Tag Archives: Blogging

Creating an avatar image with gravatar

Heather Goff

Ever wonder why images or photographs sometimes appear next to people’s comments on blogs?  Those images are called avatars, and it is really easy to create an avatar image for yourself. You, too, can have a photograph or icon that will follow your comments around the internet.

Why would you want to do that? For branding, and to call attention to your comments. You don’t need to use a portrait. You could use your logo, for example.

Below, I am going to walk you through, step by step, how to create your custom avatar image using gravatar.com.

  1. The first thing to do is to have an image on your computer that you want to use. I used a photograph taken of me by Lynn Christoffers – a Martha’s Vineyard Photographer.It doesn’t have to be square. Gravatar will let you crop it once you upload it.
  2. Step two: Go to http://www.gravatar.com
  3. Step 3: Click on the “Sign up now” link. (view image below)gravatar12

  4. Step 4: Enter the email address that you want your avatar image associated with. (see image below)gravatar21
  5. Step 5: They will send you a confirmation email.
    Click on the link in the confirmation email to activate your account. (see images below)
    gravatar3

    gravatar4

  6. You will then be directed to a page that will ask you where the image is that you want to upload.gravatar51

  7. Choose where it is. Search for the image and upload it.
  8. You will then be able to crop it to be the perfect avatar image.

    gravatar7

  9. When you’re done cropping, you will be asked to rate it based on the image content.gravatar8

  10. The final step is to assign the image to your email address. Just check the box next to the email address that you want to associate with the avatar, and click on the “use for selected address” button. Then you’re done. It is that easy.
    gravatar9

You can log into gravatar at any time to update your avatar images or add new email addresses.

Working with slideshowpro in wordpress.

Today I had the good fortune of speaking with a new designer/photographer/videographer  that I will be collaborating on a website with. I mean “new” in that this will be the first time I have worked with them. They introduced me to slideshowpro, and we want to create a wordpress website that embeds slideshowpro photo and video slide shows.

I am always fired up when I learn about a new tool, and slideshowpro is really exciting. I immediately purchased it so that I could play with it.

Get Adobe Flash player

I purchased the slideshowpro for flash ($39), and the CMS slideshowpro director ($39). My server will work with slideshowpro director, if any of my clients are interested, however, if you are going to be making tons of video slide shows, I recommend the slideshowpro hosting for the CMS, because you won’t have to worry about bandwidth, and it is really reasonable.

  1. Step one in getting slideshowpro up and running on my wordpress blog was to install the director on my website server. This was pretty straight forward.  You ftp the files to the server, and then browse to them. The installation process through the web browser walks  you through any permissions that you need to update. It will prompt you to manually create a .xml file called crossdomain.xml, it will tell you exactly what to copy and paste into that file,  and upload that to your root directory, which I did with bbedit.
  2. Step two was to create an album in the director and upload photos to it. I uploaded pictures from a walk I took on a landbank trail in Chilmark, just two days ago. I then copied the path generated to that albums .xml file to paste into the flash file parameters.
  3. Step three was to install the slideshowpro extension into my flash cs3 and then create a new flash file.
  4. Step four was to plug in the path to the album’s .xml file generated by the album, and also to choose that the .xml file is a director generated file, publish the .swf file and ftp it to my server.
  5. Step five was to install the plug-in Kimili flash embed tag generator into my wordpress blog, and click on its icon to add the new .swf files path, size etc.   I made sure to add the base=”.” parameter to the embed tag. I found the instructions here.
  6. The results of my efforts are at the top of the page.

I am pretty excited to learn more about the slideshowpro customization and parameters.