I showed up to Veneer on Monday, no one from the Veneer team was in the office. Kat and Dina (members of the PR firm) where there and told me that the Veneer team was probably not coming into the office that day. I called Kiefer to confirm this and she apologized for not giving me a heads up. I was a little annoyed and disappointed that I had driven all the way out to North Berkeley just to have to drive home again, but I took the opportunity to check out this glassblowing shop that I always drive by but never have had time to go in. The shop is basically a guild of glassblowers who create their art and then sell their glass pieces all in one building. People who do not work there are only aloud to see the front of the shop with the glass pieces that are for sale. There were some really cool and complicated looking pieces. I think that glassblowing would be really interesting to learn about and try as a hobby, but I don’t think I could ever pursue it as a career. The work would not be structured enough and I would have to find my own inspiration and motivation to create things instead of creating work for a client or for a specific purpose. I guess a glassblowing career would be ok if customers pre ordered pieces and then I had to create them, but I don’t think I could just come to work and make random pieces every day without structed inspiration.
This week I also meet with Elijah to talk about all the prices and amounts of products that he wants to order. I think the meeting went pretty well and I think that he understands how ordering all the products and setting up the website works so thats good. He has a domain name already from godaddy but he is planning to unregister it so we can regregister it through squarespace. Squarespace is cheaper and has more features than godaddy so its better. After the meeting, I went home and sent Elijah a list of the information and images that I needed to create the products. I was planning on starting to work this weekend, but he never sent me the pictures of himself that I can work with or an Illustrator file of his logo, so I decided to hold off until I have the materials. He also agreed that when we are ready to order all the merchandise, he would type in his credit card and shipping information so he can pay directly for the products and he agreed that I can make the squarespace account for the website under his name with all of his information so he can edit it in the future and directly pay the yearly fee. He asked about how to improve search results so when people typed in keywords in google that relate to what he is does, his page will come up higher. I told him about tags (keywords that you associate with a page) and how you can improve SEO (search engine optimization) with a part of squarespace. We also talked about how, if he wants his page to come up first every time someone types in “surfer rapper”, he would have to pay google millions of dollars to buy key words and then his page would show up at the top in the promoted section. In general though (without paying google a ton of money), the google search engine uses an algorithm that takes into account the number of times the page was visited, the number of places where a link to the website is posted on other areas on the web, how relevant the content on the page is to the keywords that are searched, the quality of the content on the page and other things. No one (besides the people who work at google) know the actual algorithm because if they did then website builders would be able to “game” the system so their website would get more viewers and come up at the top of the search list even though their website’s content is not related to the keywords searched for. Someone might do this to get more traffic on their site if their site has ads. The more views of the ads, the more money the owner of the site will get.
On Thursday at Veneer, I continued to help work on the SEO part of the Vitality website (the same thing I was working on last week). This just meant typing in keywords and writing descriptions for google to display under the link to the page. The site they are creating has so many pages! Like most things I do at Veneer, the work is pretty boring but the concept behind the work is interesting.
I also worked on the writing lab logo this week. Here are some pictures:
My favorite one is the one that I used to test out the colors. I’m not sure if we will end up using a color logo though because Mr. Poling said that most of the printing he will do will have to be in black and white and if we use a color logo but print in black and white, the logo will just look gray. I also think that the logo in black and white looks better in black and white then it does in color.
On Friday, I helped out with the Performers for Progress fundraiser by making art that was inspired by the performances. I created three paper cuts that were inspired by Matisse’s paper cuts. Here is a link to some examples: https://www.google.com/search?q=matisse+cut+outs&espv=2&biw=1164&bih=466&source=lnms&tbm=isch&sa=X&ei=8100Vb_GHIudNvrJgdAB&ved=0CAYQ_AUoAQ After the performances the pieces were auctioned to raise money. I really like making paper cuts and it made me wish that I had more time and motivation to do art that is just for fun. It was also really rewarding to know that the money raised by my work is going to a good cause. The first time I really got into cutting paper to make art was this summer at the pre-college art program I did at RISD. Here is a link to the project I did there where I cut interesting designs into cards: http://sophiaspitulnik.com/2014/07/23/bio-mimicry-cards/