you do multiple types of photography? Or specialize in one area? Make sure the visuals you choose reflect exactly what you do and what you can offer to a potential client. You never want someone to land on your site and have to ask “what do they do?”

2. Dynamic and Always Changing

Users are smart. They can tell when a site hasn’t been updated in a while or if the content is old. It’s important that your homepage reflects that you are constantly completing fantastic new work and projects and posting it accordingly. In this day and age, styles, techniques, even gear changes so rapidly that it is extremely important to showcase that you are “with the times” in the types of photos you display.

3. Stellar Visuals

As photographers this is where you have a huge leg-up over pretty much every other industry. You take stunning visuals for a living! But how do you choose just one (or a few) for a homepage? One way is to let your ideal consumer or customer decide. Your idea of your best picture may be totally different from your target audience, so feeling out public opinion can sometimes make the decision a lot easier. Maybe run a poll on Facebook or Instagram between two photos and see which one gets the most likes. Another idea is to ask some close friends/family what three words come to mind when they land on your homepage – if those three words are in-line with your style and what you envision your brand to be, you know you’ve got the right picture. Plus, as mentioned in number two, your photo should always be changing, so you will have plenty of opportunity to show off your different shots.

4. Optimal for All Devices

These days, mobile phones and tablets are quickly becoming the preferred way to browse the web. To make sure that people coming to your site have the best experience possible, it is very important that your website is optimized for mobile devices. Not only should your site display beautifully on mobile, but it should also be easy to navigate so your consumer is able to get all of the important information they need. Make sure to enable Mobile 2.0 in your editSuite!

5. Clear Navigation

When a user lands on your homepage, what is the logical next thing you want them to do? Most likely check out your portfolios, then maybe read your bio or get more info on you, and last but certainly not least, contact you. Make sure that your navigation portrays these steps in a way that a user would look for them. Make it clear what each page of your site displays so that they don’t have to waste any time looking for what they want or need.

What are some other traits that you think are the most important to keep in mind when designing your website? We’d love to hear your thoughts!

Here at liveBooks, we love providing creative professionals with the tools they need to express themselves, their brand, and their work. We are starting up a new weekly series where we will feature a different liveBooks website each week with details from the site’s owner about what went into its creation. We look forward to seeing the amazing things each of our clients can do with their liveBooks site!

This week we are featuring Mike Adrian, a destination wedding photographer who travels throughout Hawaii, California, Mexico, and Canada.

Mike Adrian Headshot

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

MA: Clean, Elegant, Romantic.

MikeAdrianWebsite

 

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

MA: Photos need to represent a powerful moment of connection between the couple. I want potential clients to be able to place themselves in the photo – let them feel that this can be their moment too.

MikeAdrianWebsite1

 

Q: How often do you update your website?

MA: Photos are generally updated every three months. Galleries are added or removed based on location, venue, or event style.

MikeAdrianWebsite2

 

Q: What is your favorite feature that liveBooks offers?

MA: The customer support is the best. I can have ideas for the website and the technical team is there to make the ideas become a reality. The ability to update the look and feel of my site based on my business needs is amazing.

Check out more of Mike’s site here: www.mikeadrianweddings.com

 

Interested in having your website featured? Email us at social@livebooks.com.

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