I am a photographer and have had my own website for a while www.blackshadow.com.au which is hosted through a template/hosting solution for photographers www.photium.com but it is now time for me to update to a more custom site that offers benefits my current site lacks.
I can’t find an “off the shelf” solution that offers what I need so it looks like I will have to either build it myself or find a very cheap web designer as my finances are very tight at the moment. The only web design skills I have at the moment are very basic HTML but I am tech savvy and have a bit of time to teach myself some more skills in this area.
I know there are some open source solutions out there that offer parts of what I need but it’s the tying everything together that I find a bit daunting. My current leanings are for either a WordPress or Joomla installation to handle the basic website functionality and user management. The part that gets difficult is integrating the gallery and ecommerce side of things in a seamless installation.
I’d really like advice from some experienced web designers in how to best go about putting together a site that meets my needs (as detailed below).
Professional clean look
Easy to maintain and update the site
Optimised for recognition from search engines
I like the basic look and feel of my current site but I would like a new site that incorporates the following:
• The home page to have a photoblog flavour where I can post a photo of each new event and make a few comments about the event then when site visitors click on the image they can go to a gallery containing all photos from the event.
• The ability to send out email newsletters to registered users advising them of website updates or other news.
• A sidebar (or top bar) that allows users to easily navigate to the sections such as those listed below from all pages of the site.
o About Me
o Ordering and pricing
• An event calendar on the front page
Image Gallery Requirements
• Logo up the top
• Nested galleries (eg Music may contain sub galleries such as Concerts, Festivals, Promo shots and then each of these contain a number of galleries and each of those galleries could contain a number of galleries)
• Easy to sort the display order of galleries and photos.
• Style the same as the rest of the website
• Links to main home page and all other site pages
• Full size image maximum side to be 640 pixels
• Thumbnails maximum side to be 150 pixels
• Do not display filenames of thumbnails
• Upload multiple file to the gallery either from browser, FTP or the Windows Web Publishing Wizard (preferably all three) – I am open to using gallery generation software such as iview MediaPro or JAlbum
• Ability to input key words for each gallery (or image) to allow users to search the site
• Password protection for client only galleries
• Image security (watermark and/or right click protection)
To allow customers to order photo prints
• print pricing for each item (a number of different prices depending on print size)
• each order to generate email to me identifying the prints ordered, contact details, postal address, postage and handling (different for Australia and International orders)
• calculate and collect payment by Direct Bank Deposit, PayPal or Google Checkout