It’s 15 minutes to curtain. The audience is settling into their seats and leafing through their programs. You stand quietly backstage listening to the low murmur of the gathering crowd.
To distract yourself from the challenges awaiting you onstage, you consider the event from the perspective of an audience member.
- How far have they traveled to attend this performance?
- Do they regularly attend fine arts events?
- Are the seats comfortable? How’s the leg room?
- Will there be enough light to read the program once the show starts?
Just then, the lights dim. A couple who couldn’t find close parking dash in and are quickly shown to their seats.
And then it happens.
You appear — dressed in flip-flops, a horribly stained t-shirt, and gym shorts. And to many in the now darkened room, it seems you haven’t bathed or washed your hair in days.
Will your appearance have an effect on your performance? Maybe. Will your audience see through the food stains and clickity-clack of your flip-flops to focus on your artistry? Perhaps.
What will they tell others about the experience? Will those conversations be about your sublime performance, or will they begin with, “I can’t believe she wore that onstage!”
Well, here’s the thing…
your artist website is a stage.
It’s a stage where the show can start at anytime and be anywhere — a small laptop in the kitchen, a large 60” screen running Internet Explorer, or an older-model cell phone.
Your web portfolio is a global stage where your artistry must always be dressed to impress.
SO, WHAT ARE YOU WEARING RIGHT NOW?
- Are visitors immediately directed to the work you want them to see?
- Is it clear how a visitor would contact you or purchase your work?
- How does your artist website function on your cell phone?
- How does your artist website function on your parent’s cell phone?
- Do all videos play properly? How about your audio clips?
- Is it possible at a glance to know when and where you’ll be performing next?
- Is it possible for a visitor to sign up to your mailing list without dozens of pinches and zooms?
GETTING TO THE TRUTH
Sit down at a computer with a close friend. And remember — this is your friend. They are likely to be very kind. Ask them to complete to following tasks — and you must stay silent — helping them is only cheating yourself.
- Ask your friend to send you an email from your site.
- Ask them to find out where you went to school.
- Ask them to sign up for your newsletter.
- Ask them to find out where you’ll be performing next.
- Ask them to browse your portfolio and find your newest work.
If you see them struggling to complete these simple tasks, you’ll know something’s wrong. And if they repeatedly stop and ask you questions, you may well be walking out on stage wearing flip-flops, workout shorts, and a sweat-stained t-shirt.
Don’t worry, we’re here to help. We’ve helped dozens of successful artists launch effective web-based portfolio sites this year alone. Check out some of our recent work and if looks like a fit, give us a shout.
We’ll get you looking your best in two shakes of a lamb’s tail.