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Jeffrey Donenfeld and Make — adventures in blogging

By on September 8, 2015


Living vicariously through the good people using our themes is just one perk of being on The Theme Foundry team, which is why we’re so thrilled to see Jeffrey Donenfeld’s site done up with Make & Make Plus. Jeffrey is an adventurer, photographer, consultant, and more — and documents all the details of his international adventures with amazing photos and stories.

Screenshot 2015-09-04 15.03.00

Tell us a little bit about your website?

My website is my personal frontpage for everything I do and love. I’ve been running it for about 15 years since college, and have written around 1900 articles on topics ranging from Adventure Field Dispatches, Science Expedition Reports, Product Reviews, Technology Analysis, and Photoessays. Additionally, my site is a personal resume, containing all sorts of biographical info, including a general bio page, as well ask skill-specific pages such as public speaking, expedition consulting, photography, interactive media, film/tv casting, and media.

Why did you pick Make & Make Plus for the website? Were you looking for specific features?

My site originally started in 2000 running on University of Colorado webspace and hand-coded HTML. After that, I switched to Geocities for while, and then to Blogger v.1.0 when that was released (here’s the evolution of my blog). I switched to WordPress once it got popular as a long-term blog CMS. I picked Make Plus for its simplicity, flexibility, and integrity. Make is a theme that looks great out of the box, is easily and infinitely customizable, and is written with solid code and standards that will let it be maintainable well into the future. I’m looking for sticking with Make for a long time, even as surrounding plugins change.

How long did it take you to put a site together? What was the process like?

I put the site together in a single evening. I was switching over from another popular customizable theme, so I had mostly all of the content already there. Switching over to Make was fairly easy with the simple Builder templates and customization options that integrate smoothly with WordPress. I’m now at a point where I feel like I have a great looking, simple, clear site.

Has the new site made an impact on the web presence/business/brand?

jdphoto-2Having a good-looking, modern website has proven absolutely essential for my business. As a photojournalist, I can professionally show off my work without using a 3rd party portfolio site. I can show off my travel experience using a geocoding plugin that loks great with Make, and I can easily create new focused pages to suit any new need.

How do you maintain your site while you’re traveling? Any tips or advice?

While I’m traveling, I use the WordPress iOS app. Additionally, I use the “Post via email” feature to email posts in while I’m on satellite links. While I was living at the West Antarctic Ice Sheet Field Camp, I used a military satellite connection to email my blog plain text and 50kb images, which were automatically posted. Here’s more about what I was doing in Antarctica.

How long does it take you to put together a post?

Totally depends on the post. But with Jetpack-powered galleries, I can put together a travelogue post fairly easily. Here’s a recent one I posted about running the Pyongyang, North Korea Marathon.

What and where will your next adventure be?

Next up, I’m going on a few mountaineering adventures in the Colorado Rockies, and in November I’ll be exploring Cuba. Be sure to subscribe to get my latest updates.

How can we follow you? Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc.?

Sure! Follow me on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter,
YouTube, and Instagram.

If you’re using Make & Make Plus as the foundation for your site, we’d love to hear about it! Reach out on Twitter using the hashtag #iusemake to grab our attention!

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