Let our president know that our country needs to support the arts again after a long dry conservative spell.

Secretary of the Arts

via scoutie girl
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Promote the President 

Last night, the mall near my apartment had a huge display in support of our new president.

sorry they are blurry - I was trying to get home and some creepy chick stopped to check out me, my camera, my bike, and what I was photographing.

this mall is at the corner of Hollywood and Highland and contains the Kodak Theater. Which very soon you will hear me rant about as Hollywood prepares for the Oscars.

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no silly - not like Star Trek!!

Like a textile designer...

Abigail Borg.

She has a lovely website and stunning patterns. She seems to work primarily with florals, which is just fine by me ;)

go have a look see!

image copied from abigail's site - all rights belong to her unless stated otherwise on her site.

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Happy Day, Mr. President! 

This is what I did at work this morning:

a nice fuzzy picture taken by my G1 of CNN with Obama being sworn in.

several of the lobbies in my building had TV's set up playing the inaugural. We had about 20 people together watching the proceedings.

I left after the poet started reciting her piece. I was not that thrilled by her work.

Very impressed with John Williams "Air and Simple Gifts" composition. I love "Simple Gifts."

happy day! we have a new president!
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I found a good new one at Crafty Chica today:

"Every worthwhile accomplishment, big or little, has its stages of drudgery and triumph; a beginning, a struggle and a victory."
- Gandhi

My absolute favorite quote is one from Bette Davis - it's attributed to "Mother Goddamn It" from 1974, but I can't find much about the source really:

"Attempt the impossible to improve your work."

I've really taken that quote to heart in my professional career and now I'm trying to put more of that thinking into my creativity.

Have a happy day!
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animegirlie as a moniker 

Here's a short story for you about the history of how I came up with the nickname, user name, moniker, pseudonym, of animegirlie.

While I have always been an admirer of all things Japanese (kimonos, tabi socks, botan rice candy, the language, cherry blossom designs, wood block prints), animegirlie really began in a small little town outside the capital of Texas when I was in high school. One of my best friends in high school was, like me, an artist. We had several classes a day together and she spent most of her time drawing cartoons in a style I hadn't seen until we met. Monica was my introduction to Japanese comics.

I loved the style she used and jumped on everything I saw that looked, even remotely, like it. I scarffed up all the anime and related paraphernalia I could find.

Speed Racer was on MTV and cartoon network, a few years later, put Sailor Moon on TV.

I kept hearing, "you look like an anime girl, you know, like on Sailor Moon." It eventually evolved to, "You look like Sailor Jupiter," as the series became more popular.

Over the next few years working crap jobs, I kept hearing it more and more.

When I finally landed a video production job, guess where it was? My second real job was at an anime company. I worked for ADV Films along with my future husband. I truly was an anime girl!! So I needed to sign up for IM and actually have a non-work related email address, so I decided that animegirlie was the perfect choice for me.

The name has stuck for years and years. I dreamed of having this domain, so that no matter what, anyone of my old friends or family could find me. All anyone has to remember is a cutesy funny name.

Animegirlie is my user name just about everywhere I have an account. I've been using this name for 10+ years - so most likely if you run into an anime girlie on the web - it's probably me.

Do you wonder why I don't talk about anime more here? I probably will, but as a professional, I was sort of soured on the industry here in the US by ADV Films, specifically. I have many, many favorite shows and could probably be persuaded to do a long "what I love about anime" post.
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Is it wrong that I'm already designing my valentines cards for my co-workers? I'm thinking a cute simple floral design that I can print, plus a heart sticker in every envelope.

any other ideas?
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best laid plans.... 

Part of our studio plan is getting reworked:

- Laid out the plans for re-arranging our entire apartment to turn our master bedroom into a studio and the spare bedroom back into a bedroom

We discovered one small hitch... The exercise equipment we have cannot be moved to the new location we choose in the apartment. The little dining area where we were planning to use has a ceiling fan. Husband and I are a little shy about messing around with electrical sockets so are remapping the apartment because we don't want to take down the fan and replace it with a different light.
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adventures with a vinyl cutter 

ok - I know this will sound weird but in our investigation of embroidery sewing machines, husband and I found that a piece of equipment we have wanted for years came down in price significantly. (do not ask how we got from embroidery machines and digitizing software to vinyl sticker cutter, I have no idea, but we did.)

It's the Roland Stika - home vinyl and decal cutter.

We got the smallest of the 3 available, at much more reasonable, largely discounted price. It was comparable to some of the scrap booking paper cutters I've seen out there.

It comes with a plug in for Illustrator that prints directly to the machine, which acts like a printer or plotter. It's sounds slow in the specs, but we have not had to wait more than a minute or 2 for a large design to finish. We are like little kids, putting stickers on everything we can think of to stick them on.

The machine came in on Friday and husband did a few test cuts to make sure it was working (it came with one scrap sheet of vinyl). Our supplies came in yesterday and we've been cutting away ever since.

First up, the Anssi chair from Ikea. I cut one of my designs out after some fiddling in Illustrator.

These are the stools for the new work room. We went yesterday and picked up two.

Second, my suitcase got a big passion flower on it this morning...

before I removed the transfer tape:

after I removed the transfer tape:

the top picture is truer to the color of the suitcase. the vinyl I used in both cases is a bright bubble gum pink.

Husband has made two cuts of our family crest (see his site, top left), one for his bike rack and one for his suit case. He also cut some logos from his favorite show, Gundam and put them on his bike and G1. My attempt to put the passion flower on my G1 was a no go, but I think it's the soft touch finish of the phone. Husband has made another attempt and we will see what happens when he wakes up.

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Painting Shadows in Adobe Illustrator 

I learned this the hard way with lots of fussing and studying of the help files, along with help from my hubby. This should help some of you skip those steps....

1. Create your drawing in illustrator with basic shapes and no stroke, but filled with a solid color

2. Chose a stroke color that will work with your drawing for the shadow color
3. Make sure the color you want is in the stroke color selection box and that no fill color is indicated

4. Pick your paint brush from the tools menu

5. Draw a line overlapping your object

6. Select the original object to see how the stroke you painted will look on the object

7. If you like it, copy the main object (ctrl+c) and paste the object in front (ctrl+f)
8. This will not place our object above the stroke, only in front of the original object.
9. Right click and chose arrange -> move to front

10. Your object should still be selected.
11. Hold the shift key and select your stroke (or strokes) - you must select the object first THEN the strokes

12. Right click and select “make clipping mask”

13. You should see your original object with the stroke placed over it, but no stroke overlapping the edge of your object.

14. Repeat for each object in your drawing until items you want shaded are complete.

I have had issues with the stroke being changed to “no stroke” after making the clipping mask. Before you proceed to the next object, make sure your stroke is the correct color and there is no fill.

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