OMG.

Jul. 1st, 2010 12:56 pm
wombat1138: (Simpsonized)
I hadn't previously heard about the live-action "Space Battleship Yamato" project whose trailer was linked from this post at [livejournal.com profile] racebending, so my first horrible thought was that Hollywood had actually picked up the heinous Space Cruiser Arizona adaptation.

beads

May. 26th, 2010 12:15 pm
wombat1138: (narbat)
clickable for description:

wired

Apr. 7th, 2010 01:19 pm
wombat1138: (narbat)
Spent yesterday afternoon experimenting w/ wirewrapping. Conclusion: I am still really bad at following pre-set directions, but at least I finally figured out an elementary freeform style for myself.

wombat1138: (Default)
Here, via a commenter link at Making Light. My parents have also sent me some photos from inside the Beltway, including an impressive sculptural edifice on top on one of their garden trellises-- the narrow snowstacks on the individual crossbeams eventually joined up (I wonder if there are/were Gothic arches underneath?) into a formation vaguely resembling the Sydney Opera House.

Meanwhile, here in the Bay Area, the crabapple trees in our parking lot have resumed their attempts to bloom. They put out a few pink buds last month, but stopped when a week of heavy rain blotted them out-- and also partially uprooted the streetlight in their midst, causing it to lean into them at a 30-degree angle. The adjacent parking space was yellow-taped off for two weeks, which was worrisome since my space is the next one over, but the streetlight's posture has finally been restored-- the work crew may've been waiting for the ground to dry out so they wouldn't be trying to lay a new concrete base (or whatever it's rooted in) into soft mud.
wombat1138: (narbat)
Rock-crystal magatama pendant with Czech glass: matte-aurora crystal skulls and smooth rounds, matte rose/green uranium-glass octahedra, aurora crystal E-beads, bitty silver-lined seedbeads. Total length ~25".

In the context of the Czech glass, "crystal" just means that it's colorless and clear, not that it's lead crystal-- it's the naming convention and there isn't really a better alternate term.

@_@x

Nov. 2nd, 2009 10:05 pm
wombat1138: (marker sketch)
Having succumbed to a combination of persistently window-shopping colored pencils and the imminent expiration of a few cents of eBay bucks (a trial bonus program), I have bought some mechanical pencils with refillable colored leads for no good reason.

(...well, technically I've been using colored pencils in a very simplistic way to chart out my daily activities, which doesn't really require many colors; for the past month or three, I've been using a mini-set of 12 little conventional colored pencils that fit (with a sharpener and eraser) into a boxlet about the size of a deck of cards. However, I've really only been using 6 of the colors (and have virtuously resisted the urge to buy larger sets to get more contrast), and have been anticipatorily worrying about having to replace just those colors once they're sharpened down to unusable nubs.)

In the local stores, I'd been eyeing the Crayola Twistable colored mechanical pencils, but Crayola doesn't seem to offer refills, which rather misses a main point of mechanical pencils IMHO. More recently (i.e., a few hours ago when I found it online), I was considering the Pentel PH158, which is a single pencil that can carry 8 different colors of 2mm leads (Pentel actually has 12 colors of 2mm refills, including black), but decided that the barrel would probably be uncomfortably large for me to use.

So I'm now waiting for a whole 8-piece set of the Pilot Color Eno 0.7mm plus eight refill tubes (Pilot doesn't list them on their US site, but they're available through JetPens and sundry eBay sellers). On reflection, the "soft blue" member of the set probably won't be that useful to me, but oh well.

On a slightly different note, I was somewhat tempted by the Marvy Color Tricks mechanical pencil, which produces that trippy multichromatic effect you get from a single lead subsectored into red, blue, and green (they do have refill leads), but couldn't quite convince myself to get one despite their extreme affordability. Alas.

Brimstone

Oct. 8th, 2009 07:08 pm
wombat1138: (narbat)


Uranium/cadmium-glass bracelet. Nwahahah.
wombat1138: (narbat)
Semi-randomly came up with this last night; haven't completely tied it off yet because I'm not sure what to do with it. (It's fairly huge-- ~2" across and 1.5" high-- and heavy because all of the beads are glass.) I'm not completely happy with the methodology that I used, which seems as if it could be optimized... will probably try some other versions based on the same general principle, but with a different colors and component shapes. cut for huge pic )
wombat1138: (narbat)

The key chromophore responsible for the fluorescence is allegedly cadmium sulfide. Since finding this goblet, I've found a few Czech glass beads that seem to be made of the same stuff, but so far I haven't spotted any obvious pointers from my previous attempts to data-mine the Czech glassmakers' color-coding system wrt uranium glass-- and even in the strand that I found at Global Beads down in Mountain View, there are several distinctly different levels of fluorescence brightness despite all of the beads looking identical under normal viewing conditions. I suppose that's not too surprising, considering the difference just between the inside (middle image, UV light from top) and outside (rightmost image, UV light near bottom) of the goblet.
wombat1138: (narbat)
Deliberately scouted out the yellow "jade" beads along the right at the gem show this weekend; the yellow jade magatama in the middle are nephrite from a commissioned factory run some years ago, and the arc of beads along the left are various colors of uranium glass:


Same beads under near-UV light. Note the lime-green fluorescent glow from all of the beads. The magatama are picking up some reflections from their surroundings, but do not actually glow on their own:


The yellow "jade" beads are almost certainly a uranium-based glass or ceramic. As counterexamples, there were numerous other tables (and even some different strands at the same tables these came from) with otherwise identical-looking and identically-priced beads without the green glow. Which doesn't nec'ly mean that those were made of actual stone either, but hey.
wombat1138: (narbat)
Tentative identifications courtesy of the eBay pottery/glass discussion board. I really don't know anything about glassware morphology; these are just pieces I've semi-randomly picked up from local thrift stores with the help of a bitty UV keychain.

Slightly translucent vaseline-yellow molded fan vase, ~1900s British? Plain circular base, ruffled triangular body ~1"x 4" at top. Probably from the Stourbridge Valley region, possibly by the Richardson glassworks.


Rolled-edge console bowl/dish, transparent green with blueish undertones and pressed pseudo-crackled pattern. Total diameter ~11". Shape/pattern details apparently inconsistent w/ LE Smith's "By Cracky" series or Imperial's "Soda Gold"/"Spider Web"/"Tree of Life"; possible attribution to McKee glassworks (no pattern name yet)?
wombat1138: (narbat)

(sunlight) neo-alex faceted rounds and neo-orchid centerpiece bits: purple; Swarovski cantaloupe bicones: reddish-grey; uranium glass: various pastels (small aqua rounds, frosted green/pink octahedra, seafoam-givre triangles and centerpiece dagger drop).


(incandescent) neo-alex and neo-orchid: purple; Swarovski: pale red; uranium glass: various pastels.


(fluorescent) neo-alex: ice-blue; neo-orchid: purple; Swarovski: green; uranium glass: various pastels.


(near-UV LED) uranium glass: lime-green glow; everything else: dark, except for random reflections.


Total length 19", Czech glass + Swarovski lead crystal on GSP, sterling silver endcaps/clasp.

wombat1138: (spot)
green fluorite (indigo glow) and uranium glass (green glow):photocut )

uranium glass (green glow) and manganese glass (peach glow); a few pieces of green fluorite are also slightly visible at the upper left:photocut )
wombat1138: (spot)
Well hey-- I appear to have even more glowy stuff than I thought I did. A question from eBay made me start poking around in my bead stash with both UV LEDs, and it appears that in the presence of relatively narrow-band near UV w/ minimal spillover into the visible range, manganese glass has a very faint green glow. It's not nearly as spectacular as the usual uranium-glass glow, and it requires complete darkness and a black background (and optimally a fairly pale, transparent shade of purple). But it does have some glow on.

Which means now I have to buy more beads again argh. But at least I finally located the camera again, so I've been slowly writing up new listings in between attempting to use some of my recent acquisitions from the local bead show... although the latter effort keeps getting very literally quashed by Spot coming to blissfully lie down smack in the middle of my beadage layout :b
wombat1138: (marker sketch)
At some point on a trip to Canada, I snapped up a cartridge-based Pentel brush pen but've never actually used it or even loaded a cartridge into the brush. Therefore, I have absolutely no excuse to buy another brush pen... except that I've just found out about one that has a converter cartridge that can be refilled with bottled ink, instead of needing to buy entire new cartridges for every refill.

Not only that, but it's ON SALE-- at least at the website I'm looking at in another window and no I will not tell you the domain. It's for your own good. Trust me. But if you must know, the product/brand name is the "Sailor Profit" brush pen.

*unwisely clicks on another page of that website* aaaaaaaaaaagh they have bottles of fountain-pen ink in 6.834 jillion colors (including inks in bright highlighter neons and even an ultraviolet "invisible" ink) and some bottles include a free pen which appears to've been modified into a direct dropper-fill reservoir with an O-ring seal.

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