Updated: May 16
It has been needed for a long, long time. Years, even.
This is going to be a bit of a rant- apologies in advance. But let’s start with a very important point:
Squarespace is garbage.
Garbage that keeps growing more rancid with each passing year. Each “interface update.” Every “efficiency” they introduce that breaks previous styles. Their never-ending push to “streamline” their website creation program has made it entirely unusable for anyone who wants even the slightest modicum of flexibility. Back when I first put my site together they provided me with a TON of it. Sure things weren’t perfect, but you could ad
just how galleries worked within a template, turn on and off universally accessible features (like light-boxing) and a host of other customizable options.
However when I attempted to update my site years later they had re-done their entire website editor and removed SO MANY of those options. Choosing a starting template - which you were forced to do - would seal off certain preferences and force you into VERY specific layouts. And those layouts were often not correct for some of my series. Because of this I left my website alone. Nothing I could create from their increasingly limited and generic New Templates could provide me with anything better.
I would go back periodically and attempt to re-design it over the subsequent years but the trend was consistent: the options would get MORE limited and LESS user-friendly. Their desire for “innovation” had completely ruined their platform. In my opinion, of course.
And then COVID hit. And I was suddenly without any freelance work, all my art shows were cancelled and I lacked all motivation to create new paintings. To fill the sudden abundance of free time I did many things: had countless anxiety attacks brought on by my hypochondria going into over-drive during a pandemic, exercise, baking, vigorous and prolific self-love, and finally looking into alternative platforms to FINALLY update a site I fell out of love with AGES ago. My old site was “fine” but it was also dated and didn’t properly elevate or showcase my work. It had been almost embarrassing to direct people to and I haven’t uploaded any newer works to it in years.
This is when I happened across WIX. And while it is also a very imperfect, problematic (and often buggy) website creator it was also a THOUSAND times more flexible and usable than Squarespace had become. I actually found myself having fun and getting excited by what I could do. Each page could have multiple types of galleries to better suit the work. My Shinrin Kami page, for example, needed a gallery type that would properly showcase my larger works - but I also had Mini-Kami paintings I had done a while ago (before my Micro Painting Series) that wouldn’t have really fit into the space with the more detailed, fuller works. WIX solved this issue by allowing me to make a separate gallery on the SAME PAGE that worked better for those tiny pieces.
Then I hit roadblocks. I got back into my art. I got freelan
ce work again. And the kinks/imperfections/bugs I hadn’t worked out yet became too much for me to handle without additional know-how.
So my New Site sat languishing for another couple years in the editor, unfinished. That is until a few weeks ago when I happened to meet a truly talented and wonderful guy by the name of Samson Smith (www.samsonsmith.net). Over the course of our introduction he revealed that he’s helped other artists get their websites created and I immediately jumped at the opportunity. Here was someone with far more experience with these finicky programs who could realize my initial blueprints and hammer out all the issues/redundancies/etc.
So here we are! FINALLY. A new site. A new platform to showcase my work in a more modern way that truly allows my vision to breathe. I hope you all like it and I look forward to this becoming a more actively-updated platform.
Thank you again to Samson for getting me across the finish line on this (and Haley Varacallo for some of the lovely photography - www.haleyvaracallo.com). It was a decade+ overdue.
And fuck SquareSpace. That sinking ship can rot.