New Mobile Friendly Site for Mary Baker Art

Apple Trees, Painting by Mary Baker
Apple Trees © Mary Baker

I had no idea that mobile friendly websites were so important. I finally figured out what to do. I used a service called GoMobi, which is part of my web hosting package. I was able to create a web friendly site that looks a  lot like my Mary Baker Art website. To see the new mobile friendly version please go here. I use WordPress for the Mary Baker Art Blog (as well as The Newburyport Blog) and the theme I use is “mobile friendly,” so no worry there.  But the website is not mobile friendly, and now I am very much relieved!! Who knew that artists now needed mobile friendly sites as well as regular websites, not me. And I’d like to thank Hal Fickett of Hal Fickett and Company for making me aware of the issue, and helping me to think through what to do–awesome guidance from a smart and thoughtful person.

Website Design

I’ve decided to expand Mary Baker Art to not only include realistic oil paintings, but to also include web help and website design. So I’ve “launched” Mary Baker Design, that is part of Mary Baker Art, but is totally devoted to designing websites and web help.

I seem to have a hidden geek gene, which I am hoping in this lousy economy (recessions are never kind to the arts) will come in handy.

I’ve known for quite a while how to design websites and a lot about web stuff, but it’s been a blast giving myself a two month crash course in designing websites and blogs. It is just amazing how much learning information there is out there on the World Wide Web.

I’ve approached the whole project as if I was preparing for an art show. I did drafts of about ten website designs and then picked three to really concentrate on. And because I’m “new,” or at least officially “new,” to the website design world, I thought I would structure it so that I could give the three websites away for free. They are in WordPress blog software format, which is incredibly versatile. The person who downloads a website can make it look like a blog, a website or a combination of both. They put their own content, title, description, as well as their own information on the two menu bars.

Because I live in the New England seacoast city of Newburyport, Massachusetts, I decided that I would start with images of Newburyport for the first website designs. The first website includes one of Newburyport’s most beloved historic photographs, the “Clam Shack Workers,” which is at the top of this post. The historic photograph is in the public domain in the Archival Center at the Newburyport Public Library, which is an incredible resource. I’ve included a photograph of the website “Clam Shack” itself. Maybe eventually I will start to design websites specifically for artists.

The Wonders of Photoshop

As we enter, or already have entered, into this lousy economy 2009, where “the arts” have taken a tremendous hit, I’ve decided to tap into my “inner geek.” I’ve always loved Photoshop, and as a painter I have always felt that Photoshop is one of those “guilty pleasures.”

What would literally take me years to paint, I can accomplish in Photoshop in 30 minutes. Instant gratification. Presto. One of the things that I have also been doing, is learning all about designing websites. And I love it. It’s been enormously rewarding. The present design for the Mary Baker Art-Blog is a very own Mary Baker, Mary Baker Art creation. As a painter, the pink tube at the top would have taken me a very long, long time to paint, but in Photoshop, it’s a zip.

And I’ve also been experimenting with how to create different frames for the web for my paintings in Photoshop, which is an amazing amount of fun. In this post is a painting of the fields, where I live, in Newburyport, Massachusetts, a small oil on paper, in an experimental Photoshop frame.