THIS is Asthma

NerdHistorically asthma was a “nerd” disorder. Portrayed by kids that could not go outside because they would start wheezing and coughing, maybe even passout. The kids that had inhalers and would take a puff when they were nervous or scared. The kids who stuttered when talking, played Dungeons and Dragons, chess, ate weird foods and dreamed of playing outside.

Having visible difficulty breathing is a way to show one has asthma.  But it is not the only way.  There are many other symptoms that one cannot see.

Think about it for a moment.  Humans who forget to drink enough water suffer from headaches, urinary tract infections, kidney stones and a variety of other ailments.  What would happen if your body was not processing oxygen (and trace gases) efficiently?

head in the cloudsOne thing that happens is the loss of mental faculties.  The brain requires quite of a bit of oxygen to run correctly.  A person who is not getting the proper treatment for their asthma may have trouble thinking clearly acting distracted.

Another is loss of motivation. Why do anything that takes what little energy you might have away from you?  All that matters is … well, nothing.  Nothing takes no energy to maintain. So you get sucked into this vicious circle of nothingness (I experienced a whole year of this.  It is terrible.  I will not go back.)

Why bother making the bed?  Why bother going to work?  Why bother making friends?

whybotherMost of January I was very unmotivated.  I had trouble concentrating, planning, thinking and doing.  It took all my energy to get up, go to work, come home and prepare to repeat.  I did not have energy to create art, do chores or even sleep.  I came home and laid in bed thinking about nothing…  Why bother, I do not have the energy to do anything.

… Wait…. That sounds like Depression!

That is what I thought!

Once  I made the connection (it took forever.  So many bad days…) I started to look for articles relating to a connection between Asthma and Depression.  My handicapped brain had trouble finding many.  Most specialists seem to think that a person is Depressed and has or develops Asthma, which makes the depression worse.  Depression first, Asthma second.

Going along that logic, I am depressed and I developed asthma. I do not think so.

I developed asthma due to a poorly treated bronchial infection and moving to an area with known poor air quality.  Add my existing allergies and POOF, I have asthma.  I am sure I am not the only person that developed asthma later in life.  This was not something I was born with.

On the same note, I have never been diagnosed as depressed.  Yeah, I have bad days like everyone else.  Overall I really like living, and see the sad days as a way to make the good ones better.  I have a mind to dream things and energy to make them happen.  On a consistent basis.  None of the traditional flow and ebb common in people with depression.

Maybe a professional should look into poorly managed Asthma causing Depression.  There are articles on how asthma makes depression worse, how asthma medication can worsen or cause depression, but not much outside of that.  Maybe it is one of those “no kidding” kind of things.  So simple we know it to be true, so no one researches it.

I have gotten additional medication for my asthma.  I hope to see some results in a week or so (it takes a while, sometimes…)  The main fruits of my research are that I CAN do things to keep the depressive side affects at bay.

  1. Take my meds.  On time, every day.
  2. Exercise!  Even 20 minutes of yoga can greatly improve mood.  Most providers recommend 10 minutes of cardio to help strengthen the lungs.
  3. Friends.  Yes, get out and talk to people.  Even if you have to fake feeling great and being upbeat until you are (it works, so say the professionals.)  Ideally should have friends that understand what is going on and can deal with it.

Asthma Prevention Heros

That is about all I have on this topic today.

I really hope that it helps someone a little bit.





Feeling Colors

I am fascinated by colors and what they make us think and feel.  It amazes me that we can be influenced to think or feel a certain way about an object just because of the color that it is.  I am going to outline a few of the things I have picked up about color and what they have to do with being an artist.

Using color allows an artist to manipulate the way you think about a drawing, painting, or sculpture.  The color in a piece can change the story that is told.  A street scene that is mostly blue will make a viewer think of being alone on a cold night , whereas a street scene in oranges and yellows will make the viewer thing about a warm evening probably with friends or enjoying happy thoughts.  Color has a huge impact on how we think about things.

It is kind of hard to figure out the best way to present this information.  I think I will go down a list of common colors.  Feel free to comment if you have questions.

Color-GradientRed:  Red is a “hot” or “warm” color. Psychologically it makes people feel like they are warm, standing next to a toasty fireplace. It is usually associated with passion, recklessness and urgency. Being “hot headed” is a red head trait.  A person in a red room will get agitated and anger easily. Using red in an art piece usually denotes warmth, heat, and urgency.  Red calls to our baser instincts do DO something.

Blue: Blue is a “cold” or “cool” color.  Psychologically it make people feel cold, like they are standing outside in a snow storm.  Blue is usually associate with calm, cold, sadness and trust.  Put someone in a blue room and you will see that they get sad, cold and unmotivated.  Using blue in an art piece usually denotes cold, emotional distance or detachment and calm.  Blue calls to us to think, ponder, stare at they water and figure out the pattern in the ripples.  Blue is also a color of loyalty.

Yellow: Yellow is a “warm” color.  Psychologically it makes us happy. It is the color of sunshine and daisies.  Blonde’s have more fun because they are always happy (so says their hair color.) Yellow is also a bit weird when it comes to being a wall color for a room.  Many people that go into a yellow room will come out happy and ready for action.  Others come out agitated and paranoid.   Yellow is also an action color.

Purple: Purple is generally a “cool” color.  Purple is the color of royalty, contained passions and wealth. People react in a variety of ways to purple.  In most cases it is treated like a blue with the calm thoughts and coldness.  In other aspects it is like a red with the need for action hidden under a layer of logic.

Green: Green is another “cool” color.  It is the color of nature, money and caring.  Put a person in a green room and they will come out content.  Green is also a bit “flaky.”  Unlike blue that is unfailing and trustworthy, green has a tenancy to over compensate and can miss the mark, but it is the thought that counts, right?!

Orange: Orange is a “warm” color.  It is the color of caution, awareness and innovation.  It is used as a call to action or attention (traffic cones.)  An orange room will leave people energized and possibly a bit crazy. Mixing the passions of red with the happy of yellow can leave a person feeling unbalanced.  Companies that use orange in their logos are said to be innovative.

Brown: There generally two kinds of brown.  A warm red one and a cooler yellowish one.  A nice red brown is reminiscent of red dirt in areas such as Oklahoma.  Yellow brown is more reminiscent of tree bark like an oak tree.  Browns are considered a neutral color in most of the art world, even fashion.  Brown is a “down to earth” color, practical.  Not as imposing or threatening as black, but can hold its own.  Brown is steadfast and will never stray.

Black: Black is seen as nefarious and evil.  Black things are cloaked in shadow and hid things.  Black has an affinity for the things that make us pause in wonder.  Black is fear.  Black also indicates technology and is used a lot in tech company logos.  Black is sleek, fast, emotionless and collected.  Black is the future.

White:White is the opposite of black.  White is innocent, carefree and transparent.  White has an affinity for the things that make us remember and reminiscences about the past and more innocent times.  White is life.  White is used to indication honesty and tradition.

That should cover the basics.  Mixing colors gets you more meanings. For example, a blue and white logo would indicate loyalty, trust, transparency in cations and policy, longevity and thoughtful process change.  Something that a company like GE, Samsung or even WordPress would like you to think about their companies.

Take a look next time and think about the colors and what the company wants you to know, think, and feel about their


GreatMinds - EleanorRoosevelt

Great Minds

I finally finished!

I put it up on DeviantArt if anyone wants to download(FREE wallpaper) it or buy a magnet or mug.  It looks very nice as a computer desktop wallpaper.

Now I can work on the other two drawings.


GreatMinds - EleanorRoosevelt

Overall I am pleased with how this turned out. I hope you enjoy it.


Thoughts of a Sleepless Me : Water

Of all the places I have lived, I like the places with easy access to water.  I like water.

Water has a music that calms the soul.  In cold weather it is the sound of tiny bells tinkling down a path.  In the summer it is barely audible over the call of birds or the wind communing with the trees.  In the Spring, when the rains come, it is a loud shout, telling the world to move.  In the fall, drained of its energy, it becomes a slow wanderer, looking for a place to rest its head.


A small flow of water as the tide heads out

I could sit for hours by a creek, listening to its song.  When listening was not enough, or the wind was particularly chatty, I could watch the light dance on the water, as it moved down the mountain.  Sparkles and bells. The patterns of the sparkles and the sound of the bells and the song of the wind.

When I lived near the Ocean, the water roared.  The difference between a house cat meow and a lions roar.  Creeks and streams meow, the Ocean roars.  I sat on the docks for hours, just looking at the water.  The sun danced across the surface with the ebb and flow.  I would look into the water and see what was there.  Life happened in the water there.

Even when I lived near the great and, sadly, polluted Potomac river, I enjoyed the water.  One could sit and watch the colors of the sunset/rise reflect off the water and know peace.

Water always knows where it is going.  Down, towards the ocean, to join with the greater.  Even the rain, taken from the larger, falling as tiny drops, know to go down, back towards the larger bodies.  Seep into the ground, become a lake, move towards a stream, join to a creek, become  river, always moving towards the Ocean.  Repeat.

Be like water, the wise ones say.  It is flexible.  Nothing gets in the way of water.  It just moves out of the way.  There are times when water will rage and overcome obstacles by force.  Water knows where it is going, and has not issue with taking it’s time to get there.




Something You Can Do…

I typed this into Google and got a sermon, a few lists of things you can only do in a variety of countries and not much else.

Is there something out there that ONLY you can do?  Not because you have done it so long people think that it is part of you.  Not because you always just do it.  Not because it “happened” to you.  Something innate that you do and are the only person you know that is good at.  Something that makes people glad you were there, because they do not know how to do it (or not nearly as well as you.)

This question has been cropping up in my head a bunch the past few weeks.

“What is something that ONLY I can do (within my sphere of influence?)”

Like many people I am good at all sorts of things.  I am good at cleaning, cooking, typing, my job, organizing things, drawing, painting, designing layouts, really anything crafty (I can even knit!)  I am even decent at programming and building databases.  The problem is that I know lots of people who enjoy most of these more than I do and/or are better than I am.  Let’s face it cleaning is not fun to most people and no one wants the fun organized out of anything.


Easier said than done.

I always hoped that I had a skill that was unique to my sphere.  I have friends that draw better, enjoy cleaning (weirdos,) type faster with more accuracy, and my job is easy (a “mentally challenged primate” can do it.)  The only skill I have that I can share is how things “fit” best.  I do have the “amazing” ability to design publications, layouts and spaces.  I have awesome visions of things that  should be one in order for a project to succeed. I have great ideas for games, videos, stories, illustrations.  My “visions” can be amazing and very clear.

What is something that ONLY you can do?  Have you been able to use it?

I Failed to Ask “should I…?”


I apologize.

Today, I messed up.  I got reprimanded and that is okay.  I learned from my mistake and will not do it again.  The whole reason I made the mistake was because I failed to ask myself one question before I acted.

I did not ask myself “Should I do this…?”

Obviously I should not have.  I know that I should not have.  This is not even hindsight, talking.  I really knew that I should not have done it.  I just did not let that knowledge effect my actions.


Should I do this…?

I still cannot fathom how out of had everything got.  It was crazy.  The word of mouth advertising was amazing.  I did not even tell anyone.  People can be crazy observant when they want to be. If you want to get some cool information out, just tell a few people and let things flow.  Sometimes you just hand out a few things and it will take care of itself.  Within minutes of me getting to work I had lines of people.  They started a wait list!  I do not think I could have gotten such a response from a company wide email.  If the result had been smaller, I probably would not have gotten Management so worked up.  When you have lines people flowing through your workspace for several hours, your actions have gotten out of hand.

Even more astounding is that all of this started with a simple questions.  “Can you…?”  Once that question was asked the artist / designer in me to over.  I knew I could do it, I just did not know what it would look like.  I went to work and designed the product and it was okay, for a rush job.  So I replied “Yes, I can.” And I did.  They did not ask if I would, I just did.  I did not ask if I should, I just did.

If I had asked “Should I..?” the answer would have been “No.”  Sadly I think I would have still created a few of them for co-workers and turned others away.  I got really carried away and just stopped thinking.  When I stop thinking about my actions, things can go bad quickly.

Lesson learned.  When asked “Can you…?”  I will ask myself “Should I…?” before I do anything.