Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Medievalism and War of the Worlds

The medieval market was grand, as expected. It was more fun than I had thought, especially when we sat together at night and just talked. Definitely the most impressive market I've been to so far. The weather was nice, except for some rain on Sunday. There were loads of different shops and a quite good program, with lots of variety, so usually there weren't too many people at the different events (since they were repeated frequently throughout the day and since there were many different artists having their show at similar times). We didn't see all shows, but we saw what we wanted to see most, and for the rest we just couldn't get enough energy anymore. Lots of walking around.
I liked Commedia dell'armi most. It was some kind of medieval musical with weapons, even though the artists probably give it a different name. It was funny and impressive. The songs were mostly modern and the artists picked just the right songs for the death and rejection scenes. Seeing it purely as a fight show, it was also one of the most interesting ones. The artists didn't seem like they held back to not hurt each other, as it often happens. That was nice. I wasn't surprised to hear later that they are professional actors. Their acting was fully convincing, which made part of the fun.
I was also impressed by the shops. Usually anything at medieval markets is quite expensive, especially jewellry. This time I found lots of stuff that was cheaper than in normal shops downtown. Needless to say that I bought fairly much. Among it was a nice fibula, something that I had been looking for forever. We also bought a box of mead, since we discovered that the German shop Zwergenschmiede again sells it. It's the best mead I've found so far, except for a certain Dutch mead. About a year ago we ordered roughly 20 bottles from Zwergenschmiede, and right after that they stopped selling mead (we never got the bottles). So we are quite happy to once again have Zwergenschmiede mead.


Comedia dell'arme.

Another sword show. The artists showed original medieval fight techniques which were recovered from medieval plates.

And naked people who used the public bathtub (with warm water!) on Sunday morning. We only realized they were fully naked after we went to them and chatted a bit.


I finished reading The War of the Worlds today. Haven't seen the film, because the trailer looked like it would be a horror-thriller flick with no interesting story or characters. On the last few pages of the book a sense of joy and relief came over me. I'm still not sure if that was because I was glad that the book ended (I was!) or because of the cheesy ending. The ending wasn't bad, I just expected a less happy one. When reading the third to last chapter, I got some cynical joy out of wondering how Hollywood would certainly not make the girl die and have some kitschy reunion between them all. Then, the book provided that. Oh well. I prefer books with bad endings, because they touch me more and are less common.
All in all, it probably isn't a bad book. It's a classic, and that sums it up quite well. Classics, like Lord of the Rings, have a tendency towards a nice story or background concepts (thus why they became classics), but usually also have a less interesting style, because they are usually quite old. I'd have prefered some more dialogue in the book. The parts with dialogue were good, the rest got a bit exhausting after a while.
But, as I said, the concept is nice. And it's the concept that Wells, and other SciFi writers, are famous for, and it's what is the most important part of SciFi. So I guess, despite the style, War of the Worlds is a successful SciFi book.

Friday, August 25, 2006

No more Pluto 2

This is great. Love the asteroid one.

No more Pluto

Reading the news about the now un-planety state of Pluto, I realize how limited my personal universe is. The most profound thought that the news caused in me wasn't "This is actually an interesting debate. I always thought Pluto was quite small for a planet." or "Hey, this is a major event in world history. It will change the perception of the universe of generations after me. And I'm experiencing it."
It was "That's how much use school education is for you. Five years ago you have to learn the names of all planets by heart, and now they're not even valid anymore." and (tadaa!) "Wait. The Sailor Moon girls are named after the planets. Sailor Pluto doesn't exist anymore. The series is screwed up now!".

On a more serious note (how serious is the loss of a planet anyway?), I'm going to a medieval market this weekend, Saturday and Sunday in Golling/Salzburg. The only market this year that doesn't take place in the middle of a city, and instead has it's main attractions on a nice, big field. Also one of the few that don't end in the afternoon, but continue until deep into the night, so you can look at fireshows and talk with the artists over a horn of mead. Yaaaay!

Sunday, August 20, 2006

The Insides Out

This is what DrownedKeyboardTM looks like from the inside. Note that this is AFTER the drownage came over it and drowned the major dirt out of it.
Do not hold back you disgust. It is deserved. It is also cleaned and in use again. The other it, I mean.

To easen your disgust (I do hope you don't eat while reading my blog) I'll give you something nicer to look at. Illustration inspired by Subway to Sally's song 'Die Rose im Wasser', follow-up to an older painting of mine ('Kleid aus Rosen').

Das Abendrot vergoldet ihre Wangen
Ein Aal schlpft ber ihre weie Brust
Und durch die Zweige geht ein letzter Seufzer
Ein Hauch von Trauer und ein Hauch von Lust

- Subway to Sally, 'Die Rose im Wasser'

If the big versions of the pictures don't work for you, I have no idea how to fix it. I can enlarge them once and then I get letters and numbers. I'm thinking Blogger has an implemented self-security to prevent people from intentionally torturing themselves visually.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Buy Gothic Clothes. More expensive than anywhere else.

I managed to empty a glass full of perfectly drinkable liquid over my keyboard. Now my computer keeps making a beep sound twice a second, which is rather irritating *sigh*
The keyboard also stopped working an hour or two after it got drowned.
I'll learn from it and keep the liquids to the other side of the table, where insects fall into them at night (lamp over glass, results in insects going up, burning and going down again), but where they don't get pushed over.

Thankfully, I'm an orderly person and have a spare keyboard in my room. Being an orderly person is helpful. If you're not an orderly person, you might lose stuff that you had 35 years ago, as it happened to the NASA.

Apart from my sarcasm, I had some small fun creating an imaginary Gothic fashion label in the wake of Gotika666's creation, and designing some magazine ads for it (including the logo design). They company is called 'Inky', because Gothic clothing is all black and you might as well use ink to make the clothes that you used to wear in your coloured periods of life black.

For the pityful non-German speaking people out there: "Todschick" means (literally translated) dead chic/classy. Now go and laugh at my amazing sense of humour.

Thursday, August 10, 2006


Just posting to point everybody who comes across this blog to an online comic that started recently, Hero. It's made by one of my favourite online comic artists, who did a different online comic previously ('follow'). I loved 'follow' and was not happy about Hwei Lim stopping updating it. It had a more appealing, dreamy story than any other webcomic I know. 'Hero' seems to have the same feel so far, and even though I still prefer 'follow', the new comic also shows a nice way of using the internet as a medium for comics, deviating from the typical online comic style (in relation to methods). Check it out and you'll know what I mean.

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Elfwood *rant*

I've always liked Elfwood. It's the one place that made me start to draw, so it always got some inherent respect from me, and I didn't care much for the (valid) Elfwood-bashing that came from most other online fantasy art places. Yes, there are mostly beginners with anime-drawings on Elfwood. It's also true that there's no real constructive criticism, so Elfwood doesn't harbour artistic development much (which is fine, since I don't post there to get constructive criticism; if I get it anyway, it's a plus). I also didn't mind when its entrance requirements were tightened, because I agree that 'my cat' and 'a stickman that I drew during class on lined paper' don't belong there.
However, recent occurrences have made me lose some of my appreciation and respect for Elfwood. Firstly, the HUGE outcry that came from various places about the "Pimp my Elfwood" livejournal and later the same project on Eatpoo. Right, so someone takes your art, paints over it and (for the most part) improves it. I can imagine that some people might be miffed if they come across the paintover by chance, but I don't see why they'd be offended by the simple idea of people improving their pictures. I certainly don't understand the huge cloud of annoyance that hangs over Elfwood and Epilogue because of it. One picture doesn't mean the world, nor does a paintover.
Secondly, Elfwood's definition of 'Fantasy'. It's a Fantasy art gallery, so I understand the restrictions. 'Fantasy' isn't just humans with pointy ears, though. Yes, running gag, if you draw pointy ears on it, the picture will get into Elfwood. But there are things like Urban Fantasy, or Medieval Fantasy. Still, a picture that shows a girl in a medieval setting gets rejected because it's not Fantasy. Not all characters in Medieval Fantasy are non-human. 'A Song of Ice and Fire' features mostly human characters, and it's still Fantasy. Fantasy isn't just High Fantasy with Elves.

Friday, August 04, 2006

New monitor

Wheee. My new workspace:

Emphasis on 'space'. Finally I don't have a huge amount of my desk being taken away by a huge monitor anymore. Awesome! I already feel much more comfortable working here.