#100 Milestones & Goals

100 Milestones & Goals

 #100 Milestones & Goals
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We did it! We hit the 100 mark! 

Thanks to you, ampersand fan & loyal subscriber, AmperArt #100, Milestones & Goals, is the one-hundredth issue of an AmperArt poster, for which my goal has been one per month since this project began in June, 2011. 

I have issued, without fail, one AmperArt piece per month (even if it meant stretching the month to the last hour in a remote time zone that hadn’t yet reached midnight, such as Baker Island & Howland Island, tiny outlying islands of the US).

Until now.

Ironic, isn’t it?

Ironically, I missed the deadline on this milestone achievement, the one-hundredth creation of AmperArt, Milestones & Goals. This was to be issued during April, 2017. It never made it. 

Why? Because I could not come up with an appropriate title for the theme of “one hundred.” Should be easy, right? A big, important number like that?

On the other hand, I’ve had #101 in the works for months. That one’s easy: black spots all over a white background, alluding to one of my favorite movies of all time, especially for the snappy pencil-drawn stylized effect—and the first to use the Xerox process for animation which gave it that distinctive style.

Isn’t 100 supposed to be an important number?

A title for #101 is easy. But #100? I figured there would have been a surplus of phrases, idioms, themes, ideas that allude to the number 100. But Google was practically dry. There’s the 100th Anniversary stone, the diamond. And the anniversary color, purple (not my favorite color; can’t use that). There are plenty of news stories about 100k marathons. But nothing all that significant about the number 100 itself. I thought & thought & thought, but just could not come up with anything. 

April 30, 2017 came & went, and the string of one AmperArt per month was broken. Frantically, I tried to think of other titles to celebrate the 100th issue: Grin & Bear It, Deadlines & Quotas (that wouldn’t do—I missed the deadline), Day Late & Dollar Short, Slow & Steady, Congratulate & Celebrate…on & on. 

Finally, I had to rely on the philosophies of Live & Let Live as well as Patience & Determination; just let it go until I come up with the appropriate title. I’ll issue two pieces in May.

Finally, a milestone

Yesterday I hit on the word “milestone” and realized that would make a nice title. Not about the number 100, but about an important milestone. So, what to pair that up with? Milestones & Achievements? Milestones & Deadlines? (After all, it was each monthly deadline that kept me on track to achieve this milestone, even though in the course of most projects & business teachings it’s the milestones that lead to meeting the deadline.)

I had Milestones & Deadlines all set to go, when I came across the phrase “goals & milestones.” That sounds sweeter to most people than “deadlines.” And it’s really what I am trying to accomplish: my goal is to keep churning out one AmperArt per month (okay, on average) until I’m dead. So, I guess “deadline” would be meaningful afterall, but I chose to rewrite the title as “Milestones & Goals.” (Goals & Milestones makes more sense, but it sounds weird & looks weirder.) Finally, here’s the April 2017 AmperArt, #100 Milestones & Goals…in May.

Our little secret

I feel defeated about missing the deadline on such a milestone piece, and I hate to be dishonest. So here’s the deal: You, my dear AmperFans, are privy to the truth. But between you & me, no one else has to know that I blew it. It’s just easier to continue boasting “I’ve issued one edition per month since the very first” than confessing “I’ve issued one edition per month since the very first except I missed the deadline for the one-hundredth which was such a milestone piece I feel like a worthless piece of crap.” Or maybe I’ll just admit I’m human. We’ll see how it goes.

 Please comment here.

Why I love Photoshop

Reviewing several photos for Milestones & Goals, I was focused on some sort of rock or boulder…until I saw this beautiful old wood post to which was attached a modern sign, against a gorgeous background. The blue of the sign is my favorite color blue, a cross between cyan, cerulean, turquoise & my all-time favorite, Crayola Blue-Green. So that one got downloaded (and paid for, by the way). I guess it’s also significant that I chose this image to represent Milestones & Goals, as I used to own a sign company. That business was a milestone to where I am today.

I didn’t care for the dullness of the signpost, being it was backlit. Photoshop to the rescue. Here’s the before & after. I toned down the background blue haze just slightly, but really brought up the light on the post & sign:

Original photo
After retouching














You are probably criticizing the lousy “photoshopping” on the edges of the sign, right? Quite obvious that it was plastered on top of the original image, correct? Well, I thought so too—that the photographer did a half-assed job of copy & paste (no, it wasn’t me). Guess what, though—it’s the actual photo. Upon enlarging (see below) I discovered the sign is a piece of sheet metal to which a decal is pasted. With the slight border of the metal showing around the decal, it sure does look like a crude retouching job. But no, it’s real. (Click to enlarge.)

Clever one-piece sign

The final deadline.

Now that we’ve achieved this milestone of AmperArt #100, it’s onto #101, #102, and so on, creating a new piece each & every month (maybe with a little time shifting here & there) for the rest of my life…the final deadline.

 Please comment here.

chaz sez ...

Check out the new “chaz sez” blog at DesimoneDesign.com, my commercial graphic design website. It’s mostly about design, typography, printing, publishing & marketing, but on occasion I’ll divert to a sideways topic that just can’t escape my ranting & raving.

Production notes for #100 Milestones & Goals:
Original size: 12×18 inches

Programs: Adobe Photoshop
Fonts: Bank Gothic, Ebrima
Ampersand: Ebrima
Kilometer Pole Photo: © Afhunta | Dreamstime.com (modified by Chaz DeSimone)
You may repost the image. Please credit AmperArt.com.
To download a full-size high-resolution 11×17-inch poster, click on the image.

For professional graphic design, please visit Desimone Design.

Desimone? Damn good!

#50 Fifty & Fabulous

#50 Fifty & Fabulous
#50 Fifty & Fabulous
Click image to download full-size print suitable for framing or giving to that special person turning 50 — er, 30.

Chaz DeSimone’s 50th AmperArt release is appropriately titled Fifty & Fabulous.

There’s nothing all that clever in this design…the ampersand is the AmperArt logo, a modified Garamond italic, & the words are set in the AmperArt brand identity font, Helvetica.

What is special, though, is you—for taking a look at each of my portrayals of “the ampersand as fun & fabulous art” every month.

Whether you’ve recently subscribed or have seen all 50 from the start, thank you for joining our community of ampersand afficianados & thank you for mentioning AmperArt to your friends who are fans of the ampersand just like we are.

Fifty & Fabulous is usually heard around the time people are nearing the half-century mark in their lives. (Of course, we don’t see them as “old,” today’s 50 being the new 30.) So it might be a nice & simple birthday gesture to frame a print or make a card for the Birthday Boy or Girl featuring the new Fifty & Fabulous AmperArt design.

FREE 11X17 ART POSTER: Download to print a POSTER here. It’s an impressive 11×17 inches, easily printed at a copy or office supplies store. Same size poster frames are readily available, too.

FREE 50TH BIRTHDAY/ANNIVERSARY GREETING CARD: Download to make a CUSTOM GREETING CARD here. Prints on standard letter-size paper or card. For best presentation, print at highest quality on photo card stock. (The card does not mention the word “birthday” so it can be used for any 50th celebration. The inside is blank.)

Look at these ideas: Framing & Displaying Your AmperArt Print

Original dimensions: 20″ x 30″
Program: Illustrator, Photoshop
Fonts: Helvetica, Garamond (modified as AmperArt logo)
Background: all-free-download.com

Thanks for subscribing to AmperArt. Please invite your ampersand-fan friends & colleagues to subscribe–tell them it’s fabulous & free.