30 September 2011

Life of Art SitRep #86 The coding, the coding!

Every week, I work towards creating a life of art for myself. This is the zigzag filled journey.

Play along in the comments with your own pursuits if you'd like. (That's where I'll cheer you on.)
*******
This week, I

  • Shot 146 photographs of sculptures, grounds, llamas; and 1 video of llamas.

  • Went for a sculpture walk.

  • Finished fixing all image links in my links file, huzzah! Replaced all "related designs" image links that needed it.

  • As part of Zazzle's changes to makes things "easier" for sellers, I revised or removed subtitles from product description files, and revised product tags through North Window and for all of my digital designs.

    Then I updated 21 photograph product lines with fixed links, revised descriptions, tags & categories; revised product orders. Also finished updating all 8 digital design descriptions, tags, categories, etc.

  • Changed all image thumbnail links to ones from posters where possible. Postcards and mousepad thumbnails display disproportionately to poster thumbnails. Alas, this means I should redo 10 of the product lines I already revised. [Zag!] Later. For products without posters, I revised image size to 100 px if needed. Swapped out related designs links where needed.

  • Zig! Discovered 100.jpg throws off alignment of related designs thumbnails, so switched them back to 125.jpg for verticals and card images.

  • Got my Red Hibiscus With Raindrops and Melting Snow canvas prints featured on a Macro Photography lens:
    Red Hibiscus With Raindrops wrapped canvasMelting Snow wrapped canvas

  • Reordered my Rocklawn Arts store a bit.

  • Added my products/store link to 9 lenses/blogs.

  • Fixed image links in my 50 Art Polls lens. Fortunately my other lenses didn't need any fixing, yay!

  • Rearranged store again. Zag!

  • Tweeted a sale and some items.

  • Watched the final day of "Photoshop CS5 Intensive with Lesa Snider" on Creative Live.

  • *******
    How are your pursuits going?


    Two years ago on TTaT: One of those days

    24 September 2011

    Say Something Nice

    Love this, just what I needed today.


    A year ago on TTaT: Life of Art SitRep #33

    23 September 2011

    Life of Art SitRep #85 Photoshop FTW!

    Every week, I work towards creating a life of art for myself. This is the zigzag filled journey.

    Play along in the comments with your own pursuits if you'd like. (That's where I'll cheer you on.)
    *******
    This week, I

  • Shot 299 photographs: birthdays, miniature golf, goats, bison, ponies.

  • Watched "Photoshop CS5 Intensive with Lesa Snider" on Creative Live. If it's Friday afternoon, I'm watching the final day LIVE right now. You could too!

    If you want to learn Photoshop CS5, I highly recommend purchasing the course. It's only $79 until Friday, September 23, 2011 9:00PM PT. After that it's $99. Either way it's still a great deal for 24 hours of instruction including exercise files so you can follow along with all of the techniques she explains and demonstrates. Very cool.

  • Fixed 3 more image links in links file.

  • Finished reading Photoshop CS5: The Missing Manual by Lesa Snider. Including all 5 online appendices, Huzzah!

  • Tweeted, FB'd a sale.

  • *******
    How are your pursuits going?


    Two years ago on TTaT: Pizza and the patience it tries

    17 September 2011

    Photoshop CS5: The Missing Manual

    Photoshop CS5: The Missing Manual40. Photoshop CS5: The Missing Manual by Lesa Snider

    My rating: 5 of 5 stars


    Having just finished reading all 782 pages of the print manual as well as all 5 appendices available online, I can safely say that I wish I had a photographic memory. Nonetheless, I learned a great deal about what is possible in Photoshop and how to accomplish it.

    I've been teaching myself bits and pieces of the program for years, but this is the first time I felt like the gaps were filled in. Snider's conversational tone is easy to read and she's very thorough when writing out the steps to accomplish various tasks. She also provides a bit of background to the tools, filters, and such, providing an idea of what settings to try and which to avoid.

    The book is written for both Mac and PC users listing Mac keyboard shortcuts first (which I find a nice change of pace).

    One great advantage is that you do not have to read the book from start to finish. I followed the nonlinear chapter order that Snider recommended for photographers at the beginning of the book and then went back to read the rest. If you used the contents or index to jump straight to something you wanted to learn how to do, I feel confident that you would find all of the information you needed. If she references info from a different point in the book, she includes the page number(s) on which it can be found.

    The appendix on Adobe Bridge was particularly helpful. The appendices, practice files, websites mentioned in the book, and additional tutorials are all available on the Missing CD-ROM page. Definitely worth checking out.

    I'm really looking forward to her FREE Photoshop CS5 Intensive on Creative Live next week. If you can't watch it during the day, they re-play each day in the evening, also for free. You can also purchase the course as a download.

    In the meantime, you can win an eBook copy of Lesa Snider's Photoshop CS5 Missing Manual from O'Reilly Media. Until September 19th, they are giving away 1 copy per day.
    To enter to win a copy of this eBook simply answer the following question on Twitter:

    Q: Why are you excited about the Photoshop CS5 Intensive course with Lesa Snider?
    To qualify, you must include this link in your tweet: http://cr8.lv/psdlesa

    They'll pick one favorite Tweet to win an eBook each day. Good luck!


    A year ago on TTaT: Life of Art SitRep #32

    15 September 2011

    Life of Art SitRep #84 ROYGBIV take two

    Every week, I work towards creating a life of art for myself. This is the zigzag filled journey.

    Play along in the comments with your own pursuits if you'd like. (That's where I'll cheer you on.)
    *******
    This week, I

  • Shot 36 photographs: creek, mandevilla.

  • Made Rainbow Polka Dots on Black image, wrote a description for it, and created its product line:
    Rainbow Polka Dots on Black mug
    Rainbow Polka Dots on Black keychain
    Rainbow Polka Dots on Black t-shirt

  • Made Rainbow Polka Dots on White tie, skateboard:
    Rainbow Polka Dots on White skateboardRainbow Polka Dots on White tie

  • Revised Rainbow Polka Dots on White description to include transparency and how to change BG instructions and updated products.

  • Watched "Taking Care of Business with Tamara Lackey" Creative Live workshop. So great! Bought it. Several things I need to hear over.

  • Made my 50% for 50-for-50. donation on behalf of Rocklawn Arts. My donation put the total over $59,000 which was surprisingly satisfying. Colleen Wainwright aka the communicatrix raised over $60,000 (not including some possible matching grants) for the nonprofit WriteGirl.

    Amazing. What a way to turn 50! Happy (extended) Birthday, Colleen!

    Not sure what I'm doing for mine on Monday, but the 50-for-50 experience has made me reconsider how I feel about it and what I expect from it.

  • Took off the 50% for 50-for-50 store intro and put the old one back up.

  • Repurposed 50% for 50-for-50 bit on Rocklawn Arts lens, deleted outdated coupon codes there and on American Southwest scenes lens.

  • Discovered that I need to check the related designs part of my descriptions on *all* of my designs. sigh. Some of them aren't showing up. Image links changed it seems. Probably due to the recent print/poster overhaul. Argh.

    Started going through links file and correcting blank links. Much more work to go. Now this is something I wish I had an intern for.

  • Finally revised print description add-on and updated all 66 poster descriptions in my store with it.

  • Took 50-for-50 promotion info off store links in blogs.

  • Renamed photo files in 3 folders.

  • Watched "Border Breakout in Photoshop CS4 and CS5," "Adding and Manlipulating Layer Styles," "Split Toning Images in Camera Raw," "How To Naturally Extend A Canvas" Photoshop tutorials.

  • Finished reading Popular Photography Aug. 2011 issue.


  • *******
    How are your pursuits going?


    A year ago on TTaT: On the road with construction

    08 September 2011

    Life of Art SitRep #83 Last chance, yo

    Every week, I work towards creating a life of art for myself. This is the zigzag filled journey.

    Play along in the comments with your own pursuits if you'd like. (That's where I'll cheer you on.)
    *******
    2 Days Left! Through September 10, 2011, I'm donating 50% of my proceeds from Rocklawn Arts to 50 for 50, Colleen Wainwright's amazing fundraiser for WriteGirl, "a nonprofit organization for high school girls centered on the craft of creative writing and empowerment through self-expression."

    My photographs and designs are available on a wide variety of cool gifts: cards, prints/posters, binders, postage, mugs, magnets, iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch cases, Keds sneakers, and other delightful sundries.

    You can get free standard shipping (details at my shop), so no excuses! Buy a postcard or something and help me help Colleen raise $50,000 for WriteGirl.

    Please help spread the word!

    This week, I

  • Shot 318 photographs: flowers, misty lake, creek.

  • Made wrapped canvas versions of 54 of my images:
    ImageImage

  • Created Rainbow Polka Dots on White product line:
    Image
    Image
    Image

  • Made wrapped canvas horizontal and vertical templates as well as new poster templates.

  • Added wrapped canvases to featured products.

  • Re-hid product types in sidebar that started showing up again in my store.

  • Renamed photo files in 11 folders.

  • Emailed North Window Arch poster to promotional blog.

  • Updated coupon codes on Rocklawn Arts lens and American Southwest Scenes lens.

  • Tweeted a bunch of posters with sale info.

  • Finished reading Just Kids by Patti Smith.

  • *******
    How are your pursuits going?


    A year ago on TTaT: Trillium and self-portrait

    06 September 2011

    Just Kids

    Just Kids39. Just Kids by Patti Smith

    My rating: 5 of 5 stars


    I knew Patti Smith was a rockstar who sang a version of "Gloria" that I really like. I knew Robert Mapplethorpe was a photographer who shot flowers as well as controversial images of naked men engaging in homosexual acts that many considered pornography, sparking national debates on the funding of the National Endowment for the Arts when I was growing up.

    I had no idea that there was a connection between these two, and a profound one at that. Just Kids is their story, of the poet and the artist and their journey to rockstar and photographer. It's a coming of age tale set in New York City in the late 60s and 70s, a raw, gripping depiction full of odd and famous people.

    The community of artists who lived and passed through the Chelsea Hotel both amazes and makes me wistful for those creative connections. Theirs were truly lives of art. However, Smith makes it clear that the road to and from there was not an easy one.

    What fascinates me is the creative people they were when they met. Robert made necklaces, collages, and installations of found objects for years before taking his first Polaroids. Patti wrote poems and made drawings, each inspiring and urging the other to new creative heights.

    Just Kids reads like an all-access pass to their relationship and that period of time.

    Thanks again to Kevin who sent me his copy of the book!


    4 years ago on TTaT: Ruins where I can get them, Vol. 2

    02 September 2011

    Life of Art SitRep #82

    Every week, I work towards creating a life of art for myself. This is the zigzag filled journey.

    Play along in the comments with your own pursuits if you'd like. (That's where I'll cheer you on.)
    *******
    8 Days Left! Through September 10, 2011, I'm donating 50% of my proceeds from Rocklawn Arts to 50 for 50, Colleen Wainwright's amazing fundraiser for WriteGirl, "a nonprofit organization for high school girls centered on the craft of creative writing and empowerment through self-expression."

    My photographs and designs are available on a wide variety of cool gifts: cards, prints/posters, binders, postage, mugs, magnets, iPhone/iPad/iPod Touch cases, Keds sneakers, and other delightful sundries.

    You can get free standard shipping (details at my shop), so no excuses! Buy a postcard or something and help me help Colleen raise $50,000 for WriteGirl.

    Please help spread the word!

    This week, I

  • Shot 219 photographs: storm damage, flooded golf course, hibiscus, etc.

  • Tweeted, FB'd, zBlogged and RA blogged 50% off posters sale.

    Zazzle has completely revamped their poster interface so it's simple to select size and paper type as well as mattes and frames if you like. They're also offering wrapped canvas now. I need to rewrite all of my poster descriptions to account for the changes, but for these improvements, I'm glad to do it.
    Save 50% on all wrapped canvas, prints, and posters!

    Code: DECKYOURWALL
    Offer is valid through September 7, 2011 at 11:59pm PT.

  • Made River Water Ripples, Sandstone Fins cards with message templates.
    ImageImage

  • Started Rainbow Polka Dots image. Made 2 versions of it. Went back to first version, initial instincts were right, and finished it. Excited because I was able to apply things I'd learned about Photoshop as well as suss out some great time savers for arranging my various layers. It'll be in the shop soon!

  • Renamed photo files in 12 folders.

  • Submitted/emailed Circle With Fire Escape Poster to promotion blog.

  • Added text about inspiration to Rocklawn Arts lens.

  • Swapped out Downtown Kansas City and North Window cards for ones with templates in Rocklawn Arts lens.

  • Earned a lens boost. Was going to give it to RocklawnArts lens but changed my mind when I saw lenses with previous boosts or house ad got greyed out. I'd rather give RA an ad if I can score one. So instead, gave it to 50 Art Polls which may expose more people to my art and yield me more points.

  • Tweeted lots of posters with sale info.

  • Watched "Anatomy of a Photoshoot with Mark Wallace" on Creative Live.

  • *******
    How are your pursuits going?


    Two years ago on TTaT: Gettin' My Groove On... (vol. ix)

    01 September 2011

    And then there was Wind...

    Though we got 5.5" of rain, I was actually more concerned when the wind picked up. Fortunately we didn't lose power, but about an hour after the sun went down there was a huge cracking sound followed by louds thuds. Peering out into the near darkness, I saw another section of tree fall in the backyard.




    Probably not our tree as it happens, but who wants to quibble over the property line with an elderly widow? Turns out it is worth calling the insurance company though, even though the tree didn't crush anything. By some sign up promotion there happens to be some additional riders, one for tree removal. Sure there's a $500 deductible, but that call was still worth $500.

    Overall, I feel fortunate we survived Irene this well.


    A year ago on TTaT: From the vault: Phoenix Rising