Saturday, November 24, 2007

Thanks for all the great feedback - off to Baja with a new gizmo

Thanks to everyone who emailed me and commented on the blog post for the great feedback about my new website. I have not had time to return all the emails but will try to get to that as time permits. We are leaving today for our trip to the Sea of Cortes with  American Safari Cruises . I wanted to map our route on google earth, and record GPS locations for favorite photo spots and map them on google earth, so I got a Garmin Forerunner 205 GPS watch. There is the ability with this little gizmo to mark waypoints for future reference and map them onto google earth with a freeware program called GPSBabel. I can also map gps routes by using a free web program called Motion Based. The great thing about this approach is that I can use this all with my Mac and do not have to hassle with PC software. This watch will also tell me speed and distance covered on my various jogging / biking / xc skiing routes.



I will be going from Loreto Baja straight to my presentations at Calumet in LA and San Diego, so please stop by either of those events if you are in the area.



Monday, November 19, 2007

New Website now Online

My new website is now up ad running at www.ElizabethCarmel.com. I was pleased with the process at Livebooks and feel that this website is an improvement on my previous one, which was made with iweb and was incompatible with some browsers. I welcome any comments or feedback either via email or via the blog comments. The main improvements are: more detailed online pricing customized for each image, larger image displays, downloadable pdfs of the portfolios, online print ordering, and a more professional / well designed look. We will also be using livebooks for my husband Olof's website update - his current iweb based site is at www.Carmelstudios.com.



We went to the Seahawks game in Seattle yesterday - thanks to my brother in law we were able to get on the sidelines - here is a shot of me shooting side by side with the Sports Illustrated guys (I am using my iphone for pictures, no big cameras allowed on the sidelines without a press pass). I hope to snag a press pass for the next time I go to a game, then I can bring the H3d with the 300 mm zoom and the Canon 5D and the 400 mm zoom.



Hawksgame



Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Livebooks Web Site Home Page

I have spent most of the last few days populating my new livebooks web site with jpgs that are the correct size for the livebooks window (920 x 562 pixels). These will be larger than the jpgs on my current site and provide a better online viewing experience. I have also set up the detailed pricing for each of my prints using the livebooks editing software that is provided with the website, which has gone smoothly since you can price entire portfolios with the same price groups. The new site features a "shopping cart" which can collect a print order and email it to me for follow up payment processing. They do allow Pay Pal to be used but I do not like Pay Pal - I get too much spam from companies claiming to be paypal and would rather do the credit card transactions through our gallery credit card machine. At this point livebooks does not support online credit card processing outside of paypal, but I have found that people purchasing fine art prints usually want to call and talk the the artist or their rep before making a purchase anyway. Here is a screen shot of the home page. The livebooks staff designed it to be very interactive, if you mouse over any of the images you get the title of the portfolio and a link that portfolio. The other pages are still under construction - I hope to have the site up before Thanksgiving. I first have to survive our 8 year old daughter's first sleepover party this friday - time to batten down the hatches!



Picture_3_5



Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Autumn 2007 Portfolio

I finally got the chance to work on my images from this past Autumn. I have posted a few of them in the photo album to the right called Autumn 2007. These images were all taken in California's Sierra Nevada - mostly on the eastern side but the shot of the little Truckee River was taken in the northern Sierra. All these images are available as fine art prints from 16x20 size up to 44x60. I am delivering a new print to a client tomorrow that is 44x60 with a digital matt mounted on gator board and framed (no glass). I gave it about 10 coats of premier art print shield, so it is pretty bomber on the surface. I will try to take an installation photo and post it on the blog tomorrow.



In other news, the Livebooks designers have completed a mock up my new website, and I am very pleased with the new design they have created. I hope to be able to launch the site in the next week, it is a fairly labor intensive process for me to upload all new image portfolios since the jpegs on my existing site are much smaller and the new site will allow for larger ones. I now have to redo my entire image portfolio into 920x562 pixel jpegs to accommodate the larger display size - thank heavens for photoshop batch processing.



The image below was taken on a windy sunrise morning at Convict Lake in the eastern Sierra.



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Friday, November 2, 2007

Web Site Evolution

My www.elizabethcarmel.com website was initially designed by a friend who did a great job, but it became problematic for me to update the site myself since I didn't know html and didn't want to spend the time to learn it. I decided to use Apple's iweb 08 and put together a nice website that I could update when I wanted, however I have been getting feedback from some people that the portfolio would not open on their browsers and in some cases the links bar would not appear, making it impossible to navigate around the site. I called apple tech support and searched online for any fixes, and the only response I got was that it was an inherent problem with the way the sites were generated by the software, and there would be unavoidable problems with some browsers. The final blow came when I upgraded to Leopard and my own site would not load properly in Apple's own Safari browser. I decided to pull the plug on iweb 08 because I need a website that everyone can access - even my licensing rep was having problems. I have been researching other options and have decided on the Livebooks approach. I liked their contemporary designs and the fact that I will be able to have an online shopping cart for my prints. I am hoping the new site will be up and running in the next few weeks so I can put the iweb issues behind me.



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