August 29, 2009

Blue Butterfly

Filed under: Sketch — Tags: — Screenhog @ 11:03 am

blue morpho butterfly

This will most likely just be the first of a few butterfly pastels that I’ll be doing within the next few months. This one is of a group of morpho butterflies.

August 24, 2009

Sopwith Camel

Filed under: Comics,Sketch — Tags: , — Screenhog @ 8:12 pm

August 21, 2009

CHRIS-Crossword

Filed under: Puzzles,Wordplay — Screenhog @ 4:46 pm

It’s my birthday today! What does that mean? It means that I’m going to put up a puzzle celebrating ME! (Sort of.)

The puzzle below is an almost-finished network of real words. The only things missing are the letters in my name… all single C, H, R, I, and S is gone. Can you figure out how to complete it?

Click here for the answer

August 19, 2009

Twelve Words

Filed under: Puzzles,Wordplay — Screenhog @ 1:25 pm

P.S. I’ve been a bit busy lately (those who know me personally will understand why), and while I plan to maintain my twice-a-week update schedule, I doubt I’ll be able to do much more than that. Just letting you know in advance.

August 15, 2009

The Internet

Filed under: Comics,Opinion — Tags: — Screenhog @ 11:40 am

In 1995 there was a short-lived Warner Bros. cartoon called Freakazoid!, in which the title character got his superhero powers by entering cyberspace and gaining all of the knowledge of the Internet. The cartoon itself became a zany piece of animation history that has to be seen to be believed, but the concept of gaining superhero powers through the Internet was very interesting.

You have to understand that this was 1995. There was no Facebook, no YouTube, no Google, and no Flash animations. Yahoo was only a year old, Netscape Navigator was the most popular web browser, and most people entered the Internet at speeds that would make the above comic take about 10 seconds to download.

And yet, none of this mattered to the early pioneers of the Internet, because they had accomplished their goal of allowing people from any part of the world to share information. Doctors could find cures for diseases from medical papers written in a different continent the day before, families could contact their relatives in a foreign land without paying expensive long distance charges, and artists could show millions of people lovable animations of hamsters dancing to a Disney song played at twice its speed.

Wait… what?
(click to read the rest of this post…)

August 12, 2009

Shooting Stars

Filed under: Sketch — Tags: — Screenhog @ 7:22 pm

Around this time every year, the Perseid meteor shower makes its appearance, and thousands of astronomers stay up until the wee hours of the morning to watch hundreds of shooting stars. While I have a pretty good reason not to stay up late to watch them this year, I thought they’d be a good subject for some quick chalk pastel art:

August 8, 2009

Game Review – VisualEyes

Filed under: Game Reviews,Reviews — Screenhog @ 5:03 pm

VisualEyes is a game of quick-thinking and creativity. It’s a game that anyone can play, but knowing a whole lot of common phrases will give you the edge you need to win.

The game contains 18 dice that have individual pictures on each side. The dice are rolled, and then everyone around the table tries to find common phrases, like I’ve done in the illustration to the left of this review. In one mode of the game, players have about two minutes to find as many phrases as possible on the dice. After the time is up, everyone compares their word lists. If two or more people came up with the same phrase, they cancel each other out, and if someone came up with a phrase that’s a bit of a stretch, they’re voted down by the other players, but every legitimate phrase earns one point. First person to 20 points wins!

Creativity is encouraged, although bending the pictures too much into other things to try and make them fit a phrase probably won’t work. Playing on words is allowed, which means that “peace” can also be “piece”. You can add small words like “a”, “in”, or “and” to help you. Also, the phrases are only allowed to be two pictures long, so my sentence at the bottom wouldn’t be allowed (whether or not it made the other players laugh).

All things considered, it’s a fun game to play with a few friends, and it usually has some pretty hilarious moments. For instance, on one round that showed two dice with a calendar and a penguin on an iceberg, someone wrote “March of the Penguins”. On another round that had an obese man and a parka, someone suggested Chris Farley’s “Fat Guy in a Little Coat”.

There are a few downsides of this game. For instance, if you play this game too many times in a row, you start noticing a few of the same phrases over and over again, which takes a bit of the fun away. Another point is that it doesn’t work to have large groups of people play this, as it gets difficult for everyone to see the pictures on the dice. It’s also more of an adult game… in my experience, younger kids have a hard time coming up with phrases.

Those, however, are fairly minor compared to the actual fun of the game. If you want to see how well you’d do playing this game, see if you can find other phrases on the dice shown here. What about “papercut”? “Cut time”? “Playing with fire”? “Happy hour”? “Clock face”? “Two-faced”? “Time flies”?…

August 5, 2009

Video Game Review – Super Mario Galaxy

Filed under: Video Game Reviews,Video Games — Tags: , — Screenhog @ 8:33 pm

By now, most everyone who knows video games knows Mario, and those that own a Wii are probably already aware of Super Mario Galaxy, a game that burst onto the scene in late 2007. As of this writing, it has already sold over 8 million copies, and my reviewing the game is not likely to cause much of a bump in sales. However, that doesn’t stop me from wanting to review it anyway, because it is one of the few video games ever made that I could call perfect.

Two years ago, when I heard that Mario Galaxy was coming, I decided that it might be wise for me to get used to playing Mario games in 3D, as I’d never played classics like Mario 64. So, I picked up a copy of the Gamecube game Super Mario Sunshine – which, of course, plays on the Wii – and started playing. I soon discovered that I was not particularly good at the game… I had a difficult time mastering the controls, and there were too many precision jumps for me to master. Less than a tenth of the way through the game, I put the game away, hoping that Super Mario Galaxy would not be as difficult for me.

Fortunately, it is not. The controls are perfect, and the spin ability while jumping means that, if I’m about to land somewhere that I wasn’t intending to, I have a second chance before landing to correct my jump and land properly, which was much easier to master than Mario Sunshine’s F.L.U.D.D. system.
(click to read the rest of this post…)

August 3, 2009

Screenhog in 3D

Filed under: 3D — Screenhog @ 2:09 pm

Over the last few months, I’ve been checking out 3D again. I’ve been trained in programs like 3D Studio Max and Softimage XSI, but haven’t pursued them much on my own time due to the expense of the programs. Then, I found out about Blender, an Open Source 3D program that’s absolutely free.

Of course, I couldn’t go very long in a new program without trying to make Screenhog in it, so here he is:

I’m fairly impressed with Blender as a program, although it runs counter-intuitive to most 3D packages. The first few times I tried making anything in it were very frustrating, and it was only after finding this site that I really was able to start understanding how the program worked.

I recommend Blender for anyone who wants to try their hand at 3D, with the warning that it takes a lot of practice and fine-tuning to make anything worth showing other people.

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