I am happy to share my new websites today 🍃 ^^
A little backstory: For those of you who know me / my work … maybe you know I have been working with the medium of the web for a long time now. But for the past few years, I’ve had this strange feeling, like a sort of weight … as if my websites weren’t accurately reflecting the person I am … or the person I’d like to be more and more in this world, today.
2022 began. I remember feeling the strong, glowing Q1 energy, so I began my personal website rehabilitation process. In doing so, I gradually realized that I didn’t have to re-haul everything (like I originally imagined) but rather undergo a process of refinement. That said, my updated laurelschwulst.com website actually looks a lot like a previous version (from 2019 and earlier), just with a new color scheme, updated links, and updated roles:
Note that these websites are also still works in progress. I need to add alt-text to laurel.world still. And there are probably some bugs and missing pieces! Anyway, if you notice anything weird, or you can’t find something that I previously had up, feel free to kindly let me know :]
Seasons, Birthdays, & Rituals
Over the past few years, I’ve been very interested in the idea of seasons.
At the start of 2022, I somehow knew that I would use my birthday (earlier this week — Tuesday, March 15th) as a milestone to “launch” this new version of myself. My birthday, which happens at the very end of “winter” and right before “spring” felt like the right moment for this type of energy … coming out of the cold and into the sun & green …
Speaking of cold things, a website is often just the tip of an “iceberg” … of a whole process of refocusing and reorienting oneself. In early 2022, I imagined how I would like to interact with the world more this year, and my website became my therapeutic medium to work through everything.
Thinking about newness and milestones, I tweeted this in January:
“it would be nice if people just sent each other cute trading cards of themselves (kind of like senior pictures) every new year ^^”
So in addition to launching my websites (quietly) on my birthday, I also sent a “belated new years” card to my friends and family. It included a photo of me (senior pictures style), a small note saying happy new year, and a laminated quote with a leaf.
In a way, this card and these websites are my own personal new year. While I don’t think I’ll do this every birthday (as it was a lot of work!), I am glad I found my own ritual / carved out my own personal milestone, especially amidst this amorphous pandemic world.
Speaking of birthdays, one important detail about laurel.world is that all items in the directory are sortable by “day” they launched or met the world somehow. This might seem subtle, but one thing I’ve been realizing more and more is that I like surprise and events, and that many of my projects “launch” after a long period of gestation. For me, finding an occasion to do something I already want to do fuels and directs it, making it real. As an aside, it’s fun to think about all my projects having birthdays, imagining what age each of my projects are, and also what their particular birthday (season, astrological sign, etc.) might illuminate about them, to begin.
Authorship & Ambiance
On my updated website, the primary roles under my name are:
Author, Director of Ambiance, Professor
I’d like to work in these roles more and more.
( 1 ) I am working on a book about websites. I would love to talk to anyone interested, or anyone who knows of a publisher.
( 2 ) I want to create more special & meditative video tutorials and “tours,” similar to my bird kite piece but also my videos Basics of HTML, Basics of CSS, and the Tour of the Alt-Text as Poetry website. If you are interested in sponsoring, somehow supporting me, or partnering on a video tutorial, please email me.
As an ending note, I also want to share a couple wonderful birthday gifts people (website people) made me:
My laurel.world directory ends with this quote, which I’ve shared many other times before, but I feel is always nice to return to …
In each of my friends there is something that only some other friend can fully bring out. By myself I am not large enough to call the whole person into activity; I want other lights other than my own to show all my friend’s facets… — C.S. Lewis
Thanks for joining me on my birthday. I hope you like my websites!