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  1. #1

    Experienced CT... how do you organize yourself?

    I'm lucky enouh to be a CT not only for TDC, but also for two other personal teams, including one here (Charm Box Studios) and one on another site. I love all those designers and I feel honored to create for them, and that's why I want to do it "right" and fulfill my bosses' expectations. But I'm not very organized at heart and I'm afraid I won't be able to complete the assignements, not because I don't have time but because I messed up the deadlines, forgot or other (very professional... NOT!) mistakes like that.

    So, here's my questions to all you experienced CT that create for various teams: how do you keep up? How do you keep track of what is due and when, of where and when you have to post your LOs, of how many pages are required per month? Also, how do you keep track of your credits so that it's easier to post in the various galleries? And what about the social medias (FB, twitter, Pinterest)? And last but not least, how many CTs do you scrap for and how much time (besides scrapping) do you spend "working" for your designers or sites?

  2. #2
    Digital Creative Chick corrin's Avatar
    if only our eyes saw souls instead of bodies - how very different our ideals of beauty would be
    Quote Originally Posted by chloe View Post
    how do you keep track of your credits so that it's easier to post in the various galleries?
    I really am not in the "experienced CT" category (I just looked in here to pick up a few organisational tips!! ), but to keep track of the credits for lo's I am working on, I make a note of them on a post-it/stickie (the computerized kind, that already come on my computer!) - so that when it comes to load the lo into a gallery, I just copy and paste it. If I didn't have access to a stickie or something similar, I'd email myself them, so its easy to find it again and delete it when I'm done.

  3. #3
    I keep a spreadsheet of all my CT stuff for each current week. I have 10 CTs, so I chart:

    Finished LO title

    Also, as far as the kits, I have a folder for each of my separate CTs. Within those folders are the kits. For the current kit, I always change the name to (example)5_25 Kit name. That way, with the numbers, it's the first kit in the folder. When I'm done creating with it, I take the #'s off.

    For store CTs, I have them in a folder, then broken down by months. I still name them with current kit #'ed and on top, until I'm finished. So it would be 5_24 Kit Name - Designer.

    Also, something I do that I find very helpful, is have a folder for current uploads. Some weeks, I have 10+ kits to upload! So when I'm finished saving my LOs, I copy my web-ready version to that folder, that way I have them all in one spot.

    Also, I keep a running list of all credits as I work, and each designer has their own doc. Each kit is titled, dated, and credited.

    Whew, sorry for the novel!

  4. #4
    I'm not a CT, but this is how I keep track of credits for posting: As I add the various elements & papers to the layout, I make sure I record it in the "file info" for that project. I use PSE, so I think it's pretty much the same path for all Adobe projects. Go to File > File Info and it will pull up a new window. I usually just put the information in the Description or Keywords. Then when I save for web, I can copy the file info from the PSD file and paste it to the JPG file. I usually keep track of everything in the file info, right down to the smallest staple. But when it comes to posting, I've been told we just need to include the kit & designer name - so it's very easy to post the general information since I've already recorded all the details.

    As far as tracking deadlines - I've heard good things about Cozi Calendar. There's an app for it, and it syncs nicely across multiple devices. You can color code appts & events for different family members - so I imagine you could color code deadlines for various designers. You can also set it to send an e-mail reminders. Again, I don't use it, but I could see it's value if you were busy and had multiple deadlines.

    I'd like to see how other people keep track of things - I can always use help when it comes to organizing!
    Last edited by Little Pixie; 05-21-2012 at 08:49 AM.

  5. #5
    It is a while ago I cted, but I guess that doesn't matter, lol. Create a folder, called ct_work or something. In there I would create folders with due date, like 25_05_2012. In that folder you put the kits you need to work with. Once they are done, you can move them into your kit folder. Once all things from that folder are done, you can delete that empty folder - very satisfying! Do you work with Photoshop, Chloe? If so: When you are working on a layout, you can write the credits in the file info (file - file info). I used to put the credits in the description you find there. When posting to the galleries, I would have my psd file open, and simply copy and paste the whole shabang in there. If you place your elements in your psd file instead of dragging, it will automatically name the layer after the element/paper. Just make sure you rasterize at the end, to keep the file smaller.
    Nathalie - eNKay Design

  6. #6
    Great tips. I should go to bed so I'll post a longer response later, but keep them coming!!!

  7. #7
    I used to use 2 different systems (at 2 points in my CT experience)...

    The first was to make a text file (could easily be a spreadsheet, but I didn't have spreadsheet software at the time). At the beginning of a new month, I would copy the bare bones requirements for each of my CTS

    Layout 1
    Layout 2
    Layout 3

    Team 2 Layout 1
    Team 2 Layout 2


    Then, as I would take assignments (in the case of the store CT I was on) or the designer made a new kit available to CT members, I would write down the kit name and release date. When I had uploaded my finished layout to the galleries, I would go back and put an x in front of the line, so I knew that part of the requirement was done. Even just filling in the info helped keep me on track, as I could quickly tell how many layouts I still owed for each designer/team.

    My second method was a little more low tech. I used a wall calendar and marked when assignments were due on the calendar. Each team had a different color. If a layout was due on a day other than the day the kit released, I would label one as "Layout Due" and the other as "Post Layout" with some kind of specific notation, kit name, designer, challenge name, etc. If I completed a task early (and didn't have to post it on the specific date) I would put a slash through the entry. At the end of each week, I should have had all entries listed with slashes, if I had met all my requirements.

    The calendar really helped me manage my time better over the course of a week, because I could tell what was coming up and helped me prioritize and stay on top of deadlines. I also included when I had blog posts due, and scheduled a day to comment in the different galleries (I picked a different day for each gallery so I wasn't overwhelmed).

  8. #8
    Hanging with the Chicks! Pamie's Avatar
    I'm fluent in three languages: English, Sarcam, and Jersey.
    Here's my method - take from it what you will

    I have a folder called "Scrapping" and in that folder is a folder called "CT Stuff", which has subfolders labeled for each CT I'm on. In each of those folders, I have a folder for this week's release date. That's where I download new kits/products to until I use them. Once I've used the product, I save the websized to-be-posted LO in another folder, called "To Be Posted" in a subfolder labeled for the designer's store (ie TDC-120524 is the name of the folder for this week's LOs).

    In the meantime, I create a Word document where I note all my credits for my LOs as I finish them. Since I'm a kit scrapper (and most CT would be, I'd expect), credits are fairly easy. I save the Word document with the details of the LO, and save a spot for the link to each gallery I am required to post to. Once posted, I fill in the gallery link and I'm done. (Sidenote, I know some girls who's gallery links just go to their gallery rather than to that exact LO, since the most recent would appear first.) So I end up with an easy place to cut and paste info from, whether it be to the galleries or to report to my designer.
    Last edited by Pamie; 05-20-2012 at 06:52 PM. Reason: Sounds like Kate and I think alike - scary! :)

  9. #9
    Hanging with the Chicks! IntenseMagic's Avatar
    “Never put off till tomorrow what may be done day after tomorrow just as well".
    I am totally not organized...I feel scattered most of the time LOL But here's how I do it: I have a folder called "CT Working". In that folder, I have folders labeled by month "CT May 2012". In that folder I have either store name with designers under that or just the designer, if it's not site CT. Those have all the kits to work with in them. I also have a folder labeled "Layouts" with folders under that called "Full" and "Web" for the size. In the web folder, I have folders by release date, that way I know which layouts get posted when. At the end of the month I move everything to my EHD.

  10. #10
    I use Yahoo Calender to keep track of when LOs need to be posted. The Calendar sends me a reminder email, and of course I check my email every morning, so I know what I need to do. On the day the LO is to be posted, I just write "Post LO ___ by Designer ____" always at the 9am slot. (I'll also write the date when LOs are due, which helps me stay on time.) I have a reminder email sent 12 hours before so that at 9pm the night before the LO is to be posted I can get that reminder and think "Oh yeah, tomorrow I've got to post that LO." (I chose 9am so that I can quickly scan my weekly calendar and see which days I have LOs due. And because the 12-hour-before reminder email comes when I'm still awake lol!)

    Also, on each LO I make, I have a text layer where I post all my credits (including hyperlinks) as I make the LO. (I leave the layer hidden while I work on the LO and when I save my JPEG of course rotfl.) I copy/paste that layer into a simple Text Document once the LO is finished. That way, I can literally just c/p that document when I post in galleries.

    The main thing is just finding a system that works for YOU! I used to use Post It notes but then I got on to too many teams and all the stuff I needed to do didn't fit on one Post It (I have big, scrawly handwriting lol). But I do keep a pad of paper next to my computer and I write a little note on Weds and Thurs nights to remind me what to post on Thurs and Fri (the two days I have the most to post).
    Getting creative for Cluster Queen Creations

  11. #11
    Wow, now I feel really disorganised, lol! Although I think I mostly keep up, so I can't be going too far wrong
    :: Jude ::
    : Creating for : The Digichick :
    : Kate Hadfield : Kim Jensen : Tickled Pink Studio : Amy Wolff :
    : My Gallery :

  12. #12
    Great question Chloe. I too am not very organized and need to get with it better. One thing I started doing, credit wise, is when using templates, keep the template name in my page name. I've also started using the place function with leaves the name of the item in the layers, so that's been a great help.

    I'll have to keep an eye on this! I'd love to be more organized come the summer.

  13. #13
    Oh, yes, forgot to mention that I totally utilize my Google calendar for CT stuffs, too. CT release dates/LOs have their own color! (It purple )

  14. #14
    I think I will go with a calendar too. I kind of like my kits organisation as it is (by Designer) so an "external" tool like a calendar or spreadsheet would be more attractive to me.

    Kate, I like your spreadsheet idea, too. I'll definitely have to think about it and create something that will fit my needs and taste!

    For the CT, I use a word doc where I list the whole description that I then copy and paste in the galleries. As I can see from your experiences, it's not that bad! I think unless I find an action that would create the credits, link them to the shops and post in the galleries for me, I can't avoid to spend some time on that. It's definitely not my fave part of CTing, to be honest, but it gets much better when I do it as I scrap rather than after my LO is done!

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