Saturday, October 10, 2020

Thumbnails versus slideshows versus videos

See if you can spot the artist who will make their mark in future years - in the online Graduation Show 2020 by recent graduates of the Heatherley School of Art.

Heatherley's Graduates Exhibition 2020

I was left wishing that the show was a slideshow - because 

  • going back and to (due to the lack of a right arrow for the next image of decent size) 
  • means inevitably you only look at some artwork as a thumbnail.

I clicked around in vein trying to find the arrow for the next image - and finally realised there wasn't one.

Hence this post

I'd also have liked to see a text document - providing a summary about each artist and links to their websites and social media accounts.  Being an artist is so much more than producing the artwork....

Presentation of art on a website

Presenting art on a website demands some careful thought about what's likely to generate the best response.

The critical issue is to remember people have limited time and need an efficient and effective method of viewing art they might be interested in.

It's really worthwhile thinking about:

  • the optimum size of image to display your work to best effect - now that buyers are much more used to buying online
  • how best to display a sequence or series of your artworks
    • thumbnails only - enlarging to larger image if clicked (and then you have to go back and start again as per the Heatherley's Show)
    • slideshow of decent sizes images
    • slideshow of decent sizes images - properly annotated with title, media and size (framed and/or unframed as relevant)
    • a video of your artwork - with successive static frames - working in the same way as a slideshow - but with a bit more control for the viewer. (I usually put my cursor on the bottom and speed through - and then only come back and watch slowly if I like what I see)
    • thumbnails AND slideshow - i.e. give the viewer the choice of how they want to view.
  • what's the best thumbnail for your artwork? 
    • Not every artwork is created in a standard thumbnail shape (eg not everything is a small square!)
    • the critical issue is whether or not the thumbnail "reads well" and tempts the viewer to click it and open up the larger image
    • Hence a decision may be required as to how best to format the thumbnail before converting to larger image of the whole work
Thumbnails in the Heatherley's Graduate Show which worked for me are by:

    Jayson Singh is a visual artist based in Battersea and has a fine art degree from Central Saint Martin's. Recently, he has completed a portrait diploma from Heatherley's school of Art and achieved a special commendation from the painter Andrew James RP at the graduating show this year.
    Note that I did not open every thumbnail - just the ones that appealed.

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