I Actually Won Something!

I’m the first runner-up in The Sandbox Designs Competition with my entry, Essay! Two judges even had me pegged for first place! Wow! As you may recall, part of my impetus for blogging was to learn something about web design (I’m a graphic artist in the real world) so I’m just absolutely thrilled. There were a lot of original and creative submissions and I’m honored just to be included among them. Many thanks to the judges β€” all of whom I have a ton of respect for β€” and the awesome Scott Wallick, co-designer of the Sandbox theme and organizer of the competition.

If you think I’m anxious about reading, just imagine me for a moment logged-in to the sndbx.org site continually pressing F5 in one browser tab and pressing F5 in another tab that shows the current UTC time, desperately waiting for the results to come in, hoping my heart doesn’t crawl up my throat and fall out my mouth. I think it’ll take me a little time to calm down.

But what did you win, Ian? Well, the big immaterial thing was encouragement β€” but as for actual physical goods? Fifty dollars US and a copy of Blogging Tips: What Bloggers Won’t Tell You About Blogging by Lorelle VanFossen (that’s the lorelle.wordpress.com Lorelle). Feel free to enjoy the hilarious irony of the book-blogger winning a book on blogging for his blog design.

At my wife’s clever suggestion I’m going to blow the money on books at Amazon. Anxiety: what should I get? Should I get a million Dover Thrift Editions or throw it away on some hard-backed new release? Will you all be upset with me if I surf the dollar specials? Or would you expect anything less? Just what can I get for $50?

20 responses to “I Actually Won Something!”

  1. Sadish says:

    Congrats Man. I liked your design too !

  2. Scott says:

    Sadish is well right. You produced my kind of design and I was glad to see it do well. Pat yourself on the back. Now go and pat everyone else on the back!

    He he. πŸ™‚ Congrats, Ian.

  3. clemens says:

    Yes. Congratulation. I am not sure what Sandbox IS, but your entry was great. I read some of the advice on Lorelle’s page and realized that I am not doing any of it! And don’t think I will try. But I am impressed that you ranked so high.

    You and Elliot should go out and celebrate. He can pay for the drinks.

  4. Will says:

    Congrats Ian! I really liked Essay πŸ˜€

    I had you have time between reading all of those $1 specials to release another design soon!

  5. Hillary says:

    I too really liked Essay….but prefer the irreverence of this page. No one ever does red, black and wedgewood blue! With the upside-down graphic, it has an effect of being charming and upsetting at once, which is exactly what a designer wants, isn’t it?

  6. Will says:

    I second Hillary’s comments. I wonder if you could have entered the design here into the competition since you never released it.

  7. Dawn says:

    Congratulations! I liked Essay too.

    If you buy the Dover Thrift, then you can tell us what you bought and why. More fodder for blogging.

  8. Ian Stewart says:

    Thanks, Everyone!

    Sadish, my wife (also a graphic artist) loves your design sense β€” me too β€” and it means a lot that you stopped by. Thanks!

    Thanks, Scott! (Did I ever mention that I downloaded and tried out your themes when I first moved to WordPress?)

    Clemens, I distinctly remember you railing against the recommended length of blog posts once, so I’m not surprised. πŸ™‚ Now, where’s Elliot with my pints? He’s probably too busy wondering where his Holy Heroes!! design is…

    Thanks, Hillary, you nailed my design goals right on the head!

    Thanks, Will (Will won second place!). The way I interpreted the rules I didn’t think it would be fair to enter my own existing design. Plus, all I can see are it’s flaws now. But I appreciate all the nice things everyone has to say about it.

    Thanks, Dawn. More fodder for blogging was exactly my wife’s idea.

    And everyone new, welcome to Upper Fort Stewart.

  9. Imani says:

    Woohoo! Congrats, Ian. I always love the results when you tinker with the blog.

  10. Elliot says:

    Yeah, where IS that Holy Heroes design?! πŸ˜‰

  11. ted says:

    Hey! Congrats! I like “Essay,” but this blog’s design blows it out of the water.

  12. ia says:

    Congratulations! Great design—plus I love the look of your website. (I definitely agree with Ted.) ^_^

  13. Bob says:

    Congrats Ian! Good work and great theme πŸ™‚

  14. Ian Stewart says:

    Alright, a “Woohoo!” Thanks, Imani!

    Elliot, I should have a working draft this week or next. I am glad I’m so late though. It gives me a chance to see how everyone uses the site. That’s Holy Heroes!! by the way, you should all check it out.

    Thanks, Ted and Ia (and congratulations yourself Ia!) comments like that make me feel a little better about leaving my page styling alone.

    Thanks, Bob. I really like your minimalist themes β€” esp. the BlogOhBlog theme.

  15. pearl says:

    hey Ian.. Congrats… I like essay and I am glad it won… now you can share some of those blogging tips on here with us? πŸ™‚

    and I think I’ve always told you I love this theme a lot….

    tc and kit

  16. […] Ho cambiato la grafica del sito con quella che vedi (se ci leggi via feed, dai un’occhiata alla home). Si basa su Sandbox ed Essay di Ian Stewart. […]

  17. […] For those who are into that sort of thing we’re using a Sandbox theme called Essay (thanks Ian Stewart) but we’ve hacked it about so much we’ve destroyed its essential integrity whih was its […]

  18. paul says:

    Great theme, Ian. I’ve been looking for something clean and this is the one. Found you through the Sandbox competition.

  19. The theme… says:

    […] of “WordPress” and “Sandbox”. The basic ideas for my theme come from Ian Stewart from upper fort stewart, who designed Essay, a skin for “Sandbox” for the Sandbox […]

  20. […] been thinking about how people make web sites using WordPress for roughly 10 years now. I think that’s a fairly long time but for most of that time I was only thinking about how people […]

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