Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Art Critique

An email from a fellow creative type has prompted the following thoughts. I wish that when people are giving feedback to someone on their art or design, that they would keep something in mind: You are not doing anyone a service if your feedback is destructive. Don't try to mold people into your vision of what is good, especially if you know full well you have specific narrow definitions of what is good (or what is art or what is SO last year in design ). There is a world of creativity that exists beyond you. You can have your particular likes and dislikes. This makes us the individuals we are, but that doesn't mean that your view is gospel. You may personally dislike something. It just might not be your thing. I can tell you that so much work falls into the "Meh" category for me, but when offering a critique, try to be charitable! Look at what the view of the artist or designer is, then see if you can offer something that will help them. Become part of the process! It's great to have a dialog with someone about their work if you are providing them with things to think about that may result in productivity. If what you say is just going to put them down or make them feel like crap, then don't say it, because it serves no purpose. If you can offer words that will inform their process and help them grow professionally, artistically or personally, then I think that's great, but if it's being destructive, then you haven't achieved anything for either of you.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Biscuits or cookies...

depending on where you're from.

Yesterday I baked some chocolate biscuits from a recipe book that my sister Robyn gave me. So good.

Many didn't make it to the filling stage and were eaten straight off the cooling rack.

Despite our most valiant efforts to eat all of them, we couldn't manage it, so some will have to wait until next weekend to be filled, because today I'm going to make some wholemeal apple muffins.

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Yoga, Walks and Wing Chun

Now that Shawn is working, I miss not seeing him at lunch time and straight after work. I have to say that the house is lot cleaner though. I find it easier if I keep myself busy, so this usually means cleaning. Not a bad thing since we have a nice space to be in when it's done.

Yesterday afternoon I made myself do some yoga as well. I've been stacking on weight this winter and not getting much exercise, so I'm feeling very unfit and not altogether right. Although not exactly a fat blasting cardio workout and I was bored during most of it, my whole body felt a lot better afterwards and today I'm sitting up straighter. What I would really like to do, is work on my flexibility and balance with Yoga, strength with weights, and cardio with walking (and a little running). Walking around my neighbourhood is quite nice because off the main streets are lots of parks and down by an old creek they've put in a pond with little fishes and frogs.

My ideal exercise combo would be Yoga, Walks and Wing Chun. If I ever get back to a decent level of fitness I would love, finances permitting, to start taking Wing Chun at the International Wing Chung Academy. This style of martial arts appeals to me greatly because it was developed by a woman. This means my gender, height, strength etc. aren't a huge disadvantage when learning this. Also, who doesn't want to learn the one inch punch?! I think it would help a lot with focus, self-discipline and relaxation. The reason I'd want to get to a reasonable level of fitness before starting is that I think the warm-ups/downs alone would be pretty hard, lots of sit-ups, push ups, jogging, kicking/punching bags. Yeah... we'll see how that goes.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Hail Almighty

I just drove home from work in THIS. It was not fun, in the least. The hail was only the size of green peas, but there was a hell of a lot of it. The car was slipping and I thought for sure I'd have hail damage, but I didn't see any. Good car.

Mmm TVeee

We went up to Dad and Donna's for lunch this weekend. Very tasty.

While we were there Dad gave us a spare DVD/VCR combo. Life saver. I've been looking for a multi-region one everywhere since our vcr died and the dvd started being crappy... ok crappier. Now I don't have to fight sleep to stay up and watch TV. I can TAPE things now. *purr* Cheap entertainment.

On the topic on cheap entertainment, if we want to see a movie at the cinema we go on cheap nights. We're going to see The Libertine tonight.

Thursday, August 10, 2006


On the odd occassion I get the urge to knit something. This urge only comes about once every couple of years, just long enough for me to forget most of what I learnt last time I did any knitting. So, after some jogging of the memory, I've been knitting a cat blanket/bed for Kimba. Good starter project. The pattern is mostly from Stitch 'n' Bitch and also from my mind because they didn't specify yarn ply only brand name. How annoying. Also, I can't be bothered counting rows so I've been winging it a little with this. It's working out well.

This one I've knitted with "eyelash" type yarn, for the fluffy effect, together with 4 ply on 6.5mm needles. This makes for a very soft blanket which will be good for sticking on the bed when Kimba insists she needs to be on it (which ususally happens on a weekend morning and we're sleeping in). I really don't want her sleeping directly on the bed because it wouldn't be good for Shawn's asthma, no matter how much he thinks Kimba should be allowed on the bed. This way, any fur will be on the blanket which can be removed when we get out of bed.

I should probably also mention that if you're knitting something like this for a pet, go buy the yarn at somewhere like Spotlight. You don't need to spend big on really nice yarn for the cat, she won't know the difference, I promise. A cheap baby 4 ply and way cheap eyelash yarn does it for this.

Next knitting project will be something for a friend's baby.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Tax Time!

Recently I was perusing Aimee's blog and reading about all her efforts to lose debt. This made me think about taking a closer look at my finances and not take so many things for granted. First thing I did was go get my tax done for the year. Good plan! They estimate nice fat return, all of which will go straight onto my credit card. It won't completely kill off wedding, honeymoon and US trip expenses, but I'm very close! Then I just have an old, but quite large, student loan to pay off. At least the only interest that get's added to it is whatever inflation was for that year. Yay?

Another thing we're doing is getting dvd's out from the local library instead of renting them from a video store. They don't stock a lot of pure entertainment (not that I'm interested in anyway), but they have stuff we want to watch regardless: cooking shows, music documentaries, etc. I'm sure we'll make our way through what interests us pretty quickly, but it's still saving us money in the meantime.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Long Lunch

What nice up-turn my day has had. I met Shawn in the CBD for lunch after he went to see his employment agent. I decided we should eat somewhere a little nicer than the average sandwich shop for once, so I took him to Chinta Ria Temple of Love. I love that place. It aways feels like summer inside, even when it's winter. Shawn then tells me that he got a three month contract. So we definitely had cause to have something nicer than a sandwich. The food was delicious, the colour inside made me happy and the massive, smiling stone Buddah that greets you when you enter is awesome. I challenge anyone to eat at that place and feel cranky. I wish I'd brought my camera!

On my way to work...

This morning I watched a beautiful German Shorthaired Pointer get hit by a car. I watched it get hit, get rolled over, but it jumped out from under the side and started running down the street! Incredible. Although I fully expect that the poor animal had broken bones and was just running on adrenalin. I was looking for how I could turn my car around to go see if I could help it because the car that hit it kept going for a while. Thankfully it looked like it was just looking for somewhere to stop.

There are a couple of things I don't like about this whole thing, other than it's just awful to see a a living thing getting hit by a car only two meters away from you. I can imagine how the driver who actually hit the dog felt about this. The other things I don't like are that the driver who hit it should have had full visibility of the animal from where he was, although I know how easy it is to be a tad vague when you've just woken up and generally your eye looks out for other cars and things that are actually taller than the bonnet of your car. The other thing I don't like is that a dog was roaming the streets unattended, although I know that GSPs require a lot of exercise and if they aren't getting it, they'll break out and run around themselves. Pets deserve better protection. If you have a dog like that, you need a tall fence! I'll give him this though, he was crossing at the lights!