Saturday, January 11, 2014


Yesterday, while wandering through Michael's (as I'm often wont to do, though the ratio of visits to actual times I purchase something is something like 3:1), I passed an isle and saw some packages at eye-level. Shrinky Dinks Inkjet... Yes, I recognized that, people have mentioned the stuff on DeviantArt, among other places. I squinted at the price, almost 14 dollars was a bit steep, but I had some money left over... urgh, fine. Quite a while ago I had wanted to try the stuff, time to buckle down and get it.

A day's worth of drawing, some fandangling and haphazard measuring, and here is the result of my first time trying Shrinky Dinks:

Of course I had to try it out with my Crystal Ball characters! The charms came out pretty well, even for a first run. Our (currently) unnamed magician came out a bit dark, since his pants and Wings are a dark navy color, the charms are a bit too big (these measure a bit over an inch tall--because of this I could only fit four in total on the sheet), and they aren't completely flat (didn't read the instructions completely through and didn't immediately flatten them out), but despite these over-critical complaints, I really like how they came out!

My biggest, truest complaint would be the price. I paid fifteen dollars and change for six sheets. Next round I'll probably be able to squeeze 5-6 charms, since they'll be smaller, but still. Amazon has them for like ten... but with shipping it ends up the same.

But no matter! I still have five sheets left to play with. Now I have to figure out how to seal them...

Thursday, December 19, 2013

No More Retirement for This Blog!

This is a revival.

After a year's hiatus (I always seem to revive this godforsaken blog a year after abandonment), I'm pulling this poor blog out of retirement again.

So what happened between my last post and now? Uhh... well since starting the city job I got a car (a manual 2012 VW Jetta), became a hermit from the beginning of this year until around summer, around that same time coincidentally became a violent Doctor Who (and then, Supernatural) fan (have cooled down since then), got a new laptop because my sister bought my year-old previous one, said sister went to college this fall (my dad and I drove her up in the aforementioned Jetta (hills+manual=very new experience), quit city job and started job doing more fun tech-y stuff, second monitor died, got a new monitor that has an HDMI port so the PS3 has come into my room (yesssss).

But there are two things that happened semi-recently that are pretty exciting: I started a new comic  and I've started up silk screening again.

The comic is going swimmingly. It's nuts to think that a bit over a year ago I couldn't manage to even properly post a page a week for one comic, and now? Here's to the continued posting (and eventual completion) of both A Celestial Story and Crystal Ball!

As for the silk screening, I've been slowly gathering the required supplies (of which there are way too many) and I finally have everything! Thing is, I definitely need to work way more on printing on fabric :/ On paper, I was able to make crazy cool things:

 and this is what I've managed to make to put on a shirt:

It's embarrassing, I tell you! The color--and it was a single color print! grrrr--isn't solid for the whole print, and there's even some double image/ghosting... My only caveat is that during the shirt printing my sobriety definitely took a dip: the friend that was with me decided that it should me a silk screening/craft beer tasting night. And I... couldn't say no. But still, I need to practice before I'm fully confident with my fabric printing skills. With Christmas coming (and a two-week break from work with it) I'll have time to do another print run and see how much the drunkenness was a factor -.-

Well, that is what has been going on with me so far!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

A New Face for Myspace?

Hello to you too.

A few months ago (or at least long enough that I had completely forgotten about) I signed up for an invite to the new Myspace. I'd heard stuff about it and the major redesign that was going on, and after seeing the preview/tour video, I have to say I was sufficiently intrigued. Yesterday my interest was revived when that requested invite popped up in my inbox and I started poking around.

Let me say this first: the way the whole site is designed is very slick and I'm totally in love with it. Some of it, I admit, isn't immediately intuitive, but as a whole I appreciate the willingness to travel off the beaten path. One design feature that becomes immediately noticed is the fact that rather than scrolling up and down, you scroll left and right, with elements sliding in a way that's mildly reminiscent of Windows (Phone) 8. Even searching for songs/bands/people is a beautiful experience:

Hmm, I'm feeling me some Keane.

Another thing that really has me interested is the focus on music that permeates the entire site. You pick a "Top 8" list of songs, reminiscent of your top 8 (16?) friends in the old Myspace, as well as a Profile Song to showcase that one song you're completely in love with. And that's just the beginning. Always on the bottom of the page is the music player. Want to listen to a band you're mildly interested in? Play their radio, and skip around through songs with impunity. That's right, you can skip around through individual songs. For me, this is a feature that isn't offered enough in online radios and the such. I have music ADD, if the beginning isn't working for me I want to be able to skip around through the song to make sure that it's not going to pick up before giving up on the song. Additionally, you can make your own playlists/mixtapes and share them with your friends.

The only thing I can't say too much about is the social aspect of Myspace. I signed up for an invite on a whim and didn't really tell any of my friends about it (I suppose the dark stain on the name "Myspace" still remains, and often brings up memories of glittery, cluttered profiles and kitshy 2000's site design), so I don' have any friends to really play around with the social side of the site. Is it a Facebook competitor? Not now, at least. This is a social site with a heavy music leaning; I don't really see Facebook staples like casual gaming coming onto the site. And I'm very okay with that because even I, a professed Sims Social addict, would rather not have the beautiful site design cluttered with game requests.

All in all I'm willing to see what's in store with this new Myspace. It's like it's Pandora, 8tracks and Facebook all melted together and poured into a Windows (Phone) 8 mold. A winning combination or just another, prettier, rehash. I guess time will tell.

If you have an account, feel free to hit me up. I can always use a couple of friends :)

Monday, October 1, 2012

Two Paths...

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood...

Hope you guys are having a pleasant fall.

Monday, September 3, 2012

Long-awaited Change

After seven long and fruitful years of using my little Wacom Graphire4 drawing tablet, I finally splurged on a new, larger tablet: the Bamboo Create, also from Wacom.

The purchase was a bit of a "yay, first paycheck from new job" gift to myself, in addition to a much-needed upgrade from my small weary Graphire.So far, the Bamboo hasn't failed to impress me: it's thinner, it's lighter, it has a larger drawing surface (my initial reason for buying it), and has one ridiculously nuts, completely unexpected feature: the writing surface also doubles as a touch pad, like a giant laptop touch pad.

It's funny, I was initially disappointed that it lacked a mouse (the Graphire originally came with a mouse; it was the first and last thing to die in the set), but that's because I had no idea that the whole surface became a touch pad.

My only gripe will have to be that, already, the pen nib is showing signs of wear; while it did come with three starter replacement nibs, I've never once had to change the nib on the Graphire. Other than that, though, a solid purchase.

On an odd side note, I'll have to say it felt really good going into Office Depot and buying the highest-end version of the Bamboo on the spot. It's good to have a job again, haha!

Bamboo Create

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Book review: Partials by Dan Wells

The human race is all but extinct after a war with Partials—engineered organic beings identical to humans—has decimated the population. Reduced to only tens of thousands by RM, a weaponized virus to which only a fraction of humanity is immune, the survivors in North America have huddled together on Long Island while the Partials have mysteriously retreated. The threat of the Partials is still imminent, but, worse, no baby has been born immune to RM in more than a decade. Our time is running out.

Kira, a sixteen-year-old medic-in-training, is on the front lines of this battle, seeing RM ravage the community while mandatory pregnancy laws have pushed what's left of humanity to the brink of civil war, and she's not content to stand by and watch. But as she makes a desperate decision to save the last of her race, she will find that the survival of humans and Partials alike rests in her attempts to uncover the connections between them—connections that humanity has forgotten, or perhaps never even knew were there.

Dan Wells, acclaimed author of I Am Not a Serial Killer, takes readers on a pulsepounding journey into a world where the very concept of what it means to be human is in question—one where our humanity is both our greatest liability and our only hope for survival.

If I had known that this book was the start of a series, I would not have read it... Because it's so freaking good! With only a prequel out, and the next book in the sequence coming out in February, I'm kicking myself in the butt for falling for another series. Problem is, I'm a very impatient person, and after reading this book there are still so many questions that were left unanswered, and many more that appeared near the end.

One thing that I really enjoyed was the well fleshed-out world that this book takes place in. The book takes place in post-apocalyptic America, in what was Long Island. The last remaining humans live there, and, due to an engineered virus called RM, every baby both dies within a few days of being both. On the mainland are the Partials, genetically engineered super soldiers who are unfriendly, to say the least. I was surprised that I actually enjoyed the post-apocalyptic thing going on in this book, since I'm not really a fan of it usually, but it was used and mentioned only when necessary. The conflict and focus isn't on how everything is in ruins, and how nature is slowly retaking the abandoned parts of the city, it's about RM, and the race the main character, Kira, is in to find a cure.

Kira is a solid enough character; my only complaint would be that, for a sixteen year old, she's a bit to mature, too knowledgeable for her age. At the start of the story she becomes a medical intern for the only hospital's maternity ward. Yes, in the society she lives in, she would be more quickly educated, but I still an not sure the author can really get away with her being sixteen without a bit of eyebrow raising. The thing is she needs to be sixteen, the story demands that she be sixteen, but I'm not completely sold.

Otherwise, the story is solid, and though I haven't read the prequel yet, the author seems to have thought out the implications of the events that happen in the book. The Partials, in particular, are very well thought out, and I ready appreciated the detail put into how they work and why. The book drags a bit for the first almost half (though the first half isn't boring, and is definitely necessary, it's mundane, and mostly involves showing the reader how the last remains of humanity are living on a day-to-day basis), but once you hit the halfway point things start happening very quickly, and it's becomes worth the extended intro. Remember this is intended to be a series, and needs a solid base with which to work with.

Genre: YA Science Fiction, Apocalyptic
Pages: 480
Writing: 4/5
Plot: 5/5
Characters: 3/5
Worth the Read?: Definitely, if you're willing to get caught up in a series

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Atlanta Trip

So, last week, I went up with the boyfriend and a mutual friend to Atlanta for a little mini-vacation, and it was quite a trip!

The reason why we were going up to Atlanta in the first place was because the friend had one last semester at Georgia Tech, and needed to drive himself up there anyway. So we hitched a ride for a little five-day adventure. I've only driven through Atlanta before this trip (since I-75 cuts right through the city), so I jumped no the chance to see a new city.

My two road trip buddies.

Yay for Georgia!

We didn't really do much when we got there, more chilling than anything. But we did go to a particularly cool bar called Ormsby's.

It was a pretty snazzy bar, and the space was beautiful.We only stayed for a drink, but it was definitely worth the visit.

In the end, though, the best part will have to be the plane ride. I've always loved flying, and this time was no different (though it was a pity that I didn't get a window seat, but whatever).