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Horror
02-05-2008, 05:46 AM
Hey everyone.

I've been working on a new website for my game related projects, and I have just finished uploading it. Any feedback would be great! I'm never quite sure what to think of my own work, so let me know what you think.

http://www.vertexmason.com

Cheers!

Drevlin
02-05-2008, 10:16 AM
Hey, having just finished my portfolio website and waiting crits on it i think its only fair i give my two cents on anyone else seeking the same :)

First of, I have read alot of "how to do your portfolio" guides when putting mine together and your site instantly breaks a few rules. This stuff is comming from a few guides i could link you up with if you're interested but here are the quick notes:

You should not have a splash screen. The first thing the recruiter wants to see is your art, so it should be on the first page, and "in the viewers face"

You should be able to navigate between pictures with the press of a button. As it is now, you click an image, get it full screen and you have to go back to the main page using the browsers back button, select a new image and repeat. Too much work, a recruiter is short on time and probably has 100 more portfolios waiting. If the art isnt easy to access they might not bother at all.

You should not have so much text, no "news" section is needed. The recruiter is not interested in anything other than what kind of job you're looking for and your primary skills, a few samples thereof and your resume/cv.

You dont have a resume. Dont expect to get a job untill you do. Make it available in .PDF too so its quick and easy for a recruiter to save it to hd. If you need help typing one i can fix you up with a few guides for that aswell. :)
You might wanna consider putting together a "picture pack" of your best work and put that up as a download aswell.

You have work-in-progress stuff in your portfolio. I dont know how recruiters feel about that but i would want that in another section on your site and only have finished projects in your actual portfolio. Maybe make a "Work in progress" or "scrapbook"? :)

I'll write more if i can think of anything else. :)

*
Just saw your demoreel. You might wanna put in some text saying what assets you have made. As it is now i'm seeing all this amount of things on the screen and i have no idea if its yours, if its stock stuff or what. Kudos to HAVING a demoreel though. :) Thats one of those projects i've never come around of doing but probably should.

GradiusCancer
02-05-2008, 02:50 PM
This is the article
http://www.thejonjones.com/2005/10/07/your-portfolio-repels-jobs/

Your entire portfolio should JUST be your environments page. It BLOWS your main page out of the water in terms of quality, organzation, etc.


As far as everythign else goes:

No splash page (adds another useless click to a portfolio)

Poor organzation. I didn't even know you had a 2nd gallery at the bottom until I scrolled down. All thumbnails should be together. Additionally all the thumbs of the same project should be together (deer head thumb at top, deer head scene thumb at bottom).

Remove "News" you don't need news, it's a portfolio "wuh, I updated my portfolio!" yea, we get it, we see new images.

Need resume, need downloadable version.

Unfinished pieces are not portfolio pieces. I'm talking about this
http://www.vertexmason.com/img_misc_02_lr.jpg

overall, I'd remove the characters, the environments greatly outshine them, and all people are going to remember are those not-so-hot characters instead of your good environments.

Specific things that shouldn't be on the main page:
http://www.vertexmason.com/img_misc_01_lr.jpg
http://www.vertexmason.com/img_orbitsfear_map_04_lr.jpg
http://www.vertexmason.com/img_orbitsfear_map_01_lr.jpg
Again, I strongly suggest ditching this whole page for just your ENVs page. It is MUCH stronger.

I couldn't get your demo reel to play. As an employer, they aren't going to install special codex to see your reel. They'll just skip it as soon as it doesn't load.

Horror
02-05-2008, 03:37 PM
Thanks for the feedback so far guys.

Sounds like I'll be scrapping the splash page.

I'll probably scrap the "main" page and merge the demo reel and basic introduction into the top of the environments page.

- It's strange that the video didn't load Gradius, it's just a standard WMV. Was it not loading, or not loading fast enough? Shouldn't be a problem since it's under 10mb - maybe you clicked it right while I was updating it earlier :P

Should I bother making a scrapbook section for my WIPs or are recruiters only interested in finished work?

As for the resume, I'll have it up within the day hopefully. Along with a downloadable MS word version / PDF or both?

I have changed my images to load on a separate page instead of the current page.

Please let me know if there is anything else I need to consider. I really want to get it right this time.

Drevlin
02-05-2008, 03:55 PM
you could make it both word and .pdf but i would recomend .pdf above word. But hey, its not like its HARD making an extra link and giving the option. could have them in the same file even :)
Other than that, Chris raised a few good pointers and stole my link pimping oppertunity... damn you :P

GradiusCancer
02-05-2008, 10:01 PM
I thought I had all the hot codec, but I reckon I did not. You could always be sure to have options, such as MOV to compliments the WMV, hell, maybe even a Youtube link. Better safe than sorry, but to be honest, I've never made a demo reel. *shrug*

You can have a WIPs section, but that's really only for you, and ends up being a pain in the ass to keep updated since you're always working on it...or scrapping the work leaving it up there to how you don't finish work. ;)

Speaking of updating, I believe in the simplest site possible. I make a lot of my stuff with Photoshop's Automate Web Gallery these days. It gives me exactly what I want with no hassle.

Horror
02-06-2008, 02:45 PM
Okay, I've gone ahead and rearranged everything. I'd have to say I prefer the change. So what do you guys think, have I hit the nail on the head or am I still off?

Thanks for the help so far!

http://www.vertexmason.com (http://www.vertexmason.com/)

new2LW
02-07-2008, 03:51 AM
Glad I stumbled upon this thread. I havn't seen very many on how to set up your website.

Drevlin, the back button for navigating back to the main page after viewing an image is a bad idea? I've thought about this before and I'm not sure how to go about making it faster. If you have it open in a new window then they still have to close that window or minimize to get to back to the main page which comes out to the same amount of button pushes. Also, I'd rather avoid flash or anything else, just incase. As of right now, my site works really well on my girlfriends iphone :) I'm aiming on having anything that's able to open a website to be able to browse my page.

If anyone looks at my site, ignore the paragraph at the top. That will be gone when I finish my site.

Andrew, your site is looking really good. Watched the reel, don't know what the moose is saying had it on mute, but I was amused watching him jabber. Have to look at it all a little closer later. I did seem to have slow load times on the reel, if it's 10 megs, and the pictures. I wonder if your web host is slow or if my connection is pokey right now...

Horror
02-07-2008, 05:06 AM
Thanks Eric, glad you like it.

I hope my host isn't too slow. It's fast for me, but I'm only a few hundred kilometers from it.

You can't hear what the deer is saying anyway, since I just have a music track playing - but if you're wondering, he's saying:

"What have we here? Another poor fool ripe to be swallowed up by the denizens of this aweful place. It's unusual for a humble taxidermied head such as myself to assist the living, but you mortals provide such a spectacle, it's becoming impossible for me to resist now days. Up stairs you will find a lever to open a gate to the city center. Keep on your toes though, or you may end up like that know-it-all who came through earlier. Fare well!"

veedo
02-07-2008, 05:50 AM
it seems that my connection times out each time i try to load it =/
would like to see it though :P used to be really into web design

Horror
02-07-2008, 08:12 AM
Damn, that can't be right. The main page is 444kb with all the images, so it shouldn't take long to load at all, even if it was hosted in Antarctica... Maybe my host was just screwing up - It has been doing some strange things today.

I Hope not too many people have this problem. Especially recruiters.

JYoung
02-07-2008, 01:35 PM
Site works fine for me, and the .wmv loads plenty fast.

Drevlin
02-09-2008, 10:02 PM
new2LW, i think you misunderstand.
My concern is that you cant navigate to the next image in the gallery with the click of a button, as in select one image, it opends and from that page you can select the next image and it opens in the same window. Next/Previous buttons on the same page as each image, you see?

Horror
02-10-2008, 12:38 AM
it opends and from that page you can select the next image and it opens in the same window. Next/Previous buttons on the same page as each image

This would still come back to the matter of effort for the recruiter though wouldn't it? Are they really going to want to click next...next...next...next...? Or would they rather click three or four images that actually interest them from the main page? I don't know, I'm not a recruiter :shrug:

new2LW
02-11-2008, 12:30 PM
Drevlin, I get it. So they can do either/or, close the window to go back to the main page or just push next to go to the next image. Btw, your site has to many /// in your signature.

-edit- Andrew, your site seems to be loading faster now. Maybe your host was just doing maintenance?

copain
02-11-2008, 01:12 PM
hey horror

nice work you got there.
Looks like you've been getting some good feedback on your site.

To answer you question about the next button:
it is the way i prefer it, giving the user the choise to visit your site they want, by a next button or a back button.

good luck
steve

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