January 2, 2018

Violasong 6.0

No graphics editors were awoken over the holidays in the making of this little blog layout. I designed it primarily in the Firefox Inspector, overriding the styles of the Minimal theme in jekyll-now. The headers use a photo of an acrylic painting I made in 2015. I had some good fun with CSS blend modes and background-clip.

This site is definitely a work in progress, especially the art page, but I wanted to get the first version out the door this week. (Thanks to my colleague Jen Simmons for the motivational push to reboot personal websites for the new year!)

I’m now using my domain name, violasong.com, with my GitHub pages site. The term “violasong” (which creepily autocorrects to “violating” and confuses people by sounding like a Asian American woman’s name (“Viola Song”) so some people think it’s my actual name) came about in 2004 when I first registered a domain name for my website. It refers to the viola, an instrument I (rustily) play. There are very few songs written for the viola. It’s an odd phrase but it fits.

December 22, 2017

Starting a new blog

Things have gotten a lot easier since the last time I rebooted my blog. Years ago when I used MovableType, blog-making involved many hours of work importing from other blogs, mucking around in MySQL, hacking changes into the Perl backend, and messing with .htaccess. This time, I’m starting fresh with the fantastic jekyll-now project for GitHub Pages, and I’m editing this using the prose.io authoring tool. I’m really impressed with how smoothly it all works.

Posting personal thoughts on the internet is pretty challenging for me—I often agonize over how to word a 140-character tweet. As somewhat of a perfectionist, it’s uncomfortable to put myself out there in a system that feels so permanent and widely accessible. I was grateful for the recent opportunity to write for the Firefox Nightly blog about the DevTools visual refresh—it stretched some very dormant muscles and it felt good to communicate about my work in a structured way. Some more writing about design may be fun, and I’ll probably talk about art, video games, and life in Portland. Once things get rolling, it’ll be nice to discuss the ideas I listed in my existing personal site.

My biggest rule for this blog is to keep posts short and imperfect so that I don’t go another many years without blogging. Let’s see what happens!