Category Archives: Graphic Design

The nature of Heaven. And Hell.

You know that joke about what countries would be in charge of things if this were Heaven or if it were Hell? You know the one…where in Heaven, the British are the police, and in Hell, it’s the Germans? Well, I got to thinking about how that would apply to technology. And I came up with this: Continue reading The nature of Heaven. And Hell.

Teen Teachable Moments in (Louisiana) History.

Well, we (my 14-year-old daughter) and I just got back from Lake Charles, LA, where she competed in the Louisiana State Social Studies Fair. Well, “competed” isn’t exactly the right word. She entered. She did her best. She excelled. And she did not win. But for her to have “competed” would have required that they actually stage a competition, which, sadly, they did not. What they did do bears some explanation – and analysis. Continue reading Teen Teachable Moments in (Louisiana) History.

Updating our Look & Feel

It’s been a while, but I’ve finally gotten around to updating the site’s look. A little. When I first created the “Captain Digital” persona, I wanted to evoke a 1940’s style cartoon look. While that worked well as far as the goal, the reality was that working with the color halftone pattern was a major pain. Add to that a desire to remake Captain Digital’s image into something just a wee bit more modern and hip, and you have a need for a image refresh. Problem was, I really didn’t have time to work on it. I tried an intermediate step of using a modernized cartoon version of the original, but there were some things I wanted to fix – in particular, I felt like losing the helmet would be a good idea. So As of today, we’ve got a new version of Captain Digital. The old ones will be retired, as I can get to it.

Let me know what you think.

New projects…

I have a couple of new projects to talk about. I’m a member of an indoor pistol/handgun range, set up as a non-profit. They had a really bad website, in desperate need of an update. I”m still tweaking the new stuff, but here’s a before-and-after look at the project:

The old site: http://www.lsgc.org

The new site: http://www.letsshootgunclub.com

Part of the challenge is going to be to get the old site (as well as another one on Tripod.com) shut down, as the people that set those sites up are no longer with the club – and apparently there’s some bad blood between folks that’s caused these sites to remain in limbo.

Another project I’ve been working on is the recently-updated site for my church: http://www.allsaintsamarillo.org. I’m using the Slideshow Pro  Flash component to deliver not only a picture gallery, but a front-page “splash scren” style rotating banner thing, that can be updated by way of SlideshowPro’s excellent CMS tool.

I’d be interested to get some feedback on both projects, if you’re so inclined.

New site launched. Read all about it.

We just lit up a new site for RiverFields – an Amarillo-based sporting goods shop that specializes in fly fishing, hunting, and self-defense. Their old site was, dated, to put it mildly. The reason was, it required a web guy to make any changes. It was just way too difficult for RiverFields to make changes conveniently. Therefore, they simply didn’t change anything. For several years. At all.

We began the new site by designing it with an eye towards how they’d be able to update it easily. That meant designing it for Adobe Contribute (so they could make changes to the text and static pictures) and implement a content management system so they could easily make changes/additions/deletions to their photo galleries (using the worth-its-weight-in-gold SlideShow Pro Director).

You can see the new site at www.riverfields.com. You can compare and contrast it with the old site, which (for a while yet) is online at www.riverfields.com/oldsite.

Let me know what you think.

Nothing like a little unbiased polling…

A week or so ago, one of the special-interests sites (for professional animators, if you must know) sent me a request to participate in a poll regarding how artists plan to vote in November. I responded, as it looked as if it was legitimate, and trying to get an honest sample from a specific demographic. 

They lied. 

What this was, in fact, was an agenda-driven poll, taken so that the person behind the poll, could spew his far, far left, Liberal point-of-view, and use the (very unscientific) poll results to justify his own hate-filled B.S. 

In case you think I’m exaggerating, here’s the link to the article in question: Continue reading Nothing like a little unbiased polling…

Let me entertain you.

It dawned on me, as I was creating some ‘quickie’ bizcards, that I needed a website specific to the musician-side of my life. I’m a big believer in perception versus reality, and the reality is, people perceive a certain degree of “serious” in regards to an email address. If you want someone to take you seriously, a Gmail, Hotmail, or Yahoo address is not gonna cut the mustard. On the other hand, if you have your own domain name, it’s almost like instant street cred. So I bought bradkozak.com and set it up as a site dedicated to my singer/songwriter/entertainer biz. Of course, since I create websites for a living, it didn’t take but a couple of hours to throw together a website. (It took longer to get Mrs. Digital to help me with the photos, and to do the Photoshopping than it did to write the site code.) Continue reading Let me entertain you.

A little experiment in musicial (self-)marketing.

Recently, I’ve gotten restless, and I’ve decided to begin playing music professionally again. Trouble is, I don’t have a lot of contacts here in Amarillo. So I’ve decided to apply the same techniques I recommend to my marketing clients to my own situation. That means I’ve got to find ways to get myself noticed around town. What you see at the left here is a poster I whipped up in an hour or so this evening. I’ve secured a one-night gig – kind of a “let’s see if this works” kind of thing. Obviously, I’d like this to turn into a regular gig. So I’m doing everything I know how to do to make that happen. First, we’ll start with promotions. I’m going to print several of these posters and give them to Pizza Hut. I figure that the combination of a nice-looking poster along with taking the initiative to promote my appearance there will go a long way towards helping them see the possibilities. It won’t cost me much to do it, and it will help serve my larger goal of getting my name out there as a musician in Amarillo. With only two days before the gig, I don’t have much time to self-promote, but I figure that anything I can do is better than sitting around and waiting for something good to happen. Continue reading A little experiment in musicial (self-)marketing.

A little blogging news.

grokmediaI’m a big fan of blogging. Part of it is that I’m a writer – copywriting, techincal writing, correspondence, you name it. (Mrs. Digital keeps bugging me about writing the next Great American Novel. We’ll see.) Anyway, I’ve been gratified by the responses I’ve gotten, as well as the ever-increasing number of people that are reading my blog. Blogging is a lot like anything else you do – the more you put into it, the more you get out of it. One of the things I’ve learned, is that if you put a little work into promoting your blog with the blog aggregators and social networking services, you’ll dramatically increase the number of people that know about your blog – and if it’s any good, the number of people reading it. Continue reading A little blogging news.

Perception IS Reality.

What is real? That’s really the most fundamental question, isn’t it? If we can’t trust our senses, we cannot tell what’s real from what’s not. And that brings us, campers, to the true nature of marketing – perception versus reality.

I once worked for a guy who was a brilliant marketer – a true natural. His favorite aphorism was “Perception IS reality.” His point was that your view of reality is colored by your belief system and, therefore, your perceptions…ergo, perception IS your reality. It follows then, that it doesn’t matter what reality is – it matters only what your audience PERCEIVES reality to be.

Think about the implications of this for a second. They are staggering. Continue reading Perception IS Reality.