Saturday, February 24, 2007

Traditional Toolkit!

Better make this one as quickly as I humanly can, it's really late here...

This past week as been nothing but dog walks, tidying up and laughing at Britney's head. But I've been wanting to do this for a long time now.

Well, I have to come down to this and say that in recent times I've become such a traditionalist. It was only when I realised that I had LOADS of watercolour paint left anf I thought, why not use it?

So I pulled out my camera and took a few shots. I must warn that this will be an image heavy post, so dial-up users brace yourselves!

Well, here's most of it. Markers, paints, pencils and all other bits and pieces are kept here.

The rest is kept in here - oil paints, Karisma pencils, a couple of pallettes and a box of spare Copic markers.
Here's where I keep all my sketchbooks and pads. I tend to buy a lot of them over time, and I get though them so quickly drawing all kinds of crap in. I usually get either A4 or A5, but I happen to like 10x7 inch ones best now. Just the right size.

Paint, masking fluid, a Nutella jar used as a water jar, and white ink. I have black ink as well which isn't shown here. The pallete below is the latest addition to the toolkit. Personally I don't really like tubes that much, so I decided to use the paint in "pan" style...

Pens, pencils and erasers are kept in this little tin. This could do with sorting out big time, since I shoved all kinds of pens in there, however old and worn out they are. You can also see a few plastic rulars and a cutting mat, which is obviously more durable than cardboard.

Brushes now, and as with the pens, I keep an assortment - meaning old and worn to brand spanking new ones. I use old ones to mix paint and apply masking fluid on.

These are Faber Castell Polychromos pencils, and in the tin are gouache paints. I hardly ever use the gouaches, and I've barely touched the pencils in forever. They're such a bitch to sharpen, now I remember why I sharpened them with a knife rather than a sharpener!

I just LOVE these - Copic markers. I've used these for about a year now and they're perhaps one of the best types of traditional tool I've ever used! Shame they're so expensive and hard to get hold of! I have to take a train ride to one shop I know that sells them. There's also one Kurecolor too which I used to be able to get locally. They can be just as good as Copic, but not many colours are available.

Now here's all the random crap I keep. I really should get rid of some of this, since I don't even use it. It just ranges from crappy old oil pastels [oil pastels a few of my artistic mortal enemies along with charcoal] and a toy water pistol.

And here's the rest - curve rulers, sharpeners, knifes, scissors, adhesives and the rest of the bunch are kept in here.

Of course, just because I have tons of art materials there it doesn't mean I've stopped using Photoshop! That's one of my more important tools for when I need to do stuff like colour adjusting, colouring, inking and cleaning.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Youtube is getting on my wick...

So yeah, I'm a Youtube user. I go round looking for free cartoons and other bits of TV other have uploaded to watch, might add to favourites, and probably give a comment on occasion.

Of course, Youtube are heavily backed up by third parties such as Viacom, so they are rampant on the removal of copyrighted material almost as soon as it's uploaded. I myself have uploaded copyrighted material many months ago, but for a number of completely different reasons I wish I hadn't!

It all started back in March when I first joined, and after a while I just uploaded a bunch of random crap. It was only when I got a copy of Rayman: The Animated series on DVD from a French seller on Ebay in April last year when I decided to upload all four episodes. Much later I was asked to upload several Count Duckula episodes by a friend, and that's where the troubles started.

In July 2006 11 videos containing Duckula episode parts were flagged. From then on I decided not to upload anything to Youtube again, but that didn't stop the subscribers coming in. As of now I have 57 subscribers, some of which are rather empty in everything. I'm guessing all they expect of me is more Duckula episodes, or perhaps more Rayman content. Either way, I'm not uploading them there. Disabling comments and bulletins won't be enough.

I keep getting asked to send episodes to people I don't even know through email - and they don't get to me just from Youtube, they come from MSN Messenger as well. It just takes too much of my time to upload the same file over and over again to different people via Yousendit. Plus I'm not on the best connection out there, so my upload rate is crap to no end.

Of course I'm a bittorrent user, but I occasionally use that for series I might not be able to get on DVD anywhere, such as Animals of Farthing Wood and Harry Hill's TV Burp. When I do get DVDs, say of Count Duckula, I'm most likely to replace the downloaded episodes with the legit ones that I can rip from them. That doesn't mean I fully support piracy though.

What I don't support is the sale of copied CDs and DVDs, which in the long run may ruin the CD and DVD playing systems they're run on. But then so can legits, but not as badly. I think this is because they make the system work much harder than legit ones - I should know because I used to play pirated games on my Dreamcast an awful lot in the past few years, and in the long run they wore my console out and I had to get a new one, so I'm no longer playing pirates on it.

Shame I said that, because I once had to buy a set of burned DVDs of the Detectives on eBay for my dad. Thankfully they were of good quality for TV rips, but that's not always the case. Most of the junk they sell on ebay could be of really poor quality and are not worth buying, even if it's that one series you loved so dearly. With downloads however if they're not up to your standards, all you need to do is press Shift and Delete.

Piracy is such a hard issue for me to talk about. So let's just say that if I was asked to say if I supported it, my answer would be yes and no. I can't wait for CD and DVD recycling banks to come locally...

Back to Youtube, well I've been thinking for a long time about whether to close my account or not. I think I will anytime soon now.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

Five years younger

Oh I wish I could actually look like I'm about to hit my 20s. And to have an ID. Because today I went out shopping with my mum, and I was about to buy a copy of Look Around You 2 in HMV after seeing that I could actually afford it now. However when I got to the till, I was asked for ID. So basically that clerk must have thought that I was under 15 years old! I had to get my mum to pay for it then, and so at least I have the DVD now.

I feel embarrassed. I really don't like looking like I'm 14. I'm 4'11'' tall, have a babyface and I wear bright, child-sized clothing, while hating to wear jewelry and make up. Therefore, I must be about 5 years younger than I actually am. It was OK when I was last asked for my age when I tried to buy a South Park video way back in 2000, when I was actually 12 going onto 13. But not now.

Looks like I'll have to stop wearing kids clothes and look out for really small more grown-up clothes I guess. Maybe then my fat arse won't ruin them.

Next post: I'll be showing you my toolkit! I.e the kind of things I use for my artwork.

Friday, February 02, 2007


Last night was one of the worst ever. Most likely my fault though because I was up until about 2AM finishing my commission painting. I have an art trade to get through as well, along with stuff for my Duckula fansite which still isn't complete yet, so it's best I work on these come the next week. Not too much though at one time though, unless I want to feel totally out of myself again.

Well I've been trying to take nasties off my mind by purchasing more DVDs than I ever did - just within this week I got "SpongeBob SquarePants: the first season boxset" [I've been wondering where in this country I could get a copy of that] from ASDA for £12, and in HMV I got lucky with Stoppit & Tidyup. Got kinda pissed when I went in Virgin and saw that The Trap Door was £8.99 when I paid £20 for my copy in HMV! Ah well. I'm gonna try and nab some comedy shows on DVD, like Look Around You and Big Train. And perhaps a few Dreamcast games while I'm at it.

My copy of Rayman 2 on Dreamcast has somehow stopped working, the console won't pick it up or anything. I even tried a boot CD but it still wouldn't work [I can't really play some of the pirate games I have anyway because my TV doesn't support 60MHz]. At least I have the PS2 version though, while that one seems more complete the graphics aren't as crisp as the Dreamcast one.

I also found a bunch of moth maggots on my wall as I was taking some of my sister's posters down...I've had these little pests infesting my room for about 2 years now. In fact, they've been infesting the whole household! I hate having to kill them but I have no choice really if I want to get rid of them.