All posts by Tessa Lancer

The Art Movement of Comics

If you were to ask someone if comic books could be considered a legitimate art form about fifty years ago, not only would you be scolded but you would also be asked to relinquish your comics for the safety of the public. Especially if you were a kid.

Yes indeed, comic books have come a long way since the early days when they were generally used to promote war propaganda and patriotism throughout the United States. With EC comics being one of the first game changers in the industry, people began to take notice and saw these colorful panels as nothing but a nuisance to their children. As a matter of fact, psychologist Fredric Wertham rallied against both television and comics. He even went so far as to write a book called “The Seduction of the Innocent” to convince people that comics were destroying their youth and that television was nothing but a school for violence.

After his trial against EC comics, a large majority of comic book stores were closed, some of those in the comic industry lost their jobs and homes and there was even word of some of them committing suicide because of how hopeless the medium seemed at the time. Comics were nearly wiped off the face of the earth but it miraculously survived and now it’s an integral part of society.

Anywhere you look, someone’s got a Captain America shield pin on their backpack, a Batman cowl or even the popular Superman shirt. Nowadays, comics and geekdom have become more accepted than ever, having people relate to their heroes, or villains, with certain issues of today. A great example of this is how Marvel intertwines the real world into the X-Men scene with the first same-sex marriage of two mutants in New York City and Barack Obama being featured in an issue of Spider-Man.

The more time progresses, the more it’s becoming obvious that comics are an undeniably strong part of the artistic community. Jim Lee, a famous artist of Superman, X-Men and many other comics, has some of his most notable work framed and sold at a maximum of five to six figures. A comic book artist being lauded with such powerful imagery would have never even been thought of decades prior. Instead, people would have seen him as an impeccable artist that wastes his time with childish sketches.

But comics are far from childish and being waste of time. Hollywood doesn’t deem comics a waste of time since most of their revenue now is coming from titles like Avengers, X-Men and Batman. The public doesn’t deem it a waste since they pour hundreds of millions of dollars into costumes and conventions to celebrate this timeless art form. So then can we finally, as an art community, say that comic books are just as respectable a creative endeavor as Van Gogh’s Post-Impressionism? Or Kandinsky’s abstract paintings? Perhaps, but for now, pop open a comic and enjoy the handheld gallery.

Tron and Artistic Relationships

I believe that TRON is one of the most important movies of the artistic community. Yes, the movies where people ride light cycles and throw glowing disks at each other.

When most people look at TRON, they either see a cool movie from the 80s that took advantage of the information age that was just emerging at the time or a living Daft Punk soundtrack with stunning visual effects and all the charms of Olivia Wilde in the 2010 sequel. What I see is something completely different. I see symbiosis, one between a creator and his creation.

The original TRON premise is basically a computer programmer who tries to hack the mainframe of his software company, ENCOM, to prove that one of his colleagues plagiarized his work. When sucked into the digital world, all of the programs take humanoid forms and, eventually, he is able to defeat the Master Control Program and get proof of the plagiarism.

In the sequel, his son goes looking for him after he goes missing only to get sucked into the same type of virtual world, have an adventure similar to his father and help save the world from being damaged by overzealous programs.

Now, when an artist paints a picture or a writer crafts a short story, little do they know that they’ve created a world. Maybe not one as impressive and dazzling as TRON, but a world nonetheless. Could you imagine being sucked into your latest painting or story and having to abide by the rules and social constructs the creation has put forth? Having the creator and the creation interact on an intimate level causes some of the most powerful experiences, sometimes too strong to have the relationship continue.

In the TRON sequel, the father, Flynn, reveals that he created a digital duplicate of himself called CLU (Codified Likeness Utility) to run The Grid along with the head of Grid Security, Tron. Long story short, things got out of control and CLU turned into a tyrannical perfectionist. But why? Flynn, the creator, had been gone for too long, leaving his creation with no purpose, no guide and, ultimately, no help. It was in this that CLU, his digital doppelganger, wanted to purge everything that didn’t fit his vision of a perfect world.

Ultimately, CLU brings out all his frustrations against his creator and the two integrate themselves to destroy one another.

When creating a piece of digital art, I believe that it’s important to not just hit the save button in Microsoft Word and leave it or sketch something out and walk away. I believe every creation, no matter how small or large, needs a purpose; an end. It is up to us as creators of our mediums to give that to what we make so that they are not wasted shards of our imagination, a lingering scrap of what could have been a masterpiece.

So remember: Respect your creations and make them your passion instead of just your work.

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5 Common Mistakes To Avoid When Buying A Used Car

The used car market is huge, and every day lots of people are spending way too much money when they buy a used car. Dealers count on this. In fact, the used car section of most new car dealerships is one of the most profitable departments for the dealer. There are usually very common mistakes that most people make that cost them money. Let’s review them here:

1. Not doing advance research to know what their current car is worth. This is a very common mistake that is so easy to solve today. There are two major providers of used car value information in the US and they are (1) Kelly Blue Book and (2) the NADA Guide. It used to be that you had to find someone who had a copy of one of either of them to find out what your vehicle is worth. But now all you have to do is just log onto the internet and go to their websites to get a quick, easy figure with no hassle. It’s worth the time taken to know what your car is worth as you start to negotiate a trade-in or sale.

2. Not doing the homework needed to find out what car will be best for you. All too often shoppers make the mistake of getting too focused on one particular brand or model and not even considering alternatives, simply because either they don’t know about the others, or they are just allowing emotions to rule their buying decision instead of being well-informed. If you get too emotionally attached to one car, this plays into the hands of the dealer and you will most likely pay a lot more for the car than you would if didn’t let emotion control the process.

3. Not arranging financing beforehand. These days it just makes no sense to rely on a car dealer to finance your vehicle for you after you have picked it out. When you do that you are now allowing the dealer to mark up the financing arrangements and get paid a portion of the loan profits as a result. You will never usually notice it though because it is hidden in the monthly payments. Instead, there are many great loan companies that offer loans direct to consumers over the internet, and you can get all of your financing needs taken care of in advance. This leaves you free to negotiate the very best deal for the car you want without financing entering the picture and muddying the waters.

4. Not doing a thorough test drive. It’s amazing how many people only spend a few minutes in a car that they plan to use for the next several years and call it a test drive. Especially with used cars you need to get to know that car and make sure that it performs as you desire in whatever kind of driving conditions that you plan to use it, and take the time necessary to test it thoroughly. Also make sure that anyone else can fit into the car comfortably if you have family and friends that travel with you often.

5. Not having the car inspected by a qualified mechanic. This is perhaps one of the most significant reasons that buyers wind up with a car that has problems. Unless you are a mechanic yourself, you most likely will not be able to truly determine the mechanical condition of the car. By taking it to an independent mechanic and asking for a written report on the vehicle’s condition, you should have a pretty good idea of whether this car is in sound condition or not.

If you avoid the common mistakes mentioned above on how to find best used cars melbourne, you can often buy a used car at the right price, that fits your needs and wants, and get peace of mind in the bargain.

About Digital Art

Today, Digital Art has become a full fledged industry. With highly specialized tasks being skillfully carried out by graphic designers, the entire segment is booming with influx of creative talent and more intricate and complex work to deal with. There are various styles or forms of digital art such as vectors, fractals, mixed media and digital painting. Each one is unique and different in its own which makes it essential to understand the key basics of each one.

Vector is a technique of digital art which uses software’s such as Illustrator or Freehand or Corel Draw. The image is created in a virtual environment using various shapes and patterns. Each of the shape and pattern can be filled with various colors. The final output in most cases resembles a graphic look which is equally eye catchy and leaves a long lasting impact on the viewers. Vectors are most used in advertisements and other forms of mass media.

Fractals – This form of digital art has been re-emerging after a time period. It is most widely used in the natural world. Well, the closer you zoom in to the image, the finer the details are visible. The entire concept of creating fractal images is through mathematical formulae for which you have specially developed software. The fractal programmed works through three main processes viz setting up of parameters of fractal software, executing the lengthy calculation and finally evaluating the final outcome.

Mixed Media – Also called as integrated art, this form of digital painting gained rapid popularity in the 90s on account of the launch of Photoshop software. As the name suggests, you can easily mix and use painting, photography, drawing and other art forms to develop desired results. This form of digital art has been preferred by most emerging and established arts on account of flexibility and ability to create using various art styles simultaneously.

Digital Painting – Well, put in simple terms, you can apply various traditional painting methods digitally to create your own art product. An artist can use various art techniques such as oils, impasto, charcoals, oils, acrylic and even pastels with special digital software to get the desired results. For enhancing effects you could even adapt to using brush strokes, colour blending and other painting techniques too.


Save Time Shopping for Used Car By Browsing Online First

The traditional car buying experience is often seen as an overwhelming task. But thanks to the Web, customers can save time and enter a dealership precisely knowing what they want to buy.

How many times have you started the process by visiting different car dealerships? Purchasing a new or used car in melbourne is a significant investment and you will hopefully be keeping your vehicle for awhile. You likely have certain features and options in mind, which will help narrow the scope of which models you will consider. But because you want to find the best car to meet your needs, the process can be intense and arduous.

Many car companies and dealerships are posting their inventory online so you can search for a car to best suit your needs. If you begin with the website as your first step, when you walk into the dealership, you have a narrowed list of vehicles that have the features you want, in your price range and you don’t have to waste a lot of time driving around from one dealership to another.

There are three different types of auto retail sites available for car buyers and each has its own unique advantages.

The Coast-to-Coast Dealer’s Website

When browsing online for your car, one of your primary concerns may be selection. CarMax is an online car dealership with a large inventory, located in several states across the country.

When you visit the site, you enter the make, model, price range and other details for the type of car you want. You are asked to enter your zip code, and then given a list of available vehicles at locations near your zip code. You can compare models, pricing, features, mileage, and other details.

If you aren’t sure what type of car you want, this is a good option to check out as many cars as possible in your price range.

The Local Dealership’s Website

The local dealership is probably the best option if customer service, in addition to selection, is important to you. The difference is similar to shopping at a large retailer versus the small specialty shop owned by a local family known for their contributions in the community. But whereas that small specialty shop may not have an inventory comparable to the big guys, the local dealership may not only offer a comparable selection of cars, but services that you won’t find at the larger auto retailers.

Conklin Cars is a new and used car dealer with several locations in Kansas. When working with a dealership that has several locations, you have the advantage of a large inventory, and working with specialists at each location. Customers who have visited the Salina car dealer site, for example, can also visit the company’s Newton car dealership and Hutchinson auto dealer sites online or in person to compare models, features and pricing.

But in addition to searching for cars based on brand, make, model, new, used, and even “building” the car you want, customers can also send questions to the dealerships’ parts and service technicians. Rather than running all over town to try and find the right part your car needs, or taking the car to a mechanic that may not be familiar with your car, you’ve got both covered at one location. This works well because it gives you a one-stop-shop option for not only purchasing your car, but care and maintenance after purchase.

Other notable advantages of using a local dealership include better, low-pressure sales and customer service, in addition to unique services. At Conklin Cars, sales reps are trained to create relationships with customers for any of their car buying or car service needs. For example, customers can rent a vehicle from Conklin Cars, a unique feature of this local dealership not found at many auto retailers.

Brand Name Shopping

If you have a particular brand in mind, visiting the company’s main site is probably your best option. A manufacturer’s website will offer a comprehensive look at all of the company’s offerings. Saturn, for example, is known for its low-pressure, no-haggle pricing. Like most automotive brands, the site is quite comprehensive with a photo gallery of different models, pricing, features and other valuable information to help you make an educated decision on which one of their vehicles will best suit your lifestyle.

Modern technology has created an opportunity for the car buyer to save much time, effort and stress when shopping. Depending on whether you want a vast inventory, a local resource capable of providing all of your car service needs, or you’re focused on one particular brand, beginning the car buying process online is a smart move. If you know your budget and enter the dealership with a clear decision on which cars you want to see, you’ve got the hardest part of the car-buying process covered, and all that will be left to do is make a decision and go through the paperwork.

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Buy Used Cars at Cheap Prices

Second hand cars can be purchased by going to the local dealer, looking at the classified ads or checking out the various websites that allow a person to search and buy a car online.

There are two reasons why buying car that are second hand are cheaper. The first is that cars once purchased and driven off a lot immediately depreciate. Annually, these cars lose about 20% in value making it easy for you to buy a second hand car almost at half the original price.

Another reason is that it is hard buying car and pay the full payment up front. By acquiring the services of a financial institution such as a bank, a person can pay off the loan through monthly installments. Unfortunately, some people have failed to honor that commitment which leaves the financial institutions no choice but to have the car repossessed.

For the bank to avoid storing the many cars that have been repossessed and make up for the lost money, these cars are auctioned off immediately which make it easy for some lucky people to buy fairly new cars and prevent being taken advantage of by car dealers.

Before buying car, it is best to think about the kind of car you are willing to spend for and the options that come with it. By doing some research and checking out various dealers, you will be able to pick the right car and get the best deal.

You should also check the history of the used car. This can be checked by going online and typing in the vehicle identification number or VIN. This can help verify the accidents the car has been in, if the car was reported stolen and the previous owner of the vehicle. It can also check if the mileage was rolled back.

Most cars have a maintenance record. The buyer must ask the dealer to see it and if it is not available, then you should contact the dealership or repair shop where most of the work was done.

Here at Used Cars in Melbourne the car should also be test driven on the road at various conditions and checked by a trusted and reputable mechanic just to be safe that the car you will buy is road worthy.

Most important of all, you should ask about the warranty. If there are some things not covered by it, it is best to get a service contract to be safe.

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