Here, one can feel free to sift through the multitudes of posts that have graced this site's homepage. The navigation to the right will take you to the month of your choosing. Then you can select the day you would like to jump to if you prefer not to scroll down. Relax. Enjoy.
03MARCH | Back to Top
307|4 Welcome to the redesign of site|tamashii. Don't get used to it. Well, OK, if you want. Its growing on me too.
To be sure, this is all one big experiment. I am rigorously learning CSS. This stuff is hard. Way hard. All this user-accessibility stuff to make a nice looking site is killing me. I think my FRIEND is doing better. I just want a nice design. Apparently CSS is the way to go, but damn...
For example: How the hell does FIR work? Well, see the SITE|TAMASHII REDESIGN graphic in the upper right? Thats FIR BABY!!!
[EDIT: The upper right graphic (SITE|TAMASHII VERSION.03) is no longer using the FIR method in CSS.]
By the by, clicking on PORTFOLIO takes you to the old site, until I get the new portfolio up. If you wanna come back here, click on that handy BACK button on your browser.
308|4 Sleep is for the weak. Why, oh, why cant I be more weak. This glorious version of my site is almost done. There are a few tweaks, to be sure, but it will be done oh so soon. I keep running back and forth between several CSS related sites (stopdesign for one) and testing on different browsers. Honestly, I only have two browsers to test with - IE/Mac and Safari. I have read that I should build for IE then work with the lesser knowns like Safari. Interestingly enough, IE keeps having problems with validated and approved code from W3C. I have no idea why, but Safari is performing like a champ comparatively.
I need to make an archive. Better yet, I need to figure out how to make a BLOG. Those look so cool.
For those of you interested, my ridiculously cool friend, James Kersey, is going to attempt the 24 Hour Comic Challenge. Info on that event here. Looks like he might have to drive to Arlington, but perhaps a local shop will host it here in Austin.
312|4 Its a bright and shiny moonlit night, folks. Yup, I am up until the wee hours of the Friday morning finalizing some stuff and adding a new sub-section: ARCHIVES. Turns out, this web host does not support CGI for us free-loaders. You gotta pay if you want the good stuff. Therefore, no BLOG for me. And it woulda been cool, make no mistake. On the bright side, it will keep me occupied everytime I make a new post. Will keep me on my toes, so to speak.
So, PORTFOLIO is all nice and complete. And when I say complete, I mean that all I need to do to it is update it whenever I have new work to show or win a new award. Which reminds me... back in June of 03 The City of Georgetown website won a TAMIO (Texas Association of Municipal Information Officers) Award for Best New Site in the state for a city with less than a 100,000 population. I redesigned the site while at GraphX Creative. The webmaster for the City of Georgetown, Erin McDonald, has done a marvelous job of coding and maintaining this website. She deserves the majority of the credit for the award. Design plays only a portion of the voting process. As soon as Ms. McDonald delivers an image of the award, I will post it to the AWARDS section.
315|4 I would like to disclose, more closely, what I have been up to in the past couple of days. Well, let me be clear, it is all hush-hush, but I am VERY excited about a particular event that transpired Friday afternoon. I postulate it was a most smashing success *spoken in my brilliant English accent*. I am hopeful for a positive outcome.
On to more pressing business. Interactive. SCOAB Interactive. For those of you who know little about me (which is quite a few, I imagine), SCOAB Interactive is a gaming company set up by James Kersey and, well, a little by me. Honestly, it is beyond small time. It is a hobby. We have no aspirations for being the next mega-gaming-corporation. We just want to make really fun games that we think a lot of people would like to play. When we first started doing stuff for SCOAB, we followed the "For Gamers, By Gamers" mantra. Then when the site came to be designed, we decided upon a target audience (TA). Now this is my opinion and I do not speak wholly for James, but I don't think the TA decided upon was beneficial to SCOAB. Ultimately, we designed the site with the TA in mind and after we got around two pages up, production on the site all but halted. I think that because we did not feel strongly about the direction SCOAB was taking, we were limiting our involvement with growing it further. Even the logo seems errant for the future we set out SCOAB to achieve. With that said (and forgive my rambling), SCOAB is in full redesign. Right down to the logo. We are now traveling the "For Us, By Us" path and whoever shall follow will become our target audience. SCOAB is being reborn and I will keep everyone up-to-date.
318|4 Well, as stated on Monday, I had an exciting event on the 12th. Still rather on the downlow, but the outcome was more than positive. I will be privy to an encore on Monday the 22nd. If I thought I was going through hoops on Friday, Mondays hoop is set on fire. The good news is, I am wearing an asbestos suit and love adventure. More on that as it develops. As always, I foresee a positive outcome.
In other news: Mr. Kersey will get to do the 24 Hour Comic Challenge in a local store. It is still unknown what James comic will be about. I suggested he go with one of his more humorous ideas, but in the end, it is his decision and he should feel no reservations on that decision.
I was toying with the idea of redesigning my logo. I mean, it is nice and all, but it doesn't have that certain something. Whatever it is, I started work on it last night. I made a few sketches in the ol sketchbook. Then I proceeded to do some work on the machine. For this post, it will be referred to as the machine because in no way was it acting like a computer. After about an hour and a half of design work, I saved the file for the last time. As I quit Illustrator, an error message popped up to tell me the file had a problem saving. Ok, no problem, Ill just reopen the file from the Open Recent menu. Ah, there it is, in the menu as predicted. Unfortunately, that final save must have corrupted something along the way and the file no longer existed in any form upon the machine. It lied to me. It did not save it as it said it did nor did it bother to keep any remnants of a previous save. Rather, it obliterated the entire file when it encountered whatever problem it had for saving that one last time. Moral of the story: Frequent saves mean little when you are apparently not meant to change your identity.
I wonder if there is a way to instantiate a poll on this site. Why? Cuz I wanna play with it. Fortunately for you, gentle reader, my web host will most likely not support (for free) whatever is required to make a poll on my site. Also, PORTFOLIO is updated a bit and I am considering adding a RANDOM ITEMS to the LAB.
320|4 Thats right ladies and gents! Step right up! See the new monkey in the LAB. Fresh from the press, a new design that serves no real purpose, has no real goals, simply exists to exist.
This item was created for the VERSUS design site. This site is one of many outlets for the design community. Unfortunately, I can no longer find the address for this site. And, actually, it wasnt taking off quite like the creator of the project had hoped. Cest la vie.
322|4 Today was promising. That event I mentioned last week went very well. Very well indeed. At least in my opinion. I just have to sit back, relax and wait. I will find out the ultimate outcome to all of this, most likely, late Wednesday afternoon. Heres to crossed fingers and knowing I am good at what I do.
Meanwhile, quite a few months ago, I was a part of the FFXI Online Beta for PlayStation 2. I loved being a part of this beta test. It was my third to date, after EverQuest Online Adventures and Auto Modellista. The beta ended in October with the retail release of FFXI for the PC. I am still a little confused why a game that originated in Japan on the PS2 was being released in the U.S. on the PC first. The exclusivity of FFXI Online on PCs will come to an end as the retail version will launch for PS2 tomorrow, the 23rd. I recently received my email from Sony stating that I will receive my reward for being a part of the beta test some time this week. That reward being a retail copy of the PS2 HDD with FFXI Online pre-installed. I consider this to be the best MMORPG I have ever played. And what makes this game even greater is that the two versions will be able to coexist with each other. PCs and PS2s able to play on the same servers making worlds more populated and growing a vast community. Its gonna be cool.
323|4 Yes, I am plagued once again by short-term insomnia. I am in anticipation of FFXI being released to the masses today for PS2 users. Annoyingly, I still await my copy in the mail. Fortunately, it is free. This benefit outweighs any amount of waiting. I am also nervous about the outcome of Mondays event. Still thinking positively, but that doesnt negate my brain from thinking of all the negatives.
So what does a fidgety designer do when he cant sleep? He designs, of course. And I am trying to burn off this energy by delving into SPeCks. *Just for you curious ones out there: SPeCks is not an anacronym.* Holy cow! Dictionary.com has a subscription base now?! Try to look up anacronym and it says you have to log in as a Premium member to view the definition. Another resource swallowed up by the all mighty dollar. (EDIT: I was actually looking for the word acronym. Now I am curious what anacronym means as there is apparently an entry for it.) Anyway... I made a little "Coming Soon" mini banner of sorts for SPeCks as seen to the right there. Gave me a chance to play with ImageReadys animated gif options. I suppose everyone would rather have me actually make Issue 01, but you are just gonna have to wait and enjoy my hype for a bit longer. Funny shtuff is hard to generate.
326|4 Well brand my ass and call me Bevo! A big WOO-HOO to my interview skills and, of course, my book. Ok, confusion and curiosity has, no doubt, set in for many of you. On the 12th, I had an interview with The University of Texas System for a Web/Art Manager position. I did well in that interview and was one of two invited back for a final round on the 22nd. That interview was a one-on-one with the Vice Chancellor of External Relations. Intimidated? Yes. Nervous? Yes. Confident? Hell-yes! After all was said and done, they voted me in. I win. To the victor goes a steady paycheck.
Damn, its good to be good. Nothing further to report.
04APRIL | Back to Top
413|4 Despite whatever rumors you might have heard, I have not met a grizzly end on the point of a bulls horn. I feel bad for leaving many of you (are there really any of you out there??) in the dark without my witty prose. Well, fear not, I am back and... well... I am back! Lets recap shall we?
So I am sure some of you are wondering how my new job is going. It is great! Marvelously well, in fact. I work from 8:30AM to around 6-6:30PM and I am not bothered by it. Why? Because I am loving the work I have been given so far. And the people there are awesome. I would have truly missed out if I didnt get hired. So what if I didnt get hired? What would have been my post on that day? Well, it just so happens that I had two posts ready to go live based on the outcome of that Friday afternoon. Had I not gotten the job, you would have seen this:
326|4 On the 12th, I had an interview with The University of Texas System for a Web/Art Manager position. I did well in that interview and was one of two invited back for a final round on the 22nd. That interview was a one-on-one with the Vice Chancellor of External Relations. Intimidated? Yes. Nervous? Yes. Confident? Hell-yes! In the end, however, I was not the fit they were looking for. Gracious loser? Yup. Obviously, the guy who got the job was the better choice. Heres to future interviews and an eventual job.
At least I was in the blast radius.
Yup! I knew you missed my humor.
Now that we are up to date. What else have you missed? Ah yes... I am really really really working on SPeCks. I promise. I am in process of writing the script for page 2. I was initially planning on an April 1 release, but clearly, that was a joke (get it? April Fools - ah skip it). Looks like I am now shooting for a May 1 release. Speaking of April 1st, I had this post ready to go as well, but forget to make it live. Obviously, It will come down after the stated date - perhaps within the week.
By the by... I just came across a new song by DJ BENNY BENASSI. This guys song, Satisfaction, is top-notch. I really like the rhythm line laid down. However, I found this song by finding the video it is attached to. I wont lie and say I do not like the video, but it is rather risque. A good solid R rating, so this isnt for the kiddies. I like the song and have the video as a result of having the song. DOWNLOAD at your own risk. This is a limited-time offering. I will remove this link on 401|4, and despite it being April Fools I am not kidding. It will no longer be available.
[EDIT: The above link has been removed. The video is no longer available for download. I told ya I wouldnt forget.]
So it will not come down on the 1st. But dont think I wont forget about it and leave it up there. Basically, the link will just no longer be active.
In other news. FFXI is still rockin! Best damn MMORPG EVER! Just ask Stratics.com if you dont believe me. I love this game and it coupled with my job are consuming almost all of my available time. Also, I just stumbled upon a really great manga. Well, I lie, I visited this site years ago and thought it had some merit, but recently I have found myself in full swing to support this guy. It is a online comic called MegaTokyo. I highly recommend it. And dont be a freeloader! This guy works hard. Damn hard. I bought both of his Volumes (collecting Chapters 0-2) and think it is worth supporting this guy.
What else... what else? OH! Parking rocks for UT System Administration employees! I also am down to my last bottle cap for a free song from iTunes. Shoot, I just cant come up with anything right now. Consider yourself lucky. More to follow.
414|4 I am really excited about this piece of news. I finished the scripting for page 2 and am sure I can push out page 3s script out before the weekend. All I would have is to actually build it. I think I could actually finish the first 3 pages by the end of the weekend! WOO-HOO!
With all that said, I am considering going from 3 pages per issue to 6. As I am planning on releasing an issue every two weeks, I think 3 pages a week is possible and a good goal to strive for. Now, I am not saying that I will be able to actually meet my deadlines, but those are the deadlines I am setting for myself. All in all - SPeCks will be all over this space on the 1st.
420|4 I know, almost a week without word and you guys get a little worried. Well, work is really occupying a lot of time. As it should. I am doing some nice stuff, if I may say so. After this week, I will have completed three projects since I started. By completed, I mean sent to press. And these jobs arent small potatoes either. A program for a major symposium, banners for said symposium and a folder/brochure package for an educational facility. I dont want to say what they are specifically until they are 100% finished. Sort of a CYA thing. I will be working on an invitation during this week.
What makes me feel really good, is that I am still really liking this job. I know I havent even scratched the surface of my actual job duties yet (namely web stuff), but the work seems really flexible for my style of design. And, I think the bosses really like what I have done for them so far!
In other news... SPeCks WILL be done by May 1st. Of that, I have no doubts. I am finalizing the script for the last page of Issue01 and just have to do the production after that. Production will take the longest for this round as I am creating a library of assets at the same time. However, because of the library, I foresee producing the comics to be a breeze in the future, leaving plenty of time for the really hard part - coming up with a story that people actually want to read. I am impressed by those individuals that illustrate every issue from scratch, on top of writing the story. I think I am cheating by creating the entire series on computer so that I can, literally, drag-and-drop pre-rendered elements into pre-made layouts. After the first 2-3 issues, the only real work I will be doing will be writing the story.
425|4 Ok, so first off, apparently there are people who do visit this site... and they apparently read it too.
So James Kersey is a GOD. Well, ok, I am not worshipping false idols, but the man is a god of the comic world. To me, at any rate. Yesterday was the start of the 24HourComics deal. Not really a competition so much as a challenge set forth to prospective comic book peoples. The man goes to AustinBooks at 7 in the AM to create a 24 page comic. Now, being in a room with a bunch of other dreamers wishing to make a comic book is one thing. Being in a room with a bunch of media people, is another. Being above all of the hype and potential fame and saying, "My ass hurts" and leaving to finish your work at home - thats inspirational. And so far, this book of his is great! Funny, illustrated nicely (of course) and a nice story indeed. Well, if you like bizarre, space-alien, humorous detective stories. And they wear ties. Mulder would be pleased. All I can say is, "I knew him when...!"
SPeCks is taking another path... in distribution. There are several online comics proliferating the web. Many of them, well, suck. That's right. I don't like quite a few out there. There are some out there that lead me to believe that if they can do it, why can't I. I mean, there story lines and "comic" ability are so below par, I would rather watch that Arlo Guthrie movie over and over again with my eyes held open with razor blades. And they release these abominations to the public 3-5 times a week. And they do speaking tours at comic-cons. And people keep supporting them... I digress. Anyway, so Jim tells me that I should reconsider my Once-Every-Two-Weeks release of an issue. That people might "forget" about a new issue coming up and therefore not revisit the site to read the comic. Jim is smart. Jim is great. Jim is right. SPeCks will now have 1 page released 3 times a week. I respect Fred Gallagher, the creator behind MegaTokyo. I really like MegaTokyo and Freds humor for manga and think his schedule for releasing MT is a good one. With that said, I will adopt the Monday, Wednesday and Friday schedule he follows. Look for the first page on May 3rd!
05MAY | Back to Top
501|4 Wow, it has been a while. And only 4 posts in April. I am busy - clearly. How about a month in review?
First off, the first page of SPeCks is ready for viewing! YEA!!! I am really excited about this. I really dont have enough time to be doing this, but I do it, none-the-less. It is a good exercise for me to utilize Illustrator to create these pages. I am keeping up with my technical skills, while also keeping my wit and story writing fresh. Yes, it is fun and it is a hobby, however, I really can do it sparingly and the schedule for the release of pages might slip from time to time. This is fun for me and entertainment I give freely to you. Be gentle on me if I miss a day.
I had 2 major projects I was working on for UT System which involved 4 elements. The Chancellors Council Annual Symposium was held on April 30th and they needed a program, a "list" of members to the council and large banners for the event. The program and the "list" (a newspaper style publication of around a gazillion names) were delivered in a timely fashion and turned out just spot on. The banners... well... I am publicly blasting BannerSignGraphics in Austin, TX. These guys not only delivered these items (15 24"x10' banners) late, they did a poor printing job. I am being generous - THEY SCREWED UP! Royal. I pose this question: What is the University of Texas color? If you dont live in Texas, I can see this information not being a priority. If you do live in Texas - shame on you for not knowing it is orange. Burnt Orange. PMS 159. Bottom line, it is orange. Under the UT System, there are 15 institutions. Not all of these institutions share the same orange color as UT at Austin. However, there are 6 institutions (Austin included) that do have orange as their main color. BannerSignGraphics (site is currently down) apparently thinks UTs primary color is... wait for it... PINK! I assume they do not actually think that, but that didnt stop them from letting 5 out of the 6 orange banners leave their store as completely pink banners. And not just regular pink... HOT PINK! Now, that would be bad enough, but they KNEW they were pink. Why? Cuz they hid the freakin banners that were pink at the bottom of the box, delivered them late, with the intent (no doubt) that we would not see them until it was too late to do anything about it. Too bad for them, I am on top of my job. Again, it would be bad enough with just having them made this mistake, but nooooo. They now go out of their way to not apologize for, at least, the inconvenience, AND they blame ME! How? They say that because I did not bring a Pantone chip so they could match the color with, that it would be hard to match the orange I wanted. Er... I not only gave them a color print of the ORANGE banners, but also the PMS colors for each one and the break-outs for each PMS. BUT WHO CARES ABOUT THAT!!! These banners were PINK! Not orange. PINK! Thats not even in the same ballpark of colors - hell, not even the same sport where UT is concerned. Orange is not Pink. Pink is not Orange. And they blame me for their printer screwing up. BSG - you are idiots. Good day to you.
Oh, and the 2nd project was a brochure for the UT Elementary School. It turned out nice - I liked it. CopyCraft rocks! Not only did they bend over backwards for us to get both the CC materials and this job out on time, but the materials came out really nice. Good job guys!
What else, what else. Ah - James comic is coming along nicely. Funny stuff. I am both overjoyed to be reading it during production but somewhat saddened to know that when finished, I wont experience of reading it fresh like so many of you lucky peeps out there. What a talent. Also, if you own a PS2, you should totally consider getting FFXI for it. Still love this game, though I dont play it nearly enough. Packed week folks... packed!
Needless to say, my first month at UT System has come and gone. What are my impressions, thoughts, etc? I love it! There were a few hiccups with some of the timelines of my projects (as is the natural demons of any shop), but I worked them out, with finesse. This job is great, I fit in with the people there and I really feel like I am part of something. May all of you find a job as rewarding.
505|4 Page 2 for SPeCks Issue01 is now available for viewing.
I am going to have to build a separate site for these guys, arent I?
First, go here.
Then, go here.
507|4 Page 3 for SPeCks Issue01 is now available for viewing.
Ok, wow, this hobby of mine is turning out to be a bit of work, hehe. Anyway, as you can see, Page 3 is up and... crawling. I almost forgot to actually post the little bugger. But I managed to update the page and now I have a weekend to finish out the last three pages of the issue, cuz I gotta get those up for ya next week. If you guys like this stuff, some feed back would be nice. I know I only have 3 pages up and I am just starting, but it is nice to hear that I am not wasting everyoness time.
Still debating about the new site exclusively for it. I should probably do that so that SPeCks seem a little more of their own entity.
510|4 Page 4 for SPeCks Issue01 is now available for viewing.
This is turning out to be a bit frivolous on the Index page. Not so much in difficulty as much as clutter. So, just to be clear, SPeCks will be released every Monday, Wednesday and Friday. I wont update the index with SPeCks update unless it falls on a M/W/F when I post news.
Currently, I just dont have the desire or drive to create a new site exclusively for SPeCks. There are more important things to focus on at the present and I just dont have the time to do yet another website outside of maintaining this one and my actual job. If you havent noticed, there is a new design in the Random section of the Lab.
517|4 SPeCks have made it through the first issue. Whew! This weekend was jam packed. I had a bit of a tamale making party on Saturday, which was way delicious (got 3 dozen to take home, can we say lunch for the next week?). Had my niece for the weekend (always a joy). Played a little FFXI (never a dull moment, plus made 2 levels). Got my hair cut, missed getting fitted for a tux, bought a new Apple keyboard, scripted some of Issue02, and bought a new book I am really interested in reading (The Time Traveler's Wife).
Unfortunately, you might have noticed that I failed to mention getting any production work done on SPeCks. That's right folks, I have already failed to meet my personal deadlines for this comic - and in just the first month (certainly there is an accomplishment in laziness there). But I am not a total slacker. I created a "Sorry I Suck" page for everyone to look at while I hurry to create the pages that were due for today (and this week, for that matter). I have now set a ridiculous goal of getting pages 2.1 and 2.2 up by Wednesday. If I pull this off, please don't try to have an intelligent conversation with me... sleep deprived zombies rarely speak well.
PS: I didn't actually make any of the tamales. HAHAHA - I am a total freeloader!
525|4 I have set a new goal for myself and it is actually really really... really simple this time. As part of my new drive to be more like a designer and flex my creative muscle I am doing 5 thumbnail illustrations a day. And when I say thumbnail, I mean t-e-e-e-iny. Anywho, I did a couple of these thumbnails and one just really struck me as clever. So I scanned it in, and turned it into a 1920x1200 pixel desktop picture. Three words: Wheres My Pickle?!.
PS: SPeCks is cruising along nicely. Sorry about missing Page 4. I was hoping to have it up by the 25th, but it looks like I will have to wait until that evening. This will, undoubtedly, push Page 5 back to a 27th release.
526|4 What's odd, is that I am posting on the day before this post says I am.
As the title of this post states, this is the last "post" I will make on this homepage. I have decided to try out a blogger. At Blogger.com no less. Obviously, many people have utilized this free service and I see no reason why I shouldn't take part as well. So I created the account and now I can now consider myself a fellow blogger. Go me!
With all that said, I didn't have time to do anything for SPeCks tonight. But you know what? This weekend, I will work my fingers to bleeding so that all remaining pages for Issue02 go up before Monday and Page 1 for Issue03 is also up on Monday. Why, oh, why did I just promise that.
Eventually, this page will turn into an actual home page with a welcome and the like. Until then, say by the 1st of June, this post will stay. Also, I am not deleting the Archives page. That will still be accessible. I just won't be adding to it anymore as the blog does that for me.