Aug. 4th, 2011

Thursday at the Tea House

So I'm sitting at this Tea House out in the city, and the tea is awful (it's a bubble tea place - I had no idea you couldn't get regular tea here), but the company is nice. Katy and I are supposed to be writing. Well, you can see how well that's working out for me so far.

Actually, I have made some progress on the story. I know now that there's a dark secret between the Magician and the Envoy, and that the Handmaid knows much more than she lets on. The Captain is caught up in repairs and investigations of sabotage, made worse by the presence of Imperially well-connected civilian passengers. It seems like there's something there to work with. I just haven't figured out what the real story is yet.

I have big plans for art projects, as usual, but this time I may have more opportunity to get them done. I'm looking for ideas of Awesome Ladies of Science to make a series. I really want to do something with Astrid Farnsworth, and with Dana Scully, and Ellie from Contact, and maybe Madame Curie while I'm at it. Other ideas? I'm willing to stretch to some fandoms I am not familiar with, within reason and with sufficient science awesomeness (and preferably a character with more than token screen time). (And I do mean Science, not just general Action Hero Amazingness. That will be a different series. And I am going to be choosy with lady doctors - not all of them will pass my bar of Science Awesomeness, ok?)

(Should I include my list so far?)

In other fandom news, my love for Dr. Stephen Maturin continues strong through HMS Surprise, during which he and Jack have the MOST ENTERTAINING CONVERSATION:

Stephen said, 'Have you ever contemplated upon sex, my dear?'
'Never,' said Jack. 'Sex has never entered my mind, at any time.'


I laughed out loud when I read that line. Just in general, Stephen is awesome. I did miss that in the film, that in order to go with the naval battle adventure, they had to cut so much of Stephen's awesomeness. I like Jack, too, and feel he was better cast in the film, but they're both a bit too fit and healthy, if you ask me.

Katy and I have been thinking we should have a Hot Regency Guys movie marathon, during which we would screen portions of Sharpe, Hornblower, Master and Commander, Pride and Prejudice (Colin Firth and Matthew Macfayden versions), and maybe Sense and Sensibility. I'm sure we could find some locals who could get behind such an event.

I've also been re-inspired to work on my Ancient Afghan Princess painting, which had been languishing in the WIP folder for a while. I credit the inspiration to a gorgeous photo shoot with Freema Agyeman that scrolled across my tumblr a few days ago. Thank you, mysterious Doctor Who reblogger! (The initial inspiration was the "Afghan Gold" exhibition of artifacts at the MFAH.)

Hopefully I'll be able to do some of that digitally. I'm hampered in my digital work by the loaner tablet I'm using. Since I don't have the correct drivers, it's a bit frustrating, but it works well enough to finish my in-progress stuff. I just don't think I could really sketch with it at all. My beloved Intuos4 is somewhere in Washington state, hopefully in a queue to be repaired. I miss you, baby!

Until then, I'm thinking I may try some work with colored pencil and watercolor again, plus I'm having a lot of fun experimenting with Stewart Gill fabric paint on muslin. (Wash fabric thoroughly before painting, though - uneven sizing makes for an interesting application experience.)

Ok, I've procrastinated enough for tonight. I should be writing.

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/491617.html. comments posted to original post.

Mar. 5th, 2011

reviews, phones, card of the day

So in the course of Googling myself (as one does, regularly), I found a 2/5 star review of a flash fiction story of mine that was published in 2005 or 2006 (I don't remember), and the entire text of the review is four words long. Very, very strange.

Today Nefertem the Magical Purple Smartphone almost gave me heart failure when he abruptly stopped working. I went to a Sprint Store but they wouldn't help me because while he is a Sprint branded phone, I don't actually have a Sprint account. Doh! I was able to call on one of their phones to get tech support from Credo, and now Nefertem is back in working order. Thank goodness. I was worried for a moment there!

Today the card I pulled was the Eight of Earth in the Gaian Tarot.
Eight of Earth, Gaian Tarot )
This card is about lessons, so I've had a few lately. Today, my lesson about how to manually reboot my phone. Also a lesson about how things on the 'net have a way of being resurrected even after several years of downtime. Fiction never dies! Bad fiction really never dies!
That flash fiction piece was my second piece of paid prose. Fun.
Today I also got a lesson from the universe in being a nice customer despite frustration. Frustration and anger live in very particular parts of my body, too, and it's always a sign to me that I need to slow down and breathe and get things under control when the emotions come out physically.
This card also makes me want to go to a fire circle. I love the drumming.
Delicious lessons for today: how to reheat rice in the rice cooker. (It turned out well!) And adding mushrooms to my sauteed kale really worked! Nom nom nom.
Other lesson: Bar Code Viewer on phone works, but no easy way to link it up to LibraryThing. Oh, well. Manual entry it is.
And lessons in general: The Wild Hunt has a couple of nice link round-ups for the recent gender discrimination/inclusiveness controversy that has rocked the public pagan sphere lately. Looks like some really exceptional conversations are starting.

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/482729.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Feb. 19th, 2011

any advice on Android ebook readers?

Any Android users out there have advice on ebook readers? Which ones do you like, which ones get good reviews, which ones have flexibility and decent book selections?

Thanks!
(And if anybody wants to share other useful or entertaining free apps, feel free.)

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/479412.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Feb. 17th, 2011

Food, politics, and creativity

Today's card: Two of Water (again), Gaian Tarot
Two of Water, Gaian Tarot )
This again? Hm. Well, it's certainly apt as usual, because there's a lot of really exciting stuff happening, and I'm feeling lots of creative vibes.
New collaborations are in the works, plus progress is being made on writing and art that had been sidelined. Yay!
I have new connections of all kinds through Nefertem the magical purple smartphone, too. Never underestimate the power of FourSquare, I guess. Except I can't get it to post to Twitter (probably a good thing, really).

I had something really important to post about but I got distracted because, you know, work and stuff. Now I don't remember what it was. Possibly something political, but just thinking of all the petitions and congressional faxes and whatever else I've been sending is depressing. Democracy Now! every morning is depressing. Politicians' being assholes is depressing. Rape culture is infuriating, and the political attacks on womens' health are part of it! Rar! My Facebook overfloweth. And my state reps are screwing us over, too. Fun times, indeed.

I got spoiled for Fringe in a pagan blog, of all places. Oops. But I'm still totally engaged and watching Season 2.

I picked up some kale at the Farmers' Market this week and sauteed it with olive oil and garlic powder and it was AMAZING! Good grief. I want it, like, all the time, now. Bring me all the kale and garlic in the land!

Also on the subject of food, the H-town Streats lunch truck continues to be awesome, and Kim and I are planning to go to Inversion on other days, too, to hit the other two local trucks. Nom nom nom. Today for lunch we had beef sliders with bacon jam, parmesan truffle oil fries, and deep-fried chocolate coconut brownies with dulce de leche sauce. *swoon*

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/478837.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Feb. 13th, 2011

Home with new toy

So, I made it home from San Antonio after a very fun conference and a brief stop at the Alamo and at El Mercado to have lunch at Mi Tierra restaurant. (Well worth the hype, IMO, and also a family tradition.)

Here is the required photo op:
In front of the Alamo
I think I will go get my hair cut today. Egads.

Also resident at the Alamo, which I had forgotten or perhaps never seen, beautiful giant koi fish:
Giant koi at the Alamo. Gorgeous!

Yesterday I visited the ancestral homestead to pick up my new smartphone (purple, already be-stickered), so expect me to become a head-down drone during all important interactions for a while now. :P He really is very cool, and I am very happy with him so far. (I think, as he is purple and has an Egyptian lotus sticker on his back, I will call him after the god of the lotus, Nefertem.)

I also got to have dinner with Donna and Jon and the little ones, who are very entertaining. (And were forgiving of my smartphone obsession.) We watched Star Wars, Episode I, which is Lando's current favorite, and it was actually not terrible to watch. Lando is a very enthusiastic Padawan learner, with his own lightsaber and everything. Watching with kids really makes you view these films in different ways.
As long as I didn't listen to any of the dialogue, it was great, and Liam Neeson was awesome! Donna and I had a whole conversation about the AU where Qui Gon lives and Obi-Wan doesn't fuck everything up with Anakin. It was awesome!

Today's card: Temperance from the Gaian Tarot.
Key 14: Temperance, Gaian Tarot )
In her description of this card, Joanna mentions specifically that it is a card beloved by and created for artists. It is a card of mixing and making, of creative solutions to problems and cooperation among disparate elements. I'd like to think that Temperance creates great energies in my life all the time, both spiritually and socially. I hope also that she watches over my creativity to keep me from becoming too predictable, or stuck in any ruts.

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/478094.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Oct. 13th, 2010

Prague Astronomical Clock Anniversary Video

600 Years and an Incredible Projection Show. Wow.



This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/459845.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Aug. 15th, 2010

back to work, to art, to home

I got my photos from Ithaca up on Flickr:
At the Farmer's Market

Here's the link to the whole set.

Admittedly, bunches and bunches are of landscape, and lots are of carousel horses.  If I had a better camera or more skill with the one I own, I'd have more confidence in them.  As it is, they are fun little photos.  And then there are plenty of Milo.  w00t!

The last couple of days after I got back to Houston have been full of work and unpacking and sorting and cleaning.  And grocery shopping, wow.  Lots of grocery shopping.

I finally loaded up all of my recycling to take to the drop-off center, and lo, somebody was trying to move in to the apartment complex and was having trouble getting their trailer into the lot.  The truck blocked the gate for a bit, so I came back up here to give them enough time to figure it all out. Then I did the drop, and now I am ready to start clearing some of the paper debris that must be shredded.

Yesterday I spent most of my time on a combination of computer stuff. I plugged the machine into the TV, which is awesome, but I can't figure out how to adjust the screen position. They desktop is just about half an inch to the right, so there's a strip of black on the left side and the images cut off on the right. Even with that, it's still a great screen to watch TV (I've been mainlining Sanctuary now, and it is cracktastic) and work on art at the same time.  It's also nice for watching Netflix on the main screen while I cook or work on ApolloCon stuff with the laptop.

In art news, I'm testing out the flex nib on my Intuos4 pen and it's pretty interesting. I'm not sure that I really have enough mastery of the tablet's abilities to grasp all the nuances, but it does feel a bit different from the regular pen nib.  I may try the stroke and felt nibs later, too.  I've been to pre-occupied with fandom for the last few weeks to do another CHOW on ConceptArt.org, but I click through the forum regularly anyhow.

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/450977.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Jun. 24th, 2010

happy web news

The art is not down!  Yay!
Everything else is, but I managed to clean out the malware without having to gut the Gallery portion of the site, so hurrah. 
Still, got to clean things out and get the domain back up and running at some point.  :)

And now I am just getting ready to load my car with all the exciting boxes and boxes and bins and boxes and... boxes...  oh, and my personal luggage... for APOLLOCON!

I managed to print everything (I hope!) and get it all into place to transport and wow, there is a LOT of gear involved.  Whee!

Hope to see all the locals there. :)

ETA: ok, I have no idea how the usernames ended up in this post - must have been some stray code from my crossposting software. Oops! Sorry, guys. ;)

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/448109.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

Jun. 23rd, 2010

site compromised - art going away

It looks like the website where I manage my art gallery has been compromised by some malware. I am thinking that I may take this time to just do a complete overhaul of the domain, since it's woefully out of date anyway. But that will have to wait because ApolloCon needs my time for a while first. I am going to end up just deleting the whole thing, I think, and it will be a dead url for a time.

The upshot of this is that all my art will go away in a little while, and any other sites that use art hosted on my site will also get errors.

Ah, the joy of the internet. Time to take a more active interest in my websites, I see.

This entry was originally posted at http://zephre.dreamwidth.org/447846.html. comment count unavailable comments posted to original post.

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