Behold, I have made an image!

You’re not getting a good article today.

I’ll give you something to read, but it’s not going to be good – or educational. It’s not even going to have anything to do with music – probably.

Do you see that image on the left?

It took me three hours to do that. Including trying to figure out a way to embed the image so that text flowed around it.

Obviously, I failed at that.

Even after figuring out how it was supposed to be done, it wraps exactly one line of text and then jumps to the bottom – meaning you get one single line of text next to the image.

But, that’s actually the end of a long story – and I’m just gonna tell you why you’re not getting a good article today.


I searched and searched for a way to make actual public domain images using an web interface. I then tried to find one that already had a template for a seal of approval – what I really wanted.

There are no seal of approval generators that are any good. The one that I can figure out how to use, waited until I got to the end and told me I had to give them money.

It did let me get as far as saving them – and closing the tab. Being functionally retarded, I closed the tab – and didn’t actually check the saved images. I uploaded it by FTP and decided I’d better check the URL in my browser.

It had saved watermarks on it – lines right through the middle.

I went back and recreated it and it again offered me the chance to give them money and they’d have sold me a bunch of packages of images, including 3D images, that I didn’t actually want. I didn’t pay them.

I wish I had. That would have saved some time.

Eventually, I gave up trying to actually make a graphic. Surely, someone had made what I wanted and stuck it into the public domain.

Not really, no… No, it looks like nobody as quite done that. I was so tempted to just steal an image at this point.

I did eventually find an SVG that’d do – and it was in the public domain! Thank you, open source people – once again! However, it’s a stamp of approval and not a seal of approval. Beggars cant’ be choosers, so I was okay with this – sort of.

Except, I don’t actually know what to do with an SVG file. I know what an SVG is and I have a viewer. I know that I should know how to edit them – but fucked if I know what specific (Linux) apps can do this.

It’s SVG and there’s a tons of editors. Tons…

Not gonna learn that. Nope. We can scratch that right off the list of things I’m willing to invest time in.

I’ll just open it up and export it with my handy dandy SVG viewer app. It’s fucking Linux, I can do that.

They all changed the background black. I have no idea why.

Fuck… There went another forty five minutes as I tried all the viewer apps and debated installing something like InkScape.

Nope… Not installing InkScape – or GIMP. They’re too complicated for me and I’m not going to learn to use them.

I got the bright idea that there’s an online SVG editor. Surely, that has to exist! Off I run to Google…

Yes! They exist!

The first two, after finding them and waiting for them to load and jump through the very different mechanisms to upload my file, I discovered they’d not actually upload my precious SVG file.

By now, I’m getting pretty pissed at this process.

I tried one more. It took me forever to figure out their stupid fucking interface and then the fucking thing wouldn’t export as anything – no matter how many times I needlessly tried it again with slightly different settings.

Finally, I said fuck it – and I sure as shit said fuck it to actually caring that it had things like a transparent background.

I opened that SVG back up in my handy dandy image viewer – and took a screenshot.

I resized that and exported that bitch as a JPG! Fuck image creation.

I was then two and a half hours deep into the process already and I figured that’d actually been good progress – for me. I don’t do image generation. We’ve already figured that out, certainly by way of demonstration!

So, I was particularly pleased with myself – having finally reached the point where I just said fuck it. It was a pretty satisfying fuck it to say, actually.

I then figured I’d embed it in WordPress and wrap text around it.

It couldn’t be that hard, after all!

Lies! It’s horrible!

By the time I figured out the abstract lingo was not actually align to the left – but was actually to align with none… I then realized the fucking thing will only display one line of text as it “wraps” around it.

I could change CSS and fix it – but my CSS skills are just a wee bit worse than my image generation skills! Learning CSS is also something that’s just not likely to happen.

So, I spent like a half hour on that, before deciding I’d just set it as the “featured image” and call it good. To do it properly, they fucking want me to learn to do it in a special “child theme” that appears to be damned specific to WordPress.

I am not gonna figure that out. I’m sure as shit not going to figure out how to do that today. I already spent 2.5 hours.

And that’s why you’re not getting a good article!

The Seal and it’s Implications.

It’s pretty simple, really. It means it’s a source of information that I give a seal of approval to.

However, I want to stress that the seal is only worth the value you give it.

To date, I’ve only verbally given a seal of approval to a single source. But I’ve heavily implied it and endorsed other material. Things like Petrucci’s Rock Discipline have been heavily implied to be quite valuable – and, indeed, I give them the seal of approval.

Thus, what my seal of approval means to you is only equal to how valid you think my opinions are.

Just because I approve doesn’t mean you have to approve. You’re absolutely encouraged to decide for yourself and to set your own goals and do your own thing.

But, because I already wasted a bunch of time trying to generate a damned image and figure out how to use it, I don’t have much time.

Some of you will be familiar with these – so they may be duplicated effort, but I am going to retroactively go back through some of the things for which I stamp my stamp of approval.

Don’t worry – there aren’t many.

I don’t need to link to a few. I put my stamp of approval on a GLP – and even the Epiphone models. That goes without saying. Any. I don’t even care if it’s a broken GLP. I still put my stamp of approval on it and you should just get it fixed!

Yes, I’m biased – but  have my reasons for that bias.

Next, we have Rock Discipline – by Petrucci. You should really buy this, but I’m not even sure if it’s still for sale. So, I’m just gonna link to it on YouTube.

Fine, I’ll do some work…

Here, I found you an Amazon link. It’s not an affiliate link. I’m way too lazy for that. Click here and buy it. While you’re buying it, I’m just gonna link this.

There’s also a book and a few other things that he’s written. Use a search engine!

I’ve linked that video before and I do stamp my stamp of approval on it.

This may be new to some, but I have textually stamped approval on this:

I stamp my stamp of approval on that entire playlist – and think even I can benefit from watching it. You may already know some of it, but it’s actually pretty good – if you don’t know all of it.

I strongly, given the evidence in that series, would be willing to stamp approval on their entire collection of playlists. They have more stuff and it’s probably worth watching. I just haven’t watched it and I’m not putting my stamp of approval on it.

Those are the kinds of things for which I am comfortable endorsing! I love those things! I think they’re awesome and they get my seal of approval – at pretty much every level of guitarist. Hell, they’re so awesome that I think non-guitarists could find value in them!

The news aspect of this is that I’ll be doing more things that I stamp my approval on. It’s going to be some new recurring content, but I’m not actually sure it needs to be called a series.

I should caution folks that I’m like a five year old whenever I get near one of those label maker things. You have been warned. Seriously… In the past ten years, I’ve had my label maker taken away by a responsible and mature adult – twice. I really couldn’t argue with their logic and peacefully relinquished my label making machine.

In other words, I’m going to try to keep my seal of approval to only the best of the best – but I really like stamping stuff. If you see something and don’t agree with my stamp of approval, that’s okay – you’re not obligated to.

Yup. That’s all the article you’re getting today. This time, I’m serious. Until next time…

Shut up and play us a song!

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