30 Dec 2010

Christmas has Come and gone

So here it is, christmas has past by for another year, and as such I have dug out my laptop, and begun using my various forgotten internet mediums, proper normal service will return on the 10th of January when I get back to University. (thinking about it I haven't ever mentioned on this blog that I am AT university at all, much less what I am studying, this will be rectified in a new blog some time soon, but until then on with this one)

For those interested I will be starting up my "drawing a day" on my tumblr page (http://www.jamesagw.tumblr.com)  

and I will be back to my usual silliness of posting several pictures a day on dailybooth

ok, with that business out of the way on with the main point of the blog, and a title very much like a primary school presentation to the class, "What I did over the holidays"

This year I was feeling particularly Christmassy as, before I came home, I went out Christmas shopping solo for the first time ever, and was looking forward to see if I had done well in the present buying stakes, and honestly that was the best bit, giving things to other people and them liking it, I feel all grown up and in with proper Christmas spirit. There was the usual stuff, getting a tree, decorating it, opening presents, athiest jokes, christmas dinner, cold meat and chips, slightly awkward phone conversations with relatives to old or young to operated a phone correctly, you know the ordinary stuff.

This year as an added thing, my good friend and lead singer of Ricky and the pigeons Jamie "Tango Spencer" Duffield, came to stay with us over the festive period, as his family has gone to Florida, this has been good too, usually if a mate stays over for more than a few days they become unbelievably irritating eventually, but Duffield has fitted right in as a faux Wade, and shared in our festivities (until he was whisked away by his extended family / salvation army)

I also got to spend some of Christmas day with Karys, which was ace, we had a mini Christmas sat by the fire, where we opened the gifties we had gotten for each other, (she predictably, got me more gifts than I got her, as she really really likes to give gifts) and then we all (me, Karys, the Family and Duffield) sat down and watched Back to the Future.

so all in all a very nice Christmas over for another year. looking forward to an entertaining new years eve party at the bowers, and a good new year all round, but more about my plans for the year later this is becoming quite a long blog, and there aren't any pretty pictures to distract from the stream of consciousness.

so I will leave it here, I hope everyone else had a lovely Christmas, and has an awesome new year.
look out for my upcoming blogs, 
- my presents this year
- my new years aims and resolutions 
- University, which one I'm at and why

until then, byee


11 Dec 2010

Band Photos

Just lately I have been thinking that the band needs some new photos taking as we, only really have the 'one' decent one of us and it was taken quite a while ago, and since then all of our haircuts have changed, and we have a new drummer. Additionally, stairs are almost akin to brick walls in terms of clichĂ©-ness, not that it isnt a good photograph, it just needs updating.

we're so cool

So I have spent the last few hours trawling through pictures of bands on 'the google' to try and get an idea of what I personally would want to produce something similar to and with any luck the rest of the band will look up some pictures of their own so we can have a group forum before we actually take any photos, 

I like this one mostly for the colour, but the layout of the band, combines with the odd angle of the camera makes this quite a strong image (and also it has a cello in it, which is totally badass)

This one Karys liked because of the dogs, I think aside from the creepy frontman looking the wrong way, this is a good layout, I quite like that the band is squeezed into the frame, and that their legs are missing, like they are at a window.

Again the obvious attraction to this image is the bloke in the banana costume, but I think the rooftop setting is good, and having the guys look a bit like they are all doing different thinks, (the guy on the left of the banana for example looks a bit like he has no idea how he got there or has just arrived by matter transporter)

I think in this picture the band is too small, but I like the room and the wide angle lens shot

I don't know if this is a photo or a screen cap from a music video, either way the curvy room is cool, with the shadows moving in all different directions, the band again is too small, and not particularly charismatic looking.

I like the old grain on this photo, and the (dare I say it) lens flare, looks pretty snazzy too, the guy in the hat looks a bit funny, like he is squaring up to the camera man, (or lady) I like the golden yellow setting sun type images, dunno if RATP is really a golden yellow setting sun kinda band though

It's RON WEASLEY! no it isn't Ron is a fictional character played by Rupert Grint, and this isnt HIM either, its some other ginger bloke and his band, not entirely sure about the bright blue caravan sidling in behind who I have decided is the bass player, but the composition is good, I've noticed most bands are shot from a low angle, which Karys previously told me was a no-no, but perhaps that's just for single person portraits, I suppose it make sense for bands as most people will see them from a low angle when they are on stage and what not.

Again I like this image as it looks like the band are looking through a window at the view (albeit with blindfolded eyes) the look is like they are about to be executed, it looks god but I'm not sure there are too many elements we could lift from it for out own needs.

I think this is a cool picture and probably one that ultimately we could pull off, I think "sunglasses to look cool" has been done now, and would probably opt for not having anyone wear them for a picture, I also think the guy in the green coat looks a bit like he has wandered into the photo by accident. So that's "walking-as-though-looking-for-a-venue-where-we-are-supposed-to-be-playing" noted as a style of photograph for me.

One of these guys (I know they are "The Kooks" but what am I supposed to say, "one of these Kooks" no. I refuse, they are guys, and guys is what I shall call them) appears to have his leg in the water, I don't know if this kind of photo would work for us, are we pretty enough for a gritty true tone photograph, also I dont know if were are really woodland music, although neither are "The Kooks" I suppose.

I like the idea behind this photo, and its layout, however the framing looks slightly awkward, (the amp that the bass player is stood on is mostly out of shot, and the perspective makes it a bit weird) and also it looks FAR too much like it was shot in someone's garden. 

Apart from the bloke who appears to be texting someone I like this photo, I think It would be better if they were all climbing, and looking around as though they had just been caught in a spotlight, aside from this the lighting is good, and the black background that could go on forever is awesome.

Band photo plus Peter Jones! That's right it's world famous mega band Hamfatter! ... anyone? HAMFATTER! anyway I got this photo of them from the daily mail website next to the story, "Band gets record deal on Dragons Den"  (most media coverage they have had) enough about the colossal flop of a band that Hamfatter is. I like this image purely for the brilliantness of Peter Jones' shoes, the soles of them huge up at the front of the image, more important than the awkward pose of Jones himself, the odd setting of a country house or the yellow lilo object he is resting the feet on, if only we had a glass floor available to us, a shoe based shot where we didn't have to sit uncomfortably would be cool.

I like this one for the golden sun-ness again and for the fact that no one is looking at the camera, its almost like they "really were" wandering around on a private beach when someone ran up set up a tripod and expensive camera and snapped a shot of them. still I do like it.

This is the favourite of Karys to whom I showed all these pictures first, the setting and the lighting are very good in this picture, combined with the sub central focus of the sandwich, all in all good, don't like the look of the front guy very much though, his head is odd and it scares me.

And finally this one, I like the reflective table, leather seat, black and white background photos, and all over greeny browny tone, I also like the position of the band members, and how this makes you notice the 1st guy 1st, the 2nd guy 2nd and so on.

So these are my picks of what to base our photographs on, any comments (from RATP band members or Members of the random blogging community) would be much appreciated. 
In Addition to these Images I had a few Ideas for pictures of my own and I shall bullet point them, as I am lazy and don't have any images to go with them.

  • In a car
  • Lit by car headlights
  • In an arcade (playing air kockey, suggested by Karys)
  • In london, bricklane/shoreditch (suggested by Karys) 
  • In an old pub
  • on a heavily patterned antique rug
  • on a sofa in a field (or somewhere it shouldn't be)
I dont really have an appropriate sign off statement, but thank you for reading


9 Dec 2010

Alans Blog

Its ramble-y and for the most part unreadable, it's most likely fuelled by beer, wine and lack of sleep.

its Alan Dermot Octavius O'Brien's Blog, I don't read it very often but you might like it. 

go there


8 Dec 2010


These are some drawings that I have been Doing lately, (I appologize to people who follow my tumblr or Dailybooth who will have already seen these) I am trying to do a Page of drawings or doodles a day, I have decided that from this point, until I get bored with the idea, I will post the images as I draw them on tumblr and dailybooth and then do an "end of week review" here on Blogger with 7(hopefully) images. As I have a Deviant art and a Flickr, I'll probably stick 'em up there too, (this isn't very useful information for you, I'm just blogging my immediate thoughts.... crisps)

I accidentally drew this instead of doing the 12 things blog earlier

This is part of a design to draw on Karys as a pretend tattoo

This was the first drawing I did, based on the heart Karys Drew on my chest last weekend,
look on her blog to see it Http://www.whoisgrumblebeard.blogspot.com

12 Quirky things I own

As per Karys' and Duffield's examples I have decided to do a blog about 12 slightly "off kilter" things that I own

1)Top Hat
Very Dashing
I bought this just under 3 years ago, a short while after Karys and I met, it is one of my favourite possessions, I think it is over 100 years old, and recently I wrote an essay about it (hopefully a good grade will follow)

2)Grammarcy Hall School  Blazer

Chris Guy, the woman from the Y.E.S centre where I often Volunteer accidentally 'stole' this for me from the school it belonged to assuming it was mine anyway, it has the name "Edward Gillin"stitched into the collar and the inside breast, the best thing about this blazer (aside from the red piping and awesome logo) is it isn't like the Grammarcy Hall blazers that the kids were wearing right before it shut down, so I think it might be something of an antique, or possibly the guise of a prefect or head boy, pretty cool either way, and it looks good!

3) pixel watch

This was an engagement gift from Karys, as I'm not much of a "ring wearer" its smaller than I thought it would be, but its very cool and is *kinda* engraved with mine and Karys' initials (its in dymo tape)

4) Glasses with no purpose
Maad emo pose I apologize, I was trying to avoid glare from my screen 
My Brothers Tom (Big G) and Billy, got me these for Christmas last year, because I like wearing glasses, but don't actually need to, its all very hipster, but I like the way my face looks when I wear glasses.

5) hip flask

Thats Right its a hip flask, so called, because its hip, that is all

6) Zippo

All True Badasses carry zippos and it's fun for me to pretend that I am that badass, but oneday a small fire will be required  and I will be the coolest looking person to offer assistance

7) Yellow Gameboy 

This is technically Karys' (but she lent it to me on a fairly permanent basis) which reduces its quirk slightly, but it is BRIGHT FREAKING YELLOW! I didn't even know they came in yellow until I saw this one, so yeah pretty quirky, I actually use it too, for tetris, mario (number 1) and pokemans from time to time haha

8) Lobster Bisque

It's a good luck thing, to be kept in a cupboard and never actually eaten, (unless extreme circumstances happen, like extreme famine) not shown in this picture is the fact is has a ring pull, so it can be opened and eaten even if no basic tools are available (i.e. during the Extreme Emergencies that would force me to eat it)

9) Jeremy

this is Jeremy, he is made from clay by my friend Reece who I don't often see anymore, this remains a pretty much constant gonk on my desk(s) and his ever smiling face lets me know everything is ok (he also kinda looks like a butt plug)

10) business cards + holder

I have a selection of business cards for various occasions, and a rather snazzy case to carry them around in, making me look super business-y all I need now is some of those blue shirts with white cuffs and some shiny cuff links.

11)compass set

Found this in the basement right before I went away to Uni, its a full set of precision compasses for drawing curves and shiz, assumedly for use by architects. its all packed away in a brown plastic leathery case with a cool deadly zip, looks very 70's and conjures images in the mind of dusty workshops and magnifier glasses, and the smell of very very sharp pencils (or perhaps that's just me) 

12) Red briefcase

Karys' bought this for me as a random "here you go" style gift, she found it in a charity shop, its red leather, with gold-y bits on it and when I carry it I like to imagine it is choc-full of secret government type documents, but luckily I don't leave it on the train by accident.

So there you go 12 Quirky things I own I hope that was Eye opening for everyone 


7 Dec 2010

My Current Favicon

This is my current Favicon thing I think Im just going to develop this idea

This is a selection of other favicons to give you an, idea I think mine would slot in nicely here amongst these

New Project

Today in class we got our new brief, which is to be handed in in the new year. 

Here is the Gist of the brief, cobbled together from the "pre-tea" notes I took in the Class

  • We have to create a "Favicon"
    • A "Favicon" is a a 16x16 pixel square logo that appears in the address bar of a website
  • It has to represent "ME" and the kind of work I want to do
  • Its going to be used on my website/professional blog (Jamesagw.wordpress.com go over there for a little gander) 
  • I have to make 3 versions of the same idea, 
    • a standard digital 16x16 version
    • a version made from 1inch square pieces of paper
    • a version made out of "objects" (yup that open ended) I'm thinking I might go for balloons, 
So not a lot really, we are being Judged by people from a design duo called "Jiggery Pokery" who I have actually heard off before.
we have also been told to look at the work of Ian Wright (not the footballer) www.mrianwright.co.uk  which is pretty cool, and although he hasn't done anything with balloons, (to my knowledge) But is kinda where  I got the idea for the balloon thing

I can't really get my head around the Idea of making a little Icon without creating a full graphic Identity, So I Imagine I will go the full 9 yards and design a full thing for my blog, and just show my tutors the favicon!

My tutor Mark said 2 interesting things during the briefing. 
  1. He called the Internet the "Digidom" (Digital Kingdom) which I quite liked
  2. He called our blogs our "shop front" which got me thinking about making my blog more like a digital shop (not cheesy, or like an e-commerce site, just a bit like a shop front) 
as a set up to the brief we had to do a mini project, where we coloured in numbered squares and put them together at the end to make a picture.

yay Jesus
That's right a pixelated Jesus made from bits of paper and pens!

Don't forget to check out my Tumblr for random musings, and my "Doodles of the Day" and my Twitter for my verbal musings in less than 140 characters


6 Dec 2010

Odd Habits


so, over the weekend I was watching "freak like me" with Karys 
its that programme with Russell Kane that looks at people's odd habits, in kind of a jokey fun way, and obviously as an entertainment show it takes it to extremes and only shows the people who only just fit in normal society and have some pretty crazy OCD style habits.

and this got me thinking.

I have a couple of habits, just little ones, but I haven't ever really documented them or thought about what I do and why, so this being the internet, home of free expression here is a list, in no particular order of my habits.

1) I bite my nails, a lot. Basically any time I'm not doing anything in particular I will bite my nails, I don't even know why I do it, it stresses out Karys, because she thinks I'm upset or worried, but it is just habit, the prime time for me to bite my nails is
    a) During Lectures/Talks/Briefs at Uni (basically if I'm sitting around watching someone talk, my fingers are being bitten)
    b) Watching TV
    c) Reading a book
If I run out of nails, (which lets face it happens fairly often) I just bite my fingers instead... yeey, I usually end up with very sore fingers after a while and this affects my guitar playing (which is never good) if they hurt too much and I cant play guitar at all, then I pour super-glue over them to seal them up and build a layer between my fingers and the strings and viola no more hurting!

2) In the morning I get out of bed and go to the toilet (note this isn't the habit, everyone does this I'm building up to it, remain calm) after I have done my business I leave the bathroom but on my way out I click the lights on and then off again, (that bit is the habit, the OCD light switch flick) I don't know why I do this, I think it used to be that I flicked the light on in the 1st place because it is light in the bathroom (being that it is morning) and I think it must be the light so I try to turn it off, so when it gets lighter I realise and turn the light off again. But now I dont wait for it to get lighter I just flick it twice in quick succession (sometimes throwing a glance at the light itself to gain insight to its lit/unlit status) if I am particularly awake I can stop myself doing this, but 9 times out of 10 I will do it.... odd right

3) I only ever get a drink 1/2 way through a  meal. (this one drives Karys mad!) when I eat a meal, rather than getting a drink at the beginning (as would be sensible) I wait until midway though the meal and have to get up and get one. This irritates Karys as she always offers me a drink before a meal, and until recently I always declined, and then later went to get myself one. She now tells me to "think about it" when she offers me a drink and so when I'm with her I get one and avoid the mid meal, interruption.

4) dailybooth, now this may not seem like a habit but it has become a bit of one for me, and is becoming one of the sites I use more often than any other. The idea of dailybooth is to take a photo a day as a document of how you look and what you are up to that day, you can leave a little caption and people can comment, lovely. At the moment however when I am at home I use it more like twitter, to take a picture of what I am doing that MOMENT and see what people think, I usually take 3 to 8 pictures a day depending on what I'm doing, I just like it. It annoys some of my other friends as it does update to my twitter as well meaning there is no escape from my mindless picture taking. Again I dont know why I dailybooth so much, I just like it, it's kind of instant and the commenting system means you can talk to a randomer about something (without (as many) trolls as might be found on other "talk to randomer" websites) I also quite like getting comments on the things that I am doing (low self esteem?) 

I think that is it for now, 4 a nice weird list length, not a simple 3 but not a top 5 either

Watch "Freak like me" (http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/b00vls5z) for more extreme habits etc
and if you are interested in perusing my twitter or Dailybooth accounts that I mentioned in the blog the URL's are as follows

Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/Jamesagw_ratp
Dailybooth: http://www.dailybooth.com/jamesagw


short blog

I'm supposed to be doing some drawing for my design class tomorrow, (and I am!) but in the mean time here is a little blog about something of no particular interest to anyone!

As anyone who reads my fiancĂ©e Karys' Blog (pretty much all my followers and then some!) will know I went over to her house for the weekend (which was lovely) 

we had a nice time being silly and lazying around. we also did something I don't normally do if left to my own devices (Minds out of the gutter now children) we had breakfast! Yup that exciting! On top of this we had cooked breakfast and I had eggs!

This is a Fried egg (I strongly suggest you Google eggs it is most entertaining)

I don't actually remeber the last time before this weekend that I actually ate an egg, suffice it to say it was a long long time ago. I enjoyed eating my eggs and having breakfast in general, but when I got back to my flat I thought "well the magic ends here no more breakfast, no more eggs" only to open my fridge and find EGGS, that are mine left over from the massive toad in the hole me and Karys had made a few weeks earlier!

This actually made me inordinately happy and I am looking forward to my breakfast of egg and potato waffle tomorrow morning (knowing my luck I will probably get up late and skip breakfast as usual though)

there you go a short blog about something that happened to me recently (with eggs) 

remember: google images - "eggs" its worth a look just to see the odd things that come up