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theophrastus

Chris Howard's Journal

Nanowhere is back!
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the0phrastus

The second edition of my tech thriller Nanowhere is out, although the official release--in print--won't be until next month or early 2012.  The ebook's available right now at Amazon and B&N on the Kindle, Fire, Nook, and any device with the Kindle or nook apps.  (More eBook formats and channels to follow).

This edition has a bunch of edits over the original version, which came out in 2005, and includes two of the research reports by the character John Andreden at the back of the book.

The eBook cover is on the left and the print book is below.

Here's some of the back cover copy:

Nanowhere... it's a love story with all the usual elements: rogue soldiers, computer hacking, tyranny, cryptography, hit-men with an affinity for rolled adhesives, rebellious skateboarders, and sentient billion-node self-organizing nanotech ghosts.

Here's a clip of Cory Doctorow's kind words on Boing Boing:

Chris Howard has released an...interesting and well-written...sf thriller called Nanowhere along with a bunch of supplementary materials that purports to be the lab notes and publications of one of the book's characters ...

 

Amazon.com | Amazon.uk | Amazon.de | Amazon.fr
Barnes & Noble


Nanowhere book cover art

Managed to get some drawing done
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the0phrastus

We had thanksgiving with just the four of us, and I managed to squeeze in some drawing today, a good start on the top panels for for page 239 of Saltwater Witch.  I did both of these in Sketchbook Pro on the iPad.  Plus a little bit of Art Rage. Got myself an AYL stylus a few weeks ago from Amazon.  I haven't always been a stylus fan, but this one's kicking ass so far.

http://www.SaltwaterWitch.com

Switch-page-219-top


Saltwater Witch update - pages 234 through 238
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the0phrastus

Okay, I've posted them--www.SaltwaterWitch.com! For the foreseeable future I'm going to draw panels on my iPad (color when I can) and letter in Photoshop, hoping to get this down as a system that won't take all of my time. I have the rest of this chapter and a bunch of the next--roughly twelve pages--planned out, storyboarded but really sloppy. I drew eleven panels yesterday in Art Rage and Sketchbook Pro, which is a lot for me, and the quality is pretty good.  I'm doing a lot more with gestures and facial expressions.  Disgust is a really tough one to capture. I like the way all of these pages came out, enough to post them.  Haven't colored the last four, but I'm going to keep moving.

Firsts: first time drawing a toilet.

Questions?  Comments? I'd love to hear what you think! 

See chapters  1 - 12 here:

http://www.SaltwaterWtich.com


SWitch page 215 top panel WIP
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the0phrastus

Here's what I'm working on at the moment--and have been working on for the last couple hours.  This is the top panel for page 215.

I've done all of this in Art Rage and Sketchbook Pro on the iPad.

Check out Saltwater Witch here: http://www.SaltwaterWitch.com


Saltwater Witch page 214 is up
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the0phrastus

I'm back at Saltwater Witch for the time being, working on the next two pages, 214 and 215.  I "finished" and posted 214 last night, expect 215 tonight. I say "finished" because I don't have time to really finish these pages, but I'm posting them anyway because you're asking for them.  Actually it's more along the lines of where the hell are the rest of the Saltwater Witch pages?

Anyway, here's the "Finished" looks like.  I drew the panels and did the coloring, layout balloons and lettering all in Art Rage.  It's a bit sloppy, but at least I can produce something reasonably viewable in a couple hours from my chapter 12 storyboarding.

And the story can continue...


 

 


GOP Race = American Idol Auditions?
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the0phrastus

Is it me or has the whole GOP race become the American Idol auditions? Listen, dawg, you said three agencies and then you come back with two? It just didn't work for me. What do you think, Jennifer, Steven, any of these guys going to Hollywood?  Tyler: Slap that baby on the ass and call me Christmas! (I don't know what this means, but it doesn't sound good). Lopez: Make him stop. 

Now I'm waiting for one of the candidates to show up playing the harmonica in a suit made of duct tape or maybe dressed as one of the troopers from Halo who will stomp out and do a creepy falsetto rendition of the national anthem. It's pretty clear which budget we need to cut. Golden ticket printing. I don't think we'll need any.  And gods, we really could have used Steven Tyler the other night asking the tough questions like, "Did you eat a lot of paint chips as a child?"


Tags:

WINTERDIM
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the0phrastus

My novel Winterdim is now available in ebook and very soon in print.  It hasn't shown up everywhere yet, but I see it at Amazon and B&N.  In the iBookstore I think it will get a release date of 11-11-11, which is cool.

Winterdim @ Amazon

Winterdim @ Barnes & Noble


Front cover below, text from the back cover:

Theodora Viran has a way with forests, blossoms, creeping vines, composting, paranoia, and sudden death.  She sees deception in every shadow, a trap in every word, and the universe has always been someone else's  manipulative game,  but when she makes a promise to save the life of a childhood friend,  it becomes a promise she cannot break without breaking her view of the world.



Seaborn Battle
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the0phrastus

I spent another four or five hours last night finishing up this one.  I'm still doing a bit of detail work, but this is pretty much done.

Click on the pic for the full view!



What I'm working on...
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the0phrastus

Here's a painting I'm working on, a really big complex thing with a bunch of figures--seaborn and orcas--engaged in underwater combat.  Still a ways to go, but here's a detail and a much reduced version of where things stand at the moment. So far about twenty hours of work, mostly in Sketchbook Pro and Art Rage, but I've also incorporated sketches from Brushes and Sketchbook on my iPad.  I'm about halfway done.  So much detail in this one.

SeabornBattle-DISP-540w

Detail:

SeabornBattle-DISP-540w


What I'm working on...
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the0phrastus

SeabornAppSampleHoping to submit an update to Apple this weekend. I'm working on Version 3 of the Seaborn Books and Art iPhone app, which includes bug fixes, enhancements, and an entirely new feature called "Ocean View", a set of artistic image filters that will give any photo or illustration an underwater look.  Version 3 of the Seaborn app is going live with five Ocean View filters: Shallows, Biologic, Beams, Rust, and The Tide. 

Shallows attempts to recreate that shallow-water experience of bands and rings of light.

Biologic is a tinting and blending filter that allows you to merge your photos with some of the built-in underwater images of marine flora and fauna.

Beams overlays some vertical bands of light with some contrast and tint adjustments.

Rust…never sleeps. This will significantly alter the copy of the image you run through it.  (See the examples in the workflow below).

The Tide takes a few passes to overlay a rising tide halfway across an image.

With this release the blending, alpha, color, and other values are set for each filter and can't be adjusted, but I'm already working on the next version, which will add new filters and allow greater flexibility with each--sliders for parameter values and the ability to add custom image overlays.  In version 3 the filters employ a bit of randomness with each pass, producing different results almost every time. 

Version 3 will also have built-in sharing features that allow you to post your Ocean View creations--with comments--onTwitter, Facebook, Tumblr, and other social platforms.  You can also email copies of your images and save to the camera roll or photo albums on your iPhone.

Here's my workflow diagram--click to view full-sized:

SeabornV3-OceanViewWorkflow2

 


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