2015 Pigments Painting Award

The Future of Wearable Tech

Technology has been seeping into our lives in different shapes and ways. The ease and convenience that technology is adding into our lives is undeniably a treat for us. Technology has made it possible for engraving multiple functionalities in our lives, thinking of the smartphone, it is a combination of a telephone, a phone book, a directory, a camera so on and so forth. Similarly, smart watches have recently been introduced into our lives to add another wow! factor into our lives.

The first smart watch came into the arena back in the year 2014, after Samsung introduced their first Tizen-powered smartwatch. The competition was continued by the introduction of LG and Motorola’s android smart watches. Apple has been fairly late with their first move after they introduced the Apple watch in April 2015. Let’s shed some light on the current situation and the future of wearable tech.
Why do I need a SmartWatch?
This is the question that might hit your mind if you are thinking of making your move into the Smart Watch world. The use of Smart Watches can be categorized under two umbrellas, notification devices, and health trackers. Ever since, the introduction of the watches, the basic idea or goal behind them is vague. As long as their current use is concerned, they are not a good choice keeping in mind the fact that all the smart watches in the market are at an average price range of $250.
It has been 4 years since the introduction of the first smart watch and there hasn’t been any large-scale advancement in the sector. There are multiple other factors that may keep one from buying a smart watch. Battery life being one of them, Even though there is not much a smart watch these days can accomplish, it barely lasts for a few hours as compared to a traditional wrist watch. Charging a smart watch twice a day might not seem like a good idea to many including myself.
What to Expect?
The world of technology is fairly different when it comes to the definition of the actual use of a product. Thinking of a smartphone, as users, we never thought it would evolve in a way that it would make our lives as dependent on them as they are right now. Several tasks that we used our Personal Computers for initially are now being handled with the aid of the smartphone.
Long story short, smart watches can be the center of our lives when we are able to accomplish more with their use. One such application where smart watches are being thought of as a key is Internet of things or IoT. The idea of controlling each and every light bulb and appliance with the help of a smart watch is truly intimidating and highly attractive.
The year 2017 is being called the year of wearable tech, with several companies floating teasers of their upcoming smart watches. We have our fingers crossed to see what they will surprise us with.

Wired Magazine Article on Wearables


Pebble Time Watch Faces

One of my favorite new pastimes is spending time creating the Pebble Time watch faces and the popular Pebble Classic watch faces. There is a certain amount of gratification when creating the watch faces, personal enjoyment building them, hundreds of downloads, and exposure. All the Pebble Time watch faces that are created are crafted and thought out. Every dial, marking, and even the logo or theme has been designed for brightness and clarity on the small Pebble surface area.

You can create Pebble watch faces several ways. The first is to use the popular and standard programming language “C”  plus use the Pebble compiler or create images and use the Pebble watch face Generator which currently only supports black and white. There is also a color version watch face generator but it is very primitive and offers zero useful features. Whatever method you use, have fun with it. Nothing like using your own watch face that you created on your Pebble. The Pebble staff have also put up some great tutorials on how to build your own custom watch faces.

Pebble Time Watch Faces Need a Watch

All this is great and wonderful but you also need to purchase the watch. Yes, this is a plug for a great company with a new set of great watches coming out in the next few months. Pebble.com Pebble Time 2 , Pebble Classic 2, and Pebble Core. Great time to purchase the orginal classic or Pebble Time.

Official Bulux Tubmariner Watch Face

The Official Bulux Tubmariner analog watch face. Yes, it’s a spoof on the classic Rolex Submariner. Many hours were spent fine-tuning every detail. Everything from the day of the week to the current date. Image created with Photoshop, even the Rolex fonts were used. Have fun and let me know how I can improve this. TUBMARINER 33ft x 3 / 3atm PEBBLE CERTIFIED. Why Bulux? A British cuss word that has no definite meaning. Cannot be used as an insult. Example: Bulux! While hitting your hand with a hammer. The American equivalent would be Sh_t or F_ck.

Get Free Watch Face from Pebble Official Bulux


Crystal Clear Time Original

Quality and clarity is the key when reading the time. I mean if its hard to see, what’s the point. This was created with Photoshop and is super easy to read. Handsome and simple with the date always showing. Enjoy…

Now Offering the White Version because the black original version is so popular.

Get Free Watch Face from Pebble Black Version

Get Free Watch Face from Pebble White Version

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Dump Trump Pebble Watch Face

America is already Great…Simple Digital Dump Trump watch face that is guaranteed to start a conversation …show your support and sport this political statement. It Also comes in a full-color version.

Get Free Watch Face from Pebble Dump Trump 

Splat Analog Watch Face

Splat? What a mess…comes with an analog dial plus date on the lower left, digital time on the lower right corner.

Get Free Watch Face from Pebble Splat Analog

Time Up In Flames

Great graphic that is easily visible. Time moves so fast that at times it feels like it is up in flames. Displays seconds on the upper right-hand corner.

Get Free Watch Face from Pebble Splat Analog

HiFi Digital System

High fidelity digital system was great fun to create. On the top row, we have the Bluetooth and battery indicators. The second-row sports the date, the third row shows the time, and the bottom row shows the seconds. Great fun creating this classic and very popular watch face.

Get Free Watch Face from Pebble HiFi Stereo Watch Face

Analog Adventurer Two

Simple analog design with a battery indicator at the three o’clock position. Sporty and elegant watch face. Once again very easy to read. Looks great on Pebble Classic and Pebble Time.

Get Free Watch Face from Pebble Adventurer Two

Digital Speed Watch Face

Digital speedometer watch face. Simple but effective. Also available in color for Pebble Time.

Get Free Watch Face from Pebble Digital Speed

View All Watch Faces by Nicolas Ray

Stopping Writers Block

Stopping Writers Block

Really outstanding low tech writing tool that just forces you to just write and not worry about editing or concerning yourself with formatting. You can set the time from five minutes up to sixty minutes. The issue is and what is most appealing is, if you pause for more than five seconds, everything is lost and a red screen pops up saying “you lost”. But if you continue on and complete the task, a green screen appears at which time you can highlight and copy the text to paste onto your blog or application. Works well and once you get past the stress, which by the way is the point of this very simple and very effective online app page. Will try to access it via my smartphone. The paragraph below was my first attempt and last a grueling five minutes. The Most Dangerous Writing App [su_divider top=”yes” text=”Go to top” style=”default” divider_color=”#999999″ link_color=”#999999″ size=”3″ margin=”15″ class=””]

Five Minutes Start Attempt 1 – The Most Crazy App
This is the most crazy app that I have had the pleasure of using. It forces you to continuously keep on writing. If you should happen to stop, everything that you just finished working on will vanish into the wind. Very nerve wrecking indeed. Still have almost three minutes left of writing what ever happens to pop into my little mind. So far so good, but if I pause for more than five seconds, this app will self destruct. The wonderful thing is that it will also improve your accuracy when typing and make your workflow progress at a much faster rate. Now with about two minutes left, my brain is really beginning to feel the burn.
Speaking of Bern, Mr Sanders seems to be doing really well. I would really hate it if Trump is our next president and will be prepared to move to Spain In conclusion. Thank You
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Five Minutes Start Attempt 2 – Hindering the Creative Process

Being my second attempt to use this most awkward writers block app, I must be a glutton for punishment. Some may say that doing this will prevent the creative process. The idea does have merit, running against a clock does add the extra pressure and makes you not really focus on the actual topic at hand…the creative process. I may or may not continue to use this or better yet the idea of using my countdown timer on my phone as my indicator thus removing the additional stress associated with this. Currently just writing for the sake of writing and not really paying attention to what is actually being said. Just like that poorly written sentence that was just a  mess. [su_divider top=”yes” text=”Go to top” style=”default” divider_color=”#999999″ link_color=”#999999″ size=”3″ margin=”15″ class=””]

Five Minutes Start Attempt 3 – Ramblings About Evolution of Computers

Trying to discipline myself and eventually attempt to expand the time that I use this app to the full sixty minutes of non stop writing. I did notice that the speed of my typing has increased and would imagine that eventually I would be up to speed and maintain at least a sixty – eighty word per minute speed. This brings me back to freshmen year of high school when I was in typing class, yes typing class which was an elective. In retrospect, that class proved most valuable and was the stepping stone into the computer age. Computers at the time were not even sold in stores but instead were offered at such places as Heath Kit or Tandy. Our first computer which was the as powerful as a cheap calculator cost in the thousands of dollars and as large as a small automobile. My second computer was a Timex Sinclair  and we were able to program in basic. We designed games and some complex binary images. Then the we had a Mac Classic, 286, 386, Pentium, P1, P2, P3, and what ever came after that. Back in the day we knew languages and could make computers actually do some amazing things. Now, we take it for granted that technology is at our finger tips and cost next to nothing. Not having a computer in school is not an option and in most situations is required. [su_divider top=”yes” text=”Go to top” style=”default” divider_color=”#999999″ link_color=”#999999″ size=”3″ margin=”15″ class=””]

PixAds Now On Etsy

Pixads is now available on Etsy and has already demonstrated interest in the community. I personally love Etsy’s Marketplace which is flooded with talent and great taste. The photography and artwork is the perfect venue to show off Pixads images, products, photography, and bits of history that it comes across every once in  a while. The images that are being sold on etsy from Pixads are worth the cost because with every purchase you will receive a link and image plus a review or listing of your business. The post will be on Pixads Blog located at http://pixads.net  Pixads on Etsy https://www.etsy.com/shop/PixAds

Welcome to Pixads on Etsy,,,The unique home of some great photography, unusual crafts, and of course some original art. My name is Nicolas Ray, working artist and antique hunter living in the New York City area. Welcome and Enjoy… https://nicolasray.com/ and http://pixads.net

Evolution of Modern Day T-Shirts Brief History

The History of the T-Shirt

The origin of the t-shirt is actually credited to coal miners. During the 19th century, miners began to cut their one piece underclothes into two separate pieces. This allowed them to easily remove the top piece from beneath their shirt when they became too hot. Many of these underclothes came with buttons. Therefore, there were two t-shirt versions, one with and one without buttons.

Soon after, the United States Navy would issue the first ready made t-shirts to enlisted men. These shirts were to be worn underneath the military uniform. These were of the crew neck variety, so that they could not be visibly seen beneath the military dress shirt. The purpose of these t-shirts was quite simply to allow the solider to be able to remove their top shirt when the situation dictated, and only soil the t-shirt which was much less expensive.

Elsewhere, t-shirts were being used for the same practical reasons during the industrial revolution. They were cheap to produce, and certainly offered extra warmth to those who might otherwise have none. It would not be until the United States Army arrived in Europe that the t-shirt would truly be seen by many, and quickly rise to popularity. From there, it continued to spread throughout the world.

T-shirts continued to be used in this manner, and were also used as underclothing for workers, for quite some time. It would not be until the 1950’s when the t-shirt began to be worn for anything other than practicality. Once movie star Marlon Brando was spotted on the big screen wearing one in, “A Streetcar Named Desire” t-shirts quickly become a piece of clothing that was no longer hidden behind other shirts, and became a stand alone clothing item.

Plain T-Shirt Metamorphosis

Plain t-shirts soon were transformed. Soon a host of colors, patterns, and characters would show up on t-shirts everywhere. Disney is credited for creating some of the first character t-shirts during the 1950’s. As if t-shirts were not popular enough during the 1950’s, the 1960’s took them to an entirely new level as bands and rock stars began wearing them. A perfect example would be Grateful Dead t-shirts, which “Dead Heads” purchased huge quantities of.

T-shirts evolved even further during the 1970’s and 1980’s, as screen printing was created. This process made it quite easy to create massive amount of printed t-shirts in a very short of time. Soon there would be t-shirts that were used as advertisements, for political messages, to represent sports teams, and much more. By this time, the sky was the limit for t-shirts.

View and Purchase One of my T-shirts

Today, we see t-shirts of all kinds. While they are still used as undergarments, they have well solidified their place in the clothing world as a must have item. From humble beginnings, the practical t-shirt has risen. We now wear t-shirts as a way to express our sense of style, as well as how comfortable they are. Though no one has officially taken count, there are likely millions of different t-shirts in the world today. Finding the ones that speak to you should be absolutely no problem.

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Pixads Domain

“Pixel, a solitary dot that combined with other pixels makes up the whole picture.”
Funny…this makes me think of the similarity between a solitary pixel and an individual person in that both need others to become a complete image. Pixels have always been part of our lives in magazines, newspapers, and all visual media devices. Hello and welcome, my name is Nicolas Ray Founder of PixAds…

Switching Hosting Providers

Hostmonster One of the Worst Hosting Providers

After tens of years with my host provider and thousands of dollars and hundreds of domains under my belt, switching was not an easy task.  Over the course of the last year,  give our take,  service from Hostmonster really diminished to the point of frustration. Customer service took hours to get through,  usually with no results.  On several occasions sites that had thousands of pages and took years to fine tune where all of a sudden riddled with error messages and databases that no longer functioned. In essence they could not fix the issue and opted to reset which cost me years of time and work. Read Customer Complaints

Recently, I kept receiving emails that said my databases exceeded system specifications. No problem, started removing and compacting the files but still needed assistance. Called Hostmonster and waited with speakerphone on so as not to waste more time. Forty five minutes passed and finally spoke to a IT service representative. Explaining the situation as he viewed my files, he informs me that there has been phishing emails going around. I mentioned that I checked the header of the email and it originated from Hostmonster. I asked if he could delete any unused databases, which he said he could not. After hanging up without unsatisfactory results, my sites were all down, my service was suspended. I was crazy angry and had to call again. After more time, spoke to yet another customer service representative that said I have exceeded my database limits and would have to upgrade service to continue. I was super hot now, hung up and started deleting databases removing websites. Called again and they scanned the databases and of course un-suspended my service. Hung up and immediately started saving by exporting all my files and sites.

GoDaddy Provider Makes Hosting Interesting Again

Went to my domain manager and unlocked all my domains. Found GoDaddy, signed up for the fasted most powerful plan and started transferring domains out of Hostmonster to GoDaddy. Easy, but costly because you have to renew each domain name also. Customer service at GoDaddy is fantastic with people that actually know what they are doing. I now have almost all my sites back up and running utilizing some of the best organized cPanel apps. There is a slight learning curve with GoDaddy but we’ll worth it. My sites work blazing fast and service is exceptional.

Hostmonster started off well and was rated one of the best but has not kept up. Please do yourself a favor and stay away. Also, they have other companies under different names which is a bit shady if you ask me Will update you on those. Will not miss poor customer service from Hostmonster.

Benjamin Moore Aura Paint Review

Exceptional Paint Review

Welcome to the Benjamin Moore Aura paints product review. Every once in a while a new paint is introduced into the market place that exceeds perfection and sets new standards on how painted finishes are applied.

The results, if properly executed are breath taking, rich in color, and exciting.  The old cliché that it “glows” could not be more true especially with a dificult dark color palette. The application of deep base colors such as  wine red or a hunter green over white walls would have taken many coats plus primer to achieve the desired result.

The Aura product is self priming and can be re-coated in one hour or so enabling you to complete a project much faster and with greater accuracy and success.

The finished walls will dry to the touch in a couple of hours but require twenty four hours to fully cure. The finish will have a very slight sheen, similar to a matte finish which is what gives it that special warmth and durability.

As mentioned, The Benjamin Moore Aura finish is self priming, but from my extensive experience in the coatings industry priming should still be completed on new sheetrock or walls that have had extensive wall repairs and patches. Small patches such as nail holes or color changes on walls or ceilings require no prime and may be finished with Aura.

The application of the finish has a slight learning curve but is easily mastered. When cutting in by brush apply a nice wet coat with your last stroke going into the wet paint. If a spot is accidently missed try to resist the temptation of trying to paint it until dry otherwise you can remove paint or “tear” it. Tearing is when the paint is just begining to set and you go back over with a brush not fully loaded resulting in removal or sagging of the painted surface. The same rule applies once you start rolling the walls out, try not to back into the area that has begun to set but instead catch the miss on your next coat. To achieve professional results complete a fast sand with 220 paper which takes just a couple minutes and serves as a way to perform a final inspection before the last coat is applied.

When it comes to the cost anyalisis of Aura paints it is priced ten to twenty dollars more per gallon then regular house paints.  But once you start weighing all the factors you quickly realize that its restrictive cost is actually a bargin that works out to be less expensive and faster. One factor especially with dark colors is spread rate or surface area to paint.  Lets take for example a room which messures 15×18 with 8 foot ceilings. Regular flat wall paint times two would equal almost two gallons plus prime. The Aura only requires one gallon and no prime. Assuming the average cost of a good quality paint is twenty seven dollars and a gallon of prime is seventeen dollars. Your materials cost would be just over seventy  dollars verses the fifty dollars for Aura – you just saved twenty dollars.  Also, in our busy hectic lives time is a commodity, so the removal of the need to prime plus the ability to re-coat in just one hour is a huge savings in time.

When the paint dries and the trim is painted and all the furniture, artwork, and flooring is back in place…the room is complete.  An extreme sense of pride of yet another project executed without flaw.

Benjamin Moore Aura paints just make life easier.”


Review by Nicolas Ray of Pigments Painting http:\pigmentspaint.com