A Reason For My Absence

Alright, life has taken on a whole new meaning of hectic. Ash and I recently took in three strays: a four month old, thirty pound Irish wolfhound mix and a mother cat and her kitten. This brings up our total amount of furry kids to three dogs, six cats, two ferrets, three rats, and two fish. Our house is absolutely insane. To top it off, Ash’s laptop is out of commission and she’s been using mine for her work – which I’m fine with since it has allowed me to focus more on art and catching up with reading materials, but it means I’ve had to take a break from twitter and some designs I was working on.

Anyway, Ash and I recently took the three strays to the vet and spent a little over $160 to make sure all three were healthy. The cats were strays, but the puppy was obviously someone’s pet – only we’ve had him for five, six days now and nobody has called in a lost dog anywhere. We’ve checked the paper, the shelters, animal control, etc, and yet nothing. Unfortunately, we can’t really afford the bill, having just paid the vet even more money on our rats and our oldest dog, so we’re asking for donations from other animal lovers to help us get these rescued animals fixed up for their future owners (since we can’t keep them ourselves, we’re fostering them until we can find them new homes).



All donations will go straight to the vet bills, to get vaccinations, get tests, etc. Anything helps – even $5 goes far. I usually don’t like asking for money, but this is for such a good cause and we really can’t do this without your help. Also, if anyone is interested in a puppy or a couple of cute kittens, let us know. ;D If you want to know more about these cute kids, go check out the blog over at our rescue site I Love Rescue Animals.

Snarf the Pup
The Kittens

Hopefully this all explains why I haven’t been online and why I’m pushing my ComicCon Contest back a few days. I just can’t keep up with things right now – our house is a mad house and there is far too much to do offline. I hope you can understand. I’m sure you will. I can’t say no to a fluffy puppy face. Who can?

Comic Con Contest: Win Hancock!

hancockComic Con is very quickly approaching. On July 23-26th, nerds, geeks, and weirdos will descend upon San Diego, CA and make the dorkiest of us all look like true heroes with their time-consuming costumes and Styrofoam swords. While I wish more than anything that I could be there to proudly show that girls can be comic geeks too (I would totally go as Gabi from Xena), I sadly do not have the funds this year. However, I thought I could celebrate the coming of Comic Con by holding a little contest.

The Contest!

Next Tuesday, I shall be posting a list of my favorite super heroes in the comic book industry. At the end of the post, I shall be holding a contest. The winner of the contest will receive a brand new DVD copy of Hancock: 1-Disc Unrated Edition. Hancock is a movie about a down-and-out super hero who has kind of fallen to the wayside until a friendly publicist decides to turn things around for him. It features Will Smith and Charlize Theron.

To win, the rules are simple. All you’ll have to do is leave a comment with the name of YOUR favorite super hero and tell me why. Why am I posting this now? Well to give you a better chance of winning, comment on this entry (doesn’t have to be about anything in particular), and you’ll be entered in the drawing twice! As long as you comment on the actual contest entry, of course. I will then take each entry and, using a random generator, I shall choose the winner. How does that sound? Exciting right? Who doesn’t like watching Will Smith being an ornery super hero along side hot blond Charlize Theron? Yeah, I thought so.

So comment here, and then next Tuesday, keep your eyes peeled for my official Contest Post and you could be the winner of a brand new Hancock DVD!

12 Great Web Links and a Puppy

I generally try to post every weekday, but yesterday and today I’ve been out of it with a sinus infection, making it hard to hear, breathe, sit up, and pretty much function normally. So as a cop-out, have a list of good blog links that I’ve enjoyed lately.

01. Twitter Face-Off: Calvin Lee vs. Andy Sowards from Grace Smith.
02. Creative Tips for Creative Writing from Blellow.
03. The Simple Fitness Rules from Zen Habits.
04. 5 Things I’ve Learned Working Freelance from Sabrina Dent
05. Should You Write Blog Posts on the Weekend from Tim Scullin
06. Creative 404 Error Pages Around for Inspiration from Instant Shift
07. Quick Tip #34 for Rounding the Corners from Niki Brown
08. 5 Things Sesame Street Can Teach You About Breakthrough Blogging from CopyBlogger
09. 66 High Resolution Nature Desktop Backgrounds from 1st Web Designer
10. Top 10 Ways to Provoke a Geek Argument from Wired
11. 25 Excellent Typography Tools for the Serious Designer from 6Revisions
12. The Stunning Work of Chris McVeigh from Abduzeedo

Also want to mention that I was one of the 55 twitterers in Grace Smith’s 55 Twitterers Share Their Freelancing Memories. Great article and some great memories shared. Check it out and enjoy the other articles as well. I’m off to pass out in bed.

rufusknit

Or go knit in bed with a very cute Rufus puppy (who is, of course, one of the best cuddle buddies you could ask for when you’re sick) and watch some Xena. I really watch that show for Gabi. Can’t help it, she’s hot.

A Note About Iran

The following post is a copy-and-paste message from one_hoopy_frood about what is going on in Iran and why you should care. A lot of people still don’t know about everything that is happening over seas, but here’s a rough summary that should put you in the know. My heart is with the people of Iran right now. I hope we can help get you out of this mess.

If you are reading this right now, you have more luxury than someone in Iran could ever hope for right now. If you are watching TV or a video on youtube, updating your status on Facebook, Tweeting, or even texting your friend, you are lucky. If you are safe in your home, and were able to sleep last night without the sounds of screaming from the rooftops, you need to know and understand what is happening to people just like you in Iran right now.

They are not the enemy. They are a people whose election has been stolen. For the first time in a long time, a voice for change struck the youth of Iran, just as it did for many people in the United States only seven months ago. Hossein Mousavi gained the support of millions of people in Iran as a Presidential candidate. He stands for progressiveness. He supports good relations with the West, and the rest of the world. He is supported with fervor as he challenges the oppressive regime of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.

On Friday, millions of people waited for hours in line to vote in Iran’s Presidential election. Later that night, as votes came in, Mousavi was alerted that he was winning by a two-thirds margin. Then there was a change. Suddenly, it was Ahmadinejad who had 68% of the vote – in areas which have been firmly against his political party, he overwhelmingly won. Within three hours, millions of votes were supposedly counted – the victor was Ahmadinejad. Immediately fraud was suspected – there was no way he could have won by this great a margin with such oppposition. Since then, reports have been coming in of burned ballots, or in some cases numbers being given without any being counted at all. None of this is confirmed, but what happened next seems to do the trick.

The people of Iran took the streets and rooftops. They shout “Death to the dictator” and “Allah o akbar.” They join together to protest. Peacefully. The police attack some, but they stay strong. Riots happen, and the shouting continues all night. Text messaging was disabled, as was satellite, and websites which can spread information such as Twitter, Facebook, Youtube, and the BBC are blocked in the country. At five in the morning, Arabic speaking soldiers (the people of Iran speak Farsi) stormed a university in the capital city of Tehran. While sleeping in their dormitories, five students were killed. Others were wounded. These soldiers are thought to have been brought in by Ahmadinejad from Lebanon. Today, 192 of the university’s faculty have resigned in protest.

Mousavi requested that the government allow a peaceful rally to occur this morning – the request was denied. Many thought that it would not happen. Nevertheless, first a few thousand people showed up in the streets of Tehran. At this point, it is estimated that 1 to 2 million people were there. Mousavi spoke on the top of a car. The police stood by. For a few hours, everything was peaceful. Right now, the same cannot be said. Reports of injuries, shootings, and killings are flooding the internet. Twitter has been an invaluable source – those in Iran who still know how to access it are updating regularly with picture evidence. People are being brutally beaten. Tonight will be another night without rest for so many in Iran no older than I am. Tonight there is a Green Revolution.

For more information:
PICTURES:
here and here
NEW INFORMATION:
Here – near constant updates
Here – ONTD_political live post
ON TWITTER:
@StopAhmadi, @ProtesterHelp


دنیارابگوییدچطورآنهاانتخاباتمان دزدیده اند
“Tell the world how they have stolen our election.”

5 Ways to Make a Happier Day

Beautiful LifeMondays are generally the most stressful day of the week (and Tuesdays, and Wednesdays, and – well, weekdays can just be bad), and if you’re like me and tend to just drag at the beginning of the week, then you might find it useful to do a few things that make yourself feel good. And what better way to make yourself feel good but by making other people (or animals) feel good. So here’s a short list of some things you can do during your day to make the world a better place with just a few small well-placed happy gestures.

01. Smile.

Really. That’s it. Ever hear that smiling is contagious? It’s true. You smile at her, she smiles at him, he smiles at someone else, and it just keeps going. A smile is a good thing. Do it. It can brighten the darkest of days and the crankiest of souls.

Click here to continue reading this article.

Design Coyote Sneakpeak

I am currently doing a major rehaul of my design site Design Coyote and I thought I’d give you a sneak peak of of my changes so far. It’s not a big sneak peak, but it’s better than nothing right?

Yeah, I know you’re all dying in your seats. Here it is.

Design Coyote Sample

See? Not as big and impressive, but trust me, the new design and the new layout will be a huge improvement over the old-fashioned blog design I’ve got going over there. It’ll look snazzier, more professional, and of course will feature all the information you need to get yourself an artsy, creative design for your personal site.

Hopefully within the next few weeks, the new DC will go live. Cross you fingers!

New Rescue Animals Site is Live!

That’s right folks! The much talked about and hyped up website for I Love Rescue Animals is fully re-hauled and ready for action. Ash and I have put so much time and energy into this. What was once just a blog is now a complete website and growing database for Animal Organizations and Shelters. We’re pulling together as many resources as we can, but we need your help!

I Love Rescue Animals

Our Mission: We are dedicated to celebrating rescued animals, supporting shelters, rescues and animal rights groups and to animal welfare worldwide. We seek to raise awareness within our communities and to work towards a future where all animal owners are responsible and we no longer have to make the choice to put down otherwise adoptable animals simply due to a lack of space and resources. We also strongly believe in spaying and neutering your animals to help reduce the number of homeless animals.

Please visit our site. Things you can do to help us: Provide content for the blog. Send links to fill our databases of Organizations, Rescues and Shelters, and Helpful Resources. Submit your rescue story and picture of your pet. Advertise your animal-related products and let us do product reviews. Donate. Send us feedback on what else you would like to see on ILRA. Anything will help! Let’s bring this site together for the benefit of all animals out there in need of homes.

Please take some time and visit I Love Rescue Animals!

Artist Showcase: Anne-Julie Aubry

It may be a coincidence, or it may not be, but today I received in the mail the necklace I won from Anne-Julie Aubry (who happens to be the top illustrator on twitter that I posted about). I took this as a sign, so today’s artist showcase will be Anne-Julie Aubry!

Anne-Julie is an amazing illustrator and I highly recommend you check out her website and gallery. She is also a talented jewelry designer and sometimes her work can be found on her etsy shop the Nebulous Kingdom. Her work is so simple yet complex, so innocent but filled with deep meaning. Her color palette is subtle, soft, and fantastical. I just love it.

Last month I took part in a contest on her blog and ended up winning the prize: a beautiful antique-looking necklace with two of Anne-Julie’s prints inside: “Becoming a Puppet” and “La Sorcière Noire.” It wasn’t just the necklace she sent me; I also received her Mother Nature Postcard and a gorgeous little bag that the necklace came in. The whole package was put together with such thought that I felt the need to take a picture to share with you.

Necklace
Necklace

Isn’t that just breath-taking? I love it. Thank you so much Anne-Julie for the wonderful prize. It is a beautiful giveaway. I hope you continue making beautiful art for as long as you live. You have a great talent.

You can find Anne-Julie Aubry at the following sites:
Blog: Ma Petite Theiere
Website: Anne-Julie Art
Etsy: The Nebulous Kingdom
Twitter: @annejulieart

12 Illustrators to follow on Twitter

Who are your favorite illustrators? Are they on twitter? Well, I can’t tell you for sure if they are, but I can give you some names of other illustrators who grace the pages of Twitter with their wonderful artwork. Here are 12 of my favorite illustrators that you can add as well.

01. @annejulieart
Anne-Julie Art
Name: Anne-Julie Aubry
Website: Ma Petite Theiere

Click here to continue reading this article.

The Beauty of Design

Design

“Design in art, is a recognition of the relation between various things, various elements in the creative flux. You can’t invent a design. You recognize it, in the fourth dimension. That is, with your blood and your bones, as well as with your eyes.” -D. H. Lawrence