Project: Fjordstudio Blog

 Back to All Projects
  • Completed: 2016-01-19
  • Stack: Custom WordPress theme w. custom plugins.
    HTML, CSS, JavaScript, PHP, MySQL

Goal: A blog to gather musings and thoughts about my art projects.

I thought about this for a long time, although I imagined an online gallery at first (which I might still make, for selected pieces of pictorial artwork), but I have a wide variety of work that lent itself easily to be categorized, and a blog also afforded me the extra freedom of being able to add and publish whatever content I feel like rather than being limited to just one type. So a blog it was.

WordPress, really?

Apparently I am growing a reputation for being good at WordPress. I hope there's some truth behind it. 

The main reason why I chose it was that it was quicker to set up and maintain, and I have limited time. There is no functionality on the site that I couldn't easily have coded from scratch, given the time. Except the time was nonexistant. 

So I made a custom WordPress theme instead, focusing on functionality and design while (happily) leaving the control panel and database setup to the CMS.

About the Design

I didn't have a fixed plan in particular when I set out - or at least not for the whole site, rather then individual components. I knew roughly how I wanted the meny to behave (slide to the top of the screen as the user scrolls, and convert on smaller screens - standard stuff), and exactly how I wanted previous and next links to appear on a post, and how I wanted the dropdowns to look, but that was it. I got to the colours by experimentation, and the rest by natural inclination. That's the beauty of coding for oneself after all.

I really really really wanted a rainbow body border just for the sake of it though, and where would I ever get a chance to make one except on one of my own sites? So it's on there.

The site is progressively enhanced, so the JavaScript behind the menu is 'just' optional juice, and the code is fairly lean since I did it from scratch.

After the August 2017 redesign

Yes, the design ended up looking stale, as happens. Also, I may have let my pride at having wrangled things into place the way I did, get in the way of my better judgement when it came to usability.

So in the beginning of August 2017 the whole site got an overhaul. The color contrast was increased, the whole screen space was utilized instead of centering the content, one of the fonts was dropped - and everything basically came out all the better for it.

Sometimes good design just takes some time to germinate.

© Katrine-Marie Burmeister, June 2019