Emotion In A Website

As I mentioned in my last post, I’ve been making a LOT of changes to this website. I created this website in 2010, and having it has basically been on-the-job training. While I had designed websites before, they were very simple websites done all in HTML. I had never used WordPress before and it was a whole different animal.

I’ve gone through several changes with this site since its beginning, but in many ways those changes were incomplete. While I still maintained a functional website, there was so much more I wanted to do with it. Plus, so many things were kind of hodgepodged together, but I had neither the time nor inclination to streamline things before.

Somehow, though, time and inclination lined up and I’ve been working steadily on making all these changes for about two months now. That’s probably the longest stretch of uninterrupted time that I’ve spent on the website. Most of these changes are in the back end and visitors won’t see them — that’s kind of the point, anyway! As a visitor, you aren’t supposed to see things working, they’re supposed to just work.

New Artwork Pages

Probably the biggest forward-facing change is the new artwork setup. But even how lovely those galleries are doesn’t tell you the emotional impact of redoing them.

In redoing the galleries, I created pages for each artwork I have. That’s a big task all on its own. Complete with the image, the details (title, year, materials, size), and a little text snippet, these pages are really the focal point of this website. No longer can you only see the artworks in a gallery — now you can also read the stories behind them. And because each page contains links to blog posts and to other artworks, you can see how the pieces all connect to one another.

Writing the snippets for each artwork, as well as reading through my blog posts to find writings to link up with the artworks, reacquainted me with my own work. I reconnected with my influences — all the nature, peeps, all the nature — and the things that drive my creativity.

It’s like this website is a diary, and I read through the past 8+ years of diary entries. I think the effect is the same, even though a diary is private and this website is public. It’s still almost a decade of personal writings, and over 12 years of artwork. Going through all this stuff again makes me feel like I now have a deeper understanding of my art and myself. Or maybe it’s a re-understanding. Either way, this process has been really emotional, and I find myself wondering what this will mean for the future.