Suggested Solutions for Creating Two Specific Blogs? Web framework to use?

by MightyBlueWater   Last Updated August 22, 2019 20:04 PM

I am looking for suggestions/ideas for how to go at this about creating two blogs/vlogs. I prefer to focus mostly on front-end development and not worry too much about back-end development once it's set up. I am okay with setting up the back-end part, as long it's safe to do so and not overly difficult/complicated to do so. I am willing to learn. I just want to be able to focus on creating content once it's set up and not worry too much about keeping server safe all the time. I'm okay with occasional maintenance and changeover of site look from time to time. I am in an exploratory mode now, trying different things/frameworks and seeing what's best for long term.

I can do HTML, CSS, and can learn JS. I am comfortable with linux command line (just not a guru). I know some python, which led me to think about django framework. I'm new to back-end web development, so forgive my ignorance and lack of understanding in how everything ties together. My knowledge is in bits and pieces ha.

  • For the first site, I am looking to create a slick portfolio of high quality photography and videos. I plan to use the HTML templates I got from envato and to tweak it a little bit to create a custom look (Inshot and Kotlis template).

  • For the second site I am looking for the following:

    • Similar to first site portfolio but more of a collection of photos and videos possibly with tagging/rating system in it (if it's not difficult to pull off).
    • Mapping aspect in it. I could keep it simple with leaflet javascript library (which I messed around with and managed to make a simple map out of it). Or I could set up something with Postgres + PostGIS which can be connected from QGIS or ArcMap. I am very knowledgable with GIS, just weak on the web GIS aspect. So I'm not sure what's a good workflow there yet. Leaflet seems simple and light which is very appealing to me and I saw that QGIS has feature where you can just export your project to a leaflet instance. There's geoDjango, which I haven't tried out yet.
    • Private page for family and friends (essentially serving as a private photo gallery) I have set up two domains, started messing around with setting up digital ocean droplet and running a server. I've been following instructions on these to get server up and installed, including setting up SSH, installing nginx and making it go to two sites. I was able to install django, but I am not sure if that's overkill in what I'm looking for. Plus there seems to be a learning curve there, where I prefer to focus on front-end aspect mostly.

I am trying to think what's overkill and what's not. And whether if I'm using right approach. I prefer to keep it simple and not having to maintain it too much once I build it. Like if I create a server back-end part, will I have to worry about keeping it safe from hackers and keep checking on it as I would if I were a sysadmin?

Is Wordpress the way to go? But I saw that they don't have option for just dropping in html/css/js file somewhere. I also read that Wordpress has bad security issue. I've used Wordpress before and seemed user-friendly, but not sure how far I can go with customizing the website to fit what I need.

Getgrav good? (or any other flat-file CMS) But how do I make custom html/css/js? How does it fit in there?

Django? I thought of this because I liked python and know some python. Is it worth learning this? And can I create something once where I can just focus on creating contents afterwards? Like for example if I create a special photo gallery app, then afterwards, I only need to add pictures/videos?

Is Digital Ocean good way to go? Or should I use other provider like Bluehost to manage my server?

I looked at other static website generator like Hugo and Gatsby as recommended by redditors here, but not sure how it works in terms of being able to customize your own html/css/js?

Should I just keep it static html/css/js and have ngnix point to these two sites? And I also read somewhere that it's better to keep it on CDN, so I see digital ocean offer CDN storage - is that where I should keep all website in there? If so, how to make the server point the request there?

Sorry for the long post - just wanted to be through with options and thoughts I've explored. I am thankful for your thoughts in advance and appreciate them!

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