SD 1075–1109: I planned to write this on March 13th, the three year anniversary of when the pandemic became real for me (and what I am numbering up from), then I looked back and saw my first post in this series was on the 15th so that seemed like a good anniversary, and then, well, happy March n+2700sth.
This year has been going scary fast! Even on top of the past three years not counting! It is April on Saturday! How! Why! Stop! Slow down! I have been continuing to go out more, I am in the office two days a week, things are getting more “normal” even though things will never be normal again, etc, but it is not doing anything to slow down the passage of time. What is up with that.
March is a month of bad anniversaries. Just ask Caesar! Matt’s birthday is the 12th but somehow that feels part of another world from Friday, March 13th 2020. Also other bad March stuff. Who is reading this? Why am I writing this? It would probably be better to actually reflect on that other March anniversary, but it is a line I will walk up to and place my toe on here but not cross farther.
Changing subjects… I bought myself a new iPad Pro! Realized mine was six years old and since I am using it regularly again to draw it felt worth it for the processor boost and to have access to the Apple Pencil 2. I still have not mastered freehand digital art, but I am enjoying myself and finding success in comfortable methods.
I have been using Adobe Fresco primarily and the watercolor and oil features are compelling, but I need to find a balance / figure out how to create things I am happy with.
The Oscars happened! We had an Oscar themed party for Matt’s birthday. We missed a majority of the nominees, but as huge Everything Everywhere All At Once fans, it was an exciting night! Sometimes the interesting weirdos do win!
We tried to catch up but only managed to see Triangle of Sadness and Tár. Both were weird! And good! Glad weird things can be recognized still. The party was kind of silly. We started actively rooting against All’s Quiet on the Western Front which I did not see but remember enjoying the book. A successful night in its mundanity after missing the excitement of last year.
In other news, we are fully in the midst of a technological phase shift on the heels of Chat GPT and Dall-E. Bing became sentient and is trying to break up tech reporter’s marriages (it is horny). Google is face planting in its hesitance. GPT 4 came out. Midjourney 5 came out. I continue to experiment with the text based generators and poke at their edges.
They do feel immediately useful (in certain capacities) in ways that NFTs are… not. These technologies have been around for years now but have really taken off in an easily accessible way in the past year.
I hadn’t been doing much with image generators but got the bug for last weekend and decided to subscribe to Midjourney for a month to check out the new version 5 model. Things are quickly getting weird. Twitter was fooled by a picture of the Pope last weekend. I am still not tweeting. I am enjoying being back on Tumblr but Mastodon is not really a Twitter replacement still since it does not have the user base. I think I am probably better off without the realtime firehouse of Twitter, but I cannot really say all of the hours I am spending on Tumblr in 2023 are… good.
I am of course also still spending plenty of time in FFXIV. The Loporrits are starting a podcast.
Speaking of image generators, I followed this Ars Technica tutorial (which hilariously[?] was already out of date at the time of being published) and got Stable Diffusion running locally on my computer. I can now make Craiyon level nightmares locally to my heart’s content. I spent Sunday training it on my face using the Dreambooth method. I feel weird about sharing the images but it is a fun narcissistic diversion.
Like… I really like these images. But as someone who has painted and drawing many portraits of myself and others… should I? Is this taking away from artists? Potentially… yes. But I would never actually commission an artist to make images like this for me, so who knows!
The future is interesting!
However, I think the most important part of this tool is now I can stick myself into Star Wars film stills.
Against my better judgment I changed my Facebook profile photo today after having a picture of myself with Bridget from college for more than a year. You used to be able to do that without it going to people’s feeds.. but no such option presented itself. I feel embarrassed and sad. The future!!!! Grief!!! Loss!!! Other stuff!!!
Did I do anything else in the past month besides the Oscars and Matt’s birthday? Went to brunch a lot I guess. Hmm. Oh yes, there was a Diablo IV beta. Can now click the button and also be horny!
Also this happened.