Review: YVRchives

Hello again my lovely, lovely readers! On this semester’s final episode of peer reviews, I welcome you to the cozy little gallery known as YVRchives, a local photography blog with an aim to “celebrate different photographers’ take on beautiful B.C.’s Vancouver.” is run by my fellow Vancouverite Shania Bakhtiani, who is an aspiring photographer themself, and is using their blog space to explore and showcase the work of some local artists.

Photography sample by Jaume Creus. A shadowed person stands outside in front of a storefront at nighttime. The storefront has a glowing sign that reads "Tirelli" and has five large boarded up windows. A puddle on the  cement ground reflects the light from the glowing "Tirelli" sign.
Photo by Jaume Creus –

Right off the bat, the witty name YVRchives drew me in, and it didn’t take long after exploring the site for me to fall in love with the blog. Shania’s passion for photography is extremely evident in every post that they publish to the archive gallery; the way they write about each week’s featured artist is so appreciatively critical of the art. It’s beautiful to feel through their writing just how inspired the author is, and they make it easy to share that excitement with them as you follow Shania on their journey through their blog. Perhaps I’m a bit biased as a film student, but I think that the photography showcased on YVRchives is truly captivating, and it’s awesome to get to see some small and local artists get their work shown off in such a positive environment.

As for the website’s aesthetic designs and layout, YVRchives does a wonderful job of staying clean and simple in order to draw the appropriate attention to the photographs being displayed throughout the site. The dark, nighttime work of Vancouver film photographer Jaume Creus really stood out on the blog’s light, neutral background, and successfully pulled me right in to reading my first YVRticle (see what I did there?). Additionally, I found the website’s dark green accents reminiscent of Vancouver’s lush landscapes, which is a perfect allusion to what inspired the blog in the first place. From a more technical standpoint, the design of the site’s homepage is quite intuitive (in reference to Victor Kaptelinin’s “Affordances”), with large coloured buttons obviously leading to go somewhere interesting, and a functioning search-bar that can help viewers navigate using keywords.

If I could add anything to this already well-established website, I would really love to see more of Shania Bakhtiani’s own work out on display somewhere on! Maybe the author could add a new section to the navigation bar titled “portfolio,” where they could add some of their personal photography projects. The addition of a portfolio would be a great way to help the author of the blog further connect with their readers, and also just to get their work out there because self-promoting is totally important for small and indie artists! Speaking of, I should really post some of MY art on here… maybe Shania and I can make a little agreement, I post some art, they post some art, and YOU readers at home go on and give us local artists some love. Anyways, it’s always a pleasure getting to review my peers’ blogs, and YVRchives did not disappoint, so make sure to stop by the archive gallery and tell Shania I said hi!

Victor Kaptelinin. “Affordances.” The Encyclopedia of Human-Computer Interaction, Chapter 44. Interaction Design Foundation.

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