The following is a listing of products or computer services that I personally use, love, and/or recommend.
Ok, so Artisteer is probably my favorite web design software ever! It’s a template creator for WordPress, Joomla, Drupal, DotNetNuke, and Blogger. It has tons of built in options, but what I love most is that I can upload my own designs into the template (including button designs, glare, background images, header images, etc.) to create my own completely customized theme that works great! I’ve created tons of WordPress Themes (including this site) as well as blogger themes with it. You don’t need to know any code to use this product, but as always, knowing code always gives you the most control over any design software. They are constantly improving and adding more features, and they also offer some great forums and support. I’ve more than made the money invested back through this product!
I have used Vista Print for tons of printing needs. They are generally the cheapest way to go in printing and they do a good job with a good turn around. They are almost always running sales, but you just have to weed through all of the extras that they want you to buy.
Before you get something printed, it’s imperative that you proof the colors so that they come out the way that you expect them too. What an image looks like on a computer screen is often not the same as in print even if you are using the correct color profiles to create it. For this reason, make sure you have some good cheap toner cartridges ready for the print jobs. Printing your work or graphic designs is a great way to see how it looks off your monitor.
Mozy is an awesome way to back up your computer quickly, efficiently, and easily without having to buy or keep track of an external hard drive. I’ve been using Mozy since January and love it! If you don’t have a ton on your computer (just emails, music, documents, etc.) you can use the home edition for free. I went ahead and purchased the full version since I have a lot of design software and projects on my computer. For me it’s invaluable to know that these projects are still there in the event my computer crashes, gets stolen, or gets a virus.
If you love sending e-cards but are tired of the same old ones that every one sends, you will love Jacquie Lawson’s site! It does require a small, yearly membership fee, but it is well worth it to have access to hand made (yes, I do mean hand made) e-cards, screen-savers, etc. I’ve had a membership for a year now which was given to me originally as a birthday gift, and I just signed up for automatic renewals myself. These cards, backgrounds, and screen savers are all meticulously hand painted designs that are scanned in to a computer and turned into incredible animations designs tied together with beautiful music. They are continuously putting out new designs, and the image seen here is one of their newest cards. So, check them out, and if you are a friend or family member of mine, you’ll probably be getting one of these cards from me some time.