29 June 2006

I Am A Moron

Someday, maybe I'll learn to take my own writing advice. You know, the really basic "never send out your only copy of a story" advice? Yeah, well.

As many of you know, I used to write the content (and do some other stuff) for About.com's Creative Writing for Teens website (now I do the PSP site). Well, a lot of the articles are tool-based, meaning you plug them into an online form, essentially, and it gets added to the database. Well, I developed a really bad habit of composing directly into the tool. And then I stopped doing the site. Leading up to my switch to PSP, I did start a word doc and cut and pasted the text from many of my articles into it. Except I don't know where I saved the doc. And now the CW for Teens site is no more (not just my version; About decided to remove it entirely). I have never been happier that Google caches pages--I found a lot of my old stuff that way. And the really old stuff I still have on the laptop harddrive. But there are a few bits and pieces that somehow never got saved anywhere but on the About servers, and which have disappeared from Google.

Yeah, so I feel a bit stupid. I didn't even think about it until someone emailed me looking for a manuscript format article I wrote. I did find that one, but now I have no energy left to email the guy back (even with a happy stomach full of sushi). Tomorrow, I guess.

It's not even that I'll ever need the stuff again. Unless I decide to pubish a how-to-write book, which I probably won't do. It's just mine. I made it. Geh. I will recover. At least it wasn't stuff I really cared about, like my fiction. Now that I have mostly saved in multiple places (some of it exists in various versions on floppy disk, laptop harddrive, cd-rom, Mac harddrive, and one or more hardcopies in a box somewhere in BC).

As soon as I'm done cat sitting, I'll be making sure updated copies of all my fiction is in multiple formats and possibly even different places (anyone want to volunteer to curate a hardcopy or cd of one or more stories? see, I'm paranoid now).

Nik Shoots People

I rescheduled the photo shoot with Deva's mom Judy to this afternoon. I'd hoped to photograph her in her sewing room, which has wall-to-wall shelves full of fabric and other crafting goodies, but it was so cramped I couldn't have got the tripods in. So instead we shot in the living room, with Judy on the couch, surrounded by fabric samples and all her many current projects. I hope the window behind her won't be a problem (the curtains were drawn, but they were pretty thin).

Ryan (Deva's son) had offered to be assistant, so I handed him my 35mm and he took pictures of me taking pictures, pictures of his grandmother, pictures of Sam-the-cat-who-has-thumbs, etc. His friend Mark was there, too, so after I took pictures of Judy and her crafts, I took some of Judy and Ryan, and then some of Ryan and Mark playing Yu-Gi-Oh cards. It was pretty fun. I've ended up with 4 12-exposure rolls of medium-format (120) fim, and most of a roll of 36-exposure 35mm film. And I just realized I didn't save any film for the Nik-as-mad-scientist shoot Ryan is going to help me with tomorrow. So I'll have to remember to stop at the NSCAD store and buy more film. 2 rolls should be plenty; I'm doing the mad scientist ones more just for fun (unless they turn out really well, in which case I may use some for the portrait project).

Anyway, that was my day. It's been really hard to get up in the morning. Possibly I am abusing caffeine too much and it's getting back at me, like it used to. Bleah. Oh well. Tomorrow is work, then mad scientist photos, then anime and hanging out with roomates, then more sleep. Oh, and I'll probably develop whatever film I have somewhere in there, too, and then print on the weekend. We'll see.

27 June 2006


It's hot. I know I shouldn't complain. After all, it was raining all weekend, and I wished it was nice. I don't mind, really, I just wish I only had to walk places in the evening, when it's cooler. The worst part is, I keep forgetting my sunglasses, so I have to squint a lot, or else walk with my eyes closed. Anyway, I'm not really complaining about the heat, I'm just tired and sweaty from hauling lots of camera equipment from school to home and then from home back here (where I am cat sitting) -- most of the way on the bus, I am glad to say. And I will have to haul it all back to school tomorrow (not on the bus), and then sign it out again on Thursday and repeat the whole process because my portrait subject was too worn out from company and sick people (S.O.'s dad in the hospital for a triple bypass) and wouldn't let me photograph her. I wanted to take the pics anyway, because, well, sometimes people are more interesting when they're tired than when they're all dolled up and ready for portraits. But she wouldn't let me. So Thursday it is. (Not, but the way, that I am complaining about that either -- there's no phone here, so she couldn't call and tell me not to come, and anyway we had a nice visit.)

Why, I wonder, is it so hard sometimes to write about things that happened without sounding like one is complaining? Oh well.

In other news, I raided my host's dvds the night before last, and watched Das Boot because I had always heard it was really good. And it was. Quite amazing, really, both visually and in the development of character. Very long, but well worth it. I'll watch something else tonight, but I haven't decided what yet. Last evening I went for a walk around Halifax's South End and decided this is the area I'd like to live in, should I decide to stay, and should I manage to find some kind of work that lets me pay the sort of rent normal people pay. I also went along the harbour front, where plenty of other people were also walking. It was nice in the fog, though, as all the usual busy sounds were muffled and things distant were obscured. Alas, because -- I presume -- I was dressed in the usual dark clothes and walking as quietly as I usually walk (which means people don't tend to notice me right away) some poor old guy in a hat thought I was stalking him. He made some humourous comment when he noticed me, but I think he really thought I was following him, waiting for the opportune moment to steal his wallet or something.

Oh yeah, I forgot to mention, my hair is all green now. Well, actually it was all green. It's now brown with a faded green patina and some brighter green streaks, due to an uneven bleach and dye (very hard to do this to one's own hair, even with last minute emergency roommate assistance). It was all in the name of art, anyway. In my photo class there's a woman with bright red hair and one with blue hair, so with me having green hair we made up the primary colours of light: RGB. So our photo teacher thought it would be fun to photograph the three of us. Therefore I dyed my hair all green. With the heat, though, I'm seriously considering shaving off the back, skater-style, or at least cutting that part really, really short. (If you can't envision what I mean, look at Sorcha's hair in "Meddlesome Spirits" (middle panel), only my hair isn't that long anymore.)

Now I think I'll make a salad, because I'm still too warm for cooking. I have some feta cheese and lots of different veggies (in many different colours!). Hmm. Except I just remembered I haven't any salad dressing. Maybe a sandwich . . . I have some nice gluten-free cheese bread . . .

25 June 2006

Where the Hell Have I Been?

I expect one or two of you may be wondering that. Well, I've pretty much been where I've been all along -- either at home working or at school attending classes. Or, occasionally, buying art supplies so that I can do projects for said classes.

Last week was end-of-term for half-summer classes and mid-term for all-summer classes, which meant I had a final project and an exam to study for, plus a non-final project to work on. The final project was to make an edition of 17 flag books for Book Arts class (I actually made an edition of 19, so I could have a couple extras). It took longer than I thought. The flag book is a fairly simple structure, but I didn't quite realize how much longer it would take to make 19 of them. And, of course, I knew what I wanted to do and am too stubborn to simplify in order to get things done faster. So I was up pretty much all night one night, but I got it done and I think it turned out pretty good. I'll post pictures soon.

The mid-term was a slide test for Survey of 20th Century Art. I hardly studied. I always feel guilty about not studying, yet I almost never worry about not studying. I just don't stress about tests, for some reason. Anyway, I managed to cram titles and dates and artists into my brain in what little time I had, and remember enough of the lectures and discussions and readings that I think I did okay. Now I have a take-home to do for the same class, but it shouldn't take too long.

The other project was a work-in-progress for a self-portrait/portrait project for photo (that is, the project consists of both self-portraits and portraits of someone else). I wasn't as prepared as I'd wanted to be, but luckily the thing isn't actually due for another two weeks. I've since shot another roll of self-potrait stuff, which may or may not be what I was aiming for, but even if it's not, I think I can use it for a book project that popped into my head while I was out for a walk (walks and showers seem to be when I get all the best ideas, or occasionally in the middle of the night when I'm not really awake enough to manipulate a pen). I have a subject lined up for Tuesday for the portrait part, which I think should be fun to shoot. I may or may not post some of the results of this project later on, but I probably will add a few things from previous projects, as I know a few of you friends-and-family types are curious to see what I've been doing.

Right now I am cat-sitting, so I have lots of peace and quiet. Also I have a week and a half off school. I am trying to do lots of work, since my three-month review is coming up soon and I really need to get more content up. Other than that, I am reading and eating yummy, healthy food (I have been getting into some very bad junk food habits lately, which explains why the extra weight just won't go away). Today I went for a walk (I was originally going to hop on the bus to Value Village but it was raining very, very hard this morning; when the rain let up, I decided to just ramble around a bit). I ended up at Pete's Frootique, a fancy sort of grocery store with lots of organic things and local things and gourmet things and generally delicious-looking things to eat. I picked up a few ordinary things of the vegetable variety (I did splurge on a yellow zucchini instead of a green one -- they looked so lovely), and found some things I've been looking for since I moved here (like rice paper). And tea! I finally found Lapsang Souchong. And loose, too. They have many loose teas and so I shall be going back. Why I hadn't gone there before now, I do not know.

On the way back, I stopped in at a newsstand that had the best selection of magazines I've seen since Yates Street News in Victoria closed, and spent a pleasant half-hour browsing. I bought a couple things to read, and now I am back and blogging and there is some sushi in the fridge waiting for me to eat it.

21 June 2006

Umm . . . I'm Not Really Dead

Just really, really busy. But after Thursday I should have more time and will actually write something about what I've been doing, and even post pictures of art. Art by me! Right now I have to go spend the rest of the day making books for my final Book Arts project, which is due tomorrow morning. Then I have to find a few minutes to study for my 20th c Art mid-term slide test. But first, more tea.

02 June 2006

What country should you live in?

Which country should you REALLY be living in?

The United Kingdom

You have pride in yourself and pride in your country. You believe that history and culture is an important factor to the future of your country, and that traditions and values should be upheld. You love your scones and tea, and reading soppy romance novels. The UK is where you should be...

Personality Test Results

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More Star Wars Geekery

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