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Making Some Updates – Why and Whats Next

For you loyal readers, you may notice that things have been cleaned up here on Broken Paintbrush.

introspection-review

The Why

Since I haven’t been able to put paint to brush for a few weeks (or a few more weeks to come) I have been thinking of what’s the point of this site – a sort of personal retrospection.

I started this blog nearly 6 years ago to showcase my growing Iron Warriors army, and while I haven’t posted consistently (only 210 posts over those 6 years), I have been trying to improve the quality with each iteration.

This year I have been working on the user experience on the site – loading time, quality pictures, and page navigation. While I liked the previous theme and its focus on images, it just took way too long to load and I kept having issues with sections not loading at all.

The new theme is more minimal and has more focus on loading speeds, in part because I removed all the side bar widgets as well.

But the blog rolls?

Among the items I removed from the side bar was all the blog rolls and other awesome sites. This isn’t because I don’t like blog rolls, I think they are awesome – but mine were completely disorganized and cluttered.

So while I have removed them for now, I am researching tools and widgets that can create nice looking, and helpful blog rolls that showcase all the sites I really enjoy.

The Ads

Hello, my name is Joe B. and I used ads on my site.

To be honest I never expected to make millions on ads, but I had the delusion that everyone would love ads on my site and I could pay for a few models now and then.

This was a fail-fail. Over the last year I earned a grand total of $7.37 from ads, which could get what, a White Dwarf or two? In the mean time I have contributed to the horribleness that is the ad-covered internet.

Made no money and alienated potential readers. I lost sight of why I made this blog and nobody won. So part of my cleanup is the removal of all adds.

What’s Next

For the future of Broken Paintbrush, I am asking for your help. I am committing the next year of this site to giving back to the hobby community in the following ways:

  1. Tutorials – I am planning on many more tutorials over the next year, including breaking out some videos. From planning, building, and painting models (end-to-end), specific round ups (like rust, bone, jewels), and painting basics. I’m not doing this because I’m an expert (far from it), but because the best way to learn is by teaching.
  2. Show Case – This used to be for me to do virtual bragging of what I’ve accomplished. While this won’t change much (we all like to be proud of our work) I hope to focus on inspiring others and giving ideas for their own models.
  3. Cool Tools – I will continue this series, but am going to improve the format to include tutorials on how I use the tools, what problem they can solve, and various alternatives. The right tool can help us improve our painting and hobby experience so I hope to find the best ones and share them with you.
  4. Good Reads – I like the concept of this series (sharing awesome articles from other bloggers) but it is very difficult to keep up on a regular basis. I will be doing some thinking and research on how to make this easier for me and more beneficial for you. I may change it to something like a blog of the week, or just move it to twitter as I find things.

So as I get set back up and start painting again, I am asking for some accountability from you – help keep me honest as to why I am doing this blog. If you see me doing something sketch, dishonest, or just plain not cool, call me out on it – I would rather have my feelings hurt by some honest feedback than quietly lose readers.

Thank you and here is to another new age of Broken Paintbrush,

Joe B.

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