Tuesday, September 16, 2008

I have one new design on Cafe Press based on the recent controversy about pigs and lipstick: http://www.cafepress.com/terrypond/5967392 with a pig in pink lipstick and the Palin Pitbull that has proved to be very popular. I am so thrilled to see the pitbull getting such a positive response! I would love to see someone at a rally wearing one of my designs. I've added new bumper stickers and coffee mugs to the selection: http://www.cafepress.com/terrypond/5950007

My other design is a dapple-ization of the Oktoberfest Weiner Dogs. I love dapples - they are so gorgeous -but it can be really hard to capture their markings, especially in vector art. I also need do do a piebald. This has been a very unproductive 4-5 days for me, with Kirk out of town and the school issues. I am way behind on email again. Hopefully I can get back into the groove tomorrow. So much art to create, so little time!!

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Politics as UnUsual

Yesterday I decided to make an illustration of a Pit Bull Terrier in Lipstick in honor of the latest political sensation, Sarah Palin. During her historic vice presidential nominee acceptance she mentioned that she is a Hockey Mom, and that the only difference between a Hockey Mom and a Pitbull is Lipstick. First I drew the pitbull, with big brown eyes and sweeping lashes, upswept ears, pearls and a sophisticated, perky raised chin. Of course what really pulls it all together are the bright red lips integrated into what really remains a dog face, yet I think captures some of Sarah Palin as well. I did several versions: Hockey Moms for Palin and Pit Bulls for Palin in versions with and without glasses. My new politics store can be seen here http://www.cafepress.com/terrypond/5950007 for shirts, campaign buttons, bumper stickers and more. Now my quest is to find a suitable animal to represent Obama. My mother suggests a bulldog for McCain, which actually makes a lot of sense.
I also have another new political design about Community Organizers, another hot button issue of late. Ms. Palin implied that Community Organizers have no responsibilities, which has reportedly annoyed several CO's.
My new design has a logo for Community Organizer which notes: Bringing People Together to Create Change and (yes, it is a big responsibility!). Products with this design are here: http://www.cafepress.com/terrypond/5950007.
I'm having a lot of fun with my Cintiq, but can't decide whether to move on to Halloween or continue with campaign stuff. Actually, at this late date I should be already designing for Christmas. Oi.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

The Scintillating Cintiq

The main theme of our lives yesterday was Kelly's first day of school, but interwoven with that was Kirk anxiously awaiting a computer order coming from UPS. He is upgrading his computer, passing his old but faster/more powerful desktop to me and in the usual trickle-down Kelly will get my current desktop with its better graphics card. For the last year I have done most of my work using my Compaq laptop and a portable tablet and drive. I got my first computer, a Mac, in 1994 (and met Kirk on AOL in 1995 using said Mac). Since then I have had at least five computers, not counting any I've used at work. I switched to PC after my 2nd Mac, a clone, made me mad enough to never go back. now as a die-hard PC user I really hate those Mac vs. PC commercials - makes me want to strangle that smug hoodie-wearing Apple guy.

Anyway, I found out around 6pm, when UPS finally came, why Kirk was so anxious - it seems there was a big surprise there for me: the coveted, wished for, drooled over, schemed for and ultimately given-up-on Cintiq 12wx. Kirk tells me that when he was ordering his new computer components that he accidentally left open a link I had sent him with a Cintiq demo and that Beebers, our Head Cat, in collusion with Itty Bitty, used auto-fill on his computer to buy it for me. As we all know cats are not as cognizant of the budget limitations in a household and should be prevented from ordering whatever they like. I recall a situation Steve Martin described when his cat ordered a bunch of cat toys and the resultant cat spit meant they could not be returned for credit. But I digress. I have a Cintiq.
I. Have. A. Cintiq.

I am in love! OMG, this thing is better than sliced bread, electric blankets and rice pudding put together. Here is my first drawing on the cintiq:

It is a sketch of Beebers using a Cintiq, which allows you to draw directly on the screen, like a real media paper pad. I opened that sketch in Illustrator and did this to it:

That was fun. Then I decided to "paint" it in PhotoShop and vectorize it in Illustrator with color, something I don't usually do:

Three very different looks...the possibilities stretching ahead are endless. No more scanning everything and then cleaning it up in the computer using a "blind" tablet (not to complain, I adore both my Intuos3 tablets). The Cintiq is going to revolutionize my workflow. Here's another sketch I quickly produced in Photoshop last night:
All of these sketches were done low resolution and very quickly, in between cooking pizza for Kelly, installing a Spongebob game on her "new" computer, and talking on the phone with my Auntie RaRa. I'm thinking it's time to start that German Shephard in Lederhosen drawing I've been meaning to do do. Kirk wants me to do a drawing of Barack Obama as Barackus Obama modeled after Mr. T on A-Team. He didn't care for the first one I did at his request (not buff enough I guess):

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

It's All About the Weiners!

Finally I have longhaired Dachshunds in Lederhosen for Oktoberfest! I did a longhair red weiner dog and a black and tan. I am also putting the shorthaired versions up with Oktoberfest text. The longhaired weenies have the saying "It's all about the Weiners!" on them, too. I was thinking about "I love beer and weiners" but just couldn't decide if that would appeal. The longhaired black and tan Oktoberfest products are here: http://www.cafepress.com/terrypond/5929761 and the reds are here: http://www.cafepress.com/terrypond/5925458.

Today was my daughter Kelly's first day of Kindergarten. We walked her down to the bus stop and waited with her. When the bus arrived she marched confidently aboard and took a seat. I will meet her when she gets off the bus in about a half hour. I hope her first day at school went well. She looked so cute and sweet this morning, with her pink and blue outfit, her fluffy short haircut and her new Spongebob backpack. I doubt she will give me a whole lot of clues about her day when she gets off the bus; I wish I could have watched a webcam to see how it went.

Still working on getting my mom out here - found out IL unemployment is going to drastically reduce her benefits because she applied for Social Security benefits - how not fair is that? Finding the search for information on UI benefits from state to state is really difficult. I consider myself a fairly expert Googler, but the trail to actual information is very convoluted, and you can forget about talking to anyone in person.