Support SaysBrad
  • (Most Compact 20000mAh Portable Charger) Anker PowerCore 20100 - Ultra High Capacity Power Bank with Most Powerful 4.8A Output, PowerIQ Technology
    (Most Compact 20000mAh Portable Charger) Anker PowerCore 20100 - Ultra High Capacity Power Bank with Most Powerful 4.8A Output, PowerIQ Technology
    Anker

    This thing, you need. Run your smartphone for days.

  • Klear Screen iKlear Cleaning Kit for iPad, iPhone, Galaxy, LCD, Plasma TV, Computer Monitor and Keyboard (Cloth, Wipes and Spray)
    Klear Screen iKlear Cleaning Kit for iPad, iPhone, Galaxy, LCD, Plasma TV, Computer Monitor and Keyboard (Cloth, Wipes and Spray)
    Klear Screen

    I use this cleaner for my iPhone, iPad 3, iPad mini and MacBook Pro. It’s great all-around and won’t mess up the oleophobic coating on iOS device screens.

  • Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound 3.5 Grams
    Arctic Silver 5 Thermal Compound 3.5 Grams
    Artic Silver

    If you’re having problems with your Adonit Jot capacitive touch stylus or Hex3 Jaja, you can improve its performance and reliability with careful application of thermal paste! For more on this, check out my capacitive touch stylus how-to fix-it guide. Months later (Sep 2013), my styli are still performing great!

  • Adonit Jot Touch with Pixelpoint pressure sensitive stylus for iPad - Black
    Adonit Jot Touch with Pixelpoint pressure sensitive stylus for iPad - Black
    Adonit

    Adonit Jot with Pixelpoint, works with a lot of new drawing apps on iPad.

  • Klear Screen's iKlear 8 oz. Pump Spray Bottle 7351-IKHP, Others, Electronics & Computers
    Klear Screen's iKlear 8 oz. Pump Spray Bottle 7351-IKHP, Others, Electronics & Computers
    Klear Screen

    The stuff I use to keep my iPad screen nice and clean!

  • Cosmonaut: Wide-Grip Stylus for Capacitive Touch Screens
    Cosmonaut: Wide-Grip Stylus for Capacitive Touch Screens
    Studio Neat

    Awesome capacitive touch stylus created by Studio Neat. Great guys, great product. I use mine every day! Bradtastic Approved.

  • Adonit Jot Pro Stylus for iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, and Other Touch Screens (ADJPG)
    Adonit Jot Pro Stylus for iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, and Other Touch Screens (ADJPG)
    Adonit

    Adonit Jot Pro is an awesome capacitive touch stylus for iPad & other tablets.

  • Pencil by FiftyThree Digital Stylus for iPad Air, iPad Mini and iPad 3/4 - Walnut
    Pencil by FiftyThree Digital Stylus for iPad Air, iPad Mini and iPad 3/4 - Walnut
    FiftyThree

    Even if you consider yourself a casual doodler or note-taker, you’ll love this well designed stylus. Built for Paper by FiftyThree, the iPad app — however, many other apps support Pencil.

  • Bicycle Standard Index Playing Cards (Pack of 2)
    Bicycle Standard Index Playing Cards (Pack of 2)
    Sportsman Supply Inc.

    Playing Cards for your password creation or poker game!

My Amazon.com Wish List
If you’re looking for an app, need personal or corporate branding, marketing material, an illustration, logo, sketch or design — there’s a Brad for that!

Entries in lifestyle (4)

Thursday
Sep192013

Birthday

"Happy Birthday, dear Bradley..."

On Monday, my birthday passed by quietly. No Hawaiian vacation, Disneyland trip or Reno excursion... just a quiet evening with family (sans sister, unfortunately, due to proximity) and it was just fine by me.

It's been a difficult year. Illness and disability has kept me inside for most of it. Spent a lot of time reading; some writing, some designing, some sketching. Researching politics and world history has led me to reevaluate many things — it's been very troubling and somewhat disheartening, to really understand the dark and ugly truths behind American government, the Federal Reserve Bank and our fiat money system, and the push toward disarming America and moving toward a globalist, collectivist authoritarian government. Post 9/11 America — post-Bush, post-Obama America, how much free speech and independence will we have?

A worthy cause...?

At a minimum, it's inspired me to want to spread information and ask more questions, difficult questions. We should always question and scrutinize our government and leaders. We should always be skeptical of government and its messages — especially when they've told us they not only have and will continue to lie, but they have an obligation to. For our safety and security, they claim.

To that end, I will be working vigorously on my new website project, aimed at asking hard questions and unveiling inconvenient truths. Americans have been locked in an increasingly hostile left vs right paradigm for over 100 years when we should really be looking at individualism vs collectivism.

But that doesn't mean I want to give up on having some fun.

I still love art. I love the good in the world. Technological innovations and video games. One minute after my birthday ended, Rockstar's Grand Theft Auto V released — a sort-of belated present, I suppose. I installed iOS 7 also, though I must admit to being slightly overwhelmed by it.

I miss the tweet/post widget in Notifications. I think I'll leave my phone on iOS6 for now because of it. I never updated my iPad 2 to 6 because of YouTube. Now I have devices on each OS from 3-7.

If you have PSN, add me: rainfault — especially if you want to play VITA games like Soul Sacrifice, Dragon's Crown, Earth Defense Force 2017... or Diablo III for PS3. My GTAV copy is also PS3.

Life.

I was listening to an interview with survival guy Blake Sawyer — he thinks that 90-95% of Americans will be dead within 5-15 years. According to him, he's researched some of the same stuff I've been looking at, but for the past 35 years, and it's time to bail — flee America for safer, better, libertarian nations.

But I love America. I believe it's worth fighting for. I believe in The Constitution, and I believe that there are millions of Americans willing to fight and die for the freedoms here, at home. Mass exodus won't solve the problem.

It comes down to this: are you willing to die for what you believe in. Are you willing to die for the things you love?

Not just people, but things. Maybe sports, or movies, or video games, or bike riding. What would you give up to stay alive?

 

The thing is: everybody dies. Sometimes early, sometimes late in life... fulfilled and unfulfilled. My family is here. My dreams are here. And I am not alone.

 

 

So this post got kind of serious fairly quick. But that's what I've got. I'll try to get that new site up soon (it shall be, as soon as the content is written well enough), so this blog can go back to being about tech and toys.

 

Take care, stay safe, and have fun. While you can. Dun dun dun...

 

Friday
Sep072012

Design is a Serious Lifestyle

BC Logo Concept 2
"BC" logo conceptual designs, #madewithpaper

 

Bradtastic Brad Chin BC logo concept designs made with paper by fifty three
Putting letters and symbols inside of shapes and playing with balance and positive versus negative space. Reminds me of "cake cutting" from NUMB3RS. Says Brad

 

As an artist, designing for yourself is often one of the hardest things to do.

When I started designing professionally eight years ago, I would meet all kinds of professional artists who didn't have their own business cards and websites. Sometimes, I'd get the qualifying statements excuses, "oh, this card is temporary," (or old), "my site is under construction." Fast-forward: things are about the same, except I'm not out much due to disability and chronic pain.

Sometimes I talk to artists online — at least now it's easy to setup an online gallery, free blog, flickr account, etc. — but the situation is still similar. As a solo freelance designer, you can't hire someone else to design your own stuff, and if you want to pay the bills each month, you have to keep working.

Disability and chronic pain changed everything for me, every aspect of my existence. I'm doing things and dealing with things that I never imagined in my pre-teen years. However, I still like a lot of the same things.

I've tried to create a little something for myself over the years, eventually settling on something that I liked, only to create something better the next day, week, or month. As an artist and as with all things, learning and improving — progress — should be constant. Consistent. So it's only natural that I'd continue to get better.

Design is a mission

Design should evolve and progress with society and culture. Being a designer is a commitment — the process itself is its own art form. Design is a way of thinking and a way of being. Design must grow, and sometimes through growth, change, but the commitment remains in the roots. Great design requires a commitment to perpetual excellence.

But logos? Logos should be constant… at least for longer. Like a name, a logo is an essential symbol of identity, but it should be more. It should convey values and ideals, traditions and origins. It should impress upon and instill its audience with a thought or feeling. Good logos deliver messages. So how does a designer design a logo? Design is always changing, designers are always improving, but a logo should stay the same. A paradox? No. Difficult, though.

The big blessing, The New iPad

Using Paper, I created a few "BC" logo concepts — something I could use, like a monogram maybe. Throughout the day, I tweaked and refines these sketches; some were erased, others duplicated. Some of them work, others not so much. During this process, I thought about how I was doing what I was doing… and how special it is for me.

Several years ago, Apple released the iPad and surprisingly, changed my life. Earlier this year, I was fortunate enough to get The New iPad; just a minor update/refresh of the iPad 2 for some, this device changed my life again, and continues to with new apps and app updates.

Equally surprising is the app Paper by FiftyThree, my thoughts paralleling the first-generation iPad. (I loved The Next Generation from the beginning) When I first saw (both of) these, I thought more style than substance, and I probably won't use this. In both cases, I'm very happy to be so-entirely incorrect.

I couldn't envision the benefits. Both seemed too similar to stuff I already had, stuff I was satisfied with. Both have blown me away, both I've mentioned before.

I mention it now because both the iPad (especially the new one with the Retina Display) and Paper (with my super styluses, oStylus DOT and Cosmonaut) are my main creative tools. Despite my condition, I can quickly draw and write, even laying down. With Dictation on the New iPad, I capture thoughts without holding the device!

The stuff I've drawn here probably wouldn't exist without these things. Hopefully, both will continue to improve, as design should! (Paper could really use more color options, zoom, and Jot Touch/Jaja support!)

The bigger, better

The relationships that I've developed because of the iPad are perhaps even more extraordinary. I'm friends with people I'd never have met otherwise; people across the country, some from other continents, others out of our solar system on outpost space stations and starships.

Some of the app developers have inspired me to keep trying, keep improving. iOS developers and accessory makers (those I've interacted with) are all really nice people, easy to communicate with and quick to respond. They appreciate and often encourage feedback, constantly improving, as designers should!

In particular, I want to mention Lance Barton. His company makes blogging happen on the iPad. Blogsy is fantastic as-is, and is always improving… (there's a pattern to things I appreciate and admire)

Lance has been really courteous and generous with his time. We email, and although he isn't a big writer, he always responds. Hopefully we'll video chat; FaceTime or something. He's from California but llives in South Korea; I think that's pretty cool. Aside from being my friend, I think it's great that he cares a lot about Blogsy user experience and answers everyone's questions. I had an relatively minor issue publishing here using Blogsy; he invested a lot of time troubleshooting, and had his team figure out how to fix it.

I also want to mention Andrew Goss. He's a manufacturing jeweler in Canada and is fantastically generous and kind. He designed and made the amazing oStylus, and then improved it with the DOT, and then improved the DOT! He's also a grandfather. He designed the oStylus because he wanted a great stylus to use with his iPad. That's pretty cool.

Sometimes, the process is more remarkable than the outcome.

Design lead me the iPad and these people just as graphic design is the basis of the images above. Sometimes, the journey is more important than the destination. Perhaps design isn't just a way of life or result. Perhaps it's in the core, the components, the elements, the trials, the errors, the paths — both what is done and how it's done. Maybe sometimes God is in the details.

 

A final thought on portfolios for professional artists out there.

I've found that sometimes, a comprehensive portfolio can work against you and your client or prospect. This happens when a potential client sees work done for someone else, and is then set on something similar. Instead of presenting previous projects and too many options, if I thought someone might offer repeat business, I'd create a few free design concepts. The advantage is that it's customized specifically for that potential client, the disadvantage is that it could mean doing work for no money — and the risk that that s/he/they might take that idea and give it to someone else. (There are a few ways to mitigate this risk, however.)

Friday
Apr222011

Blogging: as a technology and lifestyle

Updated on Monday, April 25, 2011 at 2:24 AM by Registered CommenterBradtastic

Blogging is definitely changing.

I’m not sure that it’s ever been as fun as it was when I actively maintained a LiveJournal; it’s so easy to get addicted to the comments and the attention — and that feeling of complex social integration. It was a one-stop news source and social radar; with friends-view and community journals, all kinds of information could be found and all questions could be answered without ever leaving LiveJournal. [The quality of information is debatable, however.]

I felt connected to a ragtag group of mainstreamers, social misfits and outcasts, all chiming in from time to time; mostly to share random tidbits of useless nothingness, melodramatic rants and complex status updates in far excess of 140 characters.

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Jun102010

What a race!

Over the past few weeks, my life has been project after project,

With no time to relax. I'm not complaining — not really — because it's been good. I've been in a position to help some friends get things done while simultaneously making some money. Altogether, not bad.

I haven't had much downtime, however — no time to relax. With a disability, that's a bad thing. Yesterday I was really run down.

A perfect storm.

I was struck with medication side-effects, heartburn — extremely intense, despite taking acid reducers, and I had a horrible stomach ache plus a head-splitting migraine. It was my intention to meet with a friend for dinner and a chat — but I wasn't in a reasonable condition.

Fortunately, with some rest, I started to feel better... a few hours ago. I'm still being cautious about what I do and specifically, what I eat. I've been watching Star Trek and I played some Red Dead Redemption (awesome game). I managed to get some work done as well.

It's during these gaming sessions, while relaxing, when I come up with many of my ideas. I've been thinking a lot about blogging/writing and my websites, and i'm thinking about using Disqus for comments here. Squarespace's default system just isn't working for me. I don't get email notification when new comments are posted, and I don't understand the spam filter.

Video games are fun with friends!

I'm excited about co-op gaming: Red Dead Redemption will have multiplayer missions soon, and Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker (Sony PSP) was entirely designed with co-op play in-mind and at-heart. If you have a PS3 and/or PSP, please let me know.

Yes, this post is random. It's early in the morning and I'm in a lot of pain still. Later I'll post about my project for San Francisco magician Peter Morrison and his show at The Marrakech Magic Theater (located near Union Square)...

and the upcoming Starcraft II launch event here in the bay area!