Saturday, August 16, 2014

Making A Mark on Art - and the end of Squidoo

Over the last seven years I've created some 160 websites about art (Making A Mark on Art) and artists (About Artists) on Squidoo. Yesterday I had news that Squidoo is closing down. Seth Godin has arranged for my featured sites to be merged with HubPages and the current links to them will become redirects after October.

I don't know if I'm surprised or not - I've been predicting the demise of Squidoo for some considerable time and if anything I'm only surprised it's survived for so long.

I now need to decide how and where I host my content in the future.

That's going to take a bit of time which means I think I need to take a break from blogging to make sure I've got all my content backed up and accessible if I need to move it to a new site within my control.  As you can imagine the notion of putting it on another website where somebody else determines what happens to it has little appeal right now!

I had already started planning what I'd do next. However that planning extended to one topic and I've now got lots to sort in an extremely short space of time.  However the good news is that at least I'm not on holiday unlike some poor souls who will come back to find their options very limited indeed!

My presence on Squidoo started off because I wanted a place to organise and host my bookmarks after a computer crashed and took them all with it!

My main reason for hosting on Squidoo was that it was free and it was very easy to add in new information to modules within my compendiums as time passed.  It was also an excellent way of grouping and clustering different sites on a topic and generally there were lots of good things about it. I often said I wished I could have the software for delivering the site - and use it on my own websites.

I now need to find a new way of delivering my content and this time I'm looking more closely at options for economical and easy ways of doing this on my own sites. Some may well migrate to HubPages but I think it's more than likely that some content will find another space to inhabit.

Any suggestions for good ways of hosting INFORMATION websites which are heavy on content are welcome.  These are ones which have
  • content structured in an orderly way - all on one page
  • plus links to lots of information and advice on other websites.
In the meantime here are links to some of the most popular of my websites - soon to be reinvented in another guise!

1. The Best Books about Drawing and Sketching

Do you want to learn how to draw? Want to find out which are the best books about drawing and sketching? This is a big site designed to help those who want to * LEARN TO DRAW * DEVELOP YOUR DRAWING SKILLS and learn about drawing at an advanced level

2. The Best Watercolour Paint for Artists

Do you want to know about: * which is the best brand of professional grade watercolour paints for artists? * the colour range and characteristics of different brand of artist-quality watercolour paint? Or maybe you want to know what other artists think about different brands of paint

3. Coloured Pencils - Resources for Artists

Find out about coloured pencils and coloured pencil art and artists. This leading resource has information on every aspect of coloured pencils for everybody - from experienced artists to improvers and beginners wanting to learn all they can about how to work with coloured pencils.

4. How to pack, post and ship art - Resources for Artists [transferred to How to pack, post and ship art]

How do you pack art? How do you post art? How should you send a painting by post? How do you get artwork to an exhibition - and back again? What are the best packing materials? What are the best methods for different types of art? How do you ship art internationally? How should you pack a painting?

5. Pastels - Resources for Artists

For both new and experienced pastel artists - useful information and advice about: artist grade pastel brands | which are the best pastels | how to use pastels - including tips and techniques | pastel artists | pastels in art history

6. Top 10 Art Galleries and Museums in the World

Find out which are the top ten art galleries and museums in the world - based on visitor numbers in 2013 - and how to visit them in person or virtual reality. Find out the answers to: * Which is the top museum in the world - and year after year? * Which is top art gallery in the USA? *

7. How to write an Artist's Statement - Resources for Artists [transferred to the NEW How to write an Artist's Statement]

An Artist's Statement is essential - but lots of artists dread writing a statement about their art! DO YOU NEED HELP? Do you need a statement for an art competition, an exhibition catalogue, a grant proposal or a website - but not know how to express your art in words?

8. The Best Watercolour Painting Instruction Books

Do you need an instruction book about how to paint in watercolour? Do you want to develop your skills in painting with watercolour? Do you want to find out more about watercolour art and artists who use watercolour?

9. How to sign a painting, drawing or fine art print

What's the best way for an artist to sign a painting? Should you date as well as sign a painting? How should you sign a fine art print? How can you identify the genuine signature of an artist? Where can I see artists signatures?

10. Composition and Design for Artists

Do you want to know more about "the rules" of Composition? Or an explanation of the Principles and Elements of Composition and Design? Have you ever tried to make your artwork more pleasing to the eye? Or wanted to know what makes some paintings draw you in?

11. Online Art Galleries and Stores for Artists

Online galleries offer to help you sell your ORIGINAL ART - but do they actually work? Which is the best and which gets the most traffic? This site provides you with lots of information. So - if you're trying to find out more about online art galleries - this is the site for you!

12. How to Price Your Art - Resources for Artists [transferred to the NEW How to Price your Art]

Check out different approaches to "how to price art". Identify costs that need to be recovered, review different pricing models and factors that influence the setting of prices Many artists ask the question "How should I price my art?" - especially emerging artists getting to grips with the art business

13. How to write an Artist's Resume or CV [transferred to the NEW How to write an Artist's Resume or CV]

How do you summarise your life as an artist in a CV or resume for galleries, exhibitions and potential employment? Do you understand the difference between an artist's CV, artist resume and a bio - and how to write them?

14. The Best Botanical Art Instruction Books [transferring to the NEW The Best Botanical Art Instruction Books]

Learn about botanical art and botanical illustration from the best botanical art instruction books, covering every aspect you need to know about. Read reviews about which are the best botanical art instruction books

15. The Best Art Books - Colour

Read the best books for artists and painters about understanding colour, mixing colours and using colour in paintings. * Find out which are the leading art books about colour. * Read associated art book reviews.

16. The Best Art Books - Composition and Design

Find out which are the best art books about composition and design for art students, leisure painters, improving and advanced artists and art teachers. This site is for those who to learn more about: * composition and design in art * how to draw the eye and lead it around your painting.

17. Print Art on Demand - Resources for Artists

Check out the suppliers of print on demand ( POD ) services for Art Prints / Art Books & Catalogues. Review what artists think of them & traffic to their sites. Find out about: - what is print on demand / publish on demand? - suppliers of print on demand services for art - and reviews

18. The Best Books about Oil Painting

Do you need an instruction book about how to paint in oils? Want to develop your skills in painting with oils? Are you interested in knowing more about oil painting and oil painters? Find out about art instruction books and books about artists painting in oils

19. Art Supplies Around The World - Resources for Artists

Where are the best art shops? If you're an artist and want art supplies while travelling - where should you go? If you want to know the answers to those questions, bookmark this site as I've started an inventory of links to websites and address and contact details for art suppliers recommended by me

20. The Art Business for Artists [see the NEW website Art Business Info. for Artists]

Do you want to know more about the business side of being an artist? Or maybe you're looking for a particular piece of business information for artists? Whether you are an emerging or experienced artist, this site provides you with a link to information and advice about professional development


Marisa Wright said...

Places to host - do you use Adsense or affiliate marketing links? If so, then you're very limited indeed - Blogger is the only option I can recommend, but as you've probably found, creating good navigation for an informational site is a headache.

If you don't use affiliate links, then is the way to go. Very powerful, good navigation, there's even a bit of a community. And if you ever get to the point where you're prepared to spend a bit of money, you can transfer it easily to a site on a host like Hostgator and preserve all your URL's

Marion Boddy-Evans said...

A reliable host will do backups, and you can run Wordpress or other software on it. I use TsoHost. You might contact them and asking about migrating a Squidoo site, they might have suggestions.

Katherine Tyrrell said...

Thanks Marion. I think I might do a post about web hosts

suzeric said...

With you can host for free (money and hussle) but it will again sit on their servers.
If you find a host you can install the free Wordpress software from In this case you can also do AdSense and Affiliate marketing.
I'd recommend playing with first to get a sense how it works and then go for self hosted solution, which gives you more freedom in terms of design. Most important tip when self hosting - install and automated backup that regularly drops a backup either into your email or Dropbox, Amazon Drive or elsewhere that is not the same server.
I've been using for hosting for a long time now.

Robert Prescott said...

Have you looked into the unlimited high speed hosting at Wealthy Affiliate? I have all 5 of my WordPress websites hosted there for the same low price. Plus they offer 100% backed up to the minute, 24/7 monitoring and maintenance and too many other services to list here. If interested check out

i.r. g. said...

Dear Katherine, when considering a host and the ease of posting and classifying your material, please keep in mind the reader. If the host is sending lots and lots of malware as Squidoo does, you might lose readers without knowing why...

Katherine Tyrrell said...

I've NEVER ever in all the years I've been on Squidoo ever heard it associated with malware. I don't know where you got that idea from.

A few times there have been some dodgy adverts which had to be binned and the advertisers ticked off and banned from the site - but that's something that can happen on any website when pre-qualified advertisers "go rogue".

Katherine Tyrrell said...

PS I also did a search on Google and there's no evidence of a problem of malware on Squidoo.

Like I said I'd be very interested to hear your evidence for this supposed problem which I have never heard of.

Do you actually know what you are talking about? I checked your "i.r.g." ID and it's not giving me confidence that you do.

So is this just speculation on your part? Or are you a troll?

i.r. g. said...

I am not a troll and I avoided Squidoo for the past tree years - ever since I had malware problem after visiting it.

Katherine Tyrrell said...

Well I'm sorry to hear that was your experience. However as they say "one swallow does not make a summer". I've certainly not heard of other people having similar problems so can only conclude you were very unlucky.

Carolyn A. Pappas said...

I use Pinboard to keep track of my links. Please note, it is NOT the same as Pinterest. Pinboard is not free, but there is a one time fee and it was about $10.50 if I remember correctly. It is organized similarly to the way the old delicious was though, and while you can tag links according to topic, I don't know if there is a way to group them they way you did with squidoo. It really seems to me that your best option would be a self hosted website (wordpress maybe?). It would give you the most flexibility and you would be in control of the content.