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Sunday, April 21, 2024

Sepia Colors

Beyond primary, secondary, and tertiary colors, as seen on The Color Wheel, another selection of colors that stands out is the group of brown and brownish colors. They can fall into the category of sepia colors.

Sepia colors are characterized by earthy and sandy tones, whether dark or bright, tending toward yellow or red hues, not too saturated. They usually resemble what is old, as their shades invoke memories of antiques and worn-out items. But most of all, they can be considered "grounding".

With the wide range of sepia colors that can be chosen for a piece, there is plenty that can be successfully done with them. Besides replicating the past and all the sense of sentimentality that comes with it, it can also facilitate a sense of what is solid, which may be accompanied by a sense of safety, which can also bring a sense of comfort - and even coziness.

Not everyone is a fan of a brown palette, as there are both pleasant and unpleasant associations to it and some would fixate on the latter. Mud, dirt, and more that can be gross. Plus reasons other than that. Yet, that again circles back to how humbling it is, putting you in touch with the realities of practicality and what is in practice. 

Regardless, you can also just focus on the appreciation of the small pleasures in life, such as coffee and chocolate. Cherished photographs and handwritten letters that have been kept for decades. Tree houses and wooden wands or staves in the backyard. 

They are colors rich in attributes that can be applied in several settings.

CREDIT: AI-Generated Examples done on Leonardo.AI

Room to Roam

Structure and even pressure can and are conducive to growth and accomplishment. However, it may also get to a point where it causes stagnation and decline instead. And that can be quite terrible for an artistic spirit.

If you are artistic, particularly introspective and imaginative, you need space and freedom - more so than others may deem it. Not necessarily boundless, but enough to flow and be at ease. Mental, emotional, physical... in all the planes that you're called in.

This is often one of the most arduous challenges for an artist, to be able to claim and exercise their right to have room to roam. Usually, we're born into and/or stumble upon people and situations that place demands on us and they may turn into or seem to be duties that we're obligated to fulfill. Making us "selfish" and "cruel" if we don't. Whether that is really the case or not isn't so simple.

Finding out who you are exactly and what you precisely require isn't a task that can be done overnight. It can take years. Decades. Of much trial and error or being completely done with what over and over proves not to be for you (anymore or at any point). So it is not surprising that many eventually change course and drastically alter their lives. Or what is worse, lose it.

This is a matter to take seriously. Because while, yes, you must be a responsible person and tend to more than just your own needs and wants, you don't get to do a lot of that if you are severely neglecting yourself. And this is something you must examine and be honest with yourself about.

In my case, the two times my health has been the worst in the sense of leading to crippling depression and suicidal tendencies were when I felt trapped. I could see no end to my suffering. No path I could take that'd give me an exit. And I couldn't bear it. My attempts to progress out of it were actively deterred or even blocked. The time I could put into it, occupied. The energy, zapped. No amount of coping by any means would let me endure for much longer. Then, even if I wasn't taking direct action against myself, I was indifferent about what would happen to me. It is only because I was fortunate to know people who could and would help that I can still be here. Moving closer and closer to what is ideal for me and steering clear of anything that'd again drive me to that state.

Not everyone will get it and that is okay. Only a few may approve. Even fewer would support it. But you must take yourself into consideration even when what you need and want isn't what others believe you do or should - especially if the alternative is looking grim or even potentially lethal. Yet, it doesn't have to be absolutely horrible for you to recognize that your circumstances are detrimental and taking a toll on you. The process out of them is likely to be conflictive and chaotic, but it is something to go through to get to the other side. And once there, you can reassess and reconnect with the parts of it that you can realistically and reasonably handle. If it goes more smoothly than that, then you can gradually take note of what is and isn't manageable for you. But whatever you do, don't let yourself die (figuratively and literally speaking).

All of this is easier said than done. And it can take a while merely to start, let alone be done with it. If you have people close to you that are on your side about improving your situation, that is great. But you can also look into more resources that suit you and your specific concerns to be even less lost and alone in it. 

Eventually, by doing more self-work, you get to where you can accurately pinpoint your limits and set boundaries accordingly so that you neither overextend nor suppress yourself.

Saturday, April 20, 2024

Tropical Spring Day Walk

Turns out I really enjoy watching walking videos. Or at least have them playing on the side while I work or do other things. So I'm making my own!

Going with the seasons and visiting some of my favorite places where I live, this is the start of a series. It is a part of my Wellness category and its Therapy subcategory since, for real, a change of scenery helps (more so if you can actually go for a walk yourself, which I encourage).


Along with these videos, I'm adding a handful of shorts with short messages as reminders to go with them. Extracting clips I liked from the same footage.

“Endings can be hurtful and painful,
when and after they happen.
But beginnings can be promising,
and bring more than you’d imagine…"

“Give yourself the time you need.
To break out, to let go, to grow and evolve,
and to be restored…”

“Worry not about what you’re not
and cannot be.
Tend to yourself instead
and be revealed…”

I enjoyed making these, so I'm happy to continue the series in between other content! 

Taurus' Description

Taurus, as the second sign of the Zodiac, stands as an earth and fixed sign, embodying stability and steadfastness. This sign exudes a grounded and practical nature, rooted deeply in its connection to the material and physical world. Often associated with qualities like determination and resilience, possessing a resolute will that is unwavering once set in motion. It may sometimes manifest as stubbornness, but beneath lies a profound commitment to its path. In the realm of comfort and security, Taurus excels, cherishing the finer things in celebration of the tangible.

Spiritually, Taurus represents a stage of growth where the soul learns the value of patience and perseverance. It teaches the lesson of slow and steady progress, reminding us that fulfillment comes from the consistent nurturing of our aspirations.

For context and more of relevance, please read about The Zodiac.

Wednesday, April 17, 2024

Justin Timberlake & NSYNC's Paradise

I've been wanting to write about this song, to bring and keep it here, forever to be cherished, since I first heard it. And it's been a while now, but I finally can. It came out during a heavy moment for me, and even so, I could love it so much...

Justin Timberlake has been the bringer of pleasant surprises for NSYNC fans since last year. And don't get me wrong, I appreciate Justin and his solo works as well (and I can go off about them too). But when you get NSYNC together, it hits on whole other levels. And I'm sooo thankful for it!

I'm not even sure how to describe it exactly, but it does something not only to my brain - but to my spirit, too. NSYNC was the band I hyperfixated on when I was young and yet to become cynical. You wouldn't believe the degree to which I loved this band and everything they did. And it was in such an innocent way, too. They hooked me with a music video of a psych ward, then with their glowing personalities, their impressive performances, and left me with lifelong favorite music and the memory of a fulfilling childhood that was complete with most-listened-to CDs. I knew nothing about the world back then. I didn't even know English and my obsession with them sped up my learning of it (thank you again for that!).

Unfortunately, I moved a lot since then. And quite often, in a rush and leaving possessions behind. So I no longer have any of the NSYNC merchandise I collected. I wish I still did to have proof of my level of craziness, but you'll have to believe me on this one. And maybe that's for the best. Pfft. But in other words, yup, definitely a true fan.

And it's so weird for me now because I disconnected from all of that until recently, when I suddenly saw them together again at the awards. I don't even know how to have this conversation with my child self. Like, how do I even begin to explain to her everything that has happened in between and up to this point, where she gets to live again? She'd be in utter disbelief. Everything from how life went to how much has changed all around. The unbelievable situations we'd find ourselves in. And how nice it all can be after and despite it all.

I don't know for how long NSYNC will continue to show up as a band, but it has already been magical. They indeed took us to a better place.

And this song, Paradise, is so absolutely perfect in so many ways. The melody and the lyrics come across as genuinely inspired and sincerely made with love. And as if that wasn't enough already, the vocals and the harmonizing between them are astoundingly flawless and outstanding. You'd believe angels are singing. I can't imagine a better gift, better wrapped, for those of us who are happy to see them and have them around once more. They really went in on this one and over-delivered.

The far-sighted and holistic view employed through it can make trivial and petty troubles look as small and insignificant as they are, lifting us to a plane where meaning is what is important and it prevails. I don't know about you, but for me, it is a remarkable example of art working wonders. And this one does it by connecting largely distanced points across time and space in a manner that transcends the mundane and arrives at what's considered paradise. It is soothing, relieving, and gently engulfing in the softest and fluffiest clouds. Talk about transmitting vibes and setting moods.

Needless to say, it got a special place in my heart. 

Tuesday, April 16, 2024

Long Rides

Riding with me is having no guarantee we'll get there fast, possibly getting a little lost, taking the scenic route, stopping to help innocent animals we see on the way, getting angry at inconsiderate drivers and cursing at them, questioning the layouts of everything, a couple of meltdowns here and there, drink and snack breaks at different locations, happy to pass the wheel to whoever can drive well and wants to (taking it back if they're a danger or must/prefer to rest), but definitely with great music through it all!

Sunday, April 14, 2024

Complementary Colors

More that can be seen on The Color Wheel are the colors that sit across from each other as complementary colors. 

When a color is facing another from the other side of the wheel, it is considered a complementary color to it. Complementary colors are those that differ precisely enough from the other, left and right, to possess what they lack and be then their complement. E.g. Yellow is a complement to purple and vice-versa.

Complementary colors bring balance to a composition. Though they may be tricky to combine in just the right amounts, and in just the right spots, for them to add to and bring out the best in each other rather than fight for attention. This is a sort of partnership that stands out as peculiar yet enhancing. As with Contrast in Colors, complementary colors can be eye-catching when together despite and because of their differences.

It's not unusual for artists to work with complementary colors - and be known for it. This is yet another of the clever ways to work with color that yield impressive and memorable results.

Again, as with Adjacent Colors, depending on your preferences, the impression and impact you aim to make, and the meanings you aspire to convey, you could decide on a set of complementary colors as your go-to palette. Or switch them up as you go.

CREDIT: AI-Generated Examples done on Leonardo.AI

Sunday, April 7, 2024

Adjacent Colors

Continuing with The Color Wheel, let's take a further look into adjacent colors - what we are referring to by that and what that means.

 Adjacent colors are two or more colors sitting next to each other on the wheel. These are colors with similarities and overlaps as they are more the same the closer they are. Their differences become more significant and notable the further apart they are. E.g. Orange slightly inching toward yellow gains a yellowish tint and orange further approaching yellow may become more yellow than it is orange.

When coloring, if you're afraid to take risks or make leaps, you could try sticking with a selection of adjacent colors so there won't be much conflict or noise between them. And while that's playing it safe, it won't necessarily be boring. Besides, it may be what is more suited for a given project or mission. Temperature in Colors, for example, is composed of adjacent colors.

Many artists make adjacent colors their trademark. They may stick with colors such as purple and those adjacent to it for all that they create. Or at least make them predominant in what they do. 

Depending on your preferences, the impression and impact you aim to make, and the meanings you aspire to convey, you could decide on a set of adjacent colors, whether closely tied together or wider apart, as your go-to palette. Or switch them up as you go.

CREDIT: AI-Generated Examples done on Leonardo.AI

The Color Wheel

Here is the color wheel. There are several ways in which you can group and organize colors, but this wheel is one of the most encompassing and cohesive kind. Not limited by the few colors shown above, but able to contain countless shades of them in between and in and out of them. For the sake of simplicity, though, let's just look at a few colors.

Within what we can call chromatic colors, you will find what are called primary colors and secondary colors (tertiary colors, too). The primary colors are red, blue, and yellow. While secondary colors are green, orange, and purple. The names aren't about rank, but about blending. You can get secondary colors by blending primary colors, but not vice-versa. E.g. Red and yellow, primary colors, make orange, a secondary color. And you can see how they appear between them on the wheel.

Furthermore, on this wheel, you are able to see which colors are adjacent to one another and which ones are complementary to each other. E.g. Adjacent to blue is turquoise and indigo, and complementing blue is orange.

Being familiar with the color wheel comes in handy for understanding, choosing, combining, and also blending colors.  

Saturday, April 6, 2024

AI Art for Storytelling?


Experimenting with AI tools for art, I keep giving into more uses for AI Art. It doesn't take away my desire to make art myself. If anything, it makes me wish I had more time to do so. Because the process of creating is enjoyable too, not just the end result - and I get to be hyper-specific with it. But I'd be lying if I said I'm not having fun with AI Art.

I prompted these images to aid storytelling and it's one of my favorite uses so far. It took me quite a few tries before getting the pictures that most resembled what I was aiming for, but still much better than not having any! I'm looking forward to doing something like this again in the not-so-distant future. Whether it is a continuation to the story these are for or any other story.

The application is called Leonardo.AI. It is web-based and sufficiently free. It currently contains many features and options. These images were generated using the Leonardo Lightning XL model with the Colorpop element (at 1.00 weight), including keywords such as: detailed, black, dark blue, cyberpunk, underground, city...

The tools are rapidly evolving so the complaints I have about them now may no longer have place soon and that's exciting. Go play with them if you aren't already!

CREDIT: AI-Generated Reference done on Leonardo.AI

Life has been... Something

Looking back, I figure that there are a few things that I haven't made as clear as they could be. And I want and need them to be as I go forward with everything:

- As much as I adore art and the artists behind it, you can rest assured that they aren't "brainwashing" me. I have always been insanely reflective and looking for what makes sense and resonates with me. At most, I may consider an idea, deem it plausible, test it out, and then decide whether or not it is something I should adopt or take as only an experience. So, worry not, I am my own person and make my own decisions.

- Continuing about adoration, I have and respect limits. I would never harass anyone with affection or flattery no matter how impressive I believe they are. In fact, the moment it seems likely that any of that isn't welcome or is in some way burdensome, I'll keep it to myself. May even vanish completely, depending.

- Furthermore, regardless of how much I adore someone, it isn't necessarily in a romantic manner. I can love for many different reasons and in many different ways to great degrees. And it seems to me that the greatest amount of love I can have for someone emanates from gratitude. So yes, I can love someone a lot because they helped me through something somehow.

- And speaking of being grateful, that often steers me in certain directions. Honoring help, keeping promises, but also realizing when I might be able to give back, regardless of how much time has passed, and turning back for it. Even if I don't know what will happen. If there's anything I can really do or that they would accept. But I at least could check. Would be terrible if I didn't and forever lost my chance.

- I don't like being pitied, so I reserve pity for those I dislike. If I like you, it's as if I bypass that emotion and go straight to simply knowing that you deserve good things and wanting you to have good things. Might be furious if that doesn't happen, too. And if I can facilitate that, then awesome. If not, hopefully, someone else will. The point is for you to be well.

My life has been a series of mixed events, one leading to another, that got me to places I would not have imagined I'd ever be. But once there, there were things I felt like I must do. And the more I didn't do them, the worse I felt. It's as if everything happened for a reason, and it was pushing me to continue to go along with it, but that's kind of crazy to believe (realistically, there's probably more than one reason). And yet, crazy things keep happening. So, what is sensible to believe?

All I know for sure is that life can be confusing, frightening, and horrible. And that can be unbearable if you're alone. I'd rather kindred spirits aren't.

Hello, Newcomer!

One month into what I’d call a new cycle, I’d like to make a quick recap of what you’ve missed if you’re a newcomer along with a few points on what you should know.

This is still in the early stages and I’ll probably keep saying that for a while! I have long-term plans for what I’m doing so, next to what I’ve visualized and am aiming for, this is still messy preparation. It’s like arriving at a party while it’s still being set up. Can’t expect optimal hosting yet, but you’re extra appreciated for helping out or simply being patient.

I may seem strangely unbothered by my lack of audience (we are still just a few), but I’m not really in a rush for a wide one (I’m not an example to follow if you are). I started this with the intention of eventually reaching “mini-me’s” who are struggling with what I’ve struggled (people similar to me and on a similar path but who are a little behind in aspects of it). However, it seems that I’m currently in a period of honoring my ancestors and heeding their guidance instead. Yet, I have so much faith in all of it because I’m certain that, if you’re art-obsessed like me, sooner or later, one way or another, we’ll be in a carefully crafted universe that is worth every second.

Then again, I still exhort you to have other sources of content for your needs and wants as I cannot cover them all now or ever. I’ll keep occasionally curating those I can deem trustworthy or at least worthwhile, but you should still go after what you require to keep going forward. Also, limit or moderate your consumption of my content if and when it is counterproductive to you and where you are (get back to more of it when that’s no longer the case).

There are times when I would like for things to move along faster, but maybe this is running on divine timing and rushing it would defeat the purpose. What do I know as a mere mortal? Admittedly, it’s like I’ve dodged a few bullets already. Sometimes what you believe you want is not what you need. And I’m currently happy to be working toward my goals with various types of support from people I’d gladly be grateful and reciprocal toward.

As usual, if you have any concerns, you can let me know and I’ll see if there’s anything I can do about it that’s still in alignment with my mission.

Be warned, though, I don’t promise eternal and constant pleasantness. I only promise to persistently strive to be and remain authentic. This means that there will be ups and downs, steps back and then forward, and a range of thoughts and feelings. Which, in my opinion, leads to some of the best art and you can take it as an invitation to allow yourself the same. As long as it is not seriously detrimental to you and/or to others, it’ll be fine. I do value some degree of safety and stability, though, so I’ll give notice and take precautions whenever I can.

Furthermore, don’t let my invisibility deceive you. I’ve been online since mIRC days, observing (and often discussing) online behavior across the web. I’m not as naive as I look. Nor are those closest to me.

Lastly, you’re more than welcome to become a regular if your intentions are good. I don’t consider myself too strict, but users and abusers might disagree. Nevertheless, if this place feels right for you, then I’m glad you found me and are around!

Sunday, March 31, 2024

Saturation in Colors

Then what about saturation? Saturation refers to how rich and vibrant a color is in being, well, colorful. The same color can have varying degrees of saturation. For example, red is still red whether it is muted or vivid in terms of saturation. Though, at some point, they may be given a different name.

Muted colors, which are those with low saturation, tend toward gray and can come across as more modest, as if withdrawn or refusing to stand out too much. They may also blend with a somber atmosphere composed of somber moods. Typically, they denote a degree of lifelessness.

Whereas, vivid colors, which are those with high saturation, tend toward the maximum expression of color and come across as more explosive, as if unable to hold themselves back and eager to make an impression. They may also combine with a hyper atmosphere composed of hyper moods. Typically, they denote a degree of liveliness.

Going all the way up in saturation can result in a practically unpleasant-to-look-at mess. However, going all the way down in saturation results in something that many can appreciate: black & white. Usually, black & white visuals take us back in time, given the history of photography, how colors could not be so easily recreated in images, so much was in black and white (and the grays between them). But it may also bring that touch of elegance often attributed to classics. Furthermore, it could be purposefully neutralizing so that the characteristics of colors with saturation become irrelevant and the focus can go to other aspects of what is visible. You may argue that it makes it more soulful too.

CREDIT: AI-Generated Examples done on Leonardo.AI

Sunday, March 24, 2024

Called to Power

Something that used to weigh heavily on me and is again hitting me is the unfortunate reality that power attracts different kinds of people. And quite often, it is the least honorable kind. People who are mostly driven by their ego, with little to no regard for others. Just out for themselves, their greed, their vanity, and their pride. Possibly their stifling and overcontroling ways, too. And this isn't new, it's part of life and what people are like. But it can be discouraging to think about or be acutely aware of if you care about the world or just would rather not live in a horrible one. And it is especially ironic that many of the healthiest people are not as compelled to gain power to the same degree. So that pretty much leaves us with a bunch of sick people with a lot of power.

That's why I exhort you, that if you have a good heart and your head is in the right place, do not sleep on your power. In whatever form is meant for you. Because then there won't be enough people to stand against those who'd do awful things with it. Seek to have and maintain power. As much as you can drive yourself to without going mad.

You may have been conditioned to believe power-seeking is in itself bad or sinful, but that's an inaccurate conclusion reached through a lack of nuance. It is the power-hungry bastards that have made it look so, but it is not always the case. You may have even heard that it corrupts people, but that's not necessarily so either. It corrupts you if you let it or if you were already corrupt to begin with and it allows you to enact more of that. And even if you don't fully believe all this, it may still be internalized to the extent that it is holding you back. So you must deprogram and reprogram yourself to view it differently, allowing yourself to be more drawn to it.

And for what it's worth, you are not alone. You may have been born or stumbled upon a series of terrible or questionable people. But if you look closely or elsewhere, you will find that there are still many who are genuinely concerned with bettering themselves and bettering the world. And no, not just for show. Injustice and suffering are truly upsetting to them and move them into corrective and constructive action.  

I am crippled in the sense that there is only so much that I can take on before becoming physically ill, but I can assure you that I do as much as I can with what I recognize to be my particular gifts. You could go through periods when you're searching for what yours are, periods when you're developing them, and periods when you're putting them into use. Might have periods when they overlap too. But there's a high chance that there's something significant that you can do, big or small, that helps keep reality from becoming an unbearable nightmare.

Contrast in Colors

You could take notice of contrast as well. Contrast is basically how much difference is there between one thing and another. When it comes to colors, this difference can be in tone, luminosity, and other attributes. And typically, we call it low contrast when there is not much and high contrast when there is.

When a piece of artwork has low contrast, the play of colors within it is more subtle. It may even prompt you to relax and become more sensitive to the moderate and gradual differences that exist in it, to savor and/or appraise them more carefully. They tend to induce serenity as the elements gently flow into and through each other. 

Alternatively, when a piece of artwork has high contrast, the play of colors within it is more striking. It jumps at you, rattles, and shakes you up, and you can hardly miss the differences when they are so impactfully obvious. They tend to provoke tension as the elements brashly impose themselves and take up their space.

Needless to say, there is a sort of charm in either. One may evoke a sort of haziness while the other a sort of alertness. One blends while the other clashes. Both compose reality and can be spotted all over.

CREDIT: AI-Generated Examples done on Leonardo.AI

Saturday, March 23, 2024

My Pinterest Is Active!

I reactivated my Pinterest. Mostly for myself because I like having things visually all in one place, but also for any of my dear readers who might also enjoy looking at boards and pins. 

I decided to tend to only two boards: Vibes and Articles. The Vibes board is basically where I'll pin photos that capture my lifestyle or how life is going for me outside of the digital/virtual world (photos that I take regardless of having any use for them other than to hold on to a moment). And the Articles board is, well, just many of my articles pinned for more accessibility.

I'll try to add to them both at least once a month. So you can check them out now and later on!

Thursday, March 21, 2024

Tapping Into Mysteries

To tap into the mysteries within and all around, it helps tremendously to have developed skills such as questioning, pattern recognition, synthesizing, categorization, and so forth along with metacognition. You must be observant and at least a bit skeptical so that you can properly gather the knowledge that you require to correctly reach conclusions or stick with the facts. Depending on where you are at these, the task could be light or heavy for you. But with practice, it would happen effortlessly - until you run into something else that could deeply confuse you (which happens to even the best).

More than a Mere Coincidence

Some of the most strange and inexplicable events happened to me upon a series of “coincidences” that turned out to be more than just that and opened my eyes to more levels of existence and comprehension, bringing more meaning and significance to everything. I would not have imagined them, let alone planned them myself. But as they were impossible to ignore, I then let them lead me and went with them.

Creatures from Dreams

Something that not many know is that, in the background, there are a few creatures that appeared to me in dreams during difficult moments and eased my suffering and struggle. I consider them good fortune so I gladly have them around.

Wednesday, March 20, 2024

Aries' Description

Aries, as the first sign of the Zodiac, as well as being a fire sign and a cardinal sign, is recognized as the sign with the most impetus to charge forward and take initiative. This is a sign that is often associated with characteristics such as boldness and bravery. Possibly reckless impulsivity. Nonetheless, it is a trailblazer. Where Aries is, there is little to no hesitation - unless its energy is blocked or overruled. But even then, it might be pushing toward action. Daring to go and do what others wouldn't. Its restlessness may lead it into exhilarating activities. Often seen as peculiar individuals who are aggressively original.

Evolutively, from a spiritual standpoint, this is the youngest sign. It is the part of the soul that is new and impatient to venture into experiencing what life has to offer.

For context and more of relevance, please read about The Zodiac.

Sunday, March 17, 2024

Locking into Purpose

If you are the kind of person who is most strongly motivated by having some sort of purpose that goes beyond gaining immediate rewards and avoiding immediate punishments, whatever forms they may take for you, and is most called by something far away that is grander than that, you could become disoriented and shiftless unless you lock into a purpose that you can be aligned with and pushes you forward.

Sometimes we already are without realizing it, but other times we must reflect a bit to spot and hold it. It can be something lifelong, or to last a couple decades or so, maybe just a few years, or something to get you through the remaining months of this one. You could figure out what currently works for you so that you can be on track and fulfillingly so.

When something or someone comes along, promising or faking a future and you're hit with the reality that it won't be happening or that it can't be counted on, it can throw you off and leave you worse than you were prior to it. That's in part because it meddled with your concept of the future and therefore your purpose. You must then return to what was before or reach for more solid ambitions and aspirations.

You have the rest of your life ahead of you. Maybe you already have plenty going on to keep you occupied and just turning your focus back to it would do. But maybe there's room for more that would make your life better and more worth waking up every day for. It can be tangible and intangible aims. Like homemaking and personal growth, or what suits you (I'm still going for my intricate and elaborate alternate universes).

And remember, what success looks like is different for different people. You don't have to trade a life well lived for vainglory in things that ultimately make you or keep you empty and miserable. You can go for what makes you the best version of you.

Luminosity in Colors

Then there comes how dark or bright colors, or a combination of them, are. Light is quite often taken symbolically. But in the physical sense, it is also quite significant. Light can show or hide objects and the details in them. It can hit and reflect off them. It can pass through matter that could amplify, intensify, diminish, block, or colorize it. It can cast shadows, weak or strong. And as it interacts, it may highlight, outline, or distort what is in sight. A play of lights is fascinating to look at in itself.

When it comes to choosing colors and how illuminated a piece of work will be overall, understanding how light works in the physical plane may be required, depending on what you're making or attempting to make. But also, before all that, you could decide whether it will be mostly dark or mostly bright. 

The moods and energies that darkness transmits can drastically differ from those that brightness does. Typically, darkness goes in hand with the unknown, the scary, and being closed off (may feel more intimate, too). While brightness goes with the evident, the amicable, and being open (may feel more casual, too). And when they don't, it comes as unexpected. They can also be compared as different realms. The inner and the outer or the under and the over. Either is worth exploring, yet one is more tempting to stay in for longer - what kind of creature you are will tell.

Interestingly, though, they're both made more intricate by having at least a bit of each other. Because, otherwise, you couldn't exactly perceive what is happening there. It'd be too dark or too bright to make many distinctions. You could opt to achieve a balance or land in a spot leaning more to one than another, all with your particular choice of colors.

You may as well play with the idea that one side can be more intimidating while the other can be more approachable, one vile and the other pure. Or appear or come across as such, whether or not that will ultimately be the case, as looks can be deceiving. And maybe it has more to do with how well something or someone can mesh with them.

CREDIT: AI-Generated Examples done on Leonardo.AI

Saturday, March 16, 2024

Wishing You The Best Because I Love You

One thing you can be sure about me is that I'll always want what's best for those I can call my friends - even when it costs me. I don't always know what that is exactly, but would hate to get in the way of it.

Thursday, March 14, 2024

Don't Worry, Drink Coffee & Have a Good Day

That time I treated myself to a cup of coffee while waiting for a spot to open. This was at the beginning of the year, but wanted to share it now anyway. Before too long.

I'm not really an advocate for caffeine (not in too large amounts, anyway), but cups like this one amuse and uplift me. Hopefully, it'll at least put a small smile on your face.

I don't know how you're doing exactly. But if something is troubling you and is getting bigger than it truly is in your head, take this as a sign that life still goes on. One day at a time, it'll get sorted out. In the meantime, be kind to yourself and continue to enjoy the little things in life - which aren't so little after all. 

It gets better. And if it doesn't, we get smarter, stronger, braver, and even more humorous. Until it does get better.

Tuesday, March 12, 2024

No Character Development?

Character can indeed be developed, it is not only a fictional thing, but you can't quite always count on it happening for real. 

Character, or personal, development only happens if you truly opt in for it to happen and are able to absorb and integrate it within yourself past surface levels - so that there is an internal transformation that transforms your external behaviors rather than merely "transforming" your behaviors. It should get to your core and change your values and your principles for the better, not just your beliefs on what is the proper (or convenient) way to act.

Unfortunately, this is a sort of depth that many cannot be bothered to reach or even have access to. So we are coexisting with people who might never quite be on the same page as you if you are in constant evolution. And it can get lonely. Regardless, it is still worthwhile in order to free yourself of crippling, paralyzing, and self-sabotaging wounds, ills, and misguidances that you could be operating under. 

In my case, it was character development that got rid of my 3-7 nightmares per night. Something I still count as one of the greatest achievements in my life because, boy, was I tormented by it. Along with much more that is allowing me not only to function better than before but also to have a clear conscience and a more fulfilling life. And I still have more to work on to be at my absolute best.

It can be discouraging and lower morale to be surrounded by people who pay little to no attention to this, but this is something that you can do for yourself and your loved ones regardless. Solving or improving on whatever it is that is keeping you from treating yourself and others well...

Monday, March 11, 2024

Releasing Undue Obligations

If you haven't already, and you're stepping away from a role permanently or for a prolonged period, having been responsible, be sure to psychologically untangle yourself from it as well.

Take conscious note of how that job and its tasks are no longer your responsibility.
How you did what you could or what was required of you already.
How compensation for it did or did not do your work justice.
How the outcome of it without you is not in your hands.

And especially if you are the type to be overly concerned about others, remember that you can only help those willing to accept your help and that you are not obligated to help at the sacrifice of yourself. If it's not doing you well and there's not even enough to make up for it, give yourself permission to walk away without remorse.

There is a form of instant karma that happens when continually offering assistance where such assistance is not properly valued and honored as it would be better offered where it is more deserved (or saved).

Sunday, March 10, 2024

Role Models? Maybe, Maybe not.

Some people come and pass through your life to show you what you'd wish to be more like.
Others to show you what you'd wish to be less like.
And others show you both.

Temperature in Colors

Where colors are present, temperature also comes into play. Because of the way they normally appear in nature, certain colors can be more associated with coldness (as cool) than with hotness (as warm) and vice-versa. With some being somewhere in and near the middle. And because of this association, they can evoke a sense of temperature in us. In some cases, for those sensitive enough, they may even “trick” their brains into experiencing these temperatures.

That’s right, if you are cold and you expose yourself to what would be called cool colors, you could feel even colder. And if you’re hot and focus on cool colors, they may take your mind off the hot degrees and make it cooler for you. Likewise when it comes to warm colors.

Furthermore, cold temperatures tend to be tied to a state of relaxation and stillness, while hot temperatures tend to be tied to a state of agitation and rush. Resembling and inducing the differences of passive and receptive versus active and imposing. Could also refer to how closed off or lifeless someone or something is.

An icy blue is the epitome of a cold color, with turquoise and mint following close, while a burning red is the epitome of a hot color, with orange and yellow following close. But that’s just keeping it simple. The colors adjacent to these in the color wheel can fall into their respective categories. Along with more colors and “technically, not really a color” that simply make sense for each category. It's not completely clear-cut.

You could create a piece from scratch and select the colors for it with this concept in mind. Or you can choose an already existing piece and tweak its colors to achieve a more defined temperature with them (though some may not translate as well because of the contradicting values they may already contain).

To be safe in utilizing colors for your artwork in an attempt to transmit temperature with them, don’t only mind the colors you are choosing, but also the objects and other components around that they are applied to. Unless you are going for something surreal with the intent of having clashing elements and manage to gracefully pull it off.

Overall, whether made conscious or not, temperature plays a significant role in how a piece will be perceived and interpreted, along with what kind of effect and level of impact it will have. Whether for metaphorical meaning or for literal sensation. Especially on artistic fellows who are particularly able to pick up on this.

CREDIT: AI-Generated Examples done on Leonardo.AI

Saturday, March 9, 2024

Adjusting to a Diet

This is a friendly reminder that, if you're suddenly and drastically taking on or being put on a diet, the way to adjust to it isn't to sit around fighting and lamenting the habits and cravings you no longer can fulfill. You must find something else to compensate for it - preferably something that will be good for you but also takes your mind off of it enough. Whether that's drinking more water, having healthy snacks more often, exercising more, immersing in more books for either education or entertainment, putting yourself to work on more engaging projects, etc. You won't get over it overnight, but you will.

Find Each Other and Leave Me Alone

I don't like masochists because I'm not a sadist.
I don't like sadists because I'm not a masochist.
I don't like sadomasochists because I'm neither.
May they find each other and leave me alone.

(I love my close friends and chosen family.
Still believe I won the lottery with them.)

Adventures and Misadaventures

Thankful for the real ones. For all the nutritious and delicious food. For the great art.
And for those who've stuck with me despite the wide range of adventures and misadventures I go through.

Sunday, March 3, 2024

Color Meanings

Since color is everywhere, for one or more reasons, it is useful to learn their meanings and what they’re typically associated with as well as what moods they tend to evoke. This gets jumbled up because there are similarities and overlaps between them, and words can fall short, so I’ll try to make clear distinctions between them.

Symbolically, there is power in every shade of color, although it is more often than not acknowledged for only the few with characteristics that we recognize as powerful under circumstances we are commonly forced into. But they all can be at an advantage or at a disadvantage, given the scenario.

White relates to rectitude. It may be attributed to purity, coming from innocence and naivete, but it is not necessarily so. This purity may have more to do with having revised and polished principles and values by which you’re guided that may simultaneously guard you or even give you immunity against corruption. White is often portrayed where there is celestial divinity and clarity so brilliant that it can be momentarily blinding. White evokes a sense of safety and sanity.

Black relates to the unknown (an enigma). Where darkness reigns, there is intrigue and an intensity that can be intimidating. It may be attributed to evil, but that is usually the projection of one’s fears. In the absence of visibility, you could expect the worst. Black is often used to show a void and what has been consumed by horror. Black evokes a sense of preservation - by any means.

Red relates to will. Often attributed to vitality and stamina, and rightly so. Impulsivity and potential recklessness. It is a force to be reckoned with. Almost completely unstoppable. Red comes up where there is an undeniable passion and a fieriness that is hard to extinguish. Red evokes a sense of danger (which may excite or scare).

Orange relates to resources. Having different tools and materials - and making the most of them. Frequently attributed to creative leadership, but I’d call it thinking outside the box and going further because of it. Orange is often where pleasure and enthusiasm are, as well as what stands out. Orange evokes a sense of possibility.

Yellow relates to confidence. And joy. But not just any joy. The liberating childlike joy that is free from inhibitions. Attributed to illumination, it also refers to wit and cleverness - or eureka moments. Yellow is seen where there is happiness and a vibrant disposition. Yellow evokes a sense of audacity.

Green relates to restoration. Mostly attributed to nature and healing, it may have negative connotations too. However, in essence, it speaks of remedies and medicine. Green is where attunement and nourishment are. Green evokes a sense of renewal.

Blue relates to harmony. Attributed to security and trustworthiness, it can also be about getting along or safeguarding that. False and detrimental relations won’t do. This is about reliability. Blue appears where you can or are invited to let down your defenses. Blue evokes a sense of sincerity.

Purple relates to mysticism. Attributed to mystery and what goes beyond. It is tied to wisdom and spirit. Looking into the abstract. Purple permeates that which is considered sorcery or merely esoteric. Purple evokes a sense of depth.

Pink relates to endearment. Although mainly attributed to tender romances, it is not limited to that. It regards what is lovely to us and how gentle that makes us. Whether that’s a partner, a friend, a family member, or anything else that can be cherished. Pink appears as what is soft and sweet. Pink evokes a sense of care.

Brown relates to practicality. Attributed to grounded and methodical work as well as the other side of that coin, which is a resoluteness that can come across as obstinate. As if stuck in its ways. However, it may be more about having made sure of the approach. Brown can be found where there are chores and the cozy rewards after them. Brown evokes a sense of responsibility.

There is more to all of them, but maybe this is enough to start getting to know them and what they bring in and out.

Colors are intentionally and unintentionally used to convey more or to enact a response. It is worth pointing out, however, that they are also at times used to pass as what is not, which would be reprimandable if done for the sake of or what could result in harmful deceit. Otherwise, though, they can be played with for a wide range of experiences.

Saturday, March 2, 2024

It's been a Bit of Everything

Credit where credit is due. And I do believe that it’s better that I do this sooner rather than later.

I’m an artist. I love art. I love artists. And I would be lying if I said I owe it all to myself to have the wonderful life that I do now. It may not be as flashy as others, but it sure is filled with art.

Although I’ve always been quite critical and selective, that hasn’t closed me off from considering and integrating from others what could resonate with me in essence and continue to elaborate on it. Yes, I’ve been wary of being too impressionable, but you should also be wary of being too stubborn. As artists and other great individuals can expand your horizons and enrich your worldview. Possibly also help you in very practical ways on your path - artistic or otherwise. Art cleanses, mends, patches, uplifts, and empowers.

With that said, some of the major influences on my journey include these iconic people:

Yes, I did have a boyband craze phase. And no, I’m not even ashamed of it. These guys are amazing. They’re sweet, funny, witty, and overall lovable along with being talented and skilled at what they do. They are a part of what made my childhood so good and the driving force for me to learn English sooner rather than later (sometimes being obsessed with stars yields benefits). Obsessed with their choreographies and trying to go along with them too. And not sorry to say that my one and only celebrity crush, in which they didn’t even know I existed, was Lance Bass. Other celebrities, I’ve liked you but not that crazily.

He is quite the problematic character, ain’t he? I might never be fully sure how seriously he should be taken, but I’ve always appreciated how he exposed hypocrisy and vanity in others, as well as how shamelessly crass (& gross) he could be. Why? It’s quite raw. Could relate to his inability to nicely tolerate people for long, too. How he would make up characters and enact horrible or just terrible behaviors with them is something I found genius and worthwhile. I wanna see this side of life too and it’s best brought to light.

 Linkin Park
I worry about the generations growing up without these guys. And it still pains me that Chester Bennington is gone. But at least there’s still his legacy and the rest of the band around. Their work made me think and feel beyond what I otherwise would. To further question myself and all around me. To better spot injustices and lack of integrity. All while being hardcore badasses that could rock the world. It also offered solace and guidance for times I felt lost and alone as someone who didn’t quite fit in. And frankly, didn’t want to either.

 My Chemical Romance
Sometimes you hit rock bottom, and you’re so sick and done with everything that you can barely get up, let alone strive for much. And who’s there when that happens? Someone who gets it because they are or have been there too. You may joke about how “nobody understands me” is such an emo line, but there’s some truth in it. There are things you can only grasp when you go into and dwell in darkness. Then you’re so thoroughly unimpressed by all the shallow and trivial things that most others seem to care about. And somebody has to tell them that they ain’t that special. I needed this band during my worst years and I’m fortunate it was there. Excuse me as I sort myself into the emo faction, where some of the most wise and compassionate ride-or-dies are. (Hey, as a new generation of emos arises, we now have a new name: The Elder Emos.)

 Within Temptation
At some point, it all became too much for me to bear and I was saved. Yes, there is a reason why I so viscerally despise the phrase “nobody is coming to save you”. Because, taken out of context, not only is it pessimistic and excuses indifference, but it is also factually incorrect (you don’t know that). I was saved and I continue to be saved in different degrees. And try to be there for others as well. Somebody I literally owe my life to introduced me further to these glorious metalheads and they became the epic soundtrack of the soul-searching I was due for. Their music isn’t only insightful but also charges your spirit up so it won’t die, crushed under the weight of a meaningless reality. And don’t even get me started about symbolism!

 Taylor Swift
Well, this is an unexpected turn of events. I didn’t expect to like her this much, but then I did. After being sapped of my innocence and along it my sense of wonder, it was pleasant to see it still existed somewhere. Though, at first, I could resent it (how dare she have the support and safety I lacked), it eventually swept over me, instead bringing a valuable message: kindness is extremely important and love doesn’t have to be taboo or even a myth. I’ll indulge in her stories, whether because they’re relatable or because they show how it could have been different. Also, let’s not forget how resilient she’s been. Not to undermine others who have endured much, but she did have to face and overcome what was probably the worst time to be a popular topic - whether that accomplishment can be attributed to how cared for she’s been or not, it is quite the feat. And that I’ll forever applaud.

Now, as I moved on to more commitedly making content, I inevitably came across:

 Mr. Beast
This freakin’ kid is putting adults to shame. And you could argue that his deeds are only for the clicks, views, and follows, as they proved to work for him. But they’re still deeds that are helping others. I imagine he can just fan himself with all the money he makes despite - or because of - the controversy he causes whenever he does something that seems too good to be true. Not to mention all the fun he seems to be having while putting himself in different situations for his content. Hence, I’m not concerned… I don’t know him personally so I can’t speak much against or in his favor, but I’m glad he is at the top of the game, moving money around and actually getting stuff done. It made the whole scene more tolerable for me. And while I will not rival him, I too want to contribute to making the world better.

And yet, I believe everything would have been so much harder or even impossible if it wasn’t for the existence of:

Been a customer since the first day I could be. It has saved me money, time, and effort as well as opened up possibilities for me to pursue my interests beyond what I had available around me. It is a relief to know that whatever I need or want I can quickly and easily find in that store without fearing something will go wrong. I can enjoy wandering out and browsing local stores, but the convenience of online shopping is undeniable. Some of the Prime Video originals have been heaven-sent, too. And all the books made accessible, no matter how niche, have been a blessing to me. I still aspire to sell digital and physical products through it and I’m thankful that they facilitate that and more. Kudos to Jeff Bezos for what he’s built and what he shares.

I still wonder what really possessed Elon Musk to take on the challenge of championing the (seemingly lost) cause of free speech, but regardless, it benefits me. Even while I’m not doing much with the paths he’s opening up for truth-seekers and truth-tellers, it is alleviating. The way things were going, I could have been forced out of what lets me breathe. Maybe spiraled down into oblivion. I can only go against the current so much before drowning in it. And I’m sure that’s also the case for plenty of others. With the whole ordeal, many have been showing their true colors and it can be disappointing and discouraging, but also comforting as those who also honor truth, as uncomfortable as it can be to get to it and find it, come out from hiding and join in. I stand for it in part because, to me, without it, art wouldn’t be the same.

Last but not least:

||| I’d be so thoroughly damaged still if it wasn’t for the people who, despite having little to no incentive to do so besides being purposeful, have devoted themselves to helping others heal and grow. Spotting and tending to wounds they, themselves, didn’t cause. You can be quite a pain, but a worthwhile one at that. Your dedication to see it all through, even when it is hard and difficult, is rare these days and I wish you get back as much as you give out and more because you deserve it. Addressing everything from the environment to what makes us human at our core, respecting and embracing nature while cutting through illusions. Your attention to detail is unparalleled and it is fundamental for a diverse and inclusive ecosystem where more organisms can thrive and not succumb or perish by the force of the less symbiotic ones. I hope you are always around and I’ll do my best to shelter and promote you whenever I can and you require me to. Please never give up! It may not seem like it, but you all are miracle workers.

Friday, March 1, 2024


On to another cycle!
Here’s your reminder to grab your calendar and set your alarms.
Try not to miss the birthdays of those special to you.
Do something nice for them if not just congratulate them.

Another Spring

Another spring arrives...
Gardens, picnics, salads, and juice.
With plants growing and flowers starting to bloom again,
you may walk forward as you enjoy the scenery.
Inspired by how it all begins to come to life once more.

Thursday, February 29, 2024

Ready to Welcome a New Cycle

I made the posts I needed and wanted to make before starting a new cycle, completed and/or fixed previous ones too. Now looking forward to many months more of making content and taking it further!

I’m Not Nice Anymore

I’ll still be kind, in my own way, but I swear that if another person mistakes that with weakness and naivety and tries to take advantage of me, I’ll give them what they had coming until they wish they never met me. I’ll be their karma for this and more in their past. I'd suggest you steer clear of me if that's your intent. You're safe if not.

Needless Suffering is Needless

I had a tough past, and my present isn’t exactly all rainbows and sunshine either. I don’t bring it up often because I don’t want my work to revolve around that. Not because I’m hiding it and pretending otherwise. And I know that there are people who have it waaay worse so I can count myself fortunate. But sometimes it is as though others assume I’ve been having it easy and make it harder for me. Or there are just too many inconsiderate people around that would not give a damn regardless. I really wish people would stop getting in the way, for no good reason, of those who are helping themselves or even others. And even if someone’s having it easy, how justified is it really to disrupt that? It’s like people are miserable and wish others would be too. For me, personally, I’ve been working towards having a life I can enjoy and be content with. It allows me to be a better version of myself. And apparently, that’s an insult to those who neglect their well-being for the sake of slaving or hustling away (or for whatever misery they subject themselves to). Meanwhile, I wish we could all relax (at least a little) and do meaningful work that fulfills us.

What a Mixed Bag

I’ve learned from being overly planned and from being overly laidback. Neither I would recommend if you’re anything like me. One can be suffocating, stressful, and infuriating while the other can make me lose touch with all that matters and that gets me going. Yet, at the moment, I’m leaning more towards being planned and, while I believe I’m giving myself enough leeway and flexibility, life can still be quite surprising - for better or for worse! But I’m optimistic I’ll be able to handle what’s thrown at me next. If not on my own, with the priceless support that I have. Not knowing what might happen can be paralyzing if you expect to have everything under control, but I’m aiming to just make the most of however much is in my hands. And fingers crossed that things won’t get too hectic and/or alarming, so I can keep it together as I take it in strides. I’m still somewhat in preparation for bigger and better things, but don’t want to fully close myself off to great opportunities either. It’s unbelievable the amount of totally unexpected things that have happened in the past few years. Literally unbelievable. But that just goes to show again how amazing life can be when you let it.