Just wishing to share with you all a little update. The full screen body size of the website has been expanded out to 1100 pixels, thus giving more room for the main left area of the page. The background has also been given a slightly new color scheme. I was also able to accomplish re-coding the table displays for the staff and board member pages. It took awhile to figure out why one of the tables just wasn’t moving and growing properly. In the end I ended up just taking the working code from on of the tables and doing a copy and past with the internal data.
I also came up with an alternate header image that incorporates a more personal touch to the website. The building is the organizations main offices and the bird is a local summer time resident out on the prairie that belongs to the organization. I may still do another version that has a better blending zone behind the logo, but I believe the idea is a better one than the previous header I’d put in. Even though you can’t see it on this screen shot, I altered the page headers so they are all the same CSS coded format. It was a better solution than creating jpg imagery for each header and putting it in that way.
One of the issues with working with CMS, such as Joomla or WordPress is that one only has a certain number of CSS tag locations that can be named and altered through a Custom Style Sheet. I keep running into instances were I’d really like to have been able to incorporate an extra named div box around something for greater control or an extra effect. But as of yet, I’ve not been able to find out if there is a way to re-write the auto generated HTML for the articles. I think it would be prudent that I find a source for more information on how PHP works in relation to the calling of the Template index pages.
In the last few months I’ve had the opportunity to become part of an idea that leads to something better. That idea is called Pacific Rim Institute for Environmental Stewardship. While my part in it all started out as an internship for a college course, it is becoming something more than it was. I’ve found myself in the amazing pathway that leads towards more experience in website design, content management systems and embraces the people that are the life blood of this Non-Profit organization.
Each day is bringing new ideas and new visions to life. The website is beginning to take on a fresh feel and can only grow from where it is now. As I learn more, that knowledge is put back into the organization and it’s webpage. While I must admit, there are many challenges that come along with diving deep into something strange and new, there are just as many delights that shine brightly.
I look forward to what the future will bring. Not just for PRI, but for myself as I continue to grow. I’m sure the site will grow along side me as it seems we’ve been paired to find success in the trails that we meander down.
Please feel free to stop on in and check out Pacific Rim’s website. You never know, you might just find a cause to support or a destination to visit.
Sometimes I just feel like doing something random. This along with it’s partners in my flicker feed were today’s outflow of creativity. Well, not entirely. I was able to work with some detail coding and design from a website that I’ve been helping re-vamp. I have a great love for all things regarding color. No matter what it is. I think that’s why I like working with Website Design and all the things one can do with Custom Style Sheets (CSS). If anyone wants to go take a look at that project, here’s the link : http://pacificriminstitute.org/website/
The Process of Pordroon
Working with a really worn and old map that I’d drawn along time ago, I was able to scan it, trace it and create a digital landmass map for the world. This is only the Eastern Hemisphere of the World of Pordroon. If you click on the image, it will take you to my Flickr version that can be seen in a much larger format.
You’ll see in the large version that I’ve made some additions and re-shaped some of the landmasses so they have a bit better look to them. Of course, as this is only the landmass map, it doesn’t have any of the forest, river, or mountain work done.
The background of both map images is also made from the image of the map. It was warped and artistically composed in Adobe Photoshop from the lower of the two map images.
The latest of my map making endeavors. This is the Province of Kindros and the Kinderling Isles. It is part of a larger world that I’ll slow be creating. The world, known as Mountfall had originally been created years ago while I was a Dungeon Master for a Dungeons and Dragons gaming group. Since I never found the prefab worlds much of interest, I always made my own. While, I’ve got many of the places and spaces of that world, hand drawn, I realized it’s time to bring the world into modern times and re-make the world in the digital age.
With the map above, I went out and took pictures of textures for the cartographic event. While there are many places on the net that one can download stock textures. I found that is far more enjoyable to make the textures myself. In this way, I continued my mentality that original is truly original.
I’m close to having one whole hemisphere of the world map completed. When I do, I’ll be posting it here on my art blog. You’ll then be able to see where these individual maps fit into the picture. Some of the individual pieces that I will be adding in the future may be blow ups of very tiny pieces of the world. This happens when an area is important to the world culture of in gaming concepts, important to the plot of the story line, and a key to adventure.
Feel free to comment and let me know what you think, or if you have any suggestions that might help me improve my technique. I’m always interested in learning new ways of working on my art.
“The Inner Waters of the Elvish Isles”
There has always been something fascinating about maps; Be it those that one can find in books about ancient peoples and places, those made for games like Dungeons & Dragons, or those found in the topographical section in stores that sell them to hikers. Maps are inspiration and discovery. They tell stories and hold secrets. Maps are just down right amazing.
For many years I was a Dungeon Master and had my own role playing group. I would always hand draw my own maps so to keep the story lines original and the worlds unique. Some of those maps were small, some large, some simple and some very, very complex and detailed. And all of them were a joy to spend the hours and hours over the paper with colored pencils in hand to create.
Recently, I’ve been working on learning what it takes to put together my maps via computer programs, rather than the traditional hand drawn method. In the past, the maps I found online, that other people created never really inspired me. Yet, last week I came across a Cartography Forum that had gobs of tutorials on how to make your own maps in Programs like Adobe Photoshop and GIMP. I’ll admit, I got excited looking through them all.
What I share with you today is my third attempt. Using only Photoshop and it’s myriad of tools. I’ve given life to part of a world that, even though it existed in the realms of my role playing lives, I’d never drawn a map of it. So now, with new understanding and knowledge of how and what I can do to create maps on the computer, my quest for coming up with amazing original maps has restarted. I look forward to learning more, experimenting more and bringing more of the worlds that I’ve created over the years to life.
It is within the graven grasp of another
That same twisted fate, soiled in blather
That I, a wonderer and wanderer of fate
Must take a step into the rivers chill.
The waters of another time whispered in severed truths
The ice that boiled in the veins of anti-fables, broke free
The sun, with it’s vixen and quaranteened heat
Tossed the poor reasoning’s behind the bin, so aptly labeled…
“Trash for tomorrow, love for today.”
Quieted now, hushings upon the flow of fates
The stones overturned spoke of nothingness
The stones left alone, forgot all their secrets,
Promptly turning to sand and running in fear
To the ocean’s compressive embrace below.
A flailing hand, if eyes had been at least upon the horizon,
Would have seen it shattered within the propeller of hypocrisy.
No help for the true,
Only death for those who try and break the delusions
Of the blind and souless.
So let us give homage to the great treasoners!
They who broke the molds and walls of the grand lies
Who tempered patience with sense
Who gutted the fake with love
Upon a world… If only.
They lay apart upon that chasm
A gulf of fact and reality
That the dreams may never touch the world of man
For they would shatter the mirrors violently
Of that which the world believes as solid.
I often ask myself what art is. Is it something to look at? Something to ponder over? Something to express what is going on inside one’s emotions or mind? The answer I always seem to spin back towards is this. Art is the medium in which an artist expels a contemplation. This contemplation in turn is designed, even if by accident, to cause a reaction. Any reaction is a good reaction. Any response is a good response. For it is the ideas and concepts and opinions reflected by others that gives the artist the greatest amount of joy.
Below you will find two of my most recent creations. Both pieces started off from the same creation that I had made previously and had sitting in memory on my lap top. Thus both pieces are variants of an original idea. The first artistic creation is titled, “Aquarian Egg”. The second is titled, “Cavernous Thoughts”.
When you view art, what do you feel? See? Think about? There is no right or wrong answer to these questions, but they are questions that are enlightening and enjoyable when an artist can find out what others reactions to their creations are.
Within the matrix of a fractured mind lies an object of silent beauty. Dreams, wishes, and journeys yet to be taken along the unseen horizon, all bringing forth a flow of imagery and mental fusion. Breathing in, taking in all that is and might ever be, in one deep dive, living for a moment, trapped in the now, and looking forward to the re-birth of a new flow of existence.
We wonder where it all went; The all of colors and hues, that in creative flux painted us white. Was it perchance a dream or a diluted form of failure, or another wish, where a broken bone failed to split in favor of a miracle and instead gave birth to a nightmare. Inward is the chill that got quickened and outward was the flame of reflection. So was the way of the mode, that while of time and wish, that we could have had in return.
So forth becomes the mood and with it the manic and many. Growing like a raging stream and a halting tire, the plume of questions and fear reverberates through the soul and chalkboards of the mind. We are only as mighty as the fuel that we have destroyed, or seems the look that was glared from a broken window pane in time’s heated discussion. So many, so few, just answers that lay as cinders upon the aging ground.
It will be a moment again, another thought of shine that will brighten and glow, yet cover the rising dream as to protect the horizon from those who would drill deep into the coffers of greed. No more limes or coconuts, only a bottle of the most hideous, yet coveted of time inspired wine. Let all ponder on, for the moment is near and lazy are leaving the strong drowning in the waters of fear.