Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Picture Kaleidoscope 2/29/12

Pictures, pictures, pictures!

From Pelfusion the 30 Best Examples of Jump Photography by Ferman.

Rhea Before Titan - NASA's Pic of the Day.

The Amazing Photo Manipulation Work of Erik Johansson from Peta Pixel by Michael Zhang. Too cool!

Ripped Photo Collages That Show People In Locations Across Time from Peta Pixel by Michael Zhang. Neat idea!

My-Still Life Photography Adventure by Valerie Jardin. Making stories with still life photography.

That's it for this week. Enjoy!

P.S. This is the last week for the Zumaya Publications Thriller Kindle Sale, and specifically my novel Vassal of El! (Pictures with words! :P) FYI!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Mind Sieve 2/27/12

Yes, it's time for another exciting link overdose on Mind Sieve! Bwahahahaha!

Damsels In Distress movie preview and article at The Hollywood Reporter. Funky looking movie.

Firefly cast at SciFi Expo 2012!  I was there, but never got that close. lol. Trevor's figurines look really nice! Wait till you see Jayne's! Even has a hat. lol.

83 Animal Mummies Found At Abydos from the History Blog. Don't normally hear about animals as mummies. Cool!  (In a morbid curiosity way, not because I think it's cool they made some! :P)

Designing From Bones -  A Story Of Tragic Love from Gene Lempp. Once again proving that communication is key! Eek!

Day In The Lyfe: Castle Star In The Music Lab by Jon Huertas. The boy can sing! Nice!

Space Launch System: Future Frontier a neat little video with a peek at the future with NASA.

New Jaden Smith Image for M Night Shyamalan's After Earth by Total Film

Girl Plays Vader For Kinect Star Wars Video from The Mary Sue. This is freakin' awesome! lol. You won't see where it's going, I assure you. lol

Hitler Hears About The End of Chuck Finale. ROFL!  (Be warned! It has spoilers!)

Scientists Build The First Single Atom Computer from Mashable Tech by Stan Schroeder.

YES!!!!!  Space Battleship Yamato 2199s New Promo Video article by Anime News Network. (The preview has the original music! YES! Hope they keep it for the series!!!!!)

56 Ways to Market Your Business on Pinterest by Beth Hayden. Noooo! Not another place I'm going to be putting myself! Eek! (But since I was totally clueless on Pinterest, this was a darn nice article~!) :)

Supercharge Your Social Media Strategy By Getting Back To Basics by Stanford Smith. Dang it, I really really need a clone!!!!

That's it for this week. Enjoy!

And because I gotta - Zumaya Publications Kindle Thriller Sale is still on, so my novel Vassal of El is only $2.99! FYI! :P

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Virtual Tourist - SWTOR and Minecraft 2/26/12

Hubby's back and I had no conventions so I figured we'd be doing some Rebel playing again, but life got in the way and only got a little time to play my spy. We also had the latest updates for Minecraft installed so I snapped some shots of that. Figured I'd give everyone a little variety. :)

Glowing green ooze that's filled one entire valley due to all the fighting on Balmorra. (This planet's upload song has also been my favorite. Fits my chara so well I think of it as her theme song. :P)

Dead bug in Bug Town. That place was like being in my own Starship Trooper's movie without the heavy suits. They were everywhere!!! Mean suckers too.

Love the look of the wild flowers

Dead igua.

Sabotaged canon in mid explosion. :)

I've finally finished all I needed to do in Balmorra and the fifty tons of extra quests there. lol. I've left the planet. Wasn't sure I'd ever get done. :P

Minecraft pics. There was new stuff to see!

This is one of the randomly made villages the kids have decided to make their own. The villages now have Golems. My understanding is you get 1 for every 15 villagers. Occasionally one will have a flower and will give it to a village kid. (In-joke time!)

The new AIs for the villagers is still whacko though. That's like 80 villagers all trying to cram into one little house and then suiciding off the roof. They also love to just open and close doors. It's insane.

The golems get a little crazy too.

The kids new place. With the last two patches we lost all the stuff that had been built before so everyone is starting from scratch again. (And I'd just almost finished my house! Waaahhh!)

The new jungle areas. The trees look pretty cool.

Trying to chase down the locations for hubby and the kids, I ran across this funky peak with empty bottom. I may have found a possible place. Bwahahahaha.

I think hubby and Steve made that weird water hill.

Snow is so pretty here. Just weird when you're being rained on, take a step, and it's all snow.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Movie Review - Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance

Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance

Starring: Nicolas Cage, Violante Placido, Ciaran Hinds, Idris Elba, Johny Whitworth, Fergus Riordan, Anthony Head, Christopher Lambert, Spencer Wilding, and more.

Directed by: Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor Story by: David S Goyer Screenplay by: Scott M Gimple, Seth Hoffman, and David S Goyer Based on: The Marvel Comics Ghost Rider Original Music by: David Sardy

Premise: Johnny Blaze has been running from place to place, trying to deny the demon inside him access to the living world. When he's tracked down by an unusual, motorcycling priest, Johnny is given the first glimmer of hope that his curse could be brought to an end. But in order to get that chance, he has to help a young boy to a special sanctuary to keep him out of the Devil's hands. (Rating: PG-13)

Review: (Going to try a slightly different format this week, so please bear with me. If you like it, do let me know!)

1) Acting - Thumbs Up - Nicolas Cage was good as usual. And he did add just a little extra something during some cool transformation scenes. Enjoyed Idris Elba as Moreau. He was quirky and had just enough going where you couldn't tell if he was a good guy or a bad guy for a while. Violante Placido was convincing and Fergus Riordan was good with snark. It was swell to see Anthony Head and Christopher Lambert as well.

Ciaran Hinds always makes a great bad guy and does not disappoint. Johnny Whitworth was also fun as the unsuspecting baddie who gets a job that ends up involving more than he ever signed up for. Some good snark from him as well.

2) Special Effects - Total Thumbs Up - It's one thing to make a person look like a flaming skull with CGI, it's a whole other level to sell it to where it looks real. Special effect guys did an awesome job. A lot of the work was subtle but added up in a big way. They helped sell the effects and the story very well. Things like  the smoke trails to the hell fire, the look of coated brimstone on the Rider's clothes, the cool LOST'esque chittering sounds advertising the Rider's arrival, and the reflection of the Ghost Rider on his target's eyes as he looked into the depths of their souls were a perfect touch to name a few.

The decomposition sequences were also nicely done. The paper cutouts for the flashbacks with voice over worked well. The giant Hellbagger was too awesome.

3) Plot - Thumbs Up - Simple and convincing, with the occasional unexpected turn. No major hiccups that I saw. The only one that seemed present is actually explained but indirectly. We're left to connect the dots on our own.

Some minor changes in the background info from the first film, but not enough to give anyone much trouble.

4) Stunts - Thumbs Up - Done off and on with a combination of special effects, they came across very well. A couple really helped convince the audience they were dealing with supernatural forces while making them still look natural and real. Some nice work here.

Explosions, car chases, chains, hell fire, gun play, a nice varied platter of fun.

5) Locations/Cinematography - Thumbs Up - Mainly in Romania and Turkey, the locations gave the needed authentication for ancient prophecy, which was a major driving point of the plot. Great panning shots of the different ruins or run down industrial areas were in abundance. Excellent touch ups on the sky views for subtle hints of the forces gathering around them as the time of the prophecy came near.

There were also some lens changes which created funky effects. Add that to some inventive filming and it made for several unique moments.

Conclusion: Overall, it was a fun and fast paced film. Fans of the comics should be well pleased with this new installment. You will also never think of flamethrowers in quite the same way again. I guarantee it. lol.

Rating: 4 out of 5 (Hubby's Rating: Worth Full Price of Admission.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Picture Kaleidoscope 2/22/12

Woohoo! Just when I thought I wouldn't see any more exciting sunsets, BAM, they're back! YES!

Almost looks like the sun is melting, doesn't it?

A ton of birds. You have to look hard but there's a ton of them. (The larger sized image will really make them pop out - so click away!)

A sideways birdie shot. They were moving on me.

More birdies.

Like molten lava, no?

Lots of fun cloud formations this week.

This was at ConDFW this past weekend. Some fun stuff walked on by my table this weekend. :P Steampunk doll!

Steampunk Teddy Bear!

Steampunk Rubber Chicken! And it's a NASA Rubber Chicken to boot! Used by the local NASA Club.

The Evil Melanie Fletcher is making these super adorable dolls! This pair is Sherlock and Watson from the BBC Show. So CUTE! She does dolls and jewelry. Some of her wares are displayed as Belaurient Arts.

My buddy Patrick McGehearty told me at the con that he's running for US House of Representatives District 24!  He's super nice and he's a GEEK so he's one of US! If you live in Dallas in District 24, keep him in mind! He's fed up and wants CHANGE! Go Patrick!

Once again, had already taken bites before remembering I meant to take a pic of dinner! From the Crowne Plaza's restaurant Quineno Tower. Funky but yummy!

New View Shows Old NASA Mars Lander. (Way down in the left hand corner. Heh)

From Astronaut Nicole Scott - Beautiful Moon Rising Over Cocoa Beach.

Abstract Photos of Face That Resemble Fireworks from Michael Zhang at Peta Pixel.

New Images - Skogafoss, Iceland by Juan Paul Caponigro. 

More Portraits of Dogs Jumping Underwater by Michael Zhang at Peta Pixel.

50 Beautiful Collection of Cloud Pictures from Tripwire Magazine. They do put mine to shame! Ooooo!

Epic Action Photos of Porcelain Figures Shattering Against The Ground by Michael Zhang at Peta Pixel. Have to admit once I saw these I was amazed at how cool it looked!

P.S. Since Zumaya Publications is having their Kindle Thriller Sale, my novel Vassal of El is still on for only $2.99! Just FYI! :P
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