Finally, after months of waiting, I have found time to make the first of many new tutorials for the “This Is How We Do It” page. I created a new category for miscellaneous photoshop tricks and made the first six movies of what will hopefully be a very long list of cool tips. I hope you like them. I am still struggling with how to teach light painting via screen captures, but those tutorials should be coming soon too. (I am still learning the art of making screen capture tutorials, so don’t be surprised if mine are in need of work)
On another note, I shuffled pages a little. I created the new “Resources” page, which leads to a modified version of the the old “Inspiration” page and the new “Tutorials and Helpful Sites” page. This new page, which is quite empty at the moment, will hopefully soon feature links to many tutorials and sites from various sources across the internet. For the time being, all these pages will be very sparse, but they should grow rapidly as we discover new, and remember old, sources of inspiration and education.
“The man who does not read good books has no advantage over the man who cannot read them.”
I have had this quote hung on my wall for years, along with a picture of Mark Twain, and have just recently taken meaning to it. Some interpret it differently than others, but I believe I have found its true meaning (No, it’s not just about books, well at least I don’t think so).
Life is full of opportunities and adventures. Take them! The only way to live life, is by living it. When an opportunity arrises, you don’t want to regret, in the future, that you didn’t take advantage of it. Even if the opportunity is something that doesn’t completely strike your attention, do it anyway. It won’t hurt you, I promise. If it does turn out to be a bust, you will still gain something from the experience. These experiences are usually what we look back to, as the good times of our lives.
All I’m trying to say is, don’t be afraid! You will only hurt yourself by not trying. So, go out and ‘read a book.’
*I hope everyone had a great time at Sweethearts!
To my disappointment, I learned on Friday that there was to be no Mac Lab Saturday School™ today. Too bad. Well, at least I got to sleep in. As I mentioned before, I plan to make this weekend very productive, so I wasted no time getting to work. From the time I woke up, which was a little before noon, I have been sitting in front of my 27 inch iMac, burning my retinas out. I started by unloading the pictures that Kyle, Cameron, and I took yesterday.
My friend and fellow Mac Lab student Cameron Rabell accompanied Kyle and I on our trip downtown yesterday, where we took about 40 pictures of the sites located between the Star of India and the USS Midway. As I unloaded the images early this afternoon, I was mildly disappointed. Most of them didn’t turn out, as we had been taking long exposures and the wind was blowing, so things (like boats) moved (and were therefore blurry). Also, we intended the images to be light paintings, but they turned out more like regular photographs, just at night. A couple did turn out interesting, and I took one into Photoshop today and edited it a little. The result is featured on this post.
After that, or maybe before, I can’t remember, I did the rounds on all my favorite sites, including the blogs of Christian Lim, Fadi George, and Philip Behnam. I decided to make a new “Inspiration” widget in the right sidebar, which I populate with some of the links from the Inspiration page. I also added links to the sites of five Mac Lab students to the Inspiration page and widget: Christian Lim, Danny Owens, Diana I, Fadi George, and Philip Behnam.
After that, I did a little bit of file management on my iMac and took an hour break for lunch. (CRDESIGNLAB has over 25GB of files so far. Luckily we have the 50GB version of DropBox and luckily my iMac has 1.55 terabytes of space left. At this rate, I will have to buy the 100GB upgrade for DropBox in a few weeks.)
Next, I went through the five images Kyle and I have ready to print and did some resizing and finishing. We hope to print these images next week, but that is what we have been saying for the last two weeks. Mr. Skocko, if you are reading this, please don’t let Kyle and I leave school on Monday without talking to you about printing. Basically, I completely remade the print layout for all five images so that they are the same width, have the same size borders, titles, and subtitles, and have text of the same color. I think the result is a good improvement. I still have to decide if one more of my images is good enough for print. Diana I. has told me on many occasions that she thinks the Shoe picture is one of my best, and I agree. It is has not been included in the original list of photos to be printed because Kyle doesn’t like it. Well, I will definitely try to print a copy for myself.
Then I went to work on the task Mr. Skocko gave in this comment and decided to submit the Bridge, Cars, Purple Building, and Street_02 images, for now. I resized them in Photoshop and put them in a dedicated folder in DropBox. By then, it was 6:00 pm and I had been working for six hours, with a one hour break. At that point, I started writing this post. Now it is almost 7:30, so I have been working for seven and a half hours with a one hour break. I would change this post’s title, but then it would have less meaning.
Some people might wonder why I would want to spend all this time working on stuff for the Mac Lab on a weekend? I type away right now, when I could be playing XBox or watching TV, or talking to friends, or at a movie, because for me, this is just as fun. I love the Mac Lab. I love working in the Mac Lab. I love working and seeing the beautiful result. I love trying to be brilliant. I sit here and type because for me, there is nothing I would rather be doing. For me, I wish it were 7 am not 7 pm, that way I would have more time to work. I wish I could work like this forever. I wish I could do more.
And so I restart my favorite iTunes playlist for the third time, and get back to work.
Update: I call it a day at 9:30, after eight and a half hours of work.
Part 1: The Big 1/12th
2,662 hits. (palindrome)
It make you wonder what the future holds in store.
Part 2: Standing Against Yoda
Well, as you may have guessed from the seemingly random facts listed about, this blog is now one month old. Actually, it turned 1/12th at about 3pm.
I have talked quite a lot about the direction that CRDESIGNLAB will be taking both here and here, and so I won’t bore you with any more repetitive details. I would just like to add that with every passing day, I become more and more devoted to expanding and improving this young site. With every passing day, I realize just how much potential the 2.0 web holds, and how with a little hard work, almost anything is possible. With every passing day, I become more and more enlightened as to the possibilities that exist within the Mac Lab. And with every passing day, I try harder and harder to make CRDESIGNLAB the best it can be by being the best I can be, by being everything that the Mac Lab is about, and I do so with a happiness and sense of gratification that I do not get anywhere else.
And that is why this site is great. Because I try to be great. I try. And sometimes I succeed, and sometimes I fail. Luckily for me, my successes are far more numerous than my failures.
On Saturday, I commented on Philip Behnam’s brilliantly beautiful new blog header pattern and I asked him how he managed to change the header. He said the setting was in the appearance menus. I looked, but to no avail. I desperately wanted to trash the horrid grey gradient that had been sitting atop CRDESIGNLAB for a month, and so I turned to my last resort: Cascading Style Sheets (CSS). I bought the CSS Styles upgrade for WordPress a while back, but to be honest, code kind of scares me, so I have been reluctant to delve into it. I decided I would brave the unknown and try to dig the code for the header out of the current theme’s CSS, and as you can see, I succeeded. I was ecstatic! I left a jubilant comment on Philip’s blog and literally jumped for joy. I had actually, on my own, figured out how to make something happen by using code! Man, I was happy. And to be completely honest, it was a piece of cake. It took me two minutes and the result was really cool. The moral of this seemlingly pointless little anecdote is that I TRIED!!!! For two minutes, I gave it my all and to my great surprise, I succeeded. Whoever heard of such a thing!!!
Basically, I am trying to tell all of you people who are sitting there thinking “how in the world did they do that stuff” or “how in the world did they find the time” or “how in the world are they so smart” to take a moment to try. Just try to do something. Anything. Just not nothing. I challenge you, I dare you, to put forth some effort and I guarantee you will be shocked at the outcome.
Yoda (from Star Wars) said “Try not. Do or do not. There is no try.” I would like to think of Yoda as a wise old Jedi Master, as his 900 years surely lent him some experience, but I stand conflicted on this statement of his. I believe there is a “try”, and I also believe that if you “try”, the “do” will come naturally. I believe that you cannot have the “do” without the “try”. And so I think the Master is wrong, in a sense. Trying is part of doing. And the latter cannot exist without the first. And the first inevitably leads to the latter. Did I forget to mention that I like circular logic?
Bottom line: try.
Man, ranting is fun! And shockingly tangential sometimes. I started out talking about the blog and ended by telling you to try. It’s it amazing how the lessons of the web 2.0 world can be so relevant in daily life.
Part 3: The Lines of Light
Now for the feature of today’s post. The featured photo was taken when Kyle and I went to downtown on 1/17/2010. The 43 second exposure captured cars as they drove past and then stopped at the red light. It is not as good as a few of the other light painting we did that day, but I think the cars make it very cool. Also, during the car ride downtown, we opened the shutter for twenty seconds or so at a time and captured the lights of the cars moving down the highway. The results of four such experiments are now on the light painting gallery, along with the car picture. I don’t want to devote too much time to these images, as the tangential point of today’s post is discussed above in Part 2.
Well, I guess that is all. I kind of exploded into my computer during 7th period today, and this post was the result. The title was the last thing I wrote, because I feel like that simply is what this post is. My mind exploded. I just threw a bunch of stuff at you. Now do with it what you wish.
As this blog grows, we will compile a page filled with the resources that we have found especially useful. Whenever we add to this page, we will post as update.