So there I was, minding my own business (as usual) when I came across an eHow instructional article. The article itself was rather strange and specific: How to Draw Zodiac Constellations.
| |And there I am, cited as an expert in the definition of a Zodiac Constellation. This was, mind you, before I was a published author on the subject of astronomy, which would make me a little bit more of an expert, one would think. It's nice to know I was considered an expert before I published the book, but it might matter who is considering me the expert.Not just anyone can write for eHow; there appears to be an application process, and the writers are all paid for their content.
This writer passed somebody's screening process. Demand Studios (content distributor for eHow and other channels) also hires copy editors, who presumably passed somebody's screening process and then checked the work of the writer. And yet...
The instructions were a bit odd. Basically: look at someone else's representation of the constellation. Draw the big stars first, then the smaller stars. Connect the dots. I have a hard time reconciling how these instructions are useful, or how they are appreciably different than instructions for drawing any constellation.
Another thing Demand Studios pays people for: determining the appropriate category for a particular title. I'm not sure if they desperately need more people for this job, or if their current employees are just terrible at their jobs.
The drill-down for this article is Home >> Toys & Games >> Magic, Mystery & Fortune Telling >> Aries >> How to Draw Zodiac Constellations. There has to be a better classification for this! If I were starting from the Home location, there's no way I would follow this path to figure out how to draw Zodiac Constellations. Here are a few that I would try first:
Home >> Arts & Entertainment >> Art Drawing >> Drawing
Home >> Arts & Entertainment >> Art Drawing >> Pencil Drawing
Home >> Arts & Entertainment >> Art Drawing >> Step by Step Drawing
Home >> Arts & Entertainment >> Art Drawing >> Draw to Scale
Home >> Arts & Entertainment >> Art Drawing >> Draw Anything
Home >> Arts & Entertainment >> Art Drawing >> Draw Illustrations
Home >> Arts & Entertainment >> Art Drawing >> Drawing Directions
Home >> Arts & Entertainment >> Draw Shapes & Objects >> Draw Stars
Home >> Arts & Entertainment >> Draw Shapes & Objects >> Draw Stuff
Home >> Hobbies & Science >> Earth & Space Science >> Constellations
Home >> Hobbies & Science >> Earth & Space Science >> Find Stars
Home >> Hobbies & Science >> Earth & Space Science >> Night Sky
Home >> Hobbies & Science >> Earth & Space Science >> About Astronomy
That means the Toys & Games route would be at minimum my 14th try, but I'm guessing I'd never actually get there. I hope they have a better search function than categorization function. While looking through those categories, I found all manner of mis-categorized articles. All of those drawing subcategories should probably have been in "Arts & Crafts" rather than in "Arts & Entertainment," but that aside, when you finally get down to the articles in that first listing, >> Art Drawing >> Drawing, you'll find (almost at the top of the page):
Identify Income Sources You Can Draw From in Retirement
Can I Draw Both SSD & SSI?
What Is a Sales Draw?
How to Increase Your Band's Draw
How to Fix the Draw in a Fireplace
None of which are even obliquely related to Art Drawing. So, I'm thinking I might apply to work for Demand Studios, since I'm already cited as an expert, and clearly I have some skills they need.
How do you get your blog fix?My reader-of-choice is bloglovin'
. The interface is clean and easy to use. You can follow anything with a feed, and it arranges all unread posts at the top, with a large picture (if there is one in the post) and the first paragraph or so of text. You can easily mark a post as "read" to skip it, or "like" a post to come back to later. You can sort blogs into your own categories and read whole categories at a time (or skip whole categories by marking them all as read).Bloglovin' is one of the permanent tabs open in my browser and I have yet to see any other blog reader that comes close for my taste.
But that's the thing. My taste is mine, and your preferences for reading blogs may be very different.
Some blog platforms, like WordPress
, and Tumblr
make it easy to follow other blogs on that same platform, with convenient follower tracking methods. This is great if your blog is on one of those platforms. Mine is not. You can still follow me the hard way, though (click below on the appropriate icon to see how). I'll figure out how to calculate my followers later...
I hope you'll find a way to follow not just my blog, but all the blogs that catch your interest. Please don't limit what you read on a regular basis just because it's not easy to follow with your current system. Find a blog reader that works for all the blogs you want to read and use it!All of this buttony business was inspired by a post on Will Work 4 Followers.
If you want to add a simpler version of these follow buttons, head over to that site and follow the instructions.By the way, the title of this post is in reference to the fact that this is my 200th post!
When I arrived at my 100th post a while back, I realized that I had counted incorrectly, and it was actually my 101st post. I almost
did it again this time.
My blog posting, up until now, has been patchy at best. I frequently don't have time, and then when I do, I don't know what to post about. I still don't know if anyone cares enough to read this thing, but I got on a roll this February and posted 41 times!
If I were just one hour faster, this one could have counted as number 42, which is, of course, the answer to Life, the Universe, and Everything
. Alas, this current post landed squarely in March. Gimme a break, February's a short month!Some new topics have emerged this month:New Releases: As I add new products to my shop, they might debut here.Photo Challenges: Who knew entering these would be so addicting?Venust Truth: My ruminations on the beauty of the world.Chaff Sagacity
: Old photos I've dug up, not good enough to sell
, but good enough to inspire.Lazy 365: My personal photography quest, to get the serendipitous shot.Some old topics were also heartily revisited:Diversion Audit: What I do with myself all winter as an Artist in Residence.Tutorials: A little bit of how-to on random subjects.Waxing Geeketic: Science information, specifically
stargazing tutorials.Don't get too attached, I'm going back to my life in the forest soon. But for now, you can expect a few more weeks of prolific posting. February's selections can be found below, or all posts here.
It was so hard to choose, but my favorite posts from Fecund February have become the "you might also like" links for this post:
Here I was, posting along, knowing that I was approaching a milestone... and I miscounted. This was supposed to be the 100th post on this blog.
100th posts are a time for reflection and nostalgia, for look how far I've come, and look how long I've been doing this, and such. But then I just blew right past post #100, to arrive here at post number #101. So, no reflection. Instead I give you a parable (entirely true!) in which you may find some enlightenment.
Kirpe and the Hundred Beans
In fourth grade, we were tasked with bringing 100 of something to class. It could be anything: thumbtacks, beads, grains of rice, pennies, scraps of paper. We simply had to bring in exactly 100, and the items should be small enough to fit in a sandwich bag.
I don't remember what we eventually did with our 100 somethings, but it was probably related to 4th grade level math in some way.
My classmate, Kirpe, was "that kid" in many ways. Some of the funniest moments of 4th grade involved Kirpe. For the assignment, Kirpe brought 100 black beans to class. Just before we were going to use our 100 somethings, our teacher told us to count and make sure we had exactly 100. Kirpe counted his beans, and discovered that he had 101. One too many!
Kirpe did not want to be caught with the wrong number of somethings! He couldn't believe he had miscounted at home and was now suffering the consequences. Kirpe quickly swallowed one of his beans - he didn't do something rational like simply putting one of the beans in his pocket - he swallowed it.
Then, just to be sure, Kirpe counted his beans again. He now had... 99. He counted again. Still 99. It seems that the only time Kirpe had erroneously counted his beans had been the time he had discovered he had 101 of them.
The moral of this story is: double check, before you do something drastic. Romeo would agree. Not that missing the 100th blog post is anything to worry about, but it's good advice nonetheless.
I took this photo standing on the back of a cable car in San Francisco. I love how it turned out, especially the golden glow of the buildings. Having grown up in the Bay Area, doing touristy things is a rare treat that only comes with out-of-town guests.
We must have looked touristy indeed, with our cameras hanging around our necks. At least we didn't have the stricken "I thought this was supposed to be sunny
California" looks on our faces as we shivered in shorts and newly purchased sweatshirts, which is the easy way to tell the real tourists.
A great quotation (erroneously attributed
to Mark Twain) states, "The coldest winter I ever spent was a summer in San Francisco." Though the quotation is false, the sentiment is real. San Francisco is frequently foggy, cold, damp, and windy - even in summer. On the brighter side, in the dead of winter (when this photograph was taken), San Francisco is at its worst only foggy, cold, damp, and windy. If you are prepared for the worst summer weather San Francisco can dish out, you are also prepared for its worst winter weather.
Find this photo on Etsy
, Handmade Spark
, or right here
Eight months in the making, I finally sent out another e-mail newsletter. Turns out I started working on another one a few months back and forgot about it. I'll send that one later...
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