What do you think about our new Banners?

We have been working with a talented designer from Uzbekistan (which is where Lola and I are originally from) to revamp the look of our site. After our transition from “Mansurovs” to “Photography Life”, we have been thinking about ways to make the site more user-friendly. Our first step was to redesign our logo. The second step was to get rid of that old huge banner with my personal pictures and a square version of the logo. So Lola came up with a few ideas for the new banner concept and she has been working with the designer during the last couple of weeks. After I saw the initial results, I loved them and immediately got rid of the old banners (those really had to go). As of now, the 5 new banners rotate randomly on the top of the page and the designer will be making more interesting ones each month.

So here they are for your viewing pleasure:
Banner-1.jpg

Banner-7.jpg

Banner-6.jpg

Banner-5.jpg

Banner-4.jpg

Banner-3.jpg

Banner-2.jpg

What do you guys think? We need more ideas for future banners, so if you come up with something fun, please let us know and we will work on it. The next step will be to redesign the site.


Avatar of Nasim Mansurov About Nasim Mansurov

is a professional photographer based out of Denver, Colorado. He is the author and founder of Photography Life, along with a number of other online resources. Read more about Nasim here.

Comments

  1. 1
    ) Pablo

    ‘Greedy Life’ and a lot of lenses lol.

    • Hahahah :D That’s awesome! Love the idea – perhaps need to use a more positive word than “Greedy”? :)

      • 6
        ) Austin

        What about “Gear Life” with not only lenses but computers and everything else

      • Uhm… If we are talking about a bunch of lenses, Confusing Life, perhaps? lol

      • 35
        ) Kadidal

        Gear Acquisition Life?

  2. 3
    ) FrancoisR

    A tasty fashion to look wildly at photography life and not taking it too lightly?
    lol

  3. 4
    ) Ernesto

    Very pleasing, talented artist. It’s rather a good idea.

  4. 5
    ) nora connell

    how about night life with star shots etc?

    • Cool idea, thank you! Perhaps some stars, a tripod and a photographer :)

  5. 7
    ) Sue Bett

    I may be the first but I’m not really a fan of the new banners. It’s called “photography Life” but these are drawings that could be done on Adobe Illustrator. Yet the website is “photography” so I don’t personally “get” the new banners. I loved the photographs that used to be shown there.

    • Sue, thank you for your valuable feedback. The issue with showcasing photographs, is that I am not the only contributor to the site. Also, most photos don’t look good when stretched like the above banners, so I had to use a huge logo and make the banner very tall, which looked bad on mobile devices and smaller screens… That’s why we thought about creating those banners, rather than using photographs.

      • 22
        ) Bob Gobeille

        I’m with Sue and Jim. They are great graphics and I like what you are trying to do with a theme, but I would rather see photos. Romanas, I do consider myself open minded. So I’d rather think of a photo solution that solves the aspect ratio problem. For example, don’t use one photo in a line, use a few photos in a crazy type of scrapbook orientation.

        Sorry, for the dissent. I think you all are wonderful and I hope you just pick what makes you happy. I’ll get over it. ;-)

        • Bob, thanks for the feedback. We might look into mixing these with photos. Will test it out tomorrow and see how it works out :)

          • 69
            ) lily

            this is my first comment here since following you for a year (when i got my first dlsr!) so thank you for alll the posts!!! (especially the light room ones:))

            For the banner, i agree with sue and bob. the graphics are really cute but i can’t relate it with photography life, and prefer bob’s idea… perhaps several photos (could rotate with photos from other teammates?)

            • 82
              ) Steve Zettel

              First, my compliments to you and your staff for the time, effort and put in to making your website more useful and user-friendly for all your readers. Your enthusiasm and devotion are very evident and your website is my go-to photography resource, bar none.

              It’s also evident that your designer is very talented and has great skill in putting together a cohesive theme and style for your banners. That said, here comes the “but” — your site is about all things photography, not graphics arts, and I feel the proposed banners just don’t capture anything that tells me the site is about photography. I much prefer the idea of using actual photographs from your staff to illustrate the various theme sections. I think skillfully cropped the aspect ratio of a banner can be accommodated, and actual photos of food, lenses and gear, landscape, weddings etc would be more in the spirit of your site.

              That said, even if you decided tomorrow to go all text I would still keep coming back to your website. Thanks for all you do for the enthusiast community!

              Steve Z

        • 91
          ) Sue Bett

          That’s a great possibility–to use more than one photo for the space. But as many have said, whatever you choose will be fine with me! I love the content and tutorials you have on the site and I’ve had it set up as my home page for the internet for quite some time. That way everything is right there, handy, when I need some information. Keep up the great work!

  6. 8
    ) David B

    these are all great – love them! great job

  7. 9
    ) Jim C

    I don’t get it! Is this a photography site?

    • Jim, let’s open up our minds a little. This is a photography website, yes, and the banners are also about photography. They don’t necessarily have to be actual photographs to represent us well, do they? :) After all, we sort of do have hundreds of photography related articles and images to support them.

      But then, I really like the new banners and the general idea, so forgive me if I am being overly critical of a different opinion than mine!

  8. 13
    ) CJ

    I personally liked the other ones! I love looking at the photos you have posted. They are just so vibrant and inspirational to me. I know that I can still go to different places in the site to look at them, but I loved your photos flashing across my iPad when I would go to your site!

    • CJ, perhaps we will someday just have a gallery page dedicated to photographs and nothing else where readers will be able to just go and see what we’ve been up to lately. I think it would do us good, too – we mustn’t forget we are photographers first, writers second. Otherwise our opinion would suddenly lose most of its weight :)

  9. 20
    ) Tom Crossan

    Hi

    Sometimes it is best not to ask, as you can please some of the people all the time, all of the people some of the time, and please no one all of the time.

    Me – I like them.

    • Thank you for your feedback Tom. True, but we still like to ask, especially for some great new ideas!

  10. 23
    ) Dan Thornberry

    I really like the new banners. How about “Full of Life” as a theme?

    • Thank you Dan. What would you like to see on such a banner? Please let me know and I will send the idea to our designer.

      • 93
        ) Dan Thornberry

        I was thinking of maybe an older couple dancing with a lot of spirit while being photographed by a young and amazed photographer.

  11. 24
    ) Alice Wrobley

    Just my take:
    Instead of Heavy, I would prefer Outdoor Life
    Instead of Fashion, I would prefer Portrait Life
    Instead of Wildlife, maybe Nature Life
    Instead of Tasty, maybe Luscious Life
    Instead of Happy, maybe Family Life

    The word “heavy” one is the one I question most; “fashion” second.

    • 26
      ) Bob Gobeille

      Nice. +1

    • 31
      ) Don

      I agree with you on the changing of the words. I also think that the pictures look kind of juvenile.

      • Thank you for your feedback Don! We will think of some other ideas as well.

    • Thank you Alice! I liked heavy, because the guy was lugging heavy gear just to take that picture :) But I agree, I think Outdoor Life would sound better. I will send the request changes to our designer.

  12. 25
    ) Randall Stiltner

    I dont love them but I dont hate them. I find them confusing and would also prefer real photos in the banners. There are many clever panaramas that would fit. Again it depends where you go with it as the idea is just taking off but for me I feel like I am looking at the beginnings of some photography comic strip yet to be developed. That would be pretty cool way to go with it. The artist definately has the talent. Its not like there isn’t many funny photography moments to illustrate! :-D

    • Thank you for your feedback Randall. Yes, we want to have some funny ones there soon :) We have some ideas in mind, so we are hoping that the designer will implement them.

  13. 27
    ) Winston Cooper

    I really like your new banners. They seem very current and in the vernacular of my far away youth..Hip..I really like this site for it’s pure photographic info, don’t always agree with you as I think LR is a poor runner up to Elements, but your other in depth observations on photo gear is superb. Case in point, I have been struggling to go ahead and pop for the 24-70 f2.8 Nikkor for my D800 and your excellent lens reviews may be pushing me over the edge. However the main point of this comment is “Uzbekistan”….That was a surprise..My good friends, in some post in the future, please enlighten ignorant folks like me where that is and how it inspired such wonderful artiest and insightful tech folks like y’all to create this post. Right after I post this I am headed to Google to search Uzbekistan..Gad this old soul loves to learn….!!!!!

    • Thank you for your feedback Winston! We will work on improving, since we are always in the process of learning ourselves :) If I were you, I would wait on the 24-70mm f/2.8 for the D800. It is an excellent lens, but if it is not something you need right now, there might be an update coming out next year. Since Canon refreshed their 24-70mm with a much better version, I am expecting Nikon to do the same soon. If you do not need the build of the 24-70mm, take a close look at the 24-120mm f/4 – it is an excellent lens.

      As for Uzbekistan, yes, that’s where Lola and I are from. I have been living in Colorado for the last 15 years, so when someone asks me where Uzbekistan is, I always say – if you dig a hole right here in Colorado, you will come out of Uzbekistan. It is seriously on the other side of our planet! Uzbekistan is a part of the former Soviet Union (one of the 15 republics that became independent after the Soviet Union collapsed in 1989) and it is one of the only two double landlocked countries in the world. The population is about 30 million now, so it is not a small country. I was actually born in Tajikistan, but I grew up in Uzbekistan and lived there for about 20 years. So when you see grammar errors in our articles, it is because English is not even my second language. Both Lola and I speak four languages, Uzbek language being our mother tongue and Russian being our second language. I have not spoken Turkish for many years, so I am beginning to forget it now, but I also studied at a Turkish High School and used to speak it fluently.

      Uzbekistan is a great country, minus its corrupt post-soviet government (true for pretty much all soviet republics). We have one of the oldest cities in the world – Samarkand, which is over 2500 years old. The Great Silk Road used to go through a number of cities in Uzbekistan. We have a great and very rich history, so if you have a chance to visit Uzbekistan sometime, I would highly recommend it. Lots of photo opportunities for sure :)

      • 67
        ) Winston Cooper

        Many thanks for info and insight on 24-70mm. I shoot mostly studio and some light landscape and wildlife so your right that build is not first on list of needed items. I own a 70-200mm f4G so the 24-120mm f4 would be too much of an overlap. Actually a 20something to maybe an 80something f4 would be ideal and cost friendly like the above mentioned mentioned 70-200 f4. I was going to wait for possible Christmas sales anyway so your comments has given me greater incentive to hold off a little. In the meantime I will continue to shoot my models in my smallish home studio with my 50mm f1.4G and do location model work with my 85mm f1.8G

        Also many thanks for Uzbekistan comments…Palov and hot green tea sound delicious.

  14. I like the idea and the designs – but I also would suggest a different wording for “heavy life”. I comes across somewhat gloomy and not very positive. Unless of course you want it to be like that …

    Did someone say “still life” yet? As a visual artist it makes sense to use it.
    How about “larger than life”? Or is there only one word allowed before life?

    • Thank you for your valuable feedback Bjorn! We will change the title to Outdoor Life. I kept Heavy Life, because the guy was lugging a heavy backpack full of gear just to take some nice pics – something many of us, including myself often do :)

      As for Still Life, what type of a banner do you envision? Any suggestions? :) More than one word is allowed, just need to come up with some good ideas for the actual banners.

      • I’m very familiar with the heavy backpack so I understand where you came from with the idea. Outdoor Life is still way better than Heavy Life.
        I’m no designer, just a photographer – so I have very few ideas how translate the idea into a drawing :)
        For Still Life something classic like a fruit basket or a flower vase spring to mind.

        For Larger than Life all you need is a camera and an enormous lens.

        Is Night Life already on your list?
        The Milky Way would be a good motive for that one

  15. Hi Nasim- I have to admit that when I saw then new banners I really thought that Lola threw you out of the house because you spent more time on the computer than with her and you were writing all of your new posts from an apartment room. So in your retaliation you put up “Family Life” with a question mark followed by “Heavy Life” because you were trying to juggle too much so it was a “heavy burden.”
    But I am happy and relieved to find out that all is fine. :)

    Mark and Emily

    • Haha! You are pretty close to the real story, since I do spend quite a bit of time working on articles every day :) But Lola is nice to me, she did not throw me out of the house, LOL!

      Miss you guys! The workshop is in 2 weeks, bringing some great memories from last year. The weather has been terrible here, so I really hope that we will get to see some of the fall beauty this year again.

  16. 30
    ) John

    I, too, preferred the old banners but now I think I would prefer just the Photography Life logo in the top-left corner and no banner at all. But if you insist on using these new banners ;) then it’s redundant to give them names (Happy Life, Fashion Life, etc.) and just let the pictures ‘tell a thousand words’ instead since it’s obvious they are all part of Photography Life. With the ‘Happy Life’ banner it is a little weak on the theme so I would just scatter several more photo frames. Maybe have a family sitting on the sofa surrounded by photo frames on the wall and end tables. Great job by the artist, by the way.

    • Thank you for your feedback John! I also thought of just having the banner by itself, but the rest of the banner was empty and it did not look right (tried it before). I think if we continue working on these and come up with some good ones and funny ones, it might be entertaining for our readers :)

      As for text, I think some of those should be removed, while others should stay. Like the upcoming one with lots of lenses and a photographer in the frame looking at them titled “Gear Life” :)

      • 65
        ) John

        I agree that making them entertaining would be interesting, kind of like how Google puts a theme on their logo whenever they celebrate a holiday or event of some sort.

        Also, I would suggest making the Photography Life logo more prominent by making it either larger or adding a darker background/shape or just simply using a different color/texture. Regardless, I look forward to seeing the final product :)

  17. 32
    ) Greg Heller

    I like the idea of rotating banners, like others have said ‘heavy life’ should be changed, I recommend: ‘Active Life’ and some of them sound like – Chinese Takeout, Some have suggested just the logo with the rotating banner and no names that would be fine also. At any rate it’s a first class job everyone has done

    • Thank you Greg, we will work on the titles and remove some, since they might be redundant / self explanatory :)

  18. 33
    ) Tim

    Count my vote in the negative! Your prior banner actually attracted me to your site the first time I saw it to learn about photography. These latest have no attraction to me at all, and if I were a new reader, would in fact detract me from reading further to learn about photography at this site. The new logo is okay, but the banners do not give me a feel of professional photography. I honestly don’t think the change is good. Would be better if you posted photographic examples of what I could aspire to, rather than a cartoon drawing even I could do on my Samsung Galaxy Notebook.

    • Tim, thank you for your valuable feedback. One of the main reasons why I took the photos out, was because they took up a lot of space on the top and all photos were mine. Since we have more contributors, it was not fair that only my work was showcased. Also, it was tough to find images with such a wide aspect ratio and not everyone felt like making composites with a bunch of random images. I think the best solution is to open a separate section called “Gallery” to feature some of the best work from our contributors. That way, our readers can see the type of photography that we do (we are all photographers first, writers second) and hopefully get some inspiration :)

      • 112
        ) Tim

        I like the idea of a Gallery. What would be even helpful if those leaving photos in the gallery permitted, would be to provide information on exposure info, lens info, etc. they used to make the photo, or how they created the photo and published in Photoshop. Obviously not to give away trade secrets, but just general information so the “wanna-be’s” like me can learn.

        By the way, totally unrelated question – Do you have a recommendation for a wireless remote for the Canon 5D Mark III?

  19. 34
    ) Judy

    Nasim, your site is so wonderful, that it’s hard to think of change. We are going to miss your beautiful photos on the opening page, but I like the idea of a gallery. Regarding the “Heavy Life” theme, while it sounds a bit depressing, the graphic seems to be referring to the weight of all the gear he is carrying as he ventures out to nature, perhaps to capture landscapes. So is the reference to outdoor photography or photography gear? At least it has us thinking. As future banners are developed, I would love to see more diversity in the characters depicted to reflect all the beautiful people in our world. Another theme might be Architecture Life. I visit your site often and really appreciate all that you do to advance photography.

    • Judy, we will have a Gallery section for sure! I have been thinking about that for a while now, so I will start working on it this week. And yes, you are absolutely correct about Heavy Life – it was supposed to make fun of guys like me, that carry tons of gear to take that one shot :) Excellent idea for architecture life, will send it to our designer, along with the suggestion to have more diversity.

  20. 36
    ) La wrence King

    Really really disappointing, Loved the compelling photos. Doesn’t sound like it matters and it is your website but graphics v. photos is a big no. You still have an incredibly valuable site. Love it. But since you asked: BIG thumbs down.

    • Lawrence, we will add our photos to a separate Gallery section :) Like I pointed out earlier, it was hard to do photos in that wide aspect ratio (especially portraits), which is the reason why I decided to change the banner.

  21. 37
    ) John Francis

    While I find the new banners to be whimsical they are are very creative. That said I have always found you’re in depth articles to be exceptional both in content and opinion which makes me lean towards photos in the banners as it compliments the professionalism that you present to you’re readers.
    In any case those that follow your great reviews and insight will not be dissuaded by whatever
    “Eye Candy” you choose. If you’re goal is to attract new people I suspect it is their opinion you should be seeking.

    • Thank you for your feedback John! We decided to post our photos in a separate Gallery section, so hopefully we won’t take that part away from our new and old time readers :)

  22. 38
    ) Clarence

    A big no for me! I have been a long time follower and a big fan of this site. Objective professional gear reviews, well written instructional articles, and friendly comments and responses are what make this website great. The new banners just do not look professional and do not represent this site well. I apologize in advance if my opinion offended anyone!

    • Thank you for your feedback Clarence! We are still experimenting with the banners, so your feedback is really appreciated.

    • 95
      ) Anna

      Clarence,
      I have to agree with you completely. I too apologize if my opinion offended anyone as it’s certainly not intended to. When I first saw the new banner, it was the ‘heavy life’ banner and the guy looked depressed. I thought “awww, someone is making the poor guy is climb a mountain with all that hiking gear” and a camera. It took me a moment to realize that he even had a camera, though that’s exactly how I look when I go out for a day of shooting (my bag weighed 10 lbs at the airport recently, so I totally get it).
      I understand your logic about not using the previous banners, but they were awesome! They are a big part of what attracted me to the site in the beginning. As others have said, it’s an opportunity to showcase your photography, especially since it’s a photography site. :) Rotating banners would be great.
      Whatever you decide is ultimately your decision and as user of the site, I truly appreciate that you’re seeking our feedback. That’s commendable and very rarely done. You did a great job with the last redesign, and I’m sure this one will be great too. The graphic designer is clearly talented, but the concept needs a bit of refining. Also, if a first-time user is coming to the site and sees a banner for “fashion life”, that might throw him off because it could make it seem that that’s the focus of the site. if the person is on here once, you only get one chance to make an introduction and if that person thinks your site is something it’s not, it’s possible that person won’t return because of a misunderstanding. Maybe removing labels entirely is something to consider?
      Hope this is useful and helps.

  23. 39
    ) Alexei

    Love them! Very stylish!
    I would be nice to separate site sections by using banners. You could do something for equipment testing/review, flash photography, equipment upgrade.

    • Thank you for your feedback and your suggestion Alexei! That’s a neat idea!

  24. 40
    ) Steve

    I’m not a fan of simplistic drawings. However! An idea comes to mind.
    Why not incorporate drawings AND photos? Take a real photo, make a drawing identical to it. Then have them fade into each other in the banner. So, for example, the banner might show that great photo of the squirrel? with the greens in his mouth for 10 seconds then fade into a drawing of that photo for a further 10 seconds (or whatever time), alternating until a page refresh changes to a new photo and drawing combo. The number of unique banners would be limitless.

    Quite honestly, I’m more interested in the great articles and sample images that go with them. This is a great site regardless of the banners.

    • Thank you for your feedback Steve! I love your idea, but it would be hard to implement. The problem is – finding photos with a wide aspect ratio that work. That’s the main reason why the previous banner was so huge and it had that enormous logo to the left of the image. I only had 3 photos that rotated before. I think moving our photos to a separate Gallery section would be a better idea, as some of the readers pointed out above.

  25. I liked the photos but understand you want the banner to be graphic. Perhaps the banner with a images to reflect the theme merging in with the graphic, not that I would know how to do that.

    Other themes, one of your contributors showed images from a cemetery so how about After-Life!

    • Michael, looks like you had a similar idea as Steve – please see my response to him above.

      I love your “After Life” idea, although some people might be offended by it :)

  26. 45
    ) David Ahn

    Love them, especially “Heavy Life” and “Wild Life”!

    • Thank you for your feedback David :) Not everyone got “Heavy Life” and recommended to change it to “Outdoor Life”, since the word Heavy apparently sounds negative. I wanted to illustrate a person like me, that is ready to carry tons of gear just to take that one shot :)

  27. 51
    ) Edward Liu

    I like the new banners. I can see the argument for using photos up there, but anybody who hits any of the content will see it, and as long as the graphics involve cameras and camera gear, I think the point will be made. Every photography site has photos. These make you distinctive.

    Other ideas for banner graphics: sporting life (especially since you’ve done some great TKD photos), fast life/life in the fast lane (cars, motorcycles, etc), city life, country life, and high life/low life.

    • Thank you Edward, that was part of the reason why we wanted this change – we show photos every day, so a cartoon banner with some fun stuff might be a little more engaging for a change :)

      I have sent some suggestions for “Sports Life” (football), but forgot about TKD! Looks like you know a thing about Taekwondo, so are you still practicing? If yes, what level? Competition or just for health/fun? I have been out for about a year, since Lola delivered a baby girl. Hoping to get back right after the workshops, sometime in October :)

      Thanks for all other suggestions – will send those to the designer.

  28. 66
    ) MartinG

    I like the banners. They are an improvement and they are friendly. My view is that it would be nicer if they “connected” with something. Your major sections are: Home, Reviews, photography tips etc. It would be more useful if the banner had a connection. Home would be family, reviews would be wild life because the lens is prominent, photography tips would be fashion life because it appears to be setup as a studio like shoot. You may want to add some. I think heavy life goes with gear guide, as in things to consider.
    Just a suggestion

  29. 68
    ) Ananda Padmanaban

    I like these banners and they remind me of the google doodles. You can get very creative and change this based on whats appropriate or interesting for the time. I think this adds a bit more fun to the website.

  30. 70
    ) Don

    Nope. Sorry, no. Don’t like ‘em. They don’t convey the professional content you dispense. If I didn’t already know your site and came upon these banners, I wouldn’t stay. They give the impression of amateurish content and “light” coverage, which is not what you guys do. There was nothing wrong with what you had. I hope you can find something more in keeping with the high quality of your content.

  31. 71
    ) Maureen

    They are cute and I like the illustrations, however they seem to juvenile loooking for a website. Almost as if they should be in a children’s book. Also, I get the “heavy life” nod but kind heavy life if just too much of a downer. I do really like your extensive posts.

  32. 72
    ) Julie

    Bring back the mouse!

  33. As a concert photographer, I would suggest you add “Music Life” :)

  34. 74
    ) Michael Audette

    Firstly, I am a big fan of your site and most importantly the valuable and helpful information I find. I am afraid I am in the camp of Sue and Bill. The illustrations are bit Disney-like (family, fun, entertainment oriented — not that that’s bad), but they do not (in my mind) convey the nature and core values of the site which are primarily about things related to “photography life” and the audience you seem to attract — fairly serious, interested, sophisticated and for the most part intermediate to advanced in skill and knowledge — although some are novice.

    The positioning of a “brand” and it’s various properties (such as brand name, packaging — site graphics in this case) are about creating a relationship with its audience and user base, as well as developing new users/visitors. Also brands and their positioning elements create an “expectation” of what the brand
    stands for, is all about and what it will deliver. An example; Pillsbury — “Nothing says lovin like something from the oven” — they’re all about baked goods.

    I hope you find this helpful. Whatever you decide, I will continue to be a loyal fan and visitor to your site.

    Michael Audette

  35. 75
    ) Gamal

    Hi Naseem,

    All the logos look great, but what if you give a chance to the readers to contribute with a logo of their own picked up by voting at random time! (as I expect your site will end up to be too big – like open source)

    Gamal

  36. 76
    ) Johny Wong

    Hi Nasim,

    My favorite banner is actually the last one. The boy on the banner is very similar to your boy. Unfortunately, that banner doesn’t have any connection with what this website all about. So, I suggest you don’t use that banner anymore and make a new banner that can really describe this website. The other four banner is good.

    I also like the style of your banner. I can smile whenever I see it because I find it funny. On the other hand, I find that banner also describe what a photographer do. I think that banner is really able to describe the content of this website, which is giving serious information about photography in a relaxing and friendly way.

  37. 77
    ) Scott

    Hi Nasim

    I am an information consumption junkie, and source information from all over the web on numerous subjects. Your site is just one of many photographic sites (though yours is one of my top photo sites) that I use. Once I have a great source, I consume whatever is available, and do not really care what the pages look like, or what banners, ads and the like are displayed. What is critical to me is the reliability of the content, the information available, and the speed and ease-of-use of the site.

    To attract new users to your site, you have to ensure that you have a reasonable ranking within Google when searches are performed by a user, and/or to ensure that your existing users refer your site when dealing with their friends and fellow photographers; when these new users arrive, you have to give them reason to read and possibly dig further into the site, AND to give them a reason to revisit. It is for these NEW users that the banner may be important, to really persuade them to read and to dig further into what is available. Personally, I feel that your long-standing followers (like me) are unlikely to change their support simply owing to a banner design change. It is for the CONTENT, views and opinions that I continually revisit the site.

    Redisigning the site completely and changing the layout would not keep me away. I value the trusted opinions and views of you and your team, and the reviews (equipment, software, etc) that are so interesting. Sure, keep the site looking great and make whatever changes you feel are appropriate, but please do not compromise on site speed, content, nor ease-of-use when trying to achieve this.

    Personally. I would prefer photos in the banner, or even a simple Photography-Life logo with a mission statement (what can a first-time reader expect to find on the site), which I believe to be more relevant to your site theme, than a bunch of drawings…. but beware of change, simply for the sake of change….. does the banner change add any additional value to the site? … Maybe for others, but not for me.

    Just my view

  38. 78
    ) Eric Thompson

    Your photographs are way better than those cartoon banners.

  39. Had a second look this morning and agree the banners do not convey the sites photographic content. The banners are folksy, the site is technical and creative.

    MIke

  40. 80
    ) Patrick

    Hello Nasim,

    I noticed there are lots of different opinions upon these new banners.
    If there wasn’t a post about it i would probably not have noticed the change.

    For myself i do not prefer one over the other.
    Maybe it’s just something to get used to as in life things not Always go as you hoped for.

    The valueble information given on this site is worth much more for me than a design.

    • 81
      ) Federico

      Couldn’t agree more with Patrick. Besides, every single opinion against the new design is ignored, so I don’t get the point of asking for opinions if you’re not ready to hear something different than what you want to hear…

      • Federico, we have been listening to our readers and we are making changes based on the feedback. Not sure why you think that we are ignoring feedback. Looks like some people like the design and others do not. So I am already thinking of incorporating some photos to the banner. Or perhaps getting rid of it completely. I just thought this would be a positive change and a fresh look with these banners…

        • 85
          ) Christobella

          Boo to the naysayers! I think they’re fun, and what’s wrong with that?

  41. 84
    ) Lisa

    Very Cool! Nice !

  42. The new banners are very human, very friendly, they go well with the main concept of the site: photography from friendly human beings to other human beings.
    The fact that an Uzbeg designer is working on them makes the whole thing even nicer.

    So, some further ideas:
    - HighLife: classy people on antique furnitures, cars, etc. or aerial photography (both with different names?)
    - NightLife: astrophotography or street night/party photos (both with different names?)
    - DocumentaryLife: oh, my favorite, it can be everything from agile little bantu kids to street events (war photographers come to my mind as well, but there the message may not be as positive as you require (?) it)
    - BraveLife: action sports, cliffhangers, flying men, whatever :)

    Sorry if these were mentioned, I could read only half of the comments due to lack of time.
    Good luck with the banners – great concepts, good solutions, excellent redesign approach!

  43. 87
    ) Ridzuan

    Personally I am ok with the new logo as long as it relates to photography, what matters the most is the articles posted from your website which really informative and useful to me. This is what have me keep going back to your website. Cheers.

  44. 88
    ) Steve

    A photographer, a webmaster, and an artist walk into a bar…

    Nasim,
    I see your point about the size. It’s not easy to put a nice photo and logo into a 960 x 200 pixel rectangle. I just tried with horrible results. Even just a 700 x 300 photo was rough. That got me thinking some more. What about panoramas? Of cityscapes, landscapes etc? Maybe one of head shots of all the Photography Life contributors? (Each head can be hyperlinked to articles they’ve submitted, bios.)

  45. 89
    ) John

    Nasim,

    The new banners aren’t my style but they are interesting and well done. I really don’t care about the banners as long as you keep up with the great content!

  46. 90
    ) Jim Maynard

    I agree with the naysayers. Not nearly as professional or eye catching as the great photo you have been using. The site is about photography, and a more professional approach at that. Cartoon images don’t give me that impression at all. I suspect that a lot of the ideas can be captured as “panoramas” or triptyphs of some sort. Keep up the excellent articles and reviews and it probably doesn’t matter what the banner(s) look like, but cartoons may discourage some viewers from delving more deeply into the excellent content.

  47. 92
    ) Jacob Langlands

    Hi Nasim,

    It’s crying out for a reference to a classic song by the UK indie band Blur – Park Life!

    Enjoy! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SIEsmGzo2UE

    Jacob

  48. Very nice banners! They enhance the uniqueness and creativity of the site. Well done!

  49. 96
    ) Raghuram

    LOL = Lots of lenses! That said Nasim, the banners are really cool. Especially “Heavy Life”. I get it. I once helped a friend carry 30 kgs of gear up and down 1400 steps to click a waterfall in India. It redefined “heavy” for me! Great job Nasim. For a change, it’s nice to let our minds see images which are not “photographs”! Keep them coming.

  50. 97
    ) Rick

    I have to say I was not sure I liked it when I first saw the new logo. I really do miss the mouse/vole photo in particular. I always loved to see it no matter how many times I came to this site. However, after a bit of thought, it’s not really that important. The content of the site is key. If you want to experiment from time to time and try out a new look, go right ahead!

  51. 98
    ) Alan

    I think since your website is about photographs and photography, the banner should be photographs, not cartoon drawings. No brainer?

  52. 99
    ) Leonardo

    I really like them. It’s nice to have cartoons representing the various themes instead of actual photos.
    When I see happy life I go… errr……. jking I love my family :D

  53. 100
    ) Bruce

    As a graphic designer and a photographer I think they are great illustrations; just not for a photography site. I think it is a huge disconnect and seems to send the wrong message that photography cannot tell the story… I know the dimensions of a banner can be challenging for an image, but I suggest you crowd source and give credit to photographers who submit chosen work.
    I do appreciate the site content and it is obvious a lot of hard work and care goes into sharing. Thanks!

  54. I actually don’t mind to have an illustration at a photography web site, but somehow I think they don’t quite fit your site’s design. For me that’s obvious on the “3d” menu bar, with those flat drawing banners I would prefer to see a flatter menu bar.

  55. 102
    ) Nico

    I like the logos.

    So you are from Uzbekistan… My wife is Russian but she lived some time in Uzbekistan and no she cooks many times wonderful dishes like Manti.

    Anyway many compliments for the web site, it is now quite high in the list of my preferred bookmarks about photography ;)

  56. 103
    ) Radu

    Hi Nasim,

    I’m a Canadian, from Calgary, and was enchanted by your vacation blog # 2. I’ve been roaming all those mountains, now for 5 years.
    My question would be: I have a Nikon D300S, and my climbing partner says when I photograph him, his face is somehow redder than normal, although it does not seem so to me. I checked the settings of my camera and everything seems normal.
    If you have some suggestions, I would thank you in advance.
    Your truly,

    Radu Timis.

    • Avatar of Tom Redd
      107
      ) Tom Redd

      Radu, you may want to check your settings to see if you are shooting in Vivid. Shooting Menu > Set Picture Control > Vivid. If you are, that will saturate your colors and skin tones will especially look “redder”. Some sites – like Rockwell – suggest shooting in Vivid and while colors will pop a bit more, it is terrible for portraits /people.

  57. 104
    ) Edward Rabara

    I want a shirt with these banners!!!

  58. 105
    ) Vincent Valentino

    The graphics are cool, well thought out, and the artist that designed and drew them is very talented. That being said, I will say that I would rather prefer to see photographs used in the banners instead. As others have said, this is a photography website and I tend to agree with them and think that photos taken by the different contributors to this site would look better, not sketches and drawings, however well thought out and drawn that they might be. That’s just my opinion, and after all, this is your website and the bottom line is that the decision as to what the website looks like is yours and your alone… well, maybe your wife’s too. How about this, as in the new banners where it shows the photographer taking a picture of a model, or wildlife, have someone take of photo of Nasim or another photographer while setting up and/or photographing the scene, instead of just the subject. That might help solve some of the problem with stretching out a photo as you mention so it looks better. Or maybe use some more panorama shots as well. Again, just my opinion, and as I said, the only one that really matters is yours. New banners or old banners, I will still continue to come and visit your website as I always do for the great articles, reviews, tutorials, etc. that you continually provide to us everyday. Thanks Nasim for all that you do, and keep up the good work.

  59. 106
    ) Martin

    What about “Get a Life” for gear junkies like me who devour all the reviews, constantly upgrade cameras and lenses as a result, and don’t take any photographs?

  60. All of them are amazing! :)
    You could make one in which a group of people is sitting and listening keenly to a person who is holding a camera in his hand.
    That person with the camera in his hand would be you (or other authors of this site) and the others would be readers like us. While reading the articles, I feel as if I am sitting in a class and keenly listening to the teacher who is talking about my favourite subject! :)

  61. I like the artwork and the ideas of these banners. I love both art and photography so either way you go I am happy!

  62. When I was in business we changed image twice and spent far too much time considering the matter when we should have been doing what we did best, getting on with business.

  63. 111
    ) Ronald

    I think the new banners are cute. But I would rather see real photographs than cartoon images. If you want to send a strong message about photography then a stunning photograph can deliver that better.

  64. 113
    ) Wesley Gandee

    I grew up on a ranch. I fell in love with the hay bales in the near ground and the mountains in the background. This is my favorite photo of yours. I have hauled a lot of hay and have escaped to colorado to enjoy the mountains when I can slip away. I doubt there is anything you could do to your site that would have more meaning to me than that photo. But time moves on and I am already hooked on your site. Probably time to hook someone else. This is my favorite photography site.

  65. 114
    ) Kat Plover

    These banners are adorable! They don’t make the site any less informative or pleasing to be on. :-)

  66. 115
    ) Swapnil Ghiware

    Hello Nasim,

    My totally businessy perspective :-).

    Your existing users will keep coming to the site irrespective of type of banners. For these existing users (including me), content on the site rocks!.

    On the other hand, new users, who happen to land on the site through one of the many channels, typically spend just a few seconds trying to get a feel of the site before deciding to spend some more time. Now, for these users, I don’t believe the new banners provide a true representation of the high quality photography content on the site. So, my feedback is to go back to the old style and tweak it to solve the size/layout problem (which I believe is the problem that you are solving for).

    Thanks,
    Swapnil

  67. 116
    ) Sivacharan

    I appreciate your thought of making the website more friendly, but I am afraid I am not a big fan of these graphic banners. I understand that a lot of effort would have been put to come up with this theme, but i really loved the original photos..

    Just my opinion: If there are articles on wildlife, may be the banner is also a original wildlife photo.. If the blog post is something about portrait, then the banner has a original portrait photo and so on..

    I like the idea behind the theme but not the graphic as such.. It looks more childish.. :( and I don’t think this matches with dslr and pro photography..!!!

    But whatever it may be, I come here for the content and I will continue to come for it. :) All the very best..

  68. 117
    ) Mariusz

    I like the banners, and I would add “Night Life” with a guy working a long night in front of his computer.
    (that’s what I’m doing now)

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