I’m on the job hunt, which means I’ve been working on my portfolio. I’ve had a certain story on my mind for a long time–a nursery WWII story, about a Jewish mother who helps her son escape WWII by building a golem out of flower pots. At last I’ve had the chance to make it!
As I’m showing it around for feedback, I’m running into a problem–not a lot of people know what a golem is. (A golem is a mud creature from Jewish folklore–you can make it come to life by writing the Hebrew word “Truth” on its forehead.)
If you watch it:
- Thank you! I’m honored you would spend your time on it ^_^
- Do you know what a golem is? If not, does that affect how much you enjoy the piece?
It was a lot of fun to create. It makes want to have a bunch of pots of yellow tulips :)
PS “Gele Tulpin” means “Yellow Tulips” in Dutch.
Last Friday I was out driving late. Really late. 9:30 or so, no one should be driving after 9:00, that’s way too late to be out. Maniacs.
I was almost home and stopped at a stoplight and couldn’t stop staring at the car in front of me
I suddenly seemed to notice how much
it’s tail light looked like Nicolas Cage.
I am legit not making this up. It seriously did.
And then suddenly EVERYTHING about the car looked like Nicolas Cage
And I was like
And I realized about then that I should probably get some sleep.
(So I did.)
The next morning, I looked back on that moment and realized that I’d had a spiritual experience. You know, like in the same way people see angels in their coffee bubbles or Elvis in their driveway stains. For me, it was Nicolas Cage in a tail light.
I like to think that maybe I have Nicolas Cage watching over me.
And I find that very comforting.
WINNERS WINNERS CHICKENS DINNERS!
Congrats to Karol Knight, David Darcey, and Bekah! You guys won last week’s Cinderella print! *kazoos* Only use the print for GOOD, not evil. Feed little orphans with it or somfin ^_^
You might not know this, but there are dozens of horrible, terrible, villainous little creatures living in your house.
No, not your kids…(nice thought, though.) Chances are, you’ve never seen these little monsters. But they’re around you. All around you. Every day. All day.
There’s one above you right now.
Don’t panic. I know of ways to get rid of them. I’ve put together a list…a list of 6 of ’em that torment your life daily. And, I tell you how to get rid of them. As they say, knowing is half the battle!
1. The Camera Phone Gnome (Pernicium Picturus)
This is a little gnome that lives inside your phone. He’s about the size of a grain of rice. He wears a little red hat and matching leggings that he hasn’t washed in years.
(He lives up by the camera lens.)
Anyway. Every time you see something beautiful–like the way light glistens on a pool, or the full moon last Friday–you want to take a picture, right?
Somewhere, between the lens and the microchips of the camera, the Camera Gnome interferes.
And your picture turns out super crummy.
Happens every time.
Prevention/Cure: Take a billion pictures of every meal you eat. Cold cereal, toast, everything.
This won’t actually get rid of the Gnome…it just gets even with it.
2. The Art Repulser (Malus Artem Criticus)
This little guy lives at the bottom of your garbage can. He wears a vest and is smelly. He kind of looks like Captain Picard.
Mostly he just minds his own business, until
Your kid gives you a piece of artwork they drew themselves
and of course you’re crazy about it, because you’re a good parent
which unfortunately causes the kid to draw a billion more pictures of the exact same thing
(I was this kid so I feel justified in making fun of it)
Eventually you can’t see your fridge anymore.
You get tired of the clutter and when your kid isn’t looking…
You throw it all out but are very careful to make sure you stuff it down LOW in the garbage can because the last thing your kid needs to know is that you threw away their beautiful artwork!
Of course, the Art Repulser is having none of that.
The next time your kid goes to throw something away…
You’re a terrible parent. You’re the worst.
Don’t worry…your kid never throws anything away, so you should be fine.
Prevention/Cure: Encourage your child to become an accountant.
3. The Thought Suckers (Cogitari Vacuumus)
Your house is infested with these creatures. Your living room might look like a normal living room
But really, there are about a hundred of these things hanging from the ceiling. (They’re invisible)
They have giant, blank eyes (about the size of ping pong balls) and “O”-shaped mouths that suck like a vaccuum.
Every day, they wait for someone to enter their lair with intent.
Why was I down here again?
Prevention/Cure: Stop having worthwhile thoughts.
4. The Printer Demon (Terrore Satietus)
This one is about the size of a folded Eggo waffle and it lives inside your printer.
It mostly drinks your printing toner. (That’s why it runs out so fast.)
But it feeds on your panic.
The printer demon is the reason why the printer never works before your assignment is due.
Prevention/Cure: Sadly, there’s nothing you can do about this guy. He comes manufactured with the printer.
5. The Fire Alarm Fairies (Fumi Quiritors)
Evil fairies live inside your fire alarms.
They mostly just sit there getting drunk
Until you decide to cook something
Then they go crazy.
Their shrill little voices are the worst.
Of course, it sets off the other Fire Alarm Fairies in your house
And it just escalates until the neighbors call the fire department because they think you’re trying to burn the unit down.
Prevention/Cure: You’ll need to make an offering of an unused, pure white 600 thread count pillowcase. Shake it at the fire alarm 5,034 times in obeisance. That’s the only way to appease them.
And, last of all, the worst, most nefarious creature of them all:
6. The Produce Guy At The Grocery Store (Frutus Congestus)
Heh heh heh…
There is a special place in not-heaven for that guy.
Every year I tell myself: I’m going to do more speedpaints.
Speedpaints are the tomatoes of the artist’s palette. They are useful, healthy, and good to have.
But no one says that a tomato is their favorite food…do they.
Every year, I make a goal to do more speedpaints because they are good for you. And every year…I fail at it.
ME2015: Ok I’m going to do like, a ton of speedpaints this year. I can’t wait!
Me2016: Ok but THIS year I’m TOTALLY doing a billion speedpaints. I mean it! REALLY THIS TIME!!
Me2017: If I don’t do more speedpaints this year, I will punish myself by slashing tires.
Slashing tires takes a lot of upper body strength, plus you have to deal with the angry neighbors after, so. I think it’s a good punishment.
2017: This is going to be an interesting year for you.
Anyway, here’s a bunch of the 30-minute speedpaints I did this year…condensed to seconds, all for your viewing enjoyment.
Also, reminder: New Dixon Drawing Class up! You can find it here.
Boy am I ready for this year to be over.
2016 has been lame. Real lame. Everyone I know agrees that this year has been a PDC* year.
*PDC = Pretty Darn Crummy
G’bye, stupid year.
For me, I lost my job which is fine but I also lost my sister, which was not fine.
(Last week I was visiting a friend, and her husband mentioned):
And I was like:
Frankly I don’t know how old people do it. Everybody they know is dying all the time. That has to be the worst. How do you do it, old people???!?!?
I think it’s because old people have had really hard lives. They essentially grew up selling matches in alleyways like this:
And that gives you GRIT.
If you don’t believe me…ask your grandma or grandpa what their Christmas was like. They’ll tell you. Oh, they will tell you, and suddenly you’ll feel like a PBW*.
*Pretty Big Whiner
All I had to do was ask my coworkers about their grandparents’ Christmas. Bryan told me his.
So Bryan’s grandpa grew up in New York, poor. Real poor. They were in fact so poor, they couldn’t afford a Christmas tree one year.
But they did have a green chair.
So they put the chair in a corner and decorated it.
(This kind of puts the Charlie Brown Christmas tree to shame, right? Not even a little love is going to make this less pathetic.)
My other coworker (also named Bryan, we call him “Other Bryan”) had a story about his grandpa, too.
This isn’t even a joke.
Bryan’s great-grandfather worked in East Tennessee, in the coal railyards. In the late ’30s/early ’40s, work was pretty scarce because a lot of the coal miners were on strike, so money was super tight for their family.
But then the war happened and coal was in high demand, and his great-grandfather worked extra shifts and overtime, getting the coal moving.
Now his great-grandfather had been a warm, kind man until his 12-year-old daughter had died of meningitis, and that kind of changed him. He was cranky and mean for the rest of his life. His kids used to climb trees to avoid him.
But that year, 1942, Bryan’s grandpa wouldn’t let his dad’s crabbiness get to him because he knew that his dad had been working extra, and had $50 dollars. A fortune back then! He knew this Christmas was going to be…swell.
…Until he discovered that his father spent the entire $50 dollars on garden fertilizer from a man named B.S. Bradley.
(I’ll let you guess what the B.S. stands for. Heh heh.)
For the rest of his life, Bryan’s grandpa would tell everyone how he only got a giant pile of poo for Christmas.
That’s not exactly the whole story.
After asking other relatives, and even looking up the East Tennessee census, Bryan discovered that B.S. Bradley had been unemployed for a while. He and his five little kids lived in a tiny home with broken windows, which they boarded up every winter to keep the freezing wind out. His great-grandfather was adamant about getting the fertilizer before Christmas.
So I guess his great-grandfather still did have a warm heart.
(Apparently their garden that next year was pretty awesome, too.)
Here’s one from my own family.
My mom grew up PDP*. Her dad had type I diabetes and was often sick. Her mom–who had never graduated high school–raised 9 kids while working any job she could to support a family.
*Pretty Darn Poor
(And my grandma is a HARD WORKER. She does not slow down…I want to be like her one day.)
My mom said it would get so cold in the house, she would sometimes lie in bed and blow out to see her breath.
She also remembered how my grandma would cry, after collectors called. (And they were always calling.)
They had it rough.
But there was a family who lived up Spanish Fork canyon, the Pratt’s, who had it even rougher than my mom’s family.
They had thirteen kids and the dad had been out of work for a while, and they had nothing. There was no way they’d be able to have Christmas that year.
My mom’s family, the Boekweg’s, showed up at their door. Each of their kids had a small wrapped present for every one of the Pratt kids.
Somehow my grandma had manage to scrape together enough money to give a Christmas to the Pratt’s. It probably meant her own family would be without Christmas. But they gave it anyway.
I only know this story because when I lived in Orem, I ended up in the same ward as Sister Pratt! She told me–with tears in her eyes–how much that meant to her, even years later.
I guess that explains why my mom is the most selfless person I know!
We’re pretty spoiled.
I guess I can’t be too down on 2016. I sit in my warm house and look at my tree, think about my cupboards full of food, the clothes I have, my friends and family, and I feel PDG.
(Pretty Darn Grateful)
Congratulations to the Nutcracker winners! (And thank you, everyone, for your kind comments! I know I’m lame at responding, but I read every single one of them and feel honored :)
The winners are: Charissa, Bill Giles, and Janet! WOOOO!! Congratulations, guys! I’ll be sending you your Nutcracker prints right away!
Have you guys seen Moana yet? Did you love it??
I did. I watched it and I BAWLED. Wasn’t it so good?
(Admittedly, I’m biased. I was story lead on the Disney Infinity Moana playset!)
Aren’t they so cute? AREN’T THEY???
There were a lot of great experiences I had while working on the playset, but one of them was flying out to Burbank and working with Ron Clements and John Musker, the directors of the movie.
The cool thing about this–for me–was that when I was a kid the movie “Hercules” came out and I loved it so much I became obsessed which some of you jr. high & high school friends reading this might have remembered and is a detail we don’t need to go into
Except to say that my parents gave me an “Art of Hercules” book and in there I learned all about the directors Ron Clements and John Musker and found out what storyboarding was…and I resolved then and there I’d become a storyboard artist when I grew up and one day work with these directors (and I’m not just saying that–I really did.)
So when they walked into our first meeting I was like
I played it “cool” though and I’m sure they didn’t even notice me
Anyway, that was the first of a series of meetings and story development on a great, fun game.
You might be wondering, “I haven’t seen any of the Moana game figures or anything!”
You’d be right. Just when we were about to record the cinematics audio…everyone in the studio was brought together, and told that we were shutting down and to pack up our stuff and move on. Disney Infinity was cancelled.
It wasn’t a great moment but
✧･: *✧･:* That’s the Biz! *:･✧*･:✧
Even though the game was cancelled (and it was an AWESOME game, StudioGobo (the studio we were contracting with) was really making some beautiful stuff)…I’m still really grateful I had a chance to work on it. On to the next big adventure ^_^
Here’s the intro animatic I created for the game, which was a fun challenge–we had to keep it short & low on assets for live render purposes. We had the idea of telling the intro narration on a tapa cloth tapestry, which would then be created in 3D to look flat and textured. Needless to say, it was gnarly fun and I’m glad I can now share it.
My beauty products have been threatening to take over the bathroom
and I NEED every single one of them
so I broke my vow of buying self-assembly furniture and bought self-assembly furniture
It worked ok I guess until I had it all together over my toilet but it was awfully unstable and the instructions said to screw it into the wall and I DID but the screw only went in halfway and then just kept twisting and twisting and went nowhere
And that was a problem because I KNEW it was going to fall on me while I was going to the bathroom and even more embarrassing than someone finding my skeleton half-naked was that they’d also find out what I’d been reading
So I turned to the Savior of the Housewife, the Feminine Version of Duct Tape
HOT GLUE BABY
I use hot glue for pretty much everything
It works great
I slathered that screw in loads of hot glue
And not only does that rhyme BUT the hot glue did the trick so I win double here
Fast forward a few months
when I was bragging to a coworker about my ingenuity
And he just kind of looked at me and said:
Apparently the reason the screw did not screw in all the way was because I needed to screw it into a stud, which is a giant beam behind the wall which you can’t find unless you have something called a “studfinder” which is like $7 on Amazon and who in the world has money for that especially if the cabinet hasn’t fallen on you yet
Which I began explaining to my parents last week
And we were like
My mom is a hot glue MAVEN and if you ever meet her you should ask about her collection of hot glue guns, it’s pretty impressive
Also this blog post is just one giant run-on sentence
Halloween was last Monday. Did you guys have a good time? Did you dress up?? Did you get lots of candy??? Do you want to give me all that candy????
Asking for a friend.
When I was a kid, man. I totally owned that candy thing. We’d grab our pillow cases (this was in the days before trick-or-treat bags were invented) and trudge through 3 feet of snow to get candy.
(Back then, it always snowed three feet the day before Halloween. Also, the houses were farther apart. A lot farther apart. Like, several miles. And they only gave out tiny candies, like tootsie rolls and dum-dums. Kids today, they don’t know how good they have it. (*grumblegrumbleTrunkorTreatgrumblegrumble*))
In this picture, I’m wearing a crayon costume. (My costume in 1st grade.) It was legit. I wish they made that costume for grown-ups.
When we couldn’t walk anymore because our feet had frozen into blocks of ice, we’d drag our corpses home, our pillowcases laden–laden, I say–with our hard-earned candy. The moment we walked in the door, Mom would be there with…the Bowl.
And do you know what she would do??
Do you know what she would do????
She would make us ALL pour our hard-earned candy into that bowl!
It was like having your arm torn off! But with more blood and tears!
And then, she would put that bowl of communal candy faaaaar out of reach, on top of the fridge.
OMGsh, it was the worst. I’m still getting a little teary-eyed, thinking about it.
We did get a couple pieces of candy a day. If we finished with all our homework, did our daily jobs, practiced our music (both instruments), and sewed dresses for our stepsisters’ ball, Mom let us grab a chair, reeeach to the top of the fridge, and fish around in that beautiful, beautiful treasure trove of a bowl.
Weirdly enough, the bowl of candy seemed to get lower and lower every day. A lot lower. We couldn’t figure out where all that candy was going to.
Around the second week of November, the bowl would mysteriously disappear.
ME: YOU WHAT???!?!?!
MOM: Wasn’t it awful, having that junk food around the house all day?
ME: No! It wasn’t awful! It was wonderful!!! I loved having that junk food around the house all day! I’m not even around the house all day! I’m at school! How could you throw it away???!?!?
MOM: If you keep complaining like this, I’m going to make you sing the Happy Song.
ME: But that was MY CANDY!!
MOM: When you start paying the light bill, we’ll talk about what’s yours around here.
And that was that.
You might wonder why I’m so against Communism. It’s because I LIVED IT EVERY YEAR AND IT WAS AWFUL.
Seriously. You kids have no idea.
Fast forward fifty years or so. My mom doesn’t do that anymore, because now we’re too old to go trick-or-treating. But she does have a huge party at the house, where everyone dresses up and eats chili and the nieces and nephews go out trick-or-treating, where the neighbors, of course, hand out donuts and full-sized candy-bars and some even hand out bags of candy (I am not making this up) and toothbrushes but only sometimes on the toothbrushes, because the kids somehow “miss” going to the neighborhood dentist’s house every year. But seriously, my mom’s neighborhood is Candyland.
The best part about this? They come back to the house after. Loaded with candy.
Some aunts like to spoil their nieces and nephews.
And some aunts expect their nieces and nephews to spoil them.
I’ll let you guess which aunt I am.
Hiiiii kiddssssss….whatja get????
Those kids are gettin’ wise.
After the great candy letting, we all sit down to watch a movie. I say “all”, but this year it was just me and my little sister, Emily. It’s a good thing too, because we were watching….this.
Have you seen this? You obviously haven’t, because in the past 50 years, you’ve gone outside. Trust me, this movie’s enough to make you go Headless Chicken the next time you see a bird.
It is absolutely freaky.
…Except for the first hour and a half (it felt like 5 hours) where the characters, dressed in fabulous ’60’s outfits, sit in various trendily-decorated locations, smoking real cool-like and talking for ages about stuff that no one cares about, like their ex-flame’s mother, the exact way to drive across town, and what the stock prices for bird cages in San Francisco are.
No one cares about your stupid boyfriend!
And then suddenly…
CAW CAW CAW CAW CAW CAW CAW CAW CAW!!!!
The audience is treated to horrific scenes of birds EATING PEOPLE!
Scenes that don’t even make sense! Like, they’re inside a schoolhouse, and they notice a whole lot of birds perching on the playground equipment. So you’d think, hm. Maybe we should stay inside for a while, since the birds have been attacking people.
NOPE. They send the kids OUTSIDE to go HOME.
Well of course they get massacred!
(You can watch the actual movie clip here, but I only suggest doing it if you don’t care about all the nightmares you’re gonna get.)
Like I said, it doesn’t make sense. The whole movie doesn’t make sense. It’s just like…horror donuts. There’s no nutritional value except for the parts where the birds eat everyone. It’s awful. And so, so wonderful. Emily was horrified. (She hasn’t seen it before.)
The next morning, we didn’t go running. We couldn’t.
Birds are out there, which is why I haven’t left my house in a week. I’m writing this from inside my couch. Hopefully my work understands why I haven’t shown up. There’s no way I’m going outside ever again.