I’ve had a couple of solid weeks of work so despite making good progress on a number of things in progress I’ve not managed to publish a video of a completed project. I’m considering altering my approach to ensure more regular updates.
Anyway it was a dad and F day today. “The Nooms” as they are called are the representations of the numbers in his F’s favourite tablet game ‘Dragonbox Numbers’, which is incidentally the only educational games series that I have ever yet found able to wholeheartedly endorse both as parent and educator.
Obviously it is not my IP but I had a look and couldn’t find any colouring sheets or activities suitable for his abilities. So I whipped up these and we had fun painting them to match their game counterparts and the big brother mucked in to help finish painting the last of them when he got home from school.
I now have two build videos of the build process of my ‘Zelda Wind Waker’ ‘Hero’s Bow’ live on my YouTube channel.
Part one here takes the project through from idea to a finished form.
and part two here takes the project through to painted completion and ultimately collapse and catistrophic failure.
I will persevere and rebuild or recreate this project on a sturdier and more flexible frame in short order. For now however I have chosen to pursue some other projects including tool making and tool restoration as well as finishing the arrows and quiver prior to reattempting the bow.
Zelda Wind Waker grabbed my imagination the very first time I saw it many, many years ago now on a Gamecube in somebody else’s lounge room. Now, by the power of modern computing, I have been sharing the joy and frustration of this adorable game with my sons. Intermittent play has gotten us almost to the end after a few months now. I also now have two of three Zelda inspired projects complete and ready to share. The first is the newest one, Link’s boomerang (the protagonist is Link, Zelda is the eponymous princess). This was given to F for Christmas and was designed specifically to be light enough for indoor play as outdoors it is very likely to end up in a tree or on the roof.
The second is this papercraft model of the Link’s boat the ‘King of Red Lions’ This took way longer than anticipated and is far from the perfection I envisioned. But it is at least done. I have shared a gallery of images here on imgur and in r/papercraft here.
Lots of rich discussion about the years ahead but no answers yet. Indulged myself with a game purchase. Like it’s predecessor Just Cause 2, part 3 is 100% pure mayhem. Better writing than a Michael Bay film though every bit as silly and explody and much more fun.
A lot of long days have left me with not much to say of an evening save a string of Z’s. Nevertheless lots of projects have come together over the weekend and the beginning of this week.
A set of three nested photography sitting boxes. To be used for portraiture in the studio N has just signed a three month lease on.
A bird house.
Assembled from scraps and painted with a stinky old enamel helpfully labeled ‘Stromboli’ found in the shed.
Puppets are taking over in my classroom. Yesterday I had a mixed group from various grades thanks to a sports day so we made free choice pin and paper puppets like this example which I whipped up in lunch. Today my class began making their own interpretations of the characters in the book we have been reading with the intention that they will then animate scenes from the story.
As noted on insta, we have denuded the entire town’s supply of split pins and I am now desperately hunting more.
I finished another segment of the costume build video. We didn’t make it out for a costume shoot over the weekend as I had hoped to do. Looking forward to this weekend though.
I desperately need to do away with the huge and unwieldy collection of clips that are clogging up my hard drives. Editing a gogo.
Fell in love with the art and concept of this game:
I am absolutely devastated that I missed the kickstarter (and associated loot) last year. Can’t hardly wait for release.
Phase complete on the Sir Vader Armour, ready to paint tomorrow. Which is a huge relief. Way behind on progress vids I know. In time in time.
Changed the blogs theme while trying to figure out what has broken in its CSS. Working fine in the big three browsers but broken display and back end in my preferred Opera in the last week.
I’ve pent the last couple of evenings indulging in a little gaming care of the Freedom Bundley. In particular I’ve been entertaining L with a little ‘Octodad‘ which has ‘QWOP‘ levels of frustration and hilarity and challenging my reflexes with a bit of the ol’ FPS bullet hell ‘Tower of Guns‘ As in inane and wonderful as it sounds.
This spectacularly lame screenshot brought to you by an unwillingness to get drawn in while trying to write.
Politics has been stormy this week and my prediction of a loss of majority is looking more and more likely. But I don’t have energy for a rant. This article (pay walled but available free as your first of the week, or in full text here) read over breakfast this morning upset me. Not that it was in any way unexpected, suicides are the inevitable result of the robodebt policy. But it is just so fucking pointless, so completely unnecessary and to be putting so many people through this Brechtian horror show is just unforgivably ghastly.
Caught up on Ctrl-Paint videos. I have a lot of exercise to do if I want to get as good as I want to be.
Drew, cut and pinned the first fabric elements for the Sir Vader costume. The tabard is now ready for sewing. Wasted a bunch of time looking for patterns online before just making my own. Still fiddling with the cloak pattern. Prepped the elastic and velcro strapping for all foam segments for stitching. Encountered tensioning problems with the sewing machine and had to put it on hold pending tech support.
Continuing tidying the house and yard. Doing daily pool visits building the boys water confidence. L looks like he might be swimming by the end of the week.
Began looking at my planning, seems I don’t have one of the key tools required so I’ll chase that up over coming days.
I don’t game very much anymore. I love to, but I don’t often allow it the time. I indulge in a little when L is keen to play with me, today we squeezed in a little time with BUD. In the past year I have only really played The Witcher 3, which as I am nowhere near complete, so that will keep my occasional gaming fixes covered for some time to come. I’m saving a review of that until I have at least completed the main storyline which still seems a way off. Suffice to say it is good, easily the most mature and well written game I have ever played. As a result of all of this I only bought one thing in the Steam winter sale:
ABZÛ which I purchased for myself and a cousin at the $5 price point entirely on the basis of the studio’s previous game ‘Journey‘.
I know I covered some of this a little over a week ago but I hadn’t yet finished the game then and wasn’t in review mode, if you missed it the linked post includes a playthrough video of Journey.
ABZÛ is a lovely thing, but less of a game and more of a interactive cinematic experience. There is no failure mode and there really is no challenge, the path is linear, the storytelling is minimal but my oh my is it beautiful, at times breathtaking.
Alas it is never as moving or sublime as the studio’s previous masterpiece Journey which thanks to its innovative use of multiplayer, meditative narrative form and stunning beauty I would buy for PC in a heartbeat and play again. I will return to ABZÛ again to show off the schooling simulations and sense of scale they have achieved but I doubt I will ever again play right through it as I have repeatedly in the case of Journey.
Days slipping by in Festivus. Lots of Lego, lots of painting, bubble making, a little carpentry and plenty of swimming in the river has occupied our days. I’ve been reading a preview copy of my father’s new novel and Steven Pinkers Style guide. We watched the sadly too long and quite disappointing Christmas special of Sense 8 and I’ve treated a cousin and myself to an on sale copy of ABZU. Which is a delightful aquatic adventure by the creators of one of my favourite games of all time:
Today we are off to the Folk Festival for the afternoon and evening, care of Christmas tickets and babysitting provided by my mother.
A small sampling of our output over the last few days:
This last playing with my new carbon ink Japanese brush pen. Lovely thing.
A frustrating, largely unproductive day. Trying children pushed patience limits from in the early morning right up until now when they are still battling bedtime despite the youngest flatly refusing to take a midday nap and being absolutely beside himself for hours. I was up at 4:50 this morning hoping to catch some shooting stars, had it been impressive I would have gotten L up too. Unfortunately the light pollution in town is pretty overwhelming so after standing about in the cold for a while I gave up and went back to bed for an hour or so before the boys woke up.
The chook tractor was 10mm too wide to get on the trailer upright. After much wrangling, some very hard lifting, the crushing of one side awning and the removal of the roof we have wrestled it on sideways. This right on dark so a photo of the damage tomorrow. The chickens are spending the evening in the laundry. The original plan of the chook tractor was made with the trailer width in mind and had plenty of room. Frustratingly the new one fell just over the limit.
Watching a film this evening creative endeavors after if at all.
Went on the hunt for some fresh children’s apps for the planes and discovered the Toca Boca library. We’ve grabbed the free Toca Kitchen 2 which is delightful as well as the $1 Toca Lab, also great. Tossing up purchasing one of the $5 apps too. Likely the Nature, Hair salon, or painting figures. All and more available for ios of course.
I’ve been using Dragonbox apps as reward activities in tutoring all are of high quality.
Always on the hunt for other entertaining and educational apps.
Pottering and digging in the garden while the soil is soft from last night’s rain. Scheming with N about what we will do next year, what our response to ‘This Changes Everything’ will be, where we will buy, how long we will stay in Cobar. N is listening to the book now too and is thus feeling increasingly guilty about flying to the other side of the world. Part of my response is that I have resolved that we will do a manual carbon offset on our return planting enough trees to cover our trip and more. We will do this our selves rather than trusting some agency to do it on our behalf.
Sporadic work on the political posters I mentioned recently. Going to do another evolution draft this evening, finished one last night. Perhaps even some castle work. Oh how I want that card finished.