Tag Archives: art

Regarding Social Media

Typewriter

I like Twitter. There I said it, not that I’m getting paid (or am opposed to getting paid, hey). Since I’ve always had my finger on the pulse, more or less, I had a Twitter account straightaway, along with my Usenutters, where we tweeped what we ate for lunch and such. That was when you got 140 chars, no pics, no fancies. Boring! We quickly moved on to blogging and I eventually closed that account.

Years passed and Twitter seemed to turn into a wasteland of pr0n and politics, so I had no interest in it. But then one of my friends said there were poetry corners with lots of cool poets hanging out and doing flash stuffs, so I poked my head in again. And it was true ~ not just poetry, but prompts and wordgames and art and kitties and otters and all sorts of neato things. I made a new account.

Then I learned you were supposed to promote your writing via Twitter, so I created additional accounts for my ‘nyms, each dedicated to ginning up interest in my books, and x-tweeted with the other ‘nyms… ugh, exhausting. Not to mention, it didn’t help anything. My tweets immediately sank into the tweepy abyss, never to be seen again. Didn’t help if I “hearted” and retweeted other writers’ promos ~ everyone does that. Writing is hugely incestuous and it’s hard to break out of that cycle. Writers who achieve any meaningful success immediately lose their motivation to help lesser writers, and why not? They need to focus on writing their next successful book or else they’ll die. And they’ll probably die anyway. That’s just how it is. Note how successful people have zillions of followers but only follow a few, and this is true across all social media.

Anyway, this isn’t a whine about how I’m not going to write any more so there wah wah. I’ll always write because I’m a writer. But I’ll still bitch about various things, since I’m a bitch. Hehe. I came here to say that I like Twitter and I love blogging, which I plan to do more of, in lieu of so much st00pid, pointless Facebooking. Gah. What a waste of time and energy. Reading Twitter poetry is inspiring; writing on FB gets me warmed up to write in general. FB should be an afterthought, not something I reflexively look at before anything else.

I see so many friends complain about FB, on FB itself, which couldn’t care less, and I have to say… blogs are free. Get over here on WordPress (who isn’t paying me, but again I’m not opposed), get a blog, and choose your own design. It’s so nice to write a whole essay, post pics, control comments, know who visits, easily search for past stuff, etc. I highly recommend it. And if you don’t feel like writing? You can post a silly meme or Hallmark platitude on your blog same as anywhere else.

Think about it. Why gripe about FB and do nothing when there’s a solution right here?

Oh, Instagram. It’s become irritating as well, now that they’ve screwed it up and made it non-chronological so the paid accounts get priority. I haven’t been checking in as much and may unfollow everyone but my actual friends. That’s probably a good idea. I’ve also simply lost interest in photos somewhat. There are so many and okay gorgeous flowers adorable kitties oh looook OTTER and awww a baby and a puppy ooh hot fireman and some cupcakes yummm now more kitties okay… can I be done NO THERE ARE 72 million moar you have not seen omg.

Just get a blog, people, FFS. It’s not that hard.

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Chihuly on Catalina

Here are a few of the extraordinarily beautiful Chihuly pieces we saw yesterday at the Catalina Island Museum, where they are hosting an exhibit for a few more weeks. There was also an interesting short film on the history of Catalina and a brief bio of artist Dale Chihuly too.

(Made a collage in Google photos ~ fun!)

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Seattle 2012

I survived my fear of heights to visit the Space Needle with my daughter in 2012. That was pretty awesome.

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But the best part of the day was our visit to Chihuly’s glass garden nearby. I had never seen his work in person before. Incredible.

~*~

The Daily Prompt: Survive

Blurry

blurry

This is one of my early cell phone camera photos, taken with my Moto. I loved that phone because it was so easy to deal with. It had internet access, but I couldn’t do “too much” internetting on it, or it would get overwhelmed and shut down. That was fine though. There was certainly enough time to stalk people and rabbit-hole down links from my laptop at home; I didn’t need to be doing that when I was out and about. But I can now with my Samsung Galaxy 5. Great.

The G5 also takes much better photos. Well, sort of. If I get everything right, then I end up with a perfect photo. But since I don’t understand 90% of the feechurs, and can’t be bothered trying to figure them out because there are people to stalk, links to follow into rabbit holes, books to read, pomes to write, socks to alphabetize, etc., I end up clicking away stupidly and getting pretty much the same variable quality photos as before on the Moto. Lots of blurry kitty faces half-turned away, basically.

Don’t get me wrong; I’m much happier with the Samsung now and wouldn’t go back. Once you have more technology you don’t want to settle for less. I have multiple ways to get in touch with my kids, for one thing. Actually, that’s the main thing.

But this pic is still a fave. I like the colors and the composition; it reminds me of the hectic pace here in SoCal. Most of us are not “laid-back” as people elsewhere think we are, lazing around on beaches, not working, chilled out. We are forever rushing somewhere, usually in our cars, and totes stressed. I used this pic as the cover photo for Gatsby’s Facebook page. Because of course I have a page for my cat. ^..^

~*~

The Daily Prompt: Blur

Crafty

crafty

 

I’m trying to remember the first handmade thing I created, in response to today’s “craft” prompt (which could be interpreted as boat or beer, but I’m not going in those directions). It was probably one of those ridiculous summer camp pencil holders made out of a frozen OJ can with glued-on popsicle sticks and covered with paint and glitter. Did anyone ever use these things, or just dump them right in the trash? This would have been when I was 6 or 7 years old, when we lived in Sleepy Hollow,  NY. We were there two years and both my parents worked full-time. One summer I went to camp with mean girls and the other I stayed with a grumpy old lady and her idiot grandsons. Both were horrible experiences. But I digress.

When we moved to Longuyland my new friends were into beads, so I made a ton of beady necklaces and bracelets. My mom saved some of them and possibly one of my daughters kept a few for sentimental value. This would have been when I was 8-9.

When we moved to New Jersey my mom made a giant house for my Barbies out of moving boxes and wallpapered it to match my room. We shopped for accessories to make rooms for the dolls, and she taught me how to knit and crochet so I could make teensy blankets and rugs for them. Later I turned it into a harem, but that’s beside the point. Well, there’s like one Ken for every 20 Barbies ~ Mattel must have foreseen this. Anyway, creating little dollhouse items was my crafty obsession around age 10.

In Jersey, my mom got very into DIY and sewing, so I tagged along and ended up learning some too. I embroidered a denim shirt for home ec and put together an outfit to model at the end of the semester (that I secretly took home at night for my mom to fix up on her sewing machine). I enjoyed that a lot and continued doing needlework after the class ended, buying kits and learning new stitches, making pillows and pictures. Mom and I made candles for a while too.

I stuck with the sewing type crafts for many years. When my girls were little I painted tee shirts. That was a lot of fun and the shirts came out great… I was thinking of starting a biz, until I overdid it and could no longer move my thumb without excruciating pain. Nixed my cake decorating career also. I switched to creating fancy photo scrapbooks, which became my obsession for the next several years. All along I still did the needlework, but as I aged I found I had less patience for it and nowadays have no interest in the detailed “art” type pictures, though I still would like to learn to knit and crochet (I’ve forgotten how). I know there are a million vids ~ maybe I’m not motivated enough yet.

One of the main problem with crafts is that they’re expensive. I priced out how much it would cost to knit a poncho (my ultimate goal)… and depending on the style it might be about 3x more than just buying one! I may do it anyway. And going down the bead path again (occasionally tempting)… yikes! I spent a ton of money back in my scrapbook days… and my tee shirt biz would no doubt have been a tax write-off. 🙂

Yesterday I wanted to go to an antique crafty show near my apt, but there was nowhere to park and I was trapped in the lot for few minutes, which was super stressful. ACK DRIVING ISSUES AGAIN. Anyway, I was happy to escape with my life and car intact. Will try again another time, another place.

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The Daily Prompt: Craft

Image

Wordless Wednesday

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Silverado Country Fair

Rob and I went to a fair yesterday in Silverado Canyon, about 25 miles inland. It was so hot out! My car temp was 106F when we headed back. Despite that, the fair was really fun. We saw a bunch of cool art, met some of the artists, and did a craft ourselves. I was really pleased to find some dangly kitty earrings made of real silver, just like some I lost years ago, for only $10. I polished them at home and they look adorable.

Here are some fair pix…

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Donkey looks sad all cooped up. There were cute goats too and their owner said they’d been “debutted,” which made me feel too bad to take their pic.

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Rob is weaving by crisscrossing various blue yarn strands in a grooved cardboard disc. I did one too in browns and called the result a monkey’s tail.

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We decide to take a cookie break…

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Zomg! There’s a cookie in my cookie! It’s like a turducken… or would be if there was a PB cup on top of the Oreo. (Bakers, take note.)

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Rob won a yellow monkey in the beanbag toss! Lookit his long fluffy tail! The monkey’s, not Rob’s.

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Rob gave the monkey to me (aww, thanks!) and we decided to name it Donovan ~ Donny for short. Can you figure out why?

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I wuvs him. 🙂

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I bought a toy for Gatsby, and as you can see… he’s utterly thrilled.

After the fair, Rob and I went to see Mission Impossible ~ Rogue Nation at the $3 theater to get some A/C. Fun movie! And the freezing cold Coke Icee hit the spot.

What a great day. I love fairs.

The Yellow Wallpaper Redux

Surely you remember the famous Charlotte Perkins Gilman short story The Yellow Wallpaper? Well…

A while ago, I used bookcases to create a divider in my studio apartment to make it feel more like a living room and a bedroom rather than one great room. Since the backs of the bookcases were plain and boring, I covered them in aminal print paper. They came out pretty cool.

Lately I’ve noticed that the paper is getting scratched and shredded. Is something trying to get out from behind there? Is someone trying to help? Could there be a psycho creature clawing at the paper in fits of madness? Possibly it’s only my wild imaginings.

Wallpaper

Mystery.

The Art Forger

I loved The Art Forger by Barbara A. Shapiro. Surprised the hell out of me, it did.

1. It’s in first person, present tense. Eww. But it works well.

2. There are constant flips to a backstory from 3 years ago. Yucky. But it works to build suspense and character.

3. There’s a series of old letters from 100 years ago. OMG noooo! But they are oddly… interesting.

4. A whole bunch of technical stuffs is plastered in about painting technique. Weirdly fascinating. Plus how can I not adore the word “craquelure?”

5. The heroine’s attraction to a certain dude annoys me, but I’m cheering for her anyway. Go figure.

None of the characters are very likeable, in that they haz glaring ethical flaws, but yet I can totally sympathize with the heroine regardless. Eh, probably because of. 🙂

Thing is, I never would have found this book, much less bought and enjoyed it, if it wasn’t for the Kindle Unlimited program. Sure, my first impulse is to grab up some romance novels for the next bout of reading, but sometimes I get /whispers/ a little bored of them. So, I branch out and look at the mysteries and other fiction. Snatched up a rando book of poetry the otter day. Can haz anything I want in the pile for my $10 per month. No like? Throw it back after a few pages. Awesomeness.

Today I began some crazy thing (first person again!) about a crazy spoiled rich girl whose daddy cuts her off when she gets pregnant. It sounds awful, except it’s written in Britspeak, which makes me all squee!

Happy April!

Peeps

Chasing Amish

In my continuing mission to read a variety of romance subgenres (cowboys and dragons done and dusted), I have now turned to the Amish. Apparently this is quite a big fu… fudgy deal. Justine McDaniel gives a nice overview of the bonnet ripper phenom, which is what inspired me to check it out myself.

The other day, I downloaded four Amish romances for my Kindle (free in Kindle Unlimited, natch ~ you didn’t think I would actually pay for these, right?) and got started.

First book: Fruitful Love by Michelle Eastwood. This is possibly the worst thing I’ve ever read. There was absolutely no plot, no conflict, nothing interesting in any way, shape, or form happening in this story. The characters were boring and had zero personality, no quirks, no flaws, no shiny spots, nothing. Girl meets boy, girl gets boy, the end. WTF? Saving grace: it was super-short.

Second book: An Amish Choice by Diana Morgan. OK, here we have a real story. I liked many things about this book. The protags were surprisingly real and flawed. They were extremely relatable and could have been any religion. The hero is a good man, but speaks impulsively and hurts people’s feelings. This is a problem for him throughout. The heroine is also a good person, but sometimes bitchy and irrational. Both of them are confused and have a hard time figuring out what they really want. Just like it is, you know?

Problems with AAC include POV shifting, typos, and annoying rando paragraph indents. Writers! Use block formatting for Kindle! Indenting looks like crap, and sometimes the uploading process double indents, or otherwise screws things up. Yucky. (I may not have fixed all mine yet, so shhhh.) But these could be (and are) issues with any books and have nothing do do with Amishness.

So, I had one good experience and one bad… and I bailed on the last two. I kinda get the idea now: a lot of baking, a lot of buggying, and a smattering of German.

Danke.

Sexy Amish