30 January 2016

What package?

"Claire..." something something "package" something, a voice from down the hall said.

"What?" I was pulling clothes out of the washer and hadn't caught it all.

"Your package is here."

"What package?" I wasn't expecting anything.

"Nexus," she said.

Nexus? "I didn't order anything from them," I called back.

As I hung up another shirt, a happy explanation occurred to me. "Wait. It could be loot. Prize loot from the fundraiser."

I walked down the hall and inspected the box. "Nexus" was printed on the side of it but as part of a larger phrase, "The nexus of comics and pop-culture." That looks promising. I read the address label, confirmed my loot hypothesis, and grinned.

Thank you very much for the books, Worldbuilders!

9 years ago on TTaT: Disorientation

29 January 2016

Life of Art SitRep #312 Art for the sake of Art

Quite a bit of shooting this week, both videos and photographs. 270 of the latter and maybe 25 of the former (I haven't uploaded the latest batch from today). I culled a good many and have more to do.

I'm not sure if I'll do anything with the videos, yet I couldn't resist trying to capture the right timing. I'm still watching for it, even now, but the wind has died down for tonight it seems.

My 2015 photographs also got some attention, albeit in a haphazard fashion. I deleted 124. The more brutal I can be, the less I will have to hunt for the best of the best.

Likewise for potential customers looking at my store. I deleted about 65 items from three different design lines.

On the flip side, I created a Purple Quadrangle Stripes on Grey with Monogram accent pillow:
Custom Monogram Purple Geometric Stripes on Grey Accent Pillow
Custom Monogram Purple Geometric Stripes on Grey Accent Pillow by RocklawnArts
See more Custom monogram purple geometric grey Accent Pillows at zazzle.com

Revamped the Winter Cards, Stamps, Labels, and Seals collection. Although I created them as holiday cards, all of the greetings are easily customizable:

Prepared a new pattern for my shop with a custom name banner, but I need to make some adjustments to the banner size. Why didn't I test out names in Photoshop first? Ah well, live and learn.

Removed the "Featured collection" from my store's main page and moved "Collections" to the top followed by categories and products sold. Doing so lets Collections and Categories show 12 items each instead of only 9, huzzah!

Renamed and edited description and tags a bit on red, white blue chevrons (now diamonds) gift wrap. I dig the repeat pattern.
Red, White, and Blue Diamonds Gift Wrap
Red, White, and Blue Diamonds Gift Wrap by RocklawnArts
Look at other Red white and blue Wrapping Paper at zazzle.com

How was your week?

8 years ago on TTaT: Thirty Year Old Jock-Thug

22 January 2016

Life of Art SitRep #311 Purple Quadrangle Stripes on Grey with Monogram

Another mouthful title. "Geometric Pattern" is a more obvious searchable thing but if I went that route, it would apply to thousands of items in my shop only differentiated by colors. So.... Purple Quadrangle Stripes on Grey with Monogram it is. (Though as you'll see below, I'm trying to vary titles within product lines as well.)

Finished adding the new pattern to my shop:

Rocklawn Arts blogged New Purple Quadrangle Stripes on Grey with Monogram pattern.

Shot over 53 videos of my kinetic sculpture. The latest batch I haven’t uploaded yet.

Downloaded csv files with data from Zazzle, and figured how to sort by columns in Numbers.

Culled some more older products from my store.

Watched “Fix Old Photos With This One Easy Photoshop Trick” clip in blog post on CreativeLive.com.

Updated links file.

Swapped collections on the store pages and sidebars of my blogs.

Added my new pattern to Purple Geometric Gift Wrap Supplies Collection:

Listened to a recording of an art licensing q&a call.

How was your week?

10 years ago on TTaT: Pro-choice

19 January 2016

Inverted Linguistics

A smattering of mail was spread across the table opposite me as I ate lunch. Or breakfast depending on your point of view. First meal of the day around noon, leftover chicken pot pie.

A magazine was mostly upside down and I tried to read the cover, sounding it out in my head:


That doesn't make sense for Popular Photography.

Ex-pirate something?

And then it dawned on me though I was a little sad there were no pirates.


10 years ago on TTaT: 4 years, hot flashes, and meds

15 January 2016

Life of Art SitRep #310 Gliding to Quadrangles

Added my photograph Motor Paraglider on Blue Sky to stamps and cards to finish out its select collection:

Rocklawn Arts blogged New Motor Paraglider on Blue Sky photograph.

Rearranged categories in my store some.

Updated links and LOA files.

Drew out a possible pattern idea.

Created a new digital pattern, Purple Quadrangle Stripes on Grey with Monogram. I was able to apply some more sophisticated yet ultimately simpler approaches in Photoshop which made me happy. Added it to a few electronics products:

I'll be adding it to more once its folder starts displaying in my shop.

Originally, I had named it Purple Stripes and Parallelograms on Grey with Monogram. I liked the accuracy of the name, but it proved too long.

Did a bit of work on my archives: deleted 6 videos and 21 photographs.

How was your week?

10 years ago on TTaT: Tagged

14 January 2016


Usually when I buy gas, I clean my windshields. Today when I grabbed the squeegee, the wiper fluid was full of ice. Yeah, think I'll skip it.

10 years ago on TTaT: Onslaught of the 12 year olds

09 January 2016


As I walked past an array of televisions in BJ's, a beautiful 55" TV literally had my name on it.

I stared at it for a moment in confusion until the displayed text switched to Spanish. Ah, it had been showing French before, touting its "clear view."

9 years ago on TTaT: I want one (Not that badly apparently because I still don't have one. ;)

08 January 2016

Life of Art SitRep #309 Motor Paragliding

Huzzah! It's a week without a major holiday on my regular post day. I was all set to write about burn out this week, but I turned a corner today and took a stab at editing my first photograph in Lightroom (which I finished in Photoshop) and made a postcard of it, Motor Paraglider on Blue Sky:

I also shot 42 photographs and 11 videos. Getting back to creating things has been good. I suppose the burn out I'd been thinking of has more to do with the managerial aspects of my shop.

For example, I tried making sense of Google Analytics but ended up looking at Statcounter which has far fewer bells and whistles but is also straightforward. I suppose I will need to read more about GA at some point though. Know any good resources for Google Analytics? (Yes, I suppose I can Google it.)

Made end of month/year backups. Have you backed up lately?

Did a bit of archival work on my photographs.

Made some 2016 copyright presets for Lightroom and actions for Photoshop.

Discovered some metadata quirks of Lightroom that I need to investigate further.

Read my first book of the year, "Adobe Photoshop Lightroom CC/6 Quick Start Guide: Updated for the new import dialog" by Victoria Bampton. It's a free e-book you can get if you sign up for her mailing list at her site Lightroom Queen. She also has extensive keyboard shortcuts for Lightroom in the Resources which don't require any sign up.

Updated copyright notices here and on my Rocklawn Arts blog.

Have you updated your blog's copyright notice for 2016 or verified that any auto-updater you may have worked?

I hope your 2016 is getting off to a great start!

10 years ago on TTaT: The Doctor is In

07 January 2016

Klutzy Coordination

The ribs were quite saucy, so I was eating them with a knife and fork. In a moment of klutziness, I dropped my knife, it hit the plate and bounced over the edge of the table.

The same hand that dropped the knife shot down and caught it before it hit the floor and spattered the rug with barbecue sauce. I looked down in surprise at the knife in my hand before bringing it back up to the table and resting it on the edge of my plate.

That's when Dad said, "You're supposed to just let knives fall."

10 years ago on TTaT: Made infiltrates my dreams

02 January 2016

Life of Art 2015: the year in review

Happy New Year! I hope your 2016 is full of laughter, adventure, and excellent company.

For the past 308 Fridays, I've been tracking my efforts to create a life of art for myself. Here's a look at what I accomplished in 2015.

I created 16 new patterns for my shop Rocklawn Arts:
Royal Blue and White Checkered PatternHand-Painted Black Curvy Pattern on WhiteWhite Scrolling Curves on BlackBlack and White Geometric Equal Sign Pattern

White on Black Geometric Equal Sign PatternBlack Stripes And Chevrons With Monogram On WhiteBlack Equal Sign Geometric Pattern on WhiteWhite Equal Sign Geometric Pattern on Black

White Stripes And Chevrons On Black With MonogramWhite Stripes and Chevrons on Red with MonogramRed Stripes and Chevrons with Monogram on WhiteBlack Quadrilateral Stripes on White with Monogram

Mint Green Polka Dots on Maroon Christmas PatternTextured Maroon Polka Dots on Mint GreenSky Blue Polka Dots on NavyNavy Polka Dots on Light Blue

A welcome new addition to Zazzle this past year were Collections. They allow me to curate groups of related products together. For example:

I created 19. See All of my Collections together and click on any you want to see more of.

I added 2703 products to my shop Rocklawn Arts, and

10 new product types:

Table Runners


Water Bottles

Wine Totes

Samsung Galaxy S6 Cases

Accent Pillows

•iPhone 6 Battery Cases (alas, no direct link to them all available but they are intermingled with the iPhone 6 Cases. Most if not all of these are also iPhone 6S compatible.)

Magnetic Invitation 2016 Calendars

iPad Air 2/iPad Air Folio Cases. There are many more on the first couple of pages of the iPad Cases when sorted for "Newest."


Though I have been focused on adding more and more products to my shop over the past years, I actually culled a tremendous amount in 2015 in an effort to streamline my shop and make it more attractive to search engines. It's still too early to tell how it's going, and I still have a lot of work to do updating descriptions, tags, and the like. In the meantime, it's a process I consider worth doing to create a better experience for potential customers, making it easier for people to find what they want.

The more fun life of art experiences in 2015 were the numerous exhibits, museums, gardens, and houses I toured. Tallying them up, I think it only amounts to 10 days spread through the year, but they were soul lifting days. I need to make time for more of them in future. Visiting Frederic Edwin Church's house, Olana, was a definite highlight as was an exhibit of Van Gogh.

As usual, I watched some Creative Live workshops though mainly in the first half of the year.

I imported most of my photographs into Lightroom and look forward to sharing more of them as I get the hang of the program and develop a workflow.

After all, I created over 3000 photographs and 56 videos in 2015.

How was your year? What would you like to do more of in 2016?

8 years ago on TTaT: No more hibernating

01 January 2016

Life of Art SitRep #308 New Year's Edition

Since I typically post my weekly updates on Friday at 12:01 AM, it seems apt to wish you all a Happy New Year!

I'll post a year end round up of 2015 in a few days, but for now let's take a quick look at the past week.

Shot 21 photographs and 1 video.

Edited my first video in Photoshop.

Watched “The Ultimate Guide to Workflow in Lightroom and Photoshop” by Aaron Nace on Phlearn.

Imported 2010-2015 photographs/videos/scans into Lightroom.

Updated descriptions and tags for Lavender and White Meander items.

Rearranged some folders and made some other back end adjustments to my store, Rocklawn Arts.

Prepped online sales file for the new year.

I hope you're all having a lovely, fun evening!

10 years ago on TTaT: Wring in the new year