New Theme!


I wanted something that would be better for showing pictures as well as text – seeing as that’s what I post mostly, these days.  Opinions welcomed.

Just noticed that the new facebook commenting functionality has killed all the old comments. How bad is this? I am not sure.

Google Streetview mapping the North Pole now.. Illustration Friday – Snow!

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Those crazy guys at Google get everywhere to enable your vicarious adventuring/real estate hunt..

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New toys

This is mostly about my lovely new Waterman ringtop lever fill pen, but I couldn’t let a new toy post pass without a showing of this:

a belt that is a tool that is a belt!
ohhh yeah.


Right? Nice chunky full grain leather belt with detachable buckle that’s an 8mm, 10mm, 11mm hex wrench, phillips screwdriver, flathead screwdriver and bottle opener. See it here.

Anyway, on to the pen.  I bought ‘im on the intertubes  (it is a 52 1/2 V to be precise. Which I think means it’s from about the 20s and is made of hard rubber), expecting to have to replace the sac and fiddle with it quite a bit – but no. It was pretty much good to go. I cleaned it out a little and just started straight in. It’s really very lovely – I am no fountain pen aficionado, but I have heard of the fabled artist nib that Waterman made in the ’30s, and long to try one – but this one is really very nice to use, and seems to have a good thin – thick range.

testing the new nib..

testing the new nib

With a standard Parker 51 for comparison – the ring top pens are quite a bit smaller than a standard sized version.

ringtop waterman and parker 51 for size comparison

The nib’s not quite an Artist nib but pretty pointy and flexy I think..

I’ve just started on a distance learning children’s book illustration course, for which one of the first exercises is a study in textures. I tried out the pen. In sketching mode I don’t seem to use the thickness variation a lot.

it’s a cardboard cutout wall, ok?

Ringtop pens are supposedly less sought after because they are smaller. I don’t understand this. Smaller things are awesome!

People are wrong.

Git and Textmate on OSX Lion

Have you seen this git bundle?

Just because it might save someone a bit of pain; if you are getting extremely tedious messages like the below when trying to use git in textmate after your upgrade (forced by an ill-timed and catastrophic hardware failure* or not), here are steps to fix. My googling found an awful lot of not very helpful stuff..

Evil error messages of doom:

sh: line 1: git: command not found

Administration >> Update Git bundle:

Updating git bundle

/Users//Library/Application Support/TextMate/Bundles/Git.tmbundle/Support/tmvc/../lib/git.rb:131:in `paths’: No selected files. (RuntimeError) from /Users//Library/Application Support/TextMate/Bundles/Git.tmbundle/Support/tmvc/../lib/git.rb:80:in `path’ from /Users//Library/Application Support/TextMate/Bundles/Git.tmbundle/Support/tmvc/../lib/git.rb:89:in `path_for’ from /Users//Library/Application Support/TextMate/Bundles/Git.tmbundle/Support/tmvc/../lib/git.rb:415:in `with_path’ from /tmp/temp_textmate.cRVD5L:22



add the path to your git bin (get it by typing which git in a terminal window. remove the trailing git) in Preferences >> Advanced >> Shell Variables >> PATH like so:


add a new variable TM_GIT with a value of git



*Woe. Now. More installing. More. SO. MUCH. MORE.

get out of my brain it is mine

or, design gestalt..

I started making a new design for webanorak a while back.  It had some fun transparent overlay tricks for making javascripty bobbling clouds of content look lovely. It had png24 pattern overlays for that not so THIS IS THE FUTURE, MAN! WEB 2.0 sameness all over the everywhere.

I then left it in it’s little box for a while after the initial enthusiasm was side-tracked by puppies or kittens or head trauma or something. Looking at it again, and comparing it to all the lovely I AM THE FUTURE bleeding edge of cool sites out there now my design blends in to the crowd.

very dull.

Feck it. CSS sprite menus are retro cool.

Adobe ebook DRM crazymadness solution

adobe digital editions is a piece of shit
I could not agree more.
  1. I have to install a special program to view it?
  2. It is not compatible with Stanza* (see comments from Neelan Choksi), the best ebook reader ever – although less happy for their prospects since they sold out to Amazon.. Oh Kindle for iPhone. How sad you make me. Not quite as sad as iBooks. But pretty sad.
  3. It takes THREE BILLION YEARS to download a POCKET edition of a book?
  4. I have to install some random extra product to my iphone (after a non trivial search to find the goddamned thing in the first place) to view it?

What. The. Shit.


*Note the dearth of development since the buyout. And it is still better than the Kindle app by roughly one million miles of subjective value distance.