Website overhaul completion > aka: LAUNCH DAY!!

GUYS! What a gigantic labor of love this has been! I really can't put into words how excited I am to be writing this blogpost....because writing this specific post means the past 6-months of work, sweat, maybe a few has all, FINALLY, come together!! AHHH!!!

Sometime during the middle-ish of 2016, I got bit by that bug of change. Entrepreneurs, you know the one...the one that says hey you should update your website, hey you should rehaul your social media, hey what if you revamped your logo!? Yeah. That bug. He's a nasty little thing. 

At that time, I of course had absolutely no spare time to devote to this project, and put it on the back burner until almost the end of the year. Once I got started on this gigantic overhaul, I quickly realized that as much as I wanted it to change, and as much as I was pouring into a new design - I was also totally forcing it. And ultimately, forced work will never be my best work. So after a few self pep talks, I took a step back. I decided that I would work on the site as inspiration hit me, not because I was on a time schedule. 

Thus, it took about 6 months to complete, ha. But I definitely feel better knowing this site grew when I felt inspired, when I felt creative, and not because I said "Hey you have 5 weeks, get this crap done already!" Ugh. I never have handled the coach/drill sergeant approach to life very well. 

I'm soooo happy with how everything turned out, and I'm SO happy that today it all went live! 

- The new homepage -

This first page of my site changed the absolute most, and it's kinda sorta (ENTIRELY) my favorite of allllll the pages! I desperately wanted a set of images, gallery style, to be full-width across my site, and I wanted them to of course, shift from one to the next all by itself. It took a smidgen of custom code, but just look at it now! I LOVE IT! 

I also really wanted my homepage to show a bit more of my branding, and to be more "soft" - I think that also got achieved with all the beige colored buttons. (neutrals lover alert!)

Not to mention that I'm way happier with the overall way the homepage directs visitors to so many other aspects of the site! 

- The new about page - 

I had been hiding brand new headshots for....forever. Those suckers are now seeing all the light of day! Every photo of yours truly across the entire site is brand spankin' new! 

I wanted to be a bit more real about the girl behind it all over here, and the fact that photography was never my first choice. It was acting. That fact is equal parts true, random, and funny (or at least, I think so!) Of all actress? But, I really truly thought that was everything I wanted for the longest time! 

The about page also introduced a new little section, "five random facts" - and I tried to be as random as possible! Tell me dear ones, do you too, absolutely, love love love onions? 

- The new experience page - 

Oh yes, the page that breaks down exactly what it looks like to work with me - something that I hope never looks or feels like "work", just a time together of fun, lots of laughing, and images that represent the real you.

The fact that I'll never make you say cheese, and that when we first meet, priority number one will be letting me see pics of your pets, and the truth of the matter that on your wedding day, I totally might cry.

This page is topped off at the end with the clear cut, 8-step breakdown of what the process is for me and the amazing couples that come into my life! 

- The new investment page - 

A mandatory page for any site, because it's all fun and games until we realize things aren't free? Am I right?? But no, in all honesty...your photography choices are an investment, as they should be! An investment that is well worth it, because after everything else is all gone - images are what last! 

This updated page has way more information on it than I've shared in the past! 

- The new kind words page -

This little corner of the site is brand new! I've never had a "kind words" page before, but I decided I wanted a section for new and potential clients to read what past clients have had to say about their time with me! Because sometimes, people like me, and when they do, they say really incredibly heartfelt things that make me get all sappy and emotional. 

I pulled just a few quotes from some of my couples that I love oh so much, slapped 'em up with an image from their big day, and put it all on display. 

What else looks different!? 

  • Gallery pages!
    Well, the gallery pages are all laid out differently....but if you are a sly sneaky little thing, you likely saw that well before now. Sometimes in the land of web design, it's impossible, or way too difficult to roll out new designs and keep it hidden. I can't talk this level of tech, but just know it wasn't possible to hide those pages without tripling my work overall, SO they went live as they were created as opposed to being tucked away and unveiled with everything else! 
  • The blog!
    The blog also had a few big changes (all of which I'm obsessed with!) - but again, it was impossible to hide those because a blog is a blog, and starting from scratch on a new blog all for the sake of hiding the new features was a big fat heck to tha nooooooo! 

What are the new blog features you ask? Well - 
- Does anyone recall that on the main page of the blog, the thumbnail image for each post used to be a teeny little square? Yeah, I sure remember, because I couldn't stand it! With the help of custom code, those are now horizontal, rectangular shaped images that (wait for it) show the entire image!!! Yaaaaassss! This was a massive victory for me. You have no idea. 

- If you open up any blogpost and scroll to the bottom - you'll see that now there are image links of "related posts" to suggest other posts you might like reading. Gotta keep y'all clicking, of course! 

  •  Fonts!
     Yep, that's right - again, you've seen it before now, font changes were rolled out in real time, but yes,  all the fonts you see across the site are new! Did you also know I'm a majorrrrrr font nerd? Yeah, big time. Ask my husband how many times we'll be driving down the highway and I'll point to a billboard and screech "That's Marydale!!!!"

    That's really about the whole story, friends! Thanks SO much for reading!!