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After Effects Wishlist

Ever since I first jumped headfirst into After Effects back in 2010, the application has gotten better and better. However, as with any piece of software that one works with on a day-to-day basis, there are always those “I really wish I could do this!” moments or “Wouldn’t it be great if Ae had this!” functionality privations. What follows is an entirely-subjective-and-likely-applicable-only-to...

Telling the Truth

In today’s Old Testament reading, we read about Jeremiah being thrown into the cistern after prophesying the doom of Jerusalem. Most of the times I have read this story my focus has been on Jeremiah. But in the reading I took note of the other characters: a Cushite named Ebed-Melek, who saved Jeremiah’s life, and Zedekiah, a cowardly king who came to a bitter end. The situation was this:...

How To Be An Art Thief

If one is involved in any sort of artistic or design related endeavor, it won’t be long before one is met with this perennial justification for lifting someone else’s work: “Good artists copy, great artists steal.” Ostensibly dripping forth from the lips of Picasso, the essence of the idea is that sometimes great art or great design (depending on which one is engaged in) will at times involve...

The No

There is a scene in the fine movie Becket where the newly ascended archbishop is made aware of how one of the barons has taken one of his priests into custody, the latter accused of debauching a girl in his parish. As the scene progresses, messengers arrive to inform Becket that the priest had tried to escape but was captured and put to death, when the law of the land was that ecclesial crimes...

A Civil Lack of Discourse

Civil discourse, I would argue, is largely dead. One could of course point to the bombast, blustering, bromides, baloney and ballyhoo that accompany any political cycle, or the chicanery, duplicity, equivocation, folderol, grandiloquence, humbuggery, inanity and jabberwocky which encrust the space like barnacles on the hull of a sunken galleon. However, that is all low-hanging fruit, and while...

The Biscuits and Gravy Review: Urban Table

If you haven’t been to Urban Table, it’s a really cool spot in Prairie Village that is great for brunch. Megan and I have been there quite a few times, usually with friends and family, and it’s always a good time. Urban Table provides gourmet takes on more traditional items; their breakfast tacos are sublime. If you ever go there, get that! They also have an interesting approach to biscuits and...

Follow Your Dreams! (Over a Cliff)

I came across this thought-provoking video from Mike Rowe about following one’s passions. The gist of the video can be summed up in a great takeaway line: Just because you’re passionate about something doesn’t mean you won’t suck at it. Be sure to watch the whole thing before going any further. The idea that Mr. Rowe is trying to convey is that oftentimes our passions (in the colloquial sense of...

So You Want to Become An Independent Designer

As I have worked at becoming an independent designer on the side for many years, I thought I had an idea of what to expect from doing it full-time. However the reality is in many respects much different, in both positive and in negative ways. Yet there’s still nothing I’d rather be doing. I’ve always thought that there is now no better time than ever before to work in design. To be...

Jesus Didn’t Hang Out With Anyone

There’s an interesting idea that has the flavor of pop theology which I often see used in the context of whatever moral topic du jour is being discussed. This notion usually runs along these lines: Well, Jesus hung out with sinners, so X… Now, “X” can be any number of different things, and while Jesus gets recruited for lots of different things, he seems especially prone to be pressed into...

The Biscuits and Gravy Review: Eggtc.

I was in the mood for some biscuits and gravy today, and so I decided to browse some reviews of various locations featuring this delectable offering. In my search I found some lists of the best places in KC to get biscuits and gravy, and my curiosity was thus duly piqued. Unfortunately, almost every one was downtown or farther north, and given the short window of time I was unsure that my...

Do You Really Want a Relationship Instead of a Religion?

One of the highly favored juxtapositions within some segments of modern American Christian thought is that of religion vs. relationship. The premise, as far as I have ever been able to divine, is that there is something about the content of religion that is somehow antithetical to the content of a relationship, specifically the “personal relationship” that is proposed between the believer and...

The Biscuits and Gravy Review: Foody’s

On a whim today we decided to hit up Foody’s and try out their biscuits and gravy. To be fair, we had been playing through a dungeon on Elder Scrolls Online and got stymied about halfway through (and, of course, it was the mage’s fault; it’s ALWAYS the mage’s fault…), and so I thought some b+g might be a good pick-me-up. I was at first a little worried that they...

Design is Not Art (And That’s a Good Thing)

When I first started in design I was a very insecure designer. I didn’t yet have much experience and was still very rough around the edges as far as my technique and skills were concerned. It was difficult to feel confident about anything that I was doing. But even deeper I always seemed to struggle with trying to justify my then nascent profession. When people would ask what I did for a living...

The Biscuits and Gravy Review: Beer Kitchen

My favorite brunch item is probably biscuits and gravy; at least one would reach that conclusion given the frequency with which I order it. And because I like this dish so much, I’ve decided to start reviewing biscuits and gravy from various restaurants and eateries as a service to the public. Such selfless devotion, I know… The first entry comes from Beer Kitchen in the Westport...

Delectable Gradient Maps

I am excited to release this fun pack of 45 gradient map presets for both After Effects and Photoshop. Perfect for creating quick duo-tone or tri-tone images for your social media needs or for just subtly adding interesting color corrections to your images. These presets are flexible and easily modifiable, so you create nearly infinite varieties of looks. Installation instructions are included in...

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