When There is No Cure

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Science and medicine have come so far over the last 50 years that it’s easy to presume there is a “cure” for everything, or at least a treatment that’ll ease any pain or other disabling symptoms and extend your life. But that is hardly the reality for millions of folks suffering from either rare or just simply mysterious illnesses that medical researchers have yet to crack. I don’t know what is worse: to find yourself saddled with conditions in the class of those “un-cracked” diseases or to be suffering from diseases and conditions for which treatments (or even cures) ARE available but you can’t take them because you either can’t afford it or because you have other diseases or conditions at the same time that make you ineligible for such treatment. I happen to be in that last category and can honestly say it really sucks! But I also think that there is no good reason for anyone to actually try to weigh “what sucks more” as that would end up invalidating the frustrations and grief experienced by those in whichever group is found to “suck less”. Nothing positive can come out of being subjected to others who try to deny the reality of your situation and who attempt to invalidate your feelings. All it accomplishes is adding to the frustration, stress, and feelings of isolation you already feel.

While those who suffer from any medical condition in any of the above categories can (and should) attempt to educate their family, friends, bosses and coworkers about the reality of their situation (particularly if does or can have a direct impact on those others), too often those “others” don’t WANT to be educated. Usually, such reactions are out of fear for their own health, comfort, or other personal interest. But IMHO, from my personal observations, any benefit gained from sticking one’s head in the sand is doomed to be short-lived and eventually regretted. (Ed. That’s not intended as a threat to anyone, as it is simply the statistical truth based on experience and the laws of probability). Quite candidly, I’ve finally learned to recognize that the consequences suffered by such Ostriches, due to their deliberately maintaining a status of “plausible deniability”, is THEIR problem, not mine. I am no longer willing to waste my time trying to open the eyes of those human ostriches as experience has taught they will only ever see what they want to see. My mission is not to console the regretful naysayers, but to help myself and others who face no viable treatment or cure available to them. My 2012 plan towards achieving that goal via my blog is to research, explore, blog and share different ways to Live (with a capital “L”) even while we’re struggling just to survive.

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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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PJ_Music—-PJ_Textures

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WHAT’S NEW ON ZAZZLE? VALENTINES!

6 More Updates (just 17 left to go!)

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HEADS-UP! I’ve completed updating the links to my freebie icons and clip-art on six (6) more of my older posts. As previously mentioned (here) and (here), these updates may have some icons or clip-art that was not in the original post, so you might want to check them out. See below for a list of the latest updated posts with links to them.

MORE UPDATED POSTS

  1. New Look Is Here! + Elegance Pt. 2
  2. Elegance (Wow! deez icons got class!)
  3. Halloween Folk-Art Avatars
  4. Avatars March for Sylvan Rights
  5. Who’s yer Avatar see in the mirror?
  6. Something to Crow About

And for this very early morning day’s serving of freebie original images, I offer you Part 1 of my quirky, quickie new series entitled “Pink Jelly”. 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, 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.

Pink Jelly - Generic Folder

Pink Jelly - Bookmarks Folder….PJ_Favorites

Pink Jelly - Textures Folder

Clippings….Threads

WHAT’S NEW ON ZAZZLE

Wm. Morris Window (Premium Magnet)
Wm. Morris’ Window (Premium Magnet)
Class up the joint with this 4×6″ Flexible Refrigerator Magnet featuring YOUR uploaded photograph (or the grandkids, the hottie from next door, or…?) with IconDoIt’s wonderful new frame design (A delightful tromp l’oeil of a richly carved cherry wood window frame, gracefully draped swag curtain panel, all against one of William Morris’ intricate Arts & Crafts movement wallpapers.
Edwardian Photo Frame Plaque
Edwardian Photo Frame (Plaque)
Upload your own photo and personalize the inscription for a simply elegant, thoughtful, affordable gift that’ll be cherished for years to come. Your photo will be surrounded by IconDoIt’s original artwork inspired by an ornate, Edwardian-era (Art Nouveau) brass picture frame inherited from her Grandmother, Sara.
The Puzzling Tale - Tuxedo  Puzzle w/Tin
The Puzzling Tale – Tuxedo Puzzle w/Tin
What Fun! A 110-piece jigsaw puzzle featuring YOUR uploaded photograph (to replace IconDoIt’s with her favorite lamb), surrounded by IconDoIt’s original ‘Tuxedo Frame’ and personalized with the captions of your choice. All in a great storage tin with the completed image on top.

Rejection As A Prognosticator for Success

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Some Interesting Facts:

  1. “The Salon des Paris”, sponsored by the French government since 1673, was considered the most esteemed artistic competition in Paris and one of the greatest spectacles in Europe. Works rejected by the selection committee got marked with a big red “R” on the back of the canvas.
  2. In 1863, the Paris Salon, called “The Exhibition of Living Artists” averaged 23,000 visitors a day (400,000 total at 10 francs a pop).
  3. That same year (and again in 1864), due to pressure from the artists and the public, the Emperor Napoleon III permitted a second exhibition, the “Salon des Refusés”, to take place simultaneously right next to the Salon, to showcase the artists whose work had been rejected by the Paris Salon. A total of only 3,500 people attended the Salon des Refusés, despite the bargain ticket price of 1 franc.
  4. Amongst the artists displaying at the Salon des Refusés in 1863 and 1864, were Édouard Manet, Edgar Dégas, Claude Monet, Camille Pissarro, Paul Cézanne, and the American painter, James McNeill Whistler.
  5. In 1878, Alphonse Mucha’s application to the Prague Academy of Fine Arts was rejected, with the following recommendation: “Find yourself another profession where you’ll be more useful”.
  6. Vincent Van Gogh sold only one painting, “Red Vineyard at Arles”, during his lifetime. He was little known to the art world at the time of his death, but his paintings became famous after he died.
  7. In 1907, Picasso’s “Les Demoiselles d’Avignon” was so way ahead of its time that it was rejected by the art world and the general public. This painting of five figures in a brothel is nowadays regarded as the most outstanding work of Picasso’s earlier years.
  8. In 1961, second-grade school teacher at Belvoir Elementary, Claire Heiss, flunked Leslie Sigal in art (because she could not stay within the lines with her crayon)

The lesson to be learned? Listen to your own heart about who you want to be and what you want to do in life and then, do it. Period.

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 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)

SALON_Drawer

SALON_InBox 2SALON_OutBox

SALON_Documents Fldr

SALON_DocumentSALON_Folder Generic

SALON_Document Box

SALON_NotesSALON_Diary

SIGAL_signature

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I Am The Woman I Designed

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Back in 1974 when I was 20 years old, feeling confident and comfortable in my own skin, I found myself at odds with most of my female friends and most especially with my older sister and mother, who were all becoming strident feminists. As an overtly independent person from the day I was born (or free spirit as I’ve often been characterized), the women around me saw my anti-feminist attitude as antithetical to the way I lived my life up to then. Rather than having a rational conversation about the basis for our difference in opinion about the NOW (National Organization of Women) movement, these women jumped to the conclusion that I had sold out or been brainwashed by the guy I was so gaga about at that time. Nothing could have been farther from the truth but the attitude that I was a traitor to my own sex was so incredibly absurd to me (particularly in light of my chosen career) I never took their anger seriously. My friends and my mother eventually “got it” when they finally realized that while they were busy going to conventions, participating in protest marches, and getting riled up about the inequities of life and neanderthal men, I was busy pursuing and succeeding in careers that had traditionally been for men only. But to this day, I know that one of those women still holds a grudge against me for the perceived disloyalty. I just don’t get it.

More than anything else, I value freedom. I firmly believe that that ALL people have the God-given right to be free, in their thoughts and in their choices, limited only by one rule: that the exercise of their freedom does not infringe on the freedom of anyone else.

Now, because of our right to think as we choose, it is inevitable that we won’t agree with everyone else and as far as I’m concerned, that’s not only okay, it’s how we learn and grow and it’s what makes life interesting. The problem I saw (and still see) with NOW (and with any other radical organizations) is that their agenda is not to ensure the freedom of women to think for themselves and choose how they want to live their lives, but they want to force (by legislation or intimidation) everyone to think as the leaders of the organization(s) think. Besides the fact that you cannot legislate thought or morality, the very concept of there being only one “right way” to think or live, is abhorrent to me.

When I decided to be an Audio Engineer and Producer back in 1972, I knew of only one other woman in all of Northeast Ohio who was active in that field. Yet, I never felt artificially barred, limited or discriminated against in any way due to being a woman, and in fact was well on the road in a promising career in radio and advertising until I got stopped in my tracks as a result of a stroke that left me almost completely deaf at age 27. Twenty years later, when I decided to accept a job as a construction field superintendent, only a handful of women held that position in the Greater Cleveland area, and while it took 2 or 3 days at the beginning for the guys to feel comfortable having a female “boss”, soon we were able to develop respect for each others’ skills and knowledge and became a very effective team. The key to the success I found in traditionally male-dominated careers was that I never asked for, nor allowed, anyone to give me any special consideration simply because of my gender and because I harbored no anger or resentment towards my fellow workers simply because of their gender, we were able to have a relaxed atmosphere to work in, joking with each other without fear of it being taken the wrong way, allowing each of us to simply be ourselves and rise or fall based upon our own individual talents and efforts.

While there are certainly greater opportunities for women and for minorities than existed 40 years ago, this advancement has been hard earned by millions of citizens, one individual at a time, in spite of organization’s like NOW and not because of them. The only visible legacy of these kamikaze “What About Me?” armies is an overly sensitive nation obsessed with appearing to be politically correct while seething with an under-current of anger, fear and distrust permeating the public lives of its’ citizens; a President and congressional majority which advocate that the US should turn a blind eye to terrorism and fascism (as long as it is “over there”) and which is feverishly ramping up to control nearly every aspect of our lives; and a country that looks down on gay couples wanting to marry and wanting to adopt children while the majority of heterosexual adults are either divorced or never married yet continue to have children that they have no time or interest in raising. In my humble opinion, the NOW revolution was ill-conceived from day one but false pride has blinded those who rallied behind it, looking to lay blame and to get something for nothing rather than standing on their own two feet, marching to their own drum, and win or lose, facing their own music.

What a waste.

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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)

I am the Woman

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Chinese Ornamental Hardware

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Following through on my foray into oriental-inspired clip-art, I dug into my archives and came up with a few experiments I created several years ago based upon a couple of door knobs I found at an antique store. In those days, I made everything 128×128 pixels as that was the largest size usable for an icon on Mac’s OSX. Nowadays, 512×512 is the standard and so I’ve updated the old art to accommodate the new size and cleaned up the details. I’ve no idea whether these designs actually have some meaning in one or another Chinese dialects. I’d love to know but just do not have the ability to concentrate long enough to compare the characters to the hundreds of examples out there. If anyone out there can enlighten me on this, that’d be great.

In the meantime, 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, 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 3.0 license. (See sidebar for details)

Bang A Gong (Midnight)

Bang A Gong (Rust)

Bang A Gong (Coffee)Bang A Gong (Silver)

Bang A Gong 2

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Glass Is In Our Blood

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There is something about glass that has always intrigued me. Just the idea that you could mix together various elements that were seemingly opaque themselves to create a new material altogether that was suddenly translucent seems magical. Learning the science of it hasn’t put a damper to my awe (same way I still feel about the transmission of radio and television waves, but that’s something for another post.) Years ago before my son was born, me hubby and I took a class together to learn how to make leaded glass windows. It was Don’s idea and I just went along for the ride (or so was my original intention). That experience was actually the first time that I found a way that I could express myself visually and it opened up a whole new world for me.

After Rob was born, I put away all of my raw glass and tools because I was concerned about him wandering into it and getting hurt. I figured I’d get back to creating new windows after he got older, but as usually happens in life, our circumstances changed. By the time Rob was old enough for me to feel it’d be safe, I no longer had the time for the hobby as I was working 12 hours a day, 6 days a week on a construction site. So my interest in glass resorted to appreciating the work of others.

And then, when Robert was 16, he came home very late from school one day just bursting with excitement. A friend had asked him on the spur of the moment if he could lend a hand that day with a special project. Always willing to help out a friend, Rob went along without any other thought in mind about it. Well, it turns out that the “special project” involved going to a studio down the road where the friend was blowing glass. Rob instantly fell in love with that craft and for the next several years, it was all he was interested in and even earned several scholarships to various colleges and universities based upon his glass work.

The world economy changed drastically during Rob’s last year in college though and the prospects for making a full-time living as a fine artist had grown even tougher than usual, so he decided to expand his range of skills by adding in a minor in Graphic Arts. Rob still dabbles in blowing glass when he can afford the studio costs and supplies and has several pieces on display and for sale in a “The O Gallery”, a local high-end art gallery that features new and upcoming artists. And often now, when in town visiting us “Old Folks”, Robby will wheel me off to our favorite glass gallery to drool over the Chihuly’s and such.

One day, I hope to be well enough and strong enough to join Rob at the studio and to have him teach me how to blow glass. Wouldn’t that be a kick? I just love it when my son teaches me something new, especially when it’s something he’s excited about too. In the meantime, while I dream about being able to take part in such things, I have focused my energy into creating a few digital trompe l’oeil of blown glass perfume bottles. I’ve got no idea on earth what they may be good for, but t’was fun to create. Hope you 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, 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 3.0 license. (See sidebar for details)

Parfumery

Eau-de-L'Amour (The Scent of Love)

"Eau My"

Bleu

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Mucha Do’d It – And So Have I

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As many others who came of age during the 1960’s, I first became familiar with the art of Alphonse Mucha, via the logo and poster works he created for JOB cigarette papers. Although originally created in 1898, in my ignorance (which I was not alone in), I had considered this work as symbolic of the Haight-Ashbury ideal “Flower Child”. It was not until the publication of E.L. Doctorow’s novel, “Ragtime”, in 1975, that I learned not only the name of the artist and the year he created that poster, but also who the model was that inspired him and the history of her infamy. Of course, the model I’m referring to, was Evelyn Nesbit, who first came to the public’s attention as the “The Gibson Girl”, then one of the “Floradora’s”, and finally as “The Girl in the Red Velvet Swing”.

Evelyn’s physical beauty was greatly complimented by the skills of photographers such as Rudolf Eickemeyer Jr.Alfred Stieglitz, and Andrew Pitcairn-Knowles, which then lead to her becoming a favorite model (both from life and from her famed photographs) not only for Gibson and Mucha, but also Aubrey Beardsley and others. As sought after as she was, Evelyn was hardly alone, as the so-called “Edwardian Period” boasted and then promoted a number of strikingly beautiful young woman who’s likenesses made it onto not only works of “fine art” but then quickly exploded into the realm of commercialism by being adapted into poster-art that endorsed various consumer products and trading cards. Some of the most well-known of these beauties, in addition to Evelyn Nesbit, included Lily Elsie, Maude Fealy, Gaynor Rolands, Clara Bow, and Bessie Love. While their names may not be as familiar these days, undoubtedly their photographs and the art they inspired are just as well known and appreciated 100 years later as in their heydey.

Feeling in good company then, I have created my own interpretation of these timelessly classic beauties for my own enjoyment and hopefully, for yours. For your reference, you can view some of the original photographs which inspired my work at these sites: Edwardian Ladies at the The Thinking Tank and Vintage Spirit.

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Evelyn Nesbit

“Miss Evelyn Nesbit (Mrs. Harry K. Thaw)”

Lily Elsie

“Miss Lily Elsie”

Maude Fealy

“Miss Maude Fealey”

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