Monday, 31 July 2017

How to Optimize a Web Design for Video Content

As videos become more widely used across the internet, more and more websites are starting to incorporate video content as well. Often however this is done fairly haphazardly, without taking into account that video by its very nature is different from other forms of content. Frankly speaking, slapping a video into an existing web design without carefully considering its impact may do more harm than good in many cases.

In order to optimize a web design for video content, there are several factors that need to be taken into account:


When video content is part of a web page it is safe to say that it is intended to be prominent. That is why as a rule of thumb all videos should be placed in such a way that they are high up in the visual hierarchy of the design – with most located just below the headline. At very least any and all video content should be above the fold, as the last thing you want is for it to go unnoticed, or worse, start to automatically play in the background.

Video dimensions

The dimensions of the video (i.e. its width and height) is important in terms of how it interacts with other elements. Because video content is generally intended to be prominent, the dimensions can be large relative to other elements. Additionally it is important to consider mobile devices too and ideally use responsive design to adjust the video dimensions depending on the size of the screen.


Image source

While it isn’t uncommon to find videos that are set up to automatically begin playing when a website loads, these tend to have fallen out of favor from a design standpoint. Not only do viewers find them unappealing, but they can significantly increase the loading time of a webpage as well. As such from a design point of view it is often best to stay away from autoplay, and instead use a click-to-play system instead.

Loading time

As mentioned previously, autoplay can increase the loading time of a webpage, but loading time in general is a factor in its own right because of the affect it can have on bounce rates and search engine rankings. Considering your website load is going to be increased by the presence of video, it is important your design takes that into account and does not include too many other ‘heavy’ elements that might slow it down even further.

Search engine and social media optimization

Although mostly unseen, it is important your web design contains key ingredients for search engines such as metadata, and transcripts containing relevant keywords and text. Additionally because videos are very own shared on social media it would be a good idea to take that into account as well and use additional standards such as open graph and Twitter cards to optimize the content if it is ever shared.

As you can see each of these factors has a part to play in making a web design video-friendly and ensuring that it performs well – albeit on different fronts. That being said none of the factors are particularly complicated, and so long as you are aware of the part they have to play and take them into account you should be on the right track.

Considering it is easier than ever to create video content using any kind of video recorder as well as the benefits that video content can provide, it makes sense to start including it. Now that you know how optimize your web design, you should be able to reap the rewards while avoiding the pitfalls associated with it.

The post How to Optimize a Web Design for Video Content appeared first on SpyreStudios.

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Sunday, 30 July 2017

25 of the Best Photographer Portfolio Websites

Best Photography Websites

Web designers often browse through portfolio websites of other designers for inspiration and ideas that can be used in their own work. Photographers, like designers, have a need to display an attractive portfolio for their websites visitors, and many photographers have excellent portfolio sites. The portfolio site showcases the work to potential clients, usually provides some biographical information about the photographer, and makes it easy for people to contact the photographer...

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Friday, 28 July 2017

My Journey Of Learning Programming Through Flatiron School #34

My name is Mason Ellwood, and I’m currently working on Flatiron School’s Online Full Stack Web Development Program. Each week, I’ll be writing about my experience, what I’m learning, and tips on learning to code.

Today I would like to deviate from code review and talk about something a little more important, time management, and how I have been able to envision an end point with the school. The Flatiron school, in a simple sense, is huge especially the online course that I am involved in. It is very expensive and you have to be very involved in the school to really be invested and take full advantage of the extent of knowledge that is available to you. I did not realize this until I officially began working full time in the school.

With this understanding of what was to come, I was able to provide myself with safe goals to complete per day to view an endpoint in the future. This was going well, I did not set goals that were too high, but were tangible to compete with everything else going on with work and so forth. Upon finishing the material that was mandatory to enter into the full school lesson program I was ready financially to begin working through the course material full time, all day every day. But then, as it always does, life happens….

Around this time, I had received a phone call from my mom and she told me she was diagnosed with cancer. Because of the severity of this cancer that she was diagnosed with, they said they would begin chemo that night. So off to Tucson I went, scratching all my study plans. For the next week, I stayed at the hospital with her, all day for roughly 15 hours per day. Only leaving to eat and sleep at my parent’s house. Through this time, it was hard…. And if anyone of you has had this happen to you I know from a viewer standpoint of how nasty cancer and treatment really is. Once the initial shock of the stark turn my life just took, I began thinking about school again. I began taking my laptop to the hospital every day with me.

My mom was unable to really talk through this time, it gave me a large window to make real progress with the coursework provided by The Flatiron School while being able to be there for the family to do whatever they needed me to do for them to help in any way I could. So this was my new normal, living in Tucson, Arizona hanging out at a hospital all day, helping with my mom and setting aside anytime I could to be there for her.

This was the next 5 months of my life, working and caretaking. Being there for my mom, while working through this cancer together and working through school when I had the time. This set me back in school quite a bit. I was not making the progress that I had, but still slowly inching my way forward.

During this time we got connected with M.D. Anderson in Houston, Texas. So off to Texas we went. This past month and a half I have spent in Houston, preparing for the stem cell transplant that was approaching.

Every day in Houston I would wake up, pack a lunch, be at the hospital from nine o’clock to three o’clock. Then head to the gym, eat supper, and head back to the hospital until 12 o’clock. My time spent at the hospital I would work on school, it being really the only time I had. On July 4th, 2017 was the big day, my mom was ready for her stem cell transplant, her new birthday. If any of you know this is a big deal. Basically, it is a restart of her immune system, so when she gets to come out of the hospital she will have the immune system of a child, no vaccinations, and susceptible to anything that the average person would be able to fight off with a built up immune system.

For the next 15 day, she was unable to eat and could not leave her bed. So I sat with her, day after day, working on school, and helping with mundane things like plugging in her phone or ordering food on the phone. Things that you don’t think about until you are unable to do them. As well as making sure she was all caught up on the new season of The Bachelorette, which I hate to say, but it’s actually pretty addictive haha.

Though this time, I completed Ruby, built my first gem, ran business meetings, as well as had interviews with the school upon completing a major portion of the class work all from a hospital room at M.D. Anderson in Houston, Texas.

On July 20th we found out that is could be the cure, and she could possibly be cancer free and was released from the hospital.

We were headed home!

I do not mean to write a post about how I was able to complete all this school work, how I am this great guy, or a sob story. And I hope you don’t take it that way because that is not how I intended it. But things happen in life and you have to adjust. I set aside this time for myself to really progress in school, and with one phone call that all changed. I did not plan on moving to Houston for a couple months, nor spending long extended time in Tucson, but life goes on. This time with my mom has given me the strength to push through emotionally, has created a closer bond with my family than I have ever had. It has given me the time management skills to always know that I actually do have time to get what i needed done, even though it’s not quite the way you wanted that time to look.

My mom is cancer free, and I am more than halfway done with school. Which in a warped way, feels pretty good.

Read More at My Journey Of Learning Programming Through Flatiron School #34

from Web Design Ledger

Thursday, 27 July 2017

How to Create a Spring Header in Adobe Muse

Creating a Spring Header in Adobe Muse - Adobe Muse CC - Muse For You

How to Create a Spring Header in Adobe Muse. No Coding Skills Required.

 Muse For You - Adobe Muse CC Adobe Muse CC Logo

The warm weather is finally here! Being a resident of Wisconsin you have no idea how grateful I am for that. Yes the days can be muggy and humid at times but I’ll take that over 12 inches of snow any day :P. With that being said I’ll segue into today’s article.

Lately, I’ve been creating different headers in Adobe Muse to showcase how to use Adobe Muse and to give ideas for building your own headers. The theme of this week’s header is Spring.

Creating a Spring Header in Adobe Muse - Adobe Muse CC - Muse For You

The tutorial is composed of 8 steps. They are:

1. Setting Largest Breakpoint

2. Adding Spring Text 1

3. Adding Spring Text 2

4. Masking Image in Photoshop

5. Adding Paragraph Text

6. Adding Contact Button

7. Adding Logo and Menu

8. Finishing Touches

We use various tools in Adobe Muse to create this header. For the fonts we use the text panel to set the font type, size, alignment, tracking, leading, and line height. These options are very useful when getting the text just how you want it.

For the image we use Adobe Photoshop to mask the image within an abstract looking image. This lends itself to a unique visual for the header.

We also use other tools, like stroke, the built-in menu widget, along with the Adobe Muse pinning options.

Adobe muse is very powerful tool and my goal is to make it easier to use by demonstrating fun, easy to create headers :).


For more video tutorials and widgets for Adobe Muse visit

Happy Musing!

Read More at How to Create a Spring Header in Adobe Muse

from Web Design Ledger

10 Business and Startup WordPress Themes For A Better Website

Today, we live in a highly competitive world. Thus, it is very important for your business to have the advantage to survive.

How to make your startup or small business stand out from the competition? One sure way is to have an award-winning website to promote your goods or services.

Building a business takes careful planning in many different areas. Moreover, executing those plans can take time. Yet, once a content of a company’s website has been determined, building the website can be done in short order. This is quite easy when the right tools for the job are at your fingertips.

Whether you’re simply looking for inspiration, or ready to get started, you are in the right place. You’re sure to find one or more out of the following collection of WordPress themes to be helpful.

If you need to have a quality website up and running in nothing flat, you need to look no further.

Be Theme

How is Be Theme good for building startup or small business websites?

Being the biggest has its advantages, and Be Theme is the biggest WordPress theme to date. Bigger means having more tools (features), ideas, and concepts than the other guy.

One of the things that makes Be Theme ideal for startups and small business is its selection of 260+ pre-built websites that address every nook and cranny of the business world. Most pre-built websites are multi-page affairs, all are customizable, and it’s not at all difficult to find one that has the functionality you want your website to exhibit.

Be’s Muffin Builder and Options Panelmake building a website a piece of cake, and having more than 200 shortcodesto work with means there’s no need for coding. A pre-built website can also be used to rapidly create a prototype to share with a client for feedback.

If the thought of being able to start from scratch, and get a website up and running in 4 hours appeals to you, give Be Theme a look.



Why is The Core a good choice for startups and small businesses?

The Core is a multipurpose WordPress theme that promotes different themes or website examples for different uses. One of these themes, Cribs, is dedicated to creating small business websites. Thus, if you or your client is a small business owner, it makes good sense to invest in a theme that focuses on providing the basic layouts and functionality your business’s website requires.

The Core comes with a visual page builder, and tons of design options. Your website will be fully responsive, WooCommerce ready, and via a WPML plugin, translatable into the most commonly used languages. Discounted purchase plans are available for building a single website, or an unlimited number of websites. For the latter, you can pay either a one-time fee or an annual fee. Either way, you can expect dedicated support along with free updates.


What makes Oshine a good choice for small businesses and startups.

Oshine is a creative, multi-layout WordPress theme that comes with 27 striking demos featuring clean and modern designs that are applicable to building any type or style of website. The demos are customizable, and since they can be installed with a single click, you can get started immediately.

Oshine has its own, unique visual page builder, Tatsu. Since it’s a front-end builder, building and editing pages is a snap. The powerful options panel gives you total control over the layout design process, plus you’ll have more than a dozen menu and header options to work with.

For creatives, Oshine offers unlimited ways to create a stunning portfolio, and if you have products to sell, or a service to provide, the theme is WooCommerce and WPML compatible.


Why would Uncode be a good choice for small businesses and startups?

Uncode is a popular creative WordPress theme that was handcrafted by an experienced and award-winning team of designers and developers. Uncode is pixel perfect and ultra-professional in its presentation. It’s clean, modern layouts will satisfy almost any need.

Whether your intent is to produce a highly qualified e-commerce website, a magazine-style website, a corporate website, or simply a portfolio, Uncode will be an excellent choice.


What makes Ultra by Themify a great choice for startups?

Whether it’s to create a rapid prototype layout, or to build the final product, Themify’sdrag and drop pre-made row designs provides a super-fast and efficient way to build your pages. This modular approach also provides an easy way to update a page in an existing website. There are currently 34 editable pre-designed rows to select from, including FAQ, Banner, and Testimonial sections.


How is Houzez good for small businesses?

Houzez may not be the best fit for some small businesses, but this specialized WordPress theme is the best possible choice for creating a realtor’s or real estate agency’s website. The functionality most agencies need is already there, including property search, rate, and review, custom workflows, private messaging, and more.

Add content, and you can have a website up and running in hours, or even sooner.


KLEO – Ready To Go Theme For Your Business

How is KLEO a good choice for small startups?

KLEO is a community-focused, multipurpose BuddyPress theme. This is exactly the type of theme for creating websites that many startups, and more than a few businesses, could put into play to grow their customer or user base.

KLEO has plenty of demos, and it’s easy to install the plugins you may need. You can try KLEO for free, and test its options before you buy.


What does Kallyas have that startup and small business websites need?

Kallyas’s reputation speaks for itself. This nearly 5-year-old responsive theme, created by an experienced, customer oriented team, has been a top 15 best-selling WordPress theme since day one.

Kallyas is loaded with features, including 50+ pre-built websites, a simply amazing visual website builder, adaptive images, video tutorials, and dedicated support. Kallyas is a WordPress theme you can have fun with!


What makes Infinite the right choice for a small business or startup?

Infinite is a multi-purpose WordPress theme. It was created with a goal of providing a website solution for everyone. All the needed tools are there, so it’s simply a matter of checking out the pre-built website demos.

The demos fall in 4 categories: WooCommerce, Creative, Corporate, and Niche Retail and Services; one of which should fit a small business or startup nicely.



How is TheGem good for small businesses and startups?

Equipped with flexible features focusing on business, corporate and startup websites, delivered with outstanding designs for 50+ business concepts, and carefully developed by the best designers of the Behance network, TheGem will make your online brands stand out, and take your business to the next level.

The best thing is, it’s extremely easy in use. No coding is required. You can freely combine the pre-made demos per drag’n’drop with one another to create your own unique layouts. The 250+ content element styles, designed to cover the goals of any business or startup website make TheGem a reasonable investment.

To Wrap It Up

Finding the right theme for your small business or startup project can be difficult. However, no with this list of winning WordPress Themes. If there is a problem, it’s that of having to choose among several themes that are obviously just right for the job.

The good news is, you’re unlikely to make a poor choice. We’d like to hear what you have to say, or if you feel we’ve left something out. Happy website building!

Read More at 10 Business and Startup WordPress Themes For A Better Website

from Web Design Ledger

Wednesday, 26 July 2017

Best Books For Learning Web Development: The Ultimate Collection

best webdev coding books

Learning to code websites is a tough but rewarding goal. There’s a lot to learn and it takes quite a few months of practice to really get the hang of things. But with the right learning resources anything is possible, and that’s exactly why I created this guide. It’s a complete list of all the […]

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33 Sea and Summer Stock Photos (That You Can Use For Free!)

Autumn might be the most photogenic season, but summer is everyone’s favorite. It’s a time of year for friends, sunburn and parties. Stay chill during these dog days of summer with these summer stock photos featuring carnivals, seascapes, cocktails and kayaks.

Click on a summer stock photo to see its full resolution, or follow the links below each image to find their source. All of these images share a Creative Commons “Zero” license, meaning they are in the public domain and free from copyright. You’re free to do whatever you like with the images, but it’s nice to credit the creator when you can!

Summer Stock Photos

summer stock photos carnival

Photo by Hannah Morgan on Unsplash

Photo by Michael Mims on Unsplash

summer stock photos pool

Photo by Bruno Gomiero on Unsplash

summer stock photos drinksPhoto by Jez Timms on Unsplash

summer stock photos diverPhoto by Jakob Owens on Unsplash

summer stock photos lake kayak

Photo by Jeff Isaak on Unsplash


summer stock photos lake

Photo by Rebecca Georgia on Unsplash

summer stock photos lake

Photo by Tanja Heffner on Unsplash

summer stock photos ice cream

Photo by ian dooley on Unsplash

summe stock photo pool

Photo by Ishan @seefromthesky on Unsplash

summer stock photo beach

Photo by Leio McLaren on Unsplash

summer stock photo canyon

Photo by Jens Peter Olesen on Unsplash

summe stock photo road trip

Photo by on Unsplash

summer stock photo beach ocean

Photo by davide ragusa on Unsplash

summer stock photo

Photo by Glen Jackson on Unsplash

summer stock photo

Photo by Avi Richards on Unsplash

Photo by Nine Köpfer on Unsplash

Photo by Jeff Nafura on Unsplash

Photo by Jan Erik Waider on Unsplash

Photo by Justin Luebke on Unsplash

Photo by Bill Williams on Unsplash

Photo by Florian Klauer on Unsplash

Photo by Jeremy Bishop on Unsplash

Photo by baluda on Pixabay

summer stock photos oregon

Photo by tpsdave on Pixabay

summer stock photos pier

Photo by TorstenDorran on Pixabay

summer stock photos umbrella

Photo by Free-Photos on Pixabay

summer stock photos seascape

Photo by Pok_Rie on Pixabay

summer stock photos still life

Photo by Jill111 on Pixabay

summer stock photos hay bales

Photo by bogitw on Pixabay

summer stock photos deck chairs

Photo by Stevebidmead on Pixabay

summer stock photos amalfi

Photo by BrunoBordderr on Pixabay

summer stock photos impanema

Photo by eacuna on Pixabay


You might also like:

Skillfully Swapping Faces In Photoshop Without Making It Noticeable
34 Pristine Seascape and Ocean View Photographs
The Hottest Stock Photo Sources To Use This Summer

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