Quite a while ago, we put together our first survey on TechsmARTs, in part, to find out what technological topics of interest we should try to cover for future sessions. One clear result of that survey: Many respondents wanted to know more about putting together a website. Is it even possible to put one together quickly, and at a low cost?
We realized this was not a topic that could adequately be covered in the course of a standard, hour-and-a-half-long TechsmARTs gathering. And while there are a fair number of tools available to accomplish the goal of quickly building a website at a very low cost, we have the most experience in using WordPress. Once you learn the basics of WordPress, it is not only much easier to put together a decent website in a very short period of time, but it’s also a great platform for building a website that will serve your long-term needs.
With all that in mind, we put together our first Website Bootcamp in mid-June. The Foundation Center was gracious enough to host the class. ClickHOST offered a hosting sponsorship. Binders came in with a sponsorship that helped us cover some of the costs of developing the content. In this initial offering of our two-day seminar, we covered a lot of material and gave everyone time to work on their own sites with the benefit of having one another and some volunteers to help out.
I’d like to take a few moments to highlight some of the websites that were built at the Bootcamp. All of these artists built their websites by the end of the Bootcamp:
This website is the result of the amazing work of Seana Reilly, who compiles a list of art shows happening throughout Atlanta.
Paige needed a portfolio website to help her document and showcase her career as a performing artist. She found and installed the Mantra theme and got right to work from on the content.
Katherine Santana is a visual artist who also needed to develop an online portfolio of her artwork. She was also able to quickly find a theme that suited her. But then, she also wanted to make a few cosmetic enhancements. After getting some direction, she decided to move forward in learning CSS and figure out how to apply her changes in the theme.
Our next Website Bootcamp will be in September. We’re taking time between now and then to take the lessons we learned from our first offering of the class and update the content. For this upcoming session, Binders has graciously offered their space. I’m looking forward to offering the Bootcamp again and seeing what new websites will come out of it!