For this class, you will need to maintain a weekly blog of your progress in the studio. The blogs will be scored on a weekly basis: 2 points for a narrative of around 200 words (usually two paragraphs) describing what has been happening in your studio practice for that week, 2 points for at least 3 images of your progress, and 2 progress for evidence of “newness”.
“Newness” means anything that represents progress, knowing that “progress” is knowledge and it comes in many forms – successes, failures, experiments, and conceptual breakthroughs.
For your blog, many students use WordPress, although you may use another platform as long as it can work like a blog and have images and text in the same post. Other options for blogs are Blogger, Squarespace, Weebly, or Wix.
Before getting started, take a look at some examples of student blogs here: https://claybucket.com/student-blogs/
WordPress.com – This is a blog and website service that the SpaceLab blog is hosted on. Free blogs on WordPress are followed with the .wordpress.com address. WordPress is more customizable than Blogger. It’s easy to use and has a larger number of free templates available than Blogger. Most templates are highly customizable.
Weebly.com – This is also a popular website and blogging option. They have a free tier that is fairly easy to use
Blogger.com – Blogs hosted at Blogger are followed with the .blogspot.com address. Many consider this the easiest blog to learn how to use. Posting is as simple as writing an e-mail. The tradeoff for ease of use is appearance. The number of available templates is smaller and generally they aren’t as customizable as WordPress blogs.
If you want to invest in a website/blog with more features, these are a couple of good options:
Squarespace.com – Starting at $12 per month, Squarespace has lots of great, clean website themes and is easy to set up. They offer e-commerce as well, if you want to start selling work on your website. You can purchase domain names through them, too.
Wix.com – Starting at $10 a month for non-branded websites and blogs, Wix offers great themes and features. It is easy to set up and you can buy your domain name through them as well.
** Squarespace and Wix both offer free services, in exchange for their “branding” and some limited features (as compared to the paid plans)
Some pointers ..
Even if you decide to go for the free website/blog now, you should consider buying your domain name for a future website. Using just your name as a website URL address is more flexible, giving you the opportunity to convert it to another media or approach (if you change your focus). If you purchase something like joeceramics.com, you might regret it later if you become a photographer.
If you would like to purchase a domain name, go to a domain name registration company like Hover.com. Domain name registrations can usually be purchased from between 12-15 dollars per year. Domain name registrations just register your ownership of the domain (for example, Claybucket.com is a domain name), the place where you host the files that make up your website is at a hosting company somewhere else, although many services now allow you to do both “in house”. For example, with WordPress, Squarespace, Wix, etc, you can purchase your domain and hosting within the same service provider.
If you are curious, you can search available domains at a place like Hover. com. If you are interested in building your own website or hosting a blog using a unique domain name address (URL), you should research hosting companies first. Many hosting companies will offer to pay for your domain name registration if you host your website through their company. Again, research is key!