Review Quality of Instructables

Looking for some feedback on quality of my Instructables.  What key element(s) am I missing to win those awesome grand prizes?

https://www.instructables.com/member/DiyWaterDog/instructables/

Of my 51 projects I think 49 have been featured.

I have more than my share of robot T-shirts. :-)  What do I need to improve to impress site visitors and judges enough to get more votes and views?

Yes, I have been through the Instructables class...  With 49 featured, I must be doing something right.  What do I need to improve?  

Please don't look at this as being greedy, but would really love one of these grand prizes one of these days.  

I'm sure any comments would benefit all authors.

Thanks in advance and Keep Making!

Love this site and community!

DIYWATERDOG.


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BrittLiv3 months ago

Is there a certain one you think should have won? I am not a staff member and rarely judge contests, but considering how many I have won, I might be able to help you.

I browsed through a few of your projects and overall they are really good, so these suggestions are at a very high level and are definitely not meant to discourage you.

Lighting and camera focus are key. Maybe you should consider getting a camera light. There were a few blurry pictures or the focus wasn’t on the area of interest, try taking lots of pictures of every step and discard the ones that aren’t nice. I sometimes take more than a hundred pictures for the title image playing around with positioning and lighting. A tripod is also very helpful. Try leaving a bit of space around the object, so that it isn’t cut in your title image.

Personally, I do not like having many image format changes and usually just stick to landscape. I think instructables that use only one format are a lot more pleasing to the eye.

When going through an instructable, I prefer the ones that have only pictures taken by the author.

Even though views aren’t a guaranty to win a contest, it certainly helps to have a successful instructable that has made it into the newsletter. In order to get into the newsletter you will need a lot of views in the first few days. I usually take a look at similar instructables or things I have made in the past and try to figure what websites wrote about it. Then I tell them that I have made something new and hope that they feature it on their site.

I hope I didn’t offend you with my suggestions, like I said overall you are doing really well.

DiyWaterDog (author)  BrittLiv3 months ago

Thank you for your response. I am always open to constructive criticism.

I know at times my photography can be a bit better. Sometimes I forget to take shots or rush through due to what I am working on or with.

I guess I am surprised to make it as a finalist for some such as the Duct Tape Duster and the Garage Shelves, but nothing for other projects that are very unique and involved such as many of the projects where I used LED lights that involved other skills such as woodworking.

What do you mean by "try to figure what websites wrote about it." What other sites are you submitting to? I have tried getting more traffic through Twitter and other social media with little success.

Just seems like I am missing something that I just can't figure out.

Thanks again.

DIYWATERDOG

If you google for example "Deadpool Knife Block" or "Nerf Sentry Gun", you can see that a lot of websites wrote about my projects. So if I was going to build for example a new Sentry Gun I would go to a few of those and tell them about my new project.

Btw. both of the projects got caught in the filters and it took a few day for them to get featured. So in the first few days they got hardly any views and weren't featured in the newsletter. Once other sites wrote about them and they were getting a lot of views (way more than other instructables at that time) I asked staff members why they weren't featured in the newsletter and they told me that they got overlooked. They were kind enough to put them in the newsletter and I ended up winning at lot of awesome prizes.

I guess if you are passionate about a project, put in some extra work to get people to notice it.

Really helpful insight. Even I can use these for my own purpose! Thanks :)

Peterthinking3 months ago

I don't think it is the quality of your work, you may have just been outshone by something more interesting. For instance I had something up that was a pretty cool 3D printed thing then someone put up an entire freaking solar system that was geared and everything spun around the sun at relative scale speeds... yeah I got beat. Fair and square though. Think of this like poker. Hang onto your best work till you see you got a good hand. And don't jump in when the other person has two aces showing. That being said I just throw things up here and hope for the best. I don't really plan anything. This weekend for instance I needed a couple antenna for my TVs. Took some pics and up it went. I had a good time and when I was done saw they might wiggle into a few contests so I entered. Do I got a shot? Who knows but imagine the crazy stuff I could do with a CNC mill or laser! MUAHAHAHA!!!!

mtairymd3 months ago

I agree with BrittLiv's comments. As for
the "other sites" comment, Instructables has (had) a referrers link
under the "About This Instructable". It looks like it is down or they removed it. Anyway, that stat shows the sites that are providing
traffic (views) to your project. You can also do a reverse image search
through google to see where your project has been picked up. I have a few
that were picked up by blogs and forums that added a significant number of
views.