6/14/12

A fun share

I couldn't agree more with this sentiment...



Digital Interview with Jessica Vellenga


Name:  Jessica Vellenga
Blog Title:  N/A
Blog URL: 
http://jessicavellenga.com/?cat=1
Subject of Blog:  art, craft, fashion, design


1) What is your blog about?
  My art and fashion design projects, life as a cultural worker in the North.

2) Why did you choose to blog about this?
  Mainly to keep track of my projects, as an art portfolio and to update family and friends Outside as to what' I'm creating. 

3) What got you into blogging, or, what made you start blogging?
  I started blogging when I moved to Whitehorse as a way to connect with family and friends.

4) What have you learned thus far?
  It takes time and effort to keep a consistent blog.

5) Is there something unique about living in the north and blogging?
  A great way to connect with others and share our northern stories.

6) Who do you think you're writing to/posting to, when you write your blog? 
Family, friends, and anyone interested in my art/design practice.

7) What would be the ultimate compliment that someone could give you after they read your blog?
  I'm not sure.

8) What are your recommendations to new bloggers? 
Try to post consistently.

9) What does the future have in store for you? 
I'm working on a huge community art project to knit a cozy for an airplane this summer. Check out
Yarn Bomb Yukon.  I'll continue to produce my accessory line and I am working toward designing and producing a clothing and lingerie line. 

Thanks Jessica for taking the time to chat with us digitally. BTW Keep me posted on your clothing and lingerie lines! ;-)

6/13/12

Blog Post Planning: 5 Resources for Blog Writers.

In the spirit of the Blog Carnival, I have found that I am anal about my organization, which frustrates me to no end when-like the first week of the carnival-I lose my scheduler. All hell breaks loose when I lose track of what I'm doing.

I have compiled 5 resources that I have literally stumbled, digitally, upon recently. This blog post literally wrote itself!

1) Believe it or not, Pinterest is one of my favourite places to go when I'm looking for ideas, either for blogging or a short story. Each pin has it's own story and creative potential. Also, when I find something really interesting, I've created a board on my Pinterest Account called: Blog Writing, and then pin things there in case I ever run out of ideas. It's also a great way to keep track of things without losing them.


2) Printable Blog Planner HERE; while it is mediocre for an OCD like me, I find it's a great jumping off point for designing your own forms to use. Plus, I'm looking into trademarking some of the supplies and tools I use since they are super popular among friends. If you're a DIY'er like me, you'll see the innate value of some form of planner like this. But if you often create your own forms, you'll know that most of the time you can articulate what you need on a print-based tool, but making it look nice and organized, is a very different thing. I recommend a Blog Planner of any sort to all bloggers.


3) Workflowy.com is now a begrudging favourite. I love making lists of what to do and what not to do. I find that if I had a tablet such as an iPad, then I'd probably use this a lot more. But, I can keep this window open and make lists I want to make. It's really great for writing ideas. Problem? Not really anything. I've found it hard to figure out how to organize anything on it. I find it's like a word document online that only lets you input items in bullet point. Great for posting you writing ideas in lieu of a notepad-you know, the one I keep at home safe and sound. For those who are newly reading my blog, I posted about it HERE.


4) Celtx is a website that operates like a cloud but allows you to download its program to any device. It's great, I began using it when I started writing. My little brother introduced me to it and I love it. It's geared towards screen and script writers, but it's great for organizing projects that involve research. It acts like an online, or desktop, filing system! However, it has adapted a lot in the few years that I started using it. It now has a "novel" set up option, etc. It's all about the projects with this program! Also, there are two free options, the online hosting and the desktop free program.


5) Open Atrium is a program that you download. I haven't downloaded it yet because the internet I've been hooked up to is quite slow. But here's the schpiel from the website: "Open Atrium is an open source platform designed specifically to make great teams communicate better. An intranet in a box with: a blog, a wiki, a calendar, a to do list, a shoutbox, and a dashboard to manage it all. Let’s not forget that it’s also completely customizable."

If you have an opinion on any of these tools, please let me know.

Digital Interview with Kara Went

Name:  Kara Went
Blog Title:  The Adventures of Matt, Kara, Hunter and Cavan in Faro, Yukon
Blog URL:  http://wenttofaro.blogspot.com
Subject of Blog: Family life in the Yukon


1) What is your blog about?
  My blog is about anything and everything
that our family does (crazy things our children do, my crafting, weight
loss surgery, life in Faro).  I have never kept a journal or baby books,
but I have been blogging for nearly six years and it is a great way to
keep track of our lives.  I have my blog printed out each year into a
book for us to keep.

2) Why did you choose to blog about this? 
I originally started blogging
when we lived in Kugluktuk, Nunavut and wanted to share what life was
like in the Arctic.  But as we had kids the focus of the blog changed.

3) What got you into blogging, or, what made you start blogging?
  It
started with reading a few blogs from other folks living in Nunavut and
found it a rather addicting hobby!

4) What have you learned thus far? 
That it is a fantastic way to make
connections with people!  When we decided to move south to the Yukon,
the first thing I did was start reading blogs written by Yukoners.
Those blogs give a much better idea about what life is really like here.

5) Is there something unique about living in the north and blogging?

Blogging in the north is fantastic!  You actually run into people that
write blogs you read or you get stopped by someone on the street who
reads your own blog.  It definitely has the feeling of community!

6) Who do you think you're writing to/posting to, when you write your
blog?
  Usually family and friends, but I get between 150 and 200 readers
whenever I post, so I know a lot of strangers read too!

7) What would be the ultimate compliment that someone could give you
after they read your blog? 
That it made them laugh!

8) What are your recommendations to new bloggers? 
Blog often!

9) What does the future have in store for you?
  Hopefully more blogging
about my crafting and weight loss!

6/12/12

Digital Interview with Amber Church



Name: Amber Church
Blog Title: The Craft Project
Blog URL: www.craftchick.wordpress.com
Subject of Blog: My journey as an artist and designer

 1) What got you into blogging, or, what made you start blogging?


I started my blog because I was trying to get myself to focus a bit.  I am interested in everything - which is really fun - but I found it was also causing me to have many half-finished projects lying around.  I'd start knitting a scarf and half way through the process would find myself with an unquenchable desire to can 12 different rhubarb recipes and create a new painting for example.  When the Craft Project started I had a humble goal of starting and finishing one project a week.  I had some more private goals with the blog as well - I hoped that it would help me start to realize my dreams of becoming a writer and artist. 

The blog has come a long way from those humble beginnings.  I sometimes joke that it now documents my "journey to become a DIY princess" but in reality it has become a bit of a digital portfolio - a place where I can share my art, theatre, dance and design work in a more personal way.  I can share the inspirations, hi-jinxes and back stories that go with my work while supporting others to follow their dreams and highlighting some of the fantastic work of others in my community. 

The blog keeps me productive - I feel accountable to the audience I've built so I'm always pushing myself to create more art or find another project.  The blog has also connected me with many opportunities, which in turn feed the blog. It's like a very joyful viscous cycle.

2) What have you learned thus far?

Pictures are worth a thousand words.  I know people say it all the time, but it's very true and therefore bears repeating.  The blogosphere is massive and there is so much out there to explore that I feel like it gives consumers of the digital age a bit of A.D.D. - imagery helps us focus, it provides a faster way to get an overall sense of the blog post, it draws us in, it provides a tool to complement our story telling...plus, if it's done right, it's beautiful and brings joy.  I'm blessed to be married to a professional photographer, and to have several other professional photographers as friends, which helps to keep the image quality high on my blog.

I've also learned to focus on quality over quantity.  For the first half of 2011 I challenged myself to blog every single day - and I did for about a period of 6 months.  The reality was though that the quality of each individual post suffered - most artists don't have something new every single day year-in, year-out without completely burning themselves out creatively and mentally - and the blogging began to feel like a chore instead of something fun.  So I scaled back the number of posts I publish - I no longer hold myself to any regular schedule.  Instead when I have something worthwhile to write about (and have a fabulous set of images to go with it) I then put together a post.  It keeps me much happier and I feel much better about the quality of material being produced.

3) Is there something unique about living in the north and blogging?

Although my readership comes from around the world, I find being a blogger from Whitehorse provides me with a fabulous opportunity to connect in real life with my local audience.  Blogging is so much about the interactions with the audience - building connections and friendships with them - that it's really special to actually know your readers in the real-world.

I also find that the connections in my work to the North that I highlight in my blog really fascinate non-Northerners.  For example I was recently honoured by having my artwork featured on the cover of the Northwestel phone directory.  The piece that was chosen featured the Chilkoot Trail and so I needed to explain the Trail's significance in a blog post for the portion of my audience who doesn't call the Yukon home.  They seemed really excited to learn about it.  Also anytime there's a photo of me in my can can skirt they get excited!

4) What are your recommendations to new bloggers?
Be authentic.  Speak with your own voice through your blog - people respond to an authentic voice.

5) What does the future have in store for you?
 

I don't know yet - ask me tomorrow!

6/11/12

Digital Interview With: Dave Rogers

Name: Dave Rogers
Blog Title: What He Said
Blog URL: http://whathesaid.ca/ 



1) What is your blog about?

Oh, my blog is about 9 megabytes-worth of database files. Beyond that,
it's not about much of anything really. I suppose my blog is mostly a
brain de-cluttering device, since once I write down a thought, it no
longer orbits the rim of my noggin.

2) Why did you choose to blog about this?

I don't think I had much choice but to blog about my thoughts. That
statement fits particularly well with my deterministic view of the
universe.

3) What got you into blogging, or, what made you start blogging?

Initially, I just wanted to write about the technology that I was
working with. I couldn't sustain that for very long though, so moved
on to other subjects.

4) What have you learned thus far?

People will only read posts if you write them. And sometimes not even then.

 5) Is there something unique about living in the north and blogging?

It's not nearly as unique as folks from Outside might imagine. But
don't spoil it for them. They seem comforted by their quaint notions
of tundra and igloos.

6) Who do you think you're writing to/posting to, when you write your blog?

My future self: he gets all the inside references and laughs
uproariously at the jokes. He does seem to nitpick over the grammar
and spelling mistakes a lot though.

7) What would be the ultimate compliment that someone could give you after they read your blog?
 

A record in Google Analytics showing that they stayed on the site and
read through earlier postings.

8) What are your recommendations to new bloggers?

Keep it short and write frequently about what really interests you.
There are enough monkeys on the internet that a few will be enthralled
by your narrow and esoteric interests, whatever they be.

9) What does the future have in store for you?
 

An actual family. Complete with a bouncing baby boy expected any
minute now. Who'd a thunk it?


Thanks Dave for participating and for your time. Congrats on the coming baby boy!


Again, another participant! Wowee!

Sarah Niman of Cure For Boredom

Take a look around, her title background has me hungry through!

Another Participant!

Jessica Vellenga of  JESSICA VELLENGA: handmade art, craft, clothing and more…


Please welcome her by visiting her blog!