The Riesco Art Studio - www.riescoart.com
Art is about so much more than just the painting. It is an expression, an attempt to make the audience feel something, a manipulation of the soul. Attending a show at the Riesco Art Studio is an experience not soon to be forgotten. How could we let Jonathan Riesco's Web site be any less of an experience?
So we needed a dynamite entrance to attract the audiences attention, and we found it on the floor of Jonathan's studio. There is a wheel painted on the floor, painted to resemble slices of marble. The wheel is not the focus of any show, but you can't help but notice it. So to get attention, we created a flash where that wheel spins and EXPLODES into the whole introduction for the site. It only takes a couple of seconds on the first page, but it really captures that feeling of entering the show for the first time!
Providing the details of Jonathan Riesco's experience and the studio location was very straightforward. What wasn't was presenting the artwork itself and photographs of the shows. Out of all of the options in front of us we used a free piece of software called JAlbum, from http://www.jalbum.org. This is an interesting piece of software, different from many albums because the album on the site is static and all the work takes place during the generation of the pages. The images are resized before they become part of the Web site, and more importantly the visitor doesn't need any special viewers or facilities to look at the album. Because JAlbum uses HTML templates to define how the album will look, we could create a template that matched the theme Jonathan wanted to present.
Because Jonathan himself is an artist, we wanted him to have a large measure of direct control over the site. The wheel exploding into the entrance is in Flash, which can be technically challenging. But the image, while controlled by the flash, is loaded from a JPEG file on the site. Jonathan can change the JPEG at will and control that aspect of the user experience. It is even be possible to script this to create different random entrances. And using JAlbum, Jonathan has complete control over the artwork and show pictures which are presented. He can even set up text for each image explaining it in more detail.
All of this definitely gives this site the bang that Jonathan Riesco wanted and certainly differentiates his Web site from many other artists'!
1 The United States Census Bureau 2004 estimated population statistics.