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Flow

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Everything posted by Flow

  1. I also decided to nix the google ad for the time being. It was, actually, kind of uglifying the site, and really it just earns pennies, pretty much.
  2. I should add a link for that, really. The store link was intended for people to buy their own copies of the mini; not the painted mini itself. But - I don't see any harm of people posting a painted mini and then wanting to link back to their store. I'll add a new field soon.
  3. As mentioned - this is WAY better than table top standard. Table top is probably just getting paint on the thing; this model was done really well. Excellent job!
  4. I actually love brush on varnish. I think Tester's Dullcoat is probably fine and would do the job well; I just like being able to control the amount of varnish and doing it with a brush seems to allow me to do that (so I tell myself). I think this is definitely something a matte varnish of some sort would work.
  5. Kind of. Sort of. It's on a VPS server; better than shared hosting but not as good as a dedicated server. A dedicated server costs lots of $$$, and for that alone the sluggishness may have to endure (though if I can find a way to make things better, I will). (To be fair - the other thing that could speed it up is to completely recode it in a better framework. This would be a "non-trivial" upgrade, though likely would help speed a lot).
  6. Kind of. Sort of. It's on a VPS server; better than shared hosting but not as good as a dedicated server. A dedicated server costs lots of $$$, and for that alone the sluggishness may have to endure (though if I can find a way to make things better, I will). This feels kind of tricky to me, as it seems oh so very subjective. One person's "Master" could easily be another's "Intermediate". I can try to come up with some descriptions; if anyone has some suggestions, I'd love to hear them. As far as changing submission rank, this is the one thing I left as disabled upon editing. It's for the obvious reason; a person could submit at Novice, garner a lot of votes, and then switch it to Master and appear to have a glorious Master mini with lots of positive votes. I could allow it to change and wipe out the votes, or - in the existing system - there isn't much wrong with re-submitting the same mini at a higher rank and seeing how it does.
  7. Well heck, that ball of twine unrolled easier than I thought it would. I think it's already fixed - someone who's not an admin needs to test it. Mini's uploaded should go straight to published for the time being.
  8. But it's far more user-friendly to allow registered users to post their stuff and then moderate the trolls. It's far less frustrating on your true users. Since you are already moderating the entries to be added it's just as easy to moderate the ones that need to be summarily deleted and banned. You've got a point. I'll change it. I need to unwind the ball of thread to undo that, but it shouldn't be too much. I suppose if it ever becomes a "real" problem I can add it back.
  9. You're right - this isn't quite correct. Voting on your own stuff shouldn't be mandatory. I'll likely change this today.
  10. Oh it's just one eentsy teensy google ad. If this really is a major stumbling block, I'd likely remove it. I honestly want this to be a helpful community tool; I admit hoping that it'd earn two dollars a month to pay for server expenses. This site will never get me rich, it's not my intention to even try - it was just added in case it earns a couple bucks for the bill. The registration was always for Minirater - the text instructions were a typo (a carry over from a template I'd used). You're right about the privacy policy (nice catch!), and that is now in (standard Google template). The point about the ratings is a quandary. The issue is that previous votes can *and do* influence a person's rating. By hiding existing ratings, you're helping people to make unbiased votes. But, I do understand the problem. One issue is that it requires you vote on them to see the ratings *even if it is your own miniature*. I'll likely remove that requirement at least.
  11. Yar! That's not good. I'll fix that. Is there another page where minis show up? This is the only sticking point ... waiting on a person to push the button to make your submission live. If you admin approved the account registration, then perhaps the submission wouldn't need the wait. They only show up on your personal page, and only when you are looking at them (another user's account will only see your published content on your own page). The unpublished only shows up for the submitter and the admin. I realize this step is an annoyance, but it seems like a reasonable troll defense. You just know that someone, someday, is going to think it's funny to upload something obnoxious and inappropriate.
  12. Based upon the discussion in fair and better mini voting system thread, I decided to get off of my butt and give it a shot. I took suggestions from the thread and came up with The Minirater (which to me rhymes with "The Disintegrator" but hopefully won't be as unpleasant). The idea is that this rater provides means to vote on a finer grain of things, including basing, blending, shading and highlighting, and other aspects. Voters must be registered (no hidden sniping) and you must also have submitted at least one mini to vote. Please give it a shot! Feedback welcome and I'm totally open to changes based upon user experience. I want this to be a fun little tool where we can get a more precise group opinion (at least better than the generic '1-10') on miniature accomplishments.
  13. Okay - I did it. Made in nine days. It is very much beta and I expect there to be bugs (bugs - there are always bugs). http://www.minirater.com/ Feedback extremely welcome! I'm interested in making this the mini voting system that people always wanted but never had. I'm hoping this initial release is not terrible. I should probably plug this in its own thread - what would be the best subforum to do so? General?
  14. Good start! My guess is that the shading was done with an ink. If this is true - my advice would be to try to simply use a darker color to shade flesh, rather than an ink. Inks are naturally shiny and can do well with metal or other 'glossy' things; but the gloss can be jarring in the case of flesh or other naturally matte surface. Though I think it's also true that a matte varnish could flatten out the gloss, so this might work just as well really.
  15. I think everyone at the library has a Prime subscription. Since it's also my 'netflix' and I order a lot of stuff through amazon, it's more than worth it (I also pay for stuff through my amazon visa...triple points to spend...on amazon!). Anyway. I like amazon. Me too. I went prime a month ago as it was free for a month, and I'm hooked. The streaming films plus 2 day free shipping on many items makes it worth it. Bummer is that brush doesn't qualify for the prime free shipping.
  16. I love the W&N Series 7 - but here's a shopping q. I've seen them around listed as "Water Color" brush. Example: "Winsor & Newton Series 7 Kolinsky Sable Water Colour Brushes 3/0" http://www.amazon.com/Winsor-amp-Newton-Kolinsky-Brushes/dp/B0013E68TY/ref=sr_1_8?ie=UTF8&qid=1375392338&sr=8-8&keywords=Winsor+%26+Newton+Series+7 Is this the same W&N Series 7 that doesn't list "Water Color", or is this a different one? I'm guessing they're the same, but wouldn't want to be let down. (Also - on that link - the $8.99 isn't bad, at least until you realize how much they want for shipping - yikes!).
  17. I actually drilled* my thumb the other day. It - hurt. It still does. *stabbed is more like it. Those bits can be sharp!
  18. Okay - so it *is* a little arbitrary, as really the artist can choose on their own the precise position of 'notional light sources'. Typically I've approached highlights and shading as if there is a light source beaming down on the mini (e.g., the sun), and my desk lamp provides a great guide for doing this. It seems this is really a standard - so many miniatures are painted with a top-down imagined light source. But the positioning of reflections on NMM blades like this has been confusing me as they don't seem to follow that same pattern (necessarily) but still often look really good.
  19. 1.) I love this. It has tons of character and you really are talented. 2.) I have an NMM question and I'm cheap and lazy and like free advice (this means I'm trying to avoid buying the very much suggested L2PK for NMM). I understand blending. I understand that the sword is simply using blended greys and whites to create the illusion of metal. But - how do you determine the pattern? Meaning this - the left side of the blade (as you look at it) is dark/light/dark from top to bottom, and the opposite side is the...opposite. Light/dark/light from top to bottom. I suppose I understand why one side is the reflective opposite of the other, but was it arbitrary that the left side was dark/light/dark? Meaning - could you just have easily done light/dark/light on the left side and the opposite on the right? What sort of logic goes into how the pattern is determined? I have a feeling I am seriously over-thinking the NMM here but I'm just trying to wrap my little monkey brain around how the pattern is chosen. The effects are self-evident and look really good. I need to learn to do this.
  20. It *is* intimidating, and it isn't as bad. I was bothered by the idea as well. It's something you just have to dive into. I've pinned a number of miniatures now and feel much more casual about it. The pin vises drill rather slowly, so it is pretty easy to keep the hole where you want it and actually damaging the mini is unlikely. The one area where I'm still iffy is with really tiny tiny pieces; maybe just need to find smaller bits, but drilling into really tiny bits spooks me. As a suggestion for folks clipping wire and having the small end fire across the room - hold the wire down into a drinking cup and then clip it. The small piece will fire straight down to the bottom of the cup and will rattle around. I've never lost one doing it that way.
  21. Don't be hard on yourself - offering constructive criticism is really valuable and I do think that a lot of the painters here really appreciate it (me included!). As you said, this is a great community, and I think as long as criticism is positive and constructive, it is never a bad thing.
  22. Alright - the general opinion seems to be leaning towards a separate 'Overall' scale, which I think is fine. I also actually like the idea of a smaller scale (i.e., 1-5), *especially* since there are multiple ranks. I really see your point and I do believe something like this needs to be done, though it does make requirements a little goofy. The front page will include a searchable table (really, it will be made up entirely of said table) that can be reordered (among other things) on scores - but how to reorder on scores, if a user cannot see the total score until they have voted? I *do* think the score should be hidden at least in the "voting booth", as you are completely right - people are very much influenced by the opinions of others. Maybe the main table can be sortable on scores; however, the scores will still not show up unless the individual has voted on them. This would actually be yet another design encouragement for people to vote, as voting would reveal how the miniature is doing on the whole.
  23. Here's a question - being that users can be rated on various aspects of a miniature (e.g., color selection, blending, etc.), how might the 'overall' rating be reached? Should a voter be allowed to choose an 'overall' rating, or should it be the average of all of the other ratings? Meaning, if someone votes an 8, 7, and 6 for color selection, blending, and basing, then the overall score could be 7 (an average of those three) or it could be chosen by the voter and be anything at all.
  24. This is an interesting idea and I've been mentally dancing around it myself; the idea is to reward 'fair and honest' voters while diminishing individuals who are a bit more troll-like. But, would we also diminish the votes of those who always score high? That seems silly and not something I'd want to do. It also could be that the routine to average rankings tosses out the outliers entirely, which would be an immediate way of diminishing troll-ish voting. Again, though, this would also toss out the high votes.
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