Saturday, June 19, 2010

The Devil is the boogie man, by the way


These are all over Manhattan. The poster has improved his glue application of late, but I have a handful of these.

Posted by David Rhoden on 06/19 at 02:38 PM

Flash, Wacom tablets, and long-deferred dream jobs

When I was in law school, one of my teachers asked us to introduce ourselves to the class by stating our name, undergrad major, and our dream job. The other students mostly said law-related dream jobs, but when it came to me I said “animator”.
I don’t know where it came from. I’d never explicitly thought about it, actually. But I knew it was true as soon as I said it.
That said, it’s my *dream* job—in reality, you need a pretty great support system or a huge measure of genius or talent to be able to give animation the time it requires.
(The same thing is somewhat true of law school, come to think of it.)
Anyway, I never got to be an animator outside of tiny personal projects, but I haven’t forgotten I said it.

Today I spent a little time with Adobe Flash. It’s a very good program for animators despite the lack of support on iPhone and the like, and I’ve always wanted to use it as a drawing tool, but I didn’t like the way it “smooths” your drawings.
The art just didn’t look like I wanted it to. Combined with the awkwardness of an unpracticed hand and a Wacom tablet, the results were just unsatisfactory.
But today I discovered some preferences* that let you take off the smoothing and just get your own drawing more or less.
It sort of exaggerates the shakiness of my line, but I’m excited to play with it some.
The illustrations on this post are little quick walk cycles I drew today. Messy but I feel like posting them; it’s what I intended this blog for anyway.

* Open up Flash and look in “Preferences”! There’s also a Smoothing control on the Brush tool that you can change per stroke.

Posted by David Rhoden on 06/19 at 01:50 AM

Friday, June 18, 2010

this band has more going on than I thought

I know all the big hits and don’t even hate them, and I heard a bit of their back catalog and was surprised that, considering it’s bubblegum, it is pretty listenable to my increasingly jaded ears.

But I wasn’t prepared for this.

Proto-punk blues, with awesome lyrics about the difficulties of…wearing glasses. It’s like a Captain Beefheart song.

The Lovin’ Spoonful, “Four Eyes”

Posted by David Rhoden on 06/18 at 01:11 AM

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Instapaper and the Readability plug-in from Arc90: usability and design tool?

I get a lot of links to content through my Twitter and Facebook streams but I try not to stop what I’m doing to read them all. I like to save them using Instapaper so I can read them on the iPhone if I happen to be underground. Something that makes this work even better is the Readability firefox plug-in from Arc90. All it does (and it does a lot) is figure out what the main story on the page is, and throws everything else out, or hides it, at any rate, Instapaper no longer sees the sidebars and ads and stuff.
One interesting side note is that often the design, or anti-design, that results from using the plug-in looks better than the designed web page. As the excellent user-experience site UX Hero points out, if your design looks better when re-rendered by a plug-in like this (with minimal styling) maybe it’s time to go back to the drawing board. I should probably try this out on my own site.
Anyway, this is how I find I’m reading content these days: with less styling, not more.

Posted by David Rhoden on 06/16 at 07:22 PM

Bushwick Highlights: Irving Avenue, 2010

A drunk sounding man is doing a dramatic recitation of “Hello” by Lionel Richie on Irving Avenue In Bushwick. I really think bullets are about to fly.

Posted by David Rhoden on 06/16 at 04:14 AM
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