5 Herbs to Avoid If You Want Fertility

For centuries, herbs have been widely used to treat different diseases and symptoms. And these herbs have also been used for fertility. And today, with many people wanting the natural approach to treatment, herbs are becoming popular again. If there are herbs for fertility, you must also be aware of the herbs that you must avoid if you want to conceive.

1. Cinnamon. This is a famous herb for many of its therapeutic benefits. It relieves menstrual cramps and eases difficulty in childbirth. But this is not one of the herbs for fertility. If you ingest cinnamon while pregnant, it can cause premature labor and dilation of the cervix. It is advised not to drink cinnamon added in beverages or to eat this in high doses found in food.

2. Black cohosh. Like cinnamon, black cohosh also has a lot of therapeutic uses. This herb has been used for centuries to treat hot flashes, mood swings, irritability, sleep disturbances, menstrual problems, and uterine spasms. Remember that black cohosh is not one of the herbs for fertility. If you take black cohosh when you are pregnant, this can cause premature labor and dilation of the cervix.

3. Evening primrose. This is one of the herbs for fertility because it improves the quality of cervical fluid. But to affect fertility, this herb must only be taken prior to ovulation. If evening primrose is taken after ovulation, this can cause the uterus to contract and the cervix to dilate. This can cause premature labor or miscarriage. Another therapeutic use of evening primrose is to dilate the cervix during childbirth.

4. Rosemary. This is a popular herb used in cooking sumptuous meals. Rosemary is considered safe to be ingested by pregnant women if added to food. But excessive amounts found in dietary supplements are not recommended. Rosemary has been established to stimulate menstruation and the uterus.

5. Motherwort. Like most herbs, motherwort has a lot of benefits. It is used to balance hormone levels and to normalize the menstrual cycle. Furthermore, motherwort is also used to treat anxiety, heart disease, and palpitation. It is also a great herb to soothe tension and stress even among pregnant women. Although motherwort can be considered as one of the herbs for fertility, it is recommended not to be used during the first 6 months of pregnancy. This is because motherwort is a uterine stimulant which can cause premature labor and miscarriages. Because of this, you must remember that motherwort must also be avoided.

These are the 5 herbs to avoid if you want fertility. Remember that not all herbs are for fertility. Different herbs have different functions and effects. If you want to use herbs, it is best to consult a herbalist and your OB-GYN regarding using these.



Source by Eddy Wai KK

Digital Art Explained

The popularity of digital art is increasing every year as the technology required is increasingly becoming readily available to everyone. Once the domain of graphic designers or artists such as Andy Warhol is now becoming a common way to create artwork. No other medium would let you erase 100 times, without harming your canvas in the slightest.

This article will explain the different styles of digital art and will discuss each category in a little detail to help clear up some of the confusion. Anyone new to digital art will no doubt have encountered terms such as ‘vector’, ‘Pixel’ or ‘mixed media’ art but may well have not been able to access a clear explanation. As is always the way with art, there is always some interpretation and the way I have chosen to categorise the art styles might not suit everyone.

Digital art can be divided into 5 main styles, Mixed Media, Vector, Fractal, Digital Painting and Pixel:

Mixed media or integrated art

Since the arrival of Photoshop in the 90s, mixed media or integrated art has been rolled out to the masses. Mixed media is exactly what its name suggests; it is the merging of many art styles such as painting, photography, drawing and digital. Using programs such as Photoshop artists are able to combine these art forms with often amazing results. One popular style of mixed media is ‘Pop art’, led by the Andy Warhol portrait styles that consist of using a computer program to add bright colours to the image and often align multiple panels together to form blocks of 4 or 9 images in different colours. Mixed Media is often seen in digital abstract art.

Vector art

One of the most popular digital art techniques, a better term for it might be “vector-based art,” meaning art created using a vector-based program such as Illustrator or Freehand or Corel Draw. The artist uses vector drawing software and creates the image totally in a virtual environment. The style makes use of shapes which are outlined and can be filled with various colors and patterns; this usually produces a harder edged or graphic look. The signature flat colours and clean lines are easy to spot and quick to grab attention making them popular with advertisers looking to get the attention of the public.

Fractal art

Fractal art has been around for a while but is seeing resurgence of late. Examples of fractals can be found in the natural world however in terms of digital art it is art created entirely using mathematical formulae; they are infinite in their ability to be viewed in ever increasing detail. The closer you look the more detail there is, as you zoom into the image. Fractal art is usually created using fractal generating software, the program has three main phases: setting parameters of appropriate fractal software, executing the possibly lengthy calculation and evaluating the product.

Digital Painting

Digital painting is an art form in which traditional painting techniques such as watercolor, oils, impasto, etc are applied using digital software. Digital painting is different to many other forms of digital art in that it is created without using a template or computer generated model. The artist uses painting techniques to create the digital painting directly onto the computer. The digital art software program uses traditional techniques such as brush strokes and colour blending to mimic the physical media. Styles available are increasingly diversified but include pastels, watercolour, oils, charcoals and acrylic to name just a few.

Pixel art

In amongst all these ground breaking digital art forms Pixel art a resurgence of old school pixel techniques is proudly celebrating the humble beginnings of computer art. It is a retro digital art style that is making a comeback. When seen, most people immediately remember their old commodore 64 or Atari graphics, indeed these old computers and video games all use pixel technology. Pixel art is drawn pixel by pixel in minute detail usually using a very limited colour palette and primitive computer graphics tools. One of the more popular programs is Microsoft Paint, this program hasn’t been updated for years however it is a perfectly suitable tool for creating pixel art.



Source by Gary Klungreseth

Advantages and Disadvantages of Textbook Rental

Thinking of buying the required textbooks in college? Wait! Don’t do that just yet. There are ways to save on college textbooks. You don’t need to shell out as much as a thousand a year for your textbooks. You can save by renting from textbook rental sites that are getting more popular as new textbook prices increases over the years. Textbook rental can be done by just logging on to textbook rental sites and picking the books you need for your subjects. These books will be ship to you and you can return them after the rental period.

Here are the advantages of textbook rental:

1. You save money – This is the number one factor when deciding whether to buy or rent college textbooks. It has been proven that you can really save by renting. Depending on the textbook rental site you choose, you can save up to 85% by renting rather than buying. This would help you stretch your budget by leaps and bounds. If you have extra time, you can scour the net to get discount coupon codes to get further discounts or more perks when renting. Taking the time to do your research and looking for the best sites can save you the most money.

2. You save time – Buying online can help you save time and energy. You need not go visit several bookstores to complete your college textbook requirement. You only need to browse through the large selection of books that textbook rental sites offer, choose the ones you need, checkout, type in your discount coupon code and rent. It is easy to do and you can do it in the littlest time possible at the comfort of your home. By doing so, you also save transportation and gasoline cost.

3. You save trees and the environment – Using rented textbooks will decrease the amount of paper use thus saving the trees and the environment. This is important today as we now live in a country where each person contributes and tries hard to be eco-friendly. You can save thousands of trees by renting textbooks rather than buying new ones.

4. You help the community – You may wonder how you can help the community by renting textbook. If you look closely at the different textbook rental sites, you will notice that most of them offer to help the community every time you rent from them. Some of the programs include planting a tree for each textbook rental and donation to partner organizations.

Disadvantage of Textbook Rental:

With textbook rental, advantages outweighs the disadvantages. There is only one disadvantage – you will not be able to use them as a reference book once you’re rental period is up and you have returned them to the rental site. Another which is not really a disadvantage but can be a problem is when you don’t return the books on time. This can cause you your savings since you have to pay for the book extension. So, better make sure to follow the rental procedure to get most of your savings.



Source by Jacob I King

What’s the Difference Between 2D and 3D Anyway?

Isn’t it obvious? Well, apparently not quite, when you consider how many people are still struggling with this topic!

The first concept you must grasp is that 3D means 3 dimensional and 2D means 2 dimensional. Now before you think I’m stating the obvious, let me go on to say that the 3D and 2D in animation refer to the dimension in which the animation was created. Ahhhh. The plot thickens eh?

For 2D animation, everything happens on a 2 dimensional platform. Pictures are flat, without depth and offer only one perspective. Objects and characters are usually drawn without the subtle soft shadows we see in real life and colours have few varying shades. In 3D animation, everything happens on a 3 dimensional platform. Pictures have depth and offer multiple perspectives just like in real life and have soft subtle shadows casted on the objects and characters within.

In 2D, characters look cartoonish and unrealistic. In 3D, characters can look cartoonish but realistic at the same time.

Another way to think of this is to think in terms of a painting and a sculpture. 2D is a painting, and 3D is a sculpture. 3D introduces “depth perspective,” so we not only see a rectangle (2D) but a CUBE (3D). You may also want to think of it like being the difference between a photograph of a glass of water (2D) and being able to reach out and actually pick up the glass of water (3D).

Typically, 2D involves “drawing,” or movement on, say, a flat surface (sketch pad, etc.) or in the vertical and horizontal planes. 3D involves “modeling,” i.e., creating objects in 3-dimensions using a computer software, residing in an expansive virtual environment, complete with lights, reflections, other objects, shadows, etc.

You could start training yourself by comparing a cartoon like Bugs Bunny, Aladdin, Lion King (2D) to “Toy Story 1,2 & 3, “Finding Nemo” and “Incredibles” (3D). If you have not watched any of these great cartoons, you should grab one right away or be branded a Neanderthal forever!



Source by Aldric Chang

The Big Six – Top 6 Major Film Studios in the Movie Business

When you watch a movie, whether it be at the cinema or in the comfort of your own home, it’s seldom you actually think about where the movie was produced and how each film company secured the rights to the movie you’re watching on the screen. The movie business is extremely competitive. The six major film companies discussed below comprise 90 percent of the US and Canadian box office revenue. If you’re pondering a career in film, you may want to pay very close attention to the statistics below.

And while there are a few “mini-majors” still turning a profit in the industry (Lions Gate Entertainment and MGM for example), it’s fairly difficult for film companies to stay afloat while competing with these highly successful empires.

Below you will find the six major film companies (also known as “The Big Six”) and a brief description of each:

1. Warner Bros. Pictures. Comprising a whopping 19.7 percent of the US/Canadian market share (2007 figures), Warner Bros. Pictures is the biggest player in the film industry. Securing the rights to major films like Harry Potter, Superman, Batman, The Matrix and Star Wars have made Warner Bros. the No. 1 name in the business.

2. Paramount Pictures. With 15.5 percent of the US/Canadian market share (2007 figures), Paramount Pictures continues to be one of the most successful film production companies in the world. Star Trek, War of the Worlds, the Mission Impossible series, Transformers and Tropic Thunder are just a few of the popular films produced by Paramount Pictures.

3. Walt Disney. One of the most renowned film production companies in the history of the business, Walt Disney now holds 15.3 percent of the US/Canadian market share (2007 figures). With highly successful movies like Pirates of the Caribbean, National Treasure, Meet the Robinsons and Enchanted, there’s no doubt that Disney will continue to play a key role in the industry for years to come.

4. Columbia Pictures. Comprising 12.9 percent of the US/Canadian market share (2007 figures), Columbia Pictures remains a big player in the business. Some of this company’s recent successes include Casino Royale, The Da Vinci Code, the Spider-Man series and Step Brothers.

5. Universal Studios. 12.2 percent of the US/Canadian market share (2007 figures) belongs to Universal Studios, which continues to make millions for the film industry. With major hits like the Bourne series (Bourne Identity, Bourne Supremacy and Bourne Ultimatum), The American Pie series, Knocked Up, American Gangster and The Incredible Hulk, it’s very clear that Universal Studios knows what it takes to make money in this industry.

6. 20th Century Fox. Also known as “Twentieth Century Fox,” this highly successful movie production company makes up 11.9 percent of the US/Canadian market share (2007 figures). Some of the biggest and most successful movies from this empire include the X-Men series, Mr. and Mrs. Smith, Star Wars Episodes II and III, and the Fantastic Four.

Once again, if you’re looking for a career in the film industry, the six companies listed above are the cream of the crop. If you have the opportunity to work for one of these companies, we wouldn’t suggest passing it up.



Source by Selena Valoure

The Hand Colored Photography of William James Harris

Interest in early 20th c. hand-colored photographs by “Harris” has been increasing in recent years, especially in Harris’s Florida scenes. Yet I’ll wager that most collectors don’t even know Harris’s first name, let alone anything about his background.

We had no information on Harris ourselves until several years ago when we mentioned Harris in a previous article and asked readers to supply us with any known information. As a result we received an article on Harris postcards, and an article that had been published on Harris by the St. Augustine Historical Society in 1991, both of which shed considerable light on the hand-colored photography career of William James Harris.

William James Harris (1868-1940) was born on October 12, 1868 in Herefordshire, England. His family emigrated to America in 1870, settling in the Wilkes Barre, PA area. Known in his youth as both “Will” and “Willie“, by age 20 he apprenticed under a local photographer. Within one year he was able to start his first photography business while living with his parents and operating his first studio within their house.

In 1890, the 22 year old Harris moved with his family to W. Pittston, PA where, although he continued operating a studio in his parents home, he also began his career as a traveling photographer. During the early 1890’s, he spent considerable time photographing coal miners and mining operations in eastern Pennsylvania’s coal regions. Soon thereafter he began utilizing the railroads to transport him, and his photography equipment, to the mountains, lakes, cities, and wherever else he decided to take his camera. Cabinet photographs sold by Harris around this time listed his address as West Pittston, PA; Tunkhannock, PA; Pittston, PA; Penn Yan, NY; Binghamton, NY; and Keuka, NY

In 1893 Harris traveled to the World’s Columbia Exposition in Chicago. While there his began the first of many subsequent promotional feats. One of the focal points of the 1893 Columbia Exposition was the first-ever introduction of George Ferris’s great “Ferris Wheel“. And it was Harris who was the first to photograph it. He envisioned that by climbing upon a roof approximately the same height as the Ferris Wheel’s center shaft, he would be able to produce a view whereby the curves of the wheel were not distorted vertically by perspective. This photograph was so impressive that Harris donated 2000 of them to the Ferris Wheel Company, each of which included his name and address, which helped to make an early name for the young photographer.

In 1895 he married Maude Dunn, a marriage that was short-lived because she died suddenly and unexpectedly in 1897.

Shortly after Maude’s death, Harris and some friends opened a tourist business in Pennsylvania’s Pocono Mountains, selling pictures of Buck Hill Falls, the Delaware Water Gap, and other local attractions to tourists and local residents. While operating from the “Harris Gallery” his services also included cabinet cards and tin-type photographs,. This portable studio once again served as an excellent promotional feat because it enabled him to both advertise his business, and process his photographic work, wherever he went.

Around 1901, Harris married a second time, making Marion E. Briant the second Mrs. Harris. Together they had two children, a daughter (Ruth) and a son (Carver). This marriage lasted until about 1920. After the divorce, Marion Harris returned to her Dover, NJ home with Ruth, leaving Carver with his father.

Soon thereafter, Harris married Ella Anderson, his third and final marriage.

Lake Hopatcong: It was in 1898 that Harris moved to a location that would play a vital role in his life…Lake Hopatcong, NJ. Located in northern New Jersey, it’s 9 miles of coastline and coves make it New Jersey’s largest lake and at the turn of the century, Lake Hopatcong had become a summer mecca for the rich and famous. Conveniently located to nearby New York city, Lake Hopatcong offered an easy summer getaway from the city heat and many summer “cottages“, which in many instances were more like mansions, began springing up around the lake. Harris quickly recognized the need for his photographic services here during the summer months.

Beautiful sunsets became the Harris trademark while working on Lake Hopatcong and he was farsighted enough to set himself up on a part of the lake that was recognized as having the best sunsets. And being the great promoter that he was, Harris began advertising his studio as offering the finest sunset photographs on the lake. Soon tourists began flocking to his studio for their personal and family photographs on Lake Hopatcong.

In another move of public relations genius, Harris created his own personal “Floating Studio” in the summer of 1899. Replacing his land-based portable studio, this floating studio was actually a …

Collections – Why Do People Collect Things?

There were seashells everywhere. The room was furnished with couches and chairs with a seashell pattern on the upholstery.There were lamps with shades covered with shells. Sculptures made of shells and books about seashells sat on the tables. Family photos in seashell- encrusted frames lined the shelves. A curio cabinet was filled with more shells. I was visiting the home of a new acquaintance. She collects seashells. A special room in her home was dedicated to shells. There were shells from all over the world everywhere in that room. Even the business card she gave me was decorated with a photo of a large shell.

People have a natural tendency to collect things. Seashells may not be their passion but whether its coins, stamps, postcards, spoons, or more bizarre things like teabags, chocolate bar wrappers or traffic signs we human beings seem inclined to be collectors. Dr. Steve Anderson, a neurologist at the University of Iowa says our need to collect may harken back to an earlier point in our evolution, since many animals hoard things, especially food.

According to Susan Pearce, author of the book Interpreting Objects and Collections one in three North Americans collects something. There are many different kinds of collections and collectors.

Some collections are souvenirs or mementos of a place. I once visited the home of a couple who collect masks every time they travel. One wall of their dining room is covered with traditional painted masks from South Africa, Egypt, Vietnam, the Philippines and dozens of other places. When they are on a trip they never have to stop and think about what to buy as a souvenir. They just look for a mask to add to their collection.

Some collections are gifts. I know a man who gives his mother a china plate every Mother’s Day with a message or saying about mothers on it. He hunts through antique stores and curio shops, often for weeks, until he finds a plate and a design that he hasn’t already purchased. His mother has more than twenty such plates in her collection.

Some collections are of practical use. I have friends who are world travelers and collect Starbucks Coffee mugs from every place they visit. There are Starbucks franchises in more than forty countries. Our friends don’t have forty different mugs but certainly enough for a fairly large group of coffee drinking guests.

The desire to learn new things can also be the impetus behind a collection. I know someone who collects military artifacts from the World Wars. He has uniforms, machinery, vehicles, sheet music, maps, books, flags and photographs. His collection has helped him learn a great deal about military history.

Some people collect things because of their monetary value. I used to work with a woman who collected Barbie Dolls. She assured me someday she would sell her collection and make a mint of money.

Susan Pearce says there are some collections which she terms ‘magic’. There is no rhyme or reason for collecting them but they have a certain appeal or attraction for the collector. I imagine this might apply to a collection of snow globes or a large collection of Superman memorabilia.

Collections can remind us of positive experiences and important people in our lives. They can help us learn new things. They can be practical or magical. If you’re not a collector you might want to think about becoming one. Collections can enrich our lives.



Source by MaryLou Driedger

How to Store Unframed Prints

When choosing how to store unframed prints, your decisions will depend on the value of the artwork, whether it be monetary value or sentimental value.

There are two main ways to look at when choosing how to store unframed prints and they are as follows:-

Flat Storage

Unframed prints should be placed flat in between two pieces of matt board, this should be acid-free. Provided that the mat boards are acid free then the prints do not need to be wrapped separately and can be placed together. The main cause of damage to unframed prints is insect damage so ensure you seal the pieces of matt board together with tape so they are sealed completely.

Rolled Storage

If you cannot store your prints flat then you can place your prints rolled in a cylinder as an option for how to store your unframed prints. Rolling must be done carefully and you should add in a piece of acid free paper for protection of your artwork. Never place an elastic band around your prints as over time it will damage them. The tube must be sealed to ensure no insects can get in.

All prints should be stored in a dry area and you need to avoid high humidity areas. If you have valuable artwork to protect then extra measures may need to be taken, some options of how to store unframed prints are:-

Encapsulation

When a document is encased in a polyester film and properly sealed it is referred to as encapsulated. When artwork is encased it is in a permanent microclimate so can be taken out and inspected at any time without risk of damage.

A Covered Window Matboard

This technique is recommended for artwork that needs special protection such as original artwork including pastels and charcoal. You mat the artwork then cover it with another sheet of matboard which you can hinge at one side with pressure-sensitive linen tape. This technique will allow you to store the artwork safety but give you access to view it.

Solander Box

This is an acid free, special airtight box with a hinged front panel. The hinged panel gives easy access to your prints, to add or remove prints. Solander boxes are available from conservation suppliers.



Source by JS Fox

How to Become a Successful Independent Artist or Songwriter

By far the most important skill to have if you wish to become successful with anything, is ATTITUDE. An old Chinese proverb once said, “90% of the journey towards success is over once you have stepped outside your front door.” The reason many people fail, is because they’d rather stay in and watch the TV.

Of course, that first step outside is a philosophical one. As a musician or songwriter, you spend the vast majority of your time being creative. If you think that writing a great song, or playing an instrument well, is the hardest part of being a successful artist, you are wrong.

Despite all the skills you need to know and perfect in order to make your music shine, these pale into insignificance compared with the hard work and other skills you will need to learn in order to record, market and sell your art successfully.

Fortunately, most creative people also seem to excel at other things. The term “Jack of all trades” could quite easily apply to most musicians or artists. After all, the first thing most artists have to learn, is how to find time for their art whilst running a home AND holding down a Day Job in order to pay the bills! It is therefore not unusual to find musicians who are also Physicists, Engineers, IT Professionals or Teachers, to name but a few.

Most of these people are quite content to keep music as a hobby, at least whilst bringing up a family. However, we all get to a stage in our lives (usually once the kids have grown up and left home), where we want to cease working for a “Living”, and instead, work for our own “Satisfaction”.

There are few things in life more satisfying than being admired for something we created. If our creations also manage to influence others, then it is even more rewarding.

This “first step outside your front door” is taken when you decide to pause from the creative aspect (the ideas), and take a positive step towards learning new skills, or employing others who can do those things for you.

There has never been a better time in the history of mankind, to take those steps, either by yourself, or with others who would help you.

–Where you used to have to pay for tutoring, or buy books, in order to learn the techniques of songwriting, or playing an instrument, you can now find scores of articles on the Internet (like this one!) that will help you for free.

–Where you used to have to save up a considerable amount of money to pay studio costs and hire session musicians to make a decent demo recording, you can now find all the necessary tools, and even the musicians, on the Internet who would help you for little or no cost at all.

–Where you needed to sign a record deal in order to be able to afford a producer and a master quality studio, you can now buy your own PC and some music software, and collaborate with a producer online, who will give you the capability to make radio-ready recordings.

–Where you needed a record company with a huge advertising budget to market and sell your recordings, you can now (with some hard work), market and sell your CDs to the Whole World for next to nothing.

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The Music Industry doesn’t like the changes that the Internet has brought to the business. Digital media can be freely copied by anyone with a PC, anywhere in the World. No longer do the record companies just have to worry about the CD pirates who manufacture illegal copies to sell on the black market; they also have to now worry about every PC-literate man, woman and child, making their own copies too! This has led the music industry into a perpetual fight against filesharers (making enemies of many consumers in the process), instead of embracing the business advantages that the Internet brings to us.

The Music Industry still believes that 8-16 year-olds buy most of the records, so they are still catering primarily for that market. Recent industry figures are telling a different story, and the secret is the “Baby Boomers”.

Yes … The same people who created the above market perception in the 70’s by buying the largest proportion of records ever, whilst they were teenagers, have now grown up! The largest age group to buy CDs TODAY, at 26% of the population, are over 45. Not only that, but they still like the same kinds of music as they did then. So there is no need to change your art to fit today’s teenybopper market if you aren’t that way inclined.

Now that we know the secret, we also know that the next big …

Dance: The Beautiful Art

It is natural to want to dance and move whenever we hear music. With the drum beat of a military march, we want to march in time; the smooth circles of a waltz have the power to make us feel like twirling forever; and a lullaby makes us lilt our bodies into sleep. Dance is a natural expression and is a natural response to music that is heard externally or sometimes but rarely, it is in resonance with the sounds of inner joy, to which only the individual is privy.

Most people wish to dance, or enjoy dancing. It is a feature in the life of most people throughout the world who reveal the differences in their culture through the different types of music and the different styles of dance movement they develop in their traditional art. There is a different between the dance of a country barn dance or western line-up with a country band and the rap dancing with its accompanying intonation and sounds; between the tap dancers metallic beat to a popular tune and the ballet dancers soft pointed feet describing the patterns of a classical piece; the passionate guitar and strong heel beats of a Spanish flamenco and the smooth swirls of an Austrian circular waltz to the strains of a violin.

Music provides the powerful influence which we seek to express in movement and dance. In addition, if our own emotions are moved, we can convey how we feel by injecting our emotions into our physical movements. If music uplifts us, we may dance but wish we could fly and the best we can do is to raise our arms and elevate our bodies from the floor as best we can. If the music on the other hand is sombre, we would rather dress in garments of grey and drop our heads to respond in heavy deliberate movements to show what the music intends.

For the professional dancer, it is music which dictates the mood and demands that a dancer surrenders his body to that music, not just for his own pleasure, but for the sake of a wider purpose. Then the dancer surrenders to music as if it were the conductor, as he seeks to make his body its complete or final instrument .The dancer can only surrender to the music if he wishes his body to serve to express its influence. To dance to a rhythm without conscious thought is a pure reaction – it is not an art.

Dancers are agents of the music – there to express something of the spirit of his inspiration of the composer. If we like the music we are asked to dance to, there is an easy relationship and harmony between the music, the source of it and our bodies. It is all in tune and the dancer can add the ingredient of his own intelligence and pour his feeling through his body language. If we are not attracted to the music then the dancer is a mere puppet. In the future, to use a dancer without him having conscious desire to express the music will be seen as dancer abuse! It is not a true and fine example of the art form at all unless music and dancer are as one.

If we hear discordant sound and it is the fashion to move to it, one must be very skilled or insensitive or perhaps both in wishing to express chaos and discord. Life’s real discordant notes are only too well known in the reality of living without having to bold type it all. Modern times are difficult with little rhythm, melody or harmony in any popular music.

In discothèques the lighting makes jagged vibrations through the chaos and to a dancer who is sensitive to the loveliness and the harmonies of inspired music, it creates an atmosphere which is unintelligent, purposeless and insane. There can be no reason why such occasions are not banned because of the noise, so as to preserve the health and the hearing of everyone concerned. The brains of all who participate are damaged – to what extent, only the future will reveal. Participants do not deserve the name dancer but often are enslaved by drugs and the hypnotic drum beats.

Modern music is not harmonious. Therefore a dancer’s body must become jerky and strained, stretched to an extreme tension, tested beyond its inherent strength, making demands which are acrobatic, exaggerated, unnatural and unattractive in the main. Beauty is the ingredient which is neglected, even forgotten. And in judging the result, anyone witnessing such movement to such music may gasp at techniques which extend the boundaries of body capabilities – but which leave the audience empty.

Music is best understood as food for the soul. This was and remains the classical …

Demand Based Pricing

What is the best price a retailer can charge for his product?

One of the most difficult, yet important aspect, a retailer must decide as an entrepreneur is how much to charge a product. While there is no one single right way to determine pricing strategy, fortunately there are some guidelines that will help to take this crucial decision.

There are certain pricing guidelines such as competition-based pricing, cost-plus pricing, marginal-cost pricing, demand based pricing, supply based pricing, etc which sets thumb rule to decide price. These principles are specific to the characteristics of the product and the prevailing market condition.

Retailers face the complicated task of setting and changing prices for many items they carry. A typical grocery store in the United States now carries around 31,000 items in hundreds of product categories (Kahn and McAlister 1997). Each week, a retailer changes prices on over 4500 items (Levy et al. 1998). Besides the sheer number of price change possibilities, the considerations that enter the retailer pricing decisions have become very complex.

Sophisticated demand forecasts based on scanner data, a wide variety of manufacturer discounts, the push towards category management, and marketing intelligence on competing retailers’ prices may all matter, and have been incorporated in recent analytical research (e.g., Basuroy et al. 2001, Kim and Staelin 1999, Wedel et al. 2004). Most recently, Nijs, Srinivasan, and Pauwels (2006) find that when retailers rely on past prices to set future prices (i.e., past-price dependence, price stickiness, or price inertia), lower category margins are observed, while demand-based pricing is associated with higher category margins.

Often we see many articles speaking about different pricing strategies related to advantages, reasons behind using specific strategies and so on. Out of all these, the arguable demand based pricing, suites retailers with the aim of increasing his profit.

Let us see some of the advantages of demand based pricing for a retailer:

1. In setting retail prices of brands in categories with higher purchase frequency.
2. In setting retail prices of brands in categories with larger number of SKUs.
3. In setting retail prices of brands in high-growth categories.
4. In setting retail prices of brands in storable categories.
5. In setting retail prices of brands with greater share of the retailer private label.
6. In setting retail prices of brands with greater product-line breadth.
7. In setting retail prices of high-share brands.
8. In setting retail prices of brands with higher demand sensitivity.
9. In setting retail prices of brands in expensive categories.
10. In setting retail prices for products with deep discounts from the manufacturer.

Companies who are well versed and have strong understanding on these principles classify the conditions under which retailers rely more on demand-based pricing. Our insights offer great opportunity for retailers to evaluate their pricing structure and help them to arrive at quick logical decisions.

References:
1. Basuroy S., Murali K Mantrala and Rockney G Walters. 2001. The Impact of Category
Management on Retailer Prices and Performance: Theory and Evidence. J. Marketing 65
(October), 16-32.Benkwitz, Alexander,
2. HelmutKahn, Barbara E., Leigh McAlister. 1997. Grocery Revolution: The New Focus on theConsumer, Addison-Wesley Pub. Co, Reading, MA.
3. Levy, Daniel, Mark Bergen, Shantanu Dutta, Robert Venable. 1998. Price Adjustment at
Multiproduct Retailers. Managerial and Decision Economics. 19 81-120.
4. Nijs, Vincent, Shuba Srinivasan, Koen Pauwels 2006. Retail-price drivers and retailer profits. Marketing Sci., forthcoming.



Source by Jethendra B K

How Affiliate Marketing Works – A Step By Step Guide For Beginners

Looking to make an income online? Got a computer / laptop and an Internet connection? Then Affiliate Marketing could be the simplest and quickest path to fulfilling your dream.

Here, you’ll discover the 6 simple steps that will take you from complete beginner to Affiliate Marketer in as little as 48 hours.

WHAT IS AFFILIATE MARKETING?

Affiliate marketing is a performance-based marketing system where a product vendor pays an “affiliate” a commission when someone buys their product. That “someone” having been referred to the vendor by the “affiliate.”

And it all happens online: You have a web presence, usually a website, that you attract like-minded visitors to, where you “warm them up” to the idea that the product you’re promoting (as an affiliate) is the perfect answer to their pressing problem or need.

That “product” could be physical (books, CDs, DVDs, clothing, jewelry, natural medicines, etc.) or digital (e-books, e-reports, software, online courses / trainings, etc.).

When your visitor clicks on your affiliate link (on your site) they are redirected to the vendor’s site, where the vendor will close the sale; a lot easier after you’ve warmed them up! When your site visitor buys the vendor’s product you get paid a commission.

For example, if the product cost $100 and you get, say, 50% commission, you’ll get paid $50! And all for, basically, introducing someone with a pressing problem or need to someone who can fix that problem.

Affiliate marketing is ideal for beginners starting out online as it has a very low barrier to entry: it’s a very simple process that doesn’t need any particular technical skills, you don’t have to have your own product, and it doesn’t cost the earth to get started. In fact, you can get going for less than $20!

And, you don’t have to do selling, or fulfillment, or keep stock, or deal with payment systems, and you don’t have to deal with customers; the vendor does that.

All YOU need is an Internet connection and a computer / laptop and you’re good to go.

AFFILIATE NETWORKS

Because affiliate marketing is so profitable for both affiliate and vendor, over the years many “affiliate networks” have sprung up to help both affiliates and vendors manage their affairs much more efficiently and easily.

Vendors can attract affiliates by advertising their products on these networks and affiliates can easily find products to promote. Once an affiliate decides to promote a certain product the network assigns an affiliate link / ID so that sales of that product can be linked back to the affiliate.

The affiliate network also takes on responsibility for managing the flow of money between vendor and affiliate either by electronic transfer or check. It also charges a small fee to both vendor and affiliate for the service.

There are many affiliate networks to choose from, but a beginner to affiliate marketing can easily get started with “ClickBank” and / or “Amazon.”

GETTING STARTED WITH AFFILIATE MARKETING

1. Choose Your Niche and Product

The first step is to decide which niche you wish to operate in. A “niche” is a group of people with very similar interests, e.g. gout sufferers, broken relationships, looking for car insurance, how to make money online, etc. But, of course, it also has to have proven “buyers” in it in order to make money.

So how do you find a profitable niche with lots of profitable products you can promote?

A very quick way to do this is to search affiliate networks for niches that have several products that their stats tell you are selling well. If there are lots of products that are selling well, you now know that the niche is a profitable one, and, the buyers in that niche like those products.

In other words, there’s no second guessing; you know for a fact that you can make money in that niche and you know for a fact which products are successful, unlike if you had to develop your own product!

Once you’re happy with a product, you sign-up as an affiliate for it and are given a unique link that you place on your website. When a visitor clicks on that link they go to the vendor’s sales page where, if they buy, you get paid the commission assigned to that product.

2. Get Your Domain Name

Before you setup your website you need to get a domain name based around your niche. For example, fastgoutcure.com, weightlossforseniors.com. Get the idea? This will become your website “address.”

Two of the most popular domain registrars are “GoDaddy” and “NameCheap.”

3. Get Hosting

Next, you need to get hosting for your website. This is where all your website files will be stored and secured. When someone enters your domain name in their browser they will be directed to your …

Importance of Picture Frames

Memories are the returns that one gets out of the investment strategies made in lifestyle. They add to the collection of life and make it value living. They not only act as a comfort to the struggling and hassled thoughts but also add to the wealth of the experience, that one accumulates while spanning the grounds of life. The good times and experiences add to the happy moments while the not so happy ones contribute to learning the precious lesson of lifestyle. Whenever you take a picture of yours or your family members or whenever you are done with an awesome painting; you definitely feel to secure it and show it in an attractive way. Taken as a whole the memories are too unique to be kept aside revealed to carelessness. The importance of picture frames thereby hardly require any unique discuss.

A photo frame gives creative reliability to your time and effort, and focuses on shades, features and the position where the picture was taken. A great picture drops its worth if put in a nasty structure purchased at the flea market. A photo frame style is simple with no decoration. These supports have clean lines in a mix of shades from primary black frames to bold, stunning shades like lemon, sea red or olive natural. Frames are available in a wide range of dimensions and absolute depths so you can not only frame pictures, but also art work or collectible items like embroidering items, petite shoelaces or excellent pottery clothing. Picture frame is a great way to make a statement on your walls. They are fashionable and will give each image an exclusive look. If you want your image walls to look expertly designed, frames are the way to go. These are a few reasons why frames are so hot, and their reputation is sure to last for many years.

It is a difficult task to discover the right gift for the person you really like, picture frames are one of those ideal gifts in almost every possible scenario. If you are one of those people who have complications finding a right gift for an individual you really like, then you are one the right position. Enough here we are at purchasing gift is nearing, and we all will find ourselves in a challenging situation to discover just the right gift. We all want our gifts to be excellent and to take a breathing away and to appeal the person to whom they are intended for. One of the possible and simultaneously good alternatives is to buy this frame. There are several factors and reason why these are fantastic gifts.

Whether you choose metal photo frames or wood ones, it’s important to use high quality creating and mats resources that have been handled with an alkaline eliminating agent so as to secure the artifact from level of acidity. Pay attention to the clinging, increasing and mats, and the picture frame will provide their designed features well for many years.



Source by John E Krawczyk

Wallace Nutting Hand – Colored Photographs

Wallace Nutting sold more hand-colored photographs during America’s 1900-1940 “Golden Age of Hand-Colored Photography” than any other photographer of his time. It is estimated that between 5,000,000-10,000,000 of his pictures decorated the walls of middle class American homes during the early 20th century. Why was Wallace Nutting so successful? And why are his pictures still being widely collected today? This article represents a basic introduction into the world of Wallace Nutting Pictures.

It was shortly after 1900 that Wallace Nutting retired from the ministry due to ill health (he was a Congregational Minister in Providence RI at the time). As part of his recovery, he began touring the New England countryside by carriage or car, taking photographs of rural New England. Nutting was one of the first to recognize that the American scene was changing. Industrialization was altering the way our country looked and our pure and picturesque landscape would never look the same again. He seemed to feel it his divine calling to record the beauty of America for future generations.

Beginning first in Vermont, then Massachusetts and Connecticut, and eventually throughout the rest of New England, Nutting began photographing country lanes, streams, rivers, lakes, orchards, blossoms, birches, and mountains. Wallace Nutting would take the photograph, assign a title, and instruct his colorists how it should be hand-tinted. Each picture that met Nutting’s high standards of color, composition, and taste would be affixed to its matting and signed by his employees with the distinctive “Wallace Nutting” name. (He hardly ever signed any pictures by himself). Those pictures that did not meet his strict standards were destroyed. Beginning first with outdoor (Exterior) scenes in New England, Nutting eventually traveled throughout the United States and Europe, taking photographs in 26 states and 17 foreign countries between 1900-1935. Overall, he took more than 50,000 pictures, 10,000 of which he felt met his high standards. The balance were destroyed.

It was around 1905 that Nutting began taking his first indoor (Interior) pictures. Supposedly one day while it was raining outside, Mrs. Nutting suggested that he take a more “Personable” picture indoors. So, he set up a colonial scene, near a kitchen hearth, had an employee dress up in a colonial fashion, and took several different pictures. These sold relatively easily which encouraged him to expand more into this area. Nutting’s love of antiques, his passion for the pilgrim period, and his unquestionable desire to turn a profit led him to eventually purchase and restore five colonial homes:

  • Webb House, Wethersfield, CT
  • Wentworth-Gardner House, Portsmouth, NH
  • Cutler-Bartlett House, Newburyport, MA
  • Hazen-Garrison House, Haverhill, MA
  • Saugus Iron Works (Broadhearth), Saugus, MA

Nutting purchased these homes because he felt each represented a different period of early colonial American style and taste. It was here, along with his own homes Nuttinghame (Southbury, CT) and Nuttingholme (Framingham, MA), that the majority of his Interior pictures were taken. Nutting’s desire to provide the most correct and appropriate settings for his Interior scenes led him in his quest to gather one of the best collections of early American furniture ever assembled. He would use the best examples of early American furniture in his Interior scenes and, when he couldn’t find it, he would reproduce it. (We’ll focus on his reproduction furniture in a subsequent article).

Working in Southbury CT from 1905-12, and then in Framingham MA from 1912 until his death in 1941, Nutting sold literally millions of his hand-colored photographs. He claims to have sold around 10,000,000 pictures although, knowing his habit of exaggeration, that number is probably somewhat high.

Whatever the true number, it was large. Wallace Nutting pictures were sometimes called “poor man’s prints“. Sold throughout the first quarter of the 20th century, well before the invention of color photography, these pictures initially sold literally for pennies. His market was primarily the middle and lower middle classes…those households which could not afford finer forms of art. Because of their low price, Wallace Nutting pictures were purchased in large numbers. By 1925, hardly an American middle-class household was without one as they were purchased as gifts for weddings, showers, Christmas, birthdays, and for just about any other reason imaginable.

Nutting sold many pictures directly through his studios where he also provided his own framing services. But he also sold his pictures through many other outlets as well: department stores, drug stores, and gift shops, all around the country. He even had full-time salesmen on the road whose sole job was to sell his pictures to these retail establishments. Salesmen whom, he claims, sold enough pictures to retire quite handsomely themselves.

The height of Wallace Nutting picture popularity was 1915-25. During this time Nutting had nearly 100 colorists in his employment, along with …

Top 23 Free Music Streaming Online Sites

Music is life. It inspires, elevates, changes moods and has the power to bring out the best in us. Without music, the world would make not very much meaning. There are many ways to access and listen to music, especially in the modern world.

Advancement in technology has made it very easy for us to access music on the go, online, via different mediums like smartphones, tablets, and mobile phones. If you want to enjoy unlimited access to great music that will cost you no money, here are the top 23 sites.

Spotify

With over 20 million song options, there is hardly any site that can beat Spotify when it comes to delivering quality music to the masses free. Users can open the site and listen to any music on their desktop, laptop, tablet and Apple devices.

iHeart Radio

This site is about one of the best online music site that does not have any paid subscription options whatsoever. With over 18 million songs, 4,500 artists and 1,500 live radio, this site offer the best options for all types of music lovers.

The Sixty One

If you are one of those people that believe that there are great songs that are unpopular, you would love this free music streaming site. They select great songs that have not been heard and put them in the limelight.

BandCamp

This free music sharing and streaming site offer something unique that benefits both the artist and the users. Artists can post their songs, while users can listen to the songs, add comments and support the songs.

Jango

This site offers music lovers the opportunity to search for thousands of music in different genre and categories, play the songs or play a collection of songs altogether. It is an excellent place to discover great music.

Last.fm

There are very few online sites that can offer users the opportunity to find great music, talented artists and exceptional bands than Last.fm. Users can also use the website’s radio option to locate fresh music.

Pandora

This site is like an online radio station where you can find different types of songs, but with a little difference. During sign up, users are made to provide details of their favorite music genre, and Pandora will automatically forward them songs that relate to their interest.

iTunes Radio

Apple’s premier online music streaming channel needs no introduction. Users are given access to over 25 million songs; they can play on their Mac and other iOS devices. The site updates every day with great new songs.

SoundCloud

Step into the world of unlimited music with SoundCloud collection of music supplied by the most creative talents on the planet. The site’s uniqueness is attributed to its unique features, compatibility, and ability to share on social media.

RDIO

The RDIO model offers music lovers something extra unique among other sites. Users can listen to their favorite song or album, create a playlist, and listen to songs on multiple platforms like Android, Windows, and iOS.

Slacker Radio

Listen to all your favorite songs without any need to download on the Slacker Radio Platform. Users have access to more than 10 million songs they can play at any time and any day.

Di.fm

Listen to songs, find talented bands, get music information, all free at the Di.fm online music streaming site. It is loaded with cool features that enable you to choose songs based on categories like years of releases and genre.

Grooveshark

There are very few free online music streaming sites that can beat Grooveshark. Users are given the opportunity to explore cool features like unlimited streaming, social integration, folders and music selection options.

YouTube Disco

Although not very well known, this website offer users with the opportunity to search songs and playlists. You can also find your favorite artists, and use it online without any need for downloading.

Amazon Cloud play

With this free online streaming platform, music lovers can upload the playlist they already have and listen to them at any time. Also, when you purchase any songs on the Amazon, cloudplay automatically adds it to your playlist.

TubeRadio

This search engine offers something unique for music lovers. With TubeRadio, users can search for any songs and will be presented with a list they can choose. The site relies on YouTube to find and display the songs you’re searching.

Live365

Internet radio is a phenomenon and live 365 has come to make the magic even more realistic. The website allows users to find online radio where they can listen to their favorite songs, from different parts of the world.

8tracks

The playlist has gone to another level thanks to 8track’s innovative style. Anyone can sign up on the site, select eight tracks and share it. If you like the playlist, you can follow the …

Art is a Reflection on Society – A Perspective

Art has always been a reflection of the emotions, personal struggle, and the path breaking events of a contemporary society. When a society demands or undergoes a change, art has mostly subtly complied with it. The Oxford Dictionary describes art as “the quality, production, expression, or realm, according to aesthetic principles, of what is beautiful, appealing, or of more than ordinary significance.” In effect, art definitely is an expressive platform for individuals, groups, as well as society, especially the radical changes or events witnessed thereof. It usually depicts the current or a particular scenario in the purview of the political situation, economic, social, geographical, the emotions spun therein, the undertones of revolutions, and uprising, to name just some.

If we go periodical about discussing art as a reflection of society, then we begin from the most ancient. The ‘Prehistoric Art’ consisted of paintings on the rocks and caves, which symbolized their routine lifestyles and rituals. The paintings were therefore, an evidence of their culture, which helped historians derive information about the life, culture, and the civilization of this era. The famous ‘Indus Valley’ or ‘Harappa,’ ‘Greek,’ and ‘Egyptian’ civilizations, especially had prolific artistry, including sculpture, architecture, paintings, engravings, and metal art.

In fact, the most we know about these amazingly rich civilizations, is credited to their narrative artifacts and buildings only. For instance, the ‘Egyptian Civilization’ believed in life after death. The society therefore, had a strong spiritual framework, concentrating more on the human journey after death. They believed in immortality and worshipped many deities, a fact distilled from the paintings adorning the walls of the great Pyramids. The Greek Civilization however, was more emphatic about the human form, its poise, and beauty, reflecting mostly on the attires, body languages, hairstyles, and cultures prevailing over different periods.

Creativity adopted the sects of ‘Art Movement’ to depict the realities of a contemporary society, vis-à-vis, its stable fabric, regularly changing aspects, and even revolutions. The impact of the contemporary socio-political scenario has also always been portrayed. For instance, before the First World War, Paris used to bustle with great political activity. This restlessness somewhere influenced the development of ‘Cubism’ by Pablo Picasso and Georges Braque. ‘Cubism’ involved the depiction of a particular subject from multiple angles, a practically prevalent situation then. The artistry turned mysterious in essence, to manifest the hatching of diverse political conspiracies in Paris at that time.

Expressionism’ was another art form developed, when the society was undergoing transitions at different levels, including creative. There was a revolt against the traditional outlook towards art. A modern approach was adopted. The ‘Modern Art’ was a blend of ‘Abstract Realism,’ in which the subject was distorted to depict its reality and emotional upheaval. The colors in the paintings have nearly always portrayed the true emotions of the subject, the event, or the mood of the artists.

To conclude, we can say that art may always not be beautiful aesthetically or comprehensible to all. It however, should be powerful enough to portray the current emotions of the society, including exposing harsh and subtle truths, while also encouraging the betterments. The only constant in the world is change. In tune, societies metamorphose through different annals of time and art helps capture the resulting twists and turns in the contemporary culture and lifestyle.



Source by Annette Labedzki

Humanitarianism – A Recurring Theme in Michael Jackson’s Music and Videos

Humanitarianism, as strung from the strings of Michael Jackson’s heart, became a recurring theme in his lyrics, his videos and his public persona. Jackson’s songs such as “We Are The World”, “Man In The Mirror” and “Heal The World” convey his interest in humanitarianism, equality and world peace.

In 1985, Jackson co-writes with Lionel Richie, “We Are The World”, which is released worldwide to aid the poor in Africa and the US. Blessed with clever promotion and merchandising WATW is eventually named the biggest selling single of all time. To date, it has sold over 20 million units and raised over $63 million for famine relief.

“Heal the World” is a song from Michael Jackson’s hit album, Dangerous, released in 1991. The song’s music video features children living in countries suffering from unrest. He performs his hit single in the Super Bowl XXVII halftime show with a 35,000 person flash card performance.

He then creates the Heal The World Foundation, a charitable organization designed to improve the lives of children. The organization is also meant to teach children how to help others. This concept of “betterment for all” would become a centerpiece for his Dangerous World Tour.

Jackson’s videos, like his songs, are also well received. His “Man in the Mirror” video offers a montage of footage from various major news events such as the John F. Kennedy and Robert Kennedy shootings, Live Aid, Farm Aid, and notable people including Martin Luther King, Lech Walesa, Mother Teresa, Desmond Tutu …. All the profits from his “Man in the Mirror” single goes to charity.

As with “Man In The Mirror” and “Heal The World”, his song “Cry” reminds us of all the problems in the world. It discusses issues and subjects of war, loneliness, lying, changing the world, depression, suicide, miracles, and faith; it also suggests if everyone pulls together as one, we can all make a change to the world.

However in “Scream”, “Tabloid Junkie”, and “You Are Not Alone”, Jackson directs much of his anger and personal hurt at the media. While in his ballad “Gone Too Soon”, he gives tribute to his young friend Ryan White and the plight of those with aids.

As a response to the September 11, 2001 attacks, Jackson helps organize the United We Stand: What More Can I Give Benefit concert at RFK Stadium in Washington, D.C. The concert, which supports those who loss family members or love ones during the attacks, airs on October 21, 2001 and includes performances from dozens of major artists including Jackson, who performs his song, “What More Can I Give” as the finale.

Given the recurrence of humanitarian and socially conscious themes in Michael Jackson’s body of work, “Earth Song”, a ballad that incorporates elements of blues, gospel and opera, is the first that overtly deals with the environment and animal welfare. Showing images of animal cruelty, deforestation, pollution and war, the video centers around the destruction and rebirth of earth.

Like so many of Jackson’s songs of charity, equality and world peace, “Earth Song” goes on to receive a Grammy nomination.



Source by Larry T Carter