Wednesday, March 30, 2011
I've added myself to About.me. If you have not joined this I highly recommend it. It's very simple but packs a lot of self promotional punch. Check out what others have done with this site-some pages are stunning especially some of the photographers on there. You have the option of backgrounds, different fonts to use, colour, size, and the links that you can add at the bottom. It's an awesome one page snippet that's perfect for promotion!
Tuesday, March 29, 2011
"I'm online. Therefore I am wasting time... logging off now!"
Going online is the biggest time buster that I can think of outside of cleaning the house and long commutes. My well intentioned 5 minute sit down often becomes an hour before I know it. It's hard to be disciplined when there so much to look at. There is an unlimited amount of information but also an unlimited amount of ways to waste my time. It's the Hoover of technology-it sucks you in every time!
The Internet is good to connect and collaborate. It's perfect for information gathering, connections and promotion. But is all this surfing helping or hindering you? Is it helping you connect or just distracting you? Or Worse, is it just escapism? Better still, have you ever tracked your Internet usage? I have and its amazing the time suckage that goes on!
Lately, I have been pulling away from the Internet more and more. Call it one of my new year goals. I am refocusing where I should be putting my creative energies. I have downsized my online surfing for one important reason: time!
For better part a decade now I've been participating online. I've joined sites and deleted myself from others. One thing is for certain before you know it your spending all your time online and not creating the good stuff!
I am downsizing my online inventory. That means I am sticking to a small pocket of sites to participate in. In a way I am cleaning house and getting much more done. This is a creative imperative!
So when it comes to being online how many sites are too many? If you cannot remember how many you have joined or you lack the time to add content to them then you have joined too many. Sadly, these sites do not remind you to post- you have to remember on your own!
Things To Ponder Before Joining Up
• Most sites require setup, registration and a password.
• There is upkeep.
• Some sites require action such as posts, images, latest projects, forums, weekly challenges.
• Not all sites allow you to upload images as easy as others which requires time to adjust images so they will download properly.
• Not all sites are free to join.
• Not all sites are secure. Do they require a phone number or address? Will they protect your email?
• Do you want your work spread from one end of the Internet to the other?
• How often can you realistically post something or update information?
A World Of Free
Free does not mean better or give you what you need. Your choices will be based on your needs and what you hope to accomplish by signing up. It often comes down to usability and budget. For me, the site that I will always pay for is my website. It may not be a community site but I can control what goes on it and where I promote it.
Best advice: if there is a specific thing or market that that is a creative must then join paid sites. One of the better paid sites is HAI!-Hire An Illustrator. This site gives you payment options: yearly or monthly! Again, before you hand over your credit card information do some research, ask for advice and testimonials. Look to see what others in your industry are joining and ask them for their opinion.
Before you press that registration button...
...ask yourself the following:
• What are the benefits?
• Will you use it?
• Is it user friendly?
• Does it help spotlight your work the best way possible?
• Is it legit?
• Does it come with terms and conditions that you can live with?
• Do you get a bad vibe from it?
Join and Be Proactive
Try to keep up on your membership sites. Good advice-don't post and forget. Make sure you keep up on what you have downloaded, your information, your personal information, your password and any possible feedback.
My Favourite Sites
• Illustration Friday
• Sugar Frosted Goodness
• The Little Chimp Society
• Illustration Mundo
• Hire An Illustrator
• Creative Cup Illustrators Group
• Design Related
... I will add more as I go along. As for me I am going to log off now and surf the real world for a while. :)