Easter Never FELT This Good

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Are you up late tonight helping the Easter Bunny to hide his eggs? I remember those years fondly when our (now, 26-year-old) son was at that age when he’d be like a Mexican Jumping Bean, filled with excitement, over the prospect of searching for those wonder of wonders, chocolate and jelly bean EGGS laid ostensibly by a most unusual species of Hare. One of Rob’s favorite things to do from the time he was 3 was to draw all kinds of maps – maps for “Hunting the Elusive Bear”, maps for his Grandma in Cleveland, Ohio to get to our home (at that time) in Winchester, Virginia; and of course, the most important kind of map of all – just ask any pirate – the Treasure Map! But he couldn’t draw a Treasure Map to where that Lop-Ear Minstrel of Merriment had hid her eggs until AFTER he had found them all. I was a real corker of a Momma back then, teasing the boy by coming up with ever more ways to drag out the game so he’d really have to think and search so when he finally found the handful of sweets he’d feel like he had accomplished something worthwhile. So I’d stay up half the night before trying to come up with some kind of clever riddles that when answered correctly, would lead Rob to each of the eggs. The first year we did this, was a breeze but as the years went on it got harder and harder for ME to come up with some place new and, harder yet, come up with a clue that was not too easy, not too hard, and hopefully worth a laugh. I finally got smart the last couple years we did this, though. I’d go hide the treats and then delegate the task of writing the riddles to me Hubby! Hmm, Why didn’t I think of that sooner?

As I mentioned, Robby has outgrown this game (to some extent…) but we’ve got a new twist on it this year. Later this morning we’re going to visit my Hubby’s 92-year old Mother at the Nursing Home she moved to a few months ago. And instead of hunting for Easter Eggs, Don, Rob and I are all going to hunt for Grandma’s dentures, eyeglasses and hearing aids!! Whee! — Well, time does seem to have a way of marching on and no one ever said that getting old is a dignified process. Thank God, we’ve all still got our sense of humor and that Grandma’s being taken such good care of by the Dominican Nuns and lay-people who run the facility she lives at now.

To all of my friends and readers who celebrate Easter and those who celebrate the renewal of life at this season, may you always be joyful and blessed and showered in sunshine and love.

——- Leslie

Free Icons of the Day

The following images are either full or reduced size previews. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the preview to save the image(s) of your choice to your desktop. (Unless otherwise noted, downloads are 512px X 512px in .png format). As always, usage of any of the images offered on this blog are free for your personal use while subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives – Share Alike- 3.0 license. (See sidebar for details)

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Phil A. O’Fish – Is Grateful That Lent Is Over!

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FELT BETTER? (Felt System Icons)

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I’ve actually been having a little fun with this latest icon set. With the framed kelly green felt wallpaper on my desktop, I created a bunch of empty folders and set their icons to a bunch of the felt images from this new series and just played with them creating pictures and stories around them. Just like being in Kindergarten again! I’m thinking of maybe doing a kids book with these. Better yet, maybe some of you guys out there that have young children can let them loose with these and then send in your screenshots and stories that the kids make up and I’ll put them together in a download-able/printable book format for everyone to share and enjoy! Whaddya think?

Tonight I’m posting some basic system icons for those of you that want to have a more practical use for this series. Coming up over the next several days will be everything you need for your system, applications and user folders. I’ll close off the series in a week or so with characters and toys and animals so the young ‘uns (and those young at heart or just plain immature like me) can create their own villages and tales.

Enjoy!

Free Icons of the Day

The following images are either full or reduced size previews. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the preview to save the image(s) of your choice to your desktop. (Unless otherwise noted, downloads are 512px X 512px in .png format). As always, usage of any of the images offered on this blog are free for your personal use while subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives – Share Alike- 3.0 license. (See sidebar for details)

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Cleveland Indians & Art Deco Icons

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This time of year always puts me in a nostalgic mood. Remembering walking to school in the mornings while it still was dark and being spooked by the sounds of the neighborhood waking up; freezing my buns off at the after-school football games because mini-skirts were far more important back then than keeping warm; and going through the roller-coaster emotions wondering whether my city’s home team, the Cleveland Indians, were finally going to make it into the World Series. The latter memory has been a perennial obsession for most of us in northeast Ohio. We want to believe so much in our team but just about every year, the team’s owner’s do their best imitation of Lucy to the fans’ Charlie Brown by stealing our chances away. I’m not a gambler but for those of you who are, here’s a tip. Watch the Cleveland Indians for the first half of the season and whoever is the best player, our best chance of making it to the Big Game, not only can you count on that player being traded away before the season’s over, whichever team they are traded to is a near-perfect predictor of at least one of the teams that will play in the World Series either that year and/or the next. This is not my imagination nor, of course, am I the first to notice this phenomenon. This year, it’s C.C. Sabathia who’s now a Yankee and our old coach, Charlie Manual, who’s brought the Philadelphia Phillies to the Series. I am by no means an expert sport’s analyst, but with a long pattern like this, it’s hard not to wonder whether the Indian’s are in fact not a major league team but rather the world’s best AAA-baseball team rewarded by being allowed to play with the majors but never taken seriously by their owners. As Charlie Brown would say, “AAUGH!”

Well, enough moaning and moping. Tonight I’ve decided to catch up with the rest of my Fox Spokane icon series (copper-toned art deco). If you haven’t already got the previous entries, check them out here and here. Enjoy!

Free Clip-Art / Icons of the Day

The following images are either full or reduced size previews. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the preview to save the image(s) of your choice to your desktop. (Unless otherwise noted, images are 512px X 512px in .png format). As always, usage of any of the images offered in the “Free Clip-Art / Icons of the Day” section are free for your personal use, subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives – Share Alike- 3.0 license. (See sidebar for Terms of Use) For commercial or any other use, please contact me for directly.

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Fox Spokane - Servers - CLICK TO DOWNLOAD

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Autumn Splendor & Russet Icons

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It was a lovely day I’m told, up here on the north coast of the USA at the edge of Lake Erie. One of those clear, crisp, bright and colorful autumn days, perfect for a walk around one of Ohio’s incredible state parks. While it’s been years since I’ve been able to do that myself, I’ve been blessed with such vivid memories that I just close my eyes and can hear the crackle of the dried, fallen leaves beneath my feet; the smokey, vaguely meaty smell of a wood-fire rising through a chimney at a nearby lodge; the distant creaking and gentle laughter of children playing on the swings; the peaceful honking of geese flying in a perfect “V” formation on their way down from Canada and passing through to reach Georgia for the winter; and the taste of crisp, tart winesap apples in my mouth. Just thinking of these sensations brings a smile to my face. You just can’t beat those simple pleasures. So while I slept through most of the daytime hours (a consequence of the flu shot I had last week because of my almost non-existent immune system), my imagination served me well with the next best thing.

As a follow-up to last night’s premier of my Russet series of icons, tonight I’m serving up the balance of that series, which includes a coordinating wallpaper (packaged in 3 different sizes). Enjoy!

The following images are reduced size previews of all clip-art included in the following 4 linked-to zipped archives. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the preview of your choice to save all of the full-size images to your desktop. (Unless otherwise noted, downloads are 512px X 512px in .png format). As always, usage of any of the images offered in the “Free Clip-Art / Icons of the Day” section are free for your personal use, subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives – Share Alike- 3.0 license. (See sidebar for Terms of Use) For commercial or any other use, please contact me for directly.

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Declaration of Principles & Russet Icons

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The main difference between having my blog vs. uploading my icons and clip art to websites which host digital galleries and downloads is the opportunity to share a bit of the inspiration behind my art. I do this, first, to make it a little more interesting and to widen the scope of the potential viewers, and secondly, to hopefully get some dialog going or at least people thinking about subjects or points of view they may not have considered before or done anything about.

If I have any specific agenda at all to proselytize, it is to keep an open-mind; that honesty and integrity are the most valuable assets anyone can strive for (and the ONLY assets that anyone can actually “own”) and that each and every human being has the ability and responsibility to make a positive difference with their lives that goes beyond their purely personal interests.

That message is simultaneously ridiculously simple and impossible to quantify, impossible to define for somebody else. Yet, I truly believe that if we each live our lives with these goals at the forefront, we’ll recognize the opportunities to prove (not just say) what we stand for and substantiate the value of our lives. Whether you’ll be the one to invent a life-saving device on the level of a lightning-rod or be the one person who took the time to be kind to the kid everyone makes fun of, it all adds to a better world that would not have had a chance if you hadn’t looked outside of yourself, seen a need, asked yourself, first, “What if that were me?” and then “How can I help?”.

Ironically, this lovely, grand-sounding “Declaration of Principles” started out as an admission that the set of icons that I’m introducing tonight actually have no deep inspirational or even slightly interesting story behind them – merely a color and texture theme that I started to play with. I tried to retroactively come up with a pseudo-inspiration by doing a web-search on the name of both the color and series, “Russet”, which lead me to a number of both surprising and interesting topics (ranging from a hot copyright controversy about “Russet Noon”; a new iPhone App to read F. Scott Fitzgerald’s short-story “The Russet Witch” (which strikes me as a fodder for a Coen Brothers movie); a bizarre interview with Paula Abdul conducted by a Russet Potato and the methods for making russet fabric for uniforms during the Civil War). But as I’ve already confessed, there were no lofty thoughts behind this series, just a color that I find peaceful and reassuring.

Free Icons of the Day

The following images are either full or reduced size previews. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the preview to save the image(s) of your choice to your desktop. (Unless otherwise noted, downloads are 512px X 512px in .png format). As always, usage of any of the images offered on this blog are free for your personal use while subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives – Share Alike- 3.0 license. (See sidebar for details)

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Art Deco: Icons – or – Clip Art?

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An interesting comment was posted on the forums at MacTHEMES in response to a few previews I had posted of my Art Deco Series when I began noodling with it in 2007. While indicating that he liked my concept, the Poster felt that the execution was more conducive to Clip Art than Icons. I appreciated his comments and must say that when viewing my art at say 48×48 or smaller sizes, that I can certainly see his point. Guess I’m rather spoiled in working on a Mac PowerBook 17 with a resolution of 1920×1200, thus having the real estate to keep my icons at their full OSX 10.4+ size of 128×128 pixels so I can enjoy them and without them being intrusive. I suppose that’s the benefit of being “retired” and no longer having to create work that is acceptable to the general mass market to feed my family. 😉 At the same time, just because I’ve referred to my creations as “icons” doesn’t prevent you creative folks out there from using them as you might if they were advertised as “Clip Art”.

What’s your view? I’m curious to know:

  1. How many of you look upon icons purely as a functional interface element vs. as functional AND “eye-candy”?
  2. What size do you keep icons at on your desktop?
  3. Do you ever set a custom icon on a folder to serve no purpose other than to just enjoy looking at it?
  4. Do your preferences change if working on a Mac vs. Windows?

Free Clip-Art / Icons of the Day

The following images are either full or reduced size previews. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the preview to save the image(s) of your choice to your desktop. (Unless otherwise noted, downloads are 512px X 512px in .png format). As always, usage of any of the images offered in the “Free Clip-Art / Icons of the Day” section are free for your personal use, subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives – Share Alike- 3.0 license. (See sidebar for Terms of Use) For commercial or any other use, please contact me for directly.

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My Adaptation of cover on F. Scott Fitzgerald’s “ALL THE SAD YOUNG MEN” (original on right):

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Versatility of Man-Made Materials in Art Deco

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A big part of what drove Art Deco was the plethora of new Industrial materials such as aluminum, bakelite and plastics, which found themselves in favor for such non-industrial applications as dishes, hair brushes, clocks, and even ladies’ evening purses. These new materials were extremely durable, easy to work with and form into exotic shapes and lead to new discoveries for working with pigments as the plastics in particular could take on strong, vibrant colors that did not easily fade.

Free Icons of the Day

The following images are either full or reduced size previews. Simply right-click (or control-click) on the preview to save the image(s) of your choice to your desktop. (Unless otherwise noted, downloads are 512px X 512px in .png format). As always, usage of any of the images offered in the “Free Clip-Art / Icons of the Day” section are free for your personal use, subject to the limitations of my Creative Commons Non-Commercial – Attribution – No Derivatives – Share Alike- 3.0 license. (See sidebar for Terms of Use) For commercial or any other use, please contact me for directly.

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