We rely on tools to build our businesses and create work.
It’s a competitive market of products that are available to us, and that’s a great advantage to us as artists and professionals.
1. 27″ iMac
I’m a mac user and I’m a completely happy customer. For me, the experience of working with a all-in-one desktop machine, is perfect.
The display on the iMac is beautiful and vibrant. The machine is lightweight and easy to use, but handles everything I throw at it.
I don’t do as much heavy 3d and compositing as I used to, which makes the 27″ iMac the perfect workstation for me.
2. Lacie 1tb Thunderbolt
My iMac can only hold so much information. Truth be told, I like to keep my work machine light.
So whenever possible I archive projects onto my Thunderbolt drive from Lacie.
I’m no expert when it comes to drives, and Lacie make it easy to plug in and go.
Haven’t had a crash or corrupted disk, so for now, I like lacie drives.
3. Wacom Cintiq Companion Hybrid
I’ve written about this tool before, but it’s worth mentioning again.
The Cintiq has revolutionized my workflow, from storyboarding to artwork creation.
The hybrid can also serve you on the go, as it runs an android operating system.
Dropbox is cloud storage that can be synced to all your devices and shared with others.
Dropbox has become such a staple of my work life, it would be hard to imagine what I would do without it.
If you aren’t using dropbox, you should be.
It’s simple to use and works just like it should.
It’s a great service at a great price point.
Check out Wipster.
Wipster is a video review app that runs in your browser. You can collaborate with team members and clients, and leave feedback directly on the video timeline.
It’s incredibly well built and looks professional for clients.
It’s added big value into my workflow and I recommend checking it out.
6. Google Business Apps
The amount I value I get out of google’s offerings is pretty amazing.
From Gmail to Drive to Google Docs, I run multiple business on top of these cloud based tools.
They work flawlessly. Come on, it’s Google, what more can I say.
Part of running successful businesses depends on my ability to leverage the internet for value.
From the MoGraph Mentor site to this blog to Paige’s Photo site to the MoGraph Mentor forums and Students Site, I use bluehost to house all these.
Bluehost is dirt cheap and super reliable.
You need to build websites to move your business forward, and for me it’s a no brainer, Bluehost is the option.
Managing all of those websites requires a content management solution and for me, it’s WordPress.
It’s super flexible and easy to use.
You can build blogs, forums, business sites and pretty much anything else, no top of WordPress as your CMS.
I’m not a fully capable web developer, so having a solution like WordPress is essential.
9. Adobe Creative Cloud
This is an obvious one, but it’s worth mentioning.
Being able to use their suite of apps across my desktop and laptop, is fantastic.
The launch of their cloud service hasn’t been perfect, but it’s still been pretty amazing.
Building business on the internet is about using every tool at your disposal to provide value.
Mailchimp is an easy to use, stupidly simple, email app.
It allows me to stay connected to a subscriber base and reach out to them when I have value to offer.
The key is not to spam people, and only reach out when they need to hear from you.
I record quite a bit of screen cast content, from tutorials to lectures for MoGraph Mentor.
On the MAC, screenflow is the undisputed king of screen recording apps.
It’s stable, easy to use, and comes cheap. I love it.
Slack is a team messaging app that I use for MoGraph Mentor. It allows our team to interact in an interface that looks like a private twitter app.
It’s simple, and works like it should.
Instead of bouncing emails back and forth, we chat directly in Slack. This makes communication faster and more organized, which is a big help for a company (MoGraph Mentor) that has 10 team members spread out over multiple continents.