New Illustration Blog

Sun 1/20/2008

A few weeks ago, Gabe told me about Google Analytics, which he had once used back in Portland, while working at Ecotrust. It is pretty awesome. You embed a small piece of code onto a webpage and then Google uses that to track all kinds of information about that page. How many hits you are getting, how people are coming to the site, where people are clicking on the page, etc. etc. etc. It spits out all of this data into a bunch of charts and graphs and maps. It is right up my alley.

So I set it up on this site, and my illustration portfolio site. And after a few days I start getting these "reports" back, and suddenly I'm able to REALLY see what is happening on these sites. It was all pretty much what I expected... except for my illustration site, which was not getting ANY traffic.

AT ALL. Seriously. Like, ZERO hits. Per week.

I understand, there is not really a lot "going on" over on that site. It's a fairly static collection of my illustration work, which I only update once each season. And even then, it's usually only a few new illustrations.

The PROBLEM with that however, is that I BUILT that site to help me get new illustration assignments! So I needed to drive some more traffic to the site. Also, since I'm not quite clever enough to build a database to keep track of all the images on there, I needed to come up with a way to archive the images, so they can be "permalinked."

SO, this is all to say that I spent an insane amount of time in front of my computer this week, building a new Illustration Blog and dumping all of the images from my portfolio site into my ever-expanding Flickr Account.

The blog is good, because it gives art directors (and any one else who is interested) a simple place to keep track of new projects and whatever I'm working on. It will be updated at least once a week (even if I need to draw something just to stick in there!) You know, it's got RSS and all that. (ALSO, I won't have to post so much "professional" stuff in THIS blog!)

And then Flickr allows a wider range of people to see (and comment on) my illustrations, plus each one now links back to the illustration site. AND I can link all of the images in the portfolio back to Flickr, for archiving/permalink purposes.

(Is this complicated enough for everyone? The internet! GLAGGGH! )

Ironically, after doing all this work, I found out on Friday that I am going to be teaching not one, but TWO classes at BMCC this semester. So now I'm almost scared that all of this self-promotional effort will WORK, and I'll have illustration gigs to juggle on top of teaching and Basewood!

Ah well, it's good to be busy, right? RIGHT??? Right...

5 comments on this entry

Actually, I had just started using google analytics too. I was about to send you an e-mail about it, but you found it already...

Anyway, my site gets like one hit a day, mostly from my girlfriend, bless her heart.

It would probably help if I uploaded new things though.

Ajani Jan20

Shawn Crystal was telling me about that tracking thing this week. I'm almost scared to look. I'll check out the illustration blog!

Chris S. Jan20

Alec --

Thanks for the Google tip. That's worth checking out.

Yeah, blogs proliferate like crazy once you get going on them!

I was actually wondering why your blog doesn't have RSS... ?

Marek Jan22

Marek- It does have RSS!

It's that little orange broadcast icon thing at the bottom of every page... Maybe I should put this somewhere more conspicuous!

Alec Jan22

Ah! Oops. I guess I just didn't see it. I was looking up near the top, and on that lil' RSS button on the browser (which does NOT light up, even now!).

Thanks for the tip. I only wish mail-order subscriptions were so easy.

Marek Jan23

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