In depth review: The artist’s site

May 24, 2013

Today I’m reviewing Gabriela Szulman’s site.This site has given me more of a headache than any other site I’ve looked in (in a good way, not the lying-down-in-a-dark room sort of way), and I think it’s because there are so many different solutions.

Gabriela is an artist who makes incredible collages that combine memorabilia (photos, objects, postcards) with painting. She lives in London but is originally from Buenos Aires and her prints often contain wonderful vintage images from South America.

Take a look at the homepage below:

gabriela_1

At first glance, the website looks very  nice and Gabriela’s own images are beautiful. Gabriela has started a blog and writes about travels, exhibitions, and her creative process. There are some fascinating pieces here, not only on the blog but also in Gabriela’s account of recent commissions.

There isn’t a huge amount wrong with Gabriela’s site. The main problem I can see is that it can be confusing and repetitive. There is lots of similar-looking content in different places (with some broken links). And, although there are lots of calls to action at the end of each piece, I was left unsure about Gabriela’s real goals for the site. Is it about selling the work, or providing a nice artistic experience for the reader?

So my general recommendation is to tell a much simpler story. But what story exactly? Here are the steps I would go through in thinking about the future development of this site.

1. Think about art, selling and blogging

There are lots and lots of different things that Gabriela could do.

Her blog entries are inspirational and visually delightful. Some artists who like to write take a blog-first approach, with new art highlighted in passing.  Right now Gabriela’s blog is buried under all her other lovely stuff.

But how does it all fit together?  Have a hard think about your site visitors and art customers, the relationship you want with them, and whether this tends to be repeat or one-off.

Do you want regular customers who are informed about new exhibitions and sales?

Do you want a stream of Memory customers for your bespoke service?

Do you want supporters and family who will read your blog posts and cheer you on?

Or maybe you want to speak to a bigger audience (customers, supporters, would-be artists) about the creative process (and in that case, if you want to sell something what will they actually want to buy?)

I say all this because I think an art site needs fans and buyers, and there is a slight tendency to acquire fans and non-buyers. Especially if the site feeds the need for inspiration but doesn’t create desire for the work itself. Personally, I think an art site needs to maintain a bit of distance between the artist and the reader  (unless you’re really selling teaching).  Gabriela’s recent post on travelling to Bilbao does that beautifully, as does the piece on her home.

2. Where do you want to focus the business?

What does Gabriela want to lead with?

Is it the Memory Print service, making art from customers’ own pieces? (it looks wonderful)

Is it her original art and cards?

Or is to provide general  inspiration for other people, as artists?

(There is a lot of detailed information about the Memory Print process in the blog, which also makes me wonder whether people would like to learn how to make these in a workshop setting, OK, I would).

gabriela_2

(This is such a stunning image.)

Right now, the site features absolutely everything and there’s no particular hierarchy. Everything looks equally important. It feels to me like a more structured organisation would help visitors to pick their way through.

3. Simplify the Homepage layout

There is a lot going on here and as a result it’s quite difficult to work out exactly what Gabriela offers and how to access it.

I would reduce the categories listed in the top navigation to something like Home, About, Collections, Shop, Journal.

And I would consider a blog-first (blog on homepage) style. It needs some thinking about. The alternative is to choose a visual layout which focuses on some of these categories more than others – so rather than 8 little squares, the viewer sees one big image and some smaller ones. You provide signposts to important stuff rather than letting everything be important.

4. Improve the basic SEO

A Google search on Gabriela’s name brings all her sites up but a search on ‘Art made from Memories’…nothing.

The absolute minimum required here is that Gabriela adds a longer, SEO-focused Title tag to the homepage.

You’ll see the title above the browser window. For this site, it currently says ‘Gabriela Szulman’.  To get it right you need to think about what your site vsitiors are searching for and amend  it to be a bit more descriptive… something more along the lines of ‘Gabriela Szulman | Mixed Media Artist, Making Art from Memories in London, England’. That is a bit shonky perhaps, but you get the picture. Think about how people search for what you provide.

5. Write an editorial calendar

The final piece is to create an outline calendar for the blog which is built around external events such as exhibitions, open studios, and major festivals. Then you can fill in all the other things that give the visitor a peek into your world and a cue to buy your work – featuring new work, talking about travels, going behind the scenes and so on.

There are so many different ways Gabriel could go: great talent and a lovely individual voice.

 

 

Email This Page

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }

noahwilk February 5, 2019 at 10:54 am

Hi, my name is Noah Wilkinson!

I`m a professional writer and I`m going to change your lifes onсe and for all
Writing has been my passion since early years and now I cannot imagine my life without it.
Most of my poems were sold throughout Canada, USA, Old England and even Australia. Also I`m working with services that help people to save their nerves.
People ask me “Mr, Noah, I need your professional help” and I always accept the request, `cause I know, that only I can solve all their problems!

Professional Academic Writer – Noah Wilkinson – Sncollegevarkalaalumni Company

Reply

kaystamp March 4, 2019 at 2:48 pm

Welcome to my blog ,
I’m Kay.
If you’ve ever been overscheduled and couldn’t finish a academic paper, then you’ve come to the right place. I work with students in all areas of the writing steps . I can also write the essay from start to finish.
My career as an academic writer started during my school years . After learning that I was very talented in the field of academic writing, I decided to take it up as a career .

Skilled Academic Writer- Kay- Smcentennialbook Corps

Reply

victoriapatton March 14, 2019 at 12:12 pm

I’m an expert writer who loves to bring smiles to people’s face.

Writing is what I do for a living and I am so passionate about this. I have worked with several companies whose mission is to help people solve problems.
I love traveling and have visited several places in the past few years.
I’m happy to have written several books that have contributed positively to the lives of many. My books are available in several parts of the world. And I’m currently working with service providers that help people save energy. Being a part of this team has open more opportunities for me to excel as a writer. I have worked with different people and met many clients as a writer.
I can handle any kind of writing project and provide nothing but the best. People come to me all the time to ask if I can solve their assignment problems and I accept. I find pleasure in helping them to solve their problems as a professional.

Professional Academic Writer – Victoria – A2zcareers Corp

Reply

JordanByday May 28, 2019 at 11:33 pm

Look what we get in the service of you! an remarkableoffer
Are you in?
https://drive.google.com/file/d/1R-lPT8CFmQUn34Lm-eLFN4bepyDoF3Ck/preview

Reply

jenniek July 29, 2019 at 8:42 am

Hello and welcome to my blog . I’m Lynsey Velasquez.
I have always dreamed of being a novelist but never dreamed I’d make a career of it. In college, though, I assisted a fellow student who needed help. She could not stop complimenting me . Word got around and someone asked me for to help them just a week later. This time they would compensate me for my work.
During the summer, I started doing research paper writing for students at the local college. It helped me have fun that summer and even funded some of my college tuition. Today, I still offer my writing skills to students.

Academic Writer – Lynsey Velasquez – Anotherviewpublishing Company

Reply

Leave a Comment

Previous post: