Saturday, 26 May 2012

I cannot wait for Skulduggery Pleasant: Kingdom Of The Wicked

The cover is gorgeous. As a graphic designer, I'm supposed to look into these
types of design and be fairly critical. However, I cannot fault this. The illustration
is amazing & detailed. I want this book now! Illustration by Tom Percival.
I cannot wait for Skulduggery Pleasant: Kingdom Of The Wicked. I simply cannot. Really. I want to read it now... it looks awesome. The Skulduggery Pleasant series of books has long been one of my favourite series of books by irish author Derek Landy. At this point I had read all 6 books so far 3 times over and have actually just started the second Skulduggery Pleasant book 'Playing With Fire' which is possibly my favourite out of all of them... possibly. The book stars a magical and powerful skeleton detective (Mr. Pleasant) & his  young apprentice (Ms. Valkyrie Cain). The pair take centre stage alongside a huge cast of characters, in a magical world so close to our own in Ireland, and yet so far away from our understanding.

There have been so many epic moments in the series, none of which I will deprive you of. I won't deprive you of the all powerful evil gods that were banished thousands of years ago (beings so evil in fact, that their shadows cast away from them), nigh-indestructible half-gods that have stitched up using and deadly ancient animal organs, necromancers whose abilities reach so far that only pointing at you will kill you, vampires that pull themselves out of their human skins, large men with visor covered faces wielding massive scythes with deadly grace and skill, a genderless creature in limbo with a scab where his nose should be & even an unstoppable masked assassin who can cause your bones to shatter with a touch... who loves his cat... which he has simply called 'cat'. Honestly, the universe Derek has laid out before us is amazing, funny, in-depth, cleverly connected with well thought out plots & paradoxical moments and some of the best cliff-hangers possible in a story. I, who loves and has always loved fiction, science fiction, thriller, action & adventure & fantasy books for many a year now, have become so engaged in this series. Honestly, there is something in each of these books for everybody.

Don't believe me? Check out the reviews from just the first book:

'Skulduggery Pleasant serves up a thoroughly satisfying blend of humour, magic and adventure. Once you've met Stephanie and Skullduggery, you'll be clamouring for a sequel.' Rick Riordan

‘Hugely enjoyable – a thrill-a-minute adventure.' Jonathan Stroud

'It's exciting, pacy, nicely handled and fun. I sincerely hope Landy revisits these characters.'
Philip Ardagh, Guardian

'A gripping debut.' Phil Hogan, Observer

"A remarkably accomplished debut with wonderful dialogue." Robert Dunbar, Irish Times

"[Landy's] fight scenes are perfectly pitched. His characters are exceptionally well drawn and delightfully colourful… Reading [this book] is like riding a rollercoaster.” Irish Independent

"Landy's witty style will win him fans of all ages… With writing of this standard, a rattling plot and definite potential for cross-over appeal, it's a good job Harry's [Potter] resigning before he's forcibly retired." Irish Mail on Sunday

"Humour and magic combine in this thrilling adventure." Waterstone's Books Quarterly

"…people in the book world are raving about this book." Glasgow Herald

"It's pacy, it's funny, it's irreverent. The relationship between Skulduggery and Stephanie is tremendously strong. Stephanie is a splendid character – blunt, logical and outspoken… We enjoyed Skkulduggery Pleasant. Muchly. Roll on volume two!" The Book Bag

"A rip-roaring adventure." Irish Sunday Independent

"Full of black humour, super powers, mysteries, murder and mayhem." Carousel

See what I mean? Check out the books for yourself.

As for me, I have purchased the short story 'The End Of The World' & I will be doing a personal Skulduggery project throughout the year.

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Monday, 21 May 2012

A Skyrim Infographic : My Skyrim Journey

I've wanted to create this for a long time now, and finally had the time and ability to create it to the highest standard that I desired. As you can see, it is based on the game Skyrim from The Elder Scrolls series. This infographic displays a numerous amount of information which I have gathered & accumulated in my Skyrim playthrough and allows viewers to clearly see some of the most important statistics that I have gained along the way.

At the top, you can see the race and name of my character from the game, and the title(s) he has held in that game world. The map below shows the whole land I have explored with the locations of Skyrim's main holds and the number of locations I have discovered beneath it. The map is encircled by images of each hold's insignia. The rest is fairly self explanatory, with the appropraite information being displayed. These are adorned with images from the game that I have found (which act as achievement images) to show a certain representation of the stats (eg. the thu'um section uses images that represent achievements/trophies once unlocked in-game). These are also joined by certain objects in the game that correspond to that piece of data (eg. beneath the thu'um is a dragon-wall which is how the player learns thu'um words). I have also created multiple comparative charts of Skyrim's diverse range of colonists and wildlife. Each square on each chart represents 1 foot in height by 1 foot in length to show the height and length of all of Skyrim's denizens. For example, on the animals chart at the bottom of the screen, a rabbit is a foot in height when in comparison to a giant which is over  9 feet taller. All are as accurate as can be based on numerous amounts of data collected from the game and the web. Soon to be the newst edition to my wall... hopefully it'll take A0.

As of May 11th, I may have to update this, as 1: my stats have increased in since I've created this & 2: Dawnguard will be here soon, so maybe I should place the two factions (The Dawnguard & The Vampire creatures) on here. As I am werewolf in this playthrough I cannot become a vampire, so on this poster the vampires will become enemies and the Dawnguard as allies. However, the next playthrough will see me as a creature of the night. Not to mention all the other creatures who will be awaiting us. I will have to see if this does need updating.

Thursday, 17 May 2012

Wednesday, 9 May 2012

Jurassic Park Infographic

For a project at uni, we've had to create an infogarphic based on anything we want. As long as it displays a good amount of information, it is acceptable as a graph. I had started a garph based on the amazing skyrim & use my personal stats to fill the graph with detail. However, I stepped away from it, leaving the Skyrim graphic as a persomal project to explore in the recent future. Instead, I wanted to do something else I'e always loved. That was when I thought of it. One of my all time favourite movies. Jurassic Park. The franchise is amazing & huge, spanning the world over. I had my decision made.

With that, I started. I wanted a graph that shows information and dimensions on the islands where the 3 films are set (all this is based on the movie canon, nothing to do with games and other media).

Also, a a way of mapping the number of people in each film, without including any of the main characters. This is a way of showing something that has never been done before; mapping who lives & dies besides the central characters. You will see no Alan Grant or Ian Malcolm here. You know how Ray Arnold is though right? And Udesky? You'll find out who has lived & died in the Jurassic Park films.

Also, about the dinosaurs themselves. The films are mainly about the dinosaurs, but unless you are a large dino fan like me, you may get bored looking through the advanced information on a species. So I created a simple graph that shows the height & length of the most famous dinosaurs in the series.

The result, with a lot of tweaking, came out fairly well in my opinion.

I'm very happy with it now.