Chris Dickman — Writer, Editor and Content Curator

Online Work

After many years of writing, editing and content curating for print and online, I've been fortunate to have contributed to a wide variety of projects. My online work has been focused on the three sites I've architected, launched and grown since I first created CorelNET on contract for Corel Corp. Over more than ten years I contributed thousands of news items, articles, interviews and blog posts to my Graphics.com site, currently owned by Mediabistro.

In recent years I successfully repositioned it from a technology-centric perspective to include visual culture in all its variants, thereby significantly boosting online engagement and broadening its readership. Also of note are hundreds of posts dedicated to marketing and branding that I contributed to the Mediabistro StockLogos site.

Print Work

When it comes to print I've generated everything from book reviews, travel writing and op-ed pieces for national newspaper The Globe and Mail, through magazine articles on art and antiques; software and hardware reviews in the early days of the personal computer; art exhibition catalogs; software documentation; and an in-house newsletter for a leading-edge technology company. I've penned a monthly column on graphics software; served as Editor in Chief of a glossy devoted to electronic publishing; line-edited one book and authored four of my own; and published a successful monthly magazine.

THE WORK

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Goutiful Communications

January 2017 – Present

My Goutiful Communications business provides a range of editorial services that leverage my decades of experience in creating and editing content for print and the web. I look forward to discussing how I can help meet your editorial needs. Ongoing contracts a specialty!

work

Graphics.com

August 2001 – December 2016

I launched GraphicsNews.com in 2001 as a reference site for news in the graphics world, with an emphasis on content creation tools. I sold GraphicsNews to ArtToday, Inc. and we relaunched it as Graphics.com in 2002. It has since passed through the hands of several owners, during which time I continued to set the editorial direction and generate the site's content.

In recent years I shifted from a technology focus to covering global visual culture in all its forms, past and present, an approach which broadened its reach. But current owner Mediabistro decided to stop updating it, as well as several of its other sites, so I departed for fresh editorial adventures.

Visit Graphics.com
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i/us Corp.

June 1997 – January 2000

Co-founder of the company, as Editor in Chief I was responsible for all content, community and technical aspects of the i/us site, including one of the first stores offering digital downloads of graphics applications, geared to the design community. I also architected the JumpList SAAS web application, which allowed users to create and manage categorized collections of links for their sites — an early "Yahoo! Directory for everyone." The company was sold to Getty Images in 2000.

About JumpList
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CorelNET.com

April 1995 – June 1997

In 1994 I pitched Corel Corp. CEO Michael Cowpland on the idea of creating and running a web site on contract for CorelDRAW users. The result was the first large-scale, community-driven site dedicated to the graphics community, hosting bustling forums and regular live group chats with CoreDRAW notables. Ah, the early days of the Web!

Visit Corel.com
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DPA Communications Inc.

1987 – 1995

Toronto-based DPA was a pioneer in providing training for desktop publishing apps and I was its first seminar leader (later to be Senior Trainer), starting off with PostScript programming and graphic design, and later settling on PageMaker and CorelDRAW.

Visit DPA
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Electronic Composition & Imaging magazine

1989 – 1992

At the time this was Canada's leading graphics and publishing magazine. We did the whole thing digitally, from the editorial submissions through QuarkXPress layouts. It was the dawn of the "desktop publishing" revolution that saw the shift from traditional publishing technology to personal systems. It was an exciting time to lend a hand to boost the emerging technologies that promised to democratize publishing processes. It's hard now to remember how much bitter opposition there was to this in an era dominated by analog thinking.

Other Projects

Dance of Opinions

When my wife decided to put out a book on her area of expertise, intercultural communication, I was only too happy to provide everything from line editing through copy editing and eBook creation with Adobe InDesign. Dedicated to a topic that's at the heart of what it is to be human, Dance of Opinions is available on Amazon. Quotable quote: "We build our futures together, in the words we exchange today.”

Mastering CorelDRAW

I authored the first book on CorelDRAW, a breakthrough vector illustration app for Windows. The first edition was a best-seller, so I followed it up with three more. But I found books an increasingly cumbersome way to engage with users, so I moved first to publishing a monthly journal about CorelDRAW and then a dedicated site, where the feedback loop was immediate.

Mastering CorelDRAW Journal

I had a blast publishing the Journal, which was packed with tips for CorelDRAW users. Part of the fun was that I did everything — from hiring the writers, editing the copy, laying out the publication in PageMaker, creating the film, managing the printing, handling the mailing, and even taking care of fulfillment. I eventually sold it and launched CorelNET.com, a site I built and managed for Corel.

What Am I good at?

Focus on the reader

If there's one thing I've learned over decades of content creation, it's to maintain an unwavering focus on the reader. Data and algorithms can help but immersing yourself in the universe of the reader takes more than mathematics. If you really know your reader, when you hit on the right topic it's self evident — at that point you just have to execute.

Reader Focus

Content curation

Writing

Editing

education

01 1974 - 1979

Ontario College of Art and Design

Art history, sculpture, design, printmaking, life drawing.
AOCA degree

02 1971 - 1973

American University of Paris

Humanities, life drawing, printmaking.
Associate in Arts degree

03 1963 - 1971

Upper Canada College

Upper Canada College was founded in 1829. I'm looking forward to attending the 200th anniversary blowout.
Graduate