Webmaster note: This thing ended up being a lot longer than I intended. Don't get scared, there is a lot of pictures and I'm glad to help if you get stuck.
Below is an example of the template, with the editable region in the red box. I use Macromedia's Dreamweaver as my HTML editor, and recommend it highly. You can use any HTML editor that you want, as long as it doesn't require any special drivers to be loaded on the server. An example is that to use certain functions of Front Page, there has to be "extensions" installed on the server. You can still use Front Page, but don't use any of the embedded functions.
Before you get too involved in this section, you should download the template.
An example of a perfectly utilized template is the WG Illustrations link in the Artist List in the left column.
A few key points to remember about this template. As it says in yellow, sample images can be no wider than 225 pixels. The small type below that says it looks nice if you put your item on a solid black background, but it isn't required. I would really appreciate it if you would "optimize" your graphics before uploading them. I use a program called Smart Saver Pro, but feel free to use anything you want. An optimizer reduces the file size of a graphic image, so the Web page will load faster.
The template comes with a table that can hold six item pictures and descriptions. That is the maximum for a page. You must create a new page if you are displaying more than six items. If you leave the HTML code in place for six items, and you are showing less than that, there will be a gap at the bottom. This is perfectly acceptable. The example above has only one item, so the gap is larger. If you had three items, the gap would be half the amount shown above. If you decide to remove the extra "rows" be careful not to corrupt the HTML code for the table.
If you look at the source code of the template, or work with and HTML editor that has a split window, NEVER change anything above the comment line: <!--DO NOT ALTER ANY CODE ABOVE THIS COMMENT LINE -->
or any of the HTML code below the following comment line:
<!--DO NOT ALTER ANY CODE BELOW THIS COMMENT LINE -->
The code above the line is for the mouseover of the menu in the header of the page and the CSS code. In the zip file is a text file called abovehead.txt. It is just the source code for the area before the </Head> tag. This is just to make it easier to fix, if you see the mouse over at the top isn't working.
Right below that is the body tag, which sets the background of the page to black, and pre-loads the graphics for the mouseover in the header. The file that has just that single line of code is bodytag.txt. Again, this is just to simplify fixing broken pages.
At the top of your editable region, it is pretty much self explanatory. If you don't have a Web site, just delete that line. It is really important that you put some sort of copyright notice. I don't care if it is just "Do anything you want with this stuff." I'm not a lawyer, and I'm not giving legal advice. If you want to get the very best wording, see a real lawyer.
From what I've seen most people allow people to use the rendered images for personal or commercial use, but don't want anyone to distibute the model itself. This doesn't address the usage of resulting images in animations, games, or such.
This is not a required statement, but just an example of the wording for someone who's copyright matches the objective in the paragraph above.
Example: Copyright Notice
© Copyright 2006 - Your name here - All rights reserved
The files enclosed in this pack are free to use for all personal or commercial rendered still images. The files may not be redistributed, and resulting images may not be used for animations, games, or advertisements. Please list me in the credits for resulting works.
Again, the above is only an example. I don't know if it is bulletproof legally, so if you are concerned see a lawyer.
The only other thing at the top of the page is about the pages. If you only have one page, it isn't necessary to have anything. If you have more that one page of items, please use the following format:
The blue arrow is a gif file that is included in the template.zip file. The arrow going the other direction is in there too. The number 2 after the arrow is just HTML text. I usually make both the arrow and the number a hyperlink to the next page. If you had 3 or 4 pages in might look something like:
Page 1 of 4 2 3 4
You could link the arrow to page 2, but they could get to 3 or 4 directly.
1 2 3 Page 4 of 4
The above is an example of how you might handle the pages after the first.
1 Page 2 of 4 3 4
Here is an example of a page in the middle.
To make additional pages. Just take the unaltered version of the index.html file and rename it to something like p2.html or page2.html. Just make sure that you link them correctly. The file name really doesn't matter.
Here is the top portion of a well done page as an example:
If you items just won't fit in the standard template, there is a file in the template called alternate.html. The editable region is the area in the red box below:
This template doesn't have any tables, or any predefined code. It is so simple that the entire source code below the </head> reads:
The red arrow points to the region of the source code where you put your own HTML. I reserve the right to delete, re-edit, or whatever to get the page to look good. I'll contact you if I'm going to do anything major. Again, if you get buried and have questions, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.