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web design

The Merry Caper

I’m so excited to announce a project that’s been in the works for the past few months: The Merry Caper! It’s the brand-spanking new blog of one of my best friends (and web twin!), Isabel, and I had the honor of designing her online comeback!

Visit The Merry Caper now!

Visit The Merry Caper now!

This layout was an absolute joy to create. Early in the summer she revealed that she wanted to get back into blogging, and asked if I could design it! She pretty much allowed me free reign, which can actually be quite daunting. Often the pressure of guidelines and limits can be very helpful! However, it was amazing how as we were bouncing ideas back and forth, we were actually operating on the same aesthetic wavelength! She mentioned orange and turquoise, I was thinking coral and turquoise! I asked how she felt about watercolors, she told me she was wanted light, airy, and bright!

Like I said, we’re web twins.

I’m very proud of this layout, especially the details. There’s a bit of jQuery, shortcut icons, and a few other surprises! My screenshot preview doesn’t do them justice, so you need to see them for yourself! Go!

site, web design

Black, white, and basics. New layout!

My apologies, it’s been so long!

As you may have noticed, I’ve taken some time off; I’ve been wondering and doubting- as I’m wont to do- about what I’ve been doing with my digital space. Questions like, “What do I have to say or offer?”, “What am I saying?”, “What voice have I been conveying?”, and “Why can’t I ever take a picture the way I imagine it in my head?! *rageface*” have been swirling around my head; alas, even with all that time away, I don’t think I’m much closer to an answer than I was before. However, what was clear, was the fact that I needed to do something, even if that meant doing anything.

So naturally, like the need for a new haircut or outfit, I went to working on a new layout. Although I didn’t intend that this happen, this version, with it’s excessive black and white, addresses my need for a clean slate.

While there are a few coding issues that need to be fixed, I’m proud to say that this new layout is the first where I’ve really coded it all by my lonesome! No heavily-modified-TwentyEleven here!

announcements, miscellany, philobabble, site, web design

Blog Birthday #1.

I hope all of my festive fellow Americans had a fun and safe fourth of July!

Well, as you can tell from the title, it’s Glass Lens, Gold Key‘s first birthday! I cannot believe that it’s been a year since I started this. For all intents and purposes, I really did make this on a whim; it was barely two months from the time I decided to return to writing on a non-community blog (in May) to when I got the first post up. There were many muddled and anxious thoughts before, after, and during that time; while there was much excitement, there was also a lot of doubt.

There was a specific way that I wanted to proceed, a way that required a bit of money and a hell of a lot of time. Because this wasn’t my first time blogging– I used to code layouts in notepad using copious amounts (okay, maybe “unnecessary” is a better term?) of tables and/or frames, and type posts up and upload via FTP before there was an easy-to-use CMS– I knew what I wanted and was impatient to go slowly. But I was wary of my own intentions and determination. I didn’t want it to waste away, as my site had before, and I was also worried that I simply didn’t have anything interesting to write about. However, the latter is only true if one isn’t honest or enthusiastic, and I knew that I absolutely missed creating, designing, and sharing my own perspective. So nostalgia won out, but not without genuine excitement, and I went about it the way I had before.

I’m so thankful that I did. I feel better having written, designed, and created something that I can share with others.

In the past year of working on Glass Lens, Gold Key I’ve learned quite a bit; on both technical and personal terms.

In terms of design, I’ve still got a lot to learn, as well as re-learn. I’m currently using a heavily modified version of a theme, but the CSS isn’t as daunting as it was before. In the past year, I’ve cycled through the following layouts:

Glass Lens, Gold Key 1.0. Text heavy!

2.0 A circle! Getting there.

Version 3.5- Now with pictures! Finally.

As I mentioned earlier, I basically began when the thought hit me and thus spent no time considering the layout, or photographing the material that I wanted to represent the ethos of this blog. What’s funny about this is that it was completely antithetical to my previous method of making a layout first and getting to really flesh out the content later (although seeing the mockup of a “finished product” does help!). There’s so much more that I want to do, but building it up gradually doesn’t bother as much as it used to (of course, this is only the case for my work; if it were for someone else, it wouldn’t be as piecemeal).

I’ve also become a better writer, in the sense that I’ve become more comfortable with “publishing” it– allowing others to read my words. Or rather, I suppose I should say that I’m getting better with writing; I’m slowly getting through the self-deprecation that comes from apprehension. I’m an anxious person so my head goes a mile a minute down worrysome paths and perfectionist doubts, but, like the many maxims on regret have urged, it’s been better to do something as best I can rather than allowing an idea to dissipate before I think it’s “ready” or not.

It’s about improving. Growing. Evolving.

Here are some of my favorite posts of the past year: Continue Reading

announcements, miscellany, site, web design

It’s here! Sorta. A sneak peek of sorts.

As you can glean from the URL, this blog is part of something I’ve established as Often Lions. Almost a year of having claimed the domain, I’ve finally filled the space with some substance, primarily visual.

So what is it, or more appropriately, what will it be, exactly? Well, it’s a surprise. Mostly for you and even somewhat for me; if there’s one thing that I’ve learned, it’s that the most important thing is just to start. Every step counts, every step moves you forward. Stagnation kills creativity.

While its form may appear amorphous right now, the heart of Often Lions is laid bare. Its mission statement/ethos/philosophy or what-have-you is as follows:

For those of us who lie awake at night dreaming of fantastical places and the royals and the rogues. Hostile seas and cunning thieves. Bards who sing the sighs of the bright-eyed. Leather and lace, yet binary ways. Time traveling and the unraveling towards the truth.

Love & laugh– that’s the only catch.

As for the dialogue from Romeo & Juliet on the front page, as the first post?

Dreamers often lie… while they do dream things true.

Getting excited, lots of work ahead. Miles to go.

web design

BourbonSugarMint.com

My lovely friend Isabel relaunched her blog Bourbon, Sugar & Mint with a new layout at the start of the month, and I’m quite proud to say that I had a hand in its design! It was such an exciting challenge to work on a layout for someone else; Isabel pretty much gave me free reign, and it was so much fun collaborating on ideas for it!

As you can see from my projects (this, Muse Kitsch), my color palette tends to lean toward brights, bolds, and reds, so getting to work within the calmer, cooler colors of blue and green was different. In retrospect, it definitely helped me relax while I was wracking my brain for ideas and coding issues!

Isabel was one of the first friends I made when I started blogging, and it’s so surreal to think that it’s been ten years since that happened. I’m so grateful for our friendship and to her for trusting me enough to create something like this! Thank you Isabel! <3 Visit Bourbon, Sugar & Mint!