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Stacie Arellano Posts

The Grid – v2 – impressions

Version 2 of the Web Interface to use the Grid is live. as are my struggles to co-exist with Molly, the AI that runs theGrid.

Examples

First, check out 2 grid sites I’ve created:

TLDR:  I’m not happy with v2. 

I’ve been working on this post for almost a year, I don’t want to bother with more screenshots or examples. v3 should be on its way shortly. I’m posting this now so I can compare my v2 thoughts vs v3. I did purchase a lifetime membership, so I haven’t given up on thegrid, fwiw.

To make my art-portfolio grid site present mostly the way I want, I’ve pretty much resorted to just importing Instagram posts.

Checkout my wishlist items for V3 on my second grid site.

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User Interface

The Backend User Interface is… clunky.It does look more polished than the beta version, and has some pretty animated menus, but it’s also less clear on how you and the AI work together to make a page.

!) The new site dashboard wastes a whole screen of real estate.

Large screenshot showing almost nothing above the fold.

 

 

 

 

 

2) Post ordering does not place the latest post at the top, and while you can drag and drop items to move them around, I can see this easily becoming onerous with 3 dozen or so images or posts.  You can actually zoom out the thumbnail views for easier drag and dropping, but there is no only text version to help you.

A little investigation has shown that the AI does not read the content or title of your posts, and no way to force thegrid to sort items on either the backend, or exposed as a feature for the front end.  No way except to drag and drop the articles back in order.

Posts with images in them do tend to stay in the same order as listed.

Search

There is no search option for either the front or backend.

Navigation

There are more navigation varieties this time around, so that’s nice, but rarely surprising.

Some of the options are ones I would never use, so I have to keep hitting redesign until I get one that’s ok.

 

 

Grid Font strangeness

Typography

Typography is strange, sometimes fonts are larger when placed next to similar designed smaller fonts. This example is using 2 links to two separate pages (same thing, shown differently, beside itself)

Additionally, every page load/reload seems to suffer from a CSS Flash of Unstyled content, which means the text/page jumps around a bit until it figures out what font style/sizes should be.

 

Redesign Process

This whole process irks me. We’re asked a series of questions everytime we ask for a redesign.

The Layout: Do you like it?

(where 1-3 means redesign, and 4 and 5 mean…)

The color: Do you like it? 

Choosing 1-2 here will prompt you to choose another color palette

Typography:

Molly.AI is supposed to be able to identify what parts of an image are important. Faces, skylines, or text text should not have text overtop of them, similar rules apply to cropping. This seems to be hit or miss. We used to have a quick key to check to see what part of the image the AI thought was the focus.

I’d be ok if you could at least click on the text overlay and see the original, or uncropped version.

Yes, you do have options to turn off the cropping, overlays and color manipulation. I want to see theGrid do things with the design that I wouldn’t have thought of, colors, layouts, navigation.

I’ve made a wishlist of things I want Molly.AI to be able to do, and put it on my Ghost In The Well grid site, but I’m going to copy it here as well (the flexible updating wishlist will stay on that site.

But, as of now here it is:

Regarding Function

  • Have a media manager, so I don’t need to upload the same image more than once. (confirmed for V3)
  • Iterate designs much faster, allow me to give input.(coming in v3?)
  • Auto pull in feeds of my other sites or social networks. (Instagram/twitter – perhaps into my drafts mode so I can curate later?)
  • Give Molly some initial direction in the purpose of my site. (maybe in v3)
    • Or, enter content and have Molly intuit, summarize and categorize what I may want the direction to be. (this feature may become the clustering idea and may be in v3)
  • Really surprise me
    • Design some crazy bad things
    • Design some crazy good things
  • Allow for tagging of posts
  • Have option to attach the user profile/sig to appropriate article.
  • Date and Time stamps available to be included on the posts.
  • Add Accessibility warnings for color/font choices.
  • Ability to pin certain articles or objects to the top of the homepage
  • Choice of different sizes for headers images/videos (both in app and on site) Currently wasting space ‘above the fold’
  • Ability to merge posts together

Usability:

  • Add settings/preferences for the admin experience. IE color theme/font sizes, animations on or off.
  • Add Revision history. Date/time/last edited by which user information.

About Face: Now Available!

I am so proud to present my latest book, About Face, a year of diverse portraits.

 

About Face books on table

Paging through About Face is the closest you can get to actually holding my sketchbook in your hands.

As you turn each page you’ll see both the front and the back of the portrait, where the ink and markers have bled through the paper.

Please enjoy the 43 portraits I’ve included in About Face, each one inspired by unique beautiful people who have volunteered their own photos as kindly muses via the Sktchy.com iOS app.

About face, a year of diverse portraits is available now on Amazon.com.

Win my new Raven Print

I have an ambitious challenge for June!

My goal, pay off the last of my student loans!!

Help me be debt free and get awesome original art, and the chance to win an ultra limited edition of my brand new linocut- Raven And Pomegranate!

Tiny Raven and Thumbprint Pomegranate
Print preview.

https://squareup.com/store/staciearellano

I’ve updated my new online shoppe with linoprints ranging from $20-$80.

Every purchase is an entry to win the new full size linocut I’m working on this month! I’ll be posting progress pictures all month as I carve and start printing.

Each purchase I ship out will also get a tiny echo of the full size print (see picture in this post). You may recognize this raven from my Wisdom of Trees print, he’s graciously decided to help me reward your kindness and patronage.

Each mini print will numbered and will feature a thumbprint pomegranate.

These minis won’t be available for purchase, they are a special thank you for everyone who helps me reach my goal this month in my quest to be debt free!

Want to be part of this amazing milestone in my life?

Buy a linocut today!

 

Gallery night thanks!

Stacie @ 100 state for gallery nightHeartfelt thanks to everyone who made it out to Gallery Night 2017 this month, and especially those who came by to visit me and my portraits. They’ll remain up at 100state until September.

I spent most of my time talking with people, meeting up with friends, checking out all the amazing art and flirting with the band. That means I got very few pictures of the event myself, but was actually engaged in experiencing it.

If you want to see more pictures of the event there are a few on Carlos’s Instagram and also a few videos of art in the space during gallery night.  Official event photos available soon.

Thanks again to 100arts for allowing me to be part of this years Gallery Night, and again to everyone who came by to say hello and see my art!

If you’re looking for a great co-working space in Madison you can join 100state and request the teal meeting room where my portraits are hanging. I hope you enjoy hanging out with them as much as I did while making them.

Please, feel free to send me pics of you taking selfies with my art in the background. 😀 Who knows, perhaps I’ll be inspired to make a little portrait from your picture, and we’ll have a little portrait-ception going on. 😀


Here are some examples:

Stacie beside the mermaid  Pleased looking Stacie stands in front of another framed set of portraits.


 

Gallery Night 2017

a handful of colorful illustrated portraits on a table.Come and see my art!

Gallery Night is May 5th, a Madison wide celebration of art and galleries with dozens of participating venues.

Here is the Gallery Night map of participating galleries. (pdf)

The 100state arts organizer liked my work at the Print & Resist show and invited me to share my series of portraits at the 100State ‘Welcome to the Neighborhood‘ show:

I’m showing 30 of my portraits inspired by sktchy.com photos.

My work will remain up in the gallery until September 1st.

http://100state.com/100arts/

There will be a reception with refreshments and live music at 100state on Gallery night.

 

Here are the event details

https://100state.com/main-event-registration-page/?action=evrplusegister&event_id=35

Hope to see you swing by,

Stacie Arellano

Artist Statement

Stacie Arellano is a Madison based graphic novelist and illustrator. Her About Face portrait series was created with Prismacolor markers on Leuchtturm1917 paper and inspired by photos submitted to Sktchy.com.

In addition to ink and marker illustrations, Stacie also hand carves Linoprints and makes prints by hand. Her graphic novel series, Tribute Waters, features a similar blockprint aesthetic, while being fully digitally created.

View her graphic novel work at TributeWaters.com and read thoughts on technology and art at StacieArellano.com