Alex Webb is a well known photojournalist who started to work for Magnum Photos in 1976. His photography is very distinctive. His unique style of using colors and shadows makes him a master of color photography. Alex Webb and Rebecca Norris Webb are husband and wife. Both of them are photographers and they also share the same portfolio website. I like the idea of a married photographers to share the same website, if they have similar style or if they work together.
However, this is not really the case. The homepage space is equally distributed, same number of pages: Projects, Books, Archives, About, Assignments, but you can see only by moving the mouse – that Webb’s work is more consistent and you almost have the feeling that Rebecca’s work was incorporated in the website. Going more in depth with the critique, there are more cons than pros for their website design.
1. Simplicity of the Homepage
2. The combination of colors: grey-black-yellow
3. The slideshow plugin -you have many options to browse through the pictures:
- scrolling the sidebar- filmstrip;
- playing the slideshow- possibility to set the timing;
- using the arrows- back-next;
4. The size of the photographs in the slideshow -they are big enough -which tells the viewer that the picture is the most important element
5. Even if this is the website of two photographers I like the fact that their individual pages are build the same. I like the idea of mirroring one each other.
I don’t like:
1. The waste of space – on homepage -you have a lot of unused space between the navigation list and the two pictures. They can make the pictures bigger or they can put the navigation menu – on the top of the page.
2. The pictures from homepage -are not click-able- personally- I would link the pictures to another page – to a portfolio page.
3. The navigation system has an error. You can not go back to the previous page using the back button. There is only a small button -not so visible because of the color and font which is called the Main Menu button and sends the user back to the homepage. It took me some time until I noticed the button .
4. I don’t really see the purpose of having three pages with: Archives, Prints and Assignments only with links and contact information for the different places in the world but no images. I feel like is too much text for a photography website. I would like to see more text – related with the photos. They don’t really have captions for the pictures or consistent info about their personal projects.
5. You cannot see the cursor when you are clicking on the scroll bar -probably because of the color: black on black.
6. The categories are listed in a different style: Alex’s is top to bottom while Rebecca’s bottom to top. For Rebeccas’ work it makes it only more difficult to go through for work. You have to make the mouse leap – and if you are not careful you will open the book’s page.
7. The information about the workshop that they organize together is not visible. The Workshop tab is positioned in the bottom right of the page. The color font doesn’t really help the viewer to see it. I would put that in the top of the page or make more visible, choosing other font color or size.
I think that this website is more about Alex’s work than about Rebecca’s work. I also think that Alex Webb is trying to promote his wife’s work by using his name, which is understandable. As an Alex Webb fan I feel disappointed by his website. It is not user friendly. The navigation system is complicated. I would like to see caption information and also few words about their independent projects. I would change the order of the pages and I would start with ABOUT – especially in this case when we have two photographers sharing the same site.
Overall, I think that a lot of things can be improved with this site, small things that would make everything easier for the user.