reileen: (Default)
I'm on FastWeb, looking for teh free moniez to pay my way through DePaul. I come across two particularly promising ones:

The Illustrators of the Future Contest is open to artists from allnations. One entry is considered three black and white works illustrating a science fiction or fantasy story with no recurring theme. Your entry may not have been previously published. There are four quarterly deadlines each year (September 30, December 31, March 31 and June 30). You may send an entry at anytime, however you can onlyhave one entry per quarter, your entry will be entered in the current quarter. Send photocopies only. Individual artists retain copyrights.Three prizes per quarter of $500 each and a yearly grand prize of $4000 are offered.


The Writers of the Future Contest is open to amateur writers. Your entry must be a new short story or novelette with a science fiction, fantasy, horror or speculative fiction theme, that has not been previously published. Poetry and children's literature cannot be accepted for this contest. There are four quarterly deadlines each year (September 30, December 31, March 31 and June 30) with three prizes per quarter of $1000, $750, $500 and a yearly grand prize of $4000 is offered.

Sounds awesome and completely relevant to my interests, right?

Except that both of those contests are sponsored by L. Ron Hubbard.

Yeah. Back to the searching board I go!

when I thought it was over, only begun
reileen: (Default)
ANI240: B+
HON201: B
HON205: B
JPN103: C-

Current GPA: 3.629

AWESOME. At least I didn't fail any of my classes! And I still have enough cushion room for keeping my scholarship (the cut-off is a 3.0 GPA).

Hmm...I feel like new icons and tagging my posts. Tagging is fun and addictive. So is Super Paper Mario.

excuuuuuuse me, princess
reileen: (art - paint jars)
You ever notice that, no matter how much you believe that something you're showing off is crap, you still feel disappointed when you don't get (m)any compliments on it?


Shiroko's gonna have to go from the "Now Three" animation, assuming I still decide to attempt to continue to animate that thing. One of the problems brought up when I showed the prototype first half of the animation as my final project in ANI240 is that no one could decipher what her role was supposed to be in the context of the story. Not that I blamed them - I've had her character concept since January or February of this year, and I still have no idea what she's doing in the animation. Which, you know, is probably a very good sign that she doesn't belong. I think that's just as well, though: the story of Now Three truly has nothing to do with her - she was simply there because she could be. But now she won't be. (Instead, she'll star in a number of original CGs and will probably become my mascot of sorts. She's just too adorable to leave hanging.)

One more final to go. Let's see how badly I botch that one.

the same rain that draws you near me
reileen: (music - proofread score)
My cover of "Whatever You Want" is mostly performable at this point. I still have to work on the timing for the second set of lyrics, but I can fumble my way through well enough...I think.

Amazingly, I've also managed to piece together the main chords for Evanescence's "Give Unto Me." I had the opening melody figured out by memory a few days ago, and with my iPod at my side, I picked out the rest of the chords. I just need a couple more hours at the piano to figure out and practice the arrangement of the chords, and then I could probably perform that song too. Luckily for me, Amy Lee's vocals in "Give Unto Me" are very much within my singing range - none of her usual screaming like you get in "Lithium" or "Bring Me to Life" or whatever.

I'm also working on Simon and Garfunkel's "The Sound of Silence." The chords for that are mostly figured out; arrangement is the scary part, though I have a decent idea of what I could do for it. I found out that the chords I'd Googled for this song were a half-step lower than what was originally written, so I had to spend time messing around to get the right chords. I can't even name half of these chords, though - I indicate them on the paper by writing the main triad of notes that are involved. (I plan to do some study of music theory during the summer. Srsly.)

In two days I've got my Japanese final, so I need to get cracking on studying for that, because otherwise I will seriously fail that class.

but distance sees through your disguise
reileen: (general - strawberry)
I am amused that my final paper assignment for econ, boiled down into its bare parts and translated into fandomese, is essentially me writing a 7-page self-insert RPF fic featuring five of the economists we studied this quarter. lolz. Thank the Gods it's not due 'til next Thursday, so I've got time to BS something. (Meanwhile, I have to cram on this art history paper. Whups.)

While we're on the subject of economics...if you read no other economics-related book in your life, I highly, highly recommend Banker to the Poor by Muhammad Yunus. I started the book, intending only to read the first three chapters for class that Monday...and ended up zipping through the entire book. It's readable, it's heartwarming, and it all actually makes sense.

Yunus is the founder of Grameen Bank, a bank that gives credit specifically to poor people (and primarily women, since according to Yunus they're the ones who suffer the most from poverty as well as the ones more likely to put extra funds towards care of the family) so that they can be self-employed and independent, able to live dignified lives. It was an idea started back in 1976, when as an impulse he loaned out $27 to forty-two stool makers in a rural village of Bangladesh. Whereas most economists seem to work from theory to practice, Yunus appears to take the opposite approach, first learning by doing, and then formulating theories based on his experiences. Both Yunus and the Grameen Bank won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2006, and it's well-deserved in my opinion.

all the riches, baby, bring what your love can bring
reileen: (music - proofread score)
Three hours or so in the practice rooms today have yielded to me the secrets of Vienna Teng's "Whatever You Want" - I can now perform the entire piece, albeit a little haphazardly and wildly off-key. But the basis is there, and at least the beginning part is pretty much set for me, which was what I'd first figured out of the song anyway, last week. It's a ridiculously fun and addictive song to play...which is rather appropriate, considering it's a ridiculously fun and addictive song to listen to, even though the lyrics are about a marriage that's breaking up because the husband is a h0r to his work.

On the other hand, I've still got a couple more listening activities to do for Japanese, and boy oh boy am I behind like a mother-fucker on my animation project. Also, art history paper due next Tuesday that I totally haven't started yet even though I must've had at least three weeks. At least I now own the DVD for the movie that we're supposed to write about: three huzzahs for Amazon.

It's also really sad that I seriously have to consider taking up citizenship in Japan later in life because the state of our nation appears to have gotten frighteningly bad and I can't flee to Mexico or Canada 'cause Uncle Sam's got extradition agreements with them that prevent Americans from escaping American jurisdiction in either of those two countries.

But for now, I shall flounce off to take a shower before settling in with a Dew or ten and working at whatever it is I need to do.

As a final word: Sheridan Prasso's The Asian Mystique basically amounts to "NOMG AZNZ R PPL 2!!!111ichi!!!"

she's alone again
reileen: (general - strawberry)
Kekekekeke. Not as good as it could be, but when I get tired of it I'll change it.

Now, back to this economics paper. I personally love the turn that my notes on Leo Huberman's Man's Worldly Goods are taking:


Huberman trots out the great Karl Marx! Bow down before him, bitches.*

pg 229: Huberman basically tells us all that Marx came up with a way to haxx0r the capitalist system.

This'll be a grand paper to write, I can feel it.

would it be enough to live on/if my love could keep you alive?

*Not a Marxist. Just poking fun at how Huberman's ability for analysis seems to go right down the drain once he gets to talk about Marx's theories. lolz fanboy.
reileen: (Default)
I never did go to that Intonation concert from this entry. In my defense, though, I'd really not rather do any performance without at least one rehearsal. I e-mailed the coordinator of the concert asking about a rehearsal time, since I wouldn't know anyone there or where the concert was going to be held, and he never responded, so I didn't want to go and make a total fool of myself. Plus I didn't really know what I wanted to play. Hahahahawhups.

My New Year's schedule has also been shot to shit, although it's been that way for a while. Just another personal case of self-disappointment in the life of Reileen. It's not a surprising development for me.

To top it off, I never sent my conference paper to either of the two possible places that I could have sent it, mainly because I never bothered to finish the "related work" section of my paper. I know I could have, but I just got really lazy and lethargic and depressed. Rrrargh.

In happier news, a friend has introduced me to a slightly more sugary version of Ali Project, called Yousei Teikoku, and I am hopelessly hooked on a couple of their songs (although I think listening to their stuff for too long drains my life energy or something).


Current grades:

ART106 - A
JPN102 - B
ANI220 - Expecting an A, but we'll see...
ANI105 - Probably a B?

Blargh. I should've done better.

to skip or not to skip, that is the question
reileen: (Default)
Spring break is here for ze Reileen. Huzzah! I'm hoping that I can get a significant amount of creative work done. I know I'm feeling the art buzz - I've been churning out sketches like crazy and I'm itching to CG again.


I discovered that my old AP Language teacher has a Facebook account. This amused me and delighted me to no end. I really miss her - she was an excellent teacher and I loved having a class with her. I used to come back to my high school and see her and some other favorite high school teachers and talk with them,* but now most of them don't teach there anymore for a couple of reasons.**


It's funny...I didn't like Evanescence's "The Open Door" album too much at first, but after listening to some songs from it and "Fallen" on my iPod, I'm finding that I like it way more than most of the stuff on "Fallen." I've also always liked their pre-"Fallen" songs better, too - to me, the stuff on "Fallen" feels over-processed to the point of blandness. Plus, I just prefer the melodies of the older stuff.

While we're on the subject of music, I need to see if I can get my Daddykins to buy me a flash drive or an external hard drive or something because lol 3.14 GB of music and counting. Need to get all this shit off my computer, or at least organize it better.

I see you there, farther away

*I have probably just proved what a big friendless loser I am.
**I swear, my class was the one that held my high school together. After we left, it seems like everything's gone to shit now. Holy hell on wheat, Batman.
reileen: (Default)
I want a black cat. And I want to name her Tokiko. Assuming it's female, of course. If it's male...well, I haven't decided yet. Might name him Hiroki, though, after Mighty/Max's VA from Bomberman Jetters.


I've begun working on the preliminary sketches to an original animation for Vienna Teng's song "Now Three" as part of my ANI220 final project. The main character - a little girl - is looking remarkably reminiscent of Cossette from the anime series Le Portrait de Petit Cossette. Which is fine, in a way, since the atmosphere and ambiance of Petit Cossette was sort of what I was aiming for in this animation. I've kept my usual anime style, but it's started to lean heavily towards this strange mix of CLAMP and Petit Cosette.


Began reading Gertrude and Claudius by John Updike. Not sure how I feel about it. It's decent, I guess, and it's good to see that Gertrude has been given some redeeming characterization by Updike.

strangest beauty cries
reileen: (music - proofread score)
"Triskaidekaphobia" is up to "able to be performed decently" level! There's one part at the end that I decided to change a little, but technically I could just keep it as I just had it, and the song would still sound listenable (I think). If I get it good enough, maybe I can perform it at Intonation. Or not, since the song's really only like a minute and half. Srsly.

Shit, I still don't have any specific articles to cite in the "related work" section of this damn research paper...gonna have to search tomorrow if when I get up. And my dorm room is messy again, but what else is new? And I gotta find another thing to draw for my next ART106 project, and I have to fix my ANI220 storyboard frames...

All of a sudden, life doesn't seem too hot.

soon as this wall in my heart comes down, gonna make it feel like home
reileen: (music - proofread score)
1. Like mentioned in the previous entry, not too cold today, at least starting out. It ended up being a bit slushy, but that's what you get for wishing for a winter wonderland. (Not me, but the crazy freaks out yonder who actually like winter.)

2. I have an extra day to fix up the storyboard I did for today's class in ANI220 and make it look all pretty. I'm sick on handing in crap to a class that I know I can whup everyone's asses in. (Well, mostly everyone's.)

3. Learned the basics about perspective - that bane of all banes for artists - today in ART106. One day, I'll be able to draw detailed backgrounds with correct perspective! One day...

4. Drank mostly water instead of my usual Mt. Dew. I feel refreshed and clean!

5. Despite the fact that I have this chronic yet unexcusable tendency to be late for/missing most of/entirely skipping JPN102, I have still managed to ace all our quizzes as well as the midterm. This has colored 私の先生 very, very impressed.


A while back, I noticed a flyer in my dorm building advertising for a cross-uni student concert called Intonation hosted by one of the schools that houses students in this dorm building (there's three schools here total, including mine). Curious, I sent off an e-mail to the address on the tag that I ripped off the original flyer, and was asked about a week later for any sort of sample recording. Being the lazy girl that I am, I shot off the link to my YouTube account.

I got an e-mail two days later asking me if I was available to perform at the university on March 22.

I'm definitely flattered that the person thought I was good enough to be included in the line-up of musicians who are most likely way more talented than I am. Oddly enough, I'm also looking forward to it. The last time I performed live in front of an audience was back in...junior year of high school, maybe? And I hated having to do those two piano recitals that I did, so it's strange now that I'm looking forward to perform. Maybe it's because this is something I chose to do, instead of something I had to do? It's not a paying event, either: all monetary proceeds and food and clothing donations go to different charities (Intonation is apparently held 2-3 times a semester). I'm actually fine with that, though - right now I don't think I deserve to get paid for playing, but I'm glad that my plunkity-plunks will apparently be put to good use anyway. I'm pretty sure I can make the date, because it's right on the cusp of my spring break, and since spring break is only for a week, I should be able to convince my parents to let me snooze away my days at the dorm.


Also gearing up to eventually take ACEN '08 by storm when I make my debut on the Artists' Alley floor. I printed out the regulations for this year's ACEN so I could look them over and see what would be expected of me out there next year, because I'm deathly paranoid that I'm going to completely fuck up and ruin everything for myself. I have a couple of ideas for original stuff that I could sell, both at my hypothetical table and perhaps at the Art Show as auction items, so let's hope for my art muse to not abandon me so cruelly again.

Speaking of this year's ACEN, I still haven't started on sewing my cosplay costume...ahahahaha...

never thought it'd feel so right, bringing you to your knees
reileen: (music - proofread score)
So apparently I don't have to come in for jury duty tomorrow. I called the number provided on my cell phone, and according to the sweet recorded receptionist, only those who have last names "starting with 'f' as in 'foxtrot' through and including names that start with 'm' as in 'might'" have to attend tomorrow. I'm not special enough, apparently.

Also, I am starting to suspect that I cannot write halfway decent song lyrics unless I am sufficiently depressed. I attempted writing two songs yesterday during ART106 class when I was supposed to be sketching and...well...the results were barely promising. And the times that I have been able to write poems or song lyrics have been times when I've been extremely angsty for whatever reason. Since I don't really care to find something to depress myself with, I suppose I'll just have to suck it up and learn how to write songs at the drop of a hat.

Finally, I need to start keeping a (real-life) journal in Japanese. Really. Gods I'm so behind. Why does something as simple as telling time have to be so damn hard?

and the taste of dried-up hopes in my mouth
reileen: (art - paint jars)
Charcoal drawings. Ho-hum. Not sure when I'll have actual art for you guys to see. )

I've really surprised myself in ART106 thus far. I almost never do observational drawings, and I don't use traditional media all that much, but these have turned out surprisingly decent. Now I want to experiment more with charcoal...though I don't know what I'd want to draw with it. Still, there's something creatively romantic about walking away from a drawing with blackened fingers. It's like the time I was working on [ profile] aerithzstrife's oil painting and I had colors all over my fingers and arms. I love working in Photoshop and don't plan on stopping anytime soon, but I also feel at home getting into the mess of things. Kinda makes me feel like I've "earned" the title of artist. Now where are my stat bonuses, bitch?


Got myself a lime green 4GB iPod. Have named it Saria after the green-haired sage from Ocarina of Time, and am very amused by it.

so don't turn away now
reileen: (Default)
Apparently Blood and Chocolate is being made into a movie. And said movie has totally raped the novel up the ass with ten spiked dildos.

Uh. Yeah. What else is new?*


The sketches for ANI220 )

a curse for every mile of ocean crossed

*And it's a damn shame. I don't usually go for werewolf stories, but I actually liked Blood and Chocolate. I first read it back in my junior high days, then re-read it as "research" for the werewolf character I was writing for my NaNoWriMo 2006 project. Admittedly, I was WTF over some 24-year-old guy lusting after a 16-year-old girl, no matter how cool I thought she was, but overall, it's a great little read.
reileen: (art - paint jars)
Midway Games of Mortal Kombat fame was a homely little industrial building smack-dab in the middle of an industrial plain smack-dab in the middle of the North Side of Chicago. Well, okay, I don't know if it was actually in the middle of the North Side, but it was in the middle of something (like that ComEd plant). I took the Red Line to Addison, then got on the westbound #152 for a ten-minute bus ride to Addison and California, after which I hopped off and hiked one long, cold, and dreary block to the building.

Inside, we were greeted by a man named Stephan, who I think is the current director of game stuff at Midway. My ANI220 professor mentioned in class that he was French, and let me tell you, this Stephan guy had the "Frenchman director" look down to a T, with jeans, a turtleneck knit sweater, and even the freakin' beret. (Although to be fair, he lacked the curly black mustache. If he had sported one, I think I might've been a tiny bit scared.) Stephan was a knowledgeable, articulate speaker, and he led us through a tour of the hall of concept art for a game they're working on called Stranglehold, based on a John Woo movie. It was really fascinating to me to get a look at what's behind the inspiration for different parts of a production, whether it be a video game, an animation, or a movie. But here are two really important things that I learned that I'd like to share with the world:

1) Destroying things in games = very, very good. The more you can destoy, the better it is. Maximize destruction in as many ways as possible.
2) Chicago has no train yards. For that matter, neither do any of the other 49 states. Train yards are a nonentity in the U.S. of A. When trains die, that's it - they go bye-bye. There is no train afterlife. The atheist trains were right all along.

Overall, it was a really cool experience, and I've become convinced that this is a possible (and practical...relatively speaking) career path for me. I've always said that I'm more Greek than Roman, because I love playing around with ideas but throw hissy fits and sulk if I actually have to do anything with them. If I work as a concept artist, I can throw as much shit as I want out there and then have everyone else deal with the consequences! Or so it seems.


The final results for my first assignment in ANI105 )

freedom is being alone
reileen: (Default)
Aaaah. My JPN101 sensei was right. I did forget all my Japanese during break! D: I went to JPN102 today and I couldn't remember how to read the kana! And my new 日本語の先生 is actually, you know, Japanese, and she speaks English with a really heavy accent, and omg the counters and the weirdways of counting minutes and aaaah brain breaky and aaah totally can't pronounce any of the words. Add this to the fact that I'm seriously sleep-deprived, and....yeah.

But my JPN102 professor also brought food and is generally energetic, cheerful, and cute, so if I just get crackin' on reviewing my JPN101 stuff, I think I'll survive. Somehow.

I have just realized that I have this paradoxical want to be with others who share my crazy interests and yet stay very, very far away from them.

-Reileen "On-Her-Nth-Can-Of-Mountain-Dew" van Kaile
I think I'm turning Japanese I really think so
reileen: (art - paint jars)
I was successfully able to drop CSC382 and switch around my JPN102 classes, so now my schedule is set with courses that pertain to my major and minor. It's delicious.

ANI105 was a surprisingly small class. In some ways, I like the intimate class size, but since it's made up of people that I don't know (actually, there's a girl there who went to my high school whom I haven't seen since graduation, but I never talked to her much before so she doesn't really count), it's sort of a little too intimate. The teacher's really nice, though, if a little on the ditzy side, and our first assignment sounds like a really fun exercise - I'll post the directions and the results up here once I, you know, actually do the assignment.

Also, I forgot to mention that in ANI220, we're required to keep a blog about our animation projects and anything related to animation. Mwahahaha. The professor wants to keep track of how our ideas are progressing and evolving, but because our class is relatively large, there's no way he can take time out in class to talk to each of us individually, so he told us to create a blog at this one blogging site that he can look at. Apparently I'm the only one in the class who already has a blog, or at least the only one willing to admit it. I'm willing to bet money (read: two pennies*) that at least 25% of the class has a MySpace. I don't really consider MySpace a blogging site so much as an excuse to be hideously, obnoxiously egotistical**, but you gotta work with the masses, you know? I'm not going to post the link to my class blog here, mainly because it's set so that only people I specifically invite can see it. Anyway, it's ugly as hell and you'll get a lot more of lovely me on here. :)

watching puddles gather rain/there's no better place to lay

*I only had to buy two textbooks this quarter, yet I still went well over $100. WTF. And art supplies for ART106 ripped $90 from my checking account. No wonder artists are always so poor.
**I mean, you can be hideously and obnoxiously egotistical on LiveJournal too (case in point: yours truly), but at least LiveJournal's default layouts are decent looking and don't rape the eyeballs. The MySpace defaults are, as a whole, u-g-l-y-you-ain't-got-no-alibi ugly, and I'm not even going to talk about the long-ass quizzes and hideous backgrounds and unreadable color combinations that a lot of MySpace profilers seem to adore putting smack dab on their main pages. The Gods help me if I ever have to get a MySpace.
reileen: (Default)
So. Uh. Yeah. Today was the first day of following the schedule that I described here. Or attempting to, since despite setting my alarm for 6:00am, I ended up waking up at 9:30am.* Yup. I fail. Barring having to make earth-shattering changes in my sleeping habits, though, winter quarter 2006-2007 promises to be a very, very good quarter for a number of reasons.

First off, ANI220 (Animation Pre-Production Art) and ART106 (Beginning Drawing) are already made of major win - I can see that one ten miles away without my glasses. ANI220 is taught by a professor I've had twice already for other ANI classes, and he's pretty good. We'll get to work on the pre-production art for our own personal animation projects, which makes me mucho excited since I already have an (original! ...or semi-original!) idea in mind for that. ART106 just looks to be a fun, relaxing class, while polishing up the basics of my drawing skills. Yay art. My art muse has been dead since the beginning of September, so maybe this'll bring her back. (Trust me, I tried waking her up when September ended. She was dead as a dog in a log.)

JPN102 (Beginning Japanese II) was also predictably fun, but unfortunately I'll have to switch around my times because it takes place on the Lincoln Park campus about 15 minutes after my ANI220 class, which takes place downtown, and there's no way I can make it to there on time without killing myself in the process. (Plus, I'll need time to eat lunch and then drag all my supplies for ART106 over to the other campus.) I have one last class today from 5:45pm to 9:00pm, CSC382 (Applied Image Processing), but I'm going to have to drop that class because otherwise I can't fit in my class change for JPN102, which takes place on Mondays and Wednesdays from 5:45pm to 8:00pm. And I kinda need JPN102, considering I'm minoring in Japanese language...

Also, if I can't fit any Honors classes into my schedule once I switch around the classes I need to switch around, it looks like my Tuesdays and Thursdays will be mostly free time during the day. Huzzah!


In music news, I think I have most of the notes down for "Queen of Denial", so once I get my microphone from home I'll try to make a listenable recording of that. (Mind the emo and the possibly eardrum-shredding voice, though.) I also randomly transposed Vienna Teng's "Lullabye For a Stormy Night" down a half-step from its original key of B major (or at least I think that's what it is) and played it like that, which I also may record if I can ever figure out how to sing the chorus without losing my breath. I can sing it just fine when I'm not playing the piano, but once you throw piano into the mix it fucks everything up. Le sigh. I have, however, found out that apparently a couple of Lifesaver breath mints coupled with a bottle of water help the voice a little. Let's hear it for accidental discoveries! Which is what creative ventures are all about anyway.

crashed on the floor when I moved in

*And since I had a 10:10am class and I also had to pick up my U-Pass from the DePaul Center, I had little time for a decent breakfast like I originally planned, instead succumbing to the allures of a bottle of Mountain Dew. Double fail.


reileen: (Default)
Reileen van Kaile

April 2010



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