And So It Begins...
I would love to be able to say that building and launching this new website for our concert line harps has only been on my To Do List for two years but, sadly, the reality is more like seven. I did actually build an entirely new site as large as this one but the server it was on literally burned (an actual fire extinguisher was involved) and I wasn't as insane about backing things up to multiple places as I am now. Lesson learned.
I did approach the content construction of this site differently than I had in the past. I greatly simplified many of the technical pages. I did this not because our customers could not understand the previous iteration but because no one has the time to wade through dense written information and, in the case of humidity, literally, math in order to get a basic understanding of what is happening to the cells of the wood in their harp. I opted to make things shorter. Should anyone wish to have the looonnnnggg version, let me know. If I receive several requests I will probably post the deadly boring versions as a pdf on the pages where that is appropriate.
I also decided that I was done with just having pretty pictures of harps in a totally sterile environment or showing the occasional internationally known harp pro with her elbow draped over the arch of the harp and smiling. I mean, those photos are always really nice and very attractive and the harps do look scrumptious but the reality is that most of us aren't those high-end professionals. Most of us are just people who love to play our harps and for whom our harps are sheer joy. I really wanted to show our average customers (some of whom are pros) with their harps. Over the years we have received so many photos from folks but untold numbers were lost (server...fire extinguisher) so the shots we currently have on the site don't go back very far. We invite, encourage and beg you to send us photos of you with your Rees harp. If you have a quote you would like to send along or a story of you and your harp, so much the better. Over time the goal is to have a site rich with the faces, words and stories we receive from you.
Along this same line, I really am interested in communicating how our customers feel about their harps and how our harps form a part of lives. While I have provided quite a lot of detail about the factual information surrounding our harps, these sections of the site will likely not grow much over time. I will add-in anything folks think is necessary but the parts of our site which will grow will be the people-oriented aspects and I invite any input you may have on ways you would like to see this evolve. Take a look at the photo of Jana Bauerova, from the Czech Republic (accompanying this post and appearing on our home page, the Shaylee Meadows Harp page and as the banner on our new Facebook page). I absolutely love this photo. That look on Jana's face...that's why I do what I do. Jana isn't effervescent because of her harp, she's effervescent because her harp enabled her, as a singer-songwriter, to do something she truly loves to do...and we can all see it in her smile.
One last thing...
For those of you in the know, I have been exceedingly ill for most of the last two years. In early March I was well enough to have the major surgery I needed to solve the problem. (The surgery went even better than expected and I feel amazing.) While I was only in the hospital for a couple of days I had to be in bed for the better part of seven weeks. After I learned to knit and got really tired of coloring I got to the stage where I felt well-enough to be able to actually think. So, I built this website! Lemons...lemonade!
Life is good and I wish you all grace in these times of tumult.
Cheers! - Pamela Rees