Tuesday, October 29

I'm Making This A Halloween Tag!

Tag time! Woot! This time I was personally tagged by Jon.


Part One: Answer the 10 questions that have been asked of you.

1. What's your favorite food(s)?
Raspberries! Yum! 

2. When you first started talking to me, what went through your mind?
That Jon is so kind. He's wonderful!

3. How did you hear about DeviantArt?
I first heard about it in high school, but didn't become a member until 2007 when my game-industry colleagues spoke highly of the community there. The rest is history and I love it!

4. Most embarrassing moment?
Wow, I don't really embarrass easily. I'm typically laughing at it as well. I remember once I slept walked at a friend's house when staying the night and walked into her little brother's bedroom. I started to fall asleep on their floor until they heard me, turned the light on all startled, and then I woke up. I guess that floor was really comfy! Their rooms were side by side in the same hallway, so it was understandable. 

5. If you could meet any historical figure (living or deceased), who would it be?
I had a hard time with this one, because I haven't thought about it before now. That, and history is debatable depending on who's writing it. However, Chief Seattle does come to mind. I'm sure I would learn a lot from him. 

6. What's your favorite nickname somebody called you?

7. Have there been any fictional characters that inspired you?
Yes, tons. I wrote about some here.

8. Do you have any tattoos/piercings?
Yes, my ears are pierced. 

9. What are your hobbies?
Art, cosplay, games, movies, exercise, and good conversation.
  
10. Do you prefer car or motorcycle?
I like both, but I prefer walking when I can.

  
Part Two: Invent 10 questions the people you tag will have to answer.

1. How long have you been celebrating Halloween?

2. What do you love about the holiday?

3. Do you still go trick or treating? Why, if so or if not?

4. What's your favorite Halloween goody?

5. Do you like to be scared?

6. What's your favorite Halloween icon: Ghost, Skeleton, Witch, Black Cat, Spider, Pumpkin, etc.?

7. Surprise! You have unlimited funds to throw a Halloween party. Where and what would it be?

8. Vampires or Zombies?

9. When you carve a pumpkin do you make it happy or scary?

10. What's your absolute favorite Halloween memory ever?

Happy Halloween everyone; I tag all of you ghouls and ghosts out there.
Have a spooky holiday!
☠ Claudia

Friday, October 25

Get What You Want

 
Need a kick in the arse? Watch this. 
 
I find this TEDx Talk to be extremely motivating and I wanted to share it with you. I was in the bathtub when I watched this last night, and was so excited to work on something when I got out. That doesn't usually happen! I typically snuggle up with a cup of tea afterward and go to bed early. Well, I got my tea and went straight into working on projects. I even stayed up until 10:30pm. Wow, I'm such a rebel.

What do you think? Let me know your thoughts.
~Claudia

Thursday, October 24

Conquering Fear: A Guide to Freedom

“Fear is not real. It is a product of thoughts you create. Do not misunderstand me.
Danger is very real. But fear is a choice." - Cypher Raige (Will Smith), After Earth

Have you ever experienced a time in your life where you've grown so much in some way, mentally or psychically, that it kinda just snuck up on you? You pause for a moment, assess the situation, and say to yourself, "Wow, I've really changed."

This happens to me all the time with art. I'm in the middle of drawing, painting, or designing something and I have the realization that my skills improved. I'm now able to do something that wasn't possible for me in the past. I sit there, bask in it for a bit, and then move on. Those are lovely moments.

Well, recently I've noticed the most profound change in my behavior. I say this, because I want to share it with you too if you're interested. It happened because of my sister, Carin, being sick. That I know for sure, and it's interesting to dwell upon.

Carin has cancer. She's so young, and none of us saw it coming. That's life; full of mystery and wonder. Of course I had to deal with it in my own way, and being across the country away from her didn't help. I had some pretty dark moments, but what's more interesting is what came after. It was almost like I needed that dip to be propelled upward and go beyond what I was before.

I'm talking serious growth. Something that happened so fast that it almost perplexes me. I'm a completely new person, and it seems like the tragedy provided a means to higher understanding. Although, I don't believe that it takes a tragedy to grow. I do however believe that I was forced to adapt, and therefore gained so much from it.

So how does one grow without having to experience a hardship? Well, study what it is that you want. Focus on it, and concentrate if you find yourself drifting away because of the challenge. Just like I was forced to focus on such matters dealing with Carin, instead, one could voluntarily force themselves to do whatever it is that they know will make them grow.

What matter am I talking about? I'm talking about fear. Fear is the reason we do or do not act in life. It holds us back, it makes us illogical, and quite frankly it cripples us. I can think of so many things that fall into this category. I'm even reminded of the Napoleon Hill book, Think and Grow Rich, and how it talks about the six basic fears that all humans suffer from: The fear of poverty, criticism, ill health, loss of love, old age, and death. These arguably are the reasons that we're not successful in some aspects of our lives as well. I'll even take it one step further and be as bold to say that: Life is survival, fear is death.

Everything we do links back to survival or death. We fear things that we think can kill us, and the obvious things are like heights, deep water, predatory animals, poisonous insects, superstitions, the dark, and even the unknown. Death is the greatest unknown. Sure, but what about being afraid of giving a speech, starting a huge project, approaching an attractive person, or even something as simple as wearing a bathing suit in public? These too are all the same. We want others to love us, and we're afraid that we're not good enough. Humans are a social species, and if we're not loved that means death. We all know this very well from a young age. Our survival depends on others' love! A caring mother or individual that nurtures us until we can survive on our own is the perfect example of this. An infant would die, so being loved is vital. Even as an adult if we weren't loved we were left unprotected by others or even kicked out of the tribe. Back then that meant certain death, and the death of our potential lineage.

On the flip side, the more we're loved the more likely we're able to survive. More friends, more mating options, more respect, more opportunity, more abundance, etc. If we're successful, our human needs will most likely be met and happiness will surely follow. Again, life is love and it's programmed deep down within all of us. So if fear is death, then why do we bother with it?

For one thing, it's easy to be fearful, worried, or stressed. It's also a means to love, because of the attention and/or coddling. Being fearful is a choice though, and it only clouds judgement. That's why we respect confident people, want to be close to them, and give them more love than the former. Now, fear and emotions are not the same either. Experience that moment of sadness or angry, but don't be afraid or ashamed of it. It's okay to have a plethora of emotions. Just don't live there; don't let negativity be the default.  


Master fear with these steps:

1. Recognize fear - Notice when it happens, recognize why it's being triggered, and assess the situation.

2. Choose to stop - Nothing in life is worth the price of worry, and a person only destroys their own chances of intelligent action. This also affects others as well. They will reflect fear or confidence if they too are susceptible to such influence.

3. Focus and study - After an episode, go back and ponder the experience. Psychologically dig deep to really find the origin of the issue. This can be painful, but it needs to be addressed! Talk to others about it, study the subject, and implement a strategy that works for you personally. So that when fear strikes, it can be overcome quickly, and happens less in the future.

So with Carin, I was afraid for her and personally put myself in her shoes. I feared death.
Not only for a loved one, but my own death as well. These potent thoughts were enough
for me to face it, and come to the realization that death is natural. It's something that we
all have to go through. There's no reason to fear it, and there's absolutely no reason to
fear anything else. Life is good, and from here on out I will make better choices.

~Claudia

Wednesday, October 23

Before Midnight

This is the third film in Richard Linklater's Before trilogy, and it was truly a wonderful contribution to the series. If there was a word to describe this film, it would be "real"... It just feels so real. It was also very unexpected as well. I didn't see the trailer and I didn't know what direction it was going in. The story was totally different than what I originally envisioned, and that made it even more lovely.

If you haven't seen the first two, Before Sunrise and Before Sunset, they're definitely worth the time. They take place nine years apart, in real life and in the films, and follow the romance between two people. That's all I'm going to say, because just like this last movie, Before Midnight, they're a breath of fresh air. Each movie is about the dialogue and an honest portrayal of how people might grow as a couple.

Of course I had to watch it with a beautiful bottle of wine, and it made for some lovely intellectual conversation afterward. So definitely make time for these films if you're into genuine slice-of-life work.

If you've seen it, let me know your thoughts. I'd love to continue the conversation.

Happy movie watching.
~Claudia

Tuesday, October 22

Dragon's Crown

Another dragon game, yes, I know. This one was totally unexpected. I just saw it one day and had to play it because of the art. It was really that simple, and I hadn't played anything in quite some time because of all of the projects that have been keeping me so busy. It took 20 hours to beat, and I only got the first ending because I didn't really want to play it over again all three times for the different endings. To be honest, it wasn't that fun and there were some things that bothered me. I stuck with it thought because of the beautiful artwork.


So here are my thoughts about the game:

Pros

- The artwork was amazing! I absolutely adore the way that George Kamitani paints. His use of color, line, and texture is so masterful. The character designs (with a few exceptions), backgrounds, and animations were all a delight to behold. I was continuously in awe as an artist, and found myself trying to figured out how the team animated, designed, or drew something all the time throughout the game.

- I liked that at the beginning of the game one could pick a character and color palette of their choice. That was fun, and I picked the Elf wearing Grayish Grandeur. I liked how she looked most, and that she was short and sassy. Typically elves are tall and regal, so I appreciated the change. Also, I noticed that all of the playable characters, except the Sorceress, had a different shade of silver/platinum hair as their defaults. They must have all gotten my memo.

- Multiplayer mode was so much fun to play, and I liked the bones system. It was an enjoyable way to bring more party members with you on the adventure. I found a Sorceress named Claudia that says, "Indeed!", and that made my day.

- The narration in this game was so appealing! All of the voice acting for that matter was brilliant, and I felt like I was partaking in a epic fairytale. The music was beautiful and atmospheric as well, completely immersing the player into the fantastic world.

- I absolutely loved the pets in this game. They're adorable and I always got so sad when I would accidentally get them killed. 

- Of course Ghost Ship Cove was one of my favorite levels. It was neat to see an Arabian twist on pirates. Something that I wasn't expecting at all!  

- Later on the gameplay got more fun when the player could choose which path to take in a level. That was a neat way to explore more and find new things.


Cons

- So a lot of controversy is going around about the female character design in this game. For good reason too, and I'm surprised that men are speaking out about it. That's wonderful. I don't actually have a problem with the extreme proportions in this game because it's pretty equal opportunity. The men are ridiculously muscular and the females are insanely curvy. They're pushed so far that it gave me a good laugh every time I met a new character. It's quite extreme! That rather grew on me over time though, and I accepted that art direction. The issue that I could not excuse was the way that the women were objectified in the game. That was definitely problematic. This was not the case for the men. There's a difference between idealized and objectified. Men were idealized; women were objectified. The women characters were portrayed to be sexually vulnerable. They were hurt, bound, defenseless, more scantily clad than their male counterparts, and even rode the pets in suggestive ways. When they were hit, held, or fell down because of an enemy they were throbbing, jiggling, moaning, or bending over in risque positions. This, of course, didn't happen to the men! They were not taken advantage of in such a manner, and most certainly not bending over with their genitals exposed through tight sheer clothing. So it's not just about the character design, it's how they're portrayed and animated. Definitely not cool! Over time we're affect by our culture and it influence people. So this made me extremely sad to see.

- The gameplay was stiff. It just didn't flow, and it was obnoxious to connect with elements/enemies on different planes. I continually found myself missing the mark, because I thought that I was aligned with it but wasn't. Quite frankly, it was vanilla (I had to!). An average experience, that never really felt challenging and I coasted by barely needing to implement a strategy. Even for the bosses.

- It was very common to loose my character in the commotion of battle. I could never find her! So I just looked for the marker over her head and hoped that I connected with whatever it was that I was interacting with. 

- Offline co-op was a mess! The only player that matters is the first player. It's their game story wise, and any other player will not accumulate any storyline or story items, like bags, unless they're player one. Also, every player has to do the stop and guild separately to get items and quests. I've never played something so clunky and it was a surprise when I first realized that the game was designed like that.


So yeah, if you like to play games just for the amazing visuals then definitely give Dragon's Crown a go. Just be prepared to live through the rest of it.

Happy gaming,
~Claudia

Monday, October 21

Terms and Conditions May Apply Documentary

Wow, this one was hard to watch, but I recommend it to everyone out there because it's important to be aware of. This lovely film is a behind-the-scenes look at what happens to our personal information when we sign up for any service online.

There's no silver lining, and it's a bit hard to digest. The gist of it is that anything that's done online is written in ink. Nothing is deleted, nothing is private, everything is monitored, and is collected for profit or gain. I'm sure most of us are aware of this, I certainly was before watching it, but it was still difficult to listen to once more. The matter is like a catch-22, because we willingly choose to use the Internet and the variety of different services companies offer. So we have to live with the terms and conditions.

This is true for phone calls and texts too. Everything is recorded, collected, and can, and will, be used however they see fit. I've thought about getting rid of my cell phone numerous times, but then how would I talk to my family? I live so far away from them. So once again: Checkmate.

Just be aware and watch the film:

It was sad at the end of the documentary because the filmmakers kindly ask, "Can you please not?" Can you please not do this and treat us this way? That's a very optimistic approach, and unfortunately it seems highly unlikely. Why would they stop when there's so much to gain?

Happy movie watching.
~Claudia

Friday, October 18

Homemade Clarifier for Beautiful Hair

Claudia’s Corner videos are dedicated to topics
outside the realm of digital art.

Homemade Clarifier for Beautiful Hair

For more information, please read the YouTube info box.



Content, editing, and compositing by Claudia Sutton.
Music composed by Alvin Muolic.

---

Please let me know what you think and if you have any questions feel free to ask.

♡ Claudia

Wednesday, October 16

5 Wonderful Ways to Use Dr. Bronner's Magic Soap

 Dr. Bronner's Pure Castile Soap - $9.99 and $3.75

If you haven't tried these soaps you're truly missing out. Not only are they fair trade, organic, and eco-friendly but they're really amazing products. I've been purchasing Dr. Bronner's for years now and I must say that I will never switch back. These products are so versatile (great for travel), and can be used for everything! They smell lovely as well, and it's great to know that a company that's doing so much good for the world is out there. They will always have my love and support.


Here are the 5 ways that I use these products:

1. Hand soap - The bar soap is brilliant for a hand soap in the bathroom or kitchen. Not only is it made with beautiful ingredients that are gentle on the hands, it smells amazing, and won't harm the planet when it goes down the drain. The bars are also packaged in 10% hemp-flax/90% post-consumer recycled paper and can be easily composted or recycled. How cool is that! Also, these bars are huge so they last a long time, and don't get weird when they get small. They stay velvety and soft until the end.

2. Shampoo - I switched over to using the liquid soap as a shampoo a few months ago, and I absolutely love it! There's no difference between this and other shampoos except for the fact that it's more awesome. I've used it on both natural and dyed hair and it works great. The Dr. Bronner's bars and liquid are made from the same ingredients, with the exception of potassium hydroxide for the liquid versus sodium hydroxide for the hard bar soap. Using this for shampoo is so cost efficient and sure beats out expensive eco brands in small packaging. The one downside to the liquid is that it does come in a plastic container. I transfer this liquid soap to a dark glass bottle because it's better for storage, and then recycle the plastic afterward.

3. Body Wash - The same liquid soap used for shampoo can multitask as a body wash if needed. It's super gentle, but I use this very sparingly and only when absolutely necessary. It does have a bit of citric acid in it though which is great for restoring the pH balance to the skin.

4. Facial Cleanser - Yes! That's correct. After a long day it feels so good to take a few drops of this gentle soap and wash away everything. It removes makeup completely, and the peppermint feels refreshingly tingly on clean skin. The cooling smell is wonderfully therapeutic as well.

5. House Cleaning - This can be used for everything in the home. Grease, dirt, grim, etc. It can even be used for laundry and dishes too, but I haven't tried that yet. Perhaps I should! Always dilute it with water. Usually, I just make up a small mixture of a few drops of the liquid soap and a few cups of warm water. Depending on the mess, the solution can be as thick or as watery as desired.

If you haven't tried this stuff, now is the time. It's sold online and at countless stores. 
It's affordable, versatile, and beautiful! Tell them Claudia sent you. Just kidding! Or am I?

♡ Claudia

Tuesday, October 15

Is Conventional Soap and Shampoo Bad for Skin and Hair?

Oh my, I sure used to think it was okay, but after years of study and self experimentation I've found that typical soap and shampoo isn't all it's advertised to be. I remember when I was very little and I asked my parents why they used all of this stuff, and of course I wanted to be just like everyone else, so I didn't question too much after I got a simple answer, "These things help us clean our skin and hair better. Without them we would be a mess!"

Well, is that true? Nature really doesn't know what it's doing? Do we need these products that have been sold to us for a variety of different reasons? Do they really make us better, are they just masking underlying health problems, or perhaps they're even causing new ones?

A few years back I discovered this article about a man that stopped using these products and was better off because of it: I haven't used soap or shampoo in a year, and it's awesome: personal experiment update. Feel free to give it a read. That, along with my own experimentation lead me to the answers.

The biggest issues with beauty are always health related, and I'll start with soap. We use soap to "clean" ourselves. Or at least feel like we are. We've been told our entire lives that it kill germs and make us smell better. It stops disease from spreading and it's the respectable thing to do as a gentleman or lady.

Sure showering and bathing is wonderful. It's a great ritual, and is very beneficial for the mind and body if it's not overdone. Soaps have been around forever too, and date back to ancient times. What was beautiful about soap is that it was made out of vegetable or animal oils, not chemicals. Modern day soaps are made with the most terrible ingredients, and when applied to the skin they go straight into the bloodstream. Things that cause cancer, weaken the immune system, cause brain issues, reproductive issues, organ issues, and allergies. Not only that, but day after day these chemicals are being washed down the drain and they pollute the Earth which affects every living creature on the planet. Also, the packaging ends up in landfills and collects in the oceans. I'm reminded of the famous John Muir quote: "When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe."

So not only do the ingredients in the product matter, but it also matters what the actual product does. Not what it claims to do, and what we've been led to believe without even questioning it. So since we're still talking about soap, what does it actually do? Well, soap disrupts the pH balance of the skin by alkalizing it. Naturally, healthy skin takes care of itself. What happens when we use soap then? You guessed it: We "clean" that area, which pushes the pH up too high, leaving us more prone to dry, damaged skin.

I'm reminded of modern Western cultures that over clean themselves. They have created a whole new problem, and are continuously sick because of the state of their weakened immune systems. Also, doctors in hospitals that washed their hands too much were spreading infections despite the fact that people thought that it was a good practice. Their skin cracked because of too much soap and water, and were susceptible to disease.

Then what about our smell? Many people like to use soap because they prefer the scent. They like smelling like flowers or fruit because we have been conditioned to like it more. This most likely has to do with fresh food selection, because smell plays a huge role in our choices. So someone will notice me more if I smell sweet, or maybe I'll like myself more because this commercial told me that I would be more awesome smelling less like a human and more like a plant.

There are a few reasons for this that I want to touch upon. First off, being stinky is a genuine problem. It's related to health and mating, so atrocious amounts of soap will not help. It's only a bandage, and that's why most Westerners shower daily. It's because they're afraid that the fragrance will wear off, they'll sweat, and people will smell them for real.

Smell is important because it's attractive or not. This relates to wellness because a healthy body doesn't smell bad. We're actually smelling certain types of bacteria when a person is sick. Different types of bacteria mean different things, and creates different smells. That's why we can tell if someone is sick or sexy. So again, what does soap do? Well, it "cleans" the surface area and leaves us susceptible to bacteria. Another reason a person might smell foul is because of poor dietary choices. Bad odor reveals the truth about our lifestyle. That's why smelly people are usually considered to be unattractive and choose to cover it up with soap and fragrance instead of addressing the cause of the matter. Animal products especially cause people to smell bad, because the decomposing food ferments in the colon and breaks down into ammonia which then is secreted through the skin. On the other hand, fruits and vegetables do not do this. Instead, they create carbon dioxide. Then body odor starts to go away, and it has nothing to do with sweating or hygiene. The better we eat, the better we smell.

I'm personally a walking example of this! I kid you not. I notice how my smell changes when I'm not eating properly. Usually on holidays or special occasions I treat myself to some goodies like bread, cheese, meat, wine, candy, etc. and it will happen almost instantly. My sweet natural aroma changes into something more potent. It's a reflection of dietary choices, not lack of hygiene. Soap cannot help with that. Instead, it's just a weird mixture of musky freshness. That's why most sick or overweight people smell. It's the body telling them, and the world, that something eternally needs to be addressed. It has nothing to do with sweating either, because that's a beautiful and natural thing. The odor, if present, is just accentuated by movement and sweat. Change the diet, and change the body's scent.

The exception to this is with mating. People of the opposite sex smell good or bad to each other based on compatibly. For instance, women have a stronger sense of smell when they're ovulating. This is nature's way of saying that a couple is a good match. The smell of a family member, specifically of the opposite sex is a repellent. So we will always find their scent to be strange or unappealing because we have a similar immune system. It's natural selection, and our nose knows who will be a good candidate. Unless of course Mommy sprays on a gallon of Chanel No. 5, then things get complicated.

Also, it's more irresistible to smell human when one is looking for a mate. I'm reminded that pheromones trump any soap or fragrance, because it sends clear powerful messages. Why delude that with an artificial smell? It's also why lovers are attracted to one another more so when they sweat. Their smell is appealing, and it's being accentuated when they get physical.

Lastly, soap is culturally acceptable because we let it be that way. Just like anything else that affects us, companies have been feeding on human insecurities for ages to make a profit. Without question, we believe what we are told and think the way it's permissible to think because of social conditioning. We want to be loved, and a part of the tribe, so we do what everyone else does without being rational about it. Well, I invite you to think about such matters and question if it's really serving you.

The same goes for shampoo which is just liquid soap. Hair should be cared for the same way as skin. Typical shampoos contribute to dry, or oily, hair depending on the person. It's also one of the factors that exacerbates balding and dandruff.

Everything is connected in life, and if we have a beauty problem it's most likely a health problem. Step back, analyze the situation, make adjustments, and see how it goes. Doing the same unhealthy thing over and over will just lead to more of the same.

Personally, I stopped using soap and shampoo in the shower, and have benefited greatly from this new habit. My skin and hair look amazing, I smell lovely, and I'm sure it's even more appealing because it's not masked by artificial chemicals. I don't get sick either. Quitting also helps to cut back on costs and packaging that has to be recycled or thrown out.

So, give it a try! Switch over right away and stop the old habits that are causing so much harm. You have only wonderful things to gain.

As always, I wish you the best. May you be happy and healthy. Share this with people
that you care about, and I encourage you to be a shining example of wellness.

~Claudia

Tuesday, October 8

How to Make a Tape Dress Form Dummy

Wow, it looks just like me!

I've finally joined the club and now I have my very own Claudia duplicate. We're like twinsies! I needed to make this for my Fran cosplay so that I had something to work off of. They're easy to make and can be created for the entire body or whichever body part is needed. What's great about making a custom form is that it's specific for one's body. That makes it ideal, and it costs only a few dollars to make in comparison to buying a dress form for a lot of money. 

~~Materials Needed~~
Plastic Wrap
Clear Packing Tape
Sharpie Marker
Scissors

All you do is wrap your body a little tightly in plastic wrap first (Ladies, make sure to do each breast individually instead of one large lump). Then do a few good layers of tape to cover all of the plastic wrap without taping the skin. Next, draw some body landmarks with the sharpie marker on the tape to indicate where things are, and also make some horizontal lines with the sharpie down the center of the back so that when it's cut open it can be realigned properly. Cut it open down the center of the back using the scissors, and lastly use the marks to realign it and tape the seam back together to make a solid form once more.

One thing that I want to point out is that I used clear packing tape for this because I wanted to be able to see through it. Personally, I did this in zee nude because I wanted to see where things were so that they could be marked. Body parts such as the navel, nipples, ribcage, and clavicle are important to mark so then it's easy to cover or align the clothing that's being created with the landmarks. It makes life so much easier when it's clear where those parts are. If you don't have clear packing tape, it's okay, I've also seen duck tape or thick masking tape used as well. Just use what you have, and try to guess with the marks.

Lastly, I used a feather pillow to stuff my form because I didn't having any stuffing and I didn't want to buy any. The pillow worked out great because the feathers mold nicely to the form inside. So then when I'm done using it, the pillow can be removed and the form can be easily stored away.

So have fun making a custom form for your awesome cosplay, Halloween costume or
fashion design. It's a great way to work off of something instead of your actual body.

Love Claudia xx

Monday, October 7

Problems With Google's Auto Enhance Feature

Last week I realized that something odd was happening with the images that I post here on my blog. The colors were changing every time I uploaded something. Now this was confusing because it wasn't happening on other sites, so I knew that it was just Blogger.

Come to find out after I did my research, is that Google thought that people would like their work to be "auto enhanced," so now when we upload anything it will be "enhanced."

The only way to fix this and turn it off is through Google Plus, which I don't have and don't plan to until they force it. To disable this feature follow these steps here:

                                 - Login to your Google+ account
                                 - Click on "Home" then "Settings"
                                 - Scroll down to the "Auto Enhance" section
                                 - Uncheck "Automatically enhance new photos"

I'm under the impression that this is not working for everyone though and people are still having problems with "enhanced" images, even if they have a G+ and turn these settings off. Note that any old pictures that have been "enhanced" have to be reuploaded as well.

The way that I'm dealing with this, because I don't have G+ and it's sure to work, is to create PNGs instead of JPEGs. This fixed the issue for me, and I'm glad. As an artist, this was frustrating because I control colors on my end and am not in need of such a feature. Ideally, it should be checked off by default.

Lastly, I will say that there are pros and cons to PNGs. The pro is that they're not compressed so my images will be even more crisp and high quality from here on out. The con is that I fill my limited storage space faster, so I'll cross that bridge when I get there.

Cheers, and I hope that this helps others out there dealing with the same problem.
~Claudia

Friday, October 4

Look of the Month :: Fall 2013 :: October

Wine and berries are back this fall! They typically are, but this autumn the trend is as strong as ever. So for this digital face chart I'm doing something really soft with the eyes to contrast the dark lips. Match this with a similar nail color, and it makes for a wonderfully classy look. Personally, I grew mine out to a nice long almond shape to accentuate that sophisticated retro feeling.

As always, exfoliate the lips before wearing any dark color. Doing this before hand will help the lipstick glide on perfectly without caking. So glam it up this season, and have fun. 

The current look is:
O C T O B E R  2 0 1 3


Color trends for this month:
Wine, berry, chocolate brown, black, and pale gold

Current motivation for the look:
 Falling leaves, lunch with friends, and anticipation


Previous Looks this Year:

J A N U A R Y  2 0 1 3

F E B R U A R Y  2 0 1 3

M A R C H  2 0 1 3

A P R I L  2 0 1 3

M A Y  2 0 1 3

J U N E  2 0 1 3

J U L Y  2 0 1 3

A U G U S T  2 0 1 3

S E P T E M B E R  2 0 1 3

Please feel free to express yourself as well! Share links, tips, or any other suggestions in the comments. I would love to hear from you.

 xoxo,
~Claudia

Wednesday, October 2

The Nady Audio MPF-6 6" Pop Filter Works Like a Charm

Nady Audio MPF-6 6" Pop Filter - Isn't it pretty!

For my birthday I got a lovely new pop filter from Alvin. I was ecstatic, because it helps me out so much. I'm not your typical girl that wants frivolous stuff for her birthday. No, not at all. Practical things are much better, and the pop filter is perfect, because it helps me realize my dreams. It's going to streamline my audio production for my YouTube videos and make it that much faster.

That's exactly what it's done too! Which is brilliant because I had my doubts. I used it on my latest video and it worked beautifully. I've never had a problem with plosives after switching over to my field recorder, but I was still having a problem with clicks. So I was surprised that it seemed to clean a lot of those up as well, and I had a wonderful sounding WAV file to work with.

I'll definitely continue to put this pop filter to good use. The setup is simple too. For podcast-esque style recording I have my field recorder on a boom arm right in front of me, like right above my computer monitor and pointing towards my mouth. Then I have my pop filter positioned in front of the field recorder on a small desk stand. There's about a foot between my mouth and the field recorder, and the pop filter goes right in the middle about six inches away from me.

So that's it, and it works like a dream. I'm definitely satisfied with my audio. Also, if you're interested in the equipment that I use for making videos, I have it all listed on my FAQ.

Check it out here:

Love Claudia xx

Tuesday, October 1

How to Make: Hot Apple Cider

Claudia’s Corner videos are dedicated to topics
outside the realm of digital art.

How to Make: Hot Apple Cider

For more information, please read the YouTube info box.



Content, editing, and compositing by Claudia Sutton.
Music composed by Alvin Muolic.

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Please let me know what you think and if you have any questions feel free to ask.

♡ Claudia

Jojoba Oil Benefits - 10 Amazing Ways To Use It | CLAUDIASUTTON.blogspot: Health and Lifestyle