This is the facade of the entrance to the commuter train station “Botanischer Garten” in Berlin. It is one example of the public transport architecture in Berlin, especially regarding the commuter train (S-Bahn). Many of the stations are under the ground, like subway stations, but some of them are above the ground, like the S-Bahn station “Botanischer Garten“.
The S-Bahn is part of the Berlin public transport system. It connects the outskirts of Berlin with the center. Normally trains stop at the stations every 10 minutes. On some lines you have a train coming every three minutes.
Some of the stations are quite old. The S-Bahn came into existence in 1924, and in 1929 the electrification of the existing suburban lines was completed.
The S-Bahn Station Botanischer Garten (in English: botanical garden) is part of the line from the north of Berlin going straight down to the south. As you can see on the photo there is a lot of green on both sides of the line – taking the S-Bahn will show you how green Berlin really is!
I’ve subscribed to Havi Brooke’s blog “The fluent self” and one of her blog posts that made me think a lot was the one about “The Book of You“. You’ve got to read that blogpost yourself, but what I took out of it was to very deliberately notice the effects that things I do have on me. I actually write some of them down in my daily journal.
I’d like to share two entries with you. The first is: I need about eight hours of sleep. Some people need less hours to feel good the next day – not me. On Tuesdays I usually go to my English Friends’ club which is an informal meeting at a Chinese restaurant. Most of the people I meet there are freelancers or people who can go to work later. So they usually stay till late in the evening. Many times in the past I felt obliged to stay longer than I thought was good for me, with the effect that I felt lousy next morning when I had to get up early, and sometimes even overslept. Last Tuesday I decided to try an experiment – would getting home earlier and going to bed earlier really help? Well, it did! I got up next morning without problems, didn’t feel lousy at all and the day went well. So ! now know: Getting eight hours of sleep is important for me, it does me good, and I will try to get them as many times as possible.
The second thing I learnt this week by experimenting was: The pomodoro method is good for me. This method consists in putting up a timer for 25 minutes and to focus on a certain activity for that time until the alarm clock rings.25 minutes are one pomodoro, and of course you can do as many of them as you like. I applied this method today at work, and felt good with it. I was productive, and I had the impression that I spent the work day the right way. Actually I am doing it now while writing this blogpost. I am using a chrome extension called “Timer tab” at home, and on work I used the e.ggtimer.com.
Have you ever thought of writing a book of you? And if yes, what would go in it?
Today I decided to try something new with Inkscape – working with layers. I know photoshop layers, and I know how important they are. I haven’t used them in Inkscape so far, but today I did, with the result you can see above.
The second thing I tried out is gradients. Gradient is also something I know from photoshop, but here in Inkscape it doesn’t work the way it does in Photoshop, and everytime I tried to apply gradients I got frustrated because I failed to achieve the result I wanted to achieve. However I am a rather stubborn person, so I tried it again and this time I found out how to do it. WooHoo!
So another important lesson was learnt: Creativity needs endurance and perseverance. Don’t give up too early!
I took this photograph early this year while visiting some friends who lived out of Berlin. The region around Berlin is beautiful – small dark lakes, little villages and old churches.
The swan had approached us hoping that we would feed him. It took some time till he realised that there was nothing dropping from above, and then he or she (I guess it is a “he”) turned around and slowly swam off.
I did that on Wednesday evening in Inkscape. First I had an idea about the colours – I wanted to have a go at the colour red. So I went to colourlovers.com and created a palette. I wanted to create something Indian Summer like, warm and full of life.
When I got the palette I downloaded it and began to play around in Inkscape. I selected the star shape and created stars in various sizes, colours, arranged them this way and that way. In the middle of the whole process I got frustrated and deleted some stars, but I didn’t want to give up. I then tried out the pencil tool and created those yellow ribbons, put them on that star, changed their direction. It took me about 1 1/2 hour to create the design as you can see it above, and even after that time I had to force myself to let it be.
The funny thing is that in traditional art I focus on drawing, not on painting. But with digital art offering the opportunity to work on a piece until you think it is presentable I feel a certain love for colours now!