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I had long dreamed about becoming a professional artist, but until last year, I did not feel like I was ready to advertise my work outside of friends and family. After five years of art education and with enough good paintings to offer, I decided to take the plunge and become a professional artist. I knew that the first thing that I had to do before I began to show my artwork was to put up an attractive Internet Website that would act as a hub for my business advertising. From the first time that I got a peek at the Internet, I could see that this was going to be the biggest, most important tool for advertising and promoting a business ever. Because it has the potential of reaching millions of people worldwide, I knew that my site had to look sharp, innovative, professional, and easy to navigate. I wanted people to see my work quickly and easily, and not spend time wading through a lot of text and endless layers. So, with my knowledge of Dreamweaver and Fireworks software from working on other sites, I came up with a design plan, experimented with colors and fonts, and worked and reworked graphics and photos to best display and market my artwork. While I was working on the design for the Website, I turned to my professional geek friends for ideas on registering domain names, hosting a Website, and uploading files. I got an earful of technical jargon (luckily, I have a geek decoder) from my friends. I listened up to the point, after about ten minutes, when my eyes started to glaze over, my brain began to back up, and my geek decoder seized up. Luckily, I found out what I needed to know before it was too late. Registering the domain name, pattymegliostudio.com, was easy. I quickly decided to use GoDaddy for this as it was straightforward, reasonable, and fast. But for the hosting service, I did a little bit more research and put a little bit more thought into what I needed before I made my decision. I wanted something inexpensive and robust, with an email address and plenty of space and options for expansion, but I didn’t need a lot of extras. I also wanted a service that was easy to work with and a company that had a good reputation for customer service. My geek friend Bob recommended M6.net. I was not disappointed. I found that M6.net is all that and more. In less than a week, my site, pattymegliostudio.com, was up and running (and I didn’t need a geek decoder). I use FileZilla, a free downloadable software, for uploading files. I can view my site immediately with any changes that I make. I have been up and successfully running since December 2005. In the six months that I’ve been using M6.net, I have had only one small issue, which was quickly addressed. My Website has already paid off. An owner of a Bed and Breakfast in New Hampshire contacted me about putting up an exhibit after seeing my work on my Website. I am starting to advertise using newspapers, postcards, and word of mouth, always referring people back to pattymegliostudio.com as a source of information and communication. I get a lot of unsolicited positive feedback about my site, and I firmly believe that it is the most important, and most productive, tool for advertising my business.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
www.pattymegliostudio.com
Patty Meglio is a professional writer and artist. She paints fine oil paintings on canvas. Subjects include antique elements, seascapes, landscapes, figures and portraits. Patty uses her Website as a focal point for promoting herself and her artwork. Web site hosted by www.m6.net

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