Back To The Drawing Board - 06.20.99

About 6 weeks ago, I finally started getting around to re-designing my website. I had gotten a new computer a couple weeks previous, and after spending a couple weeks just tinkering around and getting aquainted, I figured it was finally time to get down to business. Like anything you set out to do, coming up with the first designs and graphics (and code for that matter) was the most daunting part of it all. Sitting in front of blank document after blank document in different programs, I felt kind of overwhelmed by it all. I had a few ideas, but nothing solid.

Finally, after kicking things around for several days and sketching on a couple notepads I keep lying around, I came up with the design for one section. In only a couple nights, I banged out everything on it, including original graphics. It took me a little while longer to reformat everything that I had to start with, but I got it done in about a week and was estatic when I finally looked at it all through a browser. Sure, it wasn't up anywhere that anyone could see it, but I was excited anyway. It was the first real piece of design and graphics that I had done in awhile that were completely my own. I ended up clicking through almost the entire section and reading things over again, even though I had just written some of them. Everything seemed fresh again, even though it really wasn't.

Over the course of the next couple weeks, I plugged along and did a couple more sections, stumbling and bumbling along the way (and still not too sure about what I had done when finished). All the while, I was re-orienting myself with different parts of the code and graphics in general. When things started looking like they would come together fairly well, I went ahead and set a release date in my mind of early July for the re-vamped site. Although I wouldn't have everything up that I wanted to (and probably won't at any time in the near future), there would be several sections for people to browse through, and that was a good enough start.

Things were on schedule just last week when I looked at the site and realized that I didn't really care too much for some of the things that I had designed only weeks and days earlier. The main thing that was bothering me was that several of the photos I had used for graphics on the site were taken by individuals other than myself. While they were friends of mine and they probably wouldn't care too much if I did use them, I felt like I needed to use images that I had come up with personally.

Over the course of the past week or so, I then went on a breakneck re-design overhaul of the particular sections with the images in question. It wasn't really that I minded using them or that they weren't good (in fact, they were probably better than what I came up with), but I felt like I needed to challenge myself even to use original imagery on the graphics that I created. Probably silly, but it made me feel a lot better when I started sliding the new images into place.

So now, the sections that I wanted to finish are done, and I have tons of other ideas still churning around in my head. I still have to sort a couple things out before everything is up and online, but I'm still going to make my originally planned release date. Although things aren't going to be that drastically different and things are definitely in a preliminary stage, I'm stoked and ready to be this close.

Of course, with the new site launch, this site will become really nothing more than a mirror for my old writing. At that point, the movie review section will be going into limbo (perhaps to be revived at a later date), while the music review and whatever sections will make there respective transitions (the music review section with quite a bit more of an overhaul). Because I don't want to have to keep track of two sites, I'll simply quit updating this site regularly (maybe I'll sporatically FTP to the account, just so geocities doesn't completely shut down the site) and put links all over the place pointing to the new site. Without further wordiness, I will say farewell and ask you to stay tuned for further developments. As always, thanks for reading.