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Friday’s sketchbook review…

This week Nov 16th – 22nd, 2013

I got a lot done this week. I will do a break down of the water color set soon. Water color set (Lego’s inside a Altoids case), water reservoir brush, ink reservoir brush, pink highlighter, and a white color pencil. I think there was also a red fine roller ball, a green highlighter and a purple sharpie.IMG_3589

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Now on Amazon, (I hope this works?)

I have put a painting on Amazon. I will tell you the process what a bit ruff but after reading that, “Some categories doesn’t require codes, If your items fit into one of the Non-Matching categories you can list without codes: Everything Else, Collectibles, Jewelry, Beauty, and Personal Care”. On this website. I was ready to try again.

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I will be adding more as I make time to shoot and add them. Wish me luck.

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Friday’s sketchbook review…

This week past 16 years, February 1997 – Nov 15th 2013.

I have worked on this sketchbook, on and off. It was started out as a journal for my lizard. In 1997 I bought a tiny lizard from a street peddler and named it “Frog”. I continued working on the book long after I let the lizard go but ‘Frog’ continued to be a source of inspiration. I would use this book whenever the ‘Frog’  inspiration hit.

This was never my main sketchbook, I picked it up and worked on it from time to time. 84 pages, divided by 16 years gives you… 5.25 pages each year. I hope you like it.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbook The cover: Franky gave me that Beastie Boys sticker in 1995. The lobster label ‘MAINE’ came from a trade show I went to while working for a company called ‘Eton’. Notice the “BINDING GUARANTEED FOR 10 YEARS, PATENT #4106,148”. The book was published in 1977, so when I got hold of it my 10 years was up :).Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbook Warming up page 1, I gessoed these pages then the crinkled and tore so I skipped over them, they were good enough for Evan, work friends, cell phone.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbook This is where I started keeping a record and writing about “Frog”.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookI bought another lizard thinking “Frog” needed a pal, mistake, “Frog” didn’t like the idea.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookApple bits are not a favorite, and “Elroy” (the new lizard) looks sick. ‘Frog’ has taken a shine to my roommate, I think he is in love.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookFrog and Elroy, Oh how I wanted to like those animals, but lizards are not cuddly, and can be nasty buttholes.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookFrog doesn’t like Elroy at all.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookElroy has escaped, I hope him the best.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookI started thinking how Elroy’s life on the run would be. Attempts at jokes while looking for Elroy.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookSheriff Esther, If she didn’t eat Elroy… maybe she was going to find him. Maybe she did.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookElroy at the Bar, he has found his people, I wish him the best.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookElroy is still missing maybe he is having a good time.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookElroy is missing while I chop greens for frog… where’s Elroy?

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookMaybe Elroy was kidnapped by flies?

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookFrog is a 32″ monster and he is starting to make me crazy. Roommate finds a very large lizard swimming in her tub “Not cool man, Not cool!”.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookOther lizard found in the yard. long story short, Sheriff Esther did eat it.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookFrog The Lizard has been set free. That lizards whipping tail, shedding nails and spitting hisses will not be missed.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookEton, a trade show, I brought this book with me on a whim. It has spent years sitting on a shelf at this point.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookFrom 1997 to 2002, from Florida to Atlanta to Chicago. I’m still able to pick up this book and work, all I have to say is “Wow”.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookMore Chicago, a long drive, and some great art.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookIt’s a lot of blah, blah, blah, two pages stuck together, ripped and written on. Page 40 and 41.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookJust a strange yellow rabbit thing, this might have been in Chicago.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookThis book goes to Mexico. Road trip with Amanda to texas, I think we went to to see the Old 97’s

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookWorking with Blue acrylic, pen and a white marker.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookFull color paint pens and the narrative about Elroy continues.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookRunning with the Lizards (rock music in the background).

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookI think at this point I have been prepping pages ahead of time, What a innovation? Before this I would white out a page then work on it.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookThe prepping pays off these next couple of pages look good, but I find out that gloss medium acrylic will still seal shut. It encased a few really cool drawings.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbook Jazz band, this is the bleed through on a page spread that was encased, I was able to finish it on the reverse.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookThese pages squished together, I ripped them apart and made this.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookFun with lizard flaps and dresses.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookNow for some red, black and white. This was a thing for a while.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookI rode the train to work (downtown Atl). I would try to work on a spread a little each day during the commute.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookMost days I didn’t fall asleep.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookNice buildings, The page texture is rough I tried using rollers to put down a white wash. I lost my pen and couldn’t get back into this one.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookThis one was fun, lots of bits and pieces going on.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbook

Coffee cup raft floating in a sea of pink. I’m preparing the pages with red now.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookJuly 2013, is this the future. What am I doing here.

I have a small tube of acrylic white and red, a small brush, water bottle (for painting) and an ink fountain brush in my bag.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookRed white and black, the new ink brush is making this fun. Pages 76 and 77. I made some stencils.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookFun with Ink pen, Making a neat lizard! Pages 78 and 79. Something to be said about keeping it simple.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbookMore red, black and white, Count the Lizards on my head.

Alex Feliciano's "all about lizards" sketchbook1 small tube of Cadmium Red acrylic.
1 small tube of Titanium White.
1 tiny bottle of water.
1 brush (cut to fit just inside the bottle).
1 black fountain ink pen.

And this is where we stop for now. Page 86 and 87, 41 more pages to go. Thank you for looking and sharing.

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Plein air painting, NC

I was able to squeak out a one good one.

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Friday’s sketchbook review…

This week Nov 2nd – 8th, 2013

It have been a busy week, sent the “Dog Head” to The Hive Gallery in Los angeles, started nocturna (nighttime)l plein air painting, and corresponding with some great nocturna painters.

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I think i will paint this one, It’s kind reminds me of “red princess” (for context I’ve added “red princess” to this post).

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1999, “Red Princess”, by Alex Feliciano

 

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Plein air painting.

Ok, night two

I painted in front of the CVS near my home. A slight change of palette, I added a lemon yellow, sap green, and burnt umber. That gives me seven colors!

  • Cadmium red deep
  • Windsor blue
  • Cadmium yellow deep
  • Titanium white
  • Lemon yellow
  • Sap green
  • Burnt umber.

The extra colors worked out great, I have a lot(!) more work to do and will not put off working on my palette anymore. Try new things. I am thinking about picking a subject less lit, all the street lights are muting the over all ‘nighttime’ feel. As you can imagine I’m painting by street lamp, lots of dim yellow light (see below). I would like more ‘nighttime’ in my paintings, I don’t have any real idea how to do this, I’m going to just try lot of stuff. I would love to hear from anyone who has painted at night (Update below). How do you see your pallets, colors on the canvas, keep eye from “flash blindness” or light from polluting your subject matter? 20131107-093608 (1)

(Below) you can get a sense of the lighting and what colors I can see (The photo is not far off). One unforeseen bonus to all the grey yellow is allowing me to concentrate on tonality and form.

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UPDATE: I got an email from Mara.

  1. Mara suggested I google around and sent me a link, in the comment section was this link, and it address a lot of issues I have found.
  2. “I liked this quote, ‘in the dark all cats are gray’“.
  3. Mara suggest using black,( I have never successfully painted with black but, time to try new things).
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Why am I doing plein (open) air paintings.

I just started a new initiative to paint plein air every night, as long as it doesn’t get below 50. Below are the three reasons I have started.

  1. A quote on Banksy’s website by Paul Cézanne made me think. On the website it’s quoted as;  “All pictures painted inside, in the studio, will never be as good as those done outside.” A full(er) quote from Paul Cézanne:”But you know all pictures painted inside, in the studio, will never be as good as those done outside. When out-of-door scenes are represented, the contrasts between the figures and the ground is astounding and the landscape is magnificent. I see some superb things and I shall have to make up my mind only to do things out-of-doors.”– letter to Emile Zola, 19 October 1866.
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  2. I stumble across Mara Korkola paintings while on booooooom.com, I was immediately humbled and awed. I will be checking in with Mara from time to time.
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  3. Bob Gross, Not to be confused with the “happy little tree” guy, Bob was my watercolor instructor during the early 90’s. He had us [Juan and myself] up at 6 am to paint trees in Tree Tops Park I don’t think I would have ever been admitted into art school if it wasn’t for the work I did during that summer. Thanks Bob!bob_self_portrait_gl9a
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plein air painting

Day one Night one, it was cold and fun to be out side painting again. A police officer in a cruiser stopped bye, “just to take a look”, he was very nice. I didn’t stray far, I was on foot with my bag and  board. I will be doing this as long as the weather stays above 50.

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JUVENILE BUTT ROCKETS, artist I don’t know.

This is one of those things you come across and unless you see them in mass can’t truly appreciate them, please visit JUVENILE BUTT ROCKETS‘ tumblr account, it is good for the soul. I found them on a comment post from another one of my favorite blogs,  The Jealous Curator.

THE ILLUSION THAT INSPIRED ROSALYN BUTT ROCKET
THE ILLUSION THAT INSPIRED ROSALYN BUTT ROCKET
A CZECH RASTA IN THE BEER GARDEN BUTT ROCKET
A CZECH RASTA IN THE BEER GARDEN BUTT ROCKET

 

 

 

 

 

 

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A look at the save button icon (3.24 floppy disk).

The Save icon and what it means.

I have mixed feelings about whether to use an icon or a button with the word “save” on it. I didn’t think about touching this issue in a meaning full way until I read this article from PJ Onori on Branch.com. On one hand you have the word “save” and you can change it for different nuances. Like “archive”, “done”, “save draft”, “post” and more. The words are nice and clear. I only down side is having to translate them for international use. The 3.5 floppy disk has been the standard icon for a long time.

Screen Shot 2013-11-05 at 10.14.32 AM To be obtuse… “Save to a 3.5 floppy disk I don’t think this computer even has one?”.

Now the icon a shinning champion of group think. When you see the 3.5 floppy icon in the menu bar you know that you will be saving. That is the intent and has remained the default for decades, the latest “MS word” still shows a 3.5 floppy disk as “save”. The big question is does the 3.5 disk become an abstract icon that transcends it original meaning and become a symbol for “save”, or does this icon need an update. I think that I have found a few examples. Here are some designers who are thinking about this and are reacting to recent changes in the “Save/store” paradigm and I would like to share them with you, they are in no particular order, enjoy.

 

Save Icons by Máximo Gavete
Save Icons by Máximo Gavete

Màximo is using a minimalistic skeuomorph design to represent an inbox. The inbox is so removed (from the world of bytes and data) that it becomes abstract container for the arrow. But it is the arrows that are driving the meaning. The theme of in/out/ok are a common in these designs.

 

Save Icons by Justin Nurse
Save Icons by Justin Nurse

Justin has updated his storage device from the 3.5 to a hard drive. This updates the 3.5 floppy, but it doesn’t create a lasting metaphor. It will or may already becomes a victim of out dating. The arrow drive the action, they say, “To Here”.

 

Save Icon Redesign Concept by Joni Marttinen
Save Icon Redesign Concept by Joni Marttinen

I really like what Joni is trying to do here, almost there. The first two icons provide some nice feedback to the user. The last two are fine but the whole set gets dragged down when we get to “Open file”. It feels like Joni got tired at the end.

 

Save Piggy Bank by Jordan Jung
Save Piggy Bank by Jordan Jung

This was added tongue and cheek but it could have legs. It is a safe and says, “your files are safe”.

 

A new Save icon by Idan Arbesman
A new Save icon by Idan Arbesman

Unfortunately without the word “SAVE” the icon fails. With the word “SAVE” the icon is just a graphic.

 

Rebound - Floppy Disk Boycott by Jesse Wallace
Rebound – Floppy Disk Boycott by Jesse Wallace

Ha! This will show that 3.5 floppy disk what a real floppy disk is. This skeuomorph disk is again so far removed from present day saving techniques that we can considerate  it an abstraction of the save idea. Some would say, “No one will know what it means”. I can’t disagree with that, but the historical significance does lend it an air of authority.

 

Keep button by Jas Jassal
Keep button by Jas Jassal

This is where words win over icons, the subtlety of the meaning can be expressed. A second win for colors. Although I’m not feeling the archive icon.

 

Energizer by Artission
Energizer by Artission

This one one stood out because it’s using a lock instead of and arrow to show “your changes are secured”, kinda like the safe it makes a strong statment. Albeit this was not Artission’s intent,  I submit it to you as a counter to the arrow.

 

Save Icon Concept by Adam Hunter Peck
Save Icon Concept by Adam Hunter Peck

More Arrows, Adam is using the arrow most successfully to show where your data goes, “It goes somewhere (map/directional arrow), and it’s safe (three walls/container)”. Artfully done.

 

Save Changes by Chris Armstrong
Save Changes by Chris Armstrong

Very similar to Jas (above), but Chris is talking to the feedback loop users enjoy.

 

Save Icon by Maximilian Larsson
Save Icon by Maximilian Larsson

I have seen this icon a lot and I think it’s good try, but does take the user into account. Please compare this one to Adam’s continuous arrow ( 2 up). Maximilian is showing two lines converging into a single point, or maybe the thought was a deposit into a persistent timeline. This icon might be better suited to version control where merging is often done or FB’s add to timeline.

 

Rethinking the save symbol  by Sanid Jusić
Rethinking the save symbol by Sanid Jusić

This is a very nice take on the feedback idea, The icon is a bit vague but one could learn to like it.

 

CodePen Icons by Josh Puckett
CodePen Icons by Josh Puckett

4. The double fork for forking and or branching easy to understand,
5. The floppy for save is the classic we are talking about in this post and in context works well
6. The export also easy to understand.
It is the context that matters here. If i just had a save button I wouldn’t be sure how it was going to act with the other icons I can make the leap and understand what to expect.
PS I love CODEPEN

 

Save Icon Set by Tyler Murphy
Save Icon Set by Tyler Murphy

Tyler is using the arrow to show “where to”. It’s the “where to” that we are addressing, with the 3.5 floppy, if the technology changes does the icon change.

 

Save icon by Ramotion
Save icon by Ramotion

Now we are talking skeuomorphism! Ramotion is cramming an entire story into his icon. If this is the route you take, An entire icon language could be created to solve the subtleties of the “Save” event. I think this also opens the question, “What is save?” and “How do we want to depict it”. I am sure Ramotion would have a lot to say about it.

I would like to put Josh Puckett and Ramotion in a room and have them work something out.

 

Save icon by Máximo Gavete
Save icon by Máximo Gavete

Màximo is visiting the area of user feed back, the Icon is still a bit vague, but i like the direction.

 

closing thoughts…

  • Should the icon be reflexive and give feedback to the user?
  • What is the expectation of the feedback (savable, saving, save complete or error statement)?
  • Should the icon be a universal, and the context dictated it’s meaning?
  • Should an icon set be created to address the language of save (save it, version it, archive it, cloud upload, local storage, shared file editing, fork, branch, merge, done for now…).
  • What is the intent  (local-document: create/open, local-document: edit/write, and then local-document: save).
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Friday’s sketchbook review…

 

This week Oct 26th – Nov 1st, 2013

last page of sketchbook, time to go shopping.IMG_2990

 

 

First page new book…20131101-120614.jpgFinished the previous book this week. Above is the first page of new sketchbook, This book is a 4×6 ish moleskins, I have also picked out a new pen, marker and pencil palette, see below.

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You might have guessed that I use a limited palette. Every week I switch up what I use. I will be documenting the palette for each week from now on. Got any advice or questions? leave a comment.