As you know, I’ve got the design bug.
I’ve been teaching myself the ins and outs of Adobe Illustrator and Photoshop.
People tell me I have talent and a good eye for composition. And by people, I mean the pros that have seen my work.
If I say so myself, I’ve made some pretty illustrations.
But I’ve hit a wall.
One could say that an artist is as good as their tools. And sadly, my poor old laptop, as awesome as it is, can’t handle the requirements of Adobe. Add more than five layers to the artwork and wham, it crashes. (Help me get a new one)
This laptop has served me well. But the time has come for it to get an honourary retirement and move to Florida (or wherever retired laptops go to enjoy their last years in peace and happiness). Continue reading
Today, June 8, 2017 the world celebrates World Oceans Day*. Continue reading
I’ve been meaning to write this post for at least four years, if not more.
Of course, there is always something else that requires my attention… Blah, blah blah (insert image of Dracula here). Plus I’ve had nothing but problems and bad luck when it comes to Internet access since I moved to Windsor, which doesn’t help at all.
But! Today’s the day, I guess.
The subject is both a musing and a pet peeve of mine. HUGE (yes, all caps, bold and italics. It is that bad) pet peeve: the use of women-pertaining words as insults.
Early on in my journey of unlearning all the sexist crap imbued in me by the patriarchal society I grew in, I realized that most insult words in all the languages I know (can’t speak for the ones I don’t know) have to do with woman related stuff.
How do you insult a woman? You call her a whore, a bitch, a slut.
How do you insult a man? Do you call him a man-whore, a dog or slut too? Of course not. You use a female body part -pussy, cunt, twat (the outstanding exception being dick or any dick-related word). But if you really want to drive the point, then you call him a son of a bitch. A motherfucker. Never a fatherfucker, no. Oh no. The worse thing you can call a man in English is a motherfucker (the absolute worst thing you can call a man in Spanish is hijo de puta which means son of a whore). Have you ever stop to think why this is?
Let’s go back to the first kind of insults for a moment. Twat. Cunt. Douchebag (I particularly bloody despise this one). For millennia, women have been told their vaginas are dirty, smelly, disgusting. In the last century they were even told they should wash their vaginas to try and keep them reasonably clean. So they invented those douche contraptions (douche meaning something of a shower), composed of a bag to hold the rinsing solution and a dildo-looking hand shower that is to be inserted in the vagina in a order to wash it, connected to the bag by a small hose. That is what people use as an insult. Incidentally, it find it ironic that people -in their ignorance- use the bag part as the insult proper and not the dildo-looking part. Hilarious. Only that it is not.
Now, I ask: Why would anyone in their right minds use a female body part (or a device used for -arguably- feminine hygiene) to insult someone else?
I’ll tell you why. Because we women are though lowly, unclean, debased, unworthy. Especially those parts of us involved in reproduction. Or *gasp* sexuality/pleasure. Thus it follows that the best way to insult anyone is to compare them to a filthy woman’s part. Capisce?
Furthermore, a woman who dares to enjoy her sexuality is a whore, a slut. Something undesirable. So much, it can be successfully used as an insult. It is bad enough for a woman to be called a whore* . But when you tell a man his mother is one… oh, boy; all hell breaks loose. Do not dare question the purity of his mother. If men could, they would all be borne by a virgin.
Think about it. Sleep on it.
And most importantly please, I beg of you, stop using swear/insult words that perpetuate patriarchal cultures.
* Bitch being initially the same thing, as bitches -females dogs- were the ultimate representation of a female that sleeps around. That however has somewhat changed and nowadays bitch is understood more as a bossy, unreasonable or downright malevolent woman; although “Son of a bitch” persists as an insult for a man.
I’m alive. I’m well. Like, really well.
I was not for the longest time. But I am now.
I have a lot to say but every time I try, it all comes like water from a dam when the dam wall collapse at once.
So for the time being, I’ll leave you with something I made for Bell’s Lets Talk Day two days ago:
On the eve of the most important day in Colombian history, very few people outside the country are talking about the plebiscite that will happen on Sunday, October 2, 2016.
In terms of the consequences to the country and its citizens, to me it is as momentous as the Brexit referendum or the US presidential election. It seems like someone agrees with me on that one too.
One day a few months ago, my son called. There was much joy in his voice. He told me the government of Colombia and the FARC had finally reached an agreement! The long process of the peace talks was bearing fruits, finally. There was much hope.
On September 27, 2016 the agreement was officially signed with a pen made from a bullet. It’s the end of a 52 year old armed conflict… If Colombians manage to put aside their pain, their frustrations, their desire for revenge and manage to raise from so much suffering as a nation willing build the peaceful country we all dream of.
But things are never easy. And there are many who are not happy with peace. Those who profit from war. Those who benefit from discord and fear. The ruling class. The ones born with a silver spoon in their mouth, lead by former president Alvaro Uribe. It is not in his best interest that peace exists in Colombia. He, who should be facing an International Tribunal for crimes against humanity, dares to say that Colombia has not known war.
I rarely speak about my giftedness.
Mostly because very early on, I learned that being smart makes you widely unliked. But also because talking about how smart you are is considered unbecoming. It either shows a lack modesty or a desire to brag. Actually, they are both sides of the same coin. So both.
I always knew I was smart. Smarter than everybody I knew.
What I didn’t know, was how smart I really was.
For several reasons.
One, at the time I was going through elementary, middle and high school in that little Colombian town of mine, measuring IQs wasn’t a thing. I am sure the thought never occurred to any of my teachers. Continue reading
2016 is a leap year.
That means the June Solstice comes a day early this year.
Now -in case you forget- I was born on the June Solstice, which occurred on June 21 on the year I was born.
However, since today is the June Solstice, and since I was born both on the June Solstice and on June 21, I declare I shall have a two-day birthday celebration this year!
And for those of you in the Southern hemisphere, Happy Winter Solstice. Please know I am very jealous of you and I’d trade places with you in a heartbeat if I could.
And Happy Birthday to me! :)
Source: May is Mental Health Month
I am so excited that I finally have a way to get these ideas of mine out of my mind and express them in a graphic way*. What is a wonderful feeling.
Wish I had taken up on Illustrator years ago instead of letting it intimidate me.
I still don’t know how to use every tool in the app but my, the things I can already do! Sometimes it truly feels like “accio illustration” and there it is.
So, me being me, I had to make something for May the fourth. Behold and be amazed… no, just kidding. Just behold.