I went to downtown DC for the first time in a few months (lately I had been spending more of my time in the Baltimore end of the Baltimore-Washington, DC area). I found out that Art Whino is having its annual G40 Art Summit and I last went there back in 2011. (Which now seems like another lifetime ago, when I was still married, my worst problem was my ongoing left hip issues, and my husband and I haven’t gotten our first smartphones yet. There were no photos from the last G40 Art Summit I went to because I didn’t feel like lugging my heavy Canon Digital Rebel DSLR camera with me.)

Three years and three smartphones later, I’m back at the G40 event and this time I took a lot of photos. As I was boarding the Green Line Metro at the Greenbelt station, I ran into a couple of people I know. They were on their way to attend the DC Veg Fest that was also being held that day and it was also held near the same Metro stop and in the same general area as the G40. The only difference was that when I left the Navy Yard Metro Station, I was walking in the opposite direction from where the bulk of the crowd were headed.

As I walked north from the Navy Yard Metro Station, I took this nice scenic cityscape where, if you look hard enough, you can see the U.S. Capitol Building in the far background.

G40 Art Summit

I eventually made it to the building where the event was held. This building is a former church that has been given an extreme makeover on the outside.
G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

I was greeted by a man at the front door who said that I should make every effort to check out the upper floor of this building. I took his advice and I went upstairs first. I can see why he highly recommended it.

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

The visual art was on the lower level of the floor and it was really interesting. While there were paintings that were traditionally painted on canvas, there were plenty of others works of art that were done on wooden skateboards, cardboard, vinyl toys, and even a Rubik’s Cube. The level of creativity at this show was astounding.

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

G40 Art Summit

When I was there that day, I noticed that I was one of only three or four other people who were there. When I spoke to the same man who suggested that I check out the upper floor just before I left, I mentioned to him that there seemed to be few people and I speculated that the DC Veg Fest must have taken the bulk of them. The man told me that there were not one but TWO festivals in the same place at the same time. The DC Veg Fest was the one that promoted veganism and it was being held at the Yards Park. The Capitol Bacon Festival was, as you can guess from the name, a celebration of eating bacon in everything and has a message that’s the complete opposite of the DC Veg Fest. The bacon event was held exactly one block away from the vegan event at the Half Street Fairgrounds and there was some media attention over this bit of strange scheduling.

I thought that sounded so hilarious that, as I walked the four blocks towards the Navy Yards Metro Station, I began to toy with the idea of making short appearances at each event and take a few photos. I didn’t plan on staying long at either event mainly because I was tired from doing all that walking and viewing the art at the G40 event. When I did a search on both festivals on my smartphone, I ended up scuttling that idea altogether. While the vegan event was free admission, the bacon event charged a General Admission fee of $25 and I balked at that. I felt that for the same amount of money, I can go to the nearest supermarket, buy several bacon slabs, and go on an all-bacon diet for breakfast, lunch, and dinner for the next three or four days. I ended up skipping the vegan event while the next few photos that I took through the windows of the Half Street Fairgrounds (with some of the shots were set on Zoom) were as close as I got to attending the bacon event.

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I basically walked past the front gate where the bacon event took place (which you can see in the above photo) and took the next Metro train home.

By the way, the G40 Art Summit is opened weekends until October 4 and the admission is free. For more information and directions, click here.

When I was driving to my first-ever television interview (which I wrote about in a previous post), I saw this vintage car that was parked in the parking lot near the back of the New Deal Cafe. I didn’t have time to investigate the car before the interview but I was lucky that the car was still parked in the same spot when I was leaving the building that houses the television studio.

It is a vintage white Volkswagen Beetle.

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This car is so vintage that it has the blue Maryland license plates, which expired back in 1963. I have not see license plates like these since I was very young.

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Judging from the window decal in the next photo, this Beetle looks like it belongs to a newlywed couple.

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Here’s the interior of the Beetle’s front seats. The look of the entire car just screams “VINTAGE!”

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Lately I’ve been doing some work for the Greenbelt Cooperative Initiative, a group that is trying to start new coop businesses that would be entirely worker-owned. So far there are six proposed businesses but, of those six, it looks like the child care cooperative is the one that’s the closest to getting off the drawing board as of this writing.

This group was the reason why I marched in the Greenbelt Labor Day Parade for the first time in my life (which I documented in this previous post). I was also tapped to give an on-camera interview with a few other people in this group for a television program so it’s my television debut.

Before anyone reading this gets excited for me, I just want to say that it’s an interview for a very small television station. In fact, the interview was done for the Greenbelt Access Television (GATE), a public access channel serving the city of Greenbelt, Maryland. So it’s basically an interview for a small channel that broadcasts in only one town. Even the television station itself is small, which one can see in the photo below that I took once the taping ended. I was almost against the wall when I took this photo.

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We all sat in chairs on a tiny stage while we were discussing the formation of several worker-owned cooperatives. This particular show won’t air until next month, which will be Co-Op Month in Greenbelt. Once I learn more about the air dates and times, I’ll post them in a future blog entry.

GATE is located in the Greenbelt Community Center building. As I walked through the hallways of the community center after the television taping, I saw this charming fall Thanksgiving themed window display.

photo2

One day, as I was leaving my home, I found this very large spider weaving its web on the side of my house.

Giant Spider

I’ve been doing some extensive decluttering lately and I have some items that will be on sale this coming Saturday at a yard sale that will benefit my support group for separated or divorced persons.

First up is this souvenir map of a now-defunct theme park that I bought with my allowance money when I attended with my parents for my first and only time.

It’s a large folded poster-sized map of a theme park called The Wildlife Preserve that was located in Largo, Maryland.

Vintage 1970s Map of a Now-Defunct Theme Park

As you can guess from the logo, it was an animal theme park similar to Disney’s Animal Kingdom except this one was far less elaborate than the Disney one.

Vintage 1970s Map of a Now-Defunct Theme Park

Interestingly, the tiny print under the logo says that it was owned and operated by the American Broadcasting Companies, Inc.—also known as ABC. I never realized that the television network had a hand in running the place until I saw the fine print. Ironically, ABC itself would eventually be bought by Disney and that network has been so closely merged with Disney that one could find references to ABC shows at the various Disney theme parks in the United States.

Vintage 1970s Map of a Now-Defunct Theme Park

As this section of the map shows, this theme park was primarily a drive-through park where a family would drive a car very slowly along a paved road that had various wild animals frolicking around in various sections of the park.

Vintage 1970s Map of a Now-Defunct Theme Park

One of the big rules was that the windows had to remain closed at all times, which turned out to be a very good idea. That’s because at one point, we came across this ostrich who started to look into the windows of our car while staring at us. I can only imagine what would’ve happened had any of us violated that closed window rule. (LOL!)

Vintage 1970s Map of a Now-Defunct Theme Park

The front area of the park was the one area that we didn’t need a car to drive around in. (It was also the smallest area of the park.) There were a few places to grab food and drink which I don’t recall very much other than they basically served fast food. Of course, there was a gift shop. There was one pavilion that had a bird show where the various birds did tricks and stuff like that. There was another pavilion that showed reptiles and I remembered the trainer had a boa constrictor and he invited the audience to come down to the front of the stage and pet the snake. I petted the snake and I remembered that its skin was as smooth as a tabletop. My mother was grossed out at the idea that I petted a large snake but I didn’t think it was any big deal.

Vintage 1970s Map of a Now-Defunct Theme Park

Last, but not least, there was the front gate where one bought tickets and a parking area where people can leave their cars when they were not driving the main path through the park.

Vintage 1970s Map of a Now-Defunct Theme Park

The Wildlife Preserve only lasted a few years mainly because taking care of exotic animals at a theme park that was opened only five or six months a year proved to be a very expensive money loser. That theme park was converted to a few other theme parks that didn’t have animals (the Wikipedia has a complete list of all the theme parks that have come and gone in that same location) and, today, it serves as the location for Six Flags America.

I thought about just throwing it in the recycling bin but I couldn’t bring myself to do it because I thought that it would be a shame to just get rid of something that has really great line art that has somehow remained among my belongings for many years. I decided to donate the map directly to the benefit yard sale mainly because I just don’t think that there is a big market for items from an obscure now-forgotten theme park that only lasted four years in the 1970’s. I figured that a parent of an animal-loving child could buy it as a poster for the child’s bedroom. Or some art student could buy it and use it in a collage project.

The rest of the stuff in this entry are various collectibles that my husband and I have hoarded over the years. After he left, I decided to try selling them as a way of both decluttering my home and raising some much-needed cash for myself. I looked on eBay and I found that many of the listings for the same items I wanted to unload had either gone unsold or had sold for so little (like $5 or less) that it wasn’t worth the effort to use eBay at all. So I tried the local antique dealers and collectibles stores throughout the greater Baltimore-Washington, DC area. I sent e-mails to dealers as far away as Frederick and those e-mails either went unanswered or I was turned down because none of the stores were interested in what I had. (I had one store manager who was interested in the commemorative Jackie Robinson Wheaties box only to change his mind at the last minute.)

Now I’ve decided to donate them to the yard sale just to get rid of them. Here are the pictures I uploaded on my Flickr account that I originally used to show the dealers what I was selling.

The Jackie Robinson Wheaties box.

Jackie Robinson 50th Anniversary Wheaties Box

Jackie Robinson 50th Anniversary Wheaties Box

Jackie Robinson 50th Anniversary Wheaties Box

Jackie Robinson 50th Anniversary Wheaties Box

Jackie Robinson 50th Anniversary Wheaties Box

Jackie Robinson 50th Anniversary Wheaties Box

The Cal Ripken, Jr. Wheaties box. This particular one is interesting because the front of the box originally had Cal Ripken wearing just a plain black shirt. It was subsequently withdrawn and replaced with Ripken wearing the Baltimore Orioles black shirt that has his number 8. This one is an error box but I couldn’t get any of the dealers to give a damn about this one, which I found really surprising.

Cal Ripken in Plain Black Shirt Wheaties Box

Cal Ripken in Plain Black Shirt Wheaties Box

Cal Ripken in Plain Black Shirt Wheaties Box

Cal Ripken in Plain Black Shirt Wheaties Box

Cal Ripken in Plain Black Shirt Wheaties Box

Cal Ripken in Plain Black Shirt Wheaties Box

The next few pictures are of the corrected Cal Ripken, Jr. Wheaties box where he’s wearing the properly marked shirt instead of the plain black shirt like on the other box.

Cal Ripken Wheaties Box

Cal Ripken Wheaties Box

Cal Ripken Wheaties Box

Cal Ripken Wheaties Box

Cal Ripken Wheaties Box

Cal Ripken Wheaties Box

Here is a six-pack of specially marked bottles of Coca-Cola that commemorated the year that Cal Ripken, Jr. broke Lou Gehrig’s record for the longest consecutive playing streak. The bottles are made from glass—not plastic—and none of them have ever been opened. I’m really surprised that there were no takers with this one.

Special Cal Ripken Coca-Cola

Special Cal Ripken Coca-Cola

Special Cal Ripken Coca-Cola

Special Cal Ripken Coca-Cola

Special Cal Ripken Coca-Cola

Special Cal Ripken Coca-Cola

Special Cal Ripken Coca-Cola

Last, but not least, there is this 1980’s Ghostbusters cereal, which I kept because the box touted that it’s a “Limited Edition Hologram Series.” I thought the hologram looked cool at the time and I figured that it would be an interesting collector’s item. But, as time went on, this cereal box (along with the others in the post) was cluttering up the place and there were times when I grew tired of seeing it. Despite its “Limited Edition” claims and despite the fact that the cereal was a spin-off product based on one of the most popular movies of the 1980’s, I couldn’t get anyone interested in buying it.

Ghostbusters Cereal Box

Ghostbusters Cereal Box

Ghostbusters Cereal Box

Ghostbusters Cereal Box

Ghostbusters Cereal Box

Ghostbusters Cereal Box

Ghostbusters Cereal Box

 

All of the items mentioned in this post will be on sale tomorrow at the Changing Focus Yard Sale in Crofton, Maryland and they will be on sale for very cheap prices. Whatever doesn’t get sold at the yard sale will be donated to the North Laurel Thrift Shop after 2 p.m.

Benjamin Franklin

If evils come not, then our fears are vain;
And if they do, fear but augments the pain.

While I was busy decluttering my home for an upcoming yard sale that my support group for separated and divorced persons is holding this coming Saturday, I came across these two animated cell paintings that I did myself years ago.

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I purchased a cell painting kit during a trip to Walt Disney World years ago. I remember buying this kit when my husband and I spent a day at Disney-MGM Studios (which has since been renamed Disney’s Hollywood Studios). During that visit, we saw The Magic of Disney Animation where we saw a short film featuring legendary CBS anchor Walter Cronkite and Robin Williams (the memories of which are especially poignant since Williams committed suicide earlier this year) followed by a walking tour where we saw the animators hard at work through a glass partition. That section was our most favorite part of that park and my husband and I were really disappointed a few years later when Disney decided to shut down the East Coast animation department and that section became little more than a static exhibit on how Disney animation is made.

After I returned home, I opened that animation cell kit. Basically outlines of Mickey and Minnie were already printed on a piece of plastic. I had to use the included paints to paint the characters according to the enclosed instructions. When I finished the painting process, I had to place the cell over a background that was included in the package followed by a cardboard frame.

I thought about hanging the cells but I was less than impressed with the cheap cardboard frame and I never got around to buying a better frame. Overtime I simply forgot about these two small pictures until I was going through stuff in my home looking for something I can donate to the yard sale.

Right now I have no interest in keeping these cells. While I enjoyed the painting process, I’m pretty ready to let go of Mickey and Minnie and I would rather not go through the hassle of selling them through eBay or Etsy (especially since Disney is notorious for cracking down on any unauthorized sales of their copyrighted products). At least with the yard sale, they will be priced cheap enough that I’m hoping that they will make a little bit of money for my support group and some parent can buy something to hang on a child’s wall for a very cheap price.

If you’re dying to get your hands on these two pieces, come by the Changing Focus Yard Sale this Saturday in Crofton, Maryland.

Here is the seventh video in a series of computer animations called The Unicorn With An Attitude that I did back in the 1990’s in an ill-fated attempt to show off my abilities as an artist and a computer whiz in the hopes of either 1) get famous or 2) get a higher paying job than the office administrative work that I was frequently offered.

I created this animation way back in 1995 and I actually uploaded it on various BBS as well as CompuServe. I originally created it as an animated gif using cheap software for a 386 PC. I later imported it into QuickTime and uploaded it on my own site. I have totally remastered it in high definition video using Apple iMovie. As for the music, I used one of YouTube’s royalty-free songs.

This clip was a Christmas episode. I know that it seems strange to upload the Christmas episode on YouTube in late September but I only did it because it was the seventh animation I did in the series and I’m basically uploading the series according to the original release date instead of the content.

But, then again, I’m starting to see a few Christmas items starting to creep into the stores (especially in the arts and crafts stores) so maybe it’s not so crazy uploading this animation now.

Here is the original write-up that accompanied the video.

In “Santa’s Surprisel” Santa Claus visits the Unicorn with a special Christmas surprise as a reward for not following the televised murder trial of football hero T.J. Simmons. It’s a sequel of sorts to “Channel Surfing,” “The Art Class,” and “Withdrawal.”

So, without further ado, here is “Santa’s Surprise.”

I’m still practicing Inkscape on a used Dell laptop that has Linux Mint installed (which was loaned to me by a friend of mine who procured it through his job at the library when it was getting rid of old equipment). Here’s my latest result.

buddyandboo-optimizedgraphic

Yes, it’s my version of Boo the World’s Cutest Dog, who has become a big Internet celebrity. It’s based on one of the many photos of Boo with his friend, Buddy, which frequently show up on Boo’s Facebook page.

You can now download this image for free at OpenClipArt.org.

I recently attended the Silver Spring Maker Faire. I attended it last year when it was known as the Silver Spring Mini-Maker Faire but, due to the fact that this event is bigger than it was last year, it is now known as a regular Maker Faire.

I arrived early because I had a meeting scheduled with other people starting at 2 p.m. so I couldn’t stay for the whole day. It was just as well because this event was just as crowded as last year so I basically made do with just taking pictures with my smartphone camera.

I arrived when it first started, just in time for the Hoover Uprights band in the next photo to play its set. One of my friends from my Unitarian Universalist congregation was in that band.

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Here are the rest of the photos from that event. There were tons of kids doing the hands-on exhibits, which was why it was hard to get close to many of the booths.

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

There was this big area called the Cardboard Playground where people were invited to make things from cardboard while a giant cardboard robot oversaw everything.

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Makerspace 125 (formerly known as Club 125) had a booth at this event, which was well received.

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

A high point of this event was the display of the new Tesla electric cars.

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

I even shot a short video of some of the more interesting parts of the Maker Faire, including a frisbee-tossing robot, a demonstration of a tiny flying drone, a toy car, and a toy car race on an electronic track.

Like I wrote earlier, I couldn’t stay the whole day due to a meeting that I promised I would attend. On my way to my car I took this overhead photo of the entire event while I was on the pedestrian bridge between the City Place Mall and the parking garage where my car was located. Even from up high you can see how crowded the area was.

Silver Spring Maker Faire, September 14, 2014

Ironically, despite my effort to make the meeting on time, I was still late because I encountered an unexpected traffic backup due to geese!

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