Monday, January 10, 2011

My deviantART page

In the last post, I wrote about my shops at cafepress (1,2,3) and zazzle.  Today, I write about deviantART.

My deviantART page is, and will probably be my primary photo site for a while.  Over the years, I've put a lot of time into making my website work, getting creative with ways to show the users the quality of the prints they will get, etc.  All of that custom work takes a lot of time and trouble.  On top of that, I've never made any money off of the site, so I am only paying for shared hosting, not a dedicated server.  With shared hosting, my memory allotment is smaller than most of the images I upload.  It means that when I was doing image manipulation (watermarking, generating thumbnails, etc) a performance monitor of some sort on the server would kill my process.  Normally, my processing was fast enough to finish before it was killed, so the files still saved, but it killed sessions and everything.  So I would upload one picture, then have to log back in to upload the next one, etc.  So I ended up having to write a .net client app to handle image processing before the actual upload, which is just clunky and one more piece of code I have to maintain.

I'm tired of it.  So I'm going to be uploading to deviantART instead.  Most likely, it means I won't be controlling my prints as well.  For instance, my image processing controlled placement and size of my signature logo depending on the print size.  The signature was always 4 inches across on prints, unless the print was so small that that would make it more than 1/3 of the image width.  I won't have that control on deviantART without uploading 15 versions of the same image.  But, I won't have to write all of the code to handle the uploads, page views, comments, zooms, etc. either.

Also, deviantART has an existing community.  As I think I've said before, I've never gotten into the social networking thing, but it is there.  So I'm going to start submitting my photos and other art out to existing groups on deviantArt.  I should get decent criticism, hopefully, and be able to improve.  And I'll be building up a fan base at the same time (again, hopefully).

On the SEO side, all of my posts to deviantART link back to the website, cafepress, this blog, etc.  As I create more sites (ie, Facebook, Twitter, etc).  I'll be adding those links as well.   This is supposed to help improve your page ranking with google, so it should get me more external hits, if I can ever figure out what keywords I actually want people to be able to use to find my stuff.

I'll probably still keep the website around, but I don't know how often, if at all, I will update it.  But if I ever get a decent fan base and manage to quit my day job, I'll need a professional site.  I won't be writing it myself, though.

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