Friday, August 30, 2013

WWJD? What Would Jewel Do?

Regarding the once-ubiquitous "WWJD/What Would Jesus Do?" bracelets, I've always joked that what Jesus would do is probably not wear a bracelet that said "What Would I Do". This time I'm making a Jewel-related bracelet (the second of two Jewel-related comics in fact!), which helps me get through the day by thinking about what advice the folk-country singer-songwriter might give in times of trouble. Here are some of her possible responses.
Me: Jewel, I'm applying for a teaching position, what should I do?
Jewel: Follow your heart, your intutition. It will lead you in the right direction.

Me: Jewel, which watch should I wear today?
Jewel: Your hands are small, you know. For a guy. 

Me: I just slept with my boyfriend's ex, what do I do, Jewel?
Jewel: Stop breaking my heart with these foolish games!

Me: Jewel, I just bought this WWJD bracelet at your new concert. What do you think?
Jewel: What I want to know is, who will save your soul from this incredibly clever marketing scheme? That's what I wanna know.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Beryl Crow

All Be3Al2Si6O18 wants to do is have some fun. I've got a feeling, she's not the only one. 

Thursday, August 08, 2013

A Knight Without Jewel

Don't get me wrong, I'm actually quite a fan of Jewel. I think she's pretty amazing. She's made music in a million different styles, AND written her own book of poetry. I once saw her perform at a casino, and despite the crappy interior, she was totally the boss of that show. And she can yodel.
This comic comes to you from the guy who once owned Jewel's book of poetry...on tape. Still, I would like to take Jewel's poetry and chop it up, maybe make an avant-garde electronic composition with it, and turn it into something else completely. It would probably garner a very very small audience (probably me and my boyfriend, and that's about it). I don't know if Ms. Kilcher would approve, but I hope she'd find it pretty amusing.

Wednesday, August 07, 2013

Evolution of Websites

For all y'all who want to see more of what I've been doing, with a few more pictures and a few less words, you should know that I have a website! I entered the world of personal composer website around 2006, when I decided it was time to get my professional act in gear, having seen other composer's sites like Nico Muhly and John Adams, so I hired a friend to custom-make me a website. I got a great discount from my friend, he gave me a one-hour tutorial, and after that I had little to no idea of what I was doing. But it had a darn good brand identity, and a snazzy color scheme, so I was proud of that! And all of my work was in one place: my blog, my compositions, my collages (at the time I was doing more works on paper and not jewelry design), and updates about performances. I thought it was so super new-fangled that you could go read about a particular composition and click a link to hear a sound sample of the piece. Nowadays it seems the norm to have audio and video embedded everywhere, a slick interface, and of course, a seamless connection to Facebook.

Things got complicated with NathanHallWebsite1.0 of course. Trying to edit HTML without skillz is just a hot mess 'o characters and numbers and %nbsp%. I'd try and change a heading and my text would fly off the page. I'd try and change one word to bold and all the red and grey backgrounds would turn purple. I ended up with a website just barely holding itself together.

Now, thanks to a few tech-savvy friends to fix the back-end server details, I have a new site run off of Wordpress which makes everything fairly straightforward again. There's bright and organized pictures, a pretty handy interface to change the design, and I can still use audio and video in the same ways. I do wish for my own web developer one day, where I can just hand things off to him or her (or robot?). But for now, I hope my efforts continue to keep me a little better connected to the bigger world out there of people who might be interested in what I do and supporting my work in so many ways. Let me know how you like the new!

Thursday, August 01, 2013

Jennifer Topaz

#1 on the Gem and Mineral/Hip-Hop Crossover charts.


I have so many projects and random part-time activities that sometimes I lose sense of the timeline of how long I've been doing them. I've been writing music for nineteen years! I've been drawing random comics for about eight. I also realized it's been nine years since I sold my first piece of jewelry, in August of 2004; a sparkly pair of pink earrings, I believe. My, how things have changed, and I have a little more business sense too. I've gone through two websites, have started an Etsy site for jewelry, have started a Bandcamp page for selling recordings, I've experimented with combining media, and hopefully every once and a while I still put up a comic on here. (I do love to have a good laugh about grammar, hot pants, and/or witless tourists).
Thanks to everyone who's bought, listened, gifted, worn, promoted, paid attention to, or just admired my works over the years, it keeps me going! For next year's ten-year jewelry anniversary and twenty-year composing anniversary, I should put something extravagant together that celebrates everything. Maybe a giant sculptural jewelry piece that plays music? An elegant piece of music about pink sparkly earrings? I've got a year to perfect that idea. In the meantime, a couple new comics are on their way!