Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Kinobo Oil Painting

I got a new webcam. It is a plug and play webcam from Kinobo.  It was reviewed as simple and sturdy and that is what it is.  It has also got a unique design.
I decided to use it for oil painting practice.  The paintings not finished but this is where I am.  I thought I would put something with it and that ended up being a clove of garlic.

Kinobo webcam garlic clove

10'' x 10'' oil on canvas. About 4 hours.
By the way as it is a cam this is what it looks like from the webcams point of view.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Webpage Designs

One of the ways in which the Irish Government has hoped to spark the entrepreneurial spirit is though the enterprise boards.  Each county has its own board which is responsible for disseminating information, training and grants to aid small and medium local businesses.  One of the by products is that each board has a website to provide information.  Rather than a single template it looks like each board has come up with their own web design.  This provides a great example of different design approaches to fulfill the same brief.  There are 35  in total

Below are a sample of those available.

On the downside is that the Donegal agency responsible  for creating employment chose to outsource their design effort to a company based in Derry which is across the border in the UK. It looks great but, really?  

By the way if you are in Roscommon and you need this service you better get out that pen and notepad. 

There is election talk that some of this carry on will be reformed.  With unemployment coming close to 15 %, I hope so.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Powerful Illustration

In todays media rich world it is hard to think of a situation when an illustration will convey brand new information to an audience.  The only occasion that comes to mind in modern times is the use of court illustrations.  For an entertaining collection of such images go here.  

While watching a science documentary I was very impressed with the images created by Galileo Galilei . Famous for promoting the idea of the sun at the center of the solar system.  His evidence was gathered using telescopes he built.  With magnifications of between 20-32 times magnification he turned his attention to the moon and produced the first depictions of the moons surface.  Until this the moon was considered to have a smooth surface.  In his book "Sidereus Nuncius" translated to the romantic sounding "The Starry Messenger" he presented his accomplished illustrations. 

Now let us review the observations made during the past two months, once more inviting the attention of all who are eager for true philosophy to the first steps of such important contemplations. Let us speak first of that surface of the moon which faces us, For greater clarity I distinguish two parts of this surface, a lighter and a darker; the lighter part seems to surround and to pervade the whole hemisphere, while the darker part discolors the moon's surface like a kind of cloud, and makes it appear covered with spots. Now those spots which are fairly dark and rather large are plain to everyone and have been seen throughout the ages; these I shall call the "large" or "ancient" spots, distinguishing them from others that are smaller in size but so numerous as to occur all over the lunar surface, and especially the lighter part. The latter spots had never been seen by anyone before me. From observations of these spots repeated many times I have been led to the opinion and conviction that the surface of the moon is not smooth, uniform, and precisely spherical as a great number of philosophers believe it (and the other heavenly bodies) to be, but is uneven, rough, and full of cavities and prominences, being not unlike the face of the earth, relieved by chains of mountains and deep valleys . . . .

Another article in Time explores Gallileo as an artist.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Green peppers Watercolour pencils

I have been trying out some watercolour pencils with varying results.  This one of the first attempts.  It is of peppers which I completed about 6 months ago.  I went for saturation but maybe something subtler may have been more effective.  The pencils are great though. 

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Speed paint

Speed paint 90 min in Photoshop from photo.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Visualising Data

One of the biggest difficulties I think people have had understanding the economic story that has developed in Ireland in the past 2 years are the scale of numbers.  I heard recently about a solution a designer, David McCandless, had created a solution for getting that kind of information across in a glance.  
The Billion Pound -O-Gram is it