Friday, September 04, 2009

The week in summary.... editing continues.


We’ve had a slow week for art. The Diatryma has made an appearance; it is a six-wheeled vehicle now and I am waiting for Pea-Man to ink it. I got a response from Lee Madison early in the week and he’s going to get on the two pieces remaining as soon as pet troubles subside.

Geoff and his honey are off to the land of cherry blossoms and green tea and very small apartments. They should have arrived by now and I wish them the best of luck. Geoff was not idle during that final hectic week; he delivered substantial edit work on the Draconis Combine and Capellan Confederation’s BattleMechs and they are now ready to go to the proofreaders. I am probably not going to see any further edit work from Geoff for at least a week, maybe longer.

It’s okay. The art list was shrinking and I was getting happier, then it suddenly swelled as we found an additional piece which had a turret traced off a 3025 vehicle done originally by Duane Loose. That won’t do at all. Another piece was hastily (and inadequately) modified to accommodate five rocket launcher packs – that has to be redone, but fortunately Mike Sullivan is up for it.

Speaking of Mike, he’s had some trouble keeping a working internet connection, and that has slowed his ability to work. Furthermore, his computer has been slow of late, and he had to reinstall the operating system to get it back – unfortunately, a lot of the software he was using has been ‘updated’ and now he has to cope with the learning curve in addition to the actual work of creating nifty tank designs. He is equal to the task, I am sure. To be honest, I think Mike has produced some of his best work for this TRO. I am not blowing my own horn here, simply noting that some of the best comments his work has received over at have been for his more recent pieces.

I was told once by the artist David Sutherland III (of TSR and Dungeons and Dragons fame) that his best work was done at the direction of a customer, as it forced him to try out new ideas and stretch his abilities. I think this might be true of a lot of artists out there – I know it is certainly true of my own electronics and modeling hobbies.

The music has been updated and rotated. There is a bit of B-52s, something you may never have heard of, but which should please you nonetheless. It is comprised of many natural sounds in addition to the usual musical instruments. Thunder, woodpeckers, birdsong – they’re all there. Another bit is by Janis Joplin, one of her better songs and still a good listen forty years after that poor woman met her end at an early age.

Still another song is by Nada Surf - ‘Always Love’ never fails to get my head bobbing. And finally, there is Incubus with a piece called ‘Love Hurts’. I don’t know much about the band, only that I like that particular song. Good vocal harmonies. In fact, most of the songs on my list have that quality in common.

My son will be required to listen to President Obama’s speech to the schools sometime soon. It reminds me of the closing paragraph in C. S. Lewis’s essay ‘The Poison of Subjectivism’.

“Unless we return to the crude and nursery-like belief in objective values, we perish. If we do, we may live, and such a return might have one minor advantage. If we believed in the absolute reality of elementary moral platitudes, we should value those who solicit our votes by other standards than have recently been in fashion. While we believe that good is something to be invented, we demand of our rulers such qualities as ‘vision’, ‘dynamism’, ‘creativity’ and the like. If we returned to the objective view we should demand qualities much rarer, and much more beneficial – virtue, knowledge, diligence and skill. ‘Vision’ is for sale, or claims to be for sale, everywhere. But give me a man who will do a day’s work for a day’s pay, who will refuse bribes, who will not make up his facts and who has learned his job.”


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