Creating this website

Before I forget how I made this site, I wanted to share the thought process in creating it and hopefully this can help other people to design a website that works for them.

Why WordPress + EasyWP

For my art resources and tutorial site, I host it for free on Netlify and use Hugo, a static site generator. The advantages are flat file delivery and easy content management with markdown files. Cons include slower updates because I need to code to change anything, though minor edits are done in Forestry, a content management system. For that site, which I created to learn something about HTML, CSS, JavaScript and web development, it makes sense and is worth the hassle. If interested in going this route, I also wrote a guide on creating a static site.

However, I did not really feel like managing two websites that way, so I pay a bit extra to host my WordPress website on EasyWP for ~8 dollars a month. I picked EasyWP for hosting after searching through a lot of threads. One plus is it integrates with my domain registrar NameCheap. There are tons of options, and I recommend doing your research to see which one works best for you.

Themes and Plugins

I wanted to create a minimal website, so I went with the free version of the OceanWP theme and customized it to my liking. It didn’t take that long because I went for a sleek, minimal look.

Commission forms are handled in AirTable while the contact form is created in WPForms Lite (free version).

The portfolio Lightbox is served by a pair of plugins called Meow Gallery and Meow Lightbox. Their free versions are great and fully featured, and I love how easy it was to implement a stylish portfolio homepage.

The little print store is managed with WooCommerce, which is free. I used to have my website hosted on Shopify, but I did not have the time or the income from my art to host that ($29 per month). It is the best in its class for e-commerce, but I didn’t want to use it until I had more time to invest in marketing/product design/etc. I do plan on keeping my Etsy listings for a bit, but may remove them in the future as prices are hiking there.

Brief closing thoughts

Personal portfolio is a really nice thing to have, and I really enjoyed making it.

SSL should be a priority before officially launching your website. There are a few free options available, and I used the one integrated with EasyWP.

Customizing your website with Blocks and CSS can be a lot of fun. ‘

You have so many options besides WordPress, and I recommend taking the time to look into it.

Thanks for looking!

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