Put Your Word Where Your Mouth is!

Here is a little over six month review of the changes made to this blog since I began reflecting content from my Patreon page here:

Blog Followers are up from 114 to 166, a 31% increase

Blog Views are up from 344 to 527, a 34.7% increase

Blog Visitors are up from 260 to 346, a 24.8% increase

Blog Likes are up from 149 to 277, a 46.2% increase

The take away is that the seven month numbers are substantially up against the entire year of 2016, which happened to be the best year ever for this blog.

Why do I bring this up?  Well, because I have to ask you a favor.  When I started changing this blog it was in support of the launch of my Patreon page that I hoped would become a vehicle for achieving a measure of artistic success and hopefully supplement the income from my day job.  As part of this attempt to have an artistic life, I gave myself a year from the beginning of 2017 to make it an  ongoing venture.  Over six months have gone by and while the blog is enjoying success, my Patreon site is not.  There are going to be some things I will look at shortly to make the page more attractive, maybe even switch to a per project model.  Your feedback would be most helpful; however, your support would be better.  If not financially, then by word of mouth, because the more people who visit this blog, the more chances I have of gaining patrons.

Please, if you like what I am doing, tell your friends who like science fiction/fantasy art and writing to visit this blog.  Send them a link.  I come from a long history of retail work and one thing I know is that out of the people who shop, only a small percentage actually buy, so the more you get to shop the better your chance of a sale.  With enough shoppers you can make a living.  I need to make a living.  Please help me get more shoppers.  Promote my site on your blog, tell your friends, become a patron,or even give me advice.

If the situation does not improve, I will have to switch gears and look for a second job to get my financial situation under control.  I will probably find little time to work on projects or post to the blog, which is something I enjoy.  So send me your starving science fiction fans.

 

I will leave you with a content breakdown so far from my Patreon page Robert Garbin’s Patreon page:

7 Short Stories

18 image files

Painting Projects Completed 2 with one nearing completion and another far along

Two Art Projects in Preparation

Poem in the works

Horror Story started

 

First Reward of 2017 (from my Patreon page)

Here is the story I have been teasing you with for the past month.  The story involves an unlikely hero for earth that was not born there and, in fact, is not even human.  Sensu was an Altharian and he was a spy.  How he ended up getting to earth started way back in class on his home planet.  I present “Sensu Learns a Lesson”.

Starship Terra Another Thought

city

This one goes out to all you scientist, engineers, and business people who are so fond of conquering nature.  When you plow over forests and damn rivers to bring us power and shopping malls, manicured estates and glistening steel towers, non-stick frying pans and germ free houses, you need to remember one important fact.  Remember this fact when you see the annoyances nature throws at you as something to be beaten or destroyed.  We are nature.  We are made from the materials we ingest from the world.  Our bodies respond to the stimuli abundant in nature, in fact, that is how we became what we are.  We also have reactions to the things you do that we do not have the wisdom to foresee.  So do not be in a rush to throw technology at defeating an aspect of nature that bothers you or feel you can profit from.  Because by defeating or destroying nature, you destroy us.  For those Christians who believe God put us above nature and; thus, you should be allowed to do what you want, the philosophy still holds.  God made us from the dust and water of the earth.  You are still connected to and part of the nature you scoff.  Bones.

Universal Eyes – Infinite Sadness

Universal Eyes - Infinite Sadness

 

Here is my latest digital drawing.  I am learning more as I do more paintings and am having lots of fun making my ideas come to life.  You may purchase prints of this or Mystics and Misfits from my Deviantart page, the link is towards the bottom on the left (sites).  I hope to hear from you.

Addendum to My Star-ship Terra Post

You are here (courtesy of Casini Space Craft)

A while back I wrote a post about the idea of the earth being an organic generational star ship taking us on a millennial journey through space.  One of the side thoughts I did not mention is about the way we treat our star ship.  Imagine if the brave astronauts on their journey to the moon just dumped their waste where ever they wanted, destroyed their carbon filters to make space to put stuff, and created items with no thought of how to deal with the waste from the process, do you think they would of made it?  Hell no, just read the accounts of the Apollo program written by Andrew Chaikin in “A Man on the Moon”.  After reading how they had to deal with relieving their bowels, the romance of space travel was gone for me.  The fortitude needed to live in your own filth for two weeks is amazing.

Now look at the way we treat our own space ship.  We create all kinds of waste, from the biologic needs of our bodies to the deadly chemicals created by industry and a good part of the time we just dump it somewhere.  We don’t even bother to place it somewhere remote anymore because we are running out of such places.  Here is a good way to understand this, take out a bottle of bleach or ammonia and open it in a confined space (be careful to make sure you don’t lock yourself in) and see how long it is before the fumes become unbearable.  Just because the earth is big enough now to dissipate the waste we produce does not mean it can do so for ever.  The earth is a finite globe, which is why medical needles and plastic bottles wash up on our shores.  Next, think about the carbon dioxide filters of our star ship.  The biggest filters are trees and since the beginning of the industrial age what have we done, we have cut the global forest in half if not more.  In the same period of time, we drastically increased the amount of CO2 going into the atmosphere.  That is equivalent to the astronauts lighting up cigars and then tossing away half of the filters required for the trip.  The ship would make its destination but there would be no one alive to celebrate.

I could continue on but I think you get the point.  All of humanity needs to stop looking at the earth as an infinite garbage dump and understand that it is actually a confined star ship that has no way to replenish the materials we are contaminating and wasting.  There isn’t another ship nearby to rescue us.

Star-ship Terra

Here is another odd thought that rattles around in my cranium.   Consider a super advanced race wanting to create a generational spaceship to take life on a long space journey.  Not a new or original idea, there are many science fiction stories out there with huge ships that are filled with levels, including sections filled with lush forests and farm lands to feed the crew and colonists.  However, most stories take the familiar view of life being sustained on the inside of the craft, which is how we most associate space travel from a historical viewpoint.  All our practical knowledge of space travel comes from human missions in small metal vehicles.  Science Fiction stories have replaced the metal with the stone of an asteroid in some cases, but the idea is essentially the same.

Now, consider a race so advanced that they could make planets and suns.  What if they created an entire solar system to maintain one specific planet to serve as the space ship on a journey so long that even a metal star-ship would not do?  What if they made a spaceship on such a grand scale that it was a living, breathing, and evolving solar system?  That is essentially what we are on.  Many people get the concept that we fly through space on earth as we circle the sun, but I wonder how many people think about the fact that the entire solar system is on a longer journey through the galaxy and the universe as a whole?  We are on a multi-generational voyage to some unknown part of the universe.  Will our progeny live to see the end of our trip?  Think about it.

Drowning in a Watershed Moment

Earth Eyes – painting in progress (Robert G. Garbin, Jr.)

 

wa·ter·shed noun \ˈwȯ-tər-ˌshed, ˈwä-\

: a time when an important change happens

From Merriam-Webster

 

wa·ter·shed  (wo′tər-shĕd′, wŏt′ər-) n.

  1. The entire region draining into a river, river system, or other body of water: a list of reptiles found in the watershed.
  2. A ridge of high land dividing two areas that are drained by different river systems. Also called divide, water parting.
  3. A critical point that marks a division or a change of course; a turning point: “a watershed in modern American history, a time that … forever changed American social attitudes” (Robert Reinhold).

From The Free Dictionary by Farlex

 

I recently finished rereading the Chanur Saga by C.J. Cherryh and was struck by the subtly handled major theme of a watershed moment.  As you can see from the above definitions, a watershed or watershed moment is a significant changing point in events or perceptions.  Up to the point of the watershed, accepted ideas and actions are useful, after the watershed those ideas and actions are useless.

In the Chanur Saga, the main character Pyanfar is from a race known as the Hani.  The Hani are modeled after a pride of lions where the lionesses do the hunting and the males are only there to protect the pride and propagate the species.   In the Hani’s case, the males remain planet bound.  They are coddled by the females and are nothing more than household figure heads challenging each other for the right to rule their clans.  Only the female Hani have dealings with the wider universe of the Compact, a tenuous multispecies alliance for commerce where the Hani have only recently ventured.  While female Hani have managed to carve a place for their species among the other aliens, they still hold fast to the traditional lifestyle of their species.  Males have no place in space.

The watershed moment occurs for Pyanfar when she realizes that the threat an alien leader makes toward her home planet not only portends great loss of life but also the extinction of her species.  Unlike the rest of the races in the Compact, Hani males can only be found on their home world.  Other species are threatened as well, but they have a chance to survive since both genders are space faring.  Pyanfar’s understanding of Hani tradition is irrevocably changed in the face of the fact that their enemies would not realize the effect of destroying the Hani home world.  They do not have the same vulnerability.

I wonder if we, as the human race, have had a similar watershed moment.  I know our history is replete with moments of great change, but have we had a defining moment where we became aware of how vulnerable we were such that, to continue the way we have, is entirely ridiculous.  Well, actually, we have and we are still drowning in the deluge as we stubbornly refuse to let go our old ways.  On December 24th 1968, three astronauts sent back images of our world unlike anything we had seen before.  Decades later a tiny space probe billions of miles away again reminded us of the truth we learned that day.  In the grand scheme of things, we are small and vulnerable.

We are not the masters but tenants on a finite mote in a vast galaxy.  Our world is not infinite.  The scales, which we had previously taken as grand, are little more than imperfections on a marble set on an enormous table, a marble being overrun by humanity.  Yet we still refuse to understand that the garbage we spew into our environment effects people on the other side of the world and vice versa.  If we foul up our air with pollution and deforestation, there is no number to call for a refill.  The processes that put water and air into our world take billions of years to replenish.  We squander them in decades.

Another sad fact is that we are all part of this great machine whether through evolution or divine intervention.  What affects our world affects us through biology.  Ruining the atmosphere will damage our ability to breath, which in turn changes our temperament when dealing with each other.  The more damage we do to the world the more disagreements we will have and the more we will do to ourselves.  Nature wants to find a balance and nature’s solution for imbalance is usually death or expansion.  Given our lack of growth in colonizing even our own solar system, I fear that nature will turn to mass death.  Dwindling resources will put pressures on civilizations faster than solutions can be cobbled together.  Man will turn against man; of course, history has shown this singular inability to unite for extended periods of time.

So we drown in our own stubbornness fighting the currents of the watershed.  Bones.

Finally, here is a video I watched that talks in the end of how connected we are by even one property, electricity.  There is a global electric circuit that connects every part of this planet to the other.