Monthly Archives: November 2014

Introducing Manga Studio 5

I’m still working hard to get familiar with the techniques of digital art and the features of the Manga Studio software. Here is my post from 2013 that explains a little more about what’s involved.

Anglo-Saxon Celt Creates

I just love Manga Studio 2As you might have read on my About page, I am planning to convert some of my artwork into digital form.  I also plan to create new digital pieces directly.  I would have liked to have invested in Photoshop but I couldn’t afford it.  Instead I have bought something called Manga Studio 5, which is a lot cheaper.  I also bought a (cheap) graphics tablet.  Manga Studio is a graphics tool designed for people who create manga (Japanese comics).  The picture on the left only took me a few minutes to produce.  However, there’s a steep learning curve with both Manga Studio and the graphics tablet.  Drawing with them involves a whole new form of hand-eye coordination. So far, I love using them.  It can be a little frustrating at times, like when I can’t remember how I produced a particular effect.  There are mountains of features to…

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Origami Swan

Another post from 2013. This time origami AND gardening in the same post, coz sometimes I just like to mix it up and go wild.
That was sarcasm btw. 😉 I’ve noticed that some people have a problem with my sense of humour. They find it hard to detect. I do have one. No, really, I do.

Anglo-Saxon Celt Creates

swan4This summer in Ireland has been the best since I moved here in 2000.  It is absolutely scorching.  I haven’t written a post in a while because it’s just been too hot to do very much except eat ice-cubes.  I’m posting now though because I’ve finally finished a model that I have been making for a friend.  Her totem animal is the swan so I think she will like it.  I used the video provided by a Romanian origami wizard on his blog.  Thanks Razvan.   swan2It took ages to make.  The little triangular pieces take less than a minute to fold but there are nearly 600 pieces in this model.  I’ll let you do the maths.

While I’m here I want to give you an update on the garden.  redcurrantsWe had our first harvest of redcurrants last week.  It was also our last.  😦  The blackbirds have finally figured out…

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The Exuberance of Nature


Here’s Gigi’s announcement about the book I mentioned in one of my “Death Cat” posts. When I’d finished reading “Conversations with Death”, I left the following comment “It wasn’t hard for me to finish the book quickly. It was just packed with such deep truth and raw humour that it was a healing experience that I was happy to take time for. I’m so, so sorry that it came from such pain ❤ but I'm overjoyed that it saved you and that you are sharing it so that it can help others." There is a link to Amazon in Gigi's post where you can read excerpts of the book, and I would highly recommend that you give it a try.

Rethinking Life




A Love Story

is on AMAZOM as of tonight


check it out, if you have time

(Gigi is my nickname, by the way.)

Thank you so very, very much.

YAY again!!!!

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Origami Binge Running Out of Steam

Another old (June 2013) origami post:

Anglo-Saxon Celt Creates

pinkinprogress I started two more models from the book by Meenakshi Mukerji.  The first photo shows the inside of the “whipped cream star” model when it was just over half built.  I had to use glue again.  The pieces would probably have stayed locked together better if I had made the units from bigger rectangles.  However, I wanted to see if I could make it small.whipcrmstar  The finished model (second photo) is about the size of a billiard ball.

The other model I started making (third photo) was from the same book but it was by a guest writer called Tanya Vysochina.  The model is called Lily of the Nile and is really beautiful.  Unfortunately, the instructions on how to make it are a little sketchy.  There are virtually no clues on how to put the units together into the shape of an icosahedron.  lillyinprogressAs you can see…

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Yay for the Yaybahar

This instrument, invented by Istanbul-based musician Görkem Şen, can be played in a variety of ways.  In the hands of it’s inventor it makes complex, evocative sounds.  I hope you enjoy them as much as I did.  The view out of the window is quite nice too.  🙂

The Origami Binge Continues

My second origami post (Jun 2013):

Anglo-Saxon Celt Creates

gardenJune3When I haven’t been in the garden (weeding mostly) and doing chores, I’ve been folding paper.  I’ve been feeling guilty about not spending more time in the garden though.  The sun has been shining harder and longer here in Ireland than it has done for years (dare I say within living memory).  I feel like I need to make the most of it while it’s here.  But I’m not used to it.  After a while I start turning pink and flopping around like a Dali watch.

twinboat icosahedronI’ve found a few more nice modular origami models on YouTube.   The first one, on the right, is a “twinboat icosahedron“, along with one of its units (on the right of the photo).  On the left of the photo is the supply of triangular units I have built up since my last origami post.  (Only a few thousand left to go…)…

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Coming to terms with being a nerd

Instead of playing intermission muzak I’m reblogging my old posts to fill the space while I concentrate on my latest project. Here’s my second post on this blog:

Anglo-Saxon Celt Creates

Geeks vs NerdsI know many people who love adventures.  The kind of people who get their kicks from jumping off bridges with a bungee rope attached to their ankles, scuba diving in coral reefs, hang gliding over canyons, that kind of thing.  People find adventurers interesting and admirable.  I used to feel that I ought to try to be adventurous too.  It was something that I aspired to.  If only I had the money, I could be like them too…

I went up in a glider once.   I tried to force myself into a state of awe at being up in the air with no engine.  It didn’t work.  The bang I got on the elbows when we landed cancelled out any positive feelings I had about the experience.  I pretended that I had enjoyed it but I wouldn’t bother to do it again.  At the time, I blamed my lack of…

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Transparent Pixels

PPonyTransSmlThis is really a note-to-self that may be of interest to other Manga Studio users.  I spent hours trying to figure something out that turned out to be really, really simple.  I hope I save someone (including my forgetful self in the future) hours of hair-pulling.

The way to preserve transparent pixels (such as those around the horse on the left) when saving to an output file is to use the PNG file format.  That’s it.  No mucking about with alpha channels and other such mysterious things that come up when you search for information on the Internet.

Getting Excited About Folding Paper

Since my blog is quiet at the moment I thought I would reblog a few of my early posts that you might not have seen. This one is my very first post. 😀

Anglo-Saxon Celt Creates

origamiWhen I was young someone gave me a couple of books by Robert Harbin and I fell in love with folding paper.  I’ve done it on and off over the years but this year I’ve gone on a bit of a binge.  It started in February when I revisited my favourite models from the Harbin books and tried a few new ones from a book I got for my birthday a few years ago.  My children joined in for a while and our models are shown in the photos on the right.  (Click on the pictures if you want to see them enlarged.)

I was unsure about the modular origami in the new book.  I used to be a bit of a snob about origami in the past – if you needed scissors, glue or more than one sheet of paper then it wasn’t “proper” origami.  In fact, even after…

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