Free is a great price

I’ve paid for web hosting for several years now, but because of some mediocre service from my hosting company, my admittedly spotty blogging activity, and simple lack of time to maintain my own WordPress instance, I’ve made the switch to a free WordPress.com site. There are of course limitations on surrendering control (like not being able to install my own plugins nor embed Flickr slideshows), but the end of a monthly expense and no longer having to troubleshoot technical issues is an obvious gain. To remedy any traffic going to cameronyee.com, I mapped the domain to this location.

As usual, picking a theme is the hardest part. There’s more this “Sketch” theme can do as far as displaying a portfolio of images, but for now I’ll just let the blog do the talking.

What about it?

After reading photographer Neil Van Niekerk’s article about “displaying instead of saying,” I re-evaluated the content of my “About Me” page and ultimately decided to remove the page entirely. My website has always been just a fancy journal about myself and my interests, rather than a means to support and build a business, but Neil’s point is still relevant in terms of keeping things simple. If a person wants to know about me, the blog and various links I’ve included are the best way to do that, not some semi-effusive musing about where I’ve been and where I’m going. However if the goal of the site changes, I’ll likely reinstate the “About Me” page with content more aligned to what Neil advises.

Suddenly…something

Over two years ago I was exploring ways to integrate flickr into my website and came across a PHP script called flickrhelpr. I tried getting it to work but, in my even more limited knowledge of PHP at the time, came up empty.

As I was getting things ready to implement WordPress on my site, I started cleaning things up on the server and stumbled (back) upon the failed flickrhelpr page. Well, something changed at some point so that now the darned thing actually works (albeit with some need of cosmetic tweaking). Ironically, the script developer doesn’t seem to be supporting it now as there’s no longer any documentation on his website.

Anyways, if you’re interested in seeing what it can do

UPDATE: Well, apparently it’s not working now…but maybe it will later?

Theme party

Just like when you buy a car and start noticing others driving the same color, make and model, I’ve started doing this with WordPress-powered websites. Today I noticed it on concert photographer extraordinaire Todd Owyoung’s website, who uses themes developed by Graph Paper Press. There are a number of free, nice looking themes there geared towards showcasing photography work, so I intend to give them a whirl.

Color me im(word)pressed!

I’ve started seeing more and more web designers using the WordPress publishing platform to create dynamic websites, to the point of calling themselves “WordPress Designers.” I can definitely see the attraction, especially for someone who is more a designer than a developer, as it provides a dynamic framework on which someone less technically inclined can build. Even with the most basic installation, WordPress offers quite a bit for the fledgling website, with plenty of room to expand if needed. For this site, I made some tweaks based on this guy’s advice, but many of his suggestions were already integrated into the theme I selected. I’m looking forward to seeing what else can be done!