Monday, October 31, 2011

Peace Beacon

This one reminded me of a special type of light house. Got lucky with the quotation.

Today's Gratitude Item: "Exam Survival Kits". These were handed out by the head of Technology to everyone in the Tech department this morning. Said kits included clever items like a Time Out bar (because that's all the time out you'll get today), nuts (you are not nuts, exams are), a nail file (to take the edge off), some coffee (please don't sleep on the job) and two panadol (in case of headaches). There was more in the box and all of it was thoughtful and fun resulting in a cool start to what will be a busy week.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Marta's Cross

When I saw this one, it immediately reminded me of one of my friends, hence the name.

Today's Gratitude Item: Being able to access the school system (ie: work) remotely (ie: from home). This means being able to easily check emails and write reports from the comfort of my own home.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Stringing Along

Not sure if this one "works". Have the nagging feeling that there is more than the customary quotation missing here.

Today's Gratitude Item: Finding a Terry Goodkind novel in the library that I had not yet read :)

Friday, October 28, 2011

Wind Flower

This one is a cross between a fan and a flower. It was rather fun to create.

Today's Gratitude Item: The work from one of my students that had gone AWOL mysteriously appeared in my pigeon hole today. I knew that said student had handed in the work but it was lost (not by me)! Happily, what once was lost has now been found (I think there's a song about that).

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Blue Grasping

The white background looked much better than the black - a rarity but it does happen.

Today's Gratitude Item: Getting a new computer at school :) The biggest advantage is that it lets me connect with the wireless at home which is great. There are still a few "kinks" to iron out but the change was both unexpected and most welcome. I love shiny new technology.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011


The translucence of this one adds to the appeal. Can't help but think that something otherworldly is lurking near the centre.

Today's Gratitude Item: A colleague has agreed to take one of my more challenging students off my hands. This is a huge relief as with him out of the class, we should be able to revise a lot more effectively.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Star Paper

This one is probably too busy for a long-term desk top wallpaper but I still like it.

Today's Gratitude Item: Progress. As in a number of my students successfully resubmitted one of the assessments which gives them more credits and me a bit more peace of mind. With less than two weeks to go before the seniors leave, the pressure is mounting!

Monday, October 24, 2011

On the Ball

The illusion / 3D effect on this one was a nice surprise.

Today's Gratitude Item: Going back to school tomorrow. Our senior students get a bit more revision and then they are on their own. I'm looking forward to getting this "out of the way". The fact that this last term is crazy short means that even though this set of holidays is over, the next lot are tantalisingly close.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Catching Happiness

Presenting a wavy net which might be useful in "catching happiness".

Today's Gratitude Item: We (as in New Zealand) won the Rugby World Cup. This is a very big deal and its something that we've been waiting for since 1987 (the last time we won). The match was pretty close, final score All Blacks 8 to France 7. That's a bit close for comfort but a win is a win and the entire country will be in party mode tonight and tomorrow.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Say / Know

This one was not as difficult to create as one might think.

Today's Gratitude Item: Getting another "enhanced" sale at Shutterstock. It's my second this month and it was a lovely surprise. Lets just say that "enhanced" licenses are the most expensive (and highest paying) entity offered by SS and getting them is a rarity.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Momentary Peace

This type of design was worth revisiting - played a bit with the colour balance in Paint Shop Pro and the image is better for it.

Today's Gratitude Item: That making changes to the 9th grader's final Mathematics exam did not take as long as anticipated.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Simchat Torah 5772

The words in the symbol are from the last two chapters of Deuteronomy and the first two chapters of Genesis. Tagxedo made creating the symbol a relatively simply affair. The title was inspired by the slogan on one of the paper recycling bins at school.

If you look closely at the 'negative space' in the centre of the symbol, you can sort of see a Star of David which is quite cool.

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: That Shutterstock now sell single image licenses which is great because every time someone buys one of my images using a single license, I get around $5.00. So far I've only had one of these but every little bit helps.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


Sometimes playing with "string" fractals can produce some interesting results - and all too often, said results are most unexpected.

Today's Gratitude Item: That our dance performance went really well this evening. The group had fun and the best part was when just about everyone in the admittedly small audience joined in for the three very easy participation dances on the list. This was a big improvement on last year when people seemed more shy. The increased participation could have something to do with the fact that we said "no dancing - no dessert" (and people really wanted dessert).

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Inevitable Postponed

This one is thanks to the discovery that the"splits" plugin on a final transform works well with a number of other variations. No idea what I'm on about? Fear not, its a technical Apophysis thing.

Today's Gratitude Item: Finally having the time to create a few "clip art" illustrations. It was good to return to an old obsession.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Little Attitude

Sometimes a little attitude is a good thing.

Today's Gratitude Item: Getting home safely from another wonderful dance camp. Had an awesome time and learned a number of fun, new dances. Its always really special going to camp and reconnecting with dancers from around the country.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Great Words

Sometimes that which appears simple at first, is anything but.

Today's Gratitude Item: Its Sunday and I don't have school on Monday! For some reason, being on holiday never gets "old". Perhaps this has something to do with the incredibly long terms we had this year. Teachers sometimes get a lot of flack for the amount of holidays we get but those outside the industry often don't realise quite how much we work during term time. The phrase "burning the candle at both ends" comes to mind.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Monastic Fire

This one is completely different to what usually happens - it turns out that this is a good thing.

Today's Gratitude Item: Catching up with old friends. Its funny how even though you may not have seen each other for a while, with good friends its easy to pick up where you left off.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Handle With Care

This one turned out really well. The quotation is part of a song called African Dream and the lyrics can be read at the preceding link.

Today's Gratitude Item: That information / news / inspiration is so easily available. Its hard to imagine a world without the ability to instantly find information and I still get a buzz from being able to do this.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Unlimited Imagination

This one reminded me of a tree (sans leaves) / tree roots. It came together well.

Today's Gratitude Item: That one of my dancers remembered to retrieve her CD from our audio equipment after we used it. I'm so used to using the ipod that when we do use a CD, more often than not the CD gets left languishing in the machine - not a good thing if said CD is needed elsewhere.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Sukkot 5772

This one took forever to create but doing so was fun. The "Booth Brothers" were in part inspired by M&M characters - in fact, I cheated and used a character from the M&M website to get the arms, legs and microphone right.

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: That its been raining for most of the past two days. This is a good thing as it means not having to water the garden! It also means not feel in guilty for spending a lot of time indoors reading a book (that is part of the point of holidays). To be fair, the rain is not that much of a surprise. It always rains on Sukkot which proves, once and for all that G-d has a sense of humour.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Easy Satisfaction

This one was not really all that "easy" to create but the end result is satisfying.

Today's Gratitude Item: That my balloon / rice / juggling ball experiment work (sort of). Making a juggling ball from balloons and rice was not as easy as the instructions implied and practice is required to get it right. Well, practice and quite a few balloons :)

Monday, October 10, 2011

Soul Wealth

Sometimes the colouring algorithm is really co-operative. This was one of those times.

Today's Gratitude Item: Being loved :) And having people in my life with rather creative ways of expressing said love.

Sunday, October 09, 2011

Courageous Discovery

Sometimes courage is required when working with fractals. Lets just say that success is not always guaranteed.

Today's Gratitude Item: A free Argentinian "care package". Said package contained Argentinian biscuits, two Argentinian tea bags, a miniature blue and white rugby / stress ball and some information on touring Argentina. There was a fiesta outside the library today and they were giving the care packages away which was a lovely gesture. Even better, the tutor who is coming to teach dance camp next week originally hails from Argentina (she's now in Melbourne). She used to be part of our Auckland dance group and we all miss her. My plan is to remove the tourist material from the care package and buy some uniquely kiwi things to fill up the box. Then I'll give her a cute little package containing items from both Auckland and Argentina. It should be fun.

Saturday, October 08, 2011

Like Summer

The quotation captured the situation rather well. I love the long summer days but don't appreciate the heat that accompanies them.

Today's Gratitude Item: A quiet day and an easy fast. I'm really glad that Yom Kippur 5772 is over (at least in my part of the world).

Friday, October 07, 2011

Yom Kippur 5772

Am I the only one that thinks "Yom Kippur" is basically a special type of life insurance??

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: Holidays (aka study break) is finally here! This time we have a luxurious three weeks thanks to the Rugby World Cup. Whilst I'm still going in to work on Thursday to deliver tutorials to senior students, its great not to have to get up so early every day. Fasting is a strange way to start a holiday but that has not dented my enthusiasm.

Thursday, October 06, 2011

Pi Flower

Dedicated to a student of mine who recited the quotation in class. Apparently its from a song and there is more of it than that!

Today's Gratitude Item: The best ever dinner! It featured home grown broccoli, potatoes and eye fillet. There could be a Visa add about this one...

  • Broccoli (home grown): $5.00 (by the time its fertilised watered etc)
  • Potatoes : $0.75
  • Fillet: $4.00 (it was a small portion)
  • The ability to cook : Priceless

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Patient Genius

Both patience and genius would be required to sculpt something like this in the real world. Happily in the virtual world, its a lot easier to make objects like this with minimal effort.

Today's Gratitude Item: Managing to get most of my Mathematics related marking complete. Now I need to get a handle on the technology stuff.

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Star Speech

The word cloud is the result of putting Elie Wiesel's Millennium speech into tagxedo. The nice thing about tagxedo is that it is currently free and it allows users to put in a black and white shape for their clouds. This one is best viewed in the largest possible size so that all the words in the cloud are visible.

Today's Gratitude Item: Getting a replacement laptop bag / backpack. My original backpack disappeared yesterday (with two of my memory sticks inside). I know where I left it and despite my best efforts to recover it, it may be gone forever. Happily, ICT had a spare backpack although its a lot more worn (ie: ugly) than the one that got swiped. Having said that, a "pre-loved" (ie: still ugly) backpack is better than no back pack at all, although I may switch it out for a more individualised (and harder to steal) version. If only I could get those memory sticks back... They did not have anything crucial on them but they were extremely useful and one of them was a bangle type memory stick (lime green) which was very cool. I miss it already :(

Monday, October 03, 2011

Gender Blender

Realising that I could coax apo into colouring this "half and half" was the secret to success.

Today's Gratitude Item: That exam supervision this time around is much better than it was back in June / July. The reason is that this time, when students are done, provided more than an hour has passed they can leave. The result is that towards the end of a session, there are very few students left still writing and often if one is "on" the last slot of a 3 hour exam, one has a pretty good chance of being able to go early.

Sunday, October 02, 2011

Ice Leaves

Got lucky with the final transform. I clicked on it by accident as its not a variation that I tend to use.

Today's Gratitude Item: Finally having a large enough space to set up the speakers which came with my last computer. Happily said speakers work really well and it means being able to listen to music sans headphones (which were awkward).