Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Life update

I've been busy.  I've been creating. I have not been posting stuff to the internet.  I have not been overworking.  The side job actually ended at the end of 2016.  I got a call a month ago about doing stuff for the company that took over but I haven't heard anything since.

Meanwhile, I've been taking care of mine & Mom's medical & dental health.  I have lost my first adult tooth.  It had a root canal.  It had a well fitted crown.  It cracked down the middle anyway.  There was no more saving it.  It's been a painful 5 months.

So, I've come full circle with the hobbies. Right now I'm back into computers & electronics.  I guess it started with the timelapse camera last August when I had to pull out my soldering iron after 20 years in the closet.  I packed it away in 1997 when I started preparing to sell my Texas house.  I built a small computer around 2003, and I had an idea to make a really small computer as small as a cigar box.  Never got around to it.  But then last year's project got me into it again.  Computers are now the size of a finger.  Just tonight I assembled a computer which is the size of deck of cards, posting from it now!

Mom's getting more forgetful every day.  She'd leave the water running, which in California is more expensive than electricity.  She'd leave upstairs TV on while she spends the day downstairs.  She'll forget she's got something on the stovetop & go out to the garden for an hour.  I'd come home to another burnt pot.  My current project is to automate the house.  These things are now easily obtainable but expensive and they don't necessarily work as easily as my DIY projects.  Right now I'm working on a porch camera & a motion detector for the stairs which I will activate an LED strip or electroluminescent wire (haven't decided yet.)

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Another POV camera!

Google Glass, Snapchat Spectacles, move over!  I could never afford them.  I could never find them.  I wear prescription glasses, I couldn't drive and wear those at the same time.  They have very short battery time, like 30 minutes, I heard?    BOOM, look what I made for $40.  That's just the cost of the little thumb drive-sized camera.  Granted it's only 640x480 resolution, but it's light enough to carry on top of my eyeglass frames.  It does still, it does video, it does audio, I can record up to two hours!  I can take it off and be normal.



 The 3D printed (manually) part snaps on to the arm and rests on top of the frame.

Then clamp the camera onto the plastic part.  My first attempt hung to the right of my temple but I found that it obscured my side vision when driving.

I don't wear beanies or headbands.  Those would be good options for future travel.  But if I'm awake, I always have my glasses on.



Oh...no real art goals for 2017.  I just want to keep creating.  I'm considering replacing my Flickr photos with short videos. 

Monday, January 2, 2017

Last art of 2016

Oi, where did 2016 go?  My side job has fizzled after over 7 years.  I haven't had any side work for over 2 months, so I'm trying to figure out where my time went.  I did work over a weekend for my regular job in which I received comp time, which I used when I caught a cold.  Awesome - must be my fastest recovery ever.  I never liked coloring books when I was a kid.  Life is so much more fun when you don't stay to the lines.    But I was missing art, so I got a little one dollar 4in x 6in coloring book.

I had a cheap set of felt tip pens.  They didn't even last one page, I threw it away.  So I tried sharpies.  But sharpies bleed through and they smell, and I only have 12 colors.  I tried water soluble Neocolors.  The paper is thick, so it didn't warp with water, but it's hard to start & stop at the lines --- those damn lines!  I must break free.

 OMG, I've had prisma colored pencils for ages.  They were never any good to me for anything because I don't have the patience to burnish or blend with these things.   But OOO, they're great in adult coloring books.
 So that's what I've been up to.  Colored pencils in a coloring book. 
Other than that, my house is falling apart, so that's where my time and money have been going.  I had a leak in a fire sprinkler.  That happened on a Friday night, so I had to pay the weekend emergency price to fix it.  Luckily no water damage to the house.  Still got a hole in the ceiling to fix.  Then I couldn't turn on the heater when it got cold because the thermostat died a horrible death.  18 year old batteries corroded in the unit.  I didn't even know it ran on batteries.  So it got updated :)

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Another Milestone in Life

In addition to this....


I still want a 3D printer.  We got one at work a month ago, but the asshole who got management to buy it hogs all the time on it.  I opened it up to look at the documentation and basically got yelled at.  Ha, Karma's a bitch and he's had nothing but problems with his prints.  Yea, I have no hands on experience with a real printer, so anything I say is just theory from all the videos I've watched since January.  That and whatever is applicable that I learned on the 3d pen.  Unlike  him, when something isn't going right, I don't have to be told to MAKE AN ADJUSTMENT.


There's also a new camera I wanted, it just came out.  But it looks like deliveries are going to take a while.  I think I'm closer to buying the 3D printer than I am the electric bicycle.  I've got to get rid of a few things first to make room.

Thursday, August 4, 2016

DIY camera

I dun it :)  Yup, I set out to build a camera based on the little raspberry pi zero and then make an enclosure with my 3D pen.  I did have to buy black filament because if you use any other color, it may tint the photo.  I started out packaging it as they do but it was too thick for my needs.  I repackaged it so that it's thinner, though I had to sacrifice length.
 Front (above)
 Back (above)  Kinda hard to see, but this is the camera side.
 Side view (above)  So the plan is to have the control part in my pocket, with the camera sensor outside the pocket.  The cable is protected from the top & bottom.
 The electronics is mounted to the bottom "plate".  And the cover slides over the top.  Could be thinner, it's like a skinny handheld remote.  Tough to make thinner though, as I'm making the plastic enclosure by hand.
 This is the camera sensor.
The LEDs are covered with clear filament because they're a bit too bright.  I was trying to diffuse the light. 

Before I enclosed the camera, I tested out the battery.  It lasts exactly 2 hours before the camera died abruptly.  I risk corrupting the the SD card that way, in fact I did.  But I've learned to recover it, HA!

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Nothing new in a month

That's not to say I haven't been creating.  I'm gathering materials to make my own camera.  Why?  Why do I draw when I can just take a picture?  Because I can and because it's fun and I hope to learn something from it.  Then I'm going make my own enclosure with my 3d pen.

Meanwhile, I've been creating short videos, aka vlogs.  The content is private & emo, so they'll probably never be shared.  This is how I'm learning the technical side of editing video and audio.  I thought I'd have to wait until I made my own camera, but I was counting all the retired cameras in the house which are capable of video: 4 Canon ELPH point-n-shoot, Canon 50, GoPro 3, Polaroid Cube, iPhone, iPad, 2 laptops.  Maybe capable, but not necessarily practical.  Then I discovered that I already had Movie Maker on my Win10 laptop and I have iMovie on my iPad.  I didn't have to buy anything to get started.

Now I want to go somewhere, but I've sent away my passport for renewal.

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Getting the Roku box off the table

Last month I cleaned off my desk by mounting my monitor up on a pole  (aka dual monitor mount).  One of the things that stayed on the desk was the Roku3...until now.  So two layers was good enough to hold it like a shelf.  I thought it would need tie wrap to keep it from falling off but, amazingly, it stays up on the pole.

Here it is in in place

So now I want to get the power bar off the desk but it hast to stay within reach.  No ideas yet...

Saturday, June 4, 2016

I haven't been keeping up

What is it?
 
  The magnetic latch on the screen door doesn't always hold.  This is more reliable.
 
They used to sell a clip for iphones to redirect sound off the speaker.  I can't find it, so I made one, but this goes over my plastic case, too.  Custom fit.
 
These are flexible filament feathers.  I'm going to use them as book marks in my sketchbooks.
 
So Mom was still finding a way to screw up the TV by mashing random buttons.  I had to cover more buttons.
 
Here it is on the remote.  It goes on and off easily so that I can access the menus.

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Another box

So the first box was Mom's birthday present, only about 6 weeks late.  This is her mother's day present, only a couple weeks late, LOL.  She really loved the other one.  She said she likes this one too, but I told her she has to say that because she's my mother. This is looser than I intended but I was limited by my brushes.  My finest brush was still too thick for this scale  (the box is 9in X 3.5IN x 3.5in). 

Thursday, May 19, 2016

I painted a box


Not the finest art, more like crafty art.  So I've been busy reorganizing my office/art space.  I put my monitors up on a dual stand to get all the cables off my desk and make room to do stuff.  I was trying to clear under my desk...that didn't work out so well, I've just got different stuff under my desk now and the art supplies that were under my desk is now up on new wire shelves.  What the reorganization did was 1) clear my desk top for projects and 2) clear the French doors behind my desk so that I can swing them open now.  I've got to wait til Sunday night to throw out more empty boxes or else they'll find their way back into the house.

Then Mom was sitting at my desk, snooping around, and she found these wooden pencil boxes I'd bought with the intention to color with oil pencils and she wanted them.  I lost interest in the oil pencils after one flower.  But they weren't empty!  Oh yea, I found my first set of printmaking paints and the linocut tool.  I totally lost them, so I'd bought another tool and more paints.  And I found my Dremel Tool bits, DOH!

I was almost ready to donate my old acrylic paints because I haven't touched them in over a year.  A couple of them (browns) are like gel now, but they were going that way years ago.  But this was fun.  I still have peacock feathers on my brain, so I'm going to do some kind of abstract peacock pattern on the other box before giving it to Mom.  And I'm going to keep my paints, they're still fun. 

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

Flexible camera case

I wasn't satisfied with the purple camera case, so I solved a few problems:
  1. Mom kept finding another way to put the camera in that it wasn't meant to go, which meant she forced it.  I don't see damage to the camera or the case, but it hasn't been in use for very long.
  2. I didn't like how the camera rattled inside the case, it was a hard case.  Rattling means friction or impact, however minor.  At least you couldn't sit on it and damage the screen.
  3. Camera retention is less secure, but the point is to cushion the camera while it's bouncing around in a bag.  The damage to Mom's previous cameras were on the screens from bouncing around in her bag.  Anyway, I'm taking advantage of the flexibility of the material.  I have an opening on the end and rely on the plastic to spring back to its closed position on its own.
  4. I was wondering how I was going to use up a pound of flexible filament.  This material is better suited to covering electronics like cameras & phones. 

Friday, April 29, 2016

Headphone hanger

I've been hanging my headphones from a twisted paperclip.  Can't buy this anywhere because this cubicle system is outdated.  The company probably bought these walls on craigslist or ebay.  So the cubicle walls have slots that you can hook onto, if you can fit it in the slot.  That's how the bookshelf hangs.  Anything else, you have to pin to the cloth or use little magnets, neither of which is strong enough to hold the headphones.  It's probably been in use for 2 weeks now.  I forgot to take a picture before bringing it to work.