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2 years a bachelorette

31 Jan

Today I’ve been a bachelorette for two years. It’s a fact. This is neither a celebration, nor a commemoration, nor a homage. This isn’t a life goal either. And this isn’t a failure.

Or is it?

Heart shape filled with color

I love the idea of love and am glad for those who are in a relationship they strive in. I am not sad that this isn’t my case. In practice, that isn’t for me.

I have had many happy moments in all of my past relationships and I cherish those memories. I am blessed with a selective memory that ensures I retain hardly any bitterness from the unhappy times.

There isn’t any “yet” yet. That is all. The anniversary was on my mind simply because I was reminded that there was a time when a dear friend of mine had posited that I could not be single. It may have been the case indeed, or it may have shaped what I did after, or it may not have been true. If it was, it hasn’t been for a while.

Pranking

29 Jan

This week was a good week. I engineered a prank at work that brought much fun and entertainment, and made that week even better. A prank in 3 acts.

Act 1

We use Zoom for our meetings and when I noticed, just as I was leaving at the end of a meeting, that a colleague of mine wasn’t at his desk, I thought I just had missed an opportunity to take a screenshot of his room without him, and later use it as my own background image and see his face as he realized!

So I went back, found his room still empty and quickly took a screenshot. I was in the process of making my window bigger to take a better screenshot when he showed up. Uh oh! “Oh, you were waiting for me to return?,” he asked. I couldn’t quickly enough come up with a good excuse for the probably guilty look on my face, so I just fessed up. Good laugh was had. And see you next time, wink wink!

The next thing I did was to quickly edit out his name from the bottom left part of the screenshot. I saved the photo somewhere I could open it on my iPhone and used the “healing” tool of Snapseed (my favourite —and free— image edition software on smartphone), which basically redraws an area of your choice using its surrounding. Then I adjusted a bit the sharpness and reduced the noise to get the best out of that pretty small screenshot.

Then I tested it as my own Zoom virtual background 👌and gave him a preview.

A glimpse of the result

Act 2

I wrote to everyone-but-him in the team who usually attends our weekly all-hands meeting (which was the next day) and shared my “work” and the context, offering them to join me in escalating the prank, since I had been made.

And it turned out so so much better this way.

Response was high. But then, who isn’t in for a bit of harmless fun? Especially when it’s so easy to set up.

Someone had suggested some particular timing: our colleague usually gets to speak early in the meeting and that was going to be our cue to all switch to our virtual background of his soon-worldwide-office.

Act 3

The meeting started as usual and people, who were a bit more numerous than habitual, kept a very straight face. Our colleague was called to speak and most of the tiles in the gallery instantly changed!

Escalated prank

Everyone yielded to the smiles that had been suppressed and for a few moments none of us heard him. We were too focused on awaiting his reaction. And yet, he continued to talk, unaware, for a few seconds until wrapping up. At the exact moment he briefly paused, hesitated, apparently lost track of his thought and then finished his word, we knew he was finally looking at his screen and he was confused.

Mischief managed!

He was not expecting that, to our delight! Hearing his heartfelt laugh was such a reward. Another bonus was seeing a number of colleagues who usually don’t start their video in meetings. I enjoyed immensely seeing a whole room of smiling people.

My Drawvember 2020

31 Oct

Now that Inktober just finished, I am hanging on to my drawing tools for Drawvember!

My friend Virginie G. and her friend Anaïs B. seem interested in joining me \o/ I have enjoyed their October drawings and am looking forward to their November ones! I would find it fun if other people joined too ٩(^ᴗ^)۶

Last year I did six series of 5 drawings on a given theme or technique and I really liked it, but this year I compiled a list of prompts, and will use any medium or technique I like:

  • Dragon
  • Robot
  • Fur
  • Cherub
  • Carnival
  • Prey
  • Pyramid
  • Crane
  • Diving
  • Pounce
  • Buccaneer
  • Altitude
  • Shipwreck
  • Zebra
  • Drums
  • Cougar
  • Boat
  • Planet
  • Sullen
  • Jellyfish
  • Monkey
  • Angel
  • Vanquish
  • Depth
  • Villain
  • Lipstick
  • Cliff
  • Pure
  • Elf
  • Tower

Any technique! Let me know @koalie if you join my Drawvember 2020!


Here is the prompt list in light or dark:

Inktober 2020 days 1-5

11 Oct

It’s the fifth year in a row I’m doing Inktober. Rules are simple: A different prompt every day. Use ink. Enjoy. Learn new techniques, or not.

Some choose to not use any prompt. I prefer to, because I would not know what to draw most days. Some create their own prompts, or follow different thematic prompts. I prefer to stick to those proposed by Inktober creator Jake Parker because I find it easier.

I was ambivalent at first and nearly did not participate this year, but the day before, Virginie G. nudged me and another artist she follows, and I sensed she needed not to be alone doing it. I was in.

It’s the second year I’ve been using some of the supplies from my monthly Sketchbox subscription, except the Pentel Brushpen, which I have had for decades. Without further ado, here are the first five:

Day 1: “Fish”

Studio Ghibli inspired piece. Done using a sepia ink drawing pen from Kuretake Zig, and Uni Emott pens in pink-red and yellow.

Day 2: “Wisp”

A Disney character: Hades. I used a grey ink cartoonist brush pen from Kuretake Zig, and my beloved black ink Brushpen by Pentel.

Day 3: “Bulky”

Awkward big baby elephant sitting on a rock. I used a fine brush dipped in walnut ink, and a Pentel black ink Brushpen.

Day 4: “Radio”

The prompt didn’t inspire my very much. I looked for radio images in DuckDuckGo and copied the first vintage radio I found, using a 0.05 mm black ink Graphik line maker from Derwent.

Day 5: “Blade”

My first thought of course was to draw a samurai. I love samurais! I’ve drawn dozens of them but never drew ice skates before. Using negative space for the cloud of ice was a challenge and it would have been much better in graphite, pencil or charcoal. But it’s neither graphitober, penciltober nor charcoaltober. It’s Inktober, so I used a 0.05 mm black ink Graphik line maker from Derwent, and a Pentel Brushpen to fill the larger black areas.

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