Affordable and Free Artist Portfolio Sites
There are several alternatives for artists trying to create inexpensive portfolio sites for their work. Least expensive are the free blogging sites, though they are the least flexible in layout and design. There are also portfolio website which for a monthly fee provide artists with a way to exhibit their work online. Another alternative is to use WordPress, combined with certain themes. While this last alternative is a little more work to install it offers more fliexibility and control over the long term. Below are a list of alternatives and some examples of each type.
Blogs can be an easy, short term solution for creating an artist’s website. Because there are limitations to the ways one can organize artwork, it will be difficult for an artist’s site to grow over the years using these blogging services. Usually images will be stacked one on top of another in a single column. However it can be a good way to get started building a web presence as an artist and to learn some basic skills in website creation. And with a little work and imagination an artist could build a vibrant, informative and professional-looking website.
Below is a list of several blogging services, suggested templates, instructions and examples.
Examples using Blogger
Simply Changing the Header Creates Identity
A Simple but Useful Artist’s Website(the beautiful work makes the site work).
Emily Anne Aitken
A Student Example
Misc. Instructions for Blogger
Customize Your Blog
Edit The Layout And Colors
Posting Images on Blogger
Posting Images from 3rd Party Services (e.g. Flickr)
Blogger and Flickr
Integrating Flickr and Blogger is a great way to maximize the use of 2 robust web services available for free.
WordPress.com is the hosted alternative to a self-installed instance of the WordPress blogging software. Your domain name will be yourname.wordpress.com rather than your-name.com Like Blogger it is easy to use and set up and is a very good place to start, especially if you think you might install WordPress on your own someday. Many templates are available, many Widgets can be added, and it can be integrated with Flickr. You can also use TypeKit to augment the fonts that can be used in the webpages.
Tumblr, of all the blogging services, has the most aesthetically pleasing temlate designs. It seems especially suited for creating an artist’s portfolio website and blog. Try it!
Tumblr Themes Which Would Easily Adapt to Artist’s Portfolios
Has a Portfolio
Watch The World
http://safe.tumblr.com/theme/preview/2463 – A beautiful minimalist themes
Use text from here:
to create http://cssgallery.tumblr.com/
Featured Portfolio Sites and Services
FameDriver – Effortless websites and portfolios for stylists, makeup artists, hair stylists, designers, and artists. It is in beta, so you have to email them to ask for an invitation. Get in on the ground floor.
CarbonMade For designers, illustrators and artists. A little slick but it works.
“Stacey is a lightweight content management system.
No database setup or installation files, simply drop the application on a server and it runs. Your content is managed by creating folders and editing text files. No login screens, no admin interface.”
Other Portfolio Sites
- Artists Wanted
- Heavy Bubble
- Other People’s Pixels
- Websites for Artists
- Tiny Vices
- Square Portfolio
Extensive List Of Online Resources
Moshe Mikanovsky has posted and extensive list of online resources for artists with over 100 entries, including online artist portfolios.
Open Source Inventory System
CollectiveAccess, which is meant for museums and collectors, could also be used by artists to keep track of their work. It is a free open-source database for keeping track of large collections. It looks like a very good resource. Most other inventory systems are expensive.
WordPress and WPFolio
An alternative to purchasing the services above is to use the WPFolio template for WordPress created by Eyebeam. The advantages to WPFolio is that it is free and you have more control over the design and content. It requires more work to install and will require work and learning if you wish to modify the design of your site. You can see examples of the template at WPFolio. Scroll down the page to “Users” to see a list of WPFolio sites.
I have written tutorials for setting up a WPFolio Site from start to finish that is meant for beginners and non-technical users.
Do You Need Help?
For a small fee I will do the set up for you. Or for a customized site please contact me.