Tag Archives: cat

Squishy The Cat Movie Posters

What does SOPA mean to me?

Today is the big day with a blackout across major sites on the internet but I’m not going to talk about that really. I came across the rather excellent the Oatmeal anti SOPA page earlier and I have to say it’s the first site to really spell things out in simple language for people. (Of course it’s the oatmeal so you may find it offensive if you do click on through)

This got me in turn thinking about things I’ve done and what do you know I would potentially have one of my sites shut down (or should I say cat’s sites) if SOPA came into being.

It’s a non for profit site and a bit of a labour of love it is of course the page of Squishy The Cat.

Squishy The Cat Movie Posters

He has appeared in a number of movie poster / parodies and if SOPA / PIPA came into power and someone takes offence / feels the parody works are infringing on copyright then hey presto the site could be gone in a second. This would make Squishy very sad and we don’t want that do we? I’ve had a load of people thank me for bringing a smile to their faces and so many nice comments from complete strangers on the internet it’d really sadden me that this could just be wiped of the face of the earth without any due process if the laws are made.

Squishy doesn’t normally make serious posts apart from his political campaigns but that’s another story but he spoke out earlier on the Squishy the Cat Facebook page

 

Year Of The Cloud 2

Branding your blog posts

We all know that content is king. We’re continually bombarded by the message on all the SEO sites we visit. I am however one of those people who need both written content and visual content.

A few years back I sent on Michele a silly graphic relating to a dot EU promotion that Blacknight was running. I’d been taking pictures of the cat with my new camera and working as a freelancer from home always means that a slight cabin fever situation kicks in from time to time and hey presto he loved the graphic. Personally I don’t think it’s that great today but it was a start.

Kitty needed the munnies

I think a week or two later and Michele used another picture on the site (he had been adding stock images to all his posts to make them as I said a bit more visual) and this time I ended up branding up that image a little bit and changing the size to fit in with the blog design. I came up with the slogan as well which I was rather proud of. Again it was for a domain promotion.

To .Be or not to .Be

Shortly after that I ended up coming up with a standard design we’ve used on most of the blog graphics (not all the time … time factors into things sometimes) and also started sourcing most of the images we use on the blog graphics and not to mention coming up with silly captions and marketing ideas for them.

Standard Blacknight Blog Graphic Format

Well it’s a while on and I’ve ended up making a lot of these graphics taken a few photos .. used pictures of the cat as well :) The big question sometimes for me is just how much time do you invest in them. For us the answer seems to be a bit sometimes it’s a 5 minute job other times it takes quite a bit more time.

Blog Graphics

It can be a pretty time consuming process sourcing images. Coming up with an idea. Finding an image within the budget. Trying to make things fun bring a smile to peoples faces and ultimately we hope lead to the Blacknight brand becoming stronger. Personally it’s something I enjoy a lot and we’ve gotten good feedback in the past whether it’s for the blog images the newsletters or adverts we run.

So what do you think is it worth the effort we put in? Do you even notice or care?

The recent Year of the Cloud promotion for example starts as a “I need a blog graphic for a promotion promo code cloudyear

O … K … ? :) (generally my usual response to these kinda requests)

Moving on and I have a think about it while doing a few other bits and pieces … and we get to this stage … still a mockup

Year Of The Cloud

Obviously I’m thinking Chinese new year here which is I think on the 23rd of January. Bit boring it’d be fine liked where I was going with the Year of the Cloud / Dragon thing … BUT Michele says … can we get a dragon in there somewhere and hey presto I go searching for a bit sourcing imagery … another iteration / idea … scrap that another idea … nope and … finally and we end up with

Year Of The Cloud 2

Add in a silly byline and people seem to love it big question for me is will it convert to sales and make our brand stronger. I’d love to hear some peoples thoughts. Is it worth the effort we go to?

(By the way shameless sales pitch why not get a great discount on cloud hosting over on the Blacknight Blog)

 

Country gone to the dogs?

For the day that’s in it …

Country Gone To The Dogs
If you’re in Ireland and able to … get out there and vote.

Be the change you want to see in your pocket!

Unfortunately I’m not in the country along with a few other colleagues who are travelling today so we’ve no way of actually voting. (One in Brussels, one in the US and I’m in Nantes) I went over to BallotBox and made my vote. For what it’s worth hopefully it may lead to changing of the system. I believe in other EU countries people can mail their vote or visit an embassy to have their vote heard.

Cats vrs Dogs who will win?

Yoda as a Kitty

Those who know me probably think I’m some kinda cat obsessed maniac of some sort and I guess you might be slightly right. 3 years ago give or take a few months my wife wanted a cat and we got Yoda (stage name Squishy). I was never a big fan of cats growing up I have to be honest so it came as a rather major surprise to like the little guy so much. 3 years on we’ve clocked a lot of miles and done a lot of work together (working from home and himself being an indoor cat means we’ve spent much of those 3 years together).

Working Together

Squishy has his own facebook page now with 300+ followers which I find highly amusing but that’ll be another blog post another day and that isn’t exactly where I’m going with this post.

Working on the desk

One of the things I do for Blacknight is try to come up with some interesting graphics / imagery for their blog posts / newsletters / campaigns. For these I’ve used pictures of Squishy as well as other stock imagery of cats / dogs and so on.

An example of one of the graphics would be:

Barking Mad

But this got me thinking. I have a strong dislike/fear of spiders (arachnophobia) so obviously I wouldn’t like to see them used on a blog post. I know a few people have a dislike of cats and dogs (I know I was shocked too).

So I ended up running a little poll a few weeks back to see just what peoples reactions are. I mentioned it on Twitter / facebook and maybe one or two other locations and I ended up getting just shy of 90 votes which I was quite happy about. (Thanks everyone who took the time to vote)

Are you a dog person or a cat person poll results

Pretty crazy stats … 14% are cat people vrs 53% being doggy people. Both was included as an option as well and taking that into account (30% liking both) that’ll make 44% of people being cat people vrs 83% being doggy people.

Of course this is a pretty small set of people in the poll (probably mostly my peer group as well I would guess) but still 83% vrs 44% means the next adverts I’ll be running may be more dog orientated (if I do end up using an animal).

So there you have it … if you’re a creative and thinking of using cats or dogs in any advertising you’re going to be doing maybe think twice. Do you dislike one or the other ? Would seeing a cat / dog in an advert make you smile or turn you off the ad?

Borcat … for make benefit glorious nation of Çatakhstan

So its been a week or so since my last post but I’ve got my excuses lots has been happening. I was in Morocco for one and had a great time. Shutting down completely for a few days from online life is definitely to be recommended from time to time. Are we too connected sometimes .. yes .. yes we are.

The worst thing about coming back from holidays where you shut off is the amount of catching up you have to do especially when you’re a freelancer but thats going somewhere else that I don’t want to go with this post and a post on Fes in Morocco and my trip will be coming up shortly… So without further ado here we have my latest contribution to the Squishy The Cat / Catatar dynasty meet Borcat:D

Borcat