Learn WordPress Illustrations

Last year one of the projects I worked on was Learn.WordPress.com, a newb-friendly initiation to the WordPress.com experience. I directed the project, devised and structured the content and wrote a lot of the copy (along with colleagues Joy & Erica), but I think the part I enjoyed most was letting rip on some collaged illustrations to accompany the tutorials. Here are a handful of them:

WordCamp Yokohama 2010

I’m presenting at WordCamp Yokohama today, along with a bunch of much smarter people (including fellow Automatticians Naoko and Isaac). There’s a really good crowd gathered, and it’s amazing to see the WordPress community getting stronger and stronger out here in Japan.

All of the presentations are being streamed live on Ustream.tv, so you can see them there if you’d like (or catch the recorded versions later). I should think we’ll also be adding presentation videos to WordPress.tv in the coming weeks.

I’ve also put up some additional resources from my presentation on Assaulting Indifference, which focuses mainly on using design thinking, storytelling and visual communication as tools to grab interest and attention for your blog, business, or whatever else you’re putting out into the world.

You can check out links for content and creators discussed in the presentation, along with a slideshow and gallery of the slide designs here. As always, your feedback is very welcome.

State of the Word 2010: Slide Design & Video

Earlier this month I worked with Matt Mullenweg on preparing for his State of the Word presentation for WordCamp San Francisco.

I’ve added a gallery of the slides in case you like to get up close and personal.

My slide designs for the presentation were heavily inspired by some classic Blue Note record sleeves. The thinking here was to bring out the WordPress/Jazz connection emphasized in the presentation narrative, and create a set of slides that reflected Matt’s shared passion for both. We were working with a very tight timeframe, so you might notice variations on a theme in several of the slides. All of the main slides are based on a template system I put together to speed things along and create variety within the limitations of the time available.

And if you’d rather go straight to the source, check out Vintage Vanguard where a huge number of amazing vintage Blue Note covers have been gathered into four galleries.

You can also see the full presentation (with the slides cut in to the video) over on WordPress.tv, or here:

I’d like to touch more on this at a later point, but in the meantime I’d welcome any feedback.

A handful of headshots

On my recent trip out to SF, I managed to catch a few fellow Automattic people on camera. Here are a few of the folks that bring you WordPress.com:

Beau Lebens
Beau
Niall
Niall
Ryan M
Ryan M
Noriyko
Noriyko
Terry
Terry
Rose
Rose
Raanan
Raanan

Being surrounded by all these photogenic people makes me glad I’m usually on the other side of a camera:)

For the photogeeks, I shot all of these with a 5D Mark II and my Canon 85mm F1.2L (wide open, bokeh-whore that I am).

Update: I’ll be posting these again at blog-optimized sizes. In the meantime click on the pics to see them in their fully saturated glory (seems like the auto-resized version have suffered a saturation/contrast hit)

WordPress.tv says Hello World!

I’m really quite excited to say that we’ve launched WordPress.tv, a new addition to the WordPress family focused on making it easy for people to both learn how to use WordPress (in its dot-com and dot-org flavours), and check out the presentations at the WordCamps sprouting up all over the globe. Here’s a video I put together to mark the occasion:

I’ve been a bit quiet here for some time, but behind the scenes, this is the pet project I’ve been working on, with the talented folks at Automattic (Noel Jackson rocking the house with design and implementation and some very late nights, Jane Wells helping to make things more user-focused, MT lending a watchful art-director eye, and Matt performing chief BBQ testing duties).

I joined Automattic back in August 2008, and it’s insane how fast the time has gone. But announcement videos and the hundred plus tutorials I’ve put together aside, WordPress.tv is kind of why I’m here, my raison d’etre at camp WordPress/Automattic. So this is a great day for me.

There’s a long way to go – like all WordPress projects WordPress.tv has been built with the philosophy that it’s better to get it out there and shape things up as we go than try to unleash perfection on day one. So at the moment you’ll find a whole lot of tutorials, but might not see the one you’re looking for. Ditto with WordCamp presentations.

That’s where you come in – if you have requests, ideas or know of WordCamp videos we’ve missed, screencasts or video tutorials that would feel at home on WordPress.tv, let me know via the WordPress.tv blog contact form, or even the spanking new WordPress.tv twitter account. I’ll be posting the latest releases there, too, alongside the WordPress.tv blog.

Hope to see you there – until then, enjoy the show!

2.7 Coltrane across the board

After a lot of hard work and some late nights, 2.7 and it’s WordPress.com sibling are now live and in use across the WordPress community.

I’ve been using 2.7 in it’s various builds for quite a while now, and assure you that if the huge change in UI initially shocks or confounds you, it won’t for long. Having been going back and forth to 2.6 for a few weeks, it gradually became harder and harder to give up the easy navigation, mighty pretty looks and new features that 2.7 has ushered in. Luckily, I won’t need to do that any more.

Thanks to the WordPress community, awesome developers and the good folks of Automattic (who really are an awesome bunch of people), it’s turned out to be a real beauty IMHO.

Hope you enjoy. Here’s the video I put together for the .org release. Most of what you see here applies to .com, but for the plugins and upgrades stuff.

For a full breakdown on what’s new check out Jane’s .com post, or Matt’s .org version.

Now, back to the zillion video tutorials you’ll be seeing around the place very, very soon:)

WordCamp Tokyo 2008

I returned from Tokyo yesterday after attending (and speaking at) the very first WordCamp in Japan, WordCamp Tokyo 2008. The event was booked out within a day of being announced, and I had the chance to meet a great cross section of Japanese bloggers, developers, business people and the awesome folks behind WordPress localization for Japan.

 

WordCamp Tokyo 2008 - Calm before the storm
WordCamp Tokyo 2008 - Calm before the storm

 

 

The event was smack in the middle of Tokyo’s Shibuya (this pic from my hotel room across the way):

 

Shibuya crossing, taken from my hotel window
Shibuya crossing, taken from my hotel window

 

 

In addition to some great presentations, on everything from Firefox + WordPress, to WordPress MU case studies, to the Sandbox theme, it was a really interesting opportunity to see the “state of the Word” Japan-side. I can’t thank the localization team enough for putting the event together, and I’m looking forward to the next meetup.

 

Naoko speaking at the after party
Naoko speaking at the after party

 

 

I particularly enjoyed speaking to the nice range of hardcore WordPress users in attendance – it was amazing to see the variety of applications people are finding for WordPress in Japan. These ranged from representatives of larger businesses (Adobe, Firefox, Paperboy & co. to name but three) through to web developers, students and freelancers. We had some food and drinks after the main event, and I was bowled over by the friendly atmosphere and hi-octane exchange of business cards.

 

Folks get stuck into the food and beer
Folks get stuck into the food and beer

 

 

This also gave me an excellent opportunity to gather feedback, ideas, criticisms and requests from Japanese WordPress users, which I’m now compiling and hope to share here, soon.

 

Japanese WordPress (& Firefox) books
Japanese WordPress (& Firefox) books

 

 

Thanks to everyone that made it, and particularly to Naoko McCracken & the localization team for making it happen! And thanks so much to the very kind Honda-San and Morita-San who walked me right to the door of my hotel (my Tokyo navigation skills aren’t what they were since I moved to Sapporo).