Friday, November 23, 2012

Commission Info for Rainbow Foxy and Aidan Jones

So, you've come here to know how to do commissions with Rainbow Foxy and/or commission music from me (Aidan Jones). Read on to find out! It's pretty simple:

If you have a Paypal
  1. Log into your Paypal and at the bar at the top, click the tab that says "Send Money"
  2. In the form you see below in the box that says "To", put in this email address:
  3. Then, in the "Amount" box put in the amount of money that you and Rainbow Foxy have agreed upon as a price. Don't try to charge less or something because I always double check the price with Rainbow Foxy. Also, if you would like a thirty second piece of music from me, add $3.00 to the total price (Scroll down more to find out more about this music from me). If you are just looking to commission me for music, just put in $3 for every thirty second song you request.
  4. In the "Purchase" box, make sure the "Goods" selection is checked and click "Continue"
  5. This will bring you to a page to confirm all of the information that you have previously entered. Double check to see that all of your information is correct and then if you're ordering music from me type in the message box at the bottom of your screen what type of music you would like me to make. See the bottom of this post for what to say when explaining what type of music you want. If you're not ordering music, just click the "Send Money" button at the bottom after confirming your information and you're done!
If You Don't Have a Paypal

First of all, you do not need a Paypal in order to order these commissions! Just send me an email at and I will talk with you and send you a Paypal invoice. With this invoice, you can use a debit, credit, or bank account to pay without having a Paypal account. While you're talking with me you can tell me what kind of music you want if you ordered any.

If You Want Music

So, previously I said I would give out a thirty second piece of music free with any commission of Rainbow Foxy's work. What I found out after doing one piece of music is that it takes a while just to do thirty seconds of music. For example, the first piece of music that I completed "Rue's Getting Angry" (Soundcloud Link) took about six hours. That's a lot of time! And plus I have about four more of those to do so you can see how much time that will take me. The reason I spend so much time on these is I want to create good, quality music. If you listen to the piece I linked to above, you'll tell that work went into it and I myself am quite proud on how it turned out. All I'm asking for is $3 added to the price of the commission you're buying from Rainbow Foxy for an original, thirty second piece of music. You can also commission me separately from Rainbow Foxy's artwork by contacting me on Twitter or via my email. Also, for people who already purchased a commission from Rainbow Foxy, you will not need to pay extra for your music; you will still be getting it free. However, any commissions from after 1:26 PST on November 22nd on will need to pay the $3 requested.

But why is it $3 for a thirty second piece of music? I can get full length songs elsewhere for only a dollar! 

At first, this does seem like I'm ripping people off, I can understand that. But, here's my reasoning: people who make a song $1 usually have a good amount of people buy it. So, if you make a song $1 and 20 people buy it, that's twenty bucks right there (assuming you're using a service that gives you the entire profit) and usually more people would buy your song than just twenty. However, in my situation, I am spending a good chunk of time making a quality song and getting money from only one person. In other words, I will only be getting $3 total from the song and none more. After I make a song for a specific person, I put it up on Soundcloud so that people can listen to and download it freely and can use it adhering to the Creative Commons license. People could then possibly think, "Hey, this guy is pretty good at making music! He gives out his music to the public for free use and I'd like to support him and get some personalized music from him that I would personally enjoy for only $3". I am using this system because I am not popular enough to invest hours upon hours making a full length song (or even more crazily) or album and expecting people to buy it. Not enough people know about me for word to spread about this album/song so that I would get fairly compensated for my work. Thus, I have to start small and build a musical portfolio so if and when I eventually grow a big enough fan base for my work, I can start making songs and/or albums and sell them at the general price of $1/song and $10/album. Another reason why it's worth the money is that with a standard mp3 version of the song you can download on Soundcloud, you (and you only if you so want it to be that way; you can always distribute the link to the higher quality version or whatever I give you) will have access to the highest quality version of the song (usually in .aiff CD quality format). And, if you so request it, you can have access to the original Garageband and/or Logic Pro project files that I used to create this music as well as access to the album artwork that I happen to make. So, basically you'd be getting a lot more than buying a song off of iTunes. 

I'm ordering music and I want a specific type of music. Are there examples of what I should say?

First of all, you can request any instrumental musical genre that can be done with a keyboard/synthesizer and music editing software (I can't sing so don't ask for any singing). When describing what you want, you can use genres such as Classical, Jazz, Latin, Electronic, etc. Or you could use adjectives such as dark and haunting or happy and light. Or a combination (e.g. Happy and Light Electronic music). And furthermore you can reference an existing song and say you want something that sounds similar to it. And if you’re feeling lucky, you can just let me make a surprise piece of music for you :)

What if I want to commission a song that's longer than thirty seconds for a higher price?

I would gladly do that except, unfortunately, I have a life. I am in high school and it's very time consuming. So, I only really have time for thirty second commissions right now. I guess I could take longer than thirty second commissions but it would take a very long time for it to get to you so I'm going to have to say no to those for now. In the future I might consider it, but for now the answer is no, sorry.

And I think that pretty much covers it! If you have any questions, feel free to talk to me on Twitter @throughthemines or email me at 

If you do decide to order music from me, thank you from the bottom of my heart. It means so much to me when people have in interest in what I do and getting paid for it is wonderful. And please, if you could, tell your friends about my music if it's something you think they'd be interested in.

And if you order from Rainbow Foxy, I know she appreciates it a lot so thank you for that as well!

So, thanks for reading and I hope you'll find an interest in both of our works,

 - Aidan

Also, this exact same post is on my FurAffinity page if you're interested

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Screw You EA

So, I had this great idea for a series. It was called Keeping Up With the Jones' and it was in Sims 3. I was going to do a whole series in it, taking care of myself and my family and seeing how they progressed. It was a great idea because this could last a long time and it could be fun watching a family grow and someone commentating on it.

But no, EA just had to put copyright infringement on my video even though I never mentioned owning any of the content I posted; it also put my account in bad standing.

So I had to delete the video.

Thanks a bunch EA.

I realize that people can infringe on copyrights. But do you have to automatically give me a mark on my, I think, totally clean record, tell me "Take down your video or else your account will be in bad standing", and ban it worldwide? Really? All while I was promoting your game. I told people I like the Sims 3 and that it's a fun game.

I've put up a lot of videos from big publishers (an example being Valve) and I've very rarely gotten copyright infringement. I've gotten copyright infringement notices three times not including this one and two of them weren't legit and the other one I handled correctly. But I don't want to mess with EA. They have too much power and I'd probably lose my case which would further damage my Youtube reputation.

So, I'm sorry EA and I will never promote or do a Let's Play of one your games ever again since you don't seem to like it.


 - Aidan

Sunday, November 4, 2012

We are Insignificant

You see that tiny blue dot in the middle and a little to the right? That's Earth. One pixel on an image taken 6 billion kilometers away from Earth.

Read this quote please:

From this distant vantage point, the Earth might not seem of any particular interest. But for us, it's different. Consider again that dot. That's here. That's home. That's us. On it everyone you love, everyone you know, everyone you ever heard of, every human being who ever was, lived out their lives. The aggregate of our joy and suffering, thousands of confident religions, ideologies, and economic doctrines, every hunter and forager, every hero and coward, every creator and destroyer of civilization, every king and peasant, every young couple in love, every mother and father, hopeful child, inventor and explorer, every teacher of morals, every corrupt politician, every "superstar," every "supreme leader," every saint and sinner in the history of our species lived there – on a mote of dust suspended in a sunbeam.
The Earth is a very small stage in a vast cosmic arena. Think of the rivers of blood spilled by all those generals and emperors so that in glory and triumph they could become the momentary masters of a fraction of a dot. Think of the endless cruelties visited by the inhabitants of one corner of this pixel on the scarcely distinguishable inhabitants of some other corner. How frequent their misunderstandings, how eager they are to kill one another, how fervent their hatreds. Our posturings, our imagined self-importance, the delusion that we have some privileged position in the universe, are challenged by this point of pale light. Our planet is a lonely speck in the great enveloping cosmic dark. In our obscurity – in all this vastness – there is no hint that help will come from elsewhere to save us from ourselves. The Earth is the only world known, so far, to harbor life. There is nowhere else, at least in the near future, to which our species could migrate. Visit, yes. Settle, not yet. Like it or not, for the moment, the Earth is where we make our stand. It has been said that astronomy is a humbling and character-building experience. There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we've ever known. 

This quote hit me hard, especially the first paragraph. This guy's right. Everything that's important to you, everything that you love, everything that has caused you great suffering or the greatest joy, every wonderful or evil person, thing, or idea that has, currently, or will be on this Earth, the place you call home, is a freakin' speck. A speck in a range of space that's incomprehensible to the human mind.

So, you, I, and everyone on this planet and the problems that we face are pretty insignificant. We're just specks upon a speck in a big, giant space. We are alone.

And again, like he says at the end, we need to cherish what we have. We have to be nice to our planet and the organisms living on it because, right now (and probably for a very long time) they're the only things we have got.

So just soak this quote, the picture, and these ideas in. Think about this for a little while and you will feel enlightened.

I also invite you to look at the Voyager website that NASA hosts which tells you all about the spacecraft and gives you some of the media that was on the disc and on the spacecraft. Also, there's this great Youtube playlist that gives all of the music that was on the disc and it really shows you the different music that was on the disc sent on the Voyager that is currently traveling through dark space, spreading the pictures, sounds, and information of mankind throughout the cosmos.

 - Aidan

Thoughts on the New iPad Mini (and it's Commercial)

I'd trade my current iPad 2 for an iPad mini.

That's how good and unique it is.

I will talk about why it's so good first and then I will dissect, what I think to be, the brilliant iPad mini commercial that Apple has released.

So, why is it worth trading an iPad 2 in for an iPad mini? I got to go to an Apple Store two days ago and try out all of the new products Apple has released (the new iPod Touch feels like you're holding nothing; just in general all of the new products are great). I finally got to try out the mini after 25 minutes of watching one person after another stealing a spot at the crowded table.

First of all, when you pick it up it's incredibly light. Not the, "Oh my God am I even holding anything" light but shockingly light nonetheless. It's noticeably lighter than the iPad 2 which is a big reason that I'd trade it in. I mostly read on my iPad and any reduction in weight is fantastic. It feels like I could hold it for hours. Furthermore, it's very thin, and as Apple puts it "pencil thin". This is also great because although my iPad isn't bulky even with a case, it can get a little tiresome to hold after a while because of it's size. The iPad mini seems to nail this perfectly because not only is it light enough to hold for extended periods of time, but it seems to be the perfect size: the screen is big enough so that text is clearly legible even at small font sizes and nothing is too small to be seen and the iPad itself is perfect for comfortably holding.

So far, I'm liking this iPad. I start browsing around on it, looking at the apps, practicing typing, watching videos and whatnot, and I realize, "this has nearly the same specs as the iPad 2 but it's even better than it" (go here for a full comparison). Although this iPad has the same A5 processer as the iPad 2 as well as the same screen resolution (which now looks slightly crisper due to its shrinkage), a couple things are better about the mini: the cameras have dramatically improved to ones slightly better than the one on my iPhone 4 (the video quality is 1080p from 720p on my iPhone 4 and the iSight camera has increased to a "HD" status; the ones on the iPad 2 are pretty bad) and there is Siri on the iPad mini as well. 

Since I liked the more compact nature of this iPad as well as the improved specs of it I thought to myself, "I would totally trade my current iPad in for this" which kind of surprised me; I always thought that a 7 inch tablet (well, in this case it's 7.9 inches which makes things surprisingly much better than regular 7 inch tablets) by Apple would provide a less than pleasant experience than the regular iPad probably because of the fact that all existing 7 inch tablets I'd come across were clunky, too constrained, and too cheap feeling. Obviously, Apple has triumphed the cheap feeling and clunky problem with their software and hardware but I was worried that a seven inch tablet would constrain iOS so much that the hardware or iOS itself wouldn't matter.

I was wrong.

That's not to say that I would choose this iPad over any other; if I had any choice, I'd choose the iPad with retina display because the screen is big and gorgeous and I, of course, do a lot of reading and video watching. But the iPad mini would be my second choice because of it's portability, lightness, and it's ability to retain all of the software and hardware elements that let it live up to the quality that Apple continuously shows.

Excellent job.

Now, for the iPad commercial. Watch it:

Why do I like it so much? Well, first of all it perks the interests of musicians as well as anybody who has heard Heart and Soul on the piano (and especially people who know it because it seems to be a song a lot of people know). Although I don't like this song anymore because it gets overplayed, them playing this song connects the audience to the commercial since it's a common song that everyone knows and gives them a sense of familiarity. Also, in the beginning it shows what's possible on the iPad if you didn't already know what you could do with it; you can play the freakin' piano on it people! If I didn't know about Garageband on the iPad, I would find this pretty cool. Then, we pan over to the iPad mini playing the primo part of this duet. This shows that the iPad mini is capable of what the regular iPad that everyone knows about does. It shows them that you don't have to sacrifice anything in order to buy an iPad mini; you can still do the extraordinary things you can do on an iPad on this smaller device. Another interesting side note is that this version of Heart and Sole is arranged slightly differently which makes it more pleasing to the ears of people (especially the musicians, and further, pianists who have heard this song a myriad of times). The notes in the later part of the commercial are slightly different and (I think) the primo part switches to playing octaves later but I digress. 

The point is that this casually, smoothly, and with a rather fun mood shows that the iPad mini does what the iPad does. Just because it's smaller, doesn't mean it sacrifices functionality like other seven inch tablets will do. Some people miss the point completely and say, "Oh great, it's showing me I can play the piano on my small iPad. Why would I want to do that?". That's not the point. The point is to show how it's the same iPad experience, but in a smaller and lighter package.

So, to sum it up: the iPad mini and it's commercial are well-built and fantastic. Awesome job, Apple.

- Aidan