Behind the Scenes: Creating the Website

by J.V Krakowski

Everyone likes knowing what happens behind the curtains. Knowing you’re in on a secret is an enticing feeling that most people take at first opportunity. It’s a sense of adventure that makes behind-the-scenes content interesting. I thought a little behind-the-scenes action would be a breath of fresh are for everyone.

I launched a personal website a few months ago. It was part of a graduation project for my masters degree. It needed to showcase our leadership abilities and professional skills. We could use either Wix or Wordpress to make it, per the assignment rules.

I asked to develop it myself and launch it on Github Pages. The professors gave me a go-ahead, and, now, here I am.

On a whole, I prefer minimalist designs that focus on content and users. It can be a bit underwhelming, though, so I chose somewhat of an in-between. The color palette and layout are my own creation. The background image, though, is a product of FreePik.

By my thinking, a personal website is like a digital resume. I modeled the website with a creative resume in mind. I looked at roughly a hundred similar sites to get a good feel for the premises.

I chose to build the website on Jekyll, since it’s my latest favorite. Jekyll is a creation of Github’s co-founder, Tom Preston-Werner. It’s written in Ruby and uses Markdown, Liquid, HTML, and CSS to deliver a static site. It was quick and easy without the need for regular updates.

Now, I can focus on writing content, working on assignments, and being a mom.

Jekyll makes it easy to create websites. It doesn’t showcase any kind of genius or skill. Since I haven’t used Github, I don’t have other projects to make up for that. I would’ve uploaded past projects, but I lost most of my work when my computer crashed a few years back.

Back then, I didn’t bother storing my code on an online platform like Github. It wasn’t a lack of skill with Git or anything, but rather a lack of motivation to take that extra step to preserve my code. I felt uncomfortable leaving my code out there for anyone to rove through at will.

I was very private with my work. I still am (to a degree). I’m working on passion projects to showcase what I can do. I’d like to get them all released before I shoot a list out.

In any case, check out Jekyll and Github when you have a moment. Both are awesome resources.

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