Prison – A Haiku
the prison holding me now
I long to be free
If you or anyone you know is suicidal, please contact your local help centers or call 1-800-273-8255. Please get help. The world is a better place with you in it.
Welcome to Weekend Coffee Share, the wonderful little blog hop where we all get together and share whatever we want to talk about over a cup of coffee. If you were here today, I would offer you some more thumbprint cookies. Store bought, sorry. It has been a somewhat crazy week.
You might be wondering why I am back at WordPress. The short version of this is, that Wix was not what it was cracked up to be. I will write more about my thoughts on Wix in a few days, but let me tell you they are not the best.
So, I am going to make the best of this blog format for right now. And guess what, I already feel better, less stressed, and more focused. Sometimes taking an action away from what you thought was a good idea can be freeing. No reason to try to make something that does not work, work. All that does is cause stress. Something I really do not need more off. I am sure you can relate.
There is a lot to do this week, I have three books to read and review, two products to review (once they arrive), organize this space a little better to make it work for me right now, until I switch over to WordPress.org ( I am not in a hurry, this time, I am going to make sure I took the time to learn everything I need to make this transition smooth, instead of listening to pure recommendations), work on some more designs for Redbubble and Zazzle, and create a few new freebies for you guys. I also have tons of content that I am working on, that I want to share with you, some of it related to making money online, others a little more personal about living with allergies and chronic illness. I am hoping you will stop back here to check those posts out over the next few weeks.
Until I have moved all of the content back from Wix to here, I am expecting to post almost twice a day, fresh content once, the other, those articles I had on the other site. Then, hopefully by the end of this month, everything will be back to normal.
But enough about me, how was your week? I hope your weather was as pleasant as it had been here in Las Vegas. I really enjoyed the warmth of over 75 degrees, even if the mornings are still really cold. The dogs enjoyed the weather as well.
Have a great week, and see you next weekend for more coffee talk!
Hey, good to see you! I just made coffee, and I have fresh bread rolls that are still hot from the oven, ready to be topped with delicious jam or some homemade vegan Nutella. How to make homemade Nutella, you ask? Rather simple:
Take 1/4 cup of hazelnut butter (you can use peanut or almond butter, but trust me it is not the same then using the real hazelnut butter stuff), put it in a bowl, add 1/4 teaspoon of vanilla extract, 2 tablespoons of raw agave nectar, and a tablespoon of cocoa powder. Mix it well. I recommend doubling the recipe though because most of the time someone else will want some too. Just like the real thing, this stuff is addicting.
Drinking our hot beverages, I would tell you that I am still not fond of the weather here. Way too cold. I am hiding under my blanket with a space heater next to me, simply because I like it cozy. If it gets too warm for you, let me know, and I will turn it down.
I was looking through my older stories, and found the following Flash Fiction again, and I wanted to share it with you. It is called, “A New Friend” and I hope you will enjoy it.
A New Friend
He wasn’t such a scary fellow. Ugly maybe, but who was I to judge him by his looks? Too many people tended to judge people by their appearance. But I knew better.
His eyes, not meeting mine for more than a second at a time, where big and full of mistrust. Hair, thick and unkempt, covered up most of his distorted face, his body bent forward in a mixture of agony and malformation. As he reached for the spindle, his broken left hand was surprisingly capable of doing the deed in front of him. Again he glanced, and again the glance ended as quickly as it had begun.
“I will do what you asked for.”
His voice, as broken as his body was soft, but determined.
“I am sure you will.”
“And you will do as promised.”, he demanded.
“As I always do.”
He paused, then nodded, continuing to work the spindle, swiftly, with a confidence that defied his outer appearance and demeanor. Two minutes later, he stopped, his crackling voice echoing through the silence “Why?”
“Why, what?”, I answered.
“Why do you watch?”
“Because I am curious.”
“Ahh”., he murmured, beginning to move again, repeating the motion that was so hard for able body me, and easy for challenged him. Another two minutes passed in utter silence. Stopping as suddenly as the first time, he glared at me longer, his green eyes darkening, as they penetrated through me, to my core.
“Why?” he asked once more.
“Why do you care?”
“Because you are interesting.”
“You have no fear?”, he questioned, surprised
“I feel no reason to fear you.”
He stroked his hair away from his misshapen cheek bones, pinning it behind his large ears, nodding, then with what was a twisted smile, that despite its broken shaped showed a kindness, apparent and deep.
“Then forgive me, my Lady. You have nothing to fear. And you owe me nothing for my work.”, his voice stronger this time, as he straightened as much as he was able to.
I smiled back at him, stretching my hand toward the old figure in front of me.
“So I shall give you my friendship, dear Sir, if you wish.”
“I would be honored indeed.”
We shook hands, swiftly, with the same efficiency, with which he had moved the spindle.
“What may I call you Sir?”, I dared to asked?
I did not write my gratitude lists on the blog this week, not for Thursday, Friday, nor Saturday but I am using Thanksgiving as my excuse. Those three days belonged to my family. I hope you had a wonderful celebration, and were able to connect with your loved ones.
Because of this, I am going to share parts of my gratitude list with you today, and hope you will take a moment to reflect upon what you are grateful for as well.
- I am grateful for my oven, which has been and will continue to be used in over-abundance until
all of the winter holidays have left us. I might gain some weight, as a result, but that is what new years resolutions are for.
- I am grateful for my husband’s business partner (and who happens to be my boss), who send me a pretty nice text message out of the blue on Thanksgiving, saying how thankful he was, that we are helping him with the business. It is nice to be appreciated.
- I am grateful for Canva and Picmonkey, which I used to make the typography throughout this post. Both have free versions (I use premium on both), that are wonderful for bloggers, especially now that my computer is acting up. I really do not want to fight with any more complicated programs, like Photoshop or Illustrator, when I have a laptop complicating things.
- I am grateful for that adorable not so little dog, with white eyes, who seems to have taking a liking to me. It belongs to a neighbor, but every time she sees me, she acts like my dogs do, after I been gone for a couple of hours. That is so cute. I tried to take a picture of her, but she is too hyper to hold still long enough I think she adopted me.
This has turned into a much longer conversation than intended. I am going to let you go, but not before telling you to take some of that Nutella – of course, I made extra.
This blog post is a part of the following blog hops
I decided to try something new this week, venture outside of my artistic comfort zone and embrace the creation of some typographic posters. I do this every once in a while, move my focus upon a subject matter or a creative technique I have never tried before, and dive in. Sometimes, I find myself completely lost and drop it like a hot potato, but other times, like this week, I find a new creative outlet I actually enjoy. I enjoyed it enough to open a printable only Etsy store “No Plain Paper”.
These designs, like all of my other art work, are still available in my RedBubble and Zazzle stores, so you can purchase them on the many applications available there, like mugs, or as gratitude journals.
What do you do to push yourself outside of your comfort zone?
This week is the first time I am participating in the To-Know-Me Tuesday, where we are asked to post 10 things about ourselves.
So here they are:
- I was born in Germany
- My Dad was an organic gardener, in charge of our local gardening club, teaching green gardening techniques. I learned a lot from him on that subject.
- I speed read – not as fast as I would like, yet – but I can get through a full-size novel in about 2 hours.
- I am a fan of Chase Charvis, Gary Vaynerchuk and Tim Ferris
- I can not dance – at all. Neither can my husband, so that works well.
- I wrote, directed and performed in my first play when I was 10
- I want to write the script to a featured film
- I am a published Author. One of my books is available on Amazon
- I can lip-read in two languages – German and English
- I wish there were 36 hours in the day – then I would probably find a way to fill them all, and wish there were 48 hours, lol.
This blog post is a part of the following blog hops:
Hey, nice to see you again, glad you could stop by! I got a hot pot of coffee waiting for us both, and a fresh apple pie, that I made after I bought way too many apples this week. Of course, it is vegan, but you would not be able to tell if I would not point it out. Trust me, I tried it out on a few people. No one could tell the difference.
I would ask you how your Halloween was. Mine was fine and quiet. While the kids did their own thing with their friends, I snuggled up with kindle and read. And of course, I could not stop, and had to force myself to go to bed a little past midnight. It was one of those books that I found on KindleUnlimited and hoped I would enjoy, but at the end not only did I enjoy it, I could not stop reading it. If you love romance novels – the hot and steamy kind, check out “Pretend You’re Mine – A Small Town Love Story” by Lucy Score
Today, I am thankfully only working on my business, and not on the business of a friend, my husband and I are helping to build. So the plan for today is to write on a few blog posts, connect with people and put out a few designs. I have created a few more floral designs this week – as you can see – but I want to play with a few different themes this evening. My problem is sometimes that I have to choose between commercially profitable designs and more experimental and freely expressive designs. When time permits I do both. Lately, time has not been permitting me to just go for it. Hopefully with a little adjustment in my schedule, I will be able to give myself a little space in creating freely this week.
I would tell you that I am considering in committing myself to posting every day of the month of November. NaBloPoMo is upon us, and I feel guilty enough for not participating in NaNoWriMo this month, that I might end up at least doing that challenge. I already had to tell my son, who is a budding writer and often times my soundboard, that I am not working on my books right now, because of all of the other things that need to be done. He understands because he knew our temporary stay here in Las Vegas was for work reasons, and would keep my husband and myself very occupied, yet he loves it when he can help me figure out story lines and makes sure I don’t go too crazy with some of my fantasy elements. I miss that back and forth as well, but hey, one has to make a living – especially if I have three people to get through college in the next few years and our dream home we are going for by 2019 is way up there in price. If we want to pull this off, I have to prioritize. That includes what I can write when.
Speaking of books, I would tell you that I am currently debating on putting “Mixing Spices”, out in print form as well. That will not happen until next year because I need to add more visual elements in order for me to be happy with it, but it is something I am considering. I like eBooks, but I prefer holding a book in my hand, over reading it on a device.
So what are you up to this week? I am looking forward to hearing all about what you did how your Halloween went, and what your plans are for the future. And I do encourage you to share your plans and thoughts with the group. Simply follow this link and add your post. I will try my best to stop by as many blogs as I can throughout this day. Blessings!
Hi, everyone! It is time again to celebrate all that we are thankful for. Please stop by to say hi to Lexa Cain, our wonderful host of the “Celebrate The Small Things” Blog Hop. As always, it is time to share our gratitude, and I hope you will join us!
What am I grateful for this week?
I am grateful that I have had the opportunity to express myself creatively via my art this week, working mainly with flowers, but other subjects as well. I find roses to be my favorite flower to work with. It has been a lot of fun!
I am grateful that a very unique Asian supermarket opened its door in our neighborhood. Their vegetable and fruit selections are enormous, and as vegetarians and vegans our family goes through a lot of vegetables. We are so excited about that. (well, we are foodies, all of us. We used to own a restaurant, so there is no getting us away from food).
I am also grateful that we had a couple days of cooler weather, even though it is back in the mid 90’s, at least we had some heat relief for a brief moment.
What are you grateful for this week? Why not write about it, and share your link with us here. Blessings!
Pixels Hu by Octavi Navarro features fun designs that drew me in because of the artist’s unique ability to draw from video games, and bring that inspiration to life in digital applicable art. I had a chance to connect with him over the last few days and allowed me share some insights into his work and life as an artist.
What is the main inspiration behind your art?
I don’t think I can point out just one source of inspiration. The ideas behind my works always come in a very natural way, sometimes while watching a movie, playing a video game or reading a book. It’s really important for me to tell an interesting story in my illustrations, something that feels touching to me in some way, so these kind of sources are always useful.
What are the techniques you use and why?
I try to get as close as possible to the classic pixel art feeling of the early 90’s video games, but mixed with my own painting techniques. I’m pretty obsessed with lighting and shadows so I use the techniques that allow me to achieve the effects I want, even if it moves away from the “purist” idea of pixel art.
This charming technique is actually one of the aspects that drew me to your art in the first place, so I think you succeeded with your mission. So, how did you get started as an Artist?
As far as I remember I’ve been drawing and painting all my life. I was a very shy kid so I always used my drawings as a way to express myself. While working as a graphic designer in a technology company, I started looking for illustration clients and that’s how I started my career as a freelance children’s books illustrator. I had lots of fun those years but at one point I wanted to make something more personal. Something that really talked about my personality and my feelings. Pixel art was the best medium I could think of to make that possible.
How can people get in contact with you?
I can be contacted from wy website: www.pixelshuh.com
Also, I try to be pretty active on the social networks too, so people can find me on Twitter (@pixelshuh), Facebook (www.facebook.com/pixelshuh), Behance (www.behance.net/onavarro), Dribbble (dribbble.com/pixelshuh), DeviantArt (octavinavarro.deviantart.com), Pinterest (www.pinterest.com/octavinavarro), and of course Redbubble (www.redbubble.com/people/pixelshuh).
Those who like my work can also support it on Patreon: www.patreon.com/pixelshuh
Thank you for taking the time to sit down with me today!
As always, please remember to support independent artists. Independent artists create a unique variety of creative art pieces, that are always worth a second look. You can find something for every taste and in every style. Thank you!
I ran across Artification (aka Fliss) in my quest of looking for an addition to my growing designer Mug collection, and was immediately drawn to the vivid colors of this artist’s creation. I knew I had to share her creative talent with you. Her work is exceptionally detailed, and very inviting. Let me introduce her to you:
Hi Fliss, thank you for taking the time out of your busy schedule to answer a few questions. As I mentioned already to my readers, I was drawn to your colorful art from the moment I saw it. What is the main inspiration behind your art?
I love looking at vintage and retro designs or old fashioned kids picture books and always find myself inspired by them. I must say though that every time I go shopping I find myself taking mental notes on what sort of thing is trending so that I can try and keep current and with the times. You will see from my stores, that I tend to favor retro patterned graphics and cute fun whimsy kids stuff.
What are the techniques you use and why?
My artwork is all produced digitally; I love to play about and experiment with different styles/effects and mix them up until I find something which is pleasing to the eye. I would have loved to be a proper artist painting and drawing freehand, but this is the next best thing for me.
How did you get started, as an Artist?
I am not sure I would call myself an artist but I got started about 4 years ago quite my accident when my partner brought me some software to edit his photographs so that I could try and sell them on-line. I started to play about with the software learning all sorts of things and soon found myself uploading my own designs to sell on-line instead of editing his photos; although I do still put a few of his photos on as well. I love designing and although I know I am not the best by far I think I have come on leaps and bounds since I first started and I am learning more and more all the time.
What do you like about placing your art on RedBubble?
I love how easy it is on Redbubble to put an image on all the products in one go only having to put the tags and description in once, it saves so much time and leaves more free time for designing.
Are you on any other Product on Demand site?
My main Product on Demand site is Zazzle where I have been selling for just over three years and I am happy there but have recently started to place my designs on more sites; as well as Redbubble I have stores on PAOM (Print All Over Me), live Heroes, Woven Monkey, Grab Your Design and Art Of Where.
How can people get in contact with you?
via my Blog
via my FaceBook
and via my Zazzle Store
Thank you for this insightful interview.
I hope you enjoyed this interview as much as I have. Please remember to support independent artists with your purchasing choices. YOU make a difference.
P.S. The above interview contains affiliate links.
1. Make what you love
So your art does not fit exactly into the current trend. You have a choice to make, create something that you think will fit in, or showcase your unique voice. Please, dear artists, remember that people love your uniqueness and recognize a truth within the representation of your vision, that you created. A well-designed piece of art can become more popular than the one fitting into the masses
2. Pay attention to details
Of course, you pay attention to details when it comes to creating your unique piece of art, but are you also paying attention to how each individual application fits with your art? Some art pieces are just not made for cell phone cases while others will showcase their entire beauty on any application. Choose where you put your creative piece as thoroughly as you do during your creative process.
3. Connect with other artists
When I first started out on RedBubble, I thought of it as a lonely place, until I began connecting with other artists, by commenting on each others projects, or participating in the forums. The exchange of energy with like-minded individuals is very inspiring, as well as a learning experience. Take also advantage of the groups and forums out there outside of your platform, with Facebook groups being one example.
4. Connect with your audience
Reach out to your potential audience by learning how to maneuver throughout the various social media outlets. Learn proper etiquette, by not spamming your followers, and really engage. With the right techniques, you can gather a substantial amount of attention if you learn the tricks of the individual platforms. Marketing your products is just as important as creating them.
5. Be specific in your listings and product description
Write the description as if the customer would have no picture available and you would have to describe your creation to them. Use keywords that are related to your products (watch out for spamming keywords – only use those actually related to what you have done. Platforms like Zazzle frown upon the overuse of misguided keywords), and be specific about mentioning your targeted audience.
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