Write On!: Get Graphic! Go Comic!

Are you drawn to drawing your own world? Do you picture rows of frames, imagine scenes, come up with your own cast of characters and play those scenes out in your mind? Is there, somewhere near, a messy pile of graphic novels or comic books that you have poured over a hundred times or more? Have you, ever, imagined that your work could, one day, be found in one of those piles?

KRAK! WHOOSH!! SPLAT!!!! There is an art to Making Comics. Get graphic! Go comic!! Try your hand at Cartooning and Creating Comics from Start to Finish. See what Stan Lee’s How to Draw Comics is all about. Learn The Art of Urban Sketching. Pour over Manga for the Beginner. Then, get busy composing Words for Pictures and splash each page with speech bubbles that balloon and go pop! A Glossary of Comics Terminology and the Letterform Archive are essential tools to put in your power pack. Continue reading “Write On!: Get Graphic! Go Comic!”

The Art of Protest: The Language, Music and Images of Civil Discontent

Joining a protest is personal and a public event. People from all ages and all walks of life take to the streets calling for societal change. Throughout history worlds of people have marched, from handfuls to millions with voices raised, through cities and towns.

When The People Speak, heads turn. Everybody is filled with a heightened awareness. What message is being sent? Who is speaking as a shouting crowd of onlookers responds? From a singular voice to multitudes, the sounds of a protest command attention. There is more than one way, however, to be heard.

Artists speak through their work, seeking to capture the tenor of their times. A protest march can be a dramatic affair incorporating music, chants, costumes and signs. A throng of people stride through the center of town, disrupting business, blocking traffic, calling attention to a cause. How do you know they’re coming? Drumbeats and chants sound through the air long before the first row comes into view. Continue reading “The Art of Protest: The Language, Music and Images of Civil Discontent”

Slowing Down

For me March was always the kick off to camping season. Finding a cabin early in the season then in April heading to our family campsite on the Olympic Peninsula for opening day of fishing; May and June to Eastern Washington before it gets too hot and that itch to go and explore is still there. To combat that sense of go, go, go I walk since it’s now my only form of escape. What I noticed this time around, since I have the time and don’t feel a need to rush, I actually pay more attention to my surroundings.

Still image from 10 Parks That Changed AmericaI found a pocket park near my house. A tribute to fallen motorcyclists with trees and placards honoring those who had passed. Walking through slowly I read all the names and couldn’t believe I hadn’t seen it before. Maybe because it was next to a busy street and so more of a place we pass then visit, but not that day. Continue reading “Slowing Down”

Animal Crossing in Real Life

So, I hear you spent a lot of time at home during the quarantine. Same here – I was getting out, though, here and there. Chatting with neighbors, planting flowers, even travelling via plane – all from the comfort of my own home!

Like the vast majority of Nintendo Switch owners, I’ve been playing Animal Crossing New Horizons since it released back on March 20th. While I can say without a doubt that no one is enjoying living through a pandemic, finding little social loopholes like Animal Crossing has made it a little more bearable. For those who aren’t familiar, Animal Crossing is a franchise started by Nintendo in 2001. Since then, the franchise has had 4 additional main titles, 3 spin offs, and even an animated movie. Much like The Sims, Animal Crossing is considered to be a “social simulation” game. However, unlike The Sims, you and the friends you may be playing with in the game are the only humans. All the non player characters are anthropomorphic animals.

Animal Crossing
Animal Crossing. Photo courtesy of Jaz W.

Continue reading “Animal Crossing in Real Life”

Digital Knitting

While Ravelry.com is arguably THE place to get knitting and crocheting patterns, Seattle Public Library has many pattern books as ebooks that are free to borrow, from beginner learning books like Teach Yourself Visually Knitting, to books on advanced techniques such as Knitting Brioche: The Essential Guide to the Brioche Stitch by the venerable Nancy Marchant. Here’s some stash-busting suggestions.

 

Knitted Tanks & Tunics: 21 Crisp, Cool Designs for Sleeveless Tops by Angela Hahn is a perfect place to find cool knits as the weather warms in the PNW. Find patterns for linen yarn as well as layering tanks in this gorgeous pattern book. Find more warm weather patterns in Knitting in the Sun: 32 Projects for Warm Weather by Kristi Porter. We sometimes take for granted the material we work with as crafters. Continue reading “Digital Knitting”