Website workshop with Workman Arts

Taught the first of two workshops to members of Workman Arts tonight – “Artists and Websites”.

What a motivated group of people, and all with varying web presences and a great sense of humour as I tumbled through website basics. It’s always a lot of sudden information for people but when I talked about how most popular blog platforms will allow you to email pictures and text and it will post for you, eyes lit up. That was satisfying – my aim is always to allow artists to post content right with minimal resistance and everyone knows how to email. I even prepared a gallery of photos and emailed it to posterous@posterous.com to show them how easy it was to instantly put up a clean and quick website and of course.. it failed. Thanks Posterous. Even opening an account and clicking on the confirmation link did not stop my repeated attempts to create and post to posterous. Oh well.

Emailing to WordPress works well though, though last time I tried Tumblr email it was spotty at best.

Main points covered were –

  1. You can register a domain name without having to purchase a hosting plan at the same time.
  2. “Blog” is a dirty word for very good CMS websites for artists.
  3. Stick with JPGs, PNGs and don’t mess with GIFs and certainly not Flash.
  4. You can add your own domain name to some popular, free blog platforms.
  5. Text is best but just post whatever and whenever you want and don’t worry about it.
  6. How a website is hosted on a webserver.
  7. Having an artist website on tumblr, posterous (fail), twitter, facebook, wordpress, blogger/blogspot or myspace.
  8. The different browsers – avoid Internet Explorer, go with Firefox, Chrome or Safari.
  9. Don’t worry about social media if you are not into it – google just knows.
  10. Many word processor programs can save documents as HTML … badly but you can upload it to web hosting space you already have if you really want to.
  11. Audio posts are easy on most popular blog platforms.
  12. You can choose different templates.
  13. Analytics and designing for a user’s behavior.

Posterous should be working ... but isn't. Weeeee!

(Thanks for the fab pics, Alison)

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