Day: May 14, 2013

  • the coolest LEXX t-shirt in the world

     

    So many people talk about their bucket list. I really didn't pay attention until this last year, when the opportunity came up to ask myself- what would I like to do before I die? Even if I live another twenty years or more, those years could fly by pretty fast with all the continual distractions that demand our attention until that time is eaten out from under us, because the last twenty sure seem to have done that.
     
    Top of the list is a trip to Ireland, but my list was still only one item long. What do I *want*? Something really, really ~cool~.... I want something unique, something only I have in all the world. I want something meaningful only to me, something rare and precious that will inspire awe and envy in everyone who knows what that meaning is all about.
     
    The Lexx movies and tv series is a somewhat rare thing (especially in the U.S. until streaming tv picked it up) that has had significant impact on me personally, as I've written about at Why Lexx Is Personal. I really don't get very involved in fandoms any more, but I know there are plenty of other Lexx fans out there still creating their own Lexx art for love of the show and lack of other merchandise to be had. Why not make this a thing? MY thing. I'm not much of a collector between not having that kind of dough and literally giving the cool stuff I did have to other fans at one point, but that doesn't mean I can't find a way to help bring more Lexx into this world.
     
    Too many words already! Get to the point! Well, there's this cool airbrush stall at the mall, why not start there, right? You can click that to get to their website.
     

     
    I'd never commissioned artwork before, but they were cool and patient and let me hand them a cash down payment (I was pretty serious about pushing the project), and provided them links to screen grabs because they'd never seen Lexx, although they said Star Wars was a popular commission theme, along with Call of Duty, and several other fandom and gamer themes.
     
    I'm not an artist. At all. Ok, a very little. Basically, it was pure trust. I had no idea if what I would get would be caricatured (I've seen a lot of t-shirt work come out of comic cons) or stylized or a basic copy off a screen grab. I don't have the kind of brain that can envision art, so I just figured the more cash I handed them, the better it would look, and walked away with my fingers crossed, assuring them it was ok to take their time because, yes, other projects are lined up.
     
    Three months later.  I KNOW!!! *thud*
     

     
     
    And that was just the back. Here is the front.
     

     

    There were originally going to be two artists working on this, but Noel grabbed it and totally owned it. After I fell over, Noel told me a little about how he constructs t-shirt art. He started by spraying bleach on it to create a galaxy effect- star fields, nebulae, and lens flares, got some awesome highlight flares around the Lexx, which you can see in these closeups. The 'orange' spotting inside the shirt is bleedthrough from the bleach, which looks cool, too.

                                               

    After the bleaching is done comes laying the background with color fill, and then detailing the ship. I asked about how long it took to do just the Lexx itself on the front side, and Noel said 5-7 hours. I was tickled to see he'd worked the Cluster symbol in, and of course the first thing a true Lexx fan does is count the segments, and there were 7, just like in the show. He said 8 would have been easier, but stayed true to the screen grabs, and that right there made the t-shirt worth it for me.

    I was also very pleased to see that Noel had incorporated the original font. I don't think I had specified that level of detail. Lexx fans know how difficult that font is to find. Impossible, actually. I'm betting it's not a real font at all but a creation by a graphic artist specifically for the show. I doubt a whole alphabet exists for this font, unless a Lexx fan obsessed with fonts carried out the mission to completion.

    I was also really impressed with the level of detail on the Lexx that Noel could get onto a t-shirt.

            

    That curve in the tail is the shirt being wavy.

                         

    This t-shirt turned out to be a real piece of art, and even though Noel assures me will wash and wear well, I'm probably going to reserve it for very special occasions, like when I travel to cool places. Noel says he tricks out everything he wears, so it's probably safe to say he's got one of the most unique and collectible wardrobes on the planet.
     
    Noel McEwen is a freelance airbrush artist who does only strictly commissioned one-off projects. He can custom paint about anything, as you can see in his gallery on facebook, including motorcycles and helmets, instruments, denim and leather, and even town murals. Personally, if I ever get the kind of cash for this, I'd love to put Lexx on a car. I have always thought that would be the coolest thing a fan could do, and if that happens, it's gonna be Noel. Here are a few of my favorite projects from his gallery. These thumbnails will NOT click bigger here. If you want to see more, there are about 300 currently in his gallery at McEwen Airbrush.

              

                       

          photo jacket.jpg

    This is NOT an ad for Noel to sell Lexx art. This is me being nice and spreading the word because I was so stunned by how awesome this shirt is. If you think this is awesome and would like some work done (keeping in mind there is a wait period), you can message through facebook. You can also find other airbrush artists through Branson Airbrush, or in your local business pages. These are NOT bulk t-shirt sales, there is no more than one of anything they do because they don't reproduce their art for a production line, and expect the work to be fairly pricey because it's unique and high quality.
     
    Showing off again...  I have this and you don't, nyah nyah.  
     

      

     
    Don't know if you can see how much that says.  I offered it. It was definitely worth it.

     

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My first tracker was installed in 2004 and broke several times before moving to a new server, which lost a few months of stats, and then Xanga moved to new servers and I lost more stats for more months before the page came back up, so I've lost a total of about two years' worth of stats. The second was installed 2-22-14 and is considered very conservative by business owners who use analytics, which itself is very conservative, estimates being that roughly one third to one half of hits by real live people aren't even counted, most likely due to javascript discrepancies. Actual hits on several posts here are in the thousands now, and the Lexx Index in the ten thousands. I've got pingbacks turned off, so spam isn't counted at all within the Xanga internal tracker, and most direct post hits can be correlated to my real time linking activity on twitter and other social media. When I did Google Analytics beta testing I got to see how search engine performance compares to tracking. I believe live feed linking sources to various social medias are key to a future where search engines are more about performance than cataloging, which has been confirmed to me by coders who create bot algorithms as I was beta testing paper.li. I've fought hard through redundant age-old stacks to make my way to the google front lines again, so my Lexx work shows up faster on Chrome searches now. This has been a really interesting ride. At any rate, my point is, I can still go back 6 years on my original tracker and I can still see that in 2013 just before the last big blog server move, I was getting traffic like this (and since then, the tracker may have been abandoned, we can't tell). Click the thumbnail to see full size.

My original tracker also still lets me see the latest 500 visitors on a map. I once counted over 80 countries among the total visits. You guys are not alone. Click the map to see it better.

Besides Lexx, the most common search phrases that bring new visitors here are variations on 'huge spaceship'. The most seen post from a phrase search is How Big is the Lexx? My biggest Lexx referrer is Lexx Domain. Most of page views per person count comes from the Lexx tag on Tumblr. Visitors who stay the longest come through URLOpener and are pinged through the Google translator server in Mountain View, CA.

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