Personal Project – JAdams (2!)

I’ve been slowly working on the portfolio page of my friend’s website. It’s an especially important page in this case because of the work that she does- as an aspiring animator it’s going to be really important that her work is showcased in a way that enhances it, without being too show-y. In other words: it should just work.

I’ve shied away from using plugins and frameworks before, just because my projects weren’t really big enough to need one. Frameworks like Bootstrap are popular- I even leaned a bit about that one in particular as part of a codecademy course. But those are much better suited to helping you build a full project- not say, making a drop-down menu. Eventually, I’d like to try out a number of different frameworks and see if certain ones are better suited to a particular type of project, of if it’s just a matter of personal preference. For now though, I thought it was important for me to learn about and write as much of the code as possible.

I decided to really look at how other developers were making galleries. A lot [and I mean a lot!] of them were using a plugin called Lightbox to give their image galleries functionality, so I decided to take a closer look and see if it was something that would work for my project.

It turned out that Lightbox was a pretty good fit for my project: it offered a nice, clean look, and offered functionality which would have probably taken me days to be able to include if I’d tried to do it myself [full-time days- not just my part-time ones!] Initially I was feeling a bit overwhelmed at the prospect of making a functioning portfolio page- the idea I had in my head is pretty close to what was produced using Lightbox, so there would have been a lot of javascript involved, and it would have really stretched me.

The one downside for me is that Lightbox doesn’t support video, so I’m still thinking about how I want to showcase the short animated clips. The default [in the Chrome browser, at least!] is to open the video centred on a black background, but I really like the look of the grey overlay acheived with Lightbox, so this is something I’d eventually like to do with the videos as well. For now, the animations section of the portfolio page is a bit of a work in progress.

You can click here to see a preview of the portfolio page as it stands now.

Or click here to see the repo on github!

I have been learning a lot about video and image formats lately, including my first time using the html5 video tag, and converting file types!

I’d be grateful if anyone had any tips or advice about video galleries!

I also got some amazing news in my personal life [which I won’t go into much detail about here,] that means I’ll have more free time to work on learning web development 😀

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