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Pickles, Appearances and Purchases. [Aug. 29th, 2009|12:41 pm]
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"On a hot day in Virginia, I know nothing more comforting than a fine spiced pickle, brought up trout-like from the sparkling depths of the aromatic jar below the stairs of Aunt Sally's cellar."
-Thomas Jefferson





This was my first time making my own pickles (though I've helped my mom make 'em from recipes before).
This year, she wanted to make half-sours, and when I insisted on also making ACTUAL pickles (full sour, if you will), she told me I could make them myself. So I did, and invented this recipe as a sort-of amalgamation of other recipes I found. It's by no means tested foolproof, but I loved the pickles I got out of it, so I'm passing it on.


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I'm back in Chicago after a week at home in New York. I spent my little trip attending weddings, swimming in lakes, poking around in my mom's garden, playing with her dog, petting cows at a county fair, and choo-choo-ing down to the city to eat good food and reminisce with a fabulous pal. Also, I made pickles. Sometimes the Hudson Valley is just TOO gorgeous and full of deliciousness to even withstand.

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Appearance:

Oh my!
I'll be at the Midwest Comic Book Association's FALLCON in Minnesota this October 10th and 11th. Their website seems to be down, at the moment, but it seems like a grand old time. I'll have books and posters and stuff, plus I adore meeting nice people, so please come and say hello to me.

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Potential Purchase:

I came within millimeters of buying my very own Cintiq. I've been pining over the damn thing for years, and now I finally have a real excuse to get one (200+ pages to digitally color in the next year or so). So I went down to B&H to give it a try (there are no floor-models in all of Chicago), and was instantly in a huddle with their handsome be-yarmulked staff, debating the merits of the 12WX vs. the 21UX. I was actually reaching for my checkbook, when I decided, with caution, that I'd think about it and come back that evening. I ended up staying out late with my friend and listening to salsa music in Soho, so I didn't make it back up to the store in time, but I continue to ponder the chipper little 12WX, the adorable salesmen and their sexy low price...
I'd still blow almost my entire wad from the convention sales this summer, but...but...
Advice from Cintiq users/owners?

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Comments:
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[User Picture]From: hellomightydog
2009-08-29 06:49 pm (UTC)

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I actually ran back to my Intuos after using the Cintiq for 6 months. I know it sounds crazy, but I like that when I use my Intuos my hand is not covering what I'm working on.
[User Picture]From: rosalarian
2009-08-29 06:11 pm (UTC)

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I love my 12" Cintiq. I can hold it on my lap like a sketchbook to draw.
It is the very best thing I've ever bought. I include my house and my car in this list.
[User Picture]From: saveussos
2009-08-29 06:27 pm (UTC)

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Yeah! My dad made pickles too! But I won't eat them because he made them spicy.
Welcome back to Chicago, where apparently August is the new October?
[User Picture]From: sandor_baci
2009-08-29 06:45 pm (UTC)

What a wonderful device

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You must get one to find out how it changes your art.
[User Picture]From: lesmcclaine
2009-08-29 06:48 pm (UTC)

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I've got a 20WSX and we've got two folks with 12WXes in the studio. I like the extra real estate, but I think the 12WX is the better choice-- you can just set it on your drawing table like a piece of paper and it feels great to work on.

Definitely a worthwhile purchase-- I use my cintiq for all my freelance work that I just want to get done fast and it speeds me up so, so much, especially with doing corrections. It also speeds up just coloring in photoshop.
[User Picture]From: goldfishhead
2009-08-29 07:05 pm (UTC)

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Yay! I look forward to meeting you at FallCon!
[User Picture]From: inkstuds
2009-08-29 07:12 pm (UTC)

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My girlfriend just made about 15 jars of pickles, and she used these fancy jars with glass lids that she found in a thrift store.
[User Picture]From: lookforthewoman
2009-08-29 08:09 pm (UTC)

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I envy your girlfriend her jars!
[User Picture]From: lucylou
2009-08-29 10:34 pm (UTC)

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I love those jarrrrs aughhhh.
[User Picture]From: inkstuds
2009-08-30 01:33 am (UTC)

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They are called Imperial Jem, made in Canada.
[User Picture]From: usagi_moon
2009-08-29 08:31 pm (UTC)

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mmmmmmmmmmmm pickles........yum yum.
[User Picture]From: myxginxblossoms
2009-08-29 08:50 pm (UTC)

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You make me wish I didn't hate pickles. They sound so easy to make. D:
[User Picture]From: ztoical
2009-08-29 09:05 pm (UTC)

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I've used the 21UX at work and it really is so lovely to use. We were colouring and lettering pages for the comic adaption of the animated feature we did and it was 100 times faster and more enjoyable on the cintiq then with the regular studio tablets. I have a 12WX in my own studio, which I got on the fairly cheap side as I got it when I was getting lots of dollars for very few euros and also got an alunmi discount via the SVA store to boot [woohoo]. I do like my 12WX though it's not as portable as they like to claim it is, it has far too many cables, and if you've used the 21UX it is a tiny bit disappointing.
From: robotswana
2009-08-29 09:22 pm (UTC)

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I have both models, and have used both extensively. I can tell you this much: I far prefer the 21UX. The small model is fine as a travel solution, which is what I use it for, but I find working on it is too cramped and claustrophobic. And like other commenters mention, it's far from truly portable, what with its mess of cables and bricks.

It's possible I'm spoiled from using the large one mostly, but it's like the difference between drawing in a small notebook vs having a full drawing table to work with, and the 21UX just feels more solid (plus, you can work upright, which is better for the back). I also find the accuracy/calibration of the 12WX is wonky near the edges of the screen, which effectively makes its workable screen area even smaller.

Finally, consider: comics pages are vertical, and monitors are horizontal.

I guess in summary, I'm fairly biased towards the 21UX. It is my strong opinion that if you can afford it, go for the full-size version.
[User Picture]From: owlyfriend
2009-08-29 09:25 pm (UTC)

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I've been using a Cintiq for 9 years. It's one of the best purchases I've ever made and I'd be lost without it. I touch up my drawings, color pages, pinups, artwork and paint with it every day. All of the new Owly covers and are painted digitally using my Cintiq. I initially had a 15 inch one and I upgraded to the 21 when the refurbs were on sale from Wacom for $1500 three years ago. I occasionally still use my old 15 and it still works... but it's much for frustrating compared to the 21. Sometimes I'd like it to be more portable, but from what I understand the little guy has tons of cables.

The real kicker is resolution. The little guy is 1280 x 800. The big guy is 1600 x 1200. On the little one, the photoshop pallets will take up most of the screen.... that's what makes it so hard when I use my old 15 (though it's 1024 x 768). I need more room to spread out. Mine is on a 3rd party stand because spending all of those hours hunched over it can be hard on your back. The little guy would make it even worse. But I agree, he's cute!

My advice is to get one! You won't regret it. I'd go with the 21 but go with the one that excites you and fires you up to draw! That's what's more important.
:)
[User Picture]From: huganatomy
2009-08-30 05:02 am (UTC)

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Oh, always wanted to ask someone with a long Cintiq experience... Does the screen scratch? Do you use some sort of film on it? Are fingerprints an issue?
[User Picture]From: owlyfriend
2009-08-30 07:51 am (UTC)

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They're incredibly durable. I don't use any kind of protective film wit mine. I've only got some tiny (barely noticeable) scratches on the screen of my old one. My new one is still pristine. Just change the tip before it wears out and you'll be fine. Fingerprints aren't really an issue because it's not a glossy screen. There is an oily film that shows up occasionally but that's from lots of use. A simple damp cloth or klear screen cleans it right up.
From: (Anonymous)
2009-08-29 09:28 pm (UTC)

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Will you please consider making your next book an illustrated recipe book? I would buy that in an instant, despite my aversion to recipes. (Or rather, their aversion to me). :)
[User Picture]From: nolweanna
2009-08-29 10:08 pm (UTC)

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I second this! There are lots of times that I've wanted a cookbook that's fun to read and has tips and advice and parenthetical information just like these pickles do, and I've never seen one. This makes pickling seem achievable, and it was something I was pondering just the other day.
[User Picture]From: lucylou
2009-08-29 10:33 pm (UTC)

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Well you are in luck, my friend, because I've been working on that very book for over a year now.
It'll be stories, histories and recipes of food, all inspired by growing up with a chef for a mom. I signed it with First Second, and it'll be in full color, out in a couple years. Look for it! It's called "Relish."
[User Picture]From: uniformgrey
2009-08-30 04:10 am (UTC)

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This makes me very happy to hear!
[User Picture]From: nolweanna
2009-08-30 05:05 am (UTC)

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This is why you are awesome.
From: (Anonymous)
2009-08-29 10:21 pm (UTC)

Hi!

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My mom and I just got our order of cheese shirts in the mail and we just wanted to say thanks! We're really excited to wear them when we work in the cheese department tomorrow! :)

-Molly
[User Picture]From: think_tank_bob
2009-08-29 11:23 pm (UTC)

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I picked up a 12WX at the beginning of the year, and I don't think I've drawn anything on paper since then. It really is the best thing I've ever bought as far as art supplies goes.
From: seph_hunter
2009-08-29 11:31 pm (UTC)

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oh man...

Not really paying attention, I quickly glanced at step five's illustration and wondered why you were defecating into the pot.

I'm going to go stand in the corner now.
[User Picture]From: grafxman256
2009-08-30 12:35 am (UTC)

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I'd been wanting a Cintiq for years when I went to Emerald City ComiCon last year and wound up helping the Wacom guy get the 12" set up. I ordered one as soon as I got home. I love it!

I use it as a second monitor so I don't have the task bar and stuff taking up real estate. I draw with smaller strokes, so I don't find myself lacking in room to work versus the 21". I've got a Belkin Nostromo SpeedPad which I've mapped to all of my shortcuts, which lets me switch tools faster than if I had my hand on my keyboard (or the shortcut keys on the tablet). I'm leagues faster on my Cintiq than I was with my Intuos.

Another tip: I'm not a fan of the scratchiness of the default nib on the screen, so I use the felt nib and wear a cotton glove so my hand can slide smoothly across the glass. It feels like I'm air-sketching when I'm all set up, except that I'm actually generating something. :)
[User Picture]From: quirkybird
2009-08-30 01:16 am (UTC)

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My Cintiq is unquestionably one of the best purchases I have ever made. Ever. For anything. I couldn't use a normal tablet anymore without bursting out into frustrated tears.

I got a 12 inch because I like to be able to use it in multiple locations (studio AND home). It's not crazy easy to move around, but you CAN move it around. I just dump it all into my backpack and take it on the bus, no problem.

I also draw small, so the 12 inch it works well with the average size of my pen-strokes.

That said, the 21s are glorious, and a step up in terms of sensitivity. Just not the best match for me!
[User Picture]From: fengi
2009-08-30 01:32 am (UTC)

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I found your first book in the Downtown Branch of the Chicago Public Library it was on the same shelf as those outsized Popeye collections and lots of other high art comix stuff. It was a very odd experience as I had seen some of the material online and now it was on paper with a library of congress number and everything. Do they send you stats on how many times your book is checked out?
[User Picture]From: chrisschweizer
2009-08-30 02:42 am (UTC)

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I got the big (21, maybe?) Cintiq, and could not imagine trying to get anything done without it now. I still do everything by hand, but touching up scans takes like a twentieth of the time. It's also SO intuitive when it comes to coloring. Lastly, it works as a big, swanky dual monitor.

I picked up Radiator Days, and really enjoyed it! Are you gonna be at SPX?
[User Picture]From: sirtobybelch
2009-08-30 02:57 am (UTC)

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I love your pickle comic. Have you ever thought of doing a cookbook comic? It seems like something that would be up your ally, being a foodie. Anyways it made me want to make pickles.
[User Picture]From: liabra
2009-08-30 03:33 am (UTC)

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On the subject of pickling...try using the same process with garden fresh green beans...they're amaaaazing...Oh, just add some sugar to the brine for a bread and butter sort of flavor.
[User Picture]From: girafeduflamme
2009-08-30 11:55 pm (UTC)

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Crazy, I've been thinking about pickling a lot lately, 'cause I picked up some awesome spicy chowchow (a pickled relish with a lot of different veggies in it) at the farmer's market in Durham, NC, and now I want to eat pickled stuff all the time. They also had pickled watermelon rind which I love times a million, but I'm unemployed so I had to take a pass.

I don't have any personal experience with pickling, but chowchow seems like something that would be good if you wound up with a lot of spares of different vegetables, since it tends to involve a ton of different ones, like green tomatoes and onions and cabbage and peppers and just everything good. Just fyi! Plus "chow" in this case at least comes from French "chou," so, cool.
[User Picture]From: animagiblender
2009-08-31 01:58 am (UTC)

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Hi, I just added you!

I've been main-lining your comics like crazy ever sense someone showed them to me. I love your stuff!
From: erict59
2009-08-31 06:16 pm (UTC)

Garrison K

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from prairie home companion had a great essay about getting his grandmother to show him her pickle recipe.
[User Picture]From: ghostcat80
2009-08-31 06:47 pm (UTC)

Get the Cintiq.

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I have the 12WX Cintiq, and I couldn't be happier with it. I used a 6x8 Intuos 2 for about 6 years before I got it, and I can't imagine going back now. Get the bigger one if you are used to/need the extra space to draw smooth lines, but if you are ok with using a 6x8 Intuos, the 12WX Cintiq will feel like home. (I find the bigger tablets are a bit too big for my taste) The other benefit to getting the smaller one is that the 12WX is reasonably portable. You won't be whipping it out on the subway, since it requires its own power source and has a converter box, but you can pack it and all its accouterments in a decent sized laptop bag, so it's nice for road trips and you can set it up in a hotel room without too much fuss.
[User Picture]From: alisa5179
2009-08-31 07:55 pm (UTC)

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I started using a Cintiq at work in 2005 (I'm an animator) and it was incredibly intuitive to pick up. I also hadn't had much wacom experience at the time. Some people don't like "seeing their hand in the way" when using a cintiq. (I don't know how those people draw on paper...)

I bought a second hand 12 inch Cintiq a few years ago for home and it was fabulous. My job upgraded to the 21" and though at first I thought it was a bit excessive, as Andy was saying, having extra space for all your tool bars and windows is really great on the larger monitor. My wonderful boyfriend bought me a 21" for Christmas last year, and it'd be hard to go back to anything smaller. I'd highly recommend it if you can't tell. :) Also, it has a swivel mechanism on the back so you can tilt the screen at whatever angle is comfortable for you, including vertically.

Also, making pickles is the best! I just bought some cukes myself, though they may be eaten before they can become pickles.
From: perpetualflights.blogspot.com
2009-09-01 02:03 am (UTC)

Best purchase ever!

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I love love love my cintiq. I do all my inking and coloring with it. I have both the 12x and the 21x and while there is definitely a difference between the two (working big and working little) I would recommend either. I have been taking the smaller one with me to my limited residency MFA and while it's definitely not very portable, the larger one is almost impossible to schelp anywhere because of its bulk. I use it almost exclusively with Sketchbook Pro and it's wonderful with the interface - I rarely have to touch my keyboard. Photoshop works great with it. I also wear a cotton glove (I bought a pack at a photography store) sometimes if it's a very hot and sweaty day but I haven't found it to be too much of an issue.
From: (Anonymous)
2009-11-22 02:45 pm (UTC)

Quotation of Plato

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They certainly give very strange names to diseases.
Quotation of Plato
From: pickellover
2010-10-25 10:47 am (UTC)

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How are you getting on with your Cintiq? Im a designer and thinking of getting one but ive heard they dont seem to last to long, can i ask how long you have had your Cintiq and if it still works? Thanks Cumbria Locksmiths