How to make an artist website (and why you need one)

Last Updated Feb 27, 2023

This article recommends the best website builder for artists, photographers, writers, and creative entrepreneurs who want to build a website that gets visited by lots of people. It compares various blogging platforms and websites, including Wix, Blogger, Squarespace, Weebly, and WordPress, and is written by an experienced high school teacher with a beginning audience in mind. It concludes with a step-by-step tutorial, showing the exact process used to set up a successful, high-traffic website.

How to make an artist website

Should I create my own website? ? ?

In 2011, I created a website to showcase my artwork and help high school art students get good grades. A year later, this site was getting over 1,000 hits a day (this became the website you’re reading, the Student’s Guide to Art). If I have learned anything from this experience, it is that the Internet has enormous value for creative people. Building a website is the most effective way to market your work, build a brand, and sell creative artwork, products, and services. What’s more, building a website is something even a high school student (someone with little funds and no prior web design experience) can do.

1000 visitors a day
Worried you don’t have the skills? I had no idea how to make my own website when I started and was intimidated by the prospect. I was the type of person who struggled to find the “power” switch on a computer. To say that it had technical problems was an understatement. Fortunately, creating a website was much easier than I had imagined. The graph above shows the daily visits to my website over the course of the first year, reaching almost 1200 visits per day in 12 months (The Art Guide for Students now gains millions of visits each year).

Websites for Artists and Other Creative People: Why They Matter

Galleries used to discover great art, manuscript writings chosen by editors. These days, everyday people discover great content firsthand. There is no longer a barrier between the artist and the masses. If you have an online presence, and your work can be found, shared, ‘pinned’ or ‘liked’, you can achieve a level of recognition once only dreamed of. A single image or blog post can receive thousands of views in a very short period of time; be seen by a large number of potential customers, admirers and fans. If you are an artist, photographer, writer (or any other creative entrepreneur), you need to harness the power of the Internet and create your own website as soon as possible.

Why platforms like Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, Flickr , DeviantArt, Behance, Saatchi Online, Fine Art America, Imagekind, RedBubble, Etsy and Tumblr are not enough

There are many social media platforms where content sharing is encouraged. These can be useful for promoting your own work, meeting others with similar interests, getting feedback, and reaching out to others through extended social networking. Being an active member of some of these sites can be a good idea, and can actually form a vital part of your online strategy, but these sites should complement, not replace, your own website. They should be used as a marketing outpost to drive traffic to your own website, not a substitute for it.

* A word of caution about free website builders/free portfolio websites

Many people search Google for ‘best free website builder for artists’ or ‘free website for artists’. Others are looking for more specific information, comparing various website builders, like Wix vs Weebly vs Blogger vs Squarespace vs Google Sites vs Adobe Spark Page and so on. These platforms, along with many others, offer customizable websites and are aimed at those looking for an easy way to showcase their work online (these platforms allow you to set up basic photography portfolio websites or graphic design portfolio websites, for example, usually with higher priced premium plans marketed alongside). These website builders are often slick and aesthetically pleasing, with drag-and-drop templates that appeal to beginners. In fact, they may be a suitable option for those who want to create a website to share with family or friends, or a temporary online portfolio, but they should never be used by someone who really wants their website to rank high on Google and be seen. by thousands of people every day.

To have the best chance of success, you should create your own original website.

Here’s why:

1. You need full control over appearance and design.

Aesthetics are important.Websites need to show your creativity and communicate style and individuality, helping you stand out from the crowd. This cannot be achieved with a standard page on a free site, using a template that looks like a million others. With your own website, you can select a great design theme and customize it however you want.

2. You should have an awesome website name, NOT yourname.freeservice.com.

A website name is the starting point for your branding. For as little as thirteen dollars a year, you can create the illusion that you are a professional worth investing in. Take your job seriously. Since original website names cost so little, there’s no excuse not to have one of your own.

3. You need to optimize your website so that it ranks high on Google.

If you can’t optimize your content for search engines, your website just floats around in cyberspace, depending on the endless promotion on social media. and friendly visits from friends. Google has a secret (and constantly updating) algorithm that it uses to determine where websites should appear in search results. When someone searches for something online, Google’s search engine performs a complex calculation (takes a fraction of a second) to estimate which of all the websites in the world they want to view. According to Search Engine Watch, 33% of people click on the first result displayed on Google, 18% on the second result, and even fewer on the third. If your website doesn’t appear on the first page of results, only a small percentage of people will find it.

SEO for artist websites
For example, when people type “A Level Art Ideas” into Google (“A Level Art” is the name of an international high school degree), Google ranks my website first. The first of 686,000,000 other web pages that Google believes might deal with this topic. In fact, you can see that the Art Guide for Students currently ranks first AND second for this term. Therefore, someone looking for advanced level art ideas is much more likely to click through and visit my website than anyone else.

One of the reasons why the Guide to art for students ranks high on Google is that our articles are comprehensive, highly detailed, and take weeks to write. Another reason is that our content is well optimized for search engines. This means that Google understands what each page is about and is therefore more likely to rank it high, so people can find us. In fact, you most likely landed on this article after googling “how to make a website for artists” or something similar. Well, this page is optimized for that phrase and many other similar terms!

Search engine optimization (SEO) is impossible on most free websites and social media platforms. To make matters worse, Google knows if your website was built using a free platform and may perceive your website accordingly: as less professional, less serious, and less important.

Unfortunately, sometimes These barriers (intended to encourage less tech-savvy audiences) can attract some shady characters like spammers looking for cheap and easy ways to set up dozens or hundreds of sites that add little to no value to the web. When it comes to auto-generated sites, our stance remains the same: if sites don’t add enough value, we generally consider them spam and take appropriate steps to protect our users from exposure to such sites in our natural search results. – Google Webmaster

In other words, with a free platform, you have to work much harder to convince Google that your content is worth ranking for, and still don’t have the tools to do so. this easy: you start with a handicap. This is one of the most important factors to consider when deciding whether to create your own website.

4. Schools and universities need to be able to see your content.

A growing number of schools and universities are blocking all access to free social media and blogging platforms because, as noted above, often they are used by spammers and those who share questionable content. Some teachers spend months building a website using a free platform, only for their school to later block this platform, as high school photography teacher Wendy Brown McElfish found out firsthand:

free ePortfolio site

Also Even if you have no direct connection to the education industry, there is a huge advantage in having your work discovered by educational institutions. For example, students in the UK often find my artist website and study my artwork. The schools then link to my website.Authentic links from relevant websites send a signal to Google that my website is of high quality (links from educational institutions are considered highly valuable). This, in turn, makes Google trust my website more and rank it even higher. As stated above, sites that rank highly get more visitors.

5. You need your work to be celebrated, not lost in the crowd.

When someone contemplates buying your artwork (or other creative products) on a social media platform or community website with Various sellers, buyers are often distracted by the countless items that appear in their feed. You want people to be funneled into your fantastic creations, without others competing for attention. On social or community websites, shoppers are easily seduced.

6. You must be in control of how you make money from your website.

If you have your own website, you are in complete control of your earning opportunities. You can sell artwork, products or services directly from the site. You can add advertising, search for sponsors, recommend affiliate products, embed print-on-demand articles, or simply focus on building your brand, popularity, and fame. Social media platforms and free website builders often place inappropriate advertising alongside their work or have strict policies governing how you operate your business on their platform. It is very common for free website builders to put their own branding all over their website, trying to direct their visitors back to them. Generating income from your own website is much easier. If you want to sell artwork online, for example, this can be accomplished in a matter of minutes by adding a “buy now” button next to the artwork. Alternatively, you can add professional shopping carts or any other business features.

7. You need to measure the number of visitors to your website and other important statistics.

‘Google Analytics’ and ‘Search Console’ are free tools created by Google that easily integrate with your own website . . Most of the free website builders or social media platforms do not allow you to use them and offer inferior stats if any. Google Analytics and Search Console provide detailed information about who visits your site. For example, you can see which countries visitors are from, how many minutes they spend on certain pages, which pages they leave immediately, and what they typed into Google before coming to your site. This information is invaluable. It helps shape and direct your creative work and improve your content for the future.

Google Analytics Reports Example
This Google Analytics report shows visitors to the Student Art Guide in real time. At that exact moment, 93 people were viewing the site, with 8 people reading our popular photography article. You can see the keywords that people typed into Google to get to the website; what pages they visit; in which country they are located and many other useful information. This helps me understand why people visit my site; what content they prefer; and what they would like my website to provide. This tool has helped me create an art website that receives millions of visitors a year. Without it, I’d be flying blind.

8. You need the ability to build an email list.

A few years ago, Facebook changed its newsfeed algorithm so that every ‘status update’ made from a Facebook business page is will show only a small percentage of followers. In order for posts to be shown to more fans, you now have to pay money to promote them, even to those people who have chosen to follow your page. As such, the value of having a large Facebook following decreased overnight, crippling many small businesses that relied on Facebook to reach their audience. Similarly, YouTube recently made significant changes to its algorithm, which affects the videos that are shown to viewers, making it harder for creators to watch their videos. YouTube also “shadow bans” certain content and demonetizes videos if it deems they fall outside of its ever-changing guidelines.

Social media platforms are self-interested businesses. If you have your own website, you have the option of having your audience securely share their email address with you. This means that you don’t need to be at the mercy of third parties: you can contact your followers whenever you want. An email list is an asset you can back up, giving you direct contact with your audience, no matter what. Almost every online entrepreneur regrets not starting an email list sooner. An email signup box can be added in a couple of minutes to your own website.

See Also:  How to Create a Logo Using Google Drawings

9. You should be able to easily move your website files from one location to another.

If you start with a free blogging platform and then realize you have to build your own website (as most who are serious about marketing their work online do), Moving your content from the free platform to your own website is often difficult and frustrating (may require manually cutting and pasting each element, recreating the entire website again). Whichever method you choose to create an online presence, it must be portable. Moving, downloading or backing up material from your own website is easy: you have access to each and every one of your files and can export them with a few clicks.

Also, if you decide to switch from one free website name (i.e. yourname.freeservice.com) to an original website name (i.e. yourname.com), you will lose any search engine authority you previously created with Google, requiring you to the new website will work its way up. rankings again from scratch.

10. 100% of the website must be owned by you.

When you create a website on a free platform, your website is actually a subsection of someone else’s site. Website providers can shut down unexpectedly, taking your content and followers with them. Those that offer free services are particularly vulnerable to collapse. For example, Wikispaces has the following message on its website:

As noted in our January 2018 communication and subsequent site banners; As of July 31, 2018, all classroom and free wikis have been disabled and can no longer be accessed.

In addition, platforms can block you or remove your files and you won’t there is nothing you can do about it. . They can suddenly be overtaken by a more successful platform, as happened when Facebook rose in popularity and MySpace waned. They can be sold to another company, which can handle things totally differently, like when SmugMug bought Flickr. If you have the potential to create a beautiful and impressive website, it is too risky that you are at the mercy of another company. It is too precious a resource. You need to build your own website and own it.

Why you need to build a website soon

If you’re serious about growing an online audience, you need to make your own website as soon as possible. Here’s why:

1. Older websites rank higher on Google.

There are many factors that influence where a website appears in search engines (the higher it ranks, your post, the more visitors your website will receive). Website age is one of these factors – a sign that your website is more likely to be a genuine and authority site. The sooner you start, the sooner you can start building your website’s authority with Google.

2. Website names are limited.

As time passes, there are fewer quality website names (known as “domain names”) available: your name may be. as I am no longer Many great domain names have already been bought and are being resold for thousands of dollars (the tutorial below shows you how to check which domain names are still available).

3. Lockdowns mean more and more people are buying products online

If ever there was a time to establish an online presence, it’s now. Many creative artists and entrepreneurs who previously contemplated building a website have urgently prioritized this activity, given the events of recent years. Many teachers are also deciding to create websites to help guide their students through distance learning. This adds a further flood of people buying domain names.

4. Your age and current circumstances are not a barrier to success.

You don’t need to wait until you have more time or become more “successful.” You are also not too young or too old for this type of ‘tech’ company. Building a website sounds daunting, but it only takes about an hour to get up and running. Many great websites are created by young people, with few funds or resources. Teens as young as 14 have had great success online. With parental permission, you can start while you are in high school. Creating a website can be a great project for a high school art, design, or technology student. With hard work, a website built during high school can generate income for when you’re in college or university. Also, the skills you learn while building a website can greatly help your job prospects upon graduation. The best thing is that the whole process is fun. It’s exciting and rewarding, almost addictive, to see people from all over the world visit your website and view your content, day after day.

What’s the best way to create an artist website (or any website, for that matter)?

There are two basic ways to create an original website. The first is to use an existing “content management system.” A content management system can be considered something like Microsoft Word.It is a program or tool that MUCH facilitates the process of creating a digital document. Content management systems are designed for the normal user, so coding is not necessary. They save time and money while allowing for unique creative results.

The second way to create a unique website is to hire developers (or learn to code yourself) and build the whole thing from scratch. Even if you have enough funds to hire a developer or know how to code, in almost all cases, it is advisable to use an existing content management system. This not only saves you time and money, but a site that is built from scratch is much more difficult to maintain since only the person who understands how it works is the one who built it. When you’re using a popular content management system, on the other hand, there are plenty of tutorials and forums online to share tips. If you ever get stuck, there are answers online for almost every question you can think of. Also, there are thousands of developers who specialize in every popular content management system. This means you’re not reliant on a single expert who knows your website well, and you’re not vulnerable if that expert leaves.

The bottom line: Unless you have a team of specialist developers and you’re trying to build something like the next Facebook, using an existing content management system is much better than your best option.

Which content management system should I choose?

Many site builders Free websites (such as Weebly, Wix, and Squarespace) are, in fact, a kind of content management system. However, these are simplified and tied to a single company, making them vulnerable to many of the weaknesses described above.

Major content management systems are ‘open source’: this means that they are maintained by a large collection of expert developers around the world (rather than being connected to a single company). As such, they follow best coding practices and stay up to date.

According to 2019 data, the world’s leading content management system is WordPress (used by 61% market), followed by Joomla (5%) and then Drupal (3%). WordPress is not only the most popular content management system, but an estimated 34% of all websites in the world run on it. I have been using WordPress since 2011 and I recommend it above all else. It is, without a doubt, the best website builder for artists, or anyone else who wants to create their own website. For entrepreneurs, bloggers, writers, or artists who want to market their services, promote products, or create any other type of content-based website or blog that is viewed by many people… WordPress is the best solution.

Free wordpress themes for artists
A sample of the 6,000+ free WordPress themes available, to suit any type of topic or niche.

WordPress can be customized to look like anything from a casual blog (an informal blog website) to a professional business website. It can be used to create a stunning online art portfolio or to present work in any way you like (written text, illustrated articles, scrollable images, image galleries, embedded video clips, etc.). Just as you can add an “app” to your phone to add additional functionality, you can add “plugins” to a WordPress website, allowing you to do just about anything (there are over 52,000 WordPress plugins available). As an example, there are free plugins for adding email forms, social share buttons, buy now buttons, shopping carts, email signup boxes, search engine optimization, etc.

To change the appearance of a WordPress website, you click a button to activate a new ‘theme’. Some WordPress themes are simple and minimalist; others are complex. Everything can be customized, depending on your needs. The image below shows how my personal artist website www.amiriagale.com has morphed and changed over the years, starting with a very simple WordPress theme.

Artist Website Design Using WordPress
These screenshots They show how the appearance of my artist website (built using WordPress ) has changed over the years. These images all show the same WordPress website, with different themes and customization options selected.
How hard is it to use WordPress?

Once you’re familiar with WordPress, it has a similar level of difficulty as Microsoft Word. However, as with anything new, the first few days are often frustrating. A beginner hasn’t learned where all the buttons are, so each task requires conscious thinking through the steps. To complicate matters, the registration process uses terminology that is unfamiliar to most people, making it all seem unnecessarily daunting.To help beginners through this process, I’ve created the tutorial below.

Using WordPress is more difficult than sharing something on Facebook or putting together a free drag-and-drop website. But it’s not as difficult as you think. The best way to learn is to dive deep and start. Once you get past the first few weeks, it’s pretty straightforward. In a way, it’s almost a good thing that it seems daunting, as it eliminates many of your potential competitors and gives you an advantage.

How to create an artist website using WordPress
This screenshot shows me editing my artist website using WordPress . You write directly in the central box, selecting italics or bold, etc. (The published page can be seen here.)
How much does WordPress cost?

WordPress itself is free. However, you must purchase the name of the website (the domain name) and a place to store your website files online (this is called “hosting” and is explained in more detail below). WordPress is the software or tool that is used to create the website (just like Microsoft Word is used to write a document). However, for people to see and visit that website, it must be stored securely online somewhere. For example, if you created your website on your own computer, every time you turn off your computer, your website will be offline. To have your website online 24/7 and available for others to visit, but protected from hackers and viruses (this is not an easy task as hackers constantly use automated software to scan the web for loopholes), you need to find a company that specializes in web hosting.

Every website needs hosting. The places that offer free websites pay for the hosting themselves, in exchange for making money in other ways. Facebook, for example, offers you free space to upload photos and chat with friends, while they earn money from advertising. Wix and Weebly offer basic free websites, knowing that many users will get frustrated with the limitations of a free plan (based on all the issues described above) and then buy their premium plans. In other words, you may not pay for hosting initially, but pay for it in other ways.

The best way to create your own website is what is known as a self-hosted WordPress site. This means a website built with WordPress and stored securely online at a professional web host of your choice. This gives you much more flexibility than any of the premium packages offered by Squarespace, Wix, or Weebly, for a much lower price. It also gives you the most security and peace of mind, as you can easily move your website from one hosting provider to another, if necessary – you are not dependent on just one company. The website is owned by you.

See Also:  How to Create a Roku Channel (Even If Youre Not a Developer)

* A note about wordpress.com and wordpress.org

Confusingly, there are two official WordPress sites. WordPress.com allows you to set up a basic free WordPress website – this is not recommended, for the reasons listed above. To fully customize a WordPress website and get all the benefits of having your own website, you should be using the full open source version of WordPress, described on WordPress.org (you don’t actually need to visit WordPress.org, because everything is by your chosen hosting provider, as shown in the step-by-step tutorial below). Signing up to host and install WordPress is very easy and only requires a few clicks.

In summary, to create your own website you need three things:

  • A domain name: This is the name of the website, such as studentartguide.com.
  • Website hosting: This is a rented space on a large server where you store website files so your site can connect to the internet 24/7 (see my recommendations below).
  • A content management system to build the website, such as WordPress, which is free.

Now let’s look at these steps in detail.

What What You Need to Create Your Own Artist Website: A Complete WordPress Guide

Artist website by Amiria G ale

The following is the tutorial I wish I had when I started. It is a complete beginner’s guide for those who have no prior web design experience. It contains step-by-step screenshots, accompanied by clear instructions, showing how to set up a new WordPress website.

Step 1. Brainstorm a catchy website name and easy to remember (your ‘domain’ name)

The first step is to create a domain name for the website, such as www.studentartguide.com. Common formats for a visual arts website include: www.yourname.com, www.yournameartist.com, www.yourphotographername.com, etc.Sometimes website names include keywords related to the particular genre of artwork (such as www.yournameportraits.com), however, you should be careful to select a name that doesn’t limit you unnecessarily.

Tips for choosing a good domain name are as follows:

  • Communicate the intent of your website, without being spammy
  • Aim for a short name and easy to remember
  • Make sure it’s easy to spell, with no unintended meanings when combining words
  • Avoid numbers and hyphens, so it’s easy to say out loud
  • Choose a .com extension or a country-specific extension (such as .co.uk or .co.nz) if you only target a local audience
  • Avoid similarities to existing sites or trademark infringements registered

These tips are communicated in the following infographic.

Good Website Names

DISCLOSURE: The Student Art Guide pr Provides content for free so all students and teachers can access our resources. We earn money through advertising and affiliate links. In this article, we link to hosting providers that we highly recommend – our reputation and success depend on this. Purchasing hosting through these links allows us to continue to provide you with quality resources, free of charge.

Step 2. Purchase the domain name and hosting package from a web hosting provider. such as Bluehost

www.bluehost.com is one of only three officially recommended WordPress hosting providers:

Wordpress Hosting for Artists

The Role of a web hosting company is to provide you with space on their server to store your website so that your site is secure and accessible on the world wide web 24/7. Most hosting companies also sell domain names, giving you the convenience of buying both from the same place.

The web hosting industry is extremely competitive and therefore prices and services often change over time. I previously recommended SiteGround hosting, however SiteGround’s prices have increased dramatically in 2020 (their cheapest plan now renews at $19.99 USD per month) and their access to live chat support has decreased.

<p In contrast, the introductory rate for Bluehost's basic plan is currently discounted to $2.95 per month. Bluehost also offers a free domain for the first year, making them a much more cost-effective option overall, with prices that are within the reach of even many high school students.

NOTE: If you love creating beautiful , artistic things, creating a website is likely to be your most fun project yet. If you get stuck at any point during this tutorial, feel free to email me. My name is Amiria Gale and I am a secondary school teacher from New Zealand. Alternatively, Bluehost has trained support staff available via live chat. Questions help me improve this tutorial and provide valuable feedback, letting me know when something becomes obsolete (technology changes very fast).

Let’s get started!

a) Start by visiting: www.bluehost.com

b) Click the ‘Get Started‘ button to see the different Bluehost hosting plans.

 compare hosting plans

c) Select a hosting plan. The ‘Basic’ and ‘Plus’ plan are suitable for beginners. The main difference between these is that the Plus plan allows you to host an unlimited number of websites, while the Basic plan only allows you to host one. The Plus plan also has more storage space, which can be beneficial for artists. Once you’ve decided which plan you’d like, click ‘Select.’

artist domain name selection

d) On the next screen, type your site name website chosen under ‘create a new domain’ (I’ve used ‘portfolioexample.com’ to illustrate this process). Choose whether you want .com or some other extension, such as .uk. Then click ‘Next‘ to see if the domain name is available. Remember that domain names sell out very quickly, so your first choice is unlikely to be available.

e) Once you have chosen a good domain name, enter your personal details, so you can sign up with Bluehost.

hosting period

f) IMPORTANT: select the hosting period (how long you want to stay). This is important because the discounted price only applies to the period selected and the amount is paid upfront. By adjusting the dropdown next to “Account Plan”, you can see that the discount varies depending on the time period you select. This is common practice in the retail industry. hosting and it’s their way of rewarding customers who stay with them longer.Selecting three years allows you to lock in discounted rates for the longest period.(Bluehost has a 30 day money back policy for hosting, so regardless of which period you select, you can get a refund if you change your mind.) Once you’ve decided which time period you want, scroll down to the next section.

hosting extras

g) This is where Re Bluehost sells the most a variety of different options. Some of these are recommended; others are not needed.

  • ‘Domain Privacy + Protection’ – this is highly recommended. All website owners must have their contact details in a public database called WHOIS. This archaic rule was created when there were very few websites in the world and was an effort to make a sort of phone book with contact details listed. To circumvent this requirement, modern hosting providers now offer “Domain Privacy”, which replaces your personal contact details with the host’s generic contact information and keeps your private details safe. If you have registered with a business address and contact phone number, this may not be necessary; however, for most people, it is highly recommended, otherwise you will be inundated with emails and phone calls from spammers.
  • Codeguard Basic: This is a service that backs up your website, so you don’t have to worry about manually backing up your website. This is quite useful if you can afford it, as it provides peace of mind and means that if something goes wrong with your site, you can easily restore a previous version of the site with the click of a button. However, this is entirely up to you. I didn’t select this when I was just starting out as I wanted to keep things as profitable as possible (and you can easily add it later, if you change your mind).
  • SiteLock Security – Scans your website for malicious code and helps protect against hacking. Although hacking is rare, all websites are vulnerable to it. When creating a new website I keep things as profitable as possible, however if you choose to include this is up to you. Like all the options here, these can be added later if desired.
  • Single Domain SSL – This is an additional digital security certificate that helps authenticate the identity of your website and allows a secure encrypted connection for people entering credit card details, if you plan to build a large shopping website with a shopping cart, etc., where additional security may be desired. Most normal artist websites (selling artwork from their website via Paypal etc) don’t need this as all hosting plans already include a basic SSL certificate for free which is more than adequate for most websites. If you decide to become a large retail store, you can always add this additional security certificate at a later stage, if and when you need it.
  • Yoast SEO premium – this is a WordPress plugin that helps guide you towards ranking your website in search engines, however the free version is great and everything you need so no need.

h) Lastly, enter your contact information and payment details. If you are under 18, please ask your parent’s permission before entering credit card details. Click submit!

create hosting password

i) You will then be prompted to create a password and login details for Bluehost. It often seems like it takes a few minutes to set up the account (last time I tried this it took about ten minutes).

j) While you wait, check your inbox and verify your email address ( this must be done within two weeks, otherwise you will lose ownership of the domain.)

k) After a few minutes, you will receive a ‘Welcome to Bluehost’ email (with confirmation of your payment , etc. ). You are now the proud new domain and hosting owner!

Step 3: Install WordPress on Bluehost

Now you need to install WordPress on Bluehost.This only takes a few minutes and Bluehost walks you through the process as shown below. (As a reminder: Bluehost is where you store your website files; WordPress is the free software you use to build the website.)

a) Login to Bluehost using the login details you just created (click the link in the email or look for the login button at the top right of your screen when visiting Bluehost).

When you log in to Bluehost for the first time, you will see a screen similar to the following:

create a new artist website

b) Click ‘Create your website ‘.

website help

c) Select ‘A Little Help‘.

type of artist website

d) Select the type of website that you are trying to create. Most artist websites are “portfolio/resume” websites, so you may want to choose this option, but it doesn’t matter what you choose here. Bluehost only uses this information to suggest some WordPress themes/styles you might like (as there are thousands of themes to choose from). But you can easily add or change themes later, so don’t worry about what you select here.

full WordPress customization

e) IMPORTANT: Choose the ‘unlimited customization’ WordPress option! ‘! In other words, you want the full version of WordPress, not a stripped down version.

Wordpress Options for Artists

f) Enter the type of website and who the site is for. It doesn’t matter what you enter here. Bluehost just uses this to guess what ‘plugins’ you might find useful on your site, and will pre-install them. (Plugins are like apps for your phone – they add extra functionality to your website.) You can easily add and remove plugins later, so you don’t need to worry about this. Just choose something that is more or less appropriate. For example, if you’re building an artist website, you might want to select options similar to the ones I’ve chosen above, but it doesn’t really matter. 🙂

See Also:  How to connect a wireless router to another wireless router wirelessly
website name and tagline

g) Enter the website name and tagline. The “website name” appears at the top of your website and is often similar (or identical) to your domain name. The tagline is a short statement (like a tagline) that sums up the website. You can easily edit and change them later, so choose anything for now and then click ‘Continue.’

Select WordPress theme

h) Select a WordPress theme and click ‘Use this theme’. There are thousands of free WordPress themes available. Here you’re just selecting the one you want to start with (you can easily switch themes later, so don’t worry about making the “perfect” choice). There are many more WordPress themes than what is shown here; these are just a few that Bluehost thinks you might like, based on what you selected above. I’ll discuss how to change and customize a WordPress theme below, so select any theme for now.

start building an artist website

h) You are now ready to start building your artist website! On the next screen, click ‘Login to WordPress‘ (sometimes this takes a few minutes to work).

This takes you to your WordPress “Dashboard” , which looks something like this:

This is your WordPress Dashboard where you edit your WordPress site and let you add content. It often seems a bit cluttered with alerts from plugins that have been pre-installed, etc. These alerts can be removed by clicking on the little crosses on the right of the screen.

i) Click on your website name (top left of screen) to visit your new website.

new artist website

You now have your own WordPress website! Of course, at this point, it looks very bland and empty, because you haven’t customized or added it any content.🙂

Now you’re ready for the fun to begin!

Step 4: Create your artist website!

At this point, many people want to jump in and start playing around with WordPress. This is an excellent idea and a wonderful way to learn. However, for those who would like a more detailed guide, here are the key points on how best to get started. build your artist website:

Change the look and feel of your artist website by adding and customizing a theme

  • In your WordPress dashboard, go to ‘Appearance ‘ > ‘Themes’.
  • Click ‘Add New’ This will take you to the WordPress theme directory: thousands of free themes, approved for use with WordPress (be very careful! given when searching for WordPress themes elsewhere).
  • Search through themes. It’s easy to get overwhelmed and spend forever doing this. You can switch themes at any time, so don’t worry too much about finding a perfect theme right away. Aim for a simple theme to get started.
  • When you find a theme you like, click ‘Install’ and then ‘Activate’.
  • Once activated, click the customize button (The customize button can be accessed in three places: under the theme when you first install it, as described above; in the dashboard menu, under ‘Appearance’; and in the top black bar, when you view your website). Each WordPress theme has different customization options available; some are very flexible; others are simple.
  • Once you’ve made a few changes, click Save, then visit and update your website. You’ll see that it looks totally different now!
  • Specific tips and advice for customizing the look and feel of an artist website will be added in a separate tutorial soon.

Add a page to your website (i.e. an ‘About Me’ page)

  • In your WordPress dashboard, go to ‘Pages’ and then ‘Add New’.
  • Add a title – let’s call this ‘About Me’ or something similar.
  • Type in the center box to add content to the page. For now, just add sample content (a short review about the website, yourself, or your artwork), so you get an idea of ​​how WordPress works. Don’t worry about making this perfect, you can easily edit it later. To add headings and subheadings, click on the “+” symbol at the top left and choose “heading”, selecting H1, H2, H3, H4 or H5, depending on the size of the headline required. You can also add bullet points, quotes or links to other websites using the link symbol .
  • To add an image, click the ‘+‘ symbol at the top left and scroll down to select ‘image’ or ‘gallery’ (in the media section). You can then upload an image from your computer.
  • When your page is finished, click publish.
  • Click the View Page link and you can see that you now have a new page. live on your website.

Add a ‘post’ to your website

Posts are very similar to pages (they look the same). However, there are two main differences:

  • Posts can be categorized. For example, if you create an artist website, you might have a collection of posts about paintings; another collection on drawings and so on. You can then link to each category in your menu, so clicking takes you to all the illustrations in this category (menus are explained in more detail below).
  • Posts appear in lists . For example, by default, your most recent posts appear in a list on your home page.

Posts are useful for most of the content on your website, as they allow you to organize it easily. Pages, on the other hand, cannot be categorized and do not appear in lists. Pages are best for stand-alone content, such as an About page or Contact page. Don’t worry too much if this all sounds confusing; it will become clearer as you use WordPress.

For now, practice creating a new post by doing the following:

  • First, go to ‘Posts’ > ‘All Posts’ (in the WordPress dashboard).
  • By default, WordPress comes with a sample post already created. Click “Trash” to delete the sample post. You need to move your mouse near the title to bring up the delete option.
  • Now to create a new post, click ‘Add New’.
  • Add a title and a show content to this post. As before, add an image if you like and click insert into post.
  • Select a category for the post (on the right side of the screen, bottom-middle). Click ‘Add New Category’. Create a name for the category. I have used ‘Paintings’ as an example. Parent categories are useful if you want to have categories that are subcategories of other categories. For example, you might have a main category of “Paintings” and then subcategories called “Acrylic Paintings”, “Oil Paintings”, etc. Then click ‘Add New Category’ (the bottom button).Categories allow you to group and organize content, helping your visitors navigate your artist’s website and find related material.
  • The tag feature (optional) allows you to add keywords, like a hashtag. on Instagram or Facebook.
  • Set a featured image (recommended) from the bottom right corner of the screen. The featured image is usually displayed as a large image at the top of the post, or as a thumbnail image when displayed in a list.
  • When you’re done, click ‘post’.
  • Click ‘View Post’ to see the new blog post, with the featured image at the top of the screen.
  • Finally, if you visit the home page, you can see that the new post now appears there.

Add a Menu to Your Artist Website

Menus allow people to navigate from page to page on your website. Let’s start by creating a menu at the top of the page.

  • Go to ‘Appearance’ > ‘Menus’ (in the WordPress dashboard).
  • Click on ‘Create menu’. ‘
  • Add items to the menu. Check the items on the left and click the ‘Add to Menu’ button. For example, you can add pages, posts, and categories that you’ve created.
  • Reorder the menu items accordingly. I have indented the ‘Seascape Paintings’ post under the ‘Paintings’ category. This means it will appear as a dropdown item in the menu under Paints.
  • Rename the menu items as appropriate. By clicking the menu item, you can rename it to a shorter, abbreviated title.
  • Select the display location. Some themes allow you to display the menu in more than one place (for example, in the footer or in the sidebar). Select ‘Top Main Menu’.
  • Click ‘Save Menu’. If you visit and update your website, you’ll see that you now have a menu at the top of the screen.

Add plugins to your artist website

Plugins They are like ‘apps’ for phones: they add additional functionality to your website. There are over 50,000 free plugins available, adding contact forms, social media buttons, buy now buttons, etc. The more plugins you add, the more complicated your website becomes, making it slower to run. I recommend not having more than 20 plugins per site.

  • Go to ‘Plugins’ > ‘Installed Plugins’ (in the WordPress dashboard).
  • Remove existing plugins ( these are installed by default.)
  • Click ‘Add New’. This will take you to the free WordPress plugin directory.
  • Please note the plugin rating. Before installing a plugin, you should check its rating. A good plugin is usually installed many times, is recently updated, and is compatible with the current version of WordPress.
  • When you find a plugin you like, click ‘Install Now’ and then ‘Activate’ .
  • Then, you will return to the list of installed plugins. Under the name of the plugin you installed, it says “Settings”. By clicking here, you can edit the settings for that plugin.

Add or remove “widgets” from the sidebar.

A widget is a small element that appears in the sidebar or footer of your WordPress website. All that is currently on the sidebar of your website is a widget.

  • Go to ‘Appearance’ > ‘Widgets’ (in the WordPress dashboard). On the left side of the screen is a list of all the widgets that are available. On the right side of the screen are areas where widgets can be placed.
  • By default, the sidebar comes with several widgets placed on it: a search box, a list of recent posts and soon. Remove widgets you don’t want to appear. To remove them, drag any widget out of the sidebar area. Alternatively, click the down arrow next to them (as shown above) and click ‘delete’.

Final Words

For those who wish to more help, I’m in the process of creating additional detailed tutorials to walk people through the process of building an artist-specific WordPress website, as well as how to measure and increase traffic to your website, keeping in mind counts creative artists and entrepreneurs.

If you’ve been finding it confusing to set up WordPress, don’t worry! As with anything new, it takes time to get familiar with the location of the shortcuts and buttons in the WordPress dashboard. The key is to start: WordPress is learned faster using it. And once WordPress becomes second nature to you, the rewards are huge! Right now, I’m managing websites for a living (and I’m taking a break from teaching), which is particularly awesome in this current climate!

If there’s anything in this video you need with help please don’t. Feel free to email me. I update this tutorial regularly, and feedback is very valuable and appreciated.

Thank you! Get started and visit Bluehost to get started!

.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *