iQaeds photography and web designHaving a website for photographer these days is probably as important as having a camera itself to photographs. It is the easiest way of showcasing images online, spread the word out with social media platform and gaining exposure. But having a professional looking and well designed web sites can prove to be a pain if one does not know where to start.

Back in my days circa 2000, building websites means authoring the pages with Microsoft FrontPage or then  Macromedia Dreamweaver. Next, upload the pages to web hosting service of choice like Tripod.com or Angelfire. There are a lot of things going on in between the web building software and the hosting provider and to those in the know, what happens if you could not find your index.html file. It’s just a lot of work. Even that is still a basic level web development.

And plus, if you don’t have graphic design background like me, choosing a theme color will take months, typography several more and by the time you have some sort of own logo, a year passed and you realize none of them jive with how you picture your dream site to be. And then start the whole process all over again to no end (I gave up shortly after and were without website for many years).

Fast forward to August 2013, I discovered WordPress.com while scouring the web for new ways of having my photography website designed and hosted. If previously you have used other blogging platforms like Blogspot (now Blogger) or Tumblr, WordPress is a no brainer. WordPress has all the basic tools ready for you to use and all it requires is reading the help and guide page if you are lost.

WordPress web platform helped transform the difficult technical and design aspect to basically a hassle free web design platform and user experience.Which means you build your site while you surf! How cool is that?

All you need is:

  • Decently spec-ed laptop or desktop PC
  • Web browser (take your pick from my recommended Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Apple’s Safari)
  • Constant Internet connection
  • Visual imagination of how you want your site to look like
  • Read and read the Help section
  • and start cracking at designing your brand spanking new web site!

I began with imagining how my site would look like, picked a theme, post several pages and posts and done. Easy eh? I could have counted the number of mouse clicks but then again you get the point.

I didn’t stop there. Instead of having iqaeds.wordpress.com, I went with WordPress’ Domain Upgrade and got my own .com domain. More on this on future post.

In case you have been wondering, yeah after 13 years, I figured out a bit sense of design and typography. But in getting this site done, WordPress and the FontFolio theme helped a lot. Now I can concentrate on posting stuff that interest me for all of you to read. Heck I don’t even know if HTML is still in use or not simply because I don’t see it anywhere while ‘building’ my site.

Why I didn’t pay a web designer you ask? Where’s the fun in that? Simply because,I like to explore these kind of life option myself and learn for my own satisfaction. At least with this kind of platform, I have full control and simply put, it works with my idea of how I want my website to be at several mouse clicks. Pain free, in my book at least.

To summarize, why I like WordPress:

  • All-in-one design and hosting platform
  • Easy to use with plenty of tips and tricks
  • Easy registration and access to the web based platform. Social networking sites aficionados will appreciate this
  • Tons of free and paid Themes. ‘Designing’ your first professional looking site has never been more easier!
  • Easy access to upgrades like domain registration and ads removal

There could be more of the features I missed out but basically those what helped me with my decision to have my first photography blog site here at WordPress. WordPress is a lot of things. Easy to use is definitely one of them.

I am planning  to write a mini series of posts on developing a web site using WordPress.com web platform. So keep checking back for more interesting stuff here!

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