June 2009

Heroescon Prep

Today’s dedicated to con prep for this weekend’s HeroesCon in Charlotte, and lord, is there a lot of it.

I did most of my printing last week, so today is all jumbo prints. Then I pack up Sir Printy and my art equipment, pack a suitcase for suitable Con dress-up (Leather Saturday, vaguely Ren-Faire Sunday…Friday is set-up, and I prefer not to wear corsetry while lugging heavy objects.) transfer all the new images since last Anthrocon to my portable harddrive (unnnghgghgh….) do a water change in my fish tank and pack my car.

And buy a timer for my tank lights.


Come out to Heroescon! This may be my last year doing it–I’ll have art and Biting Pear soap and do sketchbooks and I’ll have a few (very few) Dragonbreath on me and Lord willing and the creek don’t rise, a bunch of Digger, and Endangered Ark Cards and all kinds of stuff.

Meanwhile, have some art!

Iguana Triptych

I am marginally more cheerful this afternoon, my natural ebullience having overcome my gloom. If I have a raspberry chair then so be it…I’ll paint the other three in their respective colors, and then if it’s still eating at me, I’ll repaint it.

Meanwhile, I have been amusing myself before the con with teeny tiny paintings. These are 2.5 x 1.5, inspired by some clayboard cut to that size that I picked up on a whim. I have done several phalloi (it’s not the SIZE of the phalloi that matters…) and a couple of other random things, including a few birds.

Teeny Snowy Owl
Teeny Red-Bellied Woodpecker


The color swatch of this paint looked a lot more fire-engine red in the store. I hope it dries darker, or the lighting has a serious effect, or something…or else I will have just painted a defenseless chair a really intense raspberry pink.

Nothing that another can of paint can’t fix, but the difference between perception and actual color is rather shocking…

ETA: Now I’m wondering if the lighting at Lowes, or the printing on the swatch, is to blame. I checked the swatch on-line, and while computer monitors are not terribly trustworthy, the color swatch was much lighter and much bluer than it appeared in the store, where it was darker and had notably more orange. This was supposed to be fire-engine with maybe 4% more blue, not…raspberry.

Reading through my flist today was like the hit parade of links to articles about people doing stupid things…small children flushing puppies down the toilet,* elderly Christian activists suing a library for the right to burn a book about homosexuality because exposure to it caused them lasting emotional harm, etc, etc ad nauseum.

What a world.

My faith in humanity is at a low ebb. Perhaps I will go put a coat of paint on this chair that I am repainting. Of course, it’s pouring rain, which means that it’s going to take a year to dry (I’m painting it on the front porch) but I wouldn’t have time to put a second coat on until tomorrow anyway.

*The puppy lived–it was a heroic-rescue-of-animal-in-drainpipe story. My primary takeaway is not heartwarming, however, so much as a desire to beat the children involved, and then beat the parents much, much harder, for allowing four-year-olds around a one-week-old puppy unsupervised.

Yesterday was cool, but exhausting. Went on a bookstore crawl in the Triangle, looking to see who had Dragonbreath in stock, and signing the copies when they did. We hit seven stores, and all of them had copies! It was awesome, if tiring.

Then I came home and amused myself playing Spore, which I hadn’t touched in months. Finally got to the space level, which is almost exactly like a very old game called Frontier, except with really good graphics and slightly less fiddly trading.

Next weekend, HeroesCon! I am sorta kinda ready, although I need zip ties and a new wheely-cart thing.

Also, in the last forty-eight hours, my cantaloupe plants decided to take over the WORLD. The roma tomato is bad enough–it’s decided that it’s a shrub–but the cantaloupe went from crawling along the veggie bed to making a break for the yard. I fear it.


Ads for Dragonbreath are being flogged on the Nickelodeon website…I’ve got screenshots of it wedged between the Nick logo and ads for Lunchables, as well as being the load screen on some of their games.

The marketing team at Penguin has officially blown my mind.

Today is Dragonbreath launch day!

There’s a launch party at Chapel Hill Comics on June 27th, from 1-3. Come out! Please! (You can bring kids, if you have any lying around, as this is a kid’s book and thus presumably a kid friendly event, although I don’t know if any will be there other than Kevin’s, but the option’s open.)

And I will shut up about it now, since if you’re been watching this blog, you’re probably sick of hearing about it. *grin*

Oof. Nasty nightmare that somebody had been screwing with my fish tank and left live rock scattered all over the studio. (On the other hand, it was a very large and surprisingly clean studio, not the over-cluttered maze in which I currently dwell.*) I freaked out completely, as one might expect, and was running around trying to get the rock back in water, and save all the weird little invertebrates. Crab Bob’s shell was broken open and it was generally quite horrible, and I was really screamingly furious and ready to commit murder.

This was not restful sleep. On the other hand, it’s probably a good sign in a weird sort of way—I used to have nightmares about fish dying in tanks because I had forgotten they were there/didn’t get messages I was fish-sitting/whatever** so moving from internal to external failure is progress of a sort, I guess.

In happier news, much blooming in the garden. Practically everything’s going now–coreopsis and the giant rudbeckia (which promptly fell over. Next year, plant cages on EVERYTHING. I did the whole visual-staggering thing, like they tell you do, and didn’t think that the six foot tall plants in the middle would become two-foot tall residents of the border when we got a good rain.) the butterfly bush, white native veronica, red penstemon (which is pale peach and nothing like red) the pink pepperbush and the Carolina lupine. The only hold-outs are the black-eyed susans (which may just not go this year, I suppose) the echinacea (one of which is doing great, one of which is dying, don’t ask me why) and a couple others that are going to go later in summerl. The purple-headed sneezeweed and the blue asters have flowerheads, but haven’t popped yet.

We had the first two ripe tomatoes over the weekend, which Kevin popped on mozarella with fresh basil out of the garden, drizzled with olive oil and balsamic vinegar, and voila, instant caprese. It was awesome, and I don’t even like tomatoes that much. (I like them in sauce, and in salsa, but I’m not a big fan of the texture of an intact tomato.) We’ve also been using the basil to make an approximation of pesto, although it tastes less like basil and more…green. Which is delicious in its own way, so I’m not complaining.

*Any working studio I live in will become an over-cluttered maze given time, so that’s not really a complaint. Perhaps I was just moving in.

**Oddly enough, I’m not the only person who has these dreams, although the species varies. Sometimes I get reptiles, too, despite having never kept any reptiles in my life, and when they get hungry they start eating each other. I never get mammals. (I know people who get mammals.)

In my personal lexicography of dream, frogs, however, are a good sign–I’ve had what seemed like a starving-reptile dream and been insanely grateful when I looked into the cages and found tiny green frogs, all of them alive, and the sense of relief and joy was incredible. As is usual with dreams, trying to explain all this to somebody else makes you sound like a bit of an idiot, but if you’ve had the animals-in-cages dreams, you probably know what I mean.

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