2020: A New Blog And Portfolio Page

It's 2am and I'm still wide-awake.

Just got back to Los Angeles after a short trip to Hong Kong and I didn't seem to be able to adjust to the jet lag.

I've been wanting to update my homepage for a long time to make it simple and clean.

Even though I am quite a mess, I am a minimalist at heart, at least that's my aspiration. And I still dream to live in a van someday…

Originally I planned to use the WordPress Theme used by Zenhabits but it's just so simple that displaying photos weren't too suitable.

I finally decided to purchase the “Tru” theme used by the Minimalist blog after rewatching this documentary in Netflix. Highly recommended.

It's simple, and I like it.

As for the Portfolio part, I have done a lot of research over the years.

But the truth is, I don't think anyone would spend more than a few minutes to look at my portfolio except myself.

Nowadays people only use Instagram or Facebook to view photos. And they only spend one second to look at the photo you posted, if you are lucky…

So it's more for my own enjoyment.

I wanted something that shows high resolution image with good automatic scaling so that it looks good both on a big screen or with a phone.

But that's not quite possible because horizontal photos always look better on a big screen but vertical photos look better on the phone. Oh well…

Many companies offer platforms where you can just upload your photos and they have templates to display your photos.

I found that many of them compress your photos so that the page loading time would be shorter.

For example, if you upload an image with 1920 pixels on the long side, these companies automatically scale down your photos to like 1000 pixels, so the final display of the photo shows the artifacts due to aggressive compression.

For a long while I just used some gallery plugins in WordPress but they took forever to load.

Finally I narrowed it down to 3 companies: Livebooks, Squarespace and Smugmug.

I've been a customer of Smugmug for ten years, but after an absolutely terrible customer service incident with them, which cost me a lot of sleepless nights, money and trouble, I cancelled my membership with them and would never do business with them again.

I really liked the photo displays with Squarespace by some of my photographer friends, but I finally chose Livebooks because the auto scaling for photo display is perfect to my taste.

So now I have a “hybrid” website. For my portfolios, I use Livebooks. And for my blog, I use the Tru theme in WordPress.

It's just a start. I am happy because it's exactly how I like. I will post more photos and blogs soon.

Hope you enjoy!

Here's one of the photos I posted at the B&W session, a photo I recently sold for over $1,000 to a buyer few days ago.

I remember the day when I received an email from someone telling me that he was glad he finally tracked me down.

He first saw this photo online but didn't know who the photographer was, so he called up some galleries in Jackson and eventually he found out that I took this photo. I got to thank the kind soul who told him that. And I am truly thankful we connected through the eyes of the bison.

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