The internet has changed so much since I first launched Weddingbee back in 2006. Even though blogs had been around for years at that point, I still had to explain what a blog was to most people. We launched a wedding blog, and at the time it seemed like it was a big deal.
The bar has certainly been raised since then! Blogs now feature gorgeous pictures and magazine-worthy layouts. I’m constantly impressed with not only the level of design many blogs have today, but also the level of content. I know many of you have blogs or want to start blogs, so I thought it’d be interesting to compare what it was like launching a blog in 2006 vs. 2012.
– Design: Back then Mr. Bee’s friend came up with a design in a couple hours. Now a professionally designed site has become standard. We hired Lauren O’Neill to design the Hellobee website, and Minhee of Paper+Cup to create many of the graphic elements you see on the site, including buttons, layouts, printables, etc.
(inspiration board for Hellobee design by Lauren O’ Neill)
– Photography: Back then I used a point and shoot camera to take pictures. Now I use a DSLR for every picture, and took photography lessons to learn how to shoot manual.
– Photoshop: Back then I didn’t do any photo editing at all. Now I have to know how to use photoshop not only to edit pictures, but also to create layouts.
– Layouts: Back then I posted an image and then wrote a description under it. Now I use templates Minhee designed to create layouts in photoshop.
– Styling: Back then I never thought about styling a photograph. Now I’m looking into taking a workshop on styling because great styling really takes your pictures to the next level.
– Blog: Back then it was enough just to have a blog. Now everyone wants an iphone app… and an Android and Blackberry app!
– Programmer: Back then we could install WordPress plug-ins ourselves. Now we need a programmer and webmaster to create custom features.
– Networking: Back then there was no network of wedding/design/parenting/etc. blogs. Now everyone knows everyone through link exchanges, networking events, and social media.
– Social Media: Back then blogging was social media. Now you have to be active on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google Plus, Stumbleupon, etc.
With the quality of blogs getting higher and higher, I find that I’m constantly having to improve or learn a new skill. On the one hand it’s great because it constantly challenges me to be better, but on the other hand it can be overwhelming because just maintaining your social media is practically a full-time job!
I really do think that blogs are the new magazines. So many talented graphic designers are creating gorgeous blogs, and blogs have really matured to the point where they’re giving magazines a run for their money. I now find that the best ideas are in the blogosphere rather than in magazines.
Do you find that blogs are replacing magazines for your inspiration needs?