Well we made it this far…7 years in business. Whew! Time really flies when you’re as busy as we’ve been. Ryan and I have been blessed with some great employees, clients and most of all very supportive families. Here’s to all who have made this possible and to looking forward to the next 7 years! Cheers!
I couldn’t ask for a better partner and friend than Ryan Stemkoski. Congrats buddy…it’s been fun. I’m ready for the next chapter.
Last week we took a trip to Seattle for spring break and visited the Museum of Flight. I am a nut for airplanes, especially from WWII, so you can imagine how excited I was to go. I took tons of photo, including a lot of up close detail shots and interesting angles. This should be great source material for an illustration project I’ve been wanting to do for a long time.
I haven’t settled on a specific style yet, but I’m going to create a series of airplane illustrations. The focus will be on vintage aircraft. I love all the details, rivets, exposed engines, landing gear, basically all the mechanical parts that make up these flying pieces of art. These first two test sketches are of WWII fighter planes from the excellent exhibit at the Museum. They were done with colored pencil on Strathmore sketch paper.
I’ll be testing out a few different styles so keep checking back to see my progress.
Working in web design, we get a lot of technology related support calls. Some of them are related to the products we produce, many of them are not. Handling these tech support calls can be fun, challenging, and sometimes just plain fatiguing depending on the technological capabilities of the caller. We always do our best to help our clients arrive at the desired solution but on some occasions the path to that solution can be a long and windy one.
This cartoon depicts a 2+ hour long tech support call that I recently had with one of our clients. She had good humor throughout the call and actually suggested this topic for the comic strip. I hope anyone who has ever been lucky enough to be on either side of one of these long, tech support calls, can appreciate this cartoon.
In the past few weeks we have learned something about the hosted e-commerce providers out there. We learned that they kinda suck when it comes to keeping up with the really important parts of running an online business. I’m talking specifically about their inability to deal with destination based sales tax.
Ok, yes it is a pretty geeky thing to get all worked up about, but here’s something to think about. 35 states and the District of Columbia all require retailers to collect tax based on the destination of the item they ship. For now this is only for instate items, but not for long. There are rumblings that this will go nation wide, and that a retailer may be required to collect the tax specific to ALL of the zones, throughout the country.
Oh, what’s the big deal you say. There’s got to be an easy service you can just link into and it will work. Guess again…there is not. Moreover, most of the shopping cart systems (including one that rhymes with Big Commerce) require the site owner to add in each zone individually…by hand. There is no mass upload, there are no API’s. There’s nothing. And the worst part about it is that they seem perfectly content with this bag of horse $#!&.
Well, enough of my rant. I’m just letting off a little steam for our friend Carlos Rivera. Carlos has been in tax entry hell for a few days now…along with Heather DeCamp and Cameron Spear. As a little thank you to Carlos, I finally got his character finished.
It takes a little while to get to know a new staff member before I can come up with an appropriate character for them. Lauren Hallett joined the Zipline Interactive team at the beginning of the year and I think we finally came up with a good one for her.
As a momma cat, shes very helpful and nurturing, but not afraid to grab someone by the scruff of the neck if needed. We are really excited to have her at Zipline and she is making a great partner for Paola, our other account executive. They are both a huge part of the companys success.
Im sure youll see much more of Lauren in the comics this year, but right now she needs to get back to organizing the chaos like a mother.
As web designers we all encounter those creatures that make projects harder than they need to be. Halloween had got me to thinking about this so I had to capture a few of those monsters here. What monsters have you encountered on your journey through web design?
As with most creative shops we have a certain number of Nerf guns around the office. Most times they are trained on custom made targets in the firing range…but sometimes it’s all out Nerf war. Cameron (the bull) and Nick (the chicken with skinny jeans) make their debut in the Big Green Ape comic today and show what happens when there is a Comcast outage or something more sinister like unplugging someone’s network connection.
After the initial angst of the new Facebook layout, I found that I really like the overshare feature of the live ticker. The live ticker is that scrolling bit in the upper right corner that is usually filled with Spotified updates.
Fast forward a few days and guess what…my Facebook layout has been reverted back to some previous version! After spending way to much time combing through account info and FAQs, I can’t find any way I could have broken my Facebook. Looks like I’m one of the lucky people to find a bug. I was really liking the new updates…while they lasted.
I sent in a message asking for some help, but I really don’t expect any response. Guess I’ll just have to be happy with this version and hope that it fixes itself when they update something else.