In this module, you will learn what a website is, what a content management system is, what you need to know to choose the best content management system for you, and some basic design best practices. At the end, you will complete an individual assignment in which you create a wireframe of your ideal personal website's homepage. This module will help you plan for your artist's website in your group projects.
This may seem really basic, but do you know what a website is? It's a collection of web pages (documents made up of code), images, videos, and other digital assets that are hosted on web servers and accessible from the internet. Websites are usually accessible via HTTP (Hypertext Transfer Protocol), a protocol for getting data off of a web server and onto your internet browser. The following video gives a quick and dirty summary.
Unless you have previous web experience, it is highly recommended that you choose a hosted CMS for this class.
There are many CMS options, many of them free. Wikipedia has a massive and overwhelming list. While my personal recommendation is to use Wordpress.com, you are free to use whatever method or CMS you would like to create your semester project artist's website.
One of the most important features you should look for in your CMS is responsive design, so keep an eye out for that.
Use the tabs at the top of this box to learn more about some of the different CMS options.
*Wordpress.org is a separate product that requires a hosting solution
By using a CMS, you eliminate some of the pitfalls associated with web design since you'll be working with pre-existing templates designed by professionals. Still, there are tips you'll want to consider as you customize your site.
You should only use media you own or media that is copyright-free on your website. This guide will help you find public domain and creative commons media.
This is the most important part of your site, and the part you will want to focus on the most. Your landing page should have links and embeds to your social media, including calls to action (such as links to follow, like, etc); signup for your mailing list (Mailchimp or otherwise); info about incentives; and a video embed of an album trailer or promotional video. Try and get all of your info above the fold so your user doesn't have to scroll down to see everything. You can also use Linktree or the Pivot feature on SmartURL to create a landing page just for purchasing your music, and link to this on your website landing page.
This is an individual assignment. Create a wireframe, or rough sketch, of your ideal personal website's homepage. Your wireframe should show...
You can use Powerpoint, Google Slides, Keynote, or wireframe.cc (note that the free version of wireframe.cc does not let you save your work!).
Submit your wireframe as an attachment or link* in Canvas.
*If you are using Google Slides, make sure you have enabled sharing