Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Pantone Color Forecast and Free Download is offering a free color palette download (.ase file) for either Adobe or Quark applications. The Fashion Color Library is Pantone's fall fashion color palette, but it can easily be re-purposed to fill any design need for a spate of new colors.

Also, download the company's 2010 fall forecast PDF. It's always inspiring to see how design companies use color and marketing pieces to sell their services. And it's a big year for Living Coral #16-1546.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Find That Bird in a Sn-App

We don't claim to be birders, not by any stretch, but I can understand why people do it. Our experience with the bald eagle count was a good one, and it's tempting to think I could educate myself enough to embrace it as a hobby.

What's even more tempting is the idea that I could educate myself in the quickest, most passive way possible: through an iPod Touch or iPhone. Yep, there's an Audubon birder app that makes it easy to find birds by color, by region, or other characteristics. The best part is that the app includes bird songs so you can confirm what you  might be seeing by what you're hearing.

If birds are not enough, there are also Audubon guides for wildflowers, mammals and trees. And the apps can utilize the iPhone's GPS system to track where you've seen things.

The price per app is $10 for trees, wildflowers and malls; $20 for birds. All, including a free sampler app,  are available for download from iTunes.


Sunday, February 14, 2010

Bald Eagle Count at Silverwood

We went to Silverwood Lake yesterday to take part in a bald eagle count. The man-made lake, a California state park located east of the Cajon Pass, is part of the wintering grounds for bald eagles that migrate from Canada.

Neither one of us had ever participated in a bird count before, but it seemed like a worthwhile thing to do while spending a beautiful day in the mountains. After what has seemed like a lot of cold and rain this winter, the promise of sunny, 80 degree weather was too good to stay indoors..

We arrived at the lake around 8 a.m., met the other volunteers near the lake marina, and split up into small groups. Each group had a birder as a leader, and a designated spot to observe for birds. One spot was the nearby dam; another was Miller Canyon, and ours was Black Oak Canyon.

The bird count at Silverwood was one of several conducted simultaneously around the state. Each one started and ended at the same time to preclude double counting a bird that might fly from one watched site to another during the course of a day. The count was set from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m.

We arrived at Black Oak just before nine, and spotted one bald eagle immediately, sitting at the top of a tall, dead tree. He perched and waited, and eventually flew a short distance to another tree. He was far from us, but still clearly visible, given his impressive size. He was counted as an adult, and unfortunately, he was the only eagle we saw. We did see some large blue herons, and the brilliant if common blue jay.

At the end of the count, we heard there were two other eagles spotted for a total of three. We headed off to a peaceful picnic near the empty lakeshore, and soaked up the sun. There will be another eagle count in March, with the opportunity to cruise around the lake on a barge. We’re up for that.