Month: February 2015


Run your fingers through your hair.

Dance while you fold your freshly cleaned laundry.


Drive home in the dark after dancing at the club but to see a spider swing down in front of your face. Pull over and flee the car then giggle at how silly you must look when dusting the spider out of your car to the passers by.

Roll the car windows down and sing along to your favorite songs. At the red lights serenade the people waiting next to you.

Hand deliver a package that was incorrectly delivered to you – meet a cute neighbor with a politely energetic dog.


Shop at the oriental market and listen to the employees talk in their native – enjoy recognizing the random ones you’ve learned so far.

Laugh at your own jokes.

(click to see a larger image and more of my comics!)

A Tree Blushing Valentine’s

I hope you are showering yourselves with love and appreciation today!

To me this particular day is a reminder that not just once a year you should treat yourself (and if applicable your special someone) to something nice. Look, even these trees are feeling a blush coming on!

Tree blush spied on a walk!
Taken on a walk with a friend.

No, that’s not literally a flora blush (though I like to think of it that way) that’s actually red lichen. Let’s have a talk about relationships.

Let’s start of with “what is lichen?” Lichen is a combination of algae and fungus – and can sometimes also contain the third organism cyanobacteria. The lichen grows best on trees in a cool, partially sunny, and moist environment. They face difficulty growing in polluted environments and are less likely to be seen in city-side foliage.

Different types of lichen were also used to produce dye either by boiling them in water or fermenting them in ammonia (urine tradtionally). These dyes were used differently across the world historically: yellow in North America, purple in Europe, and brown with red on Scottish tartans. If you’re anything like me you’ll be tilting your head and saying, “OH” because the preferences of certain historical styles and per royalty will suddenly make much more sense.

Fungus grows on the tree and collects moisture. This feeds the algae which photosynthesizes energy from the sun which in turn feeds the fungus making theirs a mutually symbiotic relationship. This pair of thallus’ attach to the tree bark via rhizines (hair-like filaments) and do not harm the tree, making their and the tree’s relationship one of commensalism.

Mutual Relationship

Personally I am used to seeing green lichen, so what makes the lichen pictured above red? Based on the research I have done the red and white lichen pictured above is a crutose lichen, which means it rows radiating from the center with the newest growth on the edges. As to which lichen specifically this is, I am not entirely sure, though I can tell you that lichen is typically named after its fungus section.

Some people think the lichen is unsightly and can purge it if they wish with several different methods, including a soap solution, copper-sulfate, and lime sulfur (which could also damage the tree if applied to the roots).

Soap Cleanse
Soap Cleanse

If you want to learn more, please feel free to explore any of the linked text above.

So, we’ve covered relationships, especially mutually beneficial ones, and red. Happy Valentine’s Day everyone and remember, much love~

Valentine's Chibis
Valentine’s Chibis

Other “Ratified Research” articles:

  1. The Luckdragon
  2. Purple Heart
  3. Headless Horseman
  4. Glaucus atlanticus: The Blue Dragon

Sketching Day

Hey, guys n gals. There’s nothing much going on this week. I mostly have sketches to share with you.

Assassin Qui'lin and Pirate Unicorn
Assassin Qui’lin and Pirate Unicorn (OCs)
~click the images to see them bigger~
bareback canter - random chibis - draenei - anthro ornaments
bareback canter – random chibis – draenei – anthro ornaments


These’ll probably go in the “work on later” pile but I do have a few to flesh out more digitally later – of course I didn’t picture them here, it’s a surprise!

I hope everyone had a good weekend – and hopefully learned something new about themselves~

Wading the Negativity

In this week’s post I would like to take a moment to acknowledge that pursuing your passions is hard.

I know you’ve probably heard many times already, “I may not be easy but it is worth it” and I am especially seeing this true now. This is especially true when facing your own doubts and worries coupled with negativity from other people. I’m not just highlighting others’ negativity in regards to your pursuits but also their base influence of negative energy.

Negative people are everywhere. They can be anyone from a stranger checking you out at a store register or a family member in your own home. They’re at your day job, the night clubs, and driving next to you on the road. Learning to deal with their impact on your attitude and in your life can be draining – absolutely draining – even for someone experienced in dealing with such things.

This is okay.

It is okay to need to step outside and scream or to have at it with a punching bag. Please take the time to take care of yourself and especially to get all the frustration inside either from your own efforts or dealing with others out of your system. This clears the way for inspiration. Processing and ridding yourself of it can be inspiring for a project in itself. Regardless of what you do with the ideas learn to get rid of it – to refresh yourself.

This is one of the minor things I show Kiara dealing with in the Green Book. Her situation calls for a stretch of powerful courage and gentle patience with no lack of frustration in between. Writing helps me both to show how to deal with these situations and to enter a more peaceful state of mind through storytelling. While sometimes I don’t know if I write these posts for you or for me I’m hoping that in the end they are showing you you are not alone and that they are helping someone somewhere.

Deep breaths.





Much love, guys and gals~

Kiara and J’harin – “At The Parting of Ways”