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26. New Book About How Not to Teach Art!

Project Flop:
Good Lessons From A Bad Teacher

The only class I ever failed in college was ‘Intro To Art Education’. Ironic, as I am now the Arts Department Chair at Apex High School.  So why a book about failures? Because I believe I can’t take credit for my successes unless I take credit for my failings. There are hundred’s of books about classroom successes. This is a book about failures 

Kindle Edition on Amazon 
Paperback on Amazon

All project start off with the best intentions. Whether you create the lesson from scratch or borrow it from someone else, in your mind you envision success. You write your lesson trying to plan for every situation that may arise. The supplies are laid out, a presentation and a demo are reviewed and practiced, and everything should go off without a hitch. 

Then, be it fate, a misalignment of the planets or perhaps the art gods are angry, the lesson falls apart. Regardless of your preparation the students don’t understand. As for your enthusiasm, the class simply doesn’t share your zeal for the project. You try to pull it all together but in the end, for lack of a better word, it fails. Worse off, you take it personally. You feel like you failed. You will be happy to know that you’re in good company. 


Project Flop consists of stories from some of the biggest failures at Ian Sands ever taught at Apex High School. Some projects were domed from the start, others appeared successful till an unexpected twist occurred. View some of the failed projects here!


Kindle Edition on Amazon 
Paperback on Amazon



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27. Free Kindle Books!

Christmas Day is finally here! You rip open your gift and to your delight you received a Kindle or iPad or other wonderful device that reads eBooks. How very exciting! What could make that present even better?? A Free Kindle Book!!

Starting Christmas day, and running the day after, you can download any of the following great reads for free! Check them out -->




















The Metal Marble:
Tucker's Aunt Nyce is his mom's little sister only she isn't that little and she isn't that nice. He has to get used to it though because he's stuck working at her beach restaurant The Crab & Grab for the next two weeks. 

While hauling boxes of stinky fish from the dock, Tucker and his 11-year-old cousin Trist discover a golf ball size, transparent metal "marble" floating in the sea.

Ignoring the warnings from salty dog Chef, Tucker and Trist leave the marble in the sunshine until it dries. The marble hatches into a half real, half robotic mechanical turtle.

From the moment the marble opens, Aunt Nyce places Tucker in charge of the turtle. He soon realizes the biggest threat comes from his aunt's schemes to use the unique creature to draw customers.


Download The Metal Marble Free December 25th & 26th


-------



Shellless:
Jirst Bluefin's biggest problem is being ignored. Kacela Middleton is the one person in the world who is never ignored. Jirst is about to discover that sometimes it's better to be ignored for no reason than to become popular over nothing at all.

Shellless is the story of Jirst Bluefin the First as he tries to overcome his biggest problem, being ignored. After befriending Kacelia Middleton, the one person in the world who is never ignored, Jirst discovers that it's better to be ignored for no reason than to become popular for the wrong.

Jirst Bluefin is a quirky, loner who spends his afternoons talking to imaginary dinosaurs that swim in a pond. The dinosaurs look like turtles that lost their shells. He calls them the Shellless.

Download Shellless Free December 25th & 26th


-------


Crushing Turtles:
Tori crushes turtles. She crushes box turtles and painted turtles, sliders and musk turtles. She secretly wishes she could go to the beach and step on baby sea turtles as they leave the nest. The only turtle Tori hasn’t crushed; the only one she wants to crush, lives in that lake. It waits at the bottom buried in the mud. Tori has never seen it but she knows its there... and she hates it.

Download Crushing Turtles Free December 25th & 26th

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28. Crushing Turtles : Published Finally

Available on Amazon

I started this book about five years ago. After working on it for a week, I stopped myself. This was not my usual, whimsical story. Why was I writing this story?

A year later, I read over what little I had. I liked what i had written and decided to pick it up again. After another week, I had the same experience. This went on for several years.

Finally last year, I was having a discussion about National Write a Novel in a Month with a student. She encouraged me to take part in NaNoWriMo again as I had in the past. I told her I couldn't start something new since I still had stories I hadn't finished. She was persistent so I made a promise to finish Crushing Turtles. It then took me another year to actually post it. So here we are.

Below, are short, excerpts from a few chapters in the story.



Two:
Nick likes Tori. He brings her turtles. Tori
likes Nick. He reminds her of her little brother.
Tori never crushes turtles in front of Nick.
“It would corrupt your soul,” She says.
Nick isn’t sure what a soul is or what
corrupt means, he just knows it sounds bad.

Three:
Tori is never hard to find. She’s at the lake.
Kids swim in the lake. They swim from the shore
out to the float. They dive off the board. Nick
wants to swim to the float and dive off the board.
It looks like fun. Nick is too small. He stands on
the dock.
Tori doesn’t swim. She used to swim near
the shore with her little brother. He was too small
to swim to the float. Tori doesn’t swim anymore.
She stands on the dock.

Nine:
The older boy’s rod bends. He reels in his
line and pulls up a sunfish. It flops around on the
dock. The older boy takes a knife from his tackle
box. He steps on the fish to hold it still and cuts
off its head.
“Stupid sunny.” Says the boy. He flicks the
knife sending the two pieces of fish into the lake.
“Turtle food.”
Nick watches the fish head sink.

Ten:
Nick kicks the sheet off his feet and
uncovers his toes. He thinks about fish heads. He
wonders if cutting a fish in half in front of him
corrupted his soul. But he doesn’t know what
corrupt means.
“What’s a soul?” asks Nick.
“It’s the part of you that doesn’t die.” says
Tori.
Nick looks at his toes and wonders if one of
them is his soul.
“Which part?”
“Inside you. Like, inside your heart.”

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29. Interchangeables!



A new batch of Critters is born! The "interchangeables"! So named because the top half and bottom half are separate so they can be swapped out with other critters! How exciting! Yes, I know!

If you look at these images, you will notice a few things. first, these Critters have already been swapped around. Second, there are words on the front of each Critter. These words say stuff like Dream/Passionately or Accept/Entirely. However, since they are Interchangeables, you might come up with some new sayings like, Dream/Entirely. See how that works?

Where can i get one you ask? Well, check Downtown Raleigh on First Friday.. You might just find some if you know where to look :)




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30. Spray Painting on the iPad


Been messing around with the Spray Paint app on the the iPad. It runs a little sluggish but maybe cause I have an older iPad.. I lost my stylus so I've been working with my finger which isn't as easy.. I need to get a new one.. remind me!



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31. 1000 Zonkeys


I had this idea.. What if I created 1000 plush stuff animal zonkeys and sent them to art teachers every where? The zonkeys could be used to inspire students to write stories, create paintings, collaborate on animations and a host of other creative ideas that haven't even been thought of yet... 

so I'm creating a Kickstarter page to well, kick it all off. Here is the 135 character promo...

#1000Zonkeys will place 1000 plush zonkeys into the hands of art students across the nation in order to inspire them to create and make art! 

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32. LOL!


--------

"Fresh" works by Ian Sands..
Above: three separate works placed together how they will be displayed.
Below: each of the works individually
Mixed Media: ink, acrylic, colored pencil, pastel, marker

---------




--------






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33. The Metal Marble : Free for Kindle!



Get a Free Copy of
The Metal Marble
This weekend
Starting Friday August 9th and running till Sunday August 11th.
Download your copy of The Metal Marble on Amazon for absolutely nothing!

That's right, a Free copy of The Metal Marble!!


The Metal Marble

Tucker’s Aunt Nyce is his mom’s little sister only she isn’t that little and she isn’t that nice. He has to get used to it though because he’s stuck working at her beach restaurant The Crab & Grab for the next two weeks.

While hauling boxes of stinky fish from the dock, Tucker and his 11-year-old cousin Trist discover a golf ball size, transparent metal "marble" floating in the sea.

Ignoring the warnings from salty dog Chef, Tucker and Trist leave the marble in the sunshine until it dries. The marble hatches into a half real, half robotic mechanical turtle.

From the moment the marble opens, Aunt Nyce places Tucker in charge of the turtle. He soon realizes the biggest threat comes from his aunt’s schemes to use the unique creature to draw customers.

Tucker may be scrawny and shy on the outside, but he knows the difference between right and wrong. He names the turtle, Gearbox and together with Trist, faces a constant challenge to foil Aunt Nyce's plans.

Tucker’s solutions only lead Aunt Nyce to generate more horrible ideas. Will it all boil to a head when his aunt decides to add turtle to a special buffet dinner menu??

Nothing says summer like a good book and a wind up turtle!

Aprox 5,000 words. Third Grade.

Grab your copy of The Metal Marble on Amazon!


Looking for more summer reading? Check out our 2013 Summer Reading List!

.

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34. Zonkey Walk: Test One


Zonkey Walk: Test 1 from Apex HS Art on Vimeo.

This is a test of the walking ability of the Zonkey Box. This is the first test using different timing and distance to judge the best overall walk cylce plus we included the delightful Will Smith.

Next steps (no pun intended) to take Zonkey for a walk all over Apex. I'm talking about a lot of photos... stay tuned!!

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35. Critter Posters Cont...



Meanwhile, back in the studio...


For those of you sick of reading about stuff that makes us angry.. stuff that makes us mad.. stuff that makes us unhappy...

Along with cranking out a few books this summer I'm also back in the studio working on a few paintings.

An art teacher friend of mine once described my work as "A Party On Paper." 

These works are going to be a combination of the concept behind the Critter Cubes created for a public art project in Wake Forest and the style of my digital work, only using mixed media. 

So these are (still) just started. Let's see where it all goes...

Hope it makes you.. happy!





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36. Shellless # 94 on Amazon!


I'm not unhappy to see Shellless at #94 on the Amazon Best Sellers... even if it is in the top 100 free section! But that's good cause it means you get to read it for free! And that's good because it's a good story and it needs to be read! 

Shellless is the story of Jirst Bluefin trying to overcome his biggest problem, being ignored.  After befriending Kacelia Middleton, the one person in the world who is never ignored, Jirst discovers that it's better to be ignored for no reason than to become popular for the wrong.You can read the entire story from beginning to end, Free! 

This weekend, starting Friday, July 12th thru Sunday, July 14th, Shellless will be available as a free download! How exciting!! 

Click here this during the dates mentioned above to download your free copy of Shellless





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37. Shellless: Free This Weekend!


Shellless is the story of Jirst Bluefin trying to overcome his biggest problem, being ignored. You can read the entire story from beginning to end, Free!

This weekend, starting Friday, July 12th thru Sunday, July 14th, Shellless will be available as a free download! How exciting!!

Click here this during the dates mentioned above to download your free copy of Shellless!

Here is a little about this book -->

After befriending Kacelia Middleton, the one person in the world who is never ignored, Jirst discovers that it's better to be ignored for no reason than to become popular for the wrong.

Jirst Bluefin is a quirky, loner who spends his afternoons talking to imaginary dinosaurs that swim in a pond. The dinosaurs look like turtles that lost their shells. He calls them the Shellless.

After a chance meeting, the intelligent and sophisticated Kacelia Middleton befriends Jirst. Taking note of Jirst's major problem, being ignored, Kacelia encourages him to come out of his shell. 

Jirst tries a few funny, yet failed attempts at gaining popularity. Desperate to acquire recognition, Jirst resorts to telling his classmates the tale of his make-believe, dinosaur friends. However, he inadvertently leaves the impression that the Shellless are real. Believing that extinct plesiosaur swim in the pond of the local park gives Jirst the boost of popularity he covets.

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38. Crushing Turtles : Excerpt



The excitement continues around the 2013 Summer read... First, and this is top secret so don't tell anyone.. there will be three, free giveaways this summer! How exciting! Yes, I know!

First, next weekend, Shellless will be available as a free download at the Kindle Store on Amazon!

The next week, The Metal Marble will also have a free promotional give away!

The week after that will be the launch of the long anticipated release of Crushing Turtles!!

Meanwhile, here is an excerpt from chapter one of the not yet released book...



CRUSHING TURTLES
by
Ian Sands


One

Tori crushes turtles. Sometimes she smashes them with a rock. Sometimes she takes them home and whacks them with a hammer. Her favorite way is to simply step on them till their shells crack beneath her feet. It really doesn’t matter how she crushes them as long as they smush.

She crushes box turtles and painted turtles, sliders and musk turtles. She secretly wishes she could go to the beach and step on baby sea turtles as they leave the nest… but the beach is far away. Besides, there are plenty of turtles to crush at the lake and she can walk there.

The only turtle Tori hasn’t crushed yet; the only one she wants to crush lives in that lake. They say it has a three-foot wide shell and a four-foot long tail. It waits in the mud at the bottom of the lake. That’s why Tori has never seen it. But she knows its there and she hates it.

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39. Shellless



I have to say, with the exception of Crushing Turtles (coming Summer 2013), if you ever wanted to get inside the head of Ian Sands, Shellless is the story.

Shellless is the story of Jirst Bluefin the First as he tries to overcome his biggest problem, being ignored. After befriending Kacelia Middleton, the one person in the world who is never ignored, Jirst discovers that it's better to be ignored for no reason than to become popular for the wrong.

For a buck 99, Shellless is well worth the the price and is certainly the read. Though written as a children's book, like all of my stories, there is certainly element written for adults. 

Shellless on Amazon, Click Here!

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40. Crushing Turtles : Book Cover



Working on the cover art for this summer's block buster read, Crushing Turtles.. coming soon!

This book is something different then much of what I've written before. A strange title, a strange subject matter and a little dark. I like the characters, especially their voice. In fact, it was probably the character's voice that originally masked the dark storyline.

The turtle on the cover is a musk turtle painted from an observational sketch like this one -->


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41. All Available Books



How to Milk a Dinocow

If a freak milk accident that sparks life to a half cow, half stegosaurus isn’t weird enough, imagine how strange it’s going to get when Trip Stanley’s class starts drinking the milk! Trip Stanley’s best friend Jules spills a glass of creamery milk onto his uncle’s dinosaur machine and activates the contraption. A creature hatches and grows rapidly into a black and white spotted stegosaurus with and an udder. A stegcowsaurus. When the last bottle of creamery milk that Jules had planned to bring to school for show and tell is knocked over, Trip decides to milk the stegcowsaurus. Everyone in class is given a taste and the reaction causes spots and horns. One classmate even grows a tail. It’s up to Trip to figure out how to de-dinosaur his classmates and keep from getting kicked out of school, all while preventing his mom from discovering the stegcowsaurus in his bedroom. With angry classmates and an upset teacher in his living room, Trip finds a solution in his own advice, when life give you lemons you make lemonade. Realizing the correlation between milk and lemons, Trip reverses the beverages and changes his classmates back into classmates and his dinocow into a cow.



----------

Shellless

Jirst Bluefin's biggest problem is being ignored. Kacela Middleton is the one person in the world who is never ignored. Jirst is about to discover that sometimes it's better to be ignored for no reason than to become popular over nothing at all. Shellless is the story of Jirst Bluefin the First as he tries to overcome his biggest problem, being ignored. After befriending Kacelia Middleton, the one person in the world who is never ignored, Jirst discovers that it's better to be ignored for no reason than to become popular for the wrong. Jirst Bluefin is a quirky, loner who spends his afternoons talking to imaginary dinosaurs that swim in a pond. The dinosaurs look like turtles that lost their shells. He calls them the Shellless. After a chance meeting, the intelligent and sophisticated Kacelia Middleton befriends Jirst. Taking note of Jirst's major problem, being ignored, Kacelia encourages him to come out of his shell. Jirst tries a few funny, yet failed attempts at gaining popularity. Desperate to acquire recognition, Jirst resorts to telling his classmates the tale of his make-believe, dinosaur friends. However, he inadvertently leaves the impression that the Shellless are real. Believing that extinct plesiosaur swim in the pond of the local park give Jirst the boost of popularity he covets.

Coming Soon!
---------

The Metal Marble

Tucker's Aunt Nyce is his mom's little sister only she isn't that little and she isn't that nice. He has to get used to it though because he's stuck working at her beach restaurant The Crab & Grab for the next two weeks. While hauling boxes of stinky fish from the dock, Tucker and his 11-year-old cousin Trist discover a golf ball size, transparent metal "marble" floating in the sea. Ignoring the warnings from salty dog Chef, Tucker and Trist leave the marble in the sunshine until it dries. The marble hatches into a half real, half robotic mechanical turtle. From the moment the marble opens, Aunt Nyce places Tucker in charge of the turtle. He soon realizes the biggest threat comes from his aunt's schemes to use the unique creature to draw customers.

Coming Soon!
---------


The Critter Cube Book

There are three sections of the Critter Cube book. The first section introduces the characters. Since the Critter Cube Book is designed to be interactive, this section allows the reader to decide what characteristics each character will have. The second part of the book allows the reader to write his or her own story. There are prompts that the reader can use as helpful guides but they will determine the story. The third section of the book is a flipbook that allows the reader to change not only the story line, but also the characters by simply flipping the pages. The Critter Cube Book is sponsored by the Graham Johnson Cultural Arts Endowment; a non-profit organization whose purpose is to develop, promote and coordinate the arts and cultural experiences for the community of Wake Forest as well as North Carolina.


The Critter Cube Book Available on Amazon!

--------

Ligers, Tigons And Pizzlies

When two different kinds of animals, which are very closely related, create a new life, the baby animal is called a hybrid. For example, if a zebra and a horse have a foal, the yearling is a hybrid called a zorse. Zorse is a cool name. Hybrid however, is a boring name that sounds more like a way to create electricity by pouring water through a turbine than it does a combination of two living creatures. From now on, I'm going to refer to hybrids as newimals. Though some are rare, all of the newimals in this book are real.


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42. Art Of Education 2013 Online Conference


Tuesday, June 25th, I presented at the Art Of Education 2013 Online Conference.. How very exciting! Yes, I know! And not only presented but I went first! Feeling pretty good about being the opening act :)

There were two parts to this conference.  The first part was a pre-recorded video that went live for attendees at 11am EST. There was also a live chat during the same time where I tried to answer questions. 

The second half is ongoing as the presentations have been posted to the Art Of Education Ning site. There is also a forum where attendees of the conference can post questions.


Above: A photo I snagged off of Twitter

So what was my presentation about? Well, here is the intro...

Art Vs Education!

Art teachers are creative beings. We teach a creative subject with creative materials. However, the bureaucracy of education; pacing guides, standards and even the curriculum can jab, punch and often KO an art teacher’s creative endeavor. In this presentation we’ll toe the line with the issues that put art teachers up against the ropes and we’ll learn how to knock those concerns out of the ring. Let’s get ready to rumble!

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43. The Posters:




These just under way. I haven't made any non-street art since my last show at the Block Gallery. To be honest, I wasn't sure if I wanted to show again.. Now I'm thinking, this might be fun.

These works are going to be a combination of the concept behind the Critter Cubes created for a public art project in Wake Forest and the style of my digital work, only using mixed media.

So these are just started. Let's see where it all goes...



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44. Grand Rapids Art Museum

This morning I'll be taking part on a panel discussing Technology and 21st Century Skills in the Art Classroom at the Grand Rapids Art Museum

According to the flyer we will be:

Exploring best and emerging practices for applications of technology in the art room.

Engaged with a wide ranging panel of experts (that's me :) on the topics of social media, essential skills, classroom management, curriculum development, assessment, and contemporary art.

Connecting with educators (me again), artists, and administrators through online dialogue.

Discovering new and exciting ways to use technology in your classroom, while working with teachers from across the state to discuss and brainstorm solutions to potential stumbling blocks.

If you're not in grand Rapids, you can still follow along on Twitter. For starters, follow me @iansands

OK, here we go!


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45. Love and Pancakes



One of my students told me she had to write a speech for her Speech 2 class. She needed to write the speech based on a quote. I said the only quote I know is one I made up..

“Love is better than pancakes, and pancakes are really good.”

To my surprise, she used this quote for her speech. Today, she received her grade. 100. :)  Below is the speech she gave.



Hello my name is Katelynn W and I wanted to start off talking about one of the art teachers at our school, Mr. Sands. He teaches Art 1, computer art, and art history.  He is very creative, fun, supportive, and is one of my favorite teachers. So after I was given this assignment to talk about a motivational speech, I asked him what his favorite inspirational quote was.  He replied with a quote he made himself which is:” Love, is better than pancakes.  And pancakes are really really really really good.”
               
 So naturally after hearing that, I started daydreaming about pancakes.  I imagined waking up on a Sunday morning to the smell of freshly made warm pancakes, and after getting out of a nice warm bed, I pictured an endless table FULL of every type of pancake you could imagine.  Fresh chocolate chip pancakes where the chocolate chips are still warm and melty, and it’s piled with whipped cream, or maybe pumpkin spice pancakes with a little bit of cinnamon and powdered sugar or those little Mickey Mouse pancakes with the cute little ears.  There are SO many different types of pancakes; from the batter recipe to all the different toppings the possibilities are endless.
                 
And think of ALL the different people who would be at that table.  People who you never would have thought you had something in common with, probably people you never thought you’d get a long with. But there you all are surrounding each other, while you’re all enjoying freshly made pancakes, being happy. Together.
               
 Love is a lot like pancakes. Love is what connects us all together, it is what inspires us, what drives us; it’s what makes us human.  Love is made up of so many different emotions, experiences, and “recipes” .  Love is different for every person, just like how every pancake is unique.  I also think that everyone loves differently too, and in order to experience love to its fullest beauty, we have to accept love in all of its different, odd, and wonderful ways. 
               
 You can find love for everything and everyone. I know personally, I find that people can get really annoying, frustrating, and can be just plain stupid. However, I also know that every person has a quality that makes them brilliant.  Every single person on the planet deserves love, and ONLY YOU have the power to give your love to someone, and to make the difference.  Remember, you don’t have to like people; you just have to love them.
              
  I’d like to leave you with, what I believe to be the most important part of that quote. Where it says: “love is better than pancakes”. Better. Love is what we need to share with everyone. What you can share with everyone and what will be shared with you in return.  Love is what lasts, love is what brings happiness, and love is what will bring out a radiant and a rarely seen beauty that will last much longer than any pancake ever will. 

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46. iPads and Flying Planes


I don't much like to fly. Well, that's not true. I don't mind flying. i'm more afraid of crashing. Something about not being in control and being squished into some little tube going 500 miles na hour doesn't sit well with me. 

To avoid panic, i like to draw on my iPad. Here are a few from my Flying Plane series... Above: Draw to NYC


Flying back to Raleigh from NY. I was pretty tired ;)


I think I made this one flying back to Raleigh from the NAEA conference in Texas


Pretty sure this was painted on the way to Texas, going to the NAEA conference.

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47. 123D Sculpt


One of the iPad apps I've started playing around with called 123D Sculpt. It's like having a little virtual ball of clay and pulling on it till it looks like something.. or sort of looks like something :)





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48. Critters 3.0

Pretty sure we are on version Critter 3.0...

Introducing Cork Critters!!



Miniature street art ready to be found or washed down the sewer.. whichever comes first...

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49. 123D Creature : iPad App



Last night I gave 123D Creature a whirl. I gotta say, at first I was conbaffled... but as i started to play around, I started to figure it out. 


At first, I just wanted to make anything... just to see how the app worked..


Then I decided to try to make something in particular. So I made this giraffe.

I like the lights and how you apply the textures. Very similar to 123D Sculpt but more powerful. Less guessing and more exacting.

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50. No, It's Not Digital!



New paintings! And no, they are not digital. I found some of that stinky paper in the storage room at school. I mean stinky, literally. It smells really weird! 

It doesn't have a good texture and it doesn't have a very good weight but for whatever reason, I like to draw on it. 

So I'm working on some new stuff, which is really old stuff cause I always draw the same thing over and over again and that's ok cause it makes me happy. Took these pics on my phone so they are not very good but you get the idea...


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