Blog posts in this section pertain to my store and e-commerce. Posts will fall into a few main types.
Store announcements, including sales or new items and sections. I may also announce order campaigns. These campaigns will have an onsite shop component and a possible Kickstarter component. These usually have other content with them.
Product highlights will explore my available options. I will also take a look at the different finishes for prints. There may also be showcases of products in use or reviews.
Adventures in e-commerce including the different platforms I used. I may reflect on my experiences with them. I think I will mostly go behind the scenes on Woocommerce.
Happy Holidays, everyone! Christmas is creeping up soon for me. I also hear Hanukkah started at the same time.
Art and Personal Stuff
I’ve been doing a little personal reflection as of late. I feel I do need to make an apology about my drop in creativeness after a productive winter. It looks like I forgot I was an artist first, and a web person second or even third or so. Art kinda got shoved to the side, and it made me a bit sad. I was focusing too much on e-commerce, and not on what brought my friends to my page. Though I am proud of my expansion.
That being said I am trying to make some last minute rights in the fourth quarter. I did make a holiday caricature for Halloween and Thanksgiving. The Christmas art is even in progress!
There is also seriousness with getting SWMaC2 off the ground. It’s going to be a non sequitur with overarching fictional biography and other tales throughout. Each one will get their own release upon completion. I plan on redoing the opening pages with a comic form of the plans for the comic. From there I have the little guys!
Hopefully my time management will improve. I feel compelled to stream all of my arting.
I also have a small coupon code running for anybody looking to get gifts! It is for 10% off your whole order on anything in the store. You simply need to use the code holi2018.
With a little luck I’ll be investing in my own printer in the near future. I may use my tax return. I was tired of sending files to a company, for my prints to arrive dark or banded. If I’m super lucky I’ll even try finding space for a holographic laminate roller.
See you later and Happy Holidays!
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Today’s post deals with the special finishes I want for some prints in my shop. Before we get to it I do have a couple small updates.
I’m holding a 4th of July sale! With the code happy4th18 orders $10 or more get 25% off. That is my biggest discount ever! The coupon counts towards the entire store, which includes preorder and clearance items. The sale goes through July 8th.
Starting yesterday orders over $20 now qualify for free shipping. It also works with coupons, but the amount may need to be post discount.
I added a little new art recently. When things calm down it’s going to be a continuous thing.
Aside from that I am still trying to complete a gallery piece. I also have a book cover to work on, and my friends’ movie blog (plug!). Then back to comics.
Did you know I have a mailing list? Click here to subscribe to it! You’ll get a special sign up coupon, and a birthday coupon. I may only send an email out once every week or, two. There will also be sale or coupon notifications within 24 hours of it starting.
My eventual goal for prints, Artist Alley, and the shop is to print from home. I felt I’d save a lot of time or wait, and money doing so. I want to be able to print thumbnails for color control. Work is done in RGB and I always have the worst time converting to CMYK. If I had a dedicated profile it would probably be doable. It’s my biggest hurdle printing from digital files.
I’ve read about using pdf files instead of jpgs. Have people done this and had success? I think I did it once and it may have gone better.
I may make the equipment a Patreon goal. I’m hoping when I reach it I’d have the capacity to warrant printing from home.
I do have a few specific prints to talk about today, as well.
The only special plan I really had for Icy Glare was a special holographic overlay. I’m having a hard time finding it. I’m sure I have the know how, but I lack the equipment to do it myself.
The two finishes I had in mind were either snow flurries or a frosted window. I was always fascinated by frosted windows and their crazy patterns as a kid. I tried to achieve some of that with the border. Since I know it can be done, I’d want the overlays to reflect in cool colors only.
Other than that I was wondering about silver ink or foil on the embroidery of Helena’s obi.
One of my main pieces and my online avatar. I actually had some of these effects in mind while I was making the print. It has two main components: the chrysanthemums of the kimono and the negative space.
If I were ever to make the kimono the chrysanthemum flowers on it would be lined in gold foil. I want to create this in the print. A friend of mine (plug!) brought in gold foil for me to try, but we had a sizing issue with the fine lines.
What I decided on for a base was a coating of bronze ink. I decided on Dr. Ph Martin’s Iridescent Bronze. The idea was to loosely scratch some on in random areas. Before it dried I would rag some off (hopefully without smudging). I wanted it to be a little textured as well. Another friend of mine suggested gold nail glitter for that. I may mix gold with copper for the warmer tone I want to achieve. It’s very fine so I think it will work.
The biggest headache I’ve had is how I would achieve the pearlescent effect of the negative space. I was looking at Perfect Pearls shimmer spray, but it seems to be sold out on Amazon. They came out with an alternative called Dylusions Shimmer Spray, which could work. My final thought was glitter infused mica powder, provided it would work as a light spray.
My only gripe is not having these in front of me to experiment.
The main challenge may be the risk of ruining the print. I used Catprint for the first batch. I’m not sure what type they use. I may be able to minimize risk avoiding alcohol or other solvents, and too heavy of application.
Future Print Finishes or Other Options
I’ve been looking into foil and special papers. I have already done a few with felt texture paper. I know Catprint also has shimmer papers in white or cream. I’ve also been looking at metal prints, pearlescents, wall scrolls, and puzzles. I’ve been bookmarking recommendations which I can include later.
I feel like I’m trying to achieve something that may be hard to do at the small scale level.
Thoughts or suggestions? I feel like I’m making this much harder than it needs to be. I’m also curious about the demand for these special finishes.
When I do have my solution I will write another post detailing my finds or process.
I also wanted to get into casting. One idea I had was Mr. Snail magnets or ornaments. I also had an idea for Triune portrait coasters or medallions.
The blog will return with: My PC Build
Some links go to Amazon. This site is in the Amazon Affiliate Program.
I’m holding a sale the entirety of Cyber Week after Thanksgiving on my Etsy store! I aptly added the CyberSet. The entire week will have free standard domestic shipping. On Monday only is a day of an extra 20% off! If you need the link to my Etsy store you can find it here! https://www.etsy.com/shop/akaneArt
I am also waiting to hear back from Ohayocon any day now. I’ll be sure to announce when I get the news.
A lot has been going on including more job hunting and a possible move next month.
Right as of now I’m focusing my efforts on the long put-off work for Comics vs Art II. I got Normal Rockwell’s Soda Jerk. For my rendition I was hoping to make a goofy scene with some of the Nox characters.
When I can get back to my regularly scheduled programming animation practice, more pin-ups and illustrations, and the self-referential webcomic are back on! I have been working on more drawings and sketches for my queue. I plan on using Twitch.
The last big announcement is that prints of some of my new work are coming!!! They will be available on my Storenvy and a new Tictail store. I also made a new product of just the bookmarks to make the shipping fairer.
Soon holographic paper (on select prints), 3D anaglyphic (on select prints), edits, and other sized will become available!
Ohayocon is in a matter of weeks and I’m getting excited. Still a lot to prepare for but I’m sure I’ll be done in time. Something that got started this year I appreciate is a map of the artists!
I’ll have my usual post-con sale on my store. I’ve also recently created a Patreon page. I’m seeking monthly support so I can work towards supporting myself fully on my artwork. It works kind of like a subscription or an ongoing kickstarter. Patronage comes with rewards like first looks, access to WIPs or FAQs, and free postcards, prints, or posters.
Aside from Ohayocon I’m working on finding some employment. I had an internship interview yesterday and I’m talking with a recruiter tomorrow about a temporary graphic design contract. I’ve been doing a lot more applying i hopes I start 2015 employed.
I’ll close this here. I hope everyone had a wonderful Holiday and will have a Happy New Year!
October is upon us and I am excited for fall despite my current circumstances. I love the fresh smell mixed with leaves that wafts through the air. Cocoa and sweaters are back in fashion. Spooky movies come out and you don’t feel out of place watching them. Pumpkins and Thanksgiving! Yes, I enjoy a pumpkin spice latte from time to time myself. I am sad to see the trees become bare later on, but it makes us closer to Christmas.
I am one of those special snowflakes that are not particularly fond of Halloween. As a kid I loved dressing up and begging for my pumpkin of candy. I still love Jack-O-Lanterns since it gives me the chance to be creative and I love candlelight. Yet, I think it’s because so many people go overboard, or what happens to Halloween as people reach college age that steers me away from it. It’s also hard to celebrate holidays when you have other matters on the mind.
I’m still job hunting, but prospects are coming. I am still hoping to get back to Columbus, but I must go where I get offered a job. One of my dogs is also battling a lesion while the older one is having difficulty walking from time to time.
All that aside I’d like to talk about some of my future plans with my art and other projects.
The site– If you haven’t seen yet I updated the background and the color scheme for fall. I added donation tools to the front and added my email addresses to the footer.
The portfolio is about to see a major overhaul. I’m ditching the deviantArt provided one and creating my own. Projects will be separated by school, paid, personal, and art. I’m hoping I can make it pop quite a bit and what I’ll learn can carry over to the main site. Something I wanted to do with the original design was a hover function where the button background would show a random piece of artwork from a set. Maybe be able to do it with some js and .gif’s.
Art– I’m starting to create some original work that is related to music set themes instead of any of my original stories. Some day they may overlap. I select a set of related music due to one thing or another, and make a set based on what I picture while I listen to it. I’m working on one set now, with three loosely planned out with another one to three to do.
I also have a digital painting in the works!
All that’s left to do on it is some final brush work to clean up details, proportions, extra lighting, or mismatched areas. Then I’ll work on a background for it. Not sure what to do just yet.
I’m also going to try getting back to 3D modeling. Maybe some things may become available for print.
Some other art may be coming soon that go along with the story projects. Speaking of which…
Story Projects– Syrens might be starting before the year is over. I’m going to try developing some back story and relaying it to my writer buddy who’s helping. I also need to work on concept art and get in touch with the military assistant about what to use and what not to use. For that I’m going to give detailed character backgrounds and weapon preferences after I check everything with the writer. We’re not sure what year it will take place except it’s the near future.
Triune might be getting some small or full-length games of it’s main story or extended universe. I’m currently trying to teach myself RPG Maker after it’s been on my computer for months. Art that will come with this include sprites, objects, and character art for concept and speaking. Full 3D in Unity is also an option. I’m still trying to find time for historical research and editing on the story. I feel there are a lot of kinks I want to make work or change as little as possible.
I’m still itching to do some story for Nox Aeternitatis. I’m hoping to be able to start it some time next year but I want a good chunk ready to go before the Black Night arc finishes. I’m looking over the character designs again and hopefully making some finalization.
Youtube– I’m going to try a let’s play channel! A lot of people are suggesting to start with Five Nights at Freddy’s. Other thoughts for channel openers include The Cursed Forest (with translation), Ib, Witch’s House, Dread Out, Amenesia, or Yume Nikki. I plan on eventually doing most or all of those. Your suggestions or opinions are highly appreciated!
Sorry about the length of this one. Thanks for reading!
I redid the color scheme and such for the site! It’s really nice and colorful for the new season. Updates aside from that include: the return of a commission page, emails to contact me by in the footer, making the border of the images on the home page css instead of part of the jpg, some jpgs were changed to png, and the move from the page by page navigation to css format instead of jpg buttons. Much easier to edit everything by.
I haven’t found a job just yet, but I’m looking every day and working on my networking for a job and also my art. I got my account at conceptart.org active again, and it’s hard to appease people with roughs alone. I have a few illustrations in the works now that I’m getting better and working on my composition and perspective. I’m trying to get feedback on it.
My dad also said he’s willing to help me get driving lessons somewhere, though he should be coming down soon and I can see if I can get some practice from him.
I’m working on trying to draw at least one thing, spend some time on a coloring, work on a 3D model, or make a practice web page/design a day. I’m trying to get back in to the swing of things and get some portfolio work. I’m also going to seriously try starting the comic soon. I’m going to something Sunday that’s supposed to be a Columbus comic makers fellowship. I should get some good feedback and community building from it!
To tantalize I have this drawing, did some changes after noticing them. Here’s Sam:
He’s a scientist in the world of the comic, and actually one of the head scientists working in medicinal technologies (or what the official term is). The context of this drawing is that this is the first panel we see him in where he’s back on the island he loves so much, having to leave because of an emergency evacuation. He’s there to assist some hired guns to investigate what went wrong.
Though I enjoy doing this… Compare the above to…
Gah! That. His original drawing and color from 09 and 10 has so many things wrong with it, but it’s from when I first had the set of weird dreams that inspired Syrens.
I enjoy watching myself improve. Someone recommended some books my way after he said some of my anatomy still seemed off. (This was last week, but I know I still need some work.) I wish people would help on what I ask, mainly my points above, instead of getting so worked up on something people take years to master anyway.
I worked on my commission prices after some feedback if anyone wanted to take a look on the commission page. Every little bit helps, and you also get an original piece of art out of it.
Think that’s about it for now. Hopefully see everyone sooner than a month.
Christmas is only a couple days away but it sure doesn’t look like it outside. My area got hit by a ton of rain with flash flood warnings. As far as the forecast looks, there will also be no snow again. I did get a drafting desk I can probably later use as a light table. There’s just space issues right now so I can’t set it up.
Anyway, I’ll also give a quick update on how my art is coming along.
Encore is finished!
I also started work on something I’ve titled City Window.
Still a bit of work to go, though…
Lately I’ve also been working in Blender. I made a logo:
and a still life:
The still life is a little special because the tea set was a high school project in arts class. I made it hoping my friend Maya and I would be able to use it some day. That day never came, though, since the majority of it never got glaze fired. At least now we have our tea.
I graduated from college a couple weeks ago. It’s weird having so much time on my hands, but I’m making the most of it.
I’m open for commissions if anyone’s interested… *hint… *hint…
Again, Merry Christmas to everyone and I look forward to seeing some of you at Ohayocon or around!
Haven’t really started working on my next retro article. Sorry.
I have recently started a shop at www.etsy.com. Here is the direct link to my store: http://www.etsy.com/shop/afoerster. Right as of now all that is there is the watercolor from before and two charcoal drawings copied from my dogs. Everyone I have asked says that my items are priced reasonably.
I recently purchased some fabric from Ichiroya. This is the same kimono flea market from which I got my furisode.
I am super excited about getting this fabric. I plan on making a michiyuki. It is similar to a haori, or jacket. It closes in the front, can be worn indoors or outside, and is kind of like a (nice) artist’s smock.
September 15th I go to an office on OSU to take an aptitude test. No one in my family thinks I’ll find a (well paying) job with an Art & Technology BFA. I am also undecided on a minor so this appointment will hopefully help me find the right road to take. Classes start the 22nd.