I've known Tanya for seven years, and Olga for six. My best friends and supporters, they've always been there for me, and we're the trio that hangs out in that english pub on the corner, downing fish & chips every available moment we get. By pure coincidence, they're both cute photographers with lots of dogs and cats.
This is the story of how Tanya's website came to be, with Olga's not far behind.
Tanya is one of the best photographers in the Bordeaux region. Her work centers around model photography and weddings. Her old website was a source of information for people who wanted to see her work in higher resolution, check out her prices, as well as get in touch with her. We decided to keep that, all the while refreshing the look and feel of the site.
It was important for us to make a consistent navigation experience. This is where a centralised sidebar played a big part in the design. By keeping everything in one place, we ensured that the necessary options were always on top, always accessible. Finally, I made the sidebar "moldable", with a dynamic contextual section which displays different content whenever the user navigates to another section of the website.
Tanya's sections on the website represent the axes of her practice: weddings, models, love stories, portraits, children. Every section is composed of collections - photo sessions with up to 15 photos in each one. Every section stands out due to Tanya's photography, but this is also where the contextualised menu comes into play, as well as little touches here and there.
What are we used to seeing when opening up a gallery on a photographer's website? A little Flexslider in the middle of the page, floating innocently surrounded by white. Actually, it's as if every single gallery looks the same. As if every single photographer downloaded the same template.
Of course, it's understandable why. We're talking about people getting used to a certain way of looking at their web experience. Make something different - and confusion springs all around. Well, it's not like we have three whole web languages in our disposal to modify the user experience a bit, isn't it?
So let's guide the visitor through the website, with a horizontal gallery on desktop, to take advantage of the high-resolution displays (5K iMac, I'm looking at you), and a vertical scrolldown gallery to take advantage of the horizontal space on mobile. Necessary controls and buttons animate in and out to present choices whenever they're needed.
Why email the photographer to find out their pricing? Or even better: why download that PDF attachment with every single pricing point included? You don't know? Well, neither do we.
With Tanya, we decided to include the pricing for each service on every page. Different packages for every service, accessible right off the contextual menu of the sidebar. That way our dear photographer is not cluttered with pricing requests, and goes straight to the point.