05 March, 2008

Lightbox Portfolio

Be sure that your digital portfolio is well designed and that it showcases your best work. Your animation portfolio may include a series of drawings, paintings and lifedrawings to now only show off your knowledge of anatomy, figure construction but it also give one insight into you aesthetic sensibilities. You can tell a lot from about someone's maturity by looking at a drawing or painting.

You can create this in a number of ways, one way is to use the automated web galleries in Photoshop, or you can use of the pre-existing applications available for free on the internet. In the digital web portfolio class that I teach, we have a long discussion about the pros and cons of each, and recently, there was a lot of interest among my students in wanting to use the "Ligthbox" Portfolio application.

The design and presentation is attractive and "sexy". When a user clicks an image, the entire page will darken and your image will be framed and cropped in a simple elegant animated style. From a usability standpoint, it keeps the user on your site, and will stay on the page as long as they wish...very very nice. Navigation is clean, simple and minimal just the way I like. I've added it to my portfolio and can viewed here.

The jury is still out if this can still be viewed on a majority of the machines, and for the most part, it does. No complaints yet. This is an alternative to using the Simpleviewer Portfolio, an attractive Flash Based portfolio, made by Airtight Interactive which can found by clicking here, is also very nice and easy to create.

The hard part is installing it in your webpage, especially if you are not used to Javascript, it may be a struggle, it took our class about a week to play and to search for a site that explained things well. It is however, easy to do. Simply follow Justin Lyric's instructions on his blog below. You are going to download the files from his blog and place these in your the main folder of your site, paste four lines of javascrip into your header and finally, you are going to add the "rel=" tags to each of your "href" link tags. Access Justin's site below.


"Lightbox" was created by Lokesh Dhakar. More information about the "Lightbox" portfolio can be found on his site here. Thanks Guys.

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