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📙 #010 Bugs and a Bumpy Landing
Actual pen plotting in the newsletter, of sorts. Here's the thing, a pattern, if you will, of wanting to explain all the old projects before moving on to new ones. Starting something new is always exciting, while doing all the tedious old work of wrapping up all the loose ends on an old project is very unexciting.
I'd spent most of 2022 splitting my time between tying up loose ends and doing a bunch of behind-the-scenes helping other people with their projects. Most of which is all over, which means I finally get to start making new art. A lot of the upcoming art falls into the "Digital Generative Art" category, so I'm trying to bolt on pen plotting wherever I can, so I can sneakily make those digital projects also physical 🤫
One upcoming project is a group show/exhibition thing with some other fantastic artists for (and I haven't yet mentioned this properly anywhere else - so newsletter first) Feral File: https://feralfile.com/exhibitions
We had our first group discord "show and tell" chat this past Sunday, and of course, I hadn't done anything, so that morning I quickly iterated over breaking up a grid and then throwing lines into it. The progress looked a lot like this.
And then I tried to do something, which introduced a bug I haven't even attempted to find because I liked the way it made some squares disappear. I'm still unsure of the logic behind it, but this is what it looked like.
About 30 minutes before the "show and tell" started, I decided the whole thing would look better sideways, but the moment I did that, the bug stopped working or started working even more; either way, the exciting good bug became the terribly bad bug of rubbish design. So with a few minutes to spare, I just rotated the top square 90 degrees instead to end up here.
Not of this will make it to the final show. It would feel like cheating to get everything done for a show in six months, finished on the first day, by accident.
After the meeting, I bolted on its ability to spit out SVG files that can then be pen plotted.
I'm still trying to figure out how to document the progress of the work beyond just throwing it onto Twitter, and we all know how well that may go; more on that in a moment.
For now, I've put a web page here: https://revdancatt.com/fffffrfffffl where you can see the code working and download the images and SVG files needed for pen plotting.
At some point, I need to make an official announcement about the Feral File show; I wanted to share it with you all first.
In a little more pen-plotting news, Evil Mad Scientist, the people behind the AxiDraw, released a new, stronger, longer-lasting servo that's also supposed to be quieter. Something that drew my attention because often, having the pen plotter in the background stops me from making videos because I don't want the noise to be too distracting in the final thing. Or, more often, the other way around, making videos stops me from using the pen plotter.
Either way, I made a review on YouTube; SPOILERS, it's much, much quieter!
I've spent a long time being irritated that I have to unscrew a couple of things, which for me is HARD DIY, and then screw them back in again to change the angle of the pen. "WHY?" I ask, "Why can't there be a thing where I can just easily change the pen angle without all this horrid DIY stuff??".
Totally ignoring something I see on the Evil Mad Scientist's shop page every time I go, skipping over it because I didn't register that it was precisely what I've been asking for all this time. I guess I'll be making another video soon about that.
This will be the last newsletter "powered" by "Revue from Twitter" because, yikes! In a couple of hours, I'm going to hit the "Import from Revue" button that got oh-so coincidentally added to Substack (https://substack.com). Substack seems to be all about getting people to pay for a subscription, and I'm not planning on doing that (unless it's become somehow enough for me to retire from). For the moment, I'm just assuming I can publish for free, and I haven't overlooked something basic like me having to pay a zillion pounds a month to run it.
Should any of that happen, I guess we'll go somewhere else.
Anyway, this is a heads up: for data protection reasons, you may a) get an email from substack and b) hit an "okay" button. If internet "calls to action" have taught me anything, we'll lose about half of you but get to keep all the best readers; that's probably you!
Now I'm off to press some buttons!!!
I love you all!