There are so many distractions from actually taking photographs it is amazing that we ever have time to create. Learning the nuances of new equipment and what has really changed in the constant flow of software updates can be a career in itself. My mission has been to simplify my life to make more time for things that matter; starting with this website.
I have exhibited on the web since 2001. Originally using Microsoft’s web development tools and then Adobe Dreamweaver I was able to produce a good basic exhibition platform. The cost however has been time spent constantly learning and development time; time better spent with a camera in my hand or discovering better post production technique.
For me the obvious answer is to embrace someone else’s code and use an existing content management system (ie a blog.) I chose WordPress because it is widely supported, and is powerful enough to do everything I need in a photography website.
I discovered two things in my transition to WordPress. The first, that Yahoo, my host since the beginning only provided partial support for the WordPress tools on my shopping list. In other words the choice of a host matters. I eventually chose DreamHost. Second, there is an online web development company (Elto.com) that specializes in WordPress at a price that makes it silly to invest your own time to learn how to do it yourself.
Elto breaks the steps down into understandable tweaks for pricing and project management purposes. In my case they customized an existing WordPress theme to give me more control over menuing, migrated my site to a new host including the DNS transfer and finally set up the 301 and 404 page redirects to account for the new page locations; all for under $300. I can report that it was absolutely painless and the results here are proof it works.
So here is a shout out and thanks to my project manager Luke Pickett and everyone at Elto.