Tuesday, May 15, 2012

Down the Foxhole - ActiveDen

Down the Foxhole - ActiveDen

Link to Envato Notes

AudioJungle: imitation, pastiches and copying

Posted: 15 May 2012 03:38 PM PDT

Recently at Envato, we’ve been posting about various copyright and intellectual property issues.

We’ve now created a new KnowledgeBase article to help AudioJungle authors better understand what is and what is not acceptable on AudioJungle when it comes to ‘pastiche’ (imitation) recordings. You’ll find it here:

AudioJungle and Pastiche (Imitation) Tracks

AudioJungle authors, please take moment to read this article! The main points are that you are not allowed to directly copy, imitate or reproduce copyrighted audio recordings for your AudioJungle tracks. But it is permissible to incorporate general music styles into your composition.

It’s sometimes hard to know where to draw the line, so there’s more guidance in the article.

Remember, marketplace authors are always legally responsible for the content they submit to our marketplaces. Infringement of copyright may result in item disablement or in the worst case, account disablement for repeated violations of our Content Policy.

Existing AudioJungle items that don’t meet these requirements will be disabled if we become aware of them. So we ask all AudioJungle authors to review your entire portfolio and remove items that don’t meet copyright requirements.

If you have questions or comments on existing AudioJungle items (yours, or other author’s), please don’t share links here or on our forums. Instead, contact support here.

Happy composing!

OS X Update 10.7.4 Address a Number of Issues, Fixed FileVault Bug

Posted: 15 May 2012 03:05 AM PDT

OS X just got a new update and it looks like it fixes a lot of recent problems with the operating system, including that FileVault security issue.

This version of OS X comes with fixes to the “Reopen windows when logging back in” setting, the compatibility with certain third-party USB keyboard, the ability to copy files to SMB servers, and the issue that may prevent files from being saved to a server. It also looks as if the update fixes the FileVault security issue that a previous update brought along.

Check the following links for information about the update, and the security content of the update.

The 10.7.4 update is recommended for all OS X Lion users and includes general operating system fixes that improve the stability, compatibility, and security of your Mac

Source: Engadget

Author Interview: Ciolca

Posted: 15 May 2012 01:00 AM PDT

Being a Mac addict, working for Australian newspapers from Romania, adapting actual magazines and newspapers into templates, and getting freelance work because of his marketplace portfolio. This week we meet Catalin Daniel Ciolca (ciolca) from GraphicRiver.

Tell us a bit about yourself. Where are you from, what do you do for a living?

Hi, I am a freelance Graphic Designer from Romania. (That is somewhere in Eastern Europe in case you don’t know. :) ) I am 44 years old, two kids and a Macintosh addict. :)

Not surprisingly, what I do for living is exactly what I do for Envato, meaning print-related jobs. I’m doing a monthly magazine, two weekly newspapers (both Australian, by the way) and a lot of occasional jobs also print related. And of course, I can truly say that I am doing also GraphicRiver for living. :)

Which marketplaces do you belong to? What types of files do you sell?

GraphicRiver. I am selling only print-related files. This is what I know, this is what I do. :)

How did you get started? Have you had any formal training?

My GraphicRiver start was more like a joke. I was already freelancing by the time I started. I was doing a weekly Australian newspaper since about half a year but I didn’t looked specifically for other freelancing websites. And never heard about Envato.

I found out about GraphicRiver during one summer day when I bumped into two former work colleagues and went for a beer. When they asked me what I was doing I thought I might make a strong impression on them by saying: “Well, I am a freelancer working from home with Australia.” To my surprise they were about to fell off their chairs laughing.

Finally they told me: “You know, we are doing the very same thing!” And they told me about GraphicRiver and all the stuff. I wasn’t too much impressed but I thought I might give it a try.

Went home, made a user account on GraphicRiver (and hassled a bit with the author interview), assembled quickly a 24 page magazine from one of my previous projects, submitted and… forgot about it. My wife reminded me after a few hours to check if something happened. It did. It sold twice! And I said wow! That is quite something to consider.

Regarding my training I am a Journalism University graduate but what I am doing now is the result of more than 12 years of expertise. Except for Advertising Agencies, I have worked for a lot of newspapers and magazines and with a lot of editorial teams and styles. So, yes, I had formal training. And a pretty good one. :)

Describe your home workspace.

As I said before, I am an Apple Macintosh addict (my wife would say fanatic). I have quite an orchard at home. In my particular field of work (newspapers and magazines) I have found working on Macs a far superior experience than with Windows (I have worked both so I know).

Of course, it is also a matter of preference but there are a lot of productivity advances that Macs have over PCs. To mention only the ability to color a file or a folder. A trivial but extremely important feature. It saves you a lot of time and effort when you color green, for instance, 55 print PDF files that were sent to the printer out of the total of 124. (I should get paid by Apple for evangelizing their stuff. :) ) )

Another advantage of using Macs is that I save a lot of space. I am using a 27 inch quad core iMac which is actually just the monitor and which fits neatly on my desktop. It is also an extremely powerful machine to handle all the graphic tasks. I have stuffed it with the maximum 16GB of RAM so it’s a rocket.

I am using a second monitor which again in my field is something far from a whim. It is extremely useful for instance when I am making text corrections (either via a text document or via some proofing websites, like www.proofhq.com) and I place the correction document on one monitor and the actual editable file on the main one.

On the wall you can see a small clock which is set on the Australian time zone (Brisbane time) and which is extremely useful for the newspaper deadlines. And above that is a reproduction of an Aboriginal painting which was a gift to us by my first Australian employer.

I was already connected with Australia when I started with GraphicRiver so when I found out that Envato is also Australian it was kinda weird. I thought: well maybe it’s a sign. :) )

My actual working space is a false divider of the living room which is my “creative temple”. Often breached with unholy insistence by my kids who like to “calculatorize”, a term they invented for staying in my chair, randomly pressing the keyboard keys and looking very important…

Describe your creative process. What steps do you normally follow to create your files?

A lot of my portfolio is comprised of former actual magazines and newspapers for which I have changed the name, fonts, texts and some of the pictures, so the creative process was done before for those. :)

But in general, I am looking at many magazines and newspapers and I am also buying a lot of new ones. I have also found an invaluable tool in using www.zinio.com which is a magazines and newspapers subscription service website. But since it offers the possibility to actually see the titles and more importantly what are the actual inside pages, I am constantly using it for new ideas.

And since working for GraphicRiver, I am looking everywhere for potential new ideas. For instance I used to toss away the annoying direct mail advertising that usually is cramming my mail box. Or at least I was gently offering them to my wife for potatoes peeling :) ) Not anymore. I am now always checking everything lands in my mailbox for potential GraphicRiver value and in general I am collecting all kinds of printed materials which normally I didn’t notice before.

What is your advice to other authors regarding how to create a successful portfolio?

There is a great amount of relativity regarding what is to be considered a successful portfolio. For instance, in terms of sale, my portfolio generates a modest, more or less constant income, below $1000/month (with which I am extremely happy, by the way).

But apart from sales it generates something which I think is more valuable. And this is a constant flow of mails from potential customers saying: “Hey, I have seen your GR portfolio and liked it. Would you do this or that for me?” I have even received one offer to submit all my stuff to another author for $3,000. :) )) Kindly declined.

My second weekly Australian newspaper was acquired especially due to my GraphicRiver portfolio. So, from this perspective I can say that my portfolio is a successful one.

I always thought that giving advice to others regarding anything is a subtle form of infatuation which puts you in a position of a guru that has reached illumination and decides to share with the other poor mortals the keys of success. Which, of course is not the case. But since the question specifically request for advice, I can only try to advice others authors towards having a successful approval of items.

And my suggestion is simple: Be always true to yourself! If you upload something that your are absolutely convinced is quality stuff then there are greater chances for approval. I have tried this myself on GraphicRiver. Whenever I have uploaded something I wasn’t 100% sure I liked it myself in the first place, it was rejected with the classic message: “Your file doesn’t meet our quality guidelines, etc, etc…” So be the first to like and appreciate what you are submitting.

What do you do to market your files?

I don’t do much actually. I tweet and like the new items on Facebook and also have direct links to some of my items as well as to the whole Envato website my portfolio website. Oh, and trying to publish this interview. :) )

What are your three favorite files, and why do you like them?

Celebrity Magazine Bundle

I like this because it’s a complete bundle with my Celebrity Magazines series which are by far the most complex layouts I have on Envato. It also happens to be the most expensive item on GraphicRiver (yet). :)

Elegant Trifold Menu Pack

I like particularly this restaurant menu because it turned out to be an elegant and graphically catchy file without using any picture at all.

16 Pages Weekly Newspaper

And finally this is my best selling item. Ironically this is also my very first submission although because it was soft rejected several times (I didn’t figured it properly all the technical nitty-gritty submission details) it actually appears as my fourth item.

Apart from yourself, who is your favorite marketplace author, and why do you like them?

To be perfectly honest, I neither know much about the other authors nor browse their files and portfolios. I don’t want to seem contemptuous or superior. The simple truth is that I have very little spare time and when I am working for GraphicRiver I prefer to make a new template of my own rather than browsing others’ work. Well, it turned out also to be a perfect way of being not complexed by other authors which are more talented then me. :) )

This doesn’t mean I don’t look at all at other works on GraphicRiver. For instance, I am always impressed (and confess that this is something I never can do) by the flyers of sevenstyles. The level of complexity just blows me away. No wonder he’s first. :)

What do you do in your spare time?

A new GraphicRiver template of course. :)

The Ultimate After Effects Bundle, Out Now!

Posted: 14 May 2012 07:06 PM PDT

The Ultimate After Effects Bundle is now available! Packed with some of the best files from VideoHive and AudioJungle!

For just $20, you get an awesome selection of premium audio and visual production elements, worth up to $500.

If you are an After Effects aficionado, love audio, visual production and want some amazing resources to super power your projects, the Ultimate After Effects Bundle is for you! You'd be nuts to miss out on this incredible deal, so check out the item page and buy now!

You can also earn referral income by sending traffic to our sales page or the item page!

To earn referral income, just use your regular referral code like this:


Just replace 'username' at the end of the URL with your username so our system can track your referrals!

As you can imagine this bundle is going to sell like hotcakes, so this is a great opportunity to earn some quick referral cash!

Here are some banners we've designed to help you promote this fantastic deal! Just right click the banners and save them to use them on your own website or blog. Happy referring!

Over $500 worth of amazing audio and video production resources for only $20!

Over $500 worth of amazing audio and video production resources for only $20!

Over $500 worth of amazing audio and video production resources for only $20!

Over $500 worth of amazing audio and video production resources for only $20!

Over $500 worth of amazing audio and video production resources for only $20!

Over $500 worth of amazing audio and video production resources for only $20!

Over $500 worth of amazing audio and video production resources for only $20!

Over $500 worth of amazing audio and video production resources for only $20!

The Ultimate After Effects Bundle is available from 12pm today until the 22nd of May 2012 (AEDT). Because of the nature of the Bundle all items are purchased ‘as is’ and no support or upgrades will be available for Bundle items.

Why Envato Is a Great Place to Work: Work Anywhere, Anytime

Posted: 14 May 2012 07:00 PM PDT

Why is Envato a great place to work? I’ll tell you. It’s flexible!

This morning I was able to drive my son to a job interview in Brisbane. While he’s being grilled, I can get some work done. I’m sitting at a McDonalds playground sipping a frappe and getting some work done with free wifi, watching my youngest son climb on the play equipment. In a couple of hours (maybe sooner) I’ll get a message that the interview is over (phew!), and I’ll drive us all home. Try that with a normal job!

I first thought about working from home just over three years ago, after my youngest son was born. Not long afterwards I landed a small writing job with the AudioJungle blog, and six months later I had a full time job. I have to say that working for Envato has worked out perfectly for me.

But I also have to say that too much flexibility isn’t always a good thing. Days like today generally start early, and finish very late. The more you try to squeeze into a day, the longer they last! I generally try to make my days more structured, but it’s great knowing the flexibility is there when I need it.

If you’re on the team and would like to let the world know why Envato is a great place to work, drop me a line, or use this submission form. And include a photo if you can!

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