Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Israeli Architecture

Creating the "star of David" braid for this one took a while - but the effort was well worth it.

Today's Gratitude Item: That I managed to convince my local library to waive a $3.00 fine which was showing on my account. It's a long, somewhat silly story but it has a happy ending so it's all good.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Flower Flow

The bits on the side seemed like a good idea at the time. Now I'm not so sure.

Today's Gratitude Item: That I was not the only one who was 'disappointed' with the "Positive Behaviour for Learning" presentation we were subjected to yesterday afternoon. Said presentation lasted around 45 mins (which was about 35 mins longer than it needed to be) and the presenter was both ill prepared and boring. Ironically he was from the Ministry of Education. Let's just say that if I presented information to my classes the way he presented the information yesterday, I'd deserve to be fired. Turns out that my colleagues were similarly unimpressed and it's good to know that I am not alone in feeling that the entire meeting was a complete waste of time.

Monday, October 29, 2012

Until We Meet Again

This one was created to farewell the principal at our school. He has headed over the ditch (hence the Aussie flag).

He also has Irish ancestors so it made sense to put the verse in Gaelic. Happily the translation was found over at the Irish Gaelic Translator page.

Today's Gratitude Item: That somehow burning data to DVD's is easier now than it used to be. This could have something to do with Windows 7 (as opposed to older operating systems). All I know is that today I burned some student work onto a DVD and then needed to add more files to said disc. Happily this was easily done - much to my surprise.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Polar Blast

This one is a variant of a background that I made for an unrelated project. The form was quite nice and it seemed a shame to "waste" it on something that relatively few people would see.

Today's Gratitude Item: A quiet Sunday where I did not have to do any school work.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Soft Success

This is similar to previous images but the white background and soft colours made it worth revisiting.

Today's Gratitude Item: Students who don't mind doing school work on weekends. Having said students email through work for approval / comment is never an inconvenience. I only wish more of my students took their studies so seriously.

Friday, October 26, 2012

Fall Print

The lines in this one are reminiscent of fingerprints. The colours are those of early autumn. Thus the name "Fall Print" was a logical move.

Today's Gratitude Item: Finally getting times for my "Computing Catch Up Sessions" sorted. Our senior students go on study leave in a week and a half but many of my students are not quite finished their assessment work. I've now arranged some extra time for them to get the work done which is good. The kids are generally pleased about it and it means that instead of giving up because they think there is no point, they are working quite well (knowing that the more they do in class, the less they will have to do in 'catch up' time).

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Church Wall

As in a combination of brickwork and crosses.

Today's Gratitude Item: Deciding to go for a long walk outside even though I got home late and was quite tired. Said walk paid off in that it was an opportunity to de stress, refresh and clear my head. Finding $2.00 on the way home was an added bonus.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Glass Spindle

The diamond pattern on this one was particularly appealing.

Today's Gratitude Item: That the usability evaluation that I did (using my parents as semi-willing volunteers) worked really well. My students will need to do something similar and I needed to give them an example of what is expected. Getting my dad to take a picture using my iPad and email it to me was an interesting exercise and highlighted a number of usability issues with the device. If one has never used an iPad before there are some things that are not at all clear. Closing down applications is one of those things and it was both fun and interesting to watch my dad try and figure it out. Luckily dad is a really good sport!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

City Scrapers

This one could be a city abstract, complete with sky scrapers.

Today's Gratitude Item: A cloudy morning. It meant being able to see my computer screen (and thus work) in the car on the way to school this morning. The entire point of car pooling is to allow one to save fuel and driving time by sharing. Needless to say the 'work in the car' thing is easier in Winter when it is dark in the mornings.

Monday, October 22, 2012

Cat's Tail

Imagine a fractal tabby cat sitting on a fractal carpet. Take a photo of its tail and this could be the result.

Today's Gratitude Item: Having a student thank me for the fact that I answer emails on the weekend. Being appreciated is a wonderful feeling.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Bright Checkers

This combines two things that make me really happy. Spirals and checkers. Only downside is the distinct possibility that the spiral addiction is winning.

Today's Gratitude Item: Being back home safely after a wonderful day of dancing yesterday. It was nice to get out of Auckland and be involved in a 'full on' (but fun) workshop. Was really great to catch up with other dancers from the North Island.

Friday, October 19, 2012

Golden Grate

Not to be confused with the bridge of a similar name.

Today's Gratitude Item: A long weekend which will feature a fair bit of dancing.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Lantern Waves

For some reason this one reminded me of the paper lanterns we used to make as kids.

Today's Gratitude Item: Comment moderation! It's great to be able to reject dodgy comments and keep this blog clean and positive. Had a particularly nasty comment come through today and deleting it gave me intense satisfaction. I suspect it was from someone who infringed on my copyright and was upset that they were subsequently forced to remove the content.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Blue Treads

It was only after this was rendered and put in my graphics program that I saw the resemblance to tyre treads. This one took a whopping 4+ hours to render.

Today's Gratitude Item: Using the ladies room before leaving for home. The decision not to try and 'hold it' was a good one. Usually the trip home from dance is quick taking less than 25 minutes. Today it took almost twice as long thanks to an 'incident' on the harbour bridge. Combine said 'incident' with scheduled roadworks and the major route North shrinks from 4 lanes into 1. Not fun, but at least I was comfortable and the radio made good company.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Dusky Glass Hooks

Definitely not my taste. Having said that, I'm almost certain this will be appealing to someone out there.

Today's Gratitude Item: That someone "out there" who was unwittingly infringing on copyright by using one of my images decided to license it (ie: pay for the privilege of using the work). It's always very nice when that happens.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Ribbon Candy

This one reminds me of a hard-boiled lolly (mint flavoured).

Today's Gratitude Item: That one of my students entered the game he made in Information Technology in a competition and he is now a finalist. If you are still reading, please vote for him by clicking on the green "Vote for people's choice award" rectangle at the preceding link (voting closes 30th October 2012). Then tweet about it / repost it / email it to your contacts. You can play the game at the preceding link. It's a bit addictive so you have been warned :)

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Light Waves

Took too long to get to this stage. It's pretty enough but this time, the process was more frustrating than fun.

Today's Gratitude Item: That my new graphics tablet is much more sensitive than the old one. It makes a big difference when illustrating. Having said that, the 'touch' feature is not as useful as I thought it would be, especially when compared to the sensitivity of the pen tool. Happily, 'touch' is very easy to turn on / off.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Hot Ribbons

I believe this one falls in the "Simple but Effective" category

Today's Gratitude Item: Sushi for lunch. Whilst I love sushi, indulging is a rare treat and it made today that much more special.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Xmas Halt

The clip-art for this one is based on a photo taken before the Christmas break. You can tell because the kid in it is wearing a Santa hat.

Today's Gratitude Item: Getting an Intuos5 graphics tablet. My old tablet needed replacing mainly because from time to time it would refuse to work (requiring a system restore). One of the exciting things about the Intuous5 is that it supports touch / multi-touch gestures. It will take a while to get used to this cool new tool but so far, so good.

Thursday, October 11, 2012

Ring Stack

Reminded me of stacks of rings, hence the title.

Today's Gratitude Item: Finally getting my graphic for Chanukah done. I know it's early but I wanted to get it completed before going back to school next week. Said image will of course feature on this blog in due course.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012


Just like confession, this one is good for the soul.

Today's Gratitude Item: That the DP at school has emailed the entire staff asking them to vote for my entry in the Interface 2012 awards. This one is a bit tricky as only education professionals (in New Zealand) get to vote. Voting closes on the 7th November so it's now a bit of a waiting game to see who wins.

Tuesday, October 09, 2012

Braid Bluge

It's a variation on a theme but it looked quite pretty so it got rendered.

Today's Gratitude Item: Natural justice. Like when someone not only breaches copyright but hot links to images that I am hosting. This means that I can replace said image with something 'unexpected'? Confused? Here's an example. I could have put in something a lot worse and am wondering how long it will take the site owners to fix the problem. Needless to say, doing this was a lot more satisfying than filing a DMCA notice.

Monday, October 08, 2012

Simchat Torah 5773

Took forever to create this one. Please take a moment to enjoy the background 'star burst' effect as getting it right was fairly painful.

You can access the large version of this graphic by clicking on the image above. Images that are related to Jewish Holidays live at the preceding link where you can browse by holiday and download the image in high resolution (for printing etc).

Today's Gratitude Item: Getting an email saying that I'm a finalist in the Interface Awards (2012). I entered the "best teaching with ICT" category back in September and have made it to the final five which is quite good (assuming of course that there were more than 5 entries). Voting for the winner starts soon so at that point I'll be on a mission to convince my friends, relatives and even random strangers to go on-line and help me to win.

Sunday, October 07, 2012

Ins and Outs

Tried a mixture of variants on the final transform and this appeared.

Today's Gratitude Item: That everyone joined in the dancing for Simchat Torah tonight. I know the actual festival is a few days away but the reform community here celebrated tonight and asked my group to dance. We did and then had some participation dances. Having everyone join in made it really special / fun.

Saturday, October 06, 2012

Round Holes

This is one of those times when "square pegs" would feel out of place.

Today's Gratitude Item: Onion flakes. Turns out that they are great when used to flavour omelette. They add a whole new dimension to the dish :)

Friday, October 05, 2012

Eye on the Prize

Another variation on a theme that worked well. One of my older 'basic' parameters has generated a score of cool images.

Today's Gratitude Item: Getting back into illustrating. The Christmas themed images that I created will feature on this blog in due course (don't say you weren't warned). Creating said images was doubly strange as Christmas is still quite a while away and even when it does arrive, I don't celebrate! Said illustrations were created mainly to see if they will sell over on Shutterstock.

Thursday, October 04, 2012

Double Arch

Why settle for one arch when you can get two?

Today's Gratitude Item: Amusing card tricks. Usually I'm very bad at doing 'magic' tricks but have finally found a trick that works brilliantly. It's so easy to perform that even I can pull it off. Said trick is useful for teaching something called 'error control' and it's needed for the Information Technology course that I teach. Practising (aka showing off) on family has been a lot of fun.

Wednesday, October 03, 2012


Was surprisingly tricky to create.

Today's Gratitude Item: Having seven dancers (including yours truly) willing to perform for Simchat Torah on Sunday night. Our choreography is looking good and everyone seems confident. I'm especially pleased that one of the group who has been with us for a while is going to be taking part. This is a first for her - previously she has preferred to watch the performance and then join in with the participation dances so seeing her become more involved is really exciting.

Tuesday, October 02, 2012


Had fun with this one.

Today's Gratitude Item: That revisiting old 'params' is a great technique for creating new fractals.

Monday, October 01, 2012

Ground Rules

This post has been a long time coming but it seemed like a good idea to post something official about the status of my images / copyright. It turns out that my work has turned up in a number of places - some of it without my knowledge / consent. So this is where I remind visitors that all images on this blog are COPYRIGHTED. That means you can't post them to your blog / photobucket / website without incurring my wrath (unless of course we've had some sort of conversation).

You ABSOLUTELY cannot edit / change my images and then put them on your blog / glog / or YouTube video. That's not what they are for.

The wallpapers that appear almost everyday are for personal use only. So if you like what you see and want it for your background - go for it. A comment / note back that you are using said wallpaper would be appreciated (but is not absolutely necessary).
The only exception to this is my Chag Imageswhich are meant to be used as needed by the wider Jewish Community and those are not copyrighted.

If you are a fellow blogger and you want to put my stuff on your blog, please ask me nicely and I'll tell you how to attribute / acknowledge the source. Rest assured that if you are a non-profit entity, then most of the time, I'm happy to share but attribution is not optional.

If you are a commercial enterprise and want to use my work, I have great news. It's all for sale! You can either deal direct or you can grab it off Shutterstock. Needless to say I'd appreciate the support. The "Starving" in "Starving Artist" simply does not hold that much appeal.

If you are looking for images that you can use without infringing copyright / stepping on anyone's toes, you might find the video below useful. It was made, in part for my students but I'm hoping that it appeals to a wider audience.

I'm done "ranting" and my customary fractal / Gratitude Item will be back tomorrow.