While ‘yer waitin’ fer the train… 

Miss High Haughty, Queen of all Tuxedos


Miss fuzzy cat. Every once in a while I look out for a new way to render her magnificent shagginess.

Spinpadgrip arrives.

Took about a week from the time I ordered it online. Remarkably light. And the perfect solution to holding the iPad in one hand while you are drawing with the other and no more two-thumbed typing mistakes because I can hold the iPad in my left hand and type with my right.

Instructions on the back. Straightforward.

Stick it on and yer good to go. It felt comfortable and right. Feels very secure.

I love it so far And this is not a commercial, and this is not an affiliate link, and here is the web site: http://spinpadgrip.eu/en/

Update June 22 2017. I am so terribly deeply dissappointed. The sticky pad has completely lost it’s grip. No tack. Doesn’t stick to ANYTHING anymore. Beautiful effective useful product wont even work as a doorstop. :-(

A retro-future BRT solution cartoon


Man, that one took a while. The idea was percolating since the abandonment of the tunnel option from city council. Back burner and simmer, and an image will arrive from somewhere. A picture of the OddFellows Hall, demolished long ago prompted the retro-future imagery. Then some strange old images of old vehicles and imagined transportation showed up.

Waiting is sometimes the solution. And even if the solution we’re getting is the solution we should have had decades ago, it will be a while before we get around to actually doing anything, so meanwhile The Arctic melts, the lakes fill up, The Thames overflows, and there you go.

Now really, you don’t have to spend two weeks drawing a cartoon. I have the time to waste. You don’t. So draw a cartoon about London Ont, and submit it to LondOntLife

Merle Tingley. 1922-2017

Teapot at the rest stop. 

It’s bike theft season. Tricks and tips.

Warning: It’s bike theft season. I just watched a guy ride up to the fence where most of the bikes from our building are locked. He scouted the bikes, took cell snaps of the expensive bikes and did a text. This is how a made to order bike theft ring works. When he saw me watching he turned his back and quickly rode away. Nothing works 100% to stop a determined thief but start with good locks. I say locks plural. A couple of summers ago several bikes were stolen from this same fence. Most only had a cable lock or one very cheap u-lock. Thieves are in hurry, the harder you make it to steal, the more likely they will skip your bike. Locks can be expensive but weigh that against the cost of your bike.

PS: One day I looked up to see a guy loading two bikes into the trunk a cab. Just as I realized he did not live here, he jumped in and the cab drove away with 2 stolen bikes dangling from the trunk. Broad daylight. Called a cab.

PS: One day I looked up and saw a strange car parked in one of the tenant designated spaces. The car door was open and I saw a guy working on a bike. It took second to realize that he was stealing the back wheel with an expensive gear system. I banged on the window and grabbed my camera. He ran for the car and they sped away, leaving the bike half-disassembled.

PS: I was out for bike ride. I stopped at a corner store to buy a drink. I u-locked my bike to a pole. I stepped inside placed a drink on the counter and handed the clerk exact change. I stepped outside. My bike was still there but my u-lock was twisted. All the plastic on the stub end was broken. While I was in the store for less than 2 minutes, some one stuck a pipe over my lock and tried to break it. Just dumb luck they didn’t succeed.

From a Facebook friend, Neil Muscott’s post. Facebook makes it so damned difficult to get out of the garden, even to tweet a simple link to something worthwile. Like that would ever happen. But sometimes it does, so London, this is for you.

Hello! Yes! Proceed! Oh, I don’t know. Goodnight.

I too could run the world if you would let me.

Trying to invent the future when the past was perfectly good.

Folk continually delve into our past, now at https://www.historyjam.ca , attempt to understand what went wrong, what went right, why and where and how. This post YOU WON’T BELIEVE THESE 10 BUILDINGS LONDON’S TORN DOWN! records a few remarkable buildings we’ve lost. 

And in an inarticulate cloud of thoughts, I wonder… a couple of times in our cities renovation history, multiple story, high density downtown buildings have fallen under plans for a rebuild of the entire block. Which fails. Dundas/Talbot and Ridout has yielded a monolithic dead street courthouse and an arena. Dundas/Wellington has given us parking lots and conventional office towers, once again with ghost sidewalks and streets of people and cars going somewhere else.

Why, what, in our civic psyche drives this impulse? 

Sunny days!

Sweetened up memory from a roadside photo. Waterlogue filter and layering different results from different sources in Procreate. Photo from somewhere in Iowa? 

Fountain pens!

!*~&$! Fountain pens!

Various filters over an original drawing of Tomas Fedora Ingrami via Raphael from the ever faithful Ufizzi catalog.

Sometimes the pattern makes sense.

Seth Godin, who has closed off comments (?) posted :

“What about endogeneity?”

Ask this question often.

Several times a day, at least.

Endogeneity is a fancy term for confusing cause and effect. For not being clear about causation and correlation.

It’s one reason why smart people make so many mistakes. We think A leads to B, so more A gets more B. While A and B may have been related in the past, though, it’s not at all clear that improving A is going to do anything about B.

Yes, the correlation with cheese and bedsheets is spurious.

Everyone who argues this seems always to offer some absurd correlation that is clearly nonsense, as though it refutes the whole case. It is a logical fallacy on its own. There was sufficient correlation to the pump and cholera to shut down the pump, without knowing the cause. Try a Google search for “pump and Cholera”  or Wikipedia . Sometimes the evidence is close enough that it doesn’t matter.

Perhaps that is the contra-point he is trying to make?

We are pattern seeking intelligences. Sometimes the pattern makes sense.

Try a Google search for “pump and Cholera”  or Wikipedia

Rapid Transit? All aboard!

Out with the soft, in with the firm. 

So happy to have a bunch of new firm pencil tips. Why can’t I buy these? I would. 

So my eyes and brain hurt. Tell me why I do this, again?

The other cartoons I put up at LondOntLife were done quickly and briskly on my iPad2 Air. The Peanuts parody was another beast all together and took a good day of daylight, and few insomniacal arousals. Part of the problem was figuring out how to do things for the first time, and connect the workflows.

Deciding to dress Snoopy as The Vision, and a twitter reference to ‘watering it down’ snapped everything into place. Character references were searched on the desktop, because I needed the extra screen space to display them while I redrew the character on the iPad. (Paper by 53)

There are no suitable download-able comic page templates I could find. Maybe I didn’t look hard enough, or dig deep enough, but I needed to get drawing. Swiped a pic of a peanuts strip and copied the layout when I realized Concepts could draw cartoon panels and specific paper sizes. So for the first time, I settled into the regular shape tools and figured out the tricks to assigning line thickness. Aligning things is tricky as moving the things by mm’s requires relatively clumsy finger adjustments.

Back to Procreate, where I could import the png panels art and place the sketches. Once again, setting a fixed paper size was useful. The layers were useful. I shared out of Paper to open those images in Procreate, but the process of bringing half a dozen sketches in one at a time, and placing them one at a time with the import icons and menus in Procreate was tedious. I had never used Procreate as an inking kind of place, so finding the suitable tool was new to me also. That took some time. However manipulating and the layout of the images was quite easy. Procreate however doesn’t do lettering. And my hand lettering is miserable. I tried.

I wanted flat 4-colour style colouring for the cartoon. The fill tool in Sketches was perfect. It provided tones for every colour, and filling with fingers left loose sloppy corners and overlaps that simulated a casual registration problem on a big press that was just too fussy to fix. Found and downloaded a Schulz lettering font. Shared it to the iPad. Sketches on the iPad does letters, but doesn’t read the font. Unless I’m missing something, but I wasn’t into searching for how to do it. Sketches on the desktop does not.

Okay, so I decide to open Affinity Design for the first time :-) knowing that the cartoon panels I previously did I did in Illustrator did lettering just fine. And that was just one panel with limited dialog.  But here again I was doing something somewhat complicated for the first time in an app I wasn’t deeply familiar with. But I banged away. Lettering and balloons done.

Somehow somewhere along the way, I saved or posted low resolution copies of the image. So I went back into Affinity and made certain I was getting something suitable. Don’t know exactly what I did, whether it was in Affinity, or Photos app, once again, back on the iPad, or the WordPress app, but got a better resolution image back up on the LondontLife blog.

Then last night, Twitter decided I wasn’t a nefarious Russia hacker trying to spam everyone and released the @Londontlife Twitter. So finally, all is good.