The Faith Machine
Welcome to the dangerous, clandestine world of ESPionage.
Welcome to The Strip, where operatives on the fringe command teams of ‘Cards’: Agents cursed with subtle, specialized, and sometimes sloppy psychic powers.
San Diego writer of speculative fiction in prose and comics. Author of the YA urban fantasy Picking Up the Ghost, the upcoming E.S.P. and espionage novel The Faith Machine, the upcoming graphic novel The Jade Queen and the upcoming RPG ESPionage.
Open to freelance work punching up stories or homepages, script-doctoring, beta reads, or other opinion vendings.
Stories have been with us since the first hunter told another about the one who got away. Stories are what make us human. Stories lead to understanding. Stories are cooked. Fiction, religion, biographies, gossip, gaming, and history it all goes into the pot and out comes as fiction. To those ends I’ve been around, professionally speaking. Marine, taxi driver, teacher, scientist, and coder. This breath of experience has given me a little knowledge about a lot of things, good and bad.
A good story reaches beyond the scope of its words.
The Latest News
Midjourney into Mystery Part II
When learning a new technology, I like to drive right in and start using it without reading the manual. In part because of the challenge but also as a test to see how intuitive the interface is. Midjourney’s one of those tools you can pick up and use with very little instruction, but a little knowledge produces much better results.
I’d already experimented with name-dropping artists, materials, and styles. But adjusting the aspect ratio created the most remarkable diversity of images. The standard square box produces lots of portraits, landscapes, and abstracts. But taller ratios result in more figures, and wider radios create some actual scenes.
“woman in business suit running through traffic from left to right, wes anderson, watercolor painting”
Definitely a watercolor, and there seems to be running and suits. Men’s suits, but good on Midjourney for not seeing gender.
“a car chase in pyongyang, illustrated, pen and ink”
There’s something North Korean about this, and something like cars. The chasing is barely implied.
“the cia at work, illustrated, pen and ink, literal”
“spies by CGSociety”
CGSociety came from a lost of represented artists.
Including “spies” gave me a lot of overcoats, sunglasses, and fedoras. I had to stop using it.
Once again, Midjourney’s experimenting with gender here.
“james bond having a drink outside, by Gerald Brom, illustration”
Didn’t ask for Edwardian James Bond, but that’s what I got.
“frankenstein’s monster’s head as a robot, white background, Richard Corben, illustration”
Posing figures is a real challenge, and so is alternative anatomy. I hammered away at the AI to get a robot with a head for a torso. Unfortunately, I didn’t get close.
Artists shouldn’t worry about AI taking their job, at least not yet. Midjourney can draw, but it can’t interact. There’s no way to draft, no way to elaborate on one’s instructions, and no sending pieces back for changes. The only artists this will replace are the few who specialize in abstract landscapes reflecting little of the commissioner’s desires.