Lots of Terraria, both with Azy and by myself. :3 Which is fun but probably not what I should be doing. >>;;;
Lots of Terraria, both with Azy and by myself. :3 Which is fun but probably not what I should be doing. >>;;;
"The Intrepid ’20s Women Who Formed an All-Female Global Exploration Society".
"Finding Brooklyn’s Ghost Streams, With Old Maps and New Technology".
"In 1975, a Cat Co-Authored a Physics Paper".
"Gereja Ayam, the Abandoned Chicken Church".
"Signal de Botrange: The highest point in Belgium is a staircase to nowhere".
"Shaolin Flying Monks Theatre: A magical work of architecture where a wind turbine enables monks to levitate".
"Abandoned London Post Office Railway: An unmanned underground railroad created to transport London’s mail beneath its congested streets ran for seven decades, until it was unceremoniously shut down and abandoned".
"Underground Railroad Memorial at McDonald's".
"Forgotten Giants: Six beautiful wooden giants are hidden around Copenhagen".
"Tiny Mouse Shops of Malmö: Swedish mice can dine at the Nuts of Life restaurant or take a date to the amousement park".
"FBI Spy House: A painfully obvious spy house sits right across the street from the Russian Embassy".
"Why Justin Timberlake Sings ‘May’ Instead of ‘Me’: Linguistics and vocal styling converge in this late ’90s pop trend".
"One of the Earliest Industrial Spies Was a French Missionary Stationed in China: When he wasn’t converting people, Father Francois Xavier d’Entrecolles was extracting trade secrets from porcelain producers".
"The Unsung Delight of a Well-Designed Endpaper".
"The Violent Ice Cream Wars of 1980s Scotland".
"The Surprising Challenges of Making Things Vegan".
"Judean Date Palm Methuselah: This tree was extinct for a thousand years before sprouting again from a 2,000-year-old seed".
The Establishment ( 17 links, including discussion of suicide, body positivity, and fatphobia )
Right now, I'm awake, but I've still got pretty bad cramps. I think I can manage with the cramps as long as I don't need to walk too far or for too long.
I managed to start my Not Prime Time story last night in spite of still having no ideas on the plot. I know the characters and starting situation, but there needs to be a goal/event of some sort because the characters aren't going to come together unless forced by circumstances. I don't know... Is there a random disasters generator somewhere online? I also need to find where I saved off the canonical timeline so that I can figure out what year it is in the story. Maybe there's something real world that I could use. Not a real disaster-- that would be tacky at best-- but some hint of something that could have been and wasn't.
And the chronology I've got doesn't cover the pertinent part of canon. There's a time skip between what it does cover and when I need to set this. I don't know how long that is. I don't think it can be less than two years, and it seems unlikely to be more than five, but I don't know.
I also wrote another 700 words on other things last night.
I was considering signing up for another fic exchange, but the deadline for that is some unspecified time today, and I keep looking at the options and realizing that what I would be likely to write and what I would like to read are both out of step with what other people seem to be interested in. Maybe I could write a treat or something if I have time and inspiration or do a pinch hit if I see one that's a good match.
I have a library book due tomorrow that can't be renewed. I haven't started it yet, so I rather suspect I'm not going to. Ah, well. I can put another hold on it. The waitlist only has one person on it, so I should get it fairly soon.
And speaking of useless in the category of makeup how goddamn hard is it to find a small open rectangular box in which to put my damn lipsticks? Apparently very. Is the answer. Nothing at Ten Thousand Villages, nothing at the antique store. I suspect I'm probably going to end up making one my own self out of leather? I don't even know. I do know I spent an hour trying to arrange my Ulta shopping cart into a form I was comfortable with, then reminded myself that stress-buying makeup primer and eyelash curlers was a bad habit to get into and stopped.
I can tell I'm stressed. Not just the endless shopping but I have no focus for writing work when day job is slow, and it's been slow maybe not so much this week? But last week it was dead as hell. Got nothing done.
I did at least get stuff done until I collapsed on the couch post-writing. Starlight was written some in, and now that I've shoved things around in the back of my head they're coming out more orderly, albeit resembling the first half not at all. So that's going to be fun to match up, argh. That's probably half the mental block of putting off sitting my ass down and writing it, I see you mindgoblin. Fuck off. I don't know what to do about the general lack of focus/exhaustion for anything else, except just to keep ploughing through it. Maybe if I try to start too many times in an hour I go on a one hour news fast. That might even work.
My bras came though, yay! Stupid expensive things. One box of makeup came, I have no idea where the Sephora is, which is even more irritating. And the other shirt I'd completely forgotten I ordered from Kohl's. So all in all it wasn't that horrible a day. I just miss the energy I had when things were good and I didn't have to worry about the incompetent fucking wannabe oligarchs running the country.
I'm not sure if she was smiling at Miley or the fact that I pushed my cat off a table with a stick. But I prefer the latter because it was funny the way Kiki fell off the table lol.
One of the benefits of being on a higher floor of the hotel, even if this also means a lot of rather tedious waiting for lifts. I was going to take and post a photo, but I really don't think that my present state of tiredness is a good state in which to get to grips with DW photo posting. Also, on essaying to take a photo for later presentation, realised that the grimy marks on the window would be rather obtrusive.
Quite a full day, which started with waking up rather earlier than I had hoped, but not horribly so.
Socialising has taken place. There was going to be a walk, but then it started to rain (I wouldn;t say there was no chance of a walk that day, but not at that particular time).
Also have been on one panel, which I think suffered a little from ambiguity in framing its terms but nonetheless evoked some interesting discussion.
Observations of note: in the stuffed toy and knickknackery shop just around the corner in State Street, there is a stufft swan, right at the front of the window display: also an inflatable pool version. However, I should eschew props for my reading.
I finally stopped sneezing and such around 11 this morning. The key when this happens is for me to dehydrate myself which kind of freaks out people who are trying to take care of me. Most of the time, drinking more water is good when I'm sick, but this particular thing won't stop until I dry out enough.
I slept badly last night. Part of that was the runny nose (I didn't even try to use the c-PAP), part of that was the cramps, and part of it was different parts of my body wanting different temperatures. My upper body was cold, but I had to keep moving my feet out from under the blankets and shifting around to find cool spots on the bed for them. Sadly, no cool spot ever last more than about four seconds.
I took a cab to my appointment yesterday and then took the bus home afterward. I probably should have either taken a cab home or waited for Scott to pick me up. I almost missed my stop due to just completely spacing out with exhaustion. I did a little bit of walking around and playing Ingress after my appointment. I'd probably have done a little more, but Cordelia's after school meeting got canceled, and she was worried about where I was.
Tomorrow should just be more of the same, though also Mama's hired a painter to get the house done because tbh some of our house is just Too Difficult for people without scaffolding etc - both high and also awkward, noooot a great combo, haha. Anyway, they're starting tomorrow, so we'll see what happens there. :3 Hopefully no dramas, but ~who knows~ hahaha.
The first is
A song you like with a colour in the title, so I went for White winter hymnal by Fleet Foxes. I don't always love the kind of very blurry musical style that Fleet Foxes go for, but I got really fond of this song a few years back and it's one that always raises a smile when it comes on shuffle.
People are generally linking to YouTube, and I'd never actually seen the accompanying video for this one before. It's kind of a cool claymation thing, so I'm glad I searched it up.
( Embedded video )
First, I noticed my friends doing the Salty Meme, which was good wholesome fun and should be reproduced here.
Second, I happened to spy with my little eye the most majestic* piece of fanart ever conceived, and this was honest-to-god serendipity, I swear, I could not have predicted such a thing would be realized in my lifetime.
Tumblr, you have won me over again. Somehow, against all odds. All I need now is to have my dash flooded with Hawkephine, which... goddamnit, how does this still not exist? ISTG this fandom cannot be trusted to do anything. Back to your regularly scheduled salt.
* I feel honor-bound to at least warn you that this is absolutely the farthest from SFW you can get.
"Artists are creating gorgeous mermaid art all #MerMay". [The Daily Dot]
"Rihanna and Lupita Nyong'o will costar in a buddy movie directed by Ava DuVernay for Netflix".
"Josh Boone Says THE NEW MUTANTS Is A Full-Fledged Horror Movie".
"The Origins of Anime: Watch Free Online 64 Animations That Launched the Japanese Anime Tradition". [Open Culture] (Note: I haven't delved into this yet.)
"How dogs get older: A fascinating and deeply touching photography project".
Via larryhammer, "Photographer Uncovers The White Ravens Of Legend In West Coast Forest".
"Fallen Cherry Blossom Petals Fill a Lake in Japan for Naturally Beautiful Scenes From Above".
"All The Wrong People Are Asking All The Wrong Questions About Fidget Spinners". [Sarah Kurchak at The Establishment]
Via [flocked], "Angry otter pursues Scottish man". [~40 sec. video]
"A Moose Destroyed a Flowerbed Planted to Celebrate Canada’s Sesquicentennial". [Atlas Obscura]
"Fairy Princesses And Mermaid Queens Have Been Waiting For These Fishnet Stockings".
"Why Americans Smile So Much".
"Our Mothers as We Never Saw Them". "For me, as for many daughters, the time before my mother became a mother is a string of stories, told and retold: the time she got hit by a car and had amnesia; the time she sold her childhood Barbie to buy a ticket to Woodstock; the time she worked as a waitress at Howard Johnson’s, struggling to pay her way through her first year at Rutgers. The old photos of her are even more compelling than the stories because they’re a historical record, carrying the weight of fact, even if the truth there is slippery: the trick of an image, and so much left outside the frame. These photos serve as a visual accompaniment to the myths. Because any story about your mother is part myth, isn’t it?" There's an accompanying collection of photos on Instagram: mothersbefore.
Via ironymaiden, "I Got Drunk With The Funeral Industry To Find Out What Happens When We Die". [Buzzfeed, 2015] "The Ideal Death Show initially started out in 2011, not as an industry shindig, but as a Six Feet Under fan convention in Bournemouth. It was run by a guy called Brian Jenner, who is a professional speechwriter and not remotely connected to the funeral industry except for this one weird thing. [...] When everyone turned up for the Friday night welcome wake, it was clear that what Jenner had accidentally organised was an industry meeting for people who worked with the dead; undertakers on a busman’s holiday, stood around a cardboard coffin in a room full of lilies.
The next year he stripped away the HBO pretext and just made it that: a bunch of people talking about death, once a year, with other people who know about death. They needed it – death can literally be a lonely business."
--"You Can Stay Overnight In A Jail Cell At This Haunted Prison In Canada". (I'll pass, thanks.)
--"10 Beautiful Photos Of Dogs Underwater" by photographer Seth Casteel.
--"I’m A Barista From Korea Who Creates Art On Coffee".
And this year I did manage to get a massage from the amazing massage therapist at the place on the square, it was quite entirely wonderful.
Yesterday and earlier today it was still quite cool and cloudy, but seems to have warmed up by late afternoon.
Spent a mostly quiet and lazy day before going to the A Room of One's Own Reading.
Have managed to see and have some degree of conversation with the old familiar faces.
Have registered and must now look through the schedule to see what (apart from panels I am actually on) I want to go to.
Really, no news here, pass along.
Also now that I think about it I kind of like the idea that I've become either advanced enough or familiar enough that we do the get there sit around in street clothes sharing a moment of "I don' wanna" before we get started. It doesn't help my confidence that I can help Groot teach at all, but it's fun!
I need to get better about my drawing discipline (there was a plan to do fifteen minutes of sketching every lunch that lasted for about a week) but I am at least getting better at my life model quick sketches. I was very good and did not buy the necklace I saw at Ten Thousand Villages, I looked at it and checked the price and marked it out for later and I will buy it after some time when I haven't just spent a bajillion dollars on new makeup and a few clothes. It will probably still be there in a month or two.
I also kind of want that pink unicorn essence primer, never mind that I don't use makeup primer although I plan on trying it given that I got a free sample of Tarte's, it's pink and it comes in a shiny bottle and it screams "Hello I am a lovely and powerful courtesan" or something.
... no wait, I take it back, I think it does the same thing the serum I already have does. Also at some point I need to make a list of all the shit I need to try or try to do. So far it's primer, waterline eyeliner, side by side comparison of translucent powder baking vs layering my own foundation powder over my face, and working on pressed shadow normal person eyeshadow. Actually since I need to take pictures for my tutorial tonight I might just do a side by side test of the translucent powder vs my usual powder.
My brain is so tired. And GoogleDocs is being a pain when I try to load my files. And it's cold out and I just want to curl up under blankets and sleep until the weekend or something. And instead I have writing to do, and languages, and so on. Maybe I will go to sleep early though. I woke up early thanks to the cats galumphing around like pinballs.
I'm kind of amazed that these are my drawings, from reference images (but not traced): they look recognisably like human bodies, and while I'm not happy about the heads - there have got to be better ways of suggesting heads and faces, all I manage is awkward - I am starting to capture the human form with a few bold lines and I'm liking the results.
This is nothing short of miraculous.
The number one tool for this has been the practice of lines: straight lines, C-curves, S-curves; learning to draw them boldly and confidently and more or less where I want them to go. Combine that with a drawing course that teaches you to apply these lines boldly, to capture the energy of a human body rather than trying to find exact lines, and suddenly I get the feeling that I'm doing the right thing (just need to work out a lot of details) rather than doing something completely hopeless.
And yes, I am currently sourcing my poses on body-positive blogs: I don't find the 3D dummy all that interesting to draw, and seeing pictures of squishy bodies looking fantastic is a really useful exercise for me.
and the above is a month. And while I have practiced _some_ drawing, I have not practiced anywhere near enough drawing to justify the improvement, which kind of confirms what I've worked out anyway: if I can find a way to work that suits my learning style - kinesthetic, Gestalt-oriented - I find most things relatively easy. (I'll never be _great_ at this drawing thing, but I think I can get to 'competent' from here). If something is presented in a way that makes no sense to me - if I am trying to learn sequentially and if the practices is stressful - I can suck terribly badly and feel that I'll never get there.
The answer to that is not to practice harder. Practicing things that are stressful is counterproductive for me. Looking for 'the right way to learn' is, of course, a path with a very obvious failure mode - never applying oneself, and always looking for 'the right' method that will miraculously get you to where you want to be, without having to put in any of the work, but while, in principle, I am extremely opposed to that idea, I have to admit that _it works for me_.
And it's hard to talk about this without sounding like I'm bragging. I'm all too aware of my artistic shortcomings; I'm a perfectionist, I can see a dozen things wrong with every drawing I make and I'm fully aware that there's probably a dozen more that I can't see because I'm not trained _enough_, I can only draw the poses I see, not any other possible poses, but when I started this six weeks ago I thought that maybe in a year I'd be able to draw like this: confident lines with recognisable results. And I'm willing to bet that if I had stuck to techniques that don't work for me, tasks that seem unsurmountable, exercises that stress me out, that make me feel completely incompetent and like I will never learn - I would not have reached this stage yet, if ever.
This, in short, is why learning styles matter, and why we need to take responsibility for our learning, and find out what does and doesn't work, and insist on finding resources that resonate: there are no shortcuts to becoming skilled, but if you can follow a straight path instead of floundering around, you *will* learn things in a reasonable amount of time, whatever that thing is.
Talent might get you there faster, by more paths, and take you further, but the right teaching will get you places surprisingly quickly and painlessly.
I can't wait to continue with my courses and learn more; I just wanted to bounce a little at how far I've come.