Wednesday, January 30, 2008

vs.5, New Coast Chimes Website

A partial snapshot of the homepage of my new website. vs. 5~ it's been a long haul! Why not take a moment and explore~ it's a pretty site, with pretty things. To see my new site, just Click Here.

As so often happens, what at first seems so easy becomes more and more complex. Why is that? While it was approximately a million times easier and more fun building a website using nice software, it soon became apparent that there were also many neat new things that could be tried, and that brought with it a steep learning curve.

Since I do almost all my actual work (making neat things) outside in unheated space, designing this new website provided the perfect excuse to sit inside, away from the snow and cold. It is amazing to me, though, just how much time and effort can go into a website. Just choosing titles for each page is a major task, not to mention colors, and.... well, you get the picture.

I know vs.5 will not be the end of it, either. But at least I have gotten it to the point where I feel quite proud.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

At last~ Decent light!

windchime, wind chime, sea glass, beach glass, copper, art chime

Beach glass inspired kaleidoscope wind chime. Five copper chimes with a beach stone clapper. For more information, or to bid on this wind chime,
Click here.

It's been a long, cold, wet, dark winter. For most of my work, I'm outside in unheated spaces. So it's been hard. If it's not so cold my fingers freeze, it's wet, which makes working with wood very challenging. But the worse is trying to take decent pictures. For that, I need light!

At long last, the sun was shining yesterday and I broke my schedule of going to Vancouver each Wednesday to take advantage of it. The light was really great for only about forty-five minutes, and I can tell you that was a busy three quarters of an hour! I took over three hundred pictures (each piece gets numerous pictures, and then I choose the best of the lot).

It was worth it. There is no doubt that the image is the most important element for selling my work online. So I'm very happy to have been able to get some decent pictures. Now to finish sorting through them all, and to update those on my website, as most are not so great.

My new website is into version 4.5 now. It's getting there. More on that later.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Nice, Helpful People

It's not often that I feel the urge to praise a company. These days of endless telephone waits and know-nothing service reps, my usual urge is quite the opposite!

So when I do run across an exceptional company, I feel I should shout the news.

After resolving to totally redo my website, this time using real software and a real web host, I had some decisions to make.

I already mentioned in a previous post how much I like my choice of RapidWeaver website design software, but neglected to mention how much I like my new web hosting company.

Little Oak hosting is truly a jewel. A small company, where they take the time to answer questions quickly (light-fast, I would say), and clearly. Being a beginner at web design, I am sure many of my questions were rather foolish, yet I never heard them laugh at me once! Also, some of my questions were quite frankly not exactly related to their job~ software questions, not hosting questions ~ and yet they happily answered even those questions. Christopher, my contact at Little Oak, reassured me that it was only by asking such questions that I would learn~ now that's nice!

With hosting packages starting at only $25 a year (!), they are quite the excellent deal, too. All packages include tons of neat stuff, like great statistics on website traffic etc. etc.

I am recommending Little Oak to all my friends. One word: Wonderful!

Friday, January 11, 2008

I Love Rust

wind chime, windchime, beach glass, stained glass, rusty chimes

A new look for the new year~ Rusty Iron Chimes! Shown with a beach glass inspired kaleidoscope top section. For more information, or to purchase, Click Here.

I love rust! For a long time, I have been longing to get my hands on some iron to make rusty chimes. After starting my new website,, I got on with this rusty chime project.

The first steel yard I visited here on the Sunshine Coast only had gas pipe, and sanding the creosote-like finish off was not much fun. Fortunately, the second yard had just what I was looking for: pre-rusted heavy pipe. Beautiful!

I have seen painted chimes where the paint has chipped and there is rust where there should not be. Now that's ugly! So isn't it funny how chimes totally covered in rust are so attractive?

And I am not worried about the durability of these. The iron is thick, and it will be years and years before the rust eats them away. The beach stone clapper sounds really nice against these large chimes, too.

So for the New Year, a New Look. I am not abandoning copper. I love copper, too. But it's great to explore new materials.

Saturday, January 05, 2008

New Website!

I'm not a huge fan of New Year resolutions. But oddly enough last year I resolved to make a website. I did that. This year I resolved to make a good website. I think maybe I have made progress towards that goal, too, already. Here is a screen shot of the homepage:

It's now called Coast Wind Chimes.

If you ever visited my old, cobbled together site, I think you might enjoy visiting the new site and seeing how much easier it is to navigate, and some of the neat new features, like a slide show.

I would like to thank the folks at Realmac Software for their Rapidweaver web design software. Rapidweaver made putting my new site together such a pleasure, especially after the HTML nightmare of the old site. The forum at Rapidweaver is great, too, with such clear answers from those who know what they are doing.

It's been cold, wet, and windy, and so it was nice to stay inside and work on the website. But now it's time to get out and make some new, interesting things.