#140 Love & Light

140 Love & Light
#140 Love & Light
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Happy Birthday, Diane

 

Amper­Art #140 is inspired by a gift from my friend, a real­ly cool amper­sand sculp­ture that lights up. She signs her name with the words “Love & Light” which gave this piece its title. But tru­ly, Diane is the per­son­i­fi­ca­tion of love & light. The back­ground is also inspired by her, as she is always admir­ing cloud for­ma­tions. I am issu­ing Amper­Art #140 Love & Light on Diane L. Donohue’s 60th Birth­day, August 6, 2019.

Her BIG 6‑OH is a real­ly big deal because Diane was not sup­posed to live past 58. At least that’s what the doc­tors said. More about that lat­er.

60 Smart & Strong

Diane L. Dono­hue is the cre­ator of 60 Smart & Strong, a series of pod­casts & the web­site to inspire women & men who are 60 & bet­ter to live their lives to the fullest…like Diane does.

I met Diane less than a year ago (seems I’ve known her all my life, she’s that kind of soul) at a group of aspir­ing artists & writ­ers where I was offer­ing my ser­vices pro bono which I do a cou­ple times a year. She took me up on my offer to design a logo & a web­site. Here is the orig­i­nal sketch, but before I had the chance to refine it too much, she request­ed that I keep it pret­ty much the same, as she likes things “per­fect­ly imper­fect.” 

 

Her web­site, 60s​mar​tand​strong​.com, is still being devel­oped but it is live if you want to take a look. (Please sub­scribe & you will be the first to see her series of snap­py, inspir­ing videos.) If noth­ing else you will enjoy her list of “Diane-​isms” to enlight­en & bright­en your life.

Here are just a few:

No excus­es = No regrets

Healthy Thoughts = Healthy Actions

Grat­i­tude is a mag­ic wand that turns every­thing you have…into every­thing you want.

Your bat­ter­ies are in your feet.

You’re not sweat­ing, dar­ling; you’re detox­ing!

If you want more ener­gy, eat more ener­gy foods.

I don’t diet, I just don’t buy it.

When life gets mental…you get phys­i­cal!

If it should­n’t be, it would­n’t be.

The C word

Accord­ing to the doc­tors, Diane was not going to live past August, 2018 — one year ago. But you wouldn’t know any­thing is wrong if you met this amaz­ing lady.  Always smil­ing, upbeat, laugh­ing, giv­ing, she bright­ens every space around her — kind of like that amper­sand lamp she gave me! Diane walks her talk, eat­ing healthy & con­stant­ly exer­cis­ing, teach­ing a strength & car­dio class no less, sev­er­al days a week. All while being ful­ly aware she’s liv­ing with stage 4 breast can­cer, dis­cov­ered six years ago. I have nev­er known any­one so full of love & light as Diane. She’s amaz­ing, embrac­ing life to the fullest & accept­ing death as some­thing just meant to be. 

(I refuse to believe she won’t be around anoth­er 10 or 20 years. This world needs peo­ple like her to keep them lov­ing & laugh­ing & smil­ing — and if Diane were to edit this she would add eat­ing right & exer­cis­ing!)

Happy BIG 6‑OH Diane!

Wish­ing you Love & Light for many years to come. 


 Please comment here.


chaz sez

Want more?
Rants & raves most­ly about design, some­times about the uni­verse.

An occa­sion­al bit of use­ful advice.
des​i​monedesign​.com/​c​h​a​z​-​sez

 


Production notes for #140 Love & Light:
Original size: 20x30 inches

Program: Adobe Photoshop
Font: Rockwell

Ampersand: a special gift from a special friend
Credits:
Clouds image: deposit​pho​tos​.com

Note: &” replaces “and” in most or all text, including quotations, headlines & titles.
You may repost the image & article. Please credit Amper​Art​.com.
To download a full-​size high-​resolution 11x17-​inch poster, click on the image.

An excel­lent com­pa­ny, prod­uct or ser­vice needs brand­ing & graph­ic design that is prop­er, per­fect & pro­fes­sion­al.
Please vis­it Des­i­mone Design.

Desimone? Damn good!

#142 Snow & Ice

 
142 Snow & Ice
#142 Snow & Ice
Click image to view full size or download poster for gallery-​quality printing & framing.
This is a high-​resolution pdf & may take a few minutes to download.
Find printing tips & framing ideas here.

Snow & ice & unbelievably freezing cold weather

Liv­ing in South­ern Cal­i­for­nia, I can­not com­pre­hend how cold it is in the mid­west & north­east this win­ter. Schools are closed, postal deliv­ery is halt­ed, & sad­ly there have been sev­er­al deaths relat­ed to the freez­ing weath­er & slip­pery roads.

Neither rain nor sleet…

I was giv­en a great idea from a friend, to do this piece about the unbear­ably cold weath­er & name it after the “mail­man’s mot­to”— 

Nei­ther rain, nor snow, nor sleet, nor hail shall keep the post­men from their appoint­ed rounds.

That sound­ed like a great idea until I real­ized it’s all “nors,” not “ands” — no place for an amper­sand! But the idea for the top­ic stuck, & I learned some inter­est­ing facts about that “mot­to” to relay here:

First, it’s not an offi­cial mot­to of the US Postal Ser­vice. There is, in fact, no mot­to for the agency. 

What’s more sur­pris­ing is that the orig­i­nal say­ing, “Nei­ther snow, nor rain, nor heat, nor gloom of night stays these coura­geous couri­ers from the swift com­ple­tion of their appoint­ed rounds,” was said about 2500 years ago by the Greek his­to­ri­an, Herodotus. He said this adage dur­ing the war between the Greeks & Per­sians about 500 B.C. in ref­er­ence to the Per­sian mount­ed postal couri­ers whom he observed & held in high esteem.¹

The rea­son it has become iden­ti­fied with the USPS is because back in 1896 – 97 when the New York City Gen­er­al Post Office was being designed, Mitchell Kendal, an employ­ee for the archi­tec­tur­al firm, McKim, Mead & White, came up with the idea of engrav­ing Herodotus’ say­ing all around the out­side of the building.¹

This unbear­able & unsafe weath­er has even defeat­ed the unof­fi­cial “mail­man mot­to.” Postal ser­vice has been halt­ed in the cold­est regions. I don’t blame those mail deliv­ery work­ers one bit. Mail­men & mail­women are many peo­ple’s favorite ser­vice providers. Some­times they’re the only human con­tact peo­ple have in a day. I’ve seen videos where cats wait for the mail­man, either to rub an affec­tion­ate hel­lo, or jump to the mail slot in the door to destroy the incom­ing “toys.” For all their ded­i­cat­ed ser­vice, includ­ing the friend­ly hel­los, mail deliv­er­ers deserve to not go out & endan­ger them­selves. I read that frost­bite can occur with­in min­utes with the cur­rent tem­per­a­tures. 

Baby, it’s cold outside

When I heard how ridicu­lous the flack was last Christ­mas sea­son about the lyrics in the clas­sic song “Baby, It’s Cold Out­side,” I was dumb­found­ed by how stu­pid­ly the PC Police have cen­sored just about every­thing, just because some peo­ple are too frigid­ly sen­si­tive or just plain fool­ish. It’s embar­rass­ing. We’re talk­ing about a clas­sic song here, writ­ten in 1944 with a fun lyri­cal exchange, & win­ning an Oscar in 1949.

Seems that in this MeToo move­ment, every hint of a rela­tion­ship between a man & a woman should be regard­ed as date rape. This is just too much. Get real. Espe­cial­ly when it is so cold out­side. Baby.

Here’s a good arti­cle on the top­ic, by Inc. Mag­a­zine.

Snow & ice — what’s the difference?

Here are some mete­o­rol­o­gy facts about the sub­ject of this Amper­Art piece, Snow & Ice:

Is snow a form of ice?

Snow is pre­cip­i­ta­tion in the form of ice crys­tals. It orig­i­nates in clouds when tem­per­a­tures are below the freez­ing point (0 degrees Cel­sius, or 32 degrees Fahren­heit), when water vapor in the atmos­phere con­dens­es direct­ly into ice­with­out going through the liq­uid stage.
Nation­al Snow & Ice Data Cen­ter 

Why does frozen water appear as snow in some cas­es & ice in oth­ers?

Water comes in a vari­ety of forms, or phas­es. Depend­ing on tem­per­a­ture, the three com­mon­ly found are gas (water vapor), liq­uid (liq­uid water), & sol­id (ice). Snow & ice are made of the same mate­r­i­al but snow is com­posed of crys­tals with reg­u­lar shapes, while ice forms as sheets or sol­id chunks.

The dif­fer­ence between snow & ice lies in how water freezes into its sol­id form, & here’s how that hap­pens. (Read the entire arti­cle at the Boston Globe.)
—Boston Globe

What is the tem­per­a­ture for it to snow?

The falling snow pass­es through the freez­ing lev­el into the warmer air, where it melts & changes to rain before reach­ing the ground. When the air tem­per­a­ture at the ground is less than 32 F, the pre­cip­i­ta­tion begins falling as snow from the clouds.
—Uni­ver­si­ty of Illi­nois arti­cle with illus­tra­tions

Why does snow some­times sparkle?

Some­times on a sun­ny day, fresh­ly fall­en snow may appear to sparkle or glit­ter. This hap­pens because when light hits an object light, it can be absorbed, in which case the object is heat­ed; trans­mit­ted, in which case light pass­es through the object; or reflect­ed, in which case it bounces back.
The Why Files 


Concept

The artis­tic con­cept for this piece was obvi­ous, but I did want it to be rather somber for those who are deal­ing with the cold & dan­ger­ous weath­er. One prob­lem I had to solve was whether the com­mon phrase should be “snow & ice” or “ice & snow.” I pre­fer the design of “ice & snow” but sound­ing it out, real­ized most peo­ple would prob­a­bly say “snow & ice” because it rolls off the tongue eas­i­er (as long as their tongue is not stuck to a lamp post). Also, I think you have to have snow before you have ice, right? Or is it rain? I don’t know — I con­sid­er any­thing beyond a driz­zle a full-​fledged storm.

Maybe I’ll switch the words lat­er & re-​issue the piece. What do you think? 

I was pleased with how the ice blocks stacked to form the amper­sand. The type­style for the words “snow” & “ice” — called Pel­i­can (seems it should be called Pen­guin for this piece) — offered the per­fect ice shard effect.

Hang onto this issue! Print & frame & intense­ly stare at it this sum­mer, when we’ll have record-​breaking tem­per­a­tures on the oth­er end of the scale. I could use some of those right now. Any­thing under 70 degrees is too cold for this So Cal beach bum.


Stay warm & dry.

I sincerely hope you, my ampersand friends, stay warm & safe this winter.


 Please comment here.


Production notes for #142 Snow & Ice:
Original size: 20x30 inches

Program: Adobe Photoshop
Font: Pelican

Ampersand: Chaz DeSimone, manipulated stock images
Credits:
Stock images: deposit​pho​tos​.com
Fire: giphy​.com

¹The Phrase Finder, UK
Mailman illustration: attic​pa​per​.com 1956 John Hancock Insurance ad
Other editorial credits as noted in article.
You may repost the image & article. Please credit Amper​Art​.com.
To download a full-​size high-​resolution 11x17-​inch poster, click on the image.

For pro­fes­sion­al graph­ic design, please vis­it Des­i­mone Design.

Desimone? Damn good!