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Friday, 27 March 2009


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YESSS, finally, I really had "an issue" with typing http://theonlinephographer.com and then going to static "main" page, and the clicking on the blog link and then...

Keep up the great work Mike and I wish you plenty more subscribers!

Sincerely yours

Yay! I've been hoping you'd make this change for ages! Thanks!

All of which sounds good, except the main page
now does not seem to have a link to the actual blog, as far as I can tell...

Sure, one can always go to one of the "recent posts", then click "Main", but something a bit more direct may be helpful...

You know Mike, I don't think a hell of a lot of us who read you every day are particularly concerned about what the header bar looks like.

There are certain web sites which succeed solely because of the richness of their content. This is one of them, as are a few others I read every day.

Fight the temptation to look for solutions to problems that don't exist, and keep up the good work.


If I click your Header, I get the main page. On that page, as far as I can tell, there is no link to the Blog page. (It still says to click the weblog link, but I don't see the link anymore.)

Just FYI.

Me, I would ditch the yellow side bars for a nice light gray.

The main page is actually:


That's the URL I had posted on the Welcome page forever, and that URL should still work as a bookmark. If that's not the one you are using, you can switch to that. Also, you could use http://theonlinephotographer.com or http://www.theonlinephotographer.com, although these might not be working everywhere quite yet. Any of those three should lead directly to the blog page once the new redirects propagate throughout the web.


OK -- I don't know why, but when I click on the soon-to-be-redone logo/header, I land on the URL I quoted, not on the blog page/main page.

My bookmark is the RSS feed, why I access through Safari. From the RSS feed page, when I click on either the header or the "Source" link, I also end up on

Maybe there is something I have not configured right, but I see Ken Bennett above has the same issue.

"OK -- I don't know why, but when I click on the soon-to-be-redone logo/header, I land on the URL I quoted, not on the blog page/main page."

Yes, and unfortunately I can't change that. I'm going to revise that page to suit (I'll probably get to that tomorrow), but if I change the destination of the header-click, it will break ALL the links and bookmarks and links to image files--basically it would wreak havoc with the entire blog.

Nothing's perfect, I guess.


I don't have an issue with the header or the page color. I agree with Kurt in the post above.
Something about that typeface makes me feel all Smokey the Bear and comfy. Sincere and accessible. Like I'm going to sit down in the Yellowstone Lodge in front of a big fire and read a something filled with good information.

Some of my favourite posts have been the "Random Excellence" ones. Can you have category for them too?

Just a thought...

1) Figure out an appropriate amount to pay for such a service.
2) Put it up to the readers to come up with a new header design (I would guess that some of the readers must have graphic design skills).
3) Post the top 3-4 submissions so the regular readers can vote on their preference.
4) Make your decision on which to choose (keeping in mind reader preference or not).
5) Pay the person whose design is selected and use it as the header for the site.

If your not happy with any submission, don't use them and get a graphic designer via some other means.

This blog is a great resource that works fine for me just the way it is. But I know what it's like when you get "the tweaks."

Things I see: 230 XHTML validation errors; at least one CSS color error; one JavaScript warning on page load. I guess it's working fine, but there is a lot of cleaning up that could go into it. (Two major validation errors that should be easy to clean up: (1) missing alt tags on images; just use alt="" (2) using the same id on both the div and the nested span for each comment; just change the id on the span to end in any word other than 'content'.)
The bad CSS color is 'F7F0D7' with no #.
The JavaScript warning is assignment to atpContents without declaring it.

Certainly, "if it ain't broke ..." -- but if you are going to fix it, I'd think it would be easier to do without a bunch of irrelevant errors cluttering things up.

Thanks again for a great site!

And I'm trying to hire a real graphic designer to re-do the header bar. Not much movement there yet. (Too small a job?) Stay tuned.

not too small at all. some designers, like jim parkinson, specialize in that sort of thing.

I'll really appreciate the categories when you've managed to add them to most of the posts, Mike. I've often wanted to find a post from more than a couple of months ago but have been unable to locate it even with a Google search. For example, I really wanted to go back to the post where you took photos by famous photographers (Henri C-B was one) and added spoof critiques in the manner of online forum addicts. I still haven't managed to find it. A proper index, or even an annotated list of post titles would be wonderful, but categories will certainly help. However, some of those categories will have very many posts, so I'll still end up having to scan many pages of posts (unless you just list the titles of the posts rather than each in its entirety, comments and all).
(Hope I haven't misunderstood how this will work, but please take it as a compliment that I do refer to older posts as well as enjoying what's new.)

That was called "Great Photographers on the Internet," and it's still my most popular post all-time--I think something on the order of 400,000 people must have seen it by now. Here's the link:


(I really should resuscitate the "SA" satire alert, shouldn't I?)

Unfortunately it looks like when you use categories, the entire posts come up as the result. I would prefer that just titles would come up, but that doesn't seem to be an option. I'll try to ask my TypePad contact about it.

I didn't understand a word you just wrote....



Chris probably ran some XHTML conformance checker. OTOH, I bet most of the code is done by typepad so most of the bugs is probably typepad template bug.

My wife did the logo and overall layout design for my new site. Specifically, she use a background reminiscent of a Chinese scroll. It's working so well that we are going to try to mount some of my photos using similar scheme.

Hi Mike
Graphic design is like photography, give a man a PC and he thinks he is one.
I agree with what has been said about the content being the important thing and I am sure like me many people miss your thoughts at UK Black & White magazine.
We live in a visual world these days and sometimes a change is good like spring cleaning. I am trained as and work as a graphic designer as well as taking a few photographs and would be happy to re pay the many hours of great reading overs the years by doing a couple of layouts for free.


I'm not sure if you ever bother to look at the work by flickr members Mike, but this particular member, IMO makes wonderful images.
It amazes me that so many talented photographers go unnoticed.

Banner Graphic? Throw it open to the readers as a contest? Some sort of prize for the winner - how about NOT having to donate for subscription? Hey - look at that, the potential winner already has their prize now they just need to design the banner graphic and we're all square! =)

mike, the header bar is perfect the way it is. if anything it just needs to be centered.

ken r.

Hi Mike
I don't know if my previous post got through or was rejected but I said I had enjoyed your site and also your contributions to UK Black and white Photography.
I am trained and work as a graphic designer. and will be happy to supply some ideas gratis in thanks for many hours I have spent over the last few years reading you and your friends postings.



As an "old" fan of your blog, I must say you've always done an amazing job providing good content.
I agree with Chris, the site has a good few errors. I've been working with web and graphic design since 99 and I would be happy to help you with anything you need. Consider it a gift in return for all the nice articles you've provided!
Some of my sites:


I was about to suggest something similar to what Jeff Hartge posted. You could offer a print or a book to the winner, rather than payment.


While you're tweaking, maybe a side box for the most commented on posts? And another for recent comments, so we don't miss comments on older posts?

And, A "TOP 10" for "most important posts", like John Camp's "A life in art" post from last week?


Love the lynx!

I would gladly help you with your banner and also other stuff on your website if you wish. I really enjoy your stuff and this could be my way of "paying back". If you're interested and want to see some of my previous web / graphic design work, just send me an e-mail.

No, I don't want to make the banner graphic into a contest, because I don't want people to spend time working on it when their work might not be used. It's not important enough to waste peoples' time.

But thanks for the thought.


Mario, David, and Jukka,
You're extremely kind to make the offer of help with graphic design for my TOP site--I'm happy to say that I've received many such offers previous to yours. I think I will go with one of the firms that first contacted me, but thanks for your offer of help--very much appreciated.


Mike, thanks for the link to the 'Great photographers on the internet' post. It's truncated in the post but still easy to find. Much appreciated.

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