Category Archives: Animated Gifs

Animated Gifs

Ah the early days of the web. Animation on the web like film from the 1920s – a series of images. Making these was something I used to do regularly at work…seems so long ago. Animated gifs.

An animated gif was the first animated graphic on the web. Simple but effective loop of a few images – that you could control the size and length of each image. Back then, there was a 10 kb.

Here’s one I made recently at a class:

Mars Horodyski
Pursuit OCR
Joanne Galligan’s Bar Fit class
Loop set to: forever

Made in Photoshop

Thank you internet





:: retro ::

Stay-cation: A week of silly fun and getting ‘er done

This past week, I have been on a stay-cation. Like a vacation without vacating. Just staying home, going out of the city for a day or two, cooking and walking the dog.

In preparation, I made a list of what I wanted to get done.  Which I typically don’t do, since I view a “to do” list as a “didn’t do” list, that makes me feel angry that I didn’t do it. But this time, I realized it could be a  “still have time to do” list.

After a very busy spring that included producing a mobile app, directing two videos, writing and performing in a theatre show at the Toronto Fringe Festival, I had time for stuff I meant to do and have been putting off since January. An entire week! The list included with visiting old friends, writing, cleaning the closets. Here’s what I learned from this week:

1. That list of things I’ll do when I have time is long. Longer than a week. Write a novel? Finish a screenplay? Create an exercise routine that accounts for my damaged knee.

2. Many things were done. Highlights from my list included getting a massage, on the deck and finishing a spec script for Parks and Recreation (tons of fun!).

3. Lists should include fun. Adding things like  falling asleep in a deck chair  made me enjoy the list (a first!).

4. Getting things knocked off the list gave me momentum. The “one day, this will get done” has been replaced by “I did it.”

5. Time stretches when you honour every minute. Realizing that I have lots of time to do things and not wasting time makes me happy.

6. Silly diversions are important. Currently, I’m making a time lapse video of oyster mushrooms that are growing from a kit in the kitchen. They are growing really fast – I’m sure of it. Now, I’m finding out and I’m giddy just thinking about it.

7. The list is not a list of failures. It’s just a list. Funny that I can make lists for my work projects but not for my life. Until this stay-cation.

Mostly, I got to reflect on my life, where I’m going, what I’m doing.This was the biggest gift of all because I don’t often take time to do that.

And not rush around. Just get up and decide – dog park or garden centre this morning? What a luxury. That’s all there is for life – the beauty of every moment, and I’ve found it again.



Why Facebook fails me

There were a lot of changes trying to “monetize” Facebook that came out since the IPO. Selling shares to people means you have to show that you are doing things to make money. I get it, it’s fine. Just try not to suck while doing it.

Facebook, I’m sorry, you have been my friend, ally and helpful network but you are starting to super-suck. This is a recent list of why. And I’m saying this as a friend. Someone who does care that you stick around and have a decent  go of it.

First grievance – stop trying to get me to buy things for friends on their birthdays. It’s tacky. If they are friends I see, I will buy them a gift if I’m going to their birthday party. And they would do the same for me. I had to give kudos to a friend for ignoring your very tacky request. She felt guilty. Maybe you think a guilty buck is still buck. But go easy on it – maybe just offer it to my friends who are in a different city that I converse with. Not everyone. That’s dumb.

Secondly, stop showing crappy ads. You need money and I want you to have some. With a billion people on the network, you can’t get some primo ads – things I might have heard of? I know – it’s self serve ad inventory. I have used it myself. But come on! The odd ads with weird pictures and stranger ad copy is costing you your reputation. Trust me on this one.

Thirdly, when creating events that I invite my friends to –  removing the ability to message all my guests at events and parties is stupid. Plus, thanks for not warning me. That’s like the phone company removing my ability to make a phone call. WTF, dudes? I’m perhaps more ticked since  I was having a party and planned to remind the guests closer to the date. Many said yes three weeks ago. I couldn’t do that, because you’ve removed the “message all guests” function. You could have left me the option to AT LEAST message the people that said they were coming. This isn’t about security or privacy (see final point below). But no.  The only thing you have now is your “promoted” ads. I get you need to make money. I’m supposed to put an ad on the side column for my friends to see. Sorry, but they mostly ignore them, and they will not realize it’s my event!

Finally, thanks for giving all my personal information to the American government. I hope they enjoyed my pithy posts about my dog, my personal opinions on my friends’ causes and the many “in” jokes. Please have them call me if they have any questions or need further explanation. Hope you are making some cash from that at least.

Generally, stop taking away all the things that people want and replacing them with attempts at making money. The value is there – in our connections to each other. No one wants you to go away.

Just stop taking away the functions that people use. You have stats on this, right?


Beauty and Your Job

I have certainly been one to worry about being pretty enough, thin enough and confident enough. It affects me sometimes. But mostly in the area of romance and dating. But wait, there’s a whole new way it should affect me, apparently.

It’s been irking me since seeing one of the Dove ads. This is the one with the sketch artist. A woman at the end, while realizing she’s more beautiful than she thinks, says “[Beauty] impacts the choices and friends we make, the jobs we apply for…”

Hold the fort, people! The jobs? I have never thought I needed to beautiful for a job. Okay, a model, perhaps. But an engineer? I would create this bridge but then I looked in the mirror…and I just can’t do it!

Or, my lack of beauty will make me a bad surgeon? For crying out loud, they wear masks! This is part of the problem they are trying to solve, here. Or is it? Should I really believe that my looks are being judged by my friends?

Plus, if this is true, someone should have a chat with a lot of people! There are  CEOs, professors, neurosurgeons, journalists, politicians….working away and they are far too ugly for their jobs! They’re ugging it up and they don’t even know it. Someone needs to tell them. Anyone up for the task?

A good day for Maggie

Maggie, my most excellent dog, had a wonderful pre-birthday celebration with my family. In her usual fashion, she stared down anyone who was eating. Her version of begging is actually silent. She’s all eyes. The eyes of hope and alertness. She sits quietly. And waits. For she knows, patience is rewarded.

I have a big immediate family, so along with my parents, four sisters, my friend Wanda, one sister’s fiancé, my other sister’s husband  and a six year old niece – there was much food and merriment. And, as with any family gathering, food will fall. And Maggie is there. No broom or vacuum required. She is there to help out. It’s only fair.

Today, she got a bone – that was on purpose. We don’t drop bones on the ground in my family. But after that, the beautiful accidents started.

First, cheese fell.  Then, popcorn. Two cheese slices were the currency of the six year old teaching her new tricks. I’m sure she found some other things that I didn’t see fall. She was content.

Now, she’s sleeping and snoring. The gurgling in her stomach is noisy. Loud, burbly digestion sounds in between the snores of her sleeping. The sound of a dog who has eaten a lot of people food – and not health options either. The snacky people food.

It was a birthday party, after all. Not known for the healthy options. Perhaps my stomach will start gurgling, too. So far nothing, but the night is young.

The palatial home of Maggie Magoo.
The palatial home of Maggie Magoo.
Maggie's excellent bed
Maggie’s excellent sleepquarters

Dear Internet…

Here are some general comments and questions I have of you:

– why are you so mad?

– why are we falling off discussion topics so quickly?

– why are couches so expensive?





I always thought it odd that people said they got panic attacks. That they admitted it, because it takes openness to ‘fess up. I didn’t think I knew what one was – but I was just in denial. For fear they’d creep up on me and steal my breath. Bastards.

I realized I’d had them before…when I’m really afraid of something abstract – like how big the universe actually is or being dropped into a bottomless pit and never landing –  ever. I start breathing hard, feel really frantic and get a wicked stomach ache. Mostly I walk quickly in multiple directions, trying to figure out where to go. Except that I’m trying to get away from my own brain. Which isn’t possible while living, I think. Except for an out of body experience. And those are hard to summon.

But I have a fear of eternity (its abstract length as well as living that long), burning in hell (thanks catholic upbringing) ..and never losing that last 5 pounds. The final one just makes me annoyed, for the record. I only panic about large abstract things.

Wow – I have lived my whole life having no idea that I’ve been trying to avoid summoning a panic. Like if I admit it, I’d start getting them regularly. At present, I can keep them at bay.

This epiphany was brought to me by being up all night worrying about something else. Thanks, life.