Thursday, February 28, 2019

The Redress Project, Ironworks, Favorite Reader & Bud

Glorious sunshine! But high winds. In spite of that we decided a walk to the National Mall was the best choice this morning. The city was very busy as Thursdays ususally are. There were several people at the American Indian Museum putting up what seemed to be a display of some kind. We found a sign that explained the “Redress Project.” There were many red dresses on hangers and display stands signifying the plight of non indigenous women and violence. It will be on display until March 31. At the Hirshhorn gardens the metal works stood out against the bright light - on benches and wall hangings. We hadn’t seen our favorite reader sitting by the Smithsonian castle for awhile. This stylish older woman parks herself in the sunshine to read the morning paper. And there she was in one of her many fabulous winter coats. The magnolia buds were getting almost ready to pop - and I found one starting to peep out. The wind was at our back on the way home. I always prefer going back towards home rather than heading out - even if the sights were as interesting as today. 

Tuesday, February 26, 2019

Beyer Subaru Forester 48,000 Mile Check

I don’t mind missing a morning walk. But having to go to the Subaru dealer for a check up isn’t my idea of a good time. It’s during morning rush that we drive over so we need to give ourselves at least 45 minutes to get to Alexandria. We try not to get a loaner because we don’t like parking it in the neighborhood where it could potentially get dinged and nicked with street parking. Since we only have one car we just sit in the waiting room until the work is done. It’s also the only place that we get a latte. I’m not much of a coffee drinker anyway. Once in a while having a frothy milky coffee seems like a good idea. Since the guest internet connection isn’t the best I always use my own hotspot. We find the tv being on a distraction, but someone always has to have it on at a higher than necessary volume. I’m just hoping the check goes without a hitch so we can get out of here in short order. Then hopefully we can go out for lunch somewhere afterwards. Last year our Subaru had several visits to the shop. Let’s hope 2019 is better. 

Monday, February 25, 2019

A Very Sunny & Windy Day in the Neighborhood

When we drove home last night after dinner we made sure we found a parking spot far away from a tree. The winds were gusting to 45 mph. That also made morning walking a bit of a trick. But at least today the strange object we call the sun was out after hiding most of this year. So we took our chances and ventured out wearing our warmest jackets and lumberjack hats. The Midwest is faring far worse, which is one of the main reasons we left. Rather than go to the National Mall, we walked north and south adjacent to any barricade. So we strolled through the NE neighborhood past Union Station. We usually go that way during the summer months to stay under tree coverage to avoid the uniquely hot and humid environment. When it’s really bad we walk in the air conditioned Union Station. There is always something interesting about the architecture - and spring - that make the views interesting. Although now we are much less enamored by the typical Capitol Hill vibe. The congestion of the streets and the hazards that come with living in 1890’s buildings is taking a toll. So until we decide to do anything about it I will have a lot of photos to look at whenever I get nostalgic. I’m hoping it happens soon. 

Sunday, February 24, 2019

Redbubble Happy Nowruz Persian New Year Mug

I’ve been drawing and painting on my iPad for about six years. A lot of my work is commissioned pet portraits. Once the painting is completed, I upload the digital files to a variety of websites. If someone likes the image enough they can make something out if it - a t shirt, pillow, card... the sky is the limit. The sites I use for this purpose are Fine Art America/Pixels, Zazzle, Amazon Merch, and Redbubble. So rather than have to paint anything, I get a notice from these places whenever something of mine has sold. So it’s always a treat when this happens. Yesterday Redbubble sent an email that someone in the United Kingdom bought a coffee mug with my Persian new year motif. The haft-sin display is actually from a photo my niece sent to us several years ago of their celebration. I also have a Persian art section in my Etsy shop for ready made downloads. These images were painted from photos I took when we were visiting Iran ten years ago. I also have several Washington DC scenes, as well as paintings from the three children’s books I wrote and illustrated. Digitalart is a really great hobby. My studio travels with me wherever I go. It is really exciting to be noticed out of the millions of images out there. Thanks so much for that! 

Friday, February 22, 2019

Redbubble Budgie Sale

We had a blue parakeet when we were small kids. Then we got a blue and green parakeet to replace him. After them, we got a white parakeet - he was mean! The last bird was the best one. Ringo lived a long time and performed many tricks. He talked, rode on the Barbie car steering wheel, and flew to your finger when you called him. One of my commissioned pet portraits is a blue budgie. I usually upload all of my digitalart portraits to websites to showcase them, and sometimes the image is something someone out there really likes. Then they can create whatever product they like using that image. Today I got a notification from Redbubble that someone from the United Kingdom bought a 6 months baby one piece with the blue budgie image on it. It always tickles my fancy whenever I learn that someone liked my work so much that they purchase it for themselves, or give it as a gift. So thank you for noticing my work. I really appreciate it! 

Thursday, February 21, 2019

The Day After the Storm is So Much Better

People are probably sick of snow and ice. I know I am. It’s one of the main reasons we moved from the Midwest. But it is very disappointing to know it snows a lot more here than we thought. And all the winter clothes we needed in the North are needed here - including snow boots. Yesterday was a pain in the neck walking - all the added junk one needs to wear as well as carry an umbrella. I don’t even feel like taking pictures when it’s like that outside. Today was very different. A hint of sunshine (what is that!?) made all the difference in the world. And most of the sidewalks were cleared. Things always look so much better to me in brighter skies - even if it involves snow. It all makes spring seem so much more appealing. We saw our first daffodils, and the little bird baths all seemed to have a snowball in them - they were perfectly placed. The snow design on the bench was different on each one. The path through the rose garden looked all too perfect. The little bulbs were trying very hard to pop. It’s always harder to walk with rain and snow boots so I was happy to get home. Spring can’t come soon enough! 

Wednesday, February 20, 2019

Pinterest Saves, Follows, and Favorites

Aside from all of my digital art websites, I have a lot of different social media outlets to keep up with. One of them is Pinterest. I started using Pinterest several years ago without really knowing what it would do. It included Garden, LIT Capitol Hill, Pet Portraits, LITDigitalArt, Iran, England, France, Copenhagen, and Baseball Autographs Boards. Several boards were made up of photographs I’ve taken while traveling, the rest were art related. Then I changed over to the business version when my digital art was introduced several years ago. So now there are boards from Etsy, cool Stuff, Artist Collab, and other art related subjects. Any time there is activity on these boards I get an email notification about what it was. Someone may have liked a pin, a pin may have been saved, or a weekly activity shows the top pins and impressions. I always try to follow any one who likes anything of mine. Pins of Borzois are saved to “my favorites” board. You can also review your personal stats and do a lot more with Pinterest than I do. One of my dog portraits seems to get the most mileage. The goofy dog portrait gets high marks. It was one of my favorite paintings because looking at that face just makes me smile and I’m guessing it has the same affect on everyone else who likes it. Pinterest is just another way to get noticed, but I’m not so sure it’s translated in to anything more tangible.