Archive for November 8th, 2017

A Smart Christmas Gift for the Digital Artist and Web Designer!

Posted on November 08, 2017 by in Business | Comments Off on A Smart Christmas Gift for the Digital Artist and Web Designer!

What do I want for Christmas? Before I tell you, I think we should first get better acquainted. My name is Jerry, I am nineteen years old and am currently in my second year of college, majoring in art and animation. I am a digital artist, and therefore I can’t be bothered by nonsense like writing lines of code! Why can’t I design websites and let the computer code it for me? Well actually, I can do just that, or rather I will be able to if Santa’s good to me. What I want for Christmas this year is a copy of MediaLab’s SiteGrinder 2. I am assuming based on your interest in this article’s title that you or a loved one may be a digital artist or designer. If my assumption is correct, then this may just be the perfect Christmas gift!
SiteGrinder 2 is a very smart Photoshop Plug-In that allows artists to create any website lay out they could conjure up and SiteGrinder 2 will slice it, code it, and spit out a CSS-rich website! So from right inside Photoshop, any design can be transformed into a website without having to write even a single line of code! This is so because of SiteGrinder 2’s innovative use of a “hint” feature that lets the artist tell the application what to do with each layer of the the design. For example, a layer with the hint “-button” in its name will be transformed into a button once it’s been Grinded. Hints allow the artist to do anything from creating dynamic navigation menus to photo and thumbnail galleries in minutes!

You may be wondering, as I had, how good SiteGrinder2’s outputted code could possible be. Again, I’m an artist so what do I know about code? Not so much, but judging by favorable reviews on the Blogcritics Magazine (See helpful links), only CSS purists will have minor tiffs with SiteGrinder 2’s code. The Grinded websites are 100% web compliant though, and you could see by the samples on MediaLab’s official website that the possibilities with SiteGrinder 2 are endless.

This application would be the perfect gift for any digital artist who doesn’t have the time to invest in learning CSS and XHTML. I know that college has kept me pretty busy with school work this semester. With SiteGrinder 2, I can create websites much more efficiently and still have enough time to dedicate to my school work. Web design is a great source of extra income for the college student, and though the price of SiteGrinder 2 may seem steep ($249 student price for SiteGrinder 2 Pro, $349 non student), I feel that that it will quickly pay for itself. Maybe with SiteGrinder 2, I won’t have to live off of Pizza Bites!

 

Use Logo Tents for Good Visibility in Public

Posted on November 08, 2017 by in Business | Comments Off on Use Logo Tents for Good Visibility in Public

Custom printed canopies and logo tents are the perfect advertising mechanism whereby people simply have to take a look to take in your company’s message. Graphic tents and printed canopies keep the weather at bay, and also afford your company a bright, colourful way to present yourself to the public.
A commercial canopy is a great investment in your company because it puts your company logo and graphics up above most people’s line of sight, setting it above and giving it a visual prominence. Printed canopies offer a visual space for you to set up a booth with tables and chairs, offering literature, providing product samples, or even giving demonstrations of your company’s products at trade fairs and other public events.

Custom printed canopies also offer protection from the elements if you are setting up a booth outdoors. Rain can damage any kind of brochures and paperwork that you have on display, so logo tents provide an easy solution to the excess moisture issue. Also a problem during the warmer months is too much sun making for unpleasant conditions. You want people to linger at your booth, so anything you can do cause that to happen can benefit your business, because it gives people a bit more time to be exposed to what you have to offer them. If you can provide a shade-cover in the middle of a July business fair, your booth will be the popular one where everyone will want to be.

Another aspect that you will want to keep in mind is the ease of set up and tear down of logo tents and printed canopies. Pop-up graphic tents are available that you simply unpack and they spring into shape. These are very easy to set up, and quite easy to take down as well.

Custom printed canopies can also be used for outdoor athletic events. If you are in charge of organizing a walking or running event, you will need a great deal of logo tents and custom printed canopies to provide refreshments and registration areas for participants. Custom printed canopies can be emblazoned with the name of the event, or can be printed with corporate sponsor’s logos. Fabric colours are offered in a wide range, so that you can select ones that coordinate with the graphic designs being featured on the walls and roofs of the logo tents and other structures.

There is the perfect tent or canopy which can be custom designed to your specifications and needs, so that you can offer a stylish presence in any public setting where your company will be on display.

 

Holiday Gift Ideas for Artists

Posted on November 08, 2017 by in Business | Comments Off on Holiday Gift Ideas for Artists

Is there that one special person in your life that’s consumed by the arts? Are they involved in graphic design, painting, sculpture or do they simply like to draw? I’ve been involved in the arts in some way or another since early childhood and you don’t know how many times I’ve heard friends and relatives say, “I’d love to get you something that you really want but I don’t have a clue as to what that would be.”
I’ve covered just about every aspect of life as an artist; starting out with simple classroom projects in elementary school, from this early exposure, I developed a serious interest in all forms of the arts and continued this interest into university study. I graduated with a degree in art and moved on to teach in the classroom. While teaching, I started to enter regional competitions and eventually began to show my work in various galleries. This exposure led to my next career as an art director at an imprinted sportswear company, where I created logos and promotional materials for numerous companies. After leaving my position as an art director, I developed an interest in sculpture and ceramics, so I guess you could say I’ve covered a lot of territory when it comes to what most people perceive an artist to be. Therefore, having said all this, I think that I am qualified to suggest what type of gift an artist may want, so I have compiled a list of some of the top items on my “wish list”, I hope it helps.

One of the first things that I would suggest is for kids; it would be a basic drawing set for young artist. There are a myriad of brands on the market and most of them are reasonably priced, a good one will cost around 10 to 15 dollars. You can get these sets just about anywhere, arts and crafts shops, toy stores and large retail chain stores. I can still remember the first drawing set that I received on Christmas morning; it’s one of the things that started my life long love of the arts. The fact that my parents recognized my budding ability and interest in art meant a lot and it is one gift that I will always remember.

For that serious art student, I would suggest getting a nice portfolio. This is something that will be most useful as a student progresses through his studies, after all every student needs a nice portfolio to keep his best work in. Utrecht makes a nice Art-Folio for around $35.00, but prices can run considerably higher depending on the size and quality of the folio. Another consideration for the student would be a quality set of brushes. I know that was always scraping together money to get the best brushes that I could find. The cost of a good set of watercolor brushes starts around $125.00 and can be as much as $500.00 or more, which may seem a little high priced to most people, but believe me this is not unusual and a student, or professional for that matter, would be very grateful to get such a prize.

Another good gift idea for painters would be an easel. There are several types of easels, from portable ones that fold up into a backpack to the huge motorized studio easels. You can get most of the portable easels for around $20.00 or $30.00 dollars, this would be appropriate most students and casual hobbyist. You could also get a nice single mast easel costing around $50.00 for the home or small studio.

A great gift for the graphic designed would be a set of technical pens. Koh-i-Noor makes a slim set that would make a perfect holiday gift. You should be able to find these pens for about $60.00 for the set of seven. I know when I worked as an art director; I was always wearing out pens because of extensive use. If you can’t spend quite so much this holiday season, you could also purchase individual pens.

For the artist that likes to work in three dimensions, I would recommend getting a few blocks of Roma Plastilina modeling clay. The clay comes in 2 lb. blocks and cost about $9.00 per block. This may seem like a strange gift for those of you who are not sculptors but it is definitely something that can be used continually and is always appreciated. For the sculptor who carves instead of models, a tool kit for stone or wood would be nice. These tool kits run about $100.00 for the set.

A good gift idea for that special person who is into ceramics and likes to work with another type of clay would be a potter’s tool kit. These tool kits are readily available at any crafts store and are reasonably priced around $10.00.

To wrap things up, I would like to mention that a gift for an artist doesn’t have to be tools of the trade, you could get them attire, such as a tee shirt with their favourite slogan or a book with reproductions from their favourite artist or art movement; it’s always good to get something that will inspire you.

The Sybil House and the Dottie House: Two Miniature Dollhouses

Posted on November 08, 2017 by in Business | Comments Off on The Sybil House and the Dottie House: Two Miniature Dollhouses

In 1976 I purchased a magazine with the title The Miniature Magazine which was published by Harold H. Carstens, Sybil C. Harp, editor. I purchased the May issue and planned to complete a project offered by Barbara Mott titled: Inspired by Bliss/A dollhouse. I had two small children at the time, and the magazine, and the project, was stored for use at a later time. Well, here it is 2010, and, I just completed the project featured in the May issue of the 1976 The Miniature Magazine.
I am so glad that I found, and kept, that magazine. The little dollhouse that I just finished is precious. The dollhouse is an original design by Barbara Mott which was inspired by a lithographed house made in the United States by R. Bliss, Converse, Whitney-Reed, and others during the 1830’s to 1900. This house, number 11 in the series, is called The Sybil House. The completed house is 6 ½ inches high from the roof peak to the bottom of the house, 4 inches wide and 2 12 inches deep, with two floors. The outside walls are printed, as is the chimney. The instructions in the magazine include the print, a list of materials needed, instructions for cutting the wooden pieces and tips for finishing the roof and interior of the dollhouse. The dollhouse is colourful, a nice size and a great historical replication of a common house of that period.

A few years after buying the magazine, I discovered, and also purchased The Mott’s Miniature Furniture Workshop Manual, published by Fox Books of the Fox Chapel Publishing Co., Inc. I purchased this book in 1995, and was pleased to discover plans for building The Dottie House, a reproduction of an antique lithographed doll house, which The Sybil House was based on. This tiny doll house was purchased from Dottie Von Fliss by Allegra Irene Mitchell Mott, Barbara Mott’s mother. As you can see in the picture, this house is much smaller, being only 3 inches tall from the roof peak to the bottom of the house, 2 inches wide and almost 1 ½ inches deep, with two floors. This tiny dollhouse has a hinged front so that you may open it. The outside walls are printed, and the original doll house interior was also lithographed, however this tiny house needs to be finished by the builder.

I built The Dottie House the day after I built The Sybil House. And, it was easy to build them both. The instructions were clear, the prints were easy to apply, and the interiors were easily finished too. I like them both. Both are attractive and will add a great touch to my miniature collection.