When I am NOT whining, I am working. I have a day job, a night job and of course my weekend Brantlers job ... well, okay, let's call that "fob" (fun + job).
So in my night job, Rick of Build Your Own Business Websites and I have been having a little fun. Rick teaches folks how to build websites customizing Wordpress and the Thesis theme. He has 100's of videos and develops cool Plug-ins to make members lives easier. He also has a Live Q&A where members call in with questions, he answers and even demonstrates the process live. Oh, and the great part. It is all recorded so you can go back and review what you thought you understood during the session. (I have to check and recheck all the time ... the senior moments I have).
We decided to offer a few free makeovers - suggestions to members who were feeling a little overwhelmed about designing their site, choosing colors, what to put where. Believe me, I know how frustrating that can be. Staring at a blank canvas or landing page and trying to imagine what it should all look like. Adding a little art here and there, what art? And where? What could be the background? Color combination possibilities? It is always easier for me to come up with ideas for others rather than my own. Of course, these are only ideas for them to chew on or build upon ... but I think it has been great fun.
The last make-over, Rick wrote 2 new Plug-ins to accommodate a multi-tasking flash header and landing page side-by-side widgets. Duane helped me make a really fun little Flash animation for the banner. (And then I had to relearn the little bit of Flash I know).
I have built many sites now using BYOB Website tools (including one or two of my own) and continue to learn daily. It is great to have control of your own website, comfortable to go in and make instant changes, and to have Rick there to help me through the process.
Below are the quick mockups for ideas Rick and I had for the first two. Then he builds them and makes them a reality.