18 January 2019

Life of Art SitRep #466 Business Stamp, Wrapping, Leggings, and Bag Tags

Despite being a more behind the scenes week, I created a variety of new items for my shop.

Created a Custom Company Business Logo Return Address Self-inking Stamp. 9 ink colors and 7 housing colors are available. Click to personalize it with your own logo and address:

Created Plaid Pattern Wrapping Paper, Ribbon, Tissue Paper, Gift Bags, and Monogrammed Stickers in several colors:

Created Plaid Pattern Leggings in several colors. Click through to see the variety by clicking the colored dots under "Design Theme" in the sidebar of the product page.

Also created several luggage tags:

See all the latest products I've created here.

Created Monogrammed Golf Balls and Accessories collection:

Also shot 29 photographs, culled 10.

Pinned to boards at Rocklawn Arts on Pinterest. Created Travel Tips, Gear, and Destinations board.

Watched "How to get better at the things you care about" by Eduardo Briceño. Basically we all need to be more like Beyoncé, no joke. She has the learning zone vs. performance zone cycle nailed.

Read "How to Change the background in Photoshop, quick, easy tutorial" by Colin Smith.

Made monthly backups. Have you backed up lately?

10 years ago on TTaT: Winter wonderland, again

11 January 2019

05 January 2019


The temperature got to 41 F (5 C) yesterday while also fairly sunny so I decided to get a haircut. I knew my mom wanted one also so I offered to take her.

On the drive up she started telling me about a show she'd seen on CNN called "This if Life with Lisa Ling" and an episode Ling had done about furries.

"They said they'd gotten a bad rap because people said they were perverts."

I wasn't surprised. The only way we'd come to know about them was on crime shows where they were portrayed as fetishists.

Mom described the people interviewed, those with debilitating shyness, PTSD, physical ailments and how putting on a costume freed them to assume personas filled with joy.

"You were shy as a kid, you still are," Mom said.

"I'm introverted," I said. "Shyness often gets linked to feelings of embarrassment and that's not it."

"No," Mom agreed.

Looking it up now shy is defined as "being reserved or having or showing nervousness or timidity in the company of other people." (OK, that's fair.)

Some of the people Mom described from the episode couldn't cope with going to the grocery store or out at all really. "You can go to the library," she said.

"Yeah, that kind of stuff doesn't bother me," I said. "But it's not like I haven't gone over in my head a thousand times what I'm going to say to try to describe how I want my hair cut."

"That's different," Mom said, "I'm doing that too."

"Yeah, I guess so."

She described kids who were also getting into being furries and wondered what had made them so withdrawn but got emotional when describing a Dad who was tearing up describing how it had made his daughter so much happier.

The recurring theme was therapeutic transformation. Being furries freed them to be joyful.

"I don't think I have that much creativity," Mom said.

"I love stuffed animals but I've never wanted to be one. I don't think wearing a mask would have the same effect for me."

I just want to be myself. Well, a better version of myself but one that doesn't have to wear anything uncomfortable.

10 years ago on TTaT: Begin anyway

04 January 2019

Life of Art SitRep #464 Finding the Groove

Happy New Year! I hope your 2019 is filled with health, happiness, security, success (however you measure it), and some adventure.

It's only been three days since the start of the year and I'm easing back into the work groove, so there's not a lot to report.

Did a variety of end of month and year updates, research, and analyses. Still some more to go.

Created a Light Coral Orange Plaid Pattern Throw Pillow:

Updated several elements of my Rocklawn Arts store's home page including the category order, banner, featured collection (Popular Customizable 2019 Calendar Products) and product folder (Home).

Also did some other store organization work.

Pinned to boards at Rocklawn Arts on Pinterest.

Created Colorful Home Decor board on Pinterest.

Watched "Behind the Art: The Path to Becoming A Working Artist with Lisa Congdon | CreativeLive."

Updated © notices here and on Rocklawn Arts blogs. Don't forget to do yours if it doesn't auto-update.

How was your week?

10 years ago on TTaT: Saying it well

03 January 2019

2018 Book Report

In 2018, I read over 8,000 pages across 61 books.

Lots of graphic novels with good doses of art, meditation, and some nonfiction.

Click here to see GoodReads' fancy chart display of all but one the books I read. The missing book was an epic bit of fan fiction which is actually the longest book I read at 444 pages.

10 years ago on TTaT: Note to self, vol. XV

31 December 2018

Life of Art 2018 Roundup

Happy New Year, awesome readers! I hope your 2019 is happy, healthy, and full of splendid adventures.

For the past 463 Fridays, I've been tracking my efforts to create a life of art for myself. Here's a look at some of what I accomplished in 2018.

I created many new designs for my shop including graduation and birthday invitations and party supplies, gingham check patterns with monograms, photograph templates, holiday designs, and political designs.

Since I started overhauling my store's organization moving from having each design in one folder to separating them into categories like home decor, cases, and celebrations, it's harder to track the overall design count.

I can tell you that I added 1193 new products to my shop in 2018.

Here are a few designs from the beginning of the year before I shifted my organizational approach:
Resolve to RESIST40 and Fabulous Party Supplies and GiftsAre You Wearing Green? ShamrockIrish Lass, Green Shamrock

Irish Lad, Green ShamrockSt. Patrick's Day Green ShamrockEaster Egg Hunt Basket PhotoGun Control Now

Vintage Easter Bunny IllustrationColorful Easter Eggs in Grass PhotoHand Drawn Fancy Easter Eggs Adult ColoringMamá Número Uno

Happy Mother's Day Custom PhotoRegister to Vote

I created a wide variety of new collections you can see here. For example,

See all of the Collections at Rocklawn Arts together and click on any you would like to see more of.

I added over 24 New Product Types:

Guest Books

Trucker Hats

Embroidered Hats

Luggage Tags


Post-it Notes


Paper Napkins

Edible treats



Acrylic Photo Blocks

Business Cards

Business Card Holders

Hand fans

golf towels



yard signs

rubber stamps

golf ball

lip balm

yoga mats

(Forgive me for not having time to link to all of them. If there's something that strikes your fancy, leave a comment and I'll be happy to provide a direct link for you.)

See all the latest products I've created here.

Also check out Rocklawn Arts on Pinterest.

The more fun life of art experiences in 2018 were the exhibits, museums, and gardens I toured. Tallying them up, they amount to 9 days spread through the year, down from 16 the previous year due to an injury of a family member. Though few, they did my soul good all the same. I hope to ramp up that number in 2019.

I spent a lot of time watching business webinars, working through a course, and getting some feedback to level up in 2018. My attention was largely divided in 2018, but I look forward to implementing what I've learned in 2019.

In 2019, I created over 1312 photographs and 41 videos (that I deemed worth keeping). Alas I have not gotten much better about sharing them. I'm disinclined to post any of them before they are copyright registered which builds in a lengthy delay by which time my mind is on other things. I need a more systematic approach.

How was your year? What would you like to do more of in 2019?

13 years ago on TTaT: Books - 2005

28 December 2018

Life of Art SitRep #463 A Rarity

Actually did something rare this week: took a couple days completely off and dialed back on working the rest. It's been nice and sorely needed. One of my goals for 2019 is to build more rest time regularly into my schedule.

Shot 56 photographs, 13 videos. Culled 15 photos and 41 from a shoot last week and rated the rest.

Created 3 new plaid throw pillows:

Click to add your own text or to delete it.

Watched 4 webinars on business and goal setting related things.

Read "How to fix edges in Photoshop for perfect cutouts."

Tried some variations on plaid. Simple invert doesn't work to brighten BG colors.

Pinned to boards at Rocklawn Arts on Pinterest.

How was your week?

8 years ago on TTaT: 57. Bridgman's Book of 100 Hands