I am excited to unveil – danielclasingeventing.com!

Every year a big horse show called the Kentucky Rolex airs top riders worldwide competing in dressage, stadium jumping and cross country jumping in the hopes of finishing the gruesome 3-day event. I watch every year and have been in awe ever since the first time I watched it on prime time TV.

Needless to say, I am honored to have developed this site for Daniel Clasing, a 4 star Kentucky Rolex competitor. Using an awesome theme Attitude Pro, I added and tweaked and pushed the site to be unique and custom for the look, feel and functionality needed.

Please visit the site to get the full experience: danielclasingeventing.com

Jim McDonald Horsemanship website design and facebook content

I took on a new freelance project combining my hobby and work life – a website for horse training!! The goal for the site was to design a simply website, revamp the logo and have the site be editable by the client…so the choice was easy. I went with WordPress, naturally, and edited a theme to suit my client’s needs, added some plugins to beef up the site and SEO and well lots of other cool stuff 😉

I also worked on a marketing and website/social media content plan to get the site more visible and enable cross sharing and a unified brand across all web and social media outlets the client used.

So without further delay:

visit the site for yourself: jimmcdonaldhorsemanship.com

 

 

Design matters!

I know it has been far too long since my last blog! My excuse is I have been working like a dog….and loving it! I really should be better about posting updates because boy have I a lot to share!!

Most importantly I want to share this article from AIGA:

http://www.aiga.org/nows-our-time/

I really loved this article by Susana Rodríguez de Tembleque, SYPartners because one of the most common reactions when I tell people my profession is an uncomfortable, not-sure-what-to-say smile and “oh…that’s nice!”

This article not only is visually appealing but it touches on the fact that, as designers, we do play in part in visuals we see almost everywhere and in every day life. We do have an impact and non design people are starting to actually see it! Let’s keep up the great work fellow designers….not that I can take a whole lot of credit, but us as a unit and collectively certainly can!

2012 Design / Creative Surveys from AIGA

http://designsalaries.aiga.org/

I know I have posted about this topic before, but it is how we make a living and therefore really important. I check often for the going rates so I do not undercut myself and get paid what I deserve based on others with my same skill levels.

It is never a bad idea to evaluate your skill level but you must be honest with yourself and with your employer. We are certainly in an economy where we tend to get the short end of the stick, but that does not mean you shouldn’t be valued!

 

Word press static pages!!

Ok bloggers!! So if any of you have been following me, I am sure you have noticed that my website has been under construction for the better part of a year…I know, I know!! BUT in my defense I pick up a project for someone or work gets totally busy and then I get sidetracked…etc (I am sure you see where this is going).

Well without further ado, I am forcing myself to do it once and for all so my professional design portfolio is back up and running! So I am so totally in love with wordpress and decided to experiment and use it for my own site so it led me down the path of static pages for my landing page and not my blog…

How to make a static home page using wordpress

^So that is a nifty link to a video that is clear, to the point (unlike my blogs) and should help any of you out trying to achieve the same thing! Happy coding!


Unique social media icons…taking them and your website to the next level!

With websites, any little trick you have goes a long way to make it stand out and fit into the style you worked so hard to design. We all know as designers that web design can be limiting based on coding and the ever changing languages the web world throws at us.

Well stress no more because I found this handy little link: http://www.webdesignerdepot.com/2010/10/ultimate-collection-of-social-media-icons/

^ that right there is an AWESOME resource to social media icons to fit almost any style site…no more cookie cutter icons provided from the social media site!! Now you can use these on your website to really take it to the next level.

 

Web design and logo inspiration…even some other cool resources!

http://coolhomepages.com/

I just got done browsing through the above site and just had to share! It provides awesome web design inspiration as well as logo design inspiration…and not only does it give you a thumbnail but a direct link so you can test and see the live site in action.

Not to mention there are freebies (which i pulled some icons from!!) and resources to find web designers, purchase a template and, my personal favorite, a side by side comparison of sites with CMS support and builders (That is here: http://coolhomepages.com/Best-CMS-Website-Builders.html)

Hope you can find it as helpful as I did! I am definitely bookmarking this into my favorites.

 

 

Your career as a designer…and what school didnt teach you

http://www.graphicdesignblender.com/critical-lessons-your-design-professors-never-taught-you

^ That above article contains some great advice and tidbits from one designer to another.

My take: We all graduate with our degree, enthused and hungry to get into our first job and start being creative like we were with all of our assignments in school, only to be severely disappointed and completely caught off guard–The fact is, its just not what we were prepared for.

Sometimes we get lucky and get one, maybe two professors that do their best to give us some real world knowledge…even their attempts pale in comparison to when you get thrown into the deep end and told to swim…or sink.

But as designers we are creative by nature (hopefully!) and innovative right? We easily can think outside the box and adapt. Point being, do not let it get you down if you feel lost at first. Take control, build up your confidence and let go of some of those “Stereotypes” and things you heard about in school and create your experience…we are creators after all!!

logo resource part2 – sports edition

Continuing on my last post, I had a colleague recommend a great site for referencing all sports logos under the sun. This site has everything from Major league to college sports logos, to minor league and teams you never knew existed.

Here is the link: SportsLogos.net

Montgomery Biscuits Logo - A cartoon biscuit next to a gold M with a navy outlineMy personal favorite; the Montgomery biscuits…it just puts a smile on my face. Nothing says Sports like a buttermilk biscuit with a butter tongue!!