Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Taking a picture using a cell phone and camera simultaneously

I've been looking for a way to simplify the process of taking a fairly good photo and then sharing it on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and even here on this blog. 

I'm not really happy with the quality of photos my cell phone takes and I thought maybe if I could take a picture with the camera, then transfer it to the cell phone I could get a better quality image so I could continue to share on the social media sites without having to connect the camera to my computer, upload the images, etc. 

I wanted to have better photos and save time by reducing the number of clicks....

After some research, I read that my little point-and-shoot had Wi-Fi capabilities and could connect to my Android phone,

Ta Da - I thought - that would definitely make it easier to share on the social media sites. Sounded just like what I was looking for! 

So tonight I found the instructions on-line and proceeded to experiment. 

I installed the "Playmemories" app on my cell phone. 
After several attempts I was finally able to connect the cell phone and camera via Wi-Fi. 

Was it easier? 
Nope...

To take the picture below, I had to:
  1. Turn on the camera
  2. Open Wi-Fi on the phone
  3. Open the PlayMemories app on the cell phone
  4. Select Menu on the Camera
  5. Find the Wi-Fi on the camera and scan so it found the phone 
  6. Once it connected the Play Memories app started to display whatever I was pointing the camera at although the camera did not display the same thing
  7. I used one hand to point the camera at the hand lettering project I'm working on
  8. I used my other hand to click button on the PlayMemories app to snap the picture. 
  9. I could then use my cell phone to share the image with Facebook, etc. 
This was the image I took using this method....


This was the image I took using just the phone....


I don't see a big improvement for all the work you have to do....

After going through this process I'm not sure what the benefit is using the camera and cell phone together? Maybe I'm missing something?

Thanks for stopping by!
JD





Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Branding for Business....


As I've mentioned before I have been reading tons of articles and books on building a small business - because I have a dream to have a successful one soon - anyway, one of the topics I've been studying is about "branding".

When I think of "branding" the first thought that popped in my head was about cowboys branding cattle. Not that I've ever seen a cowboy taking a hot poker and scalding a cow's backside with the home ranch's logo - which basically is a symbol to show who that cow belongs to. (please note that I've not seen the act of branding cow's in person....my experience is limited to old cowboy shows on television.)

Well, based on what I've read, "branding" your business is sort of like branding the cow. All of your social media sites, stores, business cards, etc. should have the same look and feel - colors, logo, etc.
I also believe that those things - logos, colors, etc. - should reflect your personality.

For me, I like color. I also like the idea of circles because to me they are continuous and yet complete. I also like the idea of them having a look like they are freely floating and expanding - being flexible.
I like feminine letters and colors - therefore the font and color of the company name.

I've started updating our social media sites and so far I've added a new banner to this blog, the Etsy shop, and the following profile image to Pinterest, and Twitter.




There is still a lot to do - such as design new business cards, figure out how to use Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest, plus build up the shop's inventory.

What is your concept of branding? Do you have a consistent look and feel across your social media sites? I would love to see some real world examples so please leave a comment with your URL. 

Thanks so much for stopping by!
JD


Sunday, July 6, 2014

Social Media Marketing Novice...


As you may have read I've opened an Etsy store in the hopes of selling some of my handmade cards.

So far, as of today, I have a whopping 4 cards in the shop with the dream of adding more and more over the next few days, weeks, months, years....

Now that there are items in the shop the question is - How do you let people know you have stuff to sell? 

I've spent minutes, hours, days, even months researching and reading just about everything I can find on the Internet about bringing people to your blog and Etsy store. The one consistent piece of information is to participate in Social media marketing.

The next question is - what is Social media marketing? 

Well, Social media marketing is the method of gaining website traffic or attention through social media sites with the hopes of interesting enough people they stop by for a visit and possibly they may choose to purchase something from the shop.

Some of the more popular social media sites are Facebook, Instagram, Flickr, Pinterest, Twitter, etc.

After picking the social sites to participate it, then you have to create an account and if you are a little creative you could setup a unique banner for your corner of their site.

Okay - Now that you built it...will they come?

Excellent question!

I have setup accounts and even customized some of the banners.  Now I'm trying to figure out what I should or shouldn't do to help build my up and coming business.

I absolutely feel like a fish out of water....gulp, gulp.

I popped over to Barnes and Noble and purchased a couple of books - off to read some more.

Please feel free to share a comment if you happen have any ideas about social media marketing, or know of a good website, or blog that has good information. It would be appreciated!

Thanks so much for stopping by!
JD






Friday, June 27, 2014

Etsy Store Now Open for Business

It has taken me a while but I've finally got my greeting cards ready to sell and have listed the first, and right now, only card in the shop which is the Red Truck.



I set up the Etsy store a while back but wasn't very confident on what all was needed so I placed it in vacation mode and started reading just about everything I could get my hands on to learn what I should do to setup shop correctly.

I've written the About Me and Shop Announcements, figured out shipping policies, and begun drafting descriptions of the cards.

I've taken a lot of photographs - like the ones above - but I'm still working through how to make them better. They still seem dark and unfortunately, I don't have a lot of natural light in my house so I'll probably have to build a light box.

If you have an Etsy store or know anything about improving the lighting for photos please leave a comment. I would be very grateful for any helpful advice!

Thanks for stopping by for a visit!
JD


Tuesday, June 17, 2014

The Yellow Vase...




Works been a little stressful lately and nothing helps to 
relieve it better than spending some time working on my digital art again. 

Thanks for stopping by!
JD

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Springtime....

I love springtime....

The tiny white flowers remind me of fireflies. 


The waterfalls make such a peaceful sound and are a great place for the birds to take a bath.


Maizie enjoys the pond too.

What is springtime like where you live?

Thanks for stopping by!
JD


Monday, June 9, 2014

Master Bath Completed...

Finally!

After several months we finally finished the master bath at the other house and I thought I would share a few of the before and after photos. For more detailed shots check out our other blog.

Counter Before

Counter After


Shower area Before


Shower area After -1 


Shower area After -2

Shelf area - Before

Shelf area - After

Doors Before


Doors After

Thanks for stopping by!
JD

Sunday, June 8, 2014

Excuse the Mess....

Please excuse the mess....You may notice a few things changing on the blog during the next week as I am working on a few changes to the template.

Today I've added a page to tell you a little bit about me and added several social media icons. Stop by tomorrow to see what else is new!

Thanks for stopping by!
JD

Friday, May 9, 2014

Vintage Mustang Digital Painting...

I just finished my first commissioned piece!
This vintage 1966 Mustang belongs to one of my son's friends.




Thanks so much for stopping by!
Take Care
JD

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Continuing to Create Vintage Car Artwork....




Digital Artwork of vintage blue car at Sunset.

I printed several of my vintage cars onto glossy card stock and showed them to several people at work plus to a few good friends and asked for some feedback. 


I'm excited to say that all the feedback was very positive. Plus several people made some great suggestions on other types of artwork I could do in this style - so I've already begun to think about my next couple of themes. 


Several people thought that my style would work well with greeting cards so I've started working on the card templates and hopefully will be selling some prints in my Etsy shop sometime in the next few weeks. 

I've even received one commission request from someone who wants to give a print as a gift and two other people have said they would definitely be interested in having me create some artwork for them too. 

I've always been nervous about sharing my artwork - so I'm more than a little scared but yet exhilarated! 

Thanks for stopping by!
JD