TTLB Logo Contest Starts Now

Ok, folks, here’s the scoop on the new logo contest. I’m soliciting submissions as of now, as follows:
What are you looking for?
A new logo / header graphic which will be part of an overall site redesign for TTLB.
What’s the prize?
The winner will receive two months of free advertising on TTLB.
How will the winner be chosen?
Purely by my own subjective choice, although I will consider feedback from the TTLB community as well.
Is the contest-winning logo guaranteed to be used on TTLB?
No. I will definitely select a winner of the contest to receive the two-months advertising prize, but if even that submission doesn’t quite measure up to what I’m looking for, I may not elect to actually use it on the site. If I do want to use it, I’ll be prepared to discuss reasonable compensation (beyond the 2-month prize) of either actual cash or additional advertising time for full rights to use the logo.
I’m an artist with an extremely fragile ego and will be really offended if you don’t like my work. Should I submit an entry?
Probably not. I’m damned picky, and this is an extremely subjective and personal choice. I’m sure there will be submissions that are quite skillfully done which just won’t match my vision or style that I will have to turn down. If this prospect upsets you, it might be best not to play.
Will the entries be publicly posted?
Yes. I will be setting up a gallery of submissions that will be updated as they come in, and will include a link to your home blog / web site with your submission. The gallery will also be linked from the top of the Ecosystem page. In this way, simply by participating in the contest, you can be assured that you will receive some visibility and publicity for your work.
When are entries due by?
The deadline is tentatively set for Friday, May 13th (oooooh). But the sooner you submit an entry, the longer it will be up in the gallery and the more visibility you will get.
Enough with the contest rules already. What exactly are you looking for in the logo itself?
Ah, now the fun stuff. I am looking for a header-style graphic that would span the top of the new TTLB pages (as opposed to the current, square logo). It should include the text “The Truth Laid Bear” somewhere: I am open to suggestions on an appropriate font (don’t feel tied to the current Timesy look, because it is going away with the redesign). And let me be clear that I like (love) the current bear logo. The idea of the new logo is not to ditch the bear, but to re-present him in a different setting / pose.
The new TTLB site design is meant to show TTLB as a guide to the blogosphere, and I want the new logo to reflect that. I’m very partial, therefore, to the idea of showing our bear poring over maps, or a globe, or other such images to reflect the idea of “navigation”. My favorite concept thus far is to show the bear at his desk, facing 3/4 away from us, staring at a big world map with little pinpoints somehow representing blogs being tracked around the world. I am open, however, to other suggestions.
But wait: there’s more. For the bear, I do not want any major changes in the character design or look. I like the bear; don’t mess with the bear. But there is a new character that needs designing: my bride, Lady M.
That’s right, it is time to give a true blogospheric incarnation to my beloved, who has labored behind-the-scenes in support of TTLB (and in particular, me) for so long. So if I manifest as a polar bear online, what does Lady M look like?
A cute, female squirrel, as it turns out. We like this squirrel, to give you an idea on the kind of look we are looking for. Cute, feminine — a little sexy is OK too. A lady of sophistication, elegance, and beauty: but a little on the silly side, too.
Lady M should be integrated into the overall logo, working with Mr. Bear on the serious task of tracking blogs across the world. One idea is, if you go with the wall-map concept, to have Lady M perched on a ladder in front of the map, adding push-pins or somesuch to the map to represent new blogs.
I have questions; how do I get answers?
Please post all questions as comments here, and I’ll reply publicly, so that information can be shared with all.
And with that, let the games begin! I look forward to your submissions…

TTLB Logo Contest

I’m in the process of planning a major redesign for TTLB, and one component I simply can’t do myself (due to lack of talent) is the creation of a new logo.
So, I’m looking for help. I am quite willing to pay real money (or provide TTLB advertising) for this work, but I want to ensure that I’m truly getting a product that both I and TTLB’s users will be impressed with. Therefore: a contest.
I will be putting out a call for submissions of a new logo designed to my specifications this weekend, along with process details.
More will follow, but if you are interested in participating, or have an artist you would recommend I invite to participate, please title=”N.Z. Bear”>drop me a line. Thanks!

Happy New Pope!

I haven’t had much to say on the selection of the new Pope. As a non-practicing agnostic, to me, the fanfare of the past few days has been roughly equivalent to learning that the Marlins have found a new star pitcher: it’s not just that they’re not my team, I don’t even particularly follow the sport.
But that said, the course and fate of what is arguably the most successful organization in the history of humanity can’t help but be important on a planetary scale, so I wish Benedict XVI the best, and congratulate Catholics worldwide. I also proffer two bits of advice for the new pontiff:
1) Get a new publicist, like, right now. We’ve all heard the expectation-setting pre-spin that you’re not going to be as telegenic a Pope as JP was, but that doesn’t mean you have to let people publish photos of you that make you like a vampire.
2) If you see Andrew Sullivan, cross the street.

The honeymoon is over…

…but the marriage is still a fine and wonderful thing!
Well, I’m back, rested, and ready (“tanned” would be inaccurate… ever see a tan polar bear?) from a lovely diversion with Mrs. Bear to Maui and Kauai for our honeymoon. A sampling of the lovely scenery we enjoyed is above; if I get real ambitious-like I might even put up one of them there photo-blog thingies.
In celebration of my return, I’ve started re-activating TTLB functionality. Search is now re-enabled, as is registration for new weblogs. No promises that everything is back to perfect yet; that will be the task for the next few days and weeks.
Thanks to everyone who offered their congratulations and best wishes, and to all for your continued patience. TTLB is back in business: stay tuned as I continue to bring us back up to speed, and beyond…
Update: As threatened, I’ve added a photoblog of our trip. Select ‘More’ to enjoy…

Continue reading “The honeymoon is over…”

Mrs. Bear and Mr. M

Rumours of my demise have been highly exaggerated. Better than ever, in fact, as I am pleased to report that a mere week ago today, the lovely Lady M officially became Mrs. Bear.
For the next week or so I will still be in post-wedding mode, but shortly thereafter life — and functionality — will return to normal around TTLB. Patience, and thanks to all for your understanding while I neglect matters of the blog to properly address matters of the heart…