Blog Elements to include for a WordPress artist blog
So why have a blog on your website? Well I never wanted one myself to begin with but then I read this article about why artists should write about their work by Chris Tyrell for Opus Art Supplies. It makes a lot of sense that people who have your art hanging in their home of office want something intelligent to say about their investment.
If you do want to write about your work a blog is a great place to do this. You can expand and comment on a few pieces of work and talk about the process or the inspiration behind it. Using the blogging format to do this leaves your static pages and portfolio clean and uncluttered. (more…)
What pages do you need on an artist website?
The list at the bottom of this page is a large list of the type of pages you may want to include on an artist website. It is not necessary to use them all as you may not have a list of reviews or want to show images of your studio. At the very least consider using the four following pages as a minimum.
The most important thing that needs to be on your site is your name. As an artist your name is your brand, use it. That said… (more…)
What is the difference between a free blog and self hosted blog?
The Free Blog
A Free Blog is hosted by a 3rd party such as Google’s Blogger or WordPress.com. Other examples of 3rd party blogs are Live Journal and Typepad.
With a free blog everything is taken care of for you. You can create a site without having to bother installing the blog platform or plugins, modifying the theme, paying for web hosting or a domain name. Basically they provide you a free space for your site on their site. But you do not own your site.
With a free blog you get automatic updates and can be assured that the update process is virtually flawless. The blog platform also supplies you with a number of widgets or gadgets that you can use to add functionality to your blog site and a choice between a 100 plus themes or more.
Once you get through the seemingly effortless task of setting up your blog you will have to learn some of the basic processes which are relatively easy. Then just start publishing your content.
The pro/con list below has been compiled using this artists experience creating a sample blog in blogger.com and wordpress.com. I didn’t try Typepad because they require a monthly fee and Live Journal grayed out the screen and made me wait for a video advertisement to load when I tried to “explore” it so left. (more…)
What is a Blog and how is it different than a website?
Blogs are a type of website, everything on the internet is a website in one form or another. Static websites are built using programs like Dreamweaver on your local computer and then uploaded to your hosting sites server. Blogs on the other hand are built on server side applications where non-experts can manage their own websites on line.
With programs like Dreamweaver you need to know how to use programming code like HTML (hypertext markup language) or CSS (cascading style sheets). If you want more website definitions and terms please read my article “Website Terms”. No so with a blog. Using anyone of the blogging platforms all you have to do is enter your content into the online editor, upload and image or two, even create a gallery of images and publish.
Here’s a little known secret; you can also use some blogs as a CMS (Content Management System); basically a static website without a blog. A content management system is a collection of tools and scripts designed to allow the creation, modification, organization and removal of information from a website.
Let’s face it not everyone wants to blog. I know this sounds counter intuitive but you don’t have to be a blogger to use a blog for a website. But later if you do decide you want to blog you will be all set up to do so.
Note that this site is built using WordPress.org. I use WordPress when building artist sites with or without a blog.
The navigation at the top of this page is for all the static pages of the site and the sidebar to the left is the navigation of all the blog categories and content.
- A TYPE of website
- Built in chronological order typically with the newest content at the top of the page
- Is a type of CMS (content management system). Using a CMS the user is not required to have any HTML or coding knowledge to get started
- Blogs get indexed quickly by search engines because of the dynamic content.
- Optimizing your site for the search engines is far easier with a blog.
- It is much cheaper to set up a blog and maintain the site than it is for a HTML website as you don’t need to know code or hire a web designer.
- Bloggers are building relationships with their readers
Blogs and websites (static pages) go hand in hand
- On the blog you can expand and comment on the content of your static pages
- This leaves your static pages such as your portfolio images clean and uncluttered
- Some blogs can have static pages
All too often when an artist decides to build a website they will either hire a designer or they know a friend or relative that can do it for them. The site is great for the first year or two but then it needs updating. So rather than wait for your friend to find the time or go out and get quotes from a new designer because yours has moved on why not just do it yourself.
There are 2 types of blogs: free and self hosted and I will compare them in the next post.
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When Chris W. Carson, Executive Director of Visual Arts Alberta Association, sent out the request for guest bloggers for the VAAA site I thought what a great idea and what a perfect platform to build a community of like minded individuals.
That’s really what blogging is all about and is what I will talk about amoung other web related things. I am going to provide VAAA readers with the tools they need to build a strong online presence. Blogging is part of that but by no means is it the “be all” or the “end all” of a web existence.
The following four articles will focus on:
Look for me under Professional Development
First article “Blog Vs Website”.
Who is Artbiz?
First and foremost Kim Bruce is a visual artist. But she also runs Artbiz: the business of art where she creates WordPress websites for artists. Kim works out of her office/studio located in the foothills of Alberta just outside of Calgary.
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