Thursday, September 29, 2011

It's done. For now.

After considerable flatulating about yesterday with Photoshop Elements and three years' worth of forest and bird photographs, I came up with this banner for my books web site.

The previous portrait of a red-tailed hawk stayed. I tried various other birds of prey, including a great horned owl and even a turkey vulture, but nothing suggested the nobly hawkish gaze of a Lakota lawman as well as that red-tail.

Many other web sites feature a large portrait of the mystery writer on the banner. This is fine so long as the writer is impossibly handsome or an out-and-out knockout, but not if he or she is grizzled, bald, jowly, and dumpy. That hawk is far more photogenic than I am.

Briefly a gun and badge appeared on the banner, but the result just looked too cluttered.

Solution: Simplify, simplify, simplify. That hawk, a forest background to suggest Sheriff Steve Martinez's wilderness jurisdiction, and the words "THE MYSTERY NOVELS OF . . ." rather than "THE BOOKS OF . . ." to sharpen the marketing focus.

I tried a number of fonts for the text, but kept coming back to Charlemagne. Love those bold serifs.

More changes may be afoot, but this banner will do for now.

I also changed the sub-banners on the linked pages from a sunset to a forest-and-hawk. This added a bit of unity to the site.

And that's my story. What's yours?

1 comment:

  1. If you're going to tweak -- and I know you are, Henry -- try making the text a little smaller, maybe 6 points. Otherwise it looks good.
    Jack M.