ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
... went well yesterday.  My parents took us to an outlet mall to shop for us.  I managed to find an armload of jogging suit style pants with pockets, sadly no matching tops but it's easier these days to buy separates so I just look for printed sweatshirts in compatible colors.  I'm also charmed by a flannel top with stripes of embroidery; sounds garish, but it's lovely.

The real find, however, was something I would never have thought to go looking for.  I found a t-shirt that looks like the cover of the Kaverncaptain's Logbook from Kaverns & Krakens in Terramagne.  It has a kraken attacking a pirate ship.  :D

My partner Doug found a lot of goodies too.  So part of today has been sorting and washing all the new clothes.


Dec. 19th, 2014 10:53 pm
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Use this onscreen program to create beautiful designs.  It's nice for stress relief when you just need to look at something pretty.
ysabetwordsmith: (gift)
 [personal profile] thebonesofferalletters is holding a gift-giving prompt session where you can leave a prompt and get fic or art as a present.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
For you alt-history mavens, here are 20 maps that never happened.  Feel free to use any of those as prompts in a suitable prompt call.  The high-speed rail looks a bit like an early, truncated version of the robust mass-transit system that Terramagne-America enjoys.
ysabetwordsmith: (gold star)
This jigsaw puzzle has 1000 pieces, each of them a different color.  That's all.  No picture, just the color scale.  It's gorgeous, and a perfect gift for puzzle fans or artists.  The site has a video of people assembling the puzzle.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
[personal profile] haikujaguar has written a couple of posts on artistic business, "The Serpent's Whisper" and "I Am an Indie Midlister (and That's Okay)." These look at some ups and downs of alternative publishing and personal goals.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Here's an article about music and crowdfunding.  There's a very difficult balance between creativity and survival.  Too much idealism and you starve.  Too much commercialism and you produce dreck.  So too are there two poles of audience interaction: too low a price tag and the artist can't afford to keep working, too high a price tag and the audience either can't afford to buy or won't because they feel it's a ripoff.

Culture is an exchange.  In order to continue, a society must meet the survival and social needs of its citizens.  They need ways of supporting themselves, interacting, and expressing ideas.  What people value tends to continue.  What they do not value will be hidden or lost.  So if you don't support art, then you wind up with very little art, of poorer quality.  If you don't make sure people have enough to live on, then not only do they suffer, but they can't afford to buy stuff and your economy tanks.  Not everything has to be a cash exchange, that's a relatively recent phenomenon historically speaking.  But there must be an exchange of value and people must get their needs met.

This is a time of great challenge and great potential.  A lot of people are getting into creative work because that's all they CAN do -- they aren't permitted a day job by the people who control the businesses.  They still need to survive, so they scrabble for what they can do that DOESN'T require someone else's permission to have a job.  That's often art, music, writing, things that are less controlled than businesses you need an expensive license even to attempt.   There are business models now that help connect creators directly to the audience in ways that cut out middlemen and route more money to the people making stuff.  But the audience can be a stingy bastard sometimes.  That's especially true if people don't have enough to live on, or if they've had their pockets picked so much they FEEL like that don't have enough even after they've managed to scrape up more.  The pervasive sense of threat, that failure and starvation are just a day's bad luck and a few weeks of unemployment away, erodes the cohesion of society as a whole.

What can you do?  Think mindfully about what it costs you to make things and how much your talent is worth.  Think mindfully about how much other people's work is worth to you, and whether you can afford that.  If money is tight, which it often is when a few people are hogging so damn much of it, then look for alternatives.  You might not have cash to pay for what you want, but you may have something the other person wants that you could trade.  Money is only valuable when there's enough to get the job done.  If there isn't, it's useless as a medium of exchange.  But you always have your skills.  You have resources.  Other people have different ones.  So trade.

And value each other's hard work, because somebody has to, and it's painfully clear that the people at the top of the heap care fuckall about you, art, or the sustainability of society.

ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 Lovely covers for Warlord and Orcs for Hire.
ysabetwordsmith: (gift)
The Winterfaire spreads out as far as the eye can see. Some booths show streamers of red and green, while others sport blue and silver. All of them offer treasure after shining treasure. Music fills the air with lyrics of Christmas, Hannukah, Kwanzaa, Solstice, and Yule. From the Wordsmith's Forge comes the bright chiming of words being hammered into literature. Delicious scents of hot chocolate, spiced cider, peppermint, baking cookies, and gingerbread tantalize the appetite. Smiling, laughing shoppers amble from booth to booth with lists in hand. Vendors grin back, calling out, "Come try, come buy...!"

I know a lot of artists, writers, musicians, crafters, and other talented folks who make some of their living from their creative endeavors. I don't always have the money to support them as much as I'd like, but what I can do is set up a virtual faire where vendors can offer their wares to an audience that likes crafts, literature, and small businesses. For those of you doing your holiday shopping, here's an opportunity to buy something made with love, something unusual or unique, in a way that helps make it possible for creative people to go on creating wonders. And there will be no traffic jams, stampedes, or gunfights at the Winterfaire! Enjoy the seasonal offerings on Dreamwidth or on LiveJournal.

Read more... )
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 Just in case you thought only modern art needed a secret decoder ring, check out this Anglo-Saxon stuff.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
The November Crowdfunding Creative Jam is now open on Dreamwidth and on LiveJournal.  Our theme is "salvaging and repairing people or ideas."  Come give us prompts, or claim prompts to inspire your own work! 

From My Prompts:

"Homesick Day" -- [personal profile] dialecticdreamer offers a bittersweet story about emotional first aid for homesickness, set in Onion City of Terramagne.

"Road Repair" -- [personal profile] dialecticdreamer has written about stopping street harassment.  This is another Onion City story, featuring the return of her construction workers Rudy and Gideon, plus Amada Durante from my storyline about Danso's family.

"Learning to Correct Yourself" -- [personal profile] dialecticdreamer presents an adorable fluff story about a little boy trying to figure out the complex etiquette of asking adults about their personal relationships.  It's another Polychrome Heroics story, set out on the west coast this time, featuring her Finn family.

"A Good Mistake" -- [personal profile] dialecticdreamer made another piece related to the Finns, this time told from the perspective of family friends Jules and Mariset as they try to untangle an ugly bit of professional chicanery.

"Chaotic, Not Evil" -- [personal profile] dialecticdreamer wrote this oddly charming piece about an assassin rescuing a superkid.  (Warning for child exploitation.)

"White Cats Are Evil" -- [personal profile] dialecticdreamer has written a crossover between Polychrome Heroics and Schrodinger's Heroes which directly follows "Chaotic, Not Evil."  This story has been continued, so look for the later installments in the thread on the Creative Jam post and in her DW journal.

What I Have Written:

"Mending Spirals" -- this session's freebie, about genetic ethics in Nine for the Nebula's Heart.

"In Dublin's Fair City" -- 224 lines, $112 (Polychrome Heroics)
Your chaotic prompt inspired the free-verse poem "In Dublin's Fair City." Instead of a Scottish referendum, Terramagne had an Irish one, and Backdraft got dragged into providing fire suppression service for the occasion.  
"My Greatest Source of Achievement" -- 168 lines, $84 (Polychrome Heroics)
From this I got the free-verse poem "My Greatest Source of Achievement." Danso deals with an unsupportive teacher, and Hannah suggests exploring church groups. 

"Wolf-Wind" -- 86 lines, $43 (Hart's Farm)
For an extended family, I wrote the free-verse poem "Wolf-Wind." Everyone in Hart's Farm pitches in to take care of the children -- even when there is an unexpected arrival. 

"Clipped" -- 387 lines, $193.50 (Polychrome Heroics)
This inspired the free-verse poem "Clipped."  When a runaway just turned 18 comes to SPOON for refuge, Groundhog struggles to deal with the challenges.  Then Granny Whammy drags Danso into the situation, hoping that he can help.

"Stretched" -- 232 lines, $116 (Polychrome Heroics)
"Stretched" is a free-verse poem that picks up after "Clipped." It shows what happens when Danso gets home after the fiasco at SPOON. Heavy duty hurt/comfort.
(Available for publication after "Clipped"  has been sponsored and posted.)

"Settled" -- 320 lines, $160 (Polychrome Heroics)
The third in this set is the free-verse poem "Settled." It picks up the morning after "Stretched" and shows how Danso feels in the aftermath, along with what Hannah and other folks have been doing to protect him. 
(Available for publication after "Clipped" and "Stretched"  have been sponsored and posted.)

See Also:

"Finding the God in the Gate" -- a Blueshift Troupers story by [personal profile] zeeth_kyrah  inspired by conversation between myself and [personal profile] dialecticdreamer.  A traveler wants to meet God by passing through a jumpgate.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
Someone went through and added more realistic shapes to Disney princesses.

Ariel, Jasmine, and Pocahontas definitely look better.

But.  Look at Belle and Aurora.  They are wearing corset dresses.  Those are designed to create exactly the shape originally drawn.  It's not natural but it is accurate.  You just have to imagine them breathing up and down instead of in and out.  Trust me, you can make an hourglass out of any figure with a corset, no matter how many hours your pour into it.  Elsa's dress is filmier but has that springy control-top look that some modern dresses use to make people look trimmer in a sheath.

You want to give girls a positive body image?  Put a princess in a houpplande.  They make average-to-large size bodies look awesome, and are period.

This kind of argument is why I use real bodies as character inspiration.  It's a lot easier to mix body types that way, and when I have artists, I can just say, "Here is a reference image."  I'm still working my way through that set of Olympic athletes.
ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)
 Animal cakes -- I think the sea turtle is my favorite.


ysabetwordsmith: Cartoon of me in Wordsmith persona (Default)

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