For the first peer review we are to do, I had the pleasure of checking out my classmate Clayton’s blog, claytongwong.com. Clayton’s blog is focused on photography and the industry, with a focus on freelance work.
To preface, this blog is newer, not a continuation of work done in Pub 101, so there are clear indications of the blog not being fully developed yet, which I will touch upon where applicable. The blog is very clean and white, with a simple, nice theme. I think that’s a really effective choice for a photography site as it keeps the focus on the photos and content themselves. I like the way the main blog page states the mission of the blog, however I think it would be more engaging for viewers to be able to click on content up front. I would recommend minimizing the image on the front page and adding a section for blog content to show up, so the audience can immediately click onto the great content available to them.
Scrolling down, I also think it would be effective to switch the links to social media at the bottom of the website to icons, if possible. Some themes make switching things a little difficult, but it would be cleaner and make the social media links stand out more if they were more visual. I also think it would match the website more, being a very visual space. I would also recommend, as this is a photography-focused blog, to add a widget that showcases Clayton’s instagram. There is a plugin with many good reviews called “Smash Balloon Social Photo Feed” that I think would be a great addition to the blog. It would also be a great way to further showcase social media and the photography of the creator. Once again, though, I recognize that this blog is starting from scratch and hasn’t had the opportunity to be as developed as it could be.
When clicking into the blog content, there is one post titled Things You Haven’t Considered About Photography, which is a fantastic first post considering the mission statement of the blog. The content itself is extremely engaging and has a great voice to it, adding personality to it. The images used throughout the blog piece are really helpful too, breaking up the text and making it fun to read. It made me really look forward to more content from this blog, and excited to read more of Clayton’s expertise on the subject.
The About page is very detailed and fun to read, again putting a lot of personality into the blog that is very engaging. I think the way the information is divided into clear sections is accessible and a great way to outline the information for all audiences, especially new visitors who are curious. The Contact page is currently blank, but as previously stated this blog is brand new so I would expect it to develop as the weeks go on. I hope sooner rather than later content can be put into it, so any other visitors on the website looking to contact the author are able to, instead of coming to a blank page.
Overall, it was a pleasure to go through this site and be able to engage with it. I look forward to seeing how it develops moving forward, and am very much looking forward to reading more content on this blog as the subject fascinates me. This blog has a lot of great professional potential, and I’m excited to see where it goes as the semester goes on!