Category Archives: Blogging

Content Creation and Stock Photography

One of the projects I’ve been working on is a Spanish language blog. I’m not fluent in Spanish, yet I wish to be. So I decided to create mi-palabra-del-dia.com as a way to stay motivated each day and learn and practice my Spanish.

Each Monday, I usually spend the afternoon editing photos I’ve taken over the week and creating that weeks content for the blog. This morning I realised I really didn’t have any good photos pertaining to that subject matter. What to do ? morguefile.com is the answer.

When you’re in a pinch morguefile.com is a great place to grab some free stock photography for your blog or website. The term morgue file comes from the old newspaper days when journalists would need a picture for a story but didn’t have one. The photographers had what were called “morgue files” of images that could be used in a pinch. In a pinch the journalist would go to the morgue file and look for an image that pertained to their subject matter. I’ve used this site in a pinch for a long time now and you can find some really great photos there. The site really lives up to its name.

As far as I know , the only rule is that you can’t use the image in a standalone manner. In other words you have to edit the images a bit and personalize them for your content. Just what I needed. Here’s a couple examples of some things I created using there content.

artwork for my spanish blog

Strawberries for my Spanish blog. Las Fresas Amigos !

La ardilla, a squirrel for my Spanish blog.

la ardilla, the squirrel. Cute little guy isn’t he.

The top image has really been manipulated using Gimp. I did a cut out of the image using a font as a mask to cut the image. I then added a border, some more plain text, and the original image of strawberries. For the second image I simply added a little text and my site url.

I’m pretty sure using the images in a stand alone manner pertains to offering the images by themselves for download. However, you could simply add some text, a border, or create a collage out of a couple different images. I’ll explain more on these things in future post and maybe even use some of these photos for examples.

For the tweeted version of this post: “If you need stock photography in a pinch, try www.morguefile.com

If you open an account, make sure to follow me here. http://morguefile.com/creative/newaeondesign

May News Letter

Like the spring weather here in Western New York, I’m getting a late start on the May news letter and monthly update. Things have been real busy around here, and I’ve started building a portfolio, and cleaning up some of my blogs and designs.

First things first, I’d love to explain the current theme of the blog. I haven’t gone soft, I’m simply trying to bust out of my comfort zone. Being a d00d many of my designs have a darker theme, and also a more manly feel to them. I thought for spring I would try to force myself out of my comfort zone and create something with a softer more feminine feel to it. Thus we have pinkish purple flowers, with a floral theme. I may have went a bit overboard but it’s my first attempt at this type of designing. I’m going to be changing it up in June with a more summery theme that I haven’t really decided on yet. However, for the next several months I am going to be focusing on getting out of the comfort zone.

I’ve been adding blogs to my portfolio. Currently, I’m maintaining 4 on Blogger, 2 using WordPress, and I’ve been playing around on Tumblr. I don’t really know what to think about Tumblr, but with Yahoo purchasing the company earlier this year I think it’s going to be an up and coming platform in the future. For that reason I’ve been giving it a little bit more attention than I believe it really deserves. Currently here’s what my blogging portfolio looks like. If your bored and any of these topics interest you check em out.

Blogger Blogspot Blogs

Maintained for clients :
Helene’s Mostly Jewelry – Jewelry Blog

Hobby blogs by me :
Notes On Using Linux
My Amateur Photo
Mi Palabra Del Dia

WordPress Blogs

The Bitcoin Blog – Whole Site Currently Under Development.
The Design Blog – This blog that your currently reading.

Tumblr Blogs

Because Tumblr is a really different type of blogging service, I’ve been using it to mirror some of my current blogs. I try to post different information but also link the post from my other blogs to it. This has proven very effective in traffic generation. I think Tumblr really falls somewhere between social networking, or maybe social blogging. It’s a very different platform then the other services available. For example, users really can’t comment, only share posts. I’m going to be doing some more posts about blogging this month. I’ll be sure to add more information on Tumblr. For now here are the blog mirrors.

New Aeon Design – Sort of a mirror to this blog.
Mi Palabra Del Dia – Mirror to my learn Spanish blog on Blogger.

Staying with the busting out of my comfort zone theme. I tried my hand at a retro redesign. This was a really fun project for a customers news letter. I learned a lot with the design, and on my next attempt I’ll be changing more than a couple things, but I had fun designing it and the customer was happy.
Fun Retro Redesign for Helene's Mostly Jewelry.
The concept is to take some old public domain ad stock and recreate the design. I found the above image, cleaned it up a bit, added some text with a basic font to maintain the old style theme. I went with a bold sans-serif and some classic script for the business name. In the future I’d like to maybe add an additional font and make the business name more pronounced. The customer however loved it and that’s really all that matters.

So, that’s what I’ve been working on over here at New Aeon Design. This month, expect some posts about blogging and blog design. I plan to change up a bunch of stuff on the Blogger blogs, and I’d also like to talk a little about WordPress. You can also look forward to some social networking posts, tips, tricks, and what I’ve discovered.

With that said, thanks for checking out my blog portfolio, thanks for reading, and thanks to everyone following members, rss, Tumblr, Twitter, Facebook (Just started nobody following yet, you could be the first !), Pinterest, and G+. Feel free to comment and ttys ! SEE YA !

Created A New Bitcoin Blog

As some of you have probably noticed, I recently took an interest in Bitcoin. I was looking for an alternative form of payment for the website and thought I would give it a try. I’ve learned a lot and have become fascinated by crypto currency. The good news is if your not into Bitcoin, I probably wont be posting about it here anymore. I’m sure there will be a mention from time to time but for the most part I will only be posting about the crypto currency here. If your into Bitcoin and bitcoin related things check it out !

What you do when you overwrite a website with an older version.

So last night I’m up working on stuff till about 6 a.m. Around 4 in the morning I decide I’m going to tweak my Tumblr blog real quick. I have a special blog on there that I use as a test lab. I make configurations, add stuff, tweak and when every thing looks A O.K. I copy and paste the code into my other blogs that are using the same theme.

So I tweak the theme a bit, I’m happy, I copy the code and paste it into my other blogs not realizing that there were unsaved changes from a previous edit. This was a couple hours work at least, and in a moment of acute stupidity that only took a couple seconds to perpetrate , I overwrote all the changes I had made at an earlier date. To add insult to injury, I couldn’t even find the graphics I had used in my backup. My heart sunk, I was tired, feeling really stupid, and couldn’t believe what I had just done.

Frantically I scoured through the directories on my hard drive, in hopes that I could find the backup files to no avail. In a state of panic I calmed myself and said out loud to no one in particular “o.k. stupid think !” Then it dawned on me, in my moment of desperation I recalled someone talking about a program called time machine or something like that, that stores cached copies of websites on there servers. You just type in the url of the site you want to see, and it pulls up its last cached version of the website. I did a search engine search and low and behold discovered http://www.cachedpages.com/.

I quickly typed in my url and clicked on the Google cache button. To my amazement there was my old site,exactly as I had designed it before my momentary lapse in judgement. The graphics, the new search box, the links, the Twitter widget, the hours of work I had done on the sidebar were all there ! I right clicked on the header image and saved to where I thought the back up file was. I then right clicked on the page again and clicked “view page source” and copied all the code I had overwrote. At last, my world made sense again ! There truly is a God and I gave thanks ! Cachedpages.com saved my REAR and if this ever happens to you, try this because it worked great for me.

Once I got my code and graphics the problems were fixed in under 10 minutes. Words can’t describe how relieved I was. The moral of this story is to always keep backups. I usually do and if this had been a clients page I’m sure I would of known exactly where they were. I tend to be more careful with other peoples stuff, than my own. Plus my Tumblr blogs are just a hobby and somewhere to play when I’m relaxing. I usually keep backups of my backups which go back two changes. So I have the original on the server, a copy on my hard drive, and a copy of the old copy named sitename.bak before changes were made. Using this system, if something goes wrong, 99.9 % of the time it’s completely recoverable.

With that said keep backups, but if the worst should happen check out cachedpages.com or a similar site as a last resort. It really saved my ass !

Twitter Lists Public vs Private

O.K. I think this is going to be the last post on Twitter for a little while. However, I think a few words are in order about creating Public vs Private lists. If you want to learn more about creating lists see my last post here.

So we’re creating some lists and now we have to decide are the lists going to be public or private. Here are some things to consider when making your choice.

Public list.

  • Most people appreciate being added to a public list.
  • Great for exposure as other people can subscribe to the list.
  • As others subscribe it’s a great way to network and make new contacts with your fellow industry peers.

Private list.

  • Good way to keep an eye on competitors and check in on them once in awhile.
  • Maybe you want to protect your content source from others. Ie: vendors, sub contractors, content creators you use, etc., etc.,
  • It may be sensitive information you don’t want to share. Ie: Political or religious groups you follow, material of an adult nature, people who post off color jokes, etc., etc.,

These are just a few things to think about when deciding whether a list should be public or private. Another consideration to private lists is maybe setting up a second account for things you may not want to share with your followers, potential sales leads, and clients.

What ever you decide, I’m sure you can agree that lists are a great way to organize your content, add value to your twitter account, create additional exposure for you, and give prospects another good reason to follow you.