Archive for June, 2007

Contributor Corner’d – The Weird & Wondrous Gallery_Bizzare

June 19, 2007

J Riddle

Ok, Ok….. I know it’s been more than a month since the last time I posted, but this next contributor that I’ve been able to corner is well worth the wait! Browsing through Gallery_Bizzare’s products is just as stimulating as a trip through wonderland. My favorite part of his gallery would be the KittyBeast & Friends category. Anyways, I hit Gallery_Bizzare up with a barrage of quesitons and this is what he had to say…

Zazzle: Tell us a little about yourself and where you are from.

J.Riddle: I’ve lived in California my entire life; was born and raised in San Luis Obispo County, later moved to Monterey and Santa Cruz counties for many years and currently have lived in Sunnyvale for just over a year. I’ve been creating art for all of my life in some form or another. I spent my 20′s playing drums in several bands, recorded albums, toured the Country quite a bit etc. Eventually I tired of the lifestyle, trained myself using graphic software and got into web development. This is the field I have worked in for nearly a decade now.

Z: Hey, You’re in our neck of the woods! So I take it the weather is probably about the same. How is it today in Sunnyvale?

JR: Hot, although not as bad as yesterday. I’m not a big sun-worshipper so I make it a habit to seek out shade or AC when available. I have not fully adjusted to this heat in the Valley yet. Of course, everything is relative, but coming from Monterey where the weather is almost always mild this was quite a shock.

Z: Where do you get inspiration from for your weird & wondrous product designs?

JR: Most of my early work originated entirely from the dark recesses of my imagination. As I’ve gotten older I now incorporate techniques that I’ve picked up working in graphic design to make analog/digital hybrid art. Of course I am influenced by the work of others that I have encountered throughout virtually every different type of art-form and media, from fine art to the advertising world. The bulk of my inspiration though remains based in whatever random ideas I happen to snag out of the ether.

Z: Are you an animal person or vegetable person? (pets vs garden)?

JR: I hate to be a fence-sitter on this one but I really am both. I have two cats, a large aquarium of fish and frogs and care for dozens of plants (and one particularly beautiful potted Japanese maple).

Z: What other interests do you have besides art?

JR: Hmmm, well that’s rough as most of my interests involve art in some way.
I have to admit I’m quite a video game addict as well. Aside from such selfish pursuits, I enjoy spending time with friends and family, gardening, the usual stuff.

Z: Where do you design your work? Spare Room, Garage, Outside?

JR: My wife is an artist as well, so our garage acts as a makeshift studio. We have all our easels, paints, canvases, etc there. All our digital work is done in our office on dual computers that sit side-by-side. Of course, when it comes to drawing that occurs just about anywhere and everywhere.

Z: What’s the best ‘design’ product that you have seen out there? And don’t say the ‘iPod’ or ‘iFone’.

JR: Personally I think the coolest/best designed new product I’ve seen would have to be Microsoft Surface. I blogged about the “future of interactive computing” many months ago when the actual inventors of the technology showcased their work and made videos available to the public. I think this has revolutionary potential to completely change the way we interface with computers.

Z: If there were no budget constraints what would you want the next Zazzle customizable product to be?

JR: If there was a way we could produce 3D plush or vinyl toys I would really go to town making all manner of twisted characters. (Collect all 6,000 Gallery Bizarre Action Figures!) Of course this is utterly unrealistic, but you asked.

Z: Nothing is unrealistic my friend… nothing…

Z: Who are some of your favorite Zazzle contributors?

JR: Disclaimer alert: My top two happen to be my wife’s galleries. No, she didn’t make me say that and yes I really do love her work, but clearly I could be considered biased. If anyone is interested, you can check out her Tiny Citizens site at zazzle.com/dnizzle and zazzle.com/plainbrownwrapper. I’ve found there are a lot of tremendous artists on Zazzle and being part of that community is one of the reasons that I decide to go with Zazzle’s particular solution. Other top artists I admire would include justinaerni, mykajelina, leannem…really too many others to name.

Z: What advice do you have to new Zazzle Contributors?

JR: I’m pretty new myself, but so far I would have to say that I recommend making a habit of visiting other contributer’s galleries, see who’s winning awards, what products are hot. There is a lot of amazing work out there and you may just find mutual fans or even customers if you take the time to let them know you enjoy their work.

Z: Peanut Butter & Jam or Ham & Cheese?

JR: PB& J. Heavy on the peanut butter, light on the jam, please.

Z: PC or Mac?

JR: My wife and I have used both pc’s and macs for many, many years both in our professional work and at home for freelance or personal projects. Our current setup is her with the G5 and I use a heavily upgraded Dell. Wacom tablets are an absolute must for any serious digital artist, in my opinion. At work I use a G4, a G5 and two PCs. Blasphemy, I know.

Z: To you, what is more funny, Ikea’s Swedish meatballs or Canadian bacon on a Hawaiian Pizza?

JR: I’ll have to go with the Canadian bacon on Hawaiian pizza. That is pretty ridiculous, come to think of it. :]

Z: What’s the coolest place you’ve ever gone out side of your country?

JR: Sadly I haven’t traveled out of country as much as I would’ve liked. So my answer so far would have to be Vancouver B.C. I just absolutely love it up there.

Z: What do you do when you’re bored?

JR: Boredom indicates a lack of imagination. Truthfully, at this stage in my life I am always way too busy for boredom. When in doubt, create something.

Z: Well, that’s about does it. Did you have any final thoughts?

JR: Thanks for welcoming me to the Zazzle community and for featuring my work on your blog. It’s very much appreciated!

Check out all of Bizarre_Gallery’s weird and wondrous products:

http://www.zazzle.com/Gallery_Bizarre

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New “Remix This!” Blowin’ Up in the Forums

June 18, 2007

In case you haven’t already seen this thread in the forums, then you definitely need the update. We’ve started a fun photoshop-tennis-ish type of thing in the forums called Remix This! – i.e. we’re going to post a pic every week and request y’all to post fun/whacky/creative/bizarre/etc. derivatives of it.

The first one began last Friday with a picture of Ed, one of the engineers on the elite ZUI (Zazzle User Interface) team and frequent contributor to the Zazzle Tech Blog. You may also recognize him from a recent homepage mantle image (ya, that crazy guy wearing like 50 ties for Father’s Day):

Ed

And people have been downloading the pic and remixing it, which basically means tossing Ed into absurd situations, poses, and even animations. Do I need to say anything more? Thought not. Check out all of the remixes and ADD YOUR OWN!!

Here are my favorite remixes, thus far:

ghetto Ed

star wars ed

bull ride ed

star wars ed

The icing on the cake…
ed animation

You should add your own, unless you don’t think you’re man/woman enough for the task, well do ya? Yeah, that is a challenge… BRING THE PAIN!

(Also, this is going to be a weekly thing, so do the crtl+D on that page, cause it’s gonna be hot.)

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A Lucky Day Later

June 15, 2007

Lucky Day Later Brand spankin’ new Zazzle Contributor A Lucky Day Later performed at the Phoenix Theater in Petaluma last Friday and it rocked. Zazzle was there in support of ALDL, and to rock out like nobody was watching (I dabbled in the mosh pit that developed halfway into the set), but unfortunately we didn’t have RobCam, so there aren’t many pics.

Anyway, this theater has a rich and colorful history, notable acts such as Blink 182 and Sublime have graced the Phoenix stage and now with ALDL playing there, the very first Zazzle act has graced the stage (look for their CD to go triple platinum within the week).

img_4351.jpg img_4354.jpg img_4360.jpg img_4379.jpg

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Dancing with the Stars: Sweepstakes & Contest!

June 14, 2007

dwts_mantle.jpg

Sweepstakes:

Dancing with the Stars just finished a great third season and we know many of you don’t want the dancing to stop. The Dancing with the Stars tour is kicking off in a few weeks and one lucky person is going to win a free trip to the July 6th performance in Atlantic City! Performers include Joey Fatone and Kym Johnson, Drew Lachey and Cheryl Burke, and more!

Visit the contest page to learn more and enter.
The submission deadline is 11:59 PM (PST) on June 24, 2007.


Contest:

In addition to the sweepstakes, we also wanted to give all of you creative folks out there a chance to make some awesome designs!

  • Theme: Products that make you want to cut a rug, drop it likes it’s hot, get down, and basically just scream “YEAH!” So put on your dancing shoes and lace ‘em up tight like John Travolta in “Saturday Night Fever” because the competition is tight and you gotta get going now to do the Charleston with class. Some examples for inspiration include breakdance, Move My Body, Disco Queen, dance macabre and ice princess.
  • Contest Prize! $1,000.00 USD – COLD HARD CASH: whatever you want to do with it

Visit the contest page to learn more and enter. View Entries »
The submission deadline is 11:59 PM (PST) on July 1st, 2007.

Zazzle Wall Art: Section One complete

June 14, 2007

akayo1
The first of the Zazzle Waller masterpieces is complete! Check out RobCam shots of the work in a nifty Flickr slideshow! Look closely and you can see Akayo1‘s inclusion of muni transfer tickets (SF’s bus line), Rob’s parking tickets (he thinks he can park anywhere), comic strips, and much more. Another reason to check out the slideshow is to get inspired to design your own wall for Zazzle (we have lots of bare ones), then submit your ideas in the forum! Who knows, maybe you too will be painting the next MASTERPIECE at Zazzle (yup, even you international folks can get involved)!

From Jeff, one of Zazzle’s co-founders:

On behalf of the entire Zazzle team, thank you, Akayo1! You set the bar very high for the next Wallers. It’s truly inspiring to walk by your mural everyday… you’ve made our new home here much more zazzleicious.

Alrighty, if you haven’t already seen it, what are you waiting for?! Here ya go:

View the slideshow »

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Dancing with the Stars: Sweepstakes & Contest!

June 13, 2007

dwts_mantle.jpg


Note: the contest is now over. Learn more about the winning design.

Contest:

In addition to the sweepstakes below, we also wanted to give all of you creative folks out there a chance to make some awesome designs!

  • Theme: Products that make you want to cut a rug, drop it likes it’s hot, get down, and basically just scream “YEAH!” So put on your dancing shoes and lace ‘em up tight like John Travolta in “Saturday Night Fever” because the competition is tight and you gotta get going now to do the Charleston with class. Some examples for inspiration include breakdance, Move My Body, Disco Queen, dance macabre and ice princess.
  • Contest Prize! $1,000.00 USD – COLD HARD CASH: whatever you want to do with it

View Entries » | Go Create » (only one entry per person)

How to Enter:

  1. Create your design and place it on a product (can be any type). Make your product.
  2. Publish your product to the Zazzle marketplace with the tag “DancingContest2007” (find out how to tag your product). If you have already published your design prior to the start of this contest, simply add the tag “DancingContest2007” to submit it.
  3. You’re almost done! To give yourself added publicity, don’t forget to leave a comment below with a link to the product page of your entry.

Note: Submission deadline is 11:59 PM (PST) on July 1st, 2007. Learn more about the contest.

IMPORTANT: You may only enter one design (on one product) to the contest. You may NOT enter the same design on multiple products and you may NOT enter multiple designs. If you do, only your first entry will be eligible to win. View the contest rules.


Sweepstakes:

** Note: the sweepstakes is now over and no more entries will be accepted. However, the CONTEST is still active with a submission deadline of July 1st, 2007.**

Dancing with the Stars just finished a great third season and we know many of you don’t want the dancing to stop. The Dancing with the Stars tour is kicking off in a few weeks and one lucky person is going to win a free trip to the July 6th performance in Atlantic City! Performers include Joey Fatone and Kym Johnson, Drew Lachey and Cheryl Burke, and more!

This prize includes:

  • 2 Round trip tickets to Atlantic City
  • Round trip ground transportation from airport to hotel
  • 2 Night stay at a hotel
  • 2 Tickets to the Dancing with the Stars performance

How to Enter:

  • (Note: The sweepstakes is now finished). Send an email to (removed) with (i) your Zazzle username, OR (ii) your full legal name, your street address, and your email address with the subject line DANCING WITH THE STARS SWEEPSTAKES ENTRY. That’s it!!

The submission deadline is 11:59 PM (PST) on June 24, 2007. View the sweepstakes rules.


Dancing With The Stars – The Tour

THE PERFORMERS

Joey Fatone and Kym Johnson
Drew Lachey and Cheryl Burke
Joey McIntyre and Julianne Hough
Joey Lawrence and Edyta Sliwinska
Louis Van Amstel
Alec Mazo

DATE , CITY – VENUE

June 20 , Austin, TX – Frank Erwin Center, buy tickets
June 22 , Dallas, TX – American Airlines Center, buy tickets
June 23 , Baton ROUGE, LA – River Center, buy tickets
June 25, Orlando, FL – Amway Arena, buy tickets
June 26, Miami, FL – American Airlines Arena, buy tickets
June 28 , Columbia, SC – Colonial Center, buy tickets
June 29 , Charlotte, NC – Bobcats Arena, buy tickets
June 30 , Raleigh, NC – RBC Center, buy tickets
July 2, Hershey, PA – GIANT Center, buy tickets
July 3 , Bridgeport, CT – Arena at Harbor Yard, buy tickets
July 5 , Wilkes Barre, PA – Wachovia Arena, buy tickets
July 6 , Atlantic City, NJ – Boardwalk Hall, buy tickets
July 7 , Uncasville, CT – Mohegan Sun, buy tickets
July 8 , Uncasville, CT – Mohegan Sun, buy tickets
July 10, Ottawa, ON – Scotiabank Place, buy tickets
July 11 Hamilton, ON – Copps Coliseum, buy tickets
July 13 Buffalo, NY – HSBC Arena, buy tickets
July 14 Grand Rapids, MI – Van Andel Arena, buy tickets
July 15 Peoria, IL – Peoria Civic Center, buy tickets
July 16 Green Bay, WI – Resch Center, buy tickets
July 18 Winnipeg, MB – MTS Centre, buy tickets
July 20 Saskatoon, SK – Credit Union Centre, buy tickets
July 21 Edmonton, AB – Rexall Place, buy tickets
July 22 Calgary, AB – Pengrowth Saddledome, buy tickets
July 24 Vancouver, BC – GM Place, buy tickets

Gallery tip – comment wall and product filters

June 12, 2007

Gallery comment wall with two new tabs

We’re constantly working to improve your experience on Zazzle and this often times includes a lot of iteration. We’re always excited to launch big new features and changes on the site and we also like to make small tweaks that sometimes can go unnoticed. Recently, the gallery wall was changed to include two new tabs, shown in the screenshot below.

We launched the gallery wall last summer and we’ve seen many users using it as a way to share feedback and also leave notes for their fellow users. The comment wall has existed on product pages for a few years and it’s been great to see the frequency and types of comments changing over time. What was lacking, however, was an easy way to understand what was being said across all of your products. With the two new tabs, we hope you will find it easier to share your thoughts, provide feedback and inspire others.

Updating your profile

The Zazzle Inzider wanted to give everyone the tip that they should update their “about” pages. This page is a great way to introduce yourself to the Zazzle community and also put a face to your name. More updates to come over the next several weeks … stay tuned! For some example about pages that look really good, check out Alejandro and yanmos.

Obama: The Musical

June 11, 2007

Awesome Video and the shirt in the middle was made by our very own contributor ismyhomeboy.

Here’s the Vid:

Here’s the Shirt:

Barack Obama is my Homeboy

BAM! Check out a ton of other great political t-shirts and such in the Zazzle Election Center.

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Winner of Dads and Grads contest

June 10, 2007

Drum roll please … and we have a winner!! Two actually!! A Crown for Dad t-shirt by SBCSTUDIO from Connecticut, USA was the winner in the Father’s Day category and Class of 2007 Graduation t-shirt by Mariah (buttonZup) from USA was the winner in the Graduation category. Congrats to both of you! We had 100+ submissions to the contest and some of the runner-up designs are listed below along with the two winning designs.

Winners!

Runner-up Designs

Winner of Dads and Grads contest

June 10, 2007

Drum roll please … and we have a winner!! Two actually!! A Crown for Dad t-shirt by SBCSTUDIO from Connecticut, USA was the winner in the Father’s Day category and Class of 2007 Graduation t-shirt by Mariah (buttonZup) from USA was the winner in the Graduation category. Congrats to both of you! We had 100+ submissions to the contest and you can check out more details at the contest center.

Winners!


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