pyraxis: Pyraxis (Pyraxis)
Also known as Donna Williams, the author of the Nobody Nowhere autobiography series, Exposure Anxiety: The Invisible Cage, many other books, and the music albums Nobody Nowhere (2000) and Mutation (2005). She was also a fine artist and performing artist and gave presentations on autism all over the world.

She and her work had a massive impact on our life. )

She answered the next day. )

~

In the dream home that j-t had designed in her head, there was a reproduction of Donna Williams' sculpture My World-'The World' at the end of the entry hall/art gallery.

A life-size bronze sculpture of a nude young woman, holding an apple high in her right hand and gazing into it. Her left hand is behind her, palm out, as if to ward something off.

I just discovered she's left an incredible array of entries in her blog about her thoughts preparing for death and how she would like to be remembered afterwards. I'm going to have to read through this slowly 'cause I know I'm going to end up crying a lot.

She writes, "I felt really strongly I didn’t want a funeral and when I learned I didn’t have to have one, or a grave or any of the trappings, it fitted me. ... I wanted those who loved me to remember and celebrate me in nature, where I belong and will endure in a spiritual place and to make a personal alter or plant a plant to commemorate me where they can commune with me within their own world, for I am a patchwork of all who loved me just as they are, so this is where I live, in life, and after leaving my body."

We're not in a place yet where we can do this. So instead I'm going to take a risk and set this entry to public, at least for now.

Edit: Removed the "Vale" from the post title, which I learned is actually a Latin honorific for the deceased, meaning "farewell", not a first name as I had thought.
pyraxis: j-t as Sen from Spirited Away (j-t)
A deerlike being standing in a dark foresty place, with head lowered over a shallow bowl of water. He is staring directly into the viewer's eyes and his long tongue is lapping the water. His ears are cocked as if listening and there are dark circles of fur around his eyes. On his head, instead of horns, is a crown of living tentacles that coil and spiral like a halo around his head.

Photoshop and MotionComputing tablet

Concept was inspired from a sketch by the Spacerobots


There is a lot that could be said about the Nethik King, but very little that he will let me say tonight. Maybe the image can speak for itself.
pyraxis: j-t as Sen from Spirited Away (j-t)
I've gotten behind in posting sketches. I've been doing character studies for the set of stories that Shashigai is working on. I just scanned a few pages of them last night. All of them except the last one are done direct from reference, from photos I found on the internet. Not exactly the characters themselves yet, but working out a sense of them.

Drawings under cut )
pyraxis: Pyraxis (Pyraxis)
Crossposted to [community profile] 50books_poc.

Pierced by the Sun by Laura Esquivel

I thought I wasn't going to like this book. I'd rather read about a protagonist I admire, or at least one I might like as a person. There's not a lot to like about Lupita at the beginning of the story, and the first few chapters show all the signs of disintegrating into a preachy literary slice-of-life tale.

But Laura Esquivel surprised me. The seemingly random series of events surrounding the death of a local political figure start to shape up into a compelling mystery. As Lupita stumbles through her days, the reader gets a sense of a vivid social climate surrounding her, and the whole story is saturated with the cultural details of everyday life. It becomes clear she's in a lot of danger, and she barely escapes with her life on more than one occasion.

It's a murder mystery made of feeling as well as deduction. I've read a lot of detective fiction where the main character is coldly rational. Lupita is anything but rational, but she has a powerful intuition that serves her just as well. It was a breath of fresh air to realize that the author was deftly illustrating how it could be possible to solve a crime without high education or legal brilliance in an environment where the police are just as corrupt as the criminals. The character development is handled with grace and realism, and I really had to take back my initial judgements about Lupita's character.

Spoilery discussion of the ending )

Regardless, I really enjoyed the book and I'd recommend it to people who like mysteries with a dark or unusual bent.

Ace of Cups

Jul. 3rd, 2016 03:52 pm
pyraxis: j-t as Sen from Spirited Away (j-t)
A young black boy struggling to hold aloft an overflowing ornate wood chest. Water is cascading out of the chest, leaving puddles in the sand at his feet. The boy is wearing a brightly coloured woven loincloth with geometric patterns. In the background is a mud brick building with a round roof and set of double doors.

Photoshop, Wacom and MotionComputing tablet

All my disclaimers )

Anyway, it's Sha, struggling to lift an overflowing kifu, in front of Masta Ua.

New game

Mar. 29th, 2016 10:22 pm
pyraxis: Pyraxis (Pyraxis)
We discovered a new game at GDC that's been my addiction for the past few evenings. It's Niche, a genetic survival game that's sort of a cross between SimLife and Watership Down. You start with Adam and Eve, a pair of little foxlike creatures that don't have an official name yet, and you have to breed your people into a whole tribe while exploring their territory, finding food, and fending off carnivores and illness.

It's made by a small group of people from Switzerland, an indie team, and it's still in the very early stages. They've been Steam greenlit but haven't started a Kickstarter yet, and the publically available build of the game is still a demo version that you can't save. I shut down my computer every night because it has a really loud fan, so I've been obsessively playing the beginning of the game every evening but rarely making it past generation 10 or so.

At GDC they had a little stall and they were running a contest where if you could breed your little tribe to ten members, you would get on the list for a free early access key when they get that far. We are on the list. :) If you join their Facebook playtester's group, you can get a bleeding-edge recent version of the build which is better balanced than the public demo.

The best part about it is it's turn-based. And it has nothing to do with war. It's rare to find a good turn-based strategy game that's not about nation vs nation.
pyraxis: Pyraxis (Pyraxis)
I'm procrastinating by playing Drawception.

It is a ridiculous cross between Pictionary and Telephone where someone makes a prompt, the next person does an awkward 10-minute sketch of it in a little app like Paint, the next person guesses what the sketch was, on and on for fifteen iterations until the end result in no way resembles the prompt. It is oddly hilarious and also addictive. I figure what the hell, at least it's drawing practice, right?

Three sets of three drawings and prompts.
pyraxis: j-t as Sen from Spirited Away (j-t)
This one takes a bit of explanation. It's on Karn, but on a part of it that no one we know has explored before. Shashigai found a group of explorers who were venturing as far as the Last, which is the high mountain range out past keegrah (griff) territory where the keegrah go to die. This group of five made it through, and on the other side they came out into a deep rift heated by volcanic activity.

There were people there, who called the place the Kabo. There are huge twisted trees growing in the warmth of the hot springs, and the people make their homes up in their branches. But this picture is of an area out past them, on the other side of the rift, where a few have managed to make their homes in the bitter cold. And here's the part that the grehti can't hear of: some of their shapes are different. There are still tirothi and nethik, a few keegrah, and the taigh, who would be recognizable to Daria and her people. But there are also the woji, like the guy in this picture, and wolf-creatures who call themselves the sangh.

This picture was my Christmas present to Shashigai. The girl is Mikka, one of the people in his latest story.

A young woman with long black hair riding a creature that looks like a cross between a bear and a ferret, with fur the colour of fresh fallen snow. They're bounding across a winter landscape on a sunny day, surrounded by coniferous taiga trees.
pyraxis: j-t as Sen from Spirited Away (j-t)
There's a meme going around Tumblr with palettes by someone called AskTheStarGazers. The idea is you pick a palette and a subject and request the person to make a drawing. I tried it - no I'm not posting the results - and discovered that while the palettes look pretty cool, they're infinitely frustrating to work with. No tonal range! So I fixed them. I hope. Possibly my hard work will be for nothing the moment they're seen on somebody else's monitor, since I know my calibration is way off.

Anyway I haven't tried drawing with any of these colours, so they might need iteration. But you never know till you try, right?

I'm open to requests, your characters or mine or something else entirely. I don't do external fandom characters, but worldstuff is a maybe, especially if it's Myst or Minecraft.

18 swatches of colour, six colours each, which could be used as palettes for painting.
pyraxis: j-t as Sen from Spirited Away (j-t)
A blond young man in a parka and wraparound knitted hatscarfshoelace is fishing through a hole in the ice. The viewpoint is from below, beneath the ice, and a strange half-fish half-spider is nibbling at the hook. It has eight legs with crab claws on the end and fluttery fins reminiscent of a jellyfish.

Evan Leda, from [profile] yonjuunana's comic-in-progress.

Blame Shashigai, who said it should be a spiderfish.

In other news, grr, the Mojang authentication server is down and I can't play Minecraft. I baked cookies instead but I need to decide what to do next.

Hey Jim!

Sep. 12th, 2015 10:16 pm
pyraxis: j-t as Sen from Spirited Away (j-t)
A cartoon of Jim Nightmare, a young robot guy with blue-dyed hair, exposed metal over all parts of his body but the face and lower right arm, and a t-shirt with a heart on it. He's dressed in badly fitting priest robes and raising his hands as if in blessing, but they look more like claws. He has a goofy grin and he's saying Bless you, my children.

Don't worry, it's not your art trade picture. That's coming soon.

For the uninitiated )
pyraxis: j-t as Sen from Spirited Away (j-t)
I tried making an ice cream cake for the first time this year. It was a bit of a disaster. The kind of sloppy disaster that still tastes pretty good in the end, but there's no way anybody's going to mistake it for a store-bought cake.

A very sloppy, small round ice cream cake with one slice cut out of it. The icing is oozing down the sizes, revealing bits of ice cream, and the top cake layer is slipping off. There's a very rough checkered pattern on top done with chocolate magic shell toppping and coloured sugar flakes.

Live and learn )
pyraxis: Pyraxis (Pyraxis)
Hey, so I created a new journal filter for posting more technical gaming stuff that's unlikely to interest anybody who doesn't actually play the game. Which currently is Minecraft, but in the past has been the Mass Effect series, Myst series, and who knows what else we'll get interested in enough to post about.

Shashigai, Vlad, Spacerobots, you're on it. Anyone else want on it, just say so!
pyraxis: j-t as Sen from Spirited Away (j-t)
A pen and ink drawing of a fallen tree half-immersed in water, with rocks scattered at its base and a clump of tall wild grass behind it.
pyraxis: j-t as Sen from Spirited Away (j-t)
As requested, I made a version of the Karn forest garden with colour. It came out a lot more fairytale-like than I was envisioning. I think part of that is just the nature of coloured pencils. I only have access to an old scanner at the moment as well, so a little of the subtlety of colour was lost.

Basically the same drawing as the last one I posted, but coloured in.
pyraxis: j-t as Sen from Spirited Away (j-t)
Today's drawing of the day is for two days, yesterday and today. It's not done either because I want to add colour. Shashigai made a special request, for a drawing of the Karnese forest and the flowers you might expect to see there. It's for a story he's working on. He originally asked for a caricature, ie something simple, but I got carried away.

A pen and ink drawing of an overgrown forest with a lot of different types of plants and flowers. There are venus-flytrap-like flowers with long tongues hanging from branches. Vines creeping up the side of the tree that break open to reveal petals. Lumpy growths like a string of beads along the tops of rocks, with a flower growing out of each bead. Flowers growing from the ground like an ear of corn. Mushrooms of different shapes and sizes. A thorny bush with flowers that have long thin petals. Star-like tiny flowers sprinkling the ground and dangling from branches.
pyraxis: j-t as Sen from Spirited Away (j-t)
Nettoyeur )

Sketchdump

Apr. 7th, 2015 10:40 pm
pyraxis: j-t as Sen from Spirited Away (j-t)
It's just a little one. I'm not keeping up with a drawing every day, but it's still more art than I was doing before. I think I'm going to be reclaiming life slowly, in and around all the remaining paperwork, and even the fun chores like installing shelves and organizing storage.

We're still unpacking boxes. I've built myself a desk now, of two masonite boards which I'd once meant to cut up and prime for paintings. They're braced across stacks of boxes. I could still use them for paintings in the distant future when I get a proper desk. There are a lot of things on the agenda first, like a mattress, and maybe a washer and dryer, because the laundromat is a pretty long walk away.

Meanwhile, have a few sketches.


Read more... )
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