Thursday, December 08, 2011

in the beginning

before there were hand weights, moms hoisted babies
In case you missed it, in addition to getting ready for the holidays, I'm in the process of a website revamp. What I've learned from nearly a decade in the "biz" is that when a person or a business embarks on building or redoing a website, what they're really doing is deciding what they want to be when they grow up. It's inevitable.

You have to consider bios, mission statements, values, brand promises, blah, blah and blah. The imagery questions alone can send a committee into a frenzied panic:

Blue is so 2005, financial services! Green can look so pukish with certain browsers! Make my logo bigger!

Now that I'm wearing the client hat--you'd think I'd know better. That I'd draw from years of experience on the other side of the conference table. But, no. Sadly, I have big ideas that don't really work, technologically. I want layers of stuff to look like one composition. Seamlessness and beauty. Is that too much to ask?

my first toys were german paperbacks
Not surprisingly, the area I'm wrestling most with are the visual elements of my new site. In particular, the images I want on my bio page. I started off with a head shot--your basic sort of professional, sort of whimsical author-type picture. But, trying to find one image that all the time stands for who I am and what I write and how I look, well, let's just say it took my narcissistic tendencies to the stratosphere. That is why I'm not having a mere headshot on my new site. I'm having a whole damn slide show. Fuck it.

And, like Julie Andrews in that Sound of Music number sings, I'm starting at the very beginning. Back when I was a clueless, myopic infant who thought the world one big marvel. It is my story after all.

What about you guys? What's your idea of the perfect writerly headshot?


  1. I love the baby photos.

    The perfect head shot depends on the person, I think. Some people do well with the straight on smile or straight on serious. Put another person on a horse or against a fence. On a motorcycle.

    Mine will probably be my ass poking out of the clothes dryer.

  2. You crack me up, Lisa. I love your smiling social media face head shots. There's a certain mystery to your look -- though the ass/dryer image certainly tells a story!

  3. i'm so far behind here, all apologies.

    i love the new site design with julia stoop's photos. and these family shots i think are perfect.

    you're so very right with the website design and trying to figure out who you are. earlier this year when i started doing freelance, i drove myself crazy trying to do one site for everything: my writing and the writing i do for money. it wouldn't work. now i have two websites and am still wondering about only having one email address (that's the same domain as my fun writing site) and what that means and what that represents to whatever client i may be contacting.


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