Archive for the Art Category

My D & D Character

Posted in Art, Entertainment, Gaming, Hobbies, Hobby with tags , , , , , , , , on November 4, 2014 by urbannight

Gothic Beauty Magazine posted an image on Facebook of my current D & D character.

This image was shared via Gothic Beauty Magazine, belongs to Gothic Beauty Magazine and had nothing to do with me.  But she looks a lot like my current D & D character.

This image was shared via Gothic Beauty Magazine on Facebook, it belongs to Gothic Beauty Magazine and had nothing to do with me. But she looks a lot like my current D & D character.

Welcome to the Hot House.

Posted in Art, Photography, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 4, 2014 by urbannight

The new building.

It was a good thing that the new building was open when we went to Lauritzen Gardens. We were thinking that Sundays were free. They used to be. A coworker used to like to go walking on Sundays and would ask my roommate to come with her and he would take photographs. She went because it was a free day as neither she or him had memberships. Either way, this meant we got more value for the price. The main exhibit was very small for the cost of the entrance fee.

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We went into the building and felt an initial blast of hot air. But we went down into the front section, which you can’t see much of in the top photo, and it was nice and cool. There were interesting little places all around.

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There were orchids everywhere….

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There were other plantings as well…

Cyclamens

Cyclamens

Pansy

Pansy

Not to mention water falls and pools…

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More orchids….

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And a fuzzy looking plant…

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And interesting design features…..

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And interesting design features…..

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We then went into the central unit and hit the heat and humidity. This was the hot house and it was totally covered in orchids among some other tropical flowers and plants. The main entrance view was impressive.

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The path went around batches of what I believe are succulents, orchids and various tropical flowers.

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There was one area of plantings that didn’t look like much. I’m guessing they are new or look better at a different time.

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Overall, it was pretty impressive and worth the trip. According to the info, they are expanding the Koi into this tropical area so some of the odd pond space will probably become Koi ponds.

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The third and final area was cooler again but oddly empty, with only a few items scattered about and no real layout or design features at all. It was rather strange really. Perhaps it is simply not finished yet.

Marjorie K Daugherty Conservatory, or the Tropical House and Temperate House as the flyer calls it.

Marjorie K Daugherty Conservatory, or the Tropical House and Temperate House as the flyer calls it.

A Garden of Textiles

Posted in Art, Entertainment, Hobby, Life, Photography with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on November 3, 2014 by urbannight
Scarves, color, and spices were these theme.

Scarves, color, and spices were these theme.

Today, the roommate and I went to Lauritzen Gardens down in the old part of Omaha.  The indoor display was described as a fairy garden.  It was actually all about India, scarves, shawls, sashes, everywhere, draped to make tent like structures around benches and other displays.

It is probably the first time I’ve taken more photos of fabric that flowers at a garden.  There are some flower photos, but that is another story.  Well, two other stories. I’ll focus on this display for now.

Halloween colors and a slightly harvest feel.

Halloween colors and a slightly harvest feel.

It should come as no surprise that the black and orange display was one of my favorites. I’m sure everyone has seen grass grown long enough to go to seed and the while motif on the orange fabric very much looks like grass seeds or some other grain seeds.

Another favorite of mine.

Another favorite of mine.

You can see, there is a reason this looked more like India than a fairy garden. Fall chrysanthemums were everywhere but I didn’t really get and photo of them. I was too busy looking at fabric. There was even a spice market.

The spice market.

The spice market.

Actually, this display made me want to go to a spice shop and since the roommate wanted to go to Rockbrook to get a back up camera battery I did get to go spice shopping. I was out of ground mustard so I got that and two blends, one for meat and a Cajun one I intend to use on pasta.

Yummy!

Yummy!

Hanging over some of the secluded benches were flowers strung up like this….IMG_0130

Hanging from the ceiling were more sashes….IMG_0133

There was even an ornate elephant…IMG_0151

As you can see, not a fairy was in sight. Nothing felt or looked like a fairy garden. But India was well represented. So were salads but that was one of the other stories.

Spider Priestess

Posted in Art, Holiday, Life with tags , , , , , , , , , , , on October 31, 2014 by urbannight
Spider Priestess

Spider Priestess

Is is scary that I can cobble together a very last second costume out of things I find in my purse and on my desk at a moment’s notice?

I really wasn’t prepared this year due to a dislocated elbow two weeks ago and a massive back ache, neck ache, headache, horrible sinuses, and terrible arm pain because I forgot to take a pain killer before bed last night. I was going to skip dressing up today but people seemed disappointed.

About Sushi, Raspberries and Cameras.

Posted in Art, Food, Life, Photography, Technology, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on April 17, 2014 by urbannight

Yesterday I had the most amazing volcano roll for lunch. It seems like every place that serves sushi has a volcano roll but it is different at each establishment. It was also beautifully made. It really wasn’t as fancy as some. It was basically a California roll that was wrapped in thin layers of crab with a more spicy than usual spicy sauce and then sprinkled with some kink of crunchy flakes. It was also just a little bit salty.

I finished off the sushi with a cup of raspberries. They were on sale. Anytime I see them for 2.99 I buy some.  It is what I think of as the ‘normal’ price.  Sometimes the same sized containers can go all the way up to 5.99.  Far to high.

I would loved to take a photo of the delicious and beautiful food but I cannot.  My camera will not charge.  It works perfectly fine when plugged into the wall. This is why the people to whom I took the camera say that it must be a completely dead battery that will no longer take a charge.  Only new batteries, which were very hard to find, also didn’t charge.   I do not have a separate batter charger.  I’m wondering if I should try getting one and seeing if the batteries will charge when charged by an external charger.  Maybe something is wrong with the camera charger and not the batteries.

The only thing is that I’m not that happy with the camera.  It never was as good as my old camera.  But it was the closet one to what I had before.  That camera still worked but the view screen was damaged.  I had the camera in my pocket when I closed the door of the car.  Apparently it crushed something in the viewer.  I could take photos but I could not see what I was taking a photo of.  So I couldn’t see if I was pointing it correctly to get the image I wanted. The repair to that was going to cost as much as the camera was worth.  The part wasn’t terribly expensive but the labor to replace it cost twice as much as the part.

So my mom bought me a new one that was okay but not great.  And now I can’t find batteries for it and it won’t charge properly.  I didn’t think it was that only, only about 4 years.  But everyone else thought that was old for a camera.  Who goes and gets a new camera every year?  It isn’t like an iPod or a smart phone.

According to my roommate, new cameras are released about every 6 months.  His camera was only in production for 3 months and they stopped selling them about 8 months after the initial release date of that model.  So basely a 5-year-old camera would be like a 10-year-old car.

So now I’m thinking that I really want a new camera.  My oldest niece is getting married in June and I want good photos.  So maybe it is time to get a more expensive camera.

The irony is that my all time best camera was a 60$ film camera I picked up at a drug store before going on a vacation many years ago.  Eventually I had problems with the door to the film compartment.  It was my last film camera. I still miss it to this day.  My mom grumbled all through our Hawaii trip one year because my 60$ took better ocean photos than her 300$ camera.  It was funny.

So, until I get a new camera, I’m going to have photo problems with my blogs.  I might have trouble finding the photos I need from my collection of personal photos.

Blue Mystique

Posted in Art, Life with tags , , , , , , , , on July 28, 2013 by urbannight
Mystique by Mike Mayhew from Wikipedia

Mystique by Mike Mayhew from Wikipedia

There was a tempting 35$ plant at the store that wanted to come home with me. I resisted in the end. It was called a Blue Mystique Orchid. Or a Blue Mystery Orchid. I don’t know if it was Mystique because that was on the sign or if I thought Mystique because the darker blossoms were the color of Mystique’s skin.  Looks like it IS Mystique, in both senses.

Blue Mystique Orchids at a nursery.

Blue Mystique Orchids at a nursery.

Projects

Posted in Apartments, Art, Cats, Hobby, Life with tags , , , on April 19, 2013 by urbannight

I have several things going on that are slowing me down.  One that I will show you has not actually been started.  But I can’t wait to work on it. 

Mill Hill Frightful Delight Debbie Mumm

Mill Hill
Frightful Delight
Debbie Mumm

Since I’m not yet working on it, it isn’t slowing me down. But packing and weeding out stuff, in an attempt to reduce my stuff by 20%, and getting it all boxed up in 4 weeks will take some time.

We are moving to a newer unit across the road. Our building sits on a hill. The weather hits our corner pretty hard. The master bedroom has two outside walls that get bombarded with cold wind and rain and snow.

This means my roommate’s room can be a good 10 degrees colder that the rest of the apartment. Oddly enough, the room next to it, the computer room, can be an average of 10 degrees hotter than the living room, kitchen, and front bedroom. Hotter when both of us are in there and both computers are running. SO on a bad day, the two rooms, side by side, can be as much as 30 degrees apart.

The other place is going to be on the middle floor, with several buildings in front of us, to block the weather. Hopefully, the master bedroom won’t get hit so hard with cold air there.

Strange Poetry Requests

Posted in Advertising, Art, Books, Writing with tags , , , , , on March 12, 2013 by urbannight

It’s been years since I’ve submitted any poetry anywhere.  So imagine my surprise, a few weeks back, when I get an email about my poem being published in a Best Poetry of 2012 book.  How bizarre.  Not only that, no where does it mention what poem I supposedly submitted that they want to add to their volume.  I delete the email.

Today, I get another email saying my poem will NOT be published because they haven’t received it yet.  How odd?  So what I get out of this is that they didn’t really have any poem and they are just trying to get people to submit poems they will put in this so-called ‘best of’ book and then get the people to buy the book.

So none of these poems will have been vetted by the publisher?  Send what you want, we have a page reserved for  you?  How bad is that book going to be?  They have a strange definition of ‘Best’.

Best = How many people can we hoodwink into sending us poetry and buying the results?

Screaming without a Mouth, a Literary Classic

Posted in Art, Entertainment, Technology, Writing with tags , , , , , , , , , , on March 1, 2013 by urbannight

I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream is a great short work by one of the masters of Sci Fi Horror, Harlan Ellison.

It is the agony of ages.  Lifetimes lived in the wasteland after the computerized apocalypse.  Kept alive by a psychotic AM who has  learned how to modify human physiology and keep them, for all intent and purposes, immortal.

It is the horror of watching the people who AM kept as playthings, to continue his reign of terror and torture.

I have no mouthBenny, once a brilliant, good-looking, homosexual scientist, has been transformed into an ape-like creature, with giant sexual organs, who often has sex with the only female in the group.  He is completely insane and this presents in mostly childish behavior.

Nimdoc is an older man who seems to disappear at times to return to the group traumatized.  The implication is that AM takes him away to torture and terrorize.  He gets the group to go wandering in order to find food, which seems to be running out.

Gorrister was a pacifist who now seems to have no motivation for anything.  He tells the reader the back story of AM and how it came to power as a story to amuse the child-like Benny.

Ellen is the only woman.  She was supposedly chaste but AM altered her mind, much as he did Benny’s body, so that she now craves sex.  Her relationship with the group is complex as they fluctuate between protecting her from each other and abusing her.  Her prefered partner is Benny, ostensibly because of his large genitalia but possibly because his childish nature.  She is black.  She is the only character whose race is mentioned.

Ted is the narrator of this story.  He thinks he is the only person who remains unaltered by AM in any way.  He believes the others hate him because of it.  But it is possible that he has been tampered with and he simply doesn’t know it.  His own paranoia and delusions make it difficult to know if what he is telling the reader is the truth or a distorted version only he sees.

I Have No Mouth and I Must Scream was written by Harlan Ellison in one night back in 1966 and was puplished with minimal editing or rewriting from that first draft.  (The idea of AM predates Skynet by 18 years.)  It was based on a drawing a friend of his did.  I kind of want to see the drawing that inspired this story.

There is another world war, during which the three main powers create super computers to better run the war.  These computers are called Allied Mastercomputers.  AM.  After a while this changes to Adaptive Manipulator.  Then to Aggressive Menace.  One of the three computers becomes self-aware.  It absorbs the other two computers, becoming more powerful and thereby being connected to nearly every power in the world, running everything. 

The computer decided that the real enemy is humanity and it systematically kills everyone except the 5 people mentioned.  Its hatred seems to be personal rather than clinical.  AM is sentient, self-aware, but trapped in a machine, bound by logic.  AM is not a free being but feels imprisoned and blames it on the humans as the creators of the supercomputers. 

It delights in torturing the people.  It manages to keep them alive in a way that indicates he may have found the secret to immortality.  Or it just may be a function of the fact that it can manipulate their genetic structure.  So perhaps it can also stop the aging process.

AM takes its name not from the acronyms that it started with but from the saying, “I think therefore I am” and the biblical passage where God is call the great “I AM.”  While AM keeps the people alive, he keeps them on the edge of starvation, only feeding them meals that are so disgusting and unappealing that they can barely eat what little is offered, sometimes becoming ill after eating it. 

Nimdoc becomes absolutely convinced that there may be a stock pile of canned food someplace.  As it turns out, Nimdoc was correct.  They did, in fact, find a stockpile of canned food in some ice caves.  After a brief period of great excitement and elation as they raced to the pile, they realized that they still had a problem.   There was no way they could get into the cans.  No one had anything that can be used to open the cans because AM has removed anything they could possible use to commit suicide. 

In frustration, Benny attacks one of the others.  Ted eventually notices that AM is not doing anything to stop the attack. AM normally prevented anything that would cause permanent harm or death to any of them.  Ted grabs an icicle or something and kills Benny. One of the others catches on and they kill everyone and Ted kills the other. 

By now AM has seen what was happened and moved to stop it.  It is not able to bring it to a halt before most of them are dead.  It only manages to keep Ted from killing himself.  Now it has only one representative of humanity, its most hated enemy, left.  In order to stop Ted from every managing anything like this again, it turns Ted into a blob. 

Ted is now truly insane but cannot scream from the torture and torment because he has no mouth.  The only thread he has left to hold on to is the satisfaction that he was able to beat AM long enough to save the others from an eternity of torture by helping them die.

Obsession

Posted in Apartments, Art, Books, Entertainment, Food, Hobby, Life, Movies and Theatre, Photography, Science, Tea, Technology, Television, Travel with tags , , , , , , , , , , on February 7, 2013 by urbannight

I signed up for a Pinterest page.  I now understand how people say it can get obsessive and one can get lost in it.  Hopefully I will emerge from it soon. 

Things I’ve found on it:

Books, Movies, Food, Art, Decor, Homes, Style, Space, Science Fiction, Star Wars, Comics, Daleks, Tardis, Doctor Who, Nature, Scenery, and pretty much everything under the sun.