Sunday, January 16, 2005

on designing a blog...

Tonight suddenly I felt the need to answer this question, for those who are wondering and haven't asked me directly... Mira, you're a graphic designer, so why are you using a minor variation on a standard Blogger template? Well, I'm also a website developer, mostly self-taught and on the job. I don't think I"m too shabby of one, either, for having very little formal training in HTML, and no formal training in XHTML. To an extent, this is my training in XHTML, right here. I also haven't done much hand-coding in a quite a while, and I'm out of practice. I used the basic layout of the Blogger template, I like the left-side navigation bar, with the main content to the right, and a header across both columns. I keep making minor tweaks to the code of this blog, and when I'm happy with it, then I'll give the graphics a face lift.

My visual design skills are being used more, so I'm not as worried about "use it or loose it" kicking in yet. I paint, draw, sketch, etc., to keep my design skills sharp, and tend to see the world as one large artistic composition of shapes and color, light and shadow. A friend made the comment "you can't see the world like the rest of us do", and he's absolutely right. There is art everywhere, in nature and in our own creations, if one knows where to look.

Not that I'm going to completely change the color/font scheme, or the visual design of this site. The dark brown background will change. It's not bad, I just don't like having the same background as everyone else who uses the Scribe template. I like the warm tones, the aged parchment look, a somewhat archaic look. The word oubliette is from the Middle Ages, so I want the site to have that sort of feel, calligraphy on parchment.

I'm fully aware an oubliette was a dungeon where the only way in or out was a hatch in the ceiling, and impossible to escape from without help. Prisoners were thrown into an oubliette, left there to die from dehydration or starvation, an in the process they usually went insane. A place where a prisoner was put to be forgotten about. Today, oubliette is used as more of a description of someplace. I can say my office is an oubliette - it has no windows, and is inside a conference room, not off a main hallway. It's a little hard to find my office, and easy to forget about me in there. I've seen people who have created oubliettes in their minds, who have suffered great emotional trauma. They withdraw to this place inside to escape the mental anguish and forget about it, and can not, or will not leave without help of another, to get through the traumatic experience. The word oubliette is French, the verb oublier - to forget, and the suffix -ette meaning small or little. A little place of forgetting.

I come here to try to forget about the bullshit of daily life, to unwind. I never guessed how enjoyable this is, writing what I feel for strangers to read, and comment on. I hope you each enjoy your visits to my world.

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