While figuring out how I was going to frame Gage’s new room, there was some debate on where the closet door should be, I had my opinion on how it would need to be in order to make best use of the closet space, and Holly and Gage had their opinion on how it needed to be in order for his television to be where he envisioned it. Luckily for me, Holly understands mathematics and once I broke it down into how much the usable storage space was affected just by moving the door from one side to the other, she agreed that it had to be on the side where he wants his television. Once I figured all that out I decided to model the room in order to create accurate materials lists. If I was doing this job for someone else I would be adding 10% to my material estimates to cover anything unseen, but since we have a limited amount of space for spare / scrap wood, and a limited budget, it’s best for me to do it this way and buy only what we need.
I probably could have left the cats’ litter boxes out of the drawing, but it was probably my favourite part if I’m being honest.
For months I haven’t been using the internet at all. It began when I started working full time and my laptop’s video card died. Without the money to replace it, I decided to just take a break from computers completely. After two years of sitting at one all day every day it was something different and nice. For months, the only thing I used a computer or the internet for was logging my hours for work. Then one day Holly got fed up with asking me over and over again to hook up a VPN so we could get US Netflix, and finally told me to get it done before she came home from work that day. It was easier than I thought, and immediately I regretted putting it off so long.
I was shocked at how much Sci-Fi content is available when compared to the Canadian equivalent. I added everything I could think of that I had been missing since I lost all my DVD’s to my ex. The first thing I watched (if you haven’t already guessed) was Stargate SG1 and it’s subsequent films. When I was done, I had the overwhelming urge to try Â and model a decent Stargate. I decided to make an exception to my “No computers / No internet” rule, and fire up the Sketchup for the first time since completing the book.
It took me a few hours to model and texture, the bulk of that time being spent on getting the symbols as accurate as possible, and I’m pleased with how it turned out. I even decided to try something I had never done in Sketchup before, with hopes of animating an active Stargate with ripple-y water event horizon effects. It worked pretty well (as anyone viewing this post in Firefox should be able to tell… everyone else will just have to take my word for it) and gave me lots of ideas for projects in the future. It also made me miss my blog.
I didn’t realize how much I love blogging until I was doing none of it. I constantly longed for the motivation to write about life and what I was doing with it (whether it was models of Stargates, or the latest cute thing Roan said), but I still had no desire to sit at my desk. I hadn’t planned on doing any blogging until I procured a new laptop as I find it more fun to do while relaxing wherever, and not sitting at desk. However, I have had an excess of free time the past few days (explanation to coming soon…) and the boys have been kind enough to share their laptop with me lately (which is getting slightly less frustrating to use all the time!) for some work I’m doing for John Deere (possible explanation coming soon…).
So prepare yourselves internet populous, for I am gearing up to fill in the gaps, and will soon have a powerful new tool at my disposal.
So here’s the just of what’s taken place recently…
The book is finally done! I finished it last week really, but was apprehensive to say anything about it for fear that this was yet another false finish line. For the record, the end was the most painful part, and I am greatly relieved it’s over. Because the book will be printing soon (apparently it takes a month or so to setup, then a month or so to print), and I will be credited for layout and illustrations, I needed to secure a domain I could list in case someone feels like recruiting me for more of this type of work in the future. Fortunately for me, my good friend Jon is fast acting and always willing to help me out. He secured cobraconcepts.ca for me, which will soon be directly linked to my CarbonMade.com portfolio you see in the screenshot above.
On top of finishing the book and setting up my portfolio, I’ve been attending multiple job interviews, doing orientation with ManPower and even working a few days at a shitty job. One would think I was a highly motivated go-getter, but that isn’t the case. In fact, Holly is the one to thank for all the opportunities that have come my way. She’s the one who found the jobs, wrote the cover letters and did her best to keep me positive through the whole process. Although I was incredibly stressed last week, I think things are about to change.
I start a new job on Monday, which in all honesty the only thing I’m looking forward to is the paycheque. I will still do my best, and I’m going to try to stay positive, but I really just want to be swinging a hammer all day. That being said, I need to make money so I’m taking what I can get.
If it wasn’t for Holly I’d only be starting my search this week, and still stressing about not knowing when my next paycheque will come. Now, thanks to her kindness and willingness to help others (especially me), I not only have my last cheque from James coming soon who knows when, I will also have regular weekly paycheques to look forward to.
Money? Lack of Sunday night phone calls?
Alright, so I failed at the catching up on the blog thing the other day. I’ll try again tomorrow. Right now, there is more important things to discuss than my lack of sticktoitivness.
Remember back in January I posted some concepts I had modeled of arcade cabinets, inspired by my favourite games? Well, just yesterday I was playing Call of Duty: Black Ops on the new DLC maps and I noticed something. On the map Drive-In, there is an arcade with some cabinets and a few skee-ball lanes. Two of the arcade cabinets are Call of Duty : World at War “Uber Shooter” machines, which I got incredibly excited to see. I can’t help but wonder if I had something to do with inspiring this prop.
Kotaku posted my designs back in January, and these maps just got released at the end of June. Is it wrong to think that someone from Treyarch saw my design and thought it was a good idea? or is this the ramblings of a depressed egomaniac desperate for some form of recognition?
Last night Roan decided to design the kitties a new tower (above). The plan is to build this for them out of the wood we have left from all the recent repairs. Unfortunately, I don’t think Roan took an accurate survey of the materials at our disposal.
Holly and Roan were watching an episode of Top Gear, so I decided to model an appropriately scaled version of his design. I had to turn his 2D drawing into a 3D model (and take into account a few things he neglected, mainly physics), so I may have messed up the design a little. Roan didn’t seem to mind if I did. He just wanted to know how soon we could start building it. I think I’m just as excited as he is to start building, but we’re both going to have to wait until the foreman gives us the go ahead.
I have built a kitty tower in the past, but this one will be much nicer. I’m far more skilled now, and I have access to a lot more tools. With any luck, the finished product will look professionally made and be butt loads of fun for the entire crew of cobra cats.
In case you missed it, a few weeks ago we had a brutal windstorm which managed to throw Holly’s shed through her back fence, destroying both in the process. Clearly we need a new shed, however we’re having a tough time deciding whether or not to buy one, or if I should build one. The sheds we have looked at thus far have been around the $999.99 – $1299.99 range, none of which are as large as the aluminum monster we had up until two weeks ago.
Yesterday I decided to design a shed for Holly, after seeing how poorly constructed most of the kits you buy from Home Depot are (most had zero supporting members in the corners, and relied solely on the strength of a 90Â° OSB connection, plus trim). None of the sheds they sell use actual 2″ x 4″ lumber. Instead they’ve gone with these 2″ x 3″ (or maybe even 2″ x 2Â½”) studs, rafters, and plates. This might save a bit of money, but I’d much rather build something more solid. Ideally I’d love to finally build this, but that’s not possible at this time. I wanted to get an idea of costs to build a similar design to what Home Depot offers – except good, so Holly got lumber prices yesterday, and now all I have to do is count up all my bits, measure the roof, and add some hardware and finishes and I’ll have an estimate. With any luck it won’t cost as much for the lumber as it does for one of the kits. I’d so much rather build it myself, than assemble a kit.
As I mentioned in a previous post, we recently purchased some Crayola modeling clay for Gage’s school project. When we finished the project we still had a small chunk of the clay left, so I decided to try modeling a robot without the aide of Sketchup. It took me about the same amount of time to model a robot out of clay as it does in Sketchup. There’s quite a lot of differences though, the most obvious being the lack of ability to create perfect symmetry. However, I can put this dude on my desk and he looks cool despite his imperfections.
I hand painted him using Roan’s acrylic paint set. I learned a few things about painting small bits in the process; they are a pain in the ass, patience is important, and it’s best to paint everything separate if possible. I had fun making him, and would like to do a couple more. I asked Holly how much the clay was the other day, and she said “Why, do you want me to buy you some more Play-doh?”, in a voice that implied I was a child. I’m not too proud to admit it. I do.
My progress on the book continues to be slow going, but I’m nearly finished with the layout for the bulk of the book. I have about 12 more bents images to include, then it’s just the appendixes, glossary, table of contents and index (which sounds like a lot, but since it’s mostly text and few images, the process is fairly quick and painless). James has been making less and less changes, which is great for me. The other day however, he faxed me some drawings he forgot he needed. They were all super simple, taking me about an hour in total.
The most complex of the bunch was the logo above. No, it’s not a masonic symbol, nor does it have anything at all to do with masonry. I say that because it seems any time I wear my ISBA shirt I have to explain to some mason why their logo has nearly no relevance to their organization, and why someone who uses a square and scribe (the two main components of any masonic symbol) on a daily basis, should have the right to using similar symbols for their logos. This logo shows a round log with a perfect timber inside, a square and scribe, and the all important center line(s).
The other images I had to create are for the new “Perspective” sections in the book. They were mostly images of different post and beam and bents styles. The two above are German post and beam styles. The one on the left is called Geschossbau, and from what I can tell from this image is it’s basically the balloon framing equivalent for post and beam. The one on the right is called Stockwerksbau, and is more platform style. Most of this probably isn’t interesting at all to the average blog reader, but I dig it.
There was also a few images of different bent configurations. Surprisingly I was already familiar with each design, even before I took any timber framing course. It’s the one thing I found out on my own back when I did my first research into post and beam for a project I had to do at Niagara College. Speaking of which, I just recently discovered I still have that project… perhaps I’ll post it here sometime. It’s probably on par with the excitement level of the majority of my posts about building stuff.
My shirt design was rejected. Apparently I should have submitted it for criticism before submitting it for voting. I kind of thought voting was, in a sense, criticism, but no. I then decided to submit a few other designs for criticism, and so far I haven’t gotten much feedback. One person told me to colour a button red, another told me to add the words “miss you” to my Atari 2600 controller. That’s it. I’m not really sure what they are looking for I guess, but I’m going to try one more time with the image above. I messed around with it this afternoon when I took a break from the book. I’m guessing it will get little or no feedback as well, but I might as well try.
Holly helped me decide on the image above for my criticism. If anyone reading this wants to help me get one step closer to getting my designs selected for print, then please take a minute and critique my designs. Simply clicking the ‘Awesome, submit this!‘ button will help a great deal. The image is a stock photo threadless.com provides people who are submitting designs. I still doubt I’m going to get any feedback, but I thought I’d useÂ picture with a person this time and see if I got any more attention.
I kind of think I would have gotten more attention with this moustache guy, but I don’t know what is cool apparently. I’ll leave this and my other designs up for a week or two, and if there is no more interest in them I’ll give up.
My brother has been telling me for a long time to submit some of my doodles to threadless.com and see what happens. If you’re not familiar with the site, it’s a place where users submit t-shirt designs which are then voted on by the community. If your design gets enough votes you get some money and the community gets the ability to purchase your design. It’s a pretty cool idea; if it works. It was also sort of a pain in the ass though.
I have to wait a day or two for my design to be approved. Once that happens I have 7 days to get some votes. However, if there is a low amount of votes in the first 24 hours, my design will get pulled. So I’m posting here (and everywhere else I can think of) and hoping people will help me out even if they hate my design. I know it’s a pain in the ass to go join a site and then fill out a poll, but it would keep me from bitching about money all the time both here and in ‘real life’. I’m sure everyone else is just as tired of it as I am. Let’s work together to shut me up!
I wrote a little description to go along with it, but since it’s pending approval you can’t see it, and since I just smoked a joint (something I’ve been doing very little of recently) I can’t really remember it. Something like “Buy this shirt or robots will kill you when they become self aware.”, only more eloquent longer. I’ll post about this again once I get the email telling me I’ve been approved or not.
Remember to vote or robots will calculate your face off.