Showing posts with label blogging. Show all posts
Showing posts with label blogging. Show all posts

29 Mar 2008

Sometimes blogging sucks ...

I haven't been able to edit either of my blogs' layout recently due to problems with Blogger Layout page. This has been going on for several weeks and AT LAST I have found out what was causing the problem .... many months ago I added a scrolling bar feature to the top of this blog (a rather nice banner showing a selection of my paintings) and apparently it was this that was preventing the Edit features on the Layout pages from working properly. The reason? ..... because I had not written the widget in Javascript!!!! [Not that I would know how to, and everything worked fine initially until Blogger added some Super Dooper Whooper Features a couple of months ago ....! ]

So I've had to delete the scrolling banner from this web page and am now able to access ALL the editing features on BOTH blogs. Happily this means that I have been able to UPDATE and ADD all the new artist members data to Art Blogs 4 U .... the poor things have had to wait ages while I tried to find the cause of the problem. Apologies to them ALL ........ we now have 177 member artists!!

7 Oct 2007

Pastel and Paint

Billy Mac over at Critique My Blog has written a few kind words about my blog. If you've never visited this site then you are missing a great source for all kinds of blogs, plus Billy Mac's comments on them!

17 Sep 2007

Technorati - a parting of the ways

Well it sort of feels a little scary but I have made the decision to break with Technorati .... and so what, you may ask? When I first started out with blogging I read up on available advice for promoting ones blog, use of search engines and the like. Most sources seemed to advise that listing with Technorati was paramount for a blog's visibility and success ...........

.... so I duly joined up and just bit my lip a few times over various hiccups that occurred with my first blog (this one). However, things went from bad to worse when I created my second blog Art Blogs 4 U ...... and I have lost track of how many times I've had to request technical support/assistance because, for some unknown and unfathomable reason, Technorati has never properly updated post details or correctly rated the number of links Art Blogs 4 U has.

To try and get any assistance has been an absolute nightmare and enough to make me tear my hair out .... the only consolation being that I only have to read the User Forum to find out that I am not alone! So in keeping with my new 'life is too short to put up with any crap' philosophy I have decided to do without Technorati and go it alone. At the end of the day I am sure that it will make very little difference ..... my stats tell me that visitors to my blogs rarely find them through Technorati in any case. And I long ago realised that blog promoting is a tiresome and time-consuming chore .... and can sometimes become an unhealthy compulsion.

Would love to hear of other people's opinions and experience of Technorati so do please comment.

14 Aug 2007

it's a blog's life!

I haven't been paying much attention to my stats lately .... so its come as a bit of a shock to see that visitor numbers to this site have been falling a bit of late. I have to say that when I first started this blog 20 months ago I followed all the advice for promoting it to get it noticed and I watched over my visitor stats avidly! Since then I have become less inclined to put in the same amount of time .... constant promotional effort is required and life is just too short!

Of course, if a blog meets a lot of people's requirements then it will gather an audience and climb the popularity charts virtually unaided, .... but such blogs are few and far between and obviously this is not one of them!

Happily though, my other blog Art Blogs 4 U is doing far better! And there are now 117 artists listed and linked, many of whom have provided short bios about themselves plus images of their art for current and future postings. It is very gratifying that this little venture is providing a small service to fellow painters and I do thank those who have become members for giving it a go.

If anyone is interested the site has this button

Links you to artists who like to blog about their art

and, if you'd like to place one on your own blog (please!), the code instructions can be found here

14 Apr 2007

this and that

Oh dear, it's a long time since I posted anything, isn't it? ....... Hope that you've missed me. HA! Anyway, I'm still here and have been managing to do a bit of a foray around the Web.

For your amusement here is a little video (a friend sent me the link, so thanks Carole) .... the subject is a new take on 'technical support' to be found at Bore Me ... I thought it v. funny!

And I've received notice today that Blog Flux have acquired and revamped a service called Commentful which allows you to tracking actual blog conversations! RSS feeds are great to find out when a blog has a new post, but this lets you track comments on a specific post. Blog Flux explain "Any time you visit a page where you wish to track comments, you add it to your Watchlist (this can be done through our FireFox extension, bookmarklet, or through the website). Every time you visit your Watchlist, the system checks to see if there are any new comments. For those using our FireFox extension, there is no need to visit the website - our extension adds a little image to your status bar. Whenever there is an unread comment, it turns green. We even provide an RSS feed if you wish to track it that way."

And for those of you who are new to Blog Flux ... they have a lot of great services and widgets on offer! You can even make your own Link Button for free - like this:

Links you to artists who like to blog about their art

Its a just pity that I can't make a link button for this blog .... the name is way too long!

And I can also report that traffic to Art Blogs 4 U has increased quite a bit this week since we received a mention on Art News Blog, - thanks, Dion. Well, I think that's all the Bloggie news I have for now ......

Think of me tomorrow (Sunday) and send positive vibes ... am organising morning tea and a two course lunch for our local Lawn Bowls Tournament, there will be around 64 bowlers + officials. Thankfully, I will have some help but there will only be four of us, so better get an early night!

29 Dec 2006

New Year at Art Blogs 4 U

Firstly, I wish everyone reading this every success in the coming year, - whatever your hopes are for your art or anything else in 2007 may they all come to fruition!

Secondly, here is an update on progress at my other website
Art Blogs 4 U:

  • Art Blogs 4 U has been running for one calendar month and has received 800+ visits.
  • We have 41 artist members.
  • We have published 16 artist Bios, and have a further two waiting in the wings.
  • Thirty-one artist members have placed a link to Art Blogs 4 U on their sites.

YOU CAN HELP TO BUILD ART BLOGS 4 U in the following ways:

  • Add a LINK to Art Blogs 4 U.
  • Mention and/or place a LINK to Art Blogs 4 U in one of your POSTS.
  • Join Art Blogs 4 U and Send me your BIO!

NEW FOR 2007!!!! - Featured Artists!

Starting early in the New Year I will post an example of an Artist member's work at regular intervals as 'Featured Artist'. Members should send details of the painting that they would like featured.

Do this by sending me the exact URL of where the painting is posted on your blog .... I will then reproduce the image on Art Blogs 4 U. When I post the image I will of course add your name, a few details about the work, plus a link back to your blog.


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19 Dec 2006

Blogging and art in 2006

Next week it will be one whole year since I started this blog .... an appropriate moment to pause and think about the past twelve months, both as a blogger and an artist. Someone else whose blog has its first birthday this month is Fine Line Artist, Katherine Tyrrell, who has written a very interesting post about her experience of blogging art in 2006 and makes some pertinent observations that many bloggers and 'wannabees' will find helpful. Katherine has a very professional approach to blogging and her blog ranking, and the traffic she receives daily, are a testimonials to her success.

For those interested in the why's and wherefore's of art blogging there is a long-running discussion thread at Wet Canvas called
To Blog or Not to Blog which is worth a look. I started this thread almost a year ago when I was a real 'newbie' and many artists have added interesting and helpful tips and information to it along the way.

I may not have been particularly successful at blogging (taking Ranking and daily visitors as a yardstick) but I have certainly gained an awful lot from it. For me the most important personal benefits have been:

  1. The pleasure of finding and reading blogs I like from all around the world
  2. 'Meeting' and 'talking' with many new and interesting people
  3. Observing the artwork and artistic processes by other artists
  4. Receiving feedback on my paintings and posts

And I currently have three blogs. My second one, my Gallery blog, was started in February, but was then closed for a while and restarted in October, while my third was begun in November. This last is a link list for Artist Bloggers entitled Art Blogs 4 U, and incorporates short artist Bios with more features to be added in the New Year.

Close of year is definitely a time for reflection and in December's Newsletter ArtBiz coach, Alyson B Stanfield, recommends that we give credit to ourselves for things we have achieved rather than dwell on our failures or omissions. Alyson says 'With that in mind, what did you do this year?' Here is a selection from her list of considerations - my selection only includes ones where I can give a positive response:

What trips (local or far away) did you make to nourish your art?
How much money did you make from your art?
What classes (business or creative) did you take?
What books did you read? What magazines?
How many names did you add to your mailing list?
What habits or routines did you put into place?
What habits or routines did you eliminate?
Where did your name or artwork appear in print?
Where did it appear online?
How did you improve your website or Web presence?
What new marketing materials did you add or improve on?
Where did you speak about your work?
What new materials or techniques did you experiment with?
What organizations did you join?

Reflecting on the list made me realise that 2006 has been mostly a good year .... for blogging, art and making new friends and contacts!


I have decided not to keep my second-born blog anymore .... so I have deleted it. Alas, dear Gallery Blog, - R.I.P.

Maybe a website is the way to go in 2007 - we'll see.

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10 Nov 2006

.... better and BETA ........?

Sorry guys but I have just swapped over from Blogger to Blogger Beta, .... and there is no turning back! All my hard work over the past 11 months has gone down the gurgler, viz:

1. All links will have to be re-entered one by one!
2. All the little embellishments I'd done with HTML are lost and I cannot see yet how I am ever to re-do them.
3. Its lost my RSS Feeds and I've yet to work out how to put them back in.
3. The HTML or whatever it is seems different, and the system also uses tweakers or twisters or winkles .... or some such bloody thing if you want to add something customised! (actually its 'widgets' ... don't understand them and don't want to)

Anyway ... NORMAL SERVICE will resume as soon as possible, I hope.

My head hurts.

23 Jun 2006

How much is YOUR blog worth today?

My blog is worth $50,244.06.
How much is your blog worth?

Well .... this is a bit of fun! I will try it again in a few weeks! Why don't YOU have a go?

18 Jun 2006

blog preference - an up close and personal thing!

Well I've been a 'blogger' for about six months now, and its been a lot of fun. When I started out I had never looked at a blog in my life, but now I feel that I have seen enough of them to have some idea of what I like (and don't).

Blog preference is obviously a very personal thing .... sadly, hardly any of my friends and relatives are interested in reading mine! (I know this from my stats) A bitter pill? ... not really, I don't hold it against them. Well, I try not to!

While I was getting my own art blog sorted I tended to only look at blogs about painting, but lately I have been searching further afield, and I have been stunned by the number and variety of blogs out there! ... does the whole world have one? Of course not, but it certainly seems like it!

Blogs that I DON'T and WON'T read include any with poor writing and/or spelling, teenage angst/ navel searching, erotic art or literature, fashion whims, celebrity news, and ghastly 'streams of consciousness' from the self-obsessed.

Neither am I keen on people telling me about the importance of God in their lives at every turn. If that's what they want to say, then fine ... but I don't have to read it. However, a religious blog is fine with me if it informs of things that I did not already know like Be Convinced by Ysaf Islam (formerly Cat Stevens), which offers insight into what it means to be a true Muslim. Personally I felt that I needed to know more about that, given all that is happening on the world stage.

Politics can also be a rather touchy subject, so as a 'newbie' Kiwi I tend to keep my opinions to myself (stranger in a strange land, and all that!), - although I exercise my right to vote of course. I am still exploring options in this arena and currently dip into David Farrar, Sir Humphreys and Public Address for a variety of viewpoints on current events in New Zealand.

But, for me at least, blogs about the Arts will always be my first love. I have mentioned some favourite artist blogs before in previous posts, and have listed many of them on my main page, but here are one or two of them again (plus a couple I haven't written about before).

First up is Kim Denise, from Rochester, New York, who has only been painting for about a year but is already an exceptional pastellist of the realism school. Next are two artists with very different styles, who not only paint great pictures but also write very interestingly about their lives and their art, Tracy Helgeson, also from New York State, and Valerie Butters from Montreal, Canada. Currently Tracy is painting colourful impressionist landscapes and Valerie is busy with a series of huge sumptious florals - also impressionistic. Please take a look.

The other day I mentioned Life in the NHS as being of personal interest to me as an ex-nurse from the NHS. I also consider it to be well-written, as is Novelist In Training which I will be following with interest from now on.

Finally if, like me, you like contemporary music but hope to find something a little different? Then the latest addition to writer and journalist Graham Reid's site might be of interest to you, too .... and, even if music is not your scene don't worry because, there is an abundance of fascinating stuff about travel and the arts too Elsewhere ........ mmm!

So that's my little number on blog preferences .... whether you find that you agree with me or not I hope that you will add your comments.

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14 Jun 2006

... now this has made me VERY cross!

This morning I've received an INVITATION ......... to exhibit a painting? to put on a study day? to dine out? to party? No .. it's an invitation to sign up to the All Blog Stars blog.

What is this blog? Apparently it's where (once you've joined up) "you just take your best post of the week, or whenever you feel you have a really great post, and post it here".

What do you get out of it? "There, now you're a star."

and WHO exactly is the author of this blog? "Who is this, you may be wondering. That's not important, so let's not worry about that, shall we? Please keep it to yourself if you do figure it out."

Oh, PLEASE, give me a break!

Post my best post of the week? .... You've got to be kidding. I want people to read my posts right HERE, thanks very much.

And be a star? ...... How patronising! In any case, WHO exactly is going to take the trouble to FIND and READ my particular posts should I decide to contribute any?

And why all the 'cutie coy' closet secrecy about who this person is? .... as far as I'm concerned they are Nobody-I-would-want-to-have-anything-to-do-with!

You may be thinking that I am doing 'whoever-it-is' a favour by even mentioning the All Blog Stars and giving some free advertising. But Hey! my reasoning is this:

he/she propositions blog-owners in order to sit back and let other people populate the blog with their best posts and provide lots of free links ... well, I think people need to consider how they want to play that.

And if you'd like to take a look at the sort of thing that's getting posted there .... Well, its your choice to make!

What are your thoughts on this? .... please leave a comment.

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