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Design Blog Interviews: manystuff.org

The Design Blogs Top 50 chart is not just about showcasing the best design blogs on the internet, but giving you an insight into the people behind the blogs, how they work and what makes their blog successful. We talked to Charlotte Cheetham, the Paris based blogger behind Manystuff – our current number 33;

What made you get into blogging?

I became interested in graphic design by coincidence: my boyfriend is a graphic designer and when I met him I started to become interested in what he did. It became a passion gradually over the course of my internet research on the subject. Initially, I used to send emails to my boyfriend and some friends to communicate them interesting links. One day I started a small blog with few links… and visitors have increased rapidly. The activity then became more serious, more dense, and I started running side projects (exhibitions, publications etc).

My working method for the blog is still the same as the starting point for the Manystuff blog: all day long, most days of the year, I surfed the internet and shared what I liked: the same applies today, I simply share my daily fancies on a blog.

The name Manystuff came from a litteral translation of “many things/stuff” as at the start of Manystuff I used to post more different practices every day like illustration and photography.

I must admit that at the beginning I didn’t have any aim with this blog … but today it’s different: it is still a passion but also a work.

What’s the ultimate goal of your blog – if any?

The blog is not an end in itself. Manystuff database (the blog), large and daily updates, is the basis of my projects, curatorial and publishing: this raw material (graphic designers, projects, concepts, creation processes, contexts) is the starting point for developing projects (publications, exhibitions…) exceeding the Blog form.

Manystuff is a catalyst, I mean it is a stimulator. Manystuff is first a catalyst for myself : it is in contact (virtual – on the Net – or real – via in situ “reports” and immersions -) of this work, of these actors (graphic designers, curators, editors…), of these contexts, of these places (galleries etc)… that I am stimulated.

Manystuff also tries to be a catalyst when I work on exhibition projects: for certain projects, the idea is to stimulate and give the desire to graphic designers for doing a work different from their daily work of answer to a command.

How many of you work on the site?

Only one person: me.

Do you work from an office or is it a “bedroom blog”?

My flat is also my office

Do you use guest bloggers, if so – what benefit do you think they bring, if not – any particular reasons?

No, I don’t use guest bloggers as I’ve got a very strong artistic direction I want to give to Manystuff.

How about guesting on other blogs, have you done this / considered this?

I usually refuse these invitations. I already have a lot of work to do for manystuff (blog and other activities)

How much effort do you put into promoting a) your blog as an entirety, b) individual blog posts. What are your main methods and practices for doing this promotion?

I used to work on the promotion during the 1st year. Now I don’t do anything: it’s working on its own, alone….

How important do you feel a strong social media presence is to the success of your blog, what networks are you using?

I use facebook and twitter

Where does your content come from? Seeking it out yourself, submissions, other blogs…

I work alone and I really do research every day, without going on the others blogs dedicated to graphic design: my goal is not to collect the best information founded on several blogs. I make real research, from a graphic designer’s name, from exhibition places, from contexts … going from links to links, from related subjects to related subjects. I try not to work only with the information which comes to me (e-mails).
And the connections more or less built themselves. Internet is an incredible tool!

How important is it to you to deliver unique content, in an online world where so much is recycled?

I am honest in my daily selection … and really passionate. I begin to have a graphic design culture but my approach of graphic design remains visceral (“it works or not”). I am sensitive to the first force of the images… to the impact which they have on me: I think that maybe people can feel that.Is making money from the website a big factor, are you doing so, and what would you advise for new bloggers getting into the game?

Is making money from the website a big factor, are you doing so, and what would you advise for new bloggers getting into the game?

I am not trying to make money with the blog. I don’t want advertisings. I am working on earning money differently with my curator practice for example.

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