Wednesday, 24 April 2013

What a week!

Life has been kinda hectic for the past seven days.

On top of all the usual 'being Hannah' issues, the following has happened:

A gallery of my communication cards was featured on the BBC pictures page (at one point the gallery was next to watercolours by the Prince of Wales - quite some juxtaposition! which I only realised thanks to a tweet from @5)

I visited friends in Somerset for the day (lovely, but exhausting).

My Differently Normal 'Zip Buddy' Keyrings arrived, followed shortly by the wristbands. Which caused a small flurry of orders and a heavily laden trip to the post office.

2 book reviewers reviewed Welly Walks and Biscuit Baking (a parenting magazine and a book blogger)

Had the most marvellous time at dance group last night.

I've hardly slept for 48 hours.

And I put a picture on facebook yesterday (competition to win a differently normal wristband) which, according to the stats, has now 'reached 14,696 people.' I'm not smug, not at all!

The overall result? Tired, happy, looking forward to tomorrow, and spending today like this:

Description: happy, tired stickman lying on a beanbag, dreaming about 'differently normal' wristbands

Monday, 22 April 2013

Invading Ants

I don't mind them in the garden, but when lying on my beanbag, discovering one on my face.....then another down my top....well, it's not nice.

They may possibly have perished.

I thought they invaded my 'beanbag space' via the open patio door and thought no more about it.

Then yesterday there were MORE! Eight to be precise.

I know. I counted the 'squashed' marks.

Where are they coming from? Searching frantically for their access point I found a tiny gap in the skirting. But I had no ant repelling stuff! How could I stop this encroaching army? Blu-Tack. I squished it mercilessly into the ant doorway, praying it could withstand their onslaught.

So far so good. I can stop panicking until the next ant arrives.

(And no. This is not over-reacting. Three years ago I ignored the odd random ant in my bathroom. Then I walked in to a swarm of hundreds coating every surface. Including my toothbrush. Cue a very rapid exit, some very girly shrieking and a 'Damsel in Distress' call to my brother. Trust me, when you've experienced that once, 'Never Again' is pretty high on your agenda.)

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

Core stability.....distraction.

I've been working on the re-draft of 'You know you have POTS when...'

I decided I needed a stickman illustrating strong core stability.

After turning to social media for inspiration, I'm not sure I succeeded

And then I got even more distracted by 'Gym mishap' stories.

So perhaps I'll go have lunch, and try doing my proper work again this afternoon.

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Copyright - to use the picture or not?

I recently saw an image being used (not one of mine) on a page without the copyright holders permission - despite the page purporting to support creativity. I contacted them reminding them that it was a copyright protected image. Their response indicated that they didn't realise the implications of their actions.

This is my stance:
If a picture is posted or tweeted on social media, which says on it the creators name/web address/copyright info or similar, share it all you like.

However, if you want to use an image on your website, or as a header on a social media group or campaign or blog or anywhere else where it is fixed and linked to you/your organisation/charity/social media group, then ASK. If you want to print it, ASK.

This is important.

With email and social networking sites asking is very easy and need only take a few moments. Then you will get an answer. It may be yes, it may be no, it may be 'if you pay for it'. But you will not be taking away my livelihood.

If you ask, you are much more likely to get a yes than if I discover you are using an image without permission. In which case expect to be told to remove it - even if I would have said yes had you asked, if you cannot show me the courtesy of respecting my work, why should I give you permission to use it?

If you are planning to use it for a good cause, or as a charity, or for awareness raising, this DOES NOT give you a right to use an image without permission. Seeing as virtually all my work promotes understanding and acceptance of disability, this theory means I have no right to earn a living. My images are how I earn money to live. It is applicable to the work of thousands of charities and non-profit organisations and groups across the globe. If every good cause used my images without consent my images would be everywhere but I would a) not earn enough to feed myself and b) have to close my business.

And I apply the same principles to the work of any other artist too.

If you want to support artists, then, quite simply, ask for permission before you use an image.

Monday, 1 April 2013

What I've learnt this last week:

1. If you can't eat chocolate 'cos it messes with your POTS, following @cadburyuk on twitter is not wise.

2. If you reach the stage where rest is needed, turn your phone off.

3. Think before you pack.