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my eBay bargains
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  Thank you for visiting. That's awesome of you. You'll discover some great, fun, and useful stuff here. I'm Matthew Lyles Hornbostel. I'm an artist, and I made this site - part of the 'Triumphant Artists Web Network'.   It may not be super successful, yet, but I am not giving up. That grit, growth, and perseverance is what I define to be 'triumph'. As for the word 'artists', many others helped me get these projects done. I may be the visible core of this, but a lot of other people have acted in my videos and games. And even more have watched or played them.

With all that help, I'm developing a lot of awesome free stuff for you, for release online. I'm streamlining this site and making it look and run better. It should be great on phones, tablets, or PCs!  Some helpful tips for viewing this website - the most important tip is that your view of my sites may be 'cached'.  So, make sure to refresh pages to see the newest version of this content.   You can view other tips here.

This site focuses on art - it has shops to buy art, resources for creating art, and of course many types of art.  Shops to buy art include storefronts on eBay, Etsy, Itch.IO, and  Art resources include a lot of stock media, as well as many informative articles.   And the art generally is visual. That includes handmade still art, comics, indie videos, and indie games. Everything here is independent in every common use of the word!  I've got a lot of cool creative projects I'm working on right now, and you can see some fun example clips in the video below if you click play: 

What's planned for the next few months?

I'm an independent multimedia artist, and with the ongoing help of friends and family,

I'll be releasing a wide range of exciting creative projects and free stuff available nowhere else.

The current state of my work is usually visible on blog posts.

There are many diverse projects I've finished or am trying to complete. Dozens of imaginative things I either made and need to post online, or am currently making.

I don't know if you'll like my projects; that depends on your own personal tastes. 

If you like silly comedy videos, action sequences with a lot of visually impressive VFX and 3d animation work,

handmade art like paintings and drawings, miniature & practical effects and miniature art, board games, strategy, arcade and puzzle games,

first-person exploration of imaginative game worlds, interesting stories and sharp but sometimes a bit too-wordy dialogue... then you'll love my web network!  

I've shown a lot of my work to a lot of people locally and the phrase I keep hearing is "When will it be done?"

That applies to many things I'm doing that people are impatient about and want to see.  Many people want all of my work to be made available online. 

You can get a sense of why by looking at the intriguing preview material I've already put in the [VIDEOS] and [GAMES] sections, but that only scratches the surface.

Much, and I mean 85+%, of what I do is not complete, not publicly visible yet.

Often my productions are delayed due to unexpected problems, gaps in funding, feature creep, or simply my efforts to make the projects turn out as well as possible.

In the case of some projects, mainly videos, legal concerns and lack of clear signed release permission from all contributors, pose risks. I've overhauled tons of older videos and old projects, and still there are issues with this. I may just bite the bullet and just post these things soon unless someone directly requested that something stay offline. If some random person holding up a sprawling 10 or 20-person project from online release - we'll call the non-specific person 'Fred' - wouldn't sign a current, date-specific, legally valid document agreeing to terms of release because holdout cast-member Fred would not respond to my messages, and I couldn't reach Fred, then that means I will simply eventually post with verbal and informal consent but no legal agreement documentation in place. And just deal with the fallout if there is any. Because most of the people I have cast are pretty reasonable about this. I think most Freds involved will be okay with the idea of internet-comedy fame once I start to send them unexpected residual payments from me. I will be as generous as I can with such pay but keep in mind: Typical internet CPM (value per thousand page views) averages around 15 cents or 20 at most. That's typical. So a video here would need to be seen 5000-6000 times, to generate a single dollar. Given that these videos' revenue is often split among multiple people who were involved in making them, that means a video with one million views may only result in $25-50 per actor in the video. That said, split profits on all DVD and BluRay sales might boost that significantly. I will be as generous as possible with all of this though. I promise.


I encourage you to watch the main page video and browse the site with the round blue buttons above - especially 'videos', 'games', and 'still art' - to look at works I'm developing within each art category. 
Think about the fact that I have a backlog of roughly 10 hours of fun video productions that (with a bit of tweaking) could be cleaned up and put online, that's comedy, action, sci-fi, fantasy and other videos,
many of them fairly campy but they have, in all, over a thousand VFX shots and a few thousand dollars put into them so far. I hope to post them all on over time.

And I'd like to not only revise the old library of 'home video indie blockbusters', but keep making and adding new ones. 
Then there are the games, a huge list of game projects I poured tons of time and resources into, many of which are near completion but not yet complete, often due to limits of time or funding or both.  
There's a ton of great stuff there, some entertaining and fun projects and admittedly some mediocre stuff too, and I want to see it all online instead of languishing on my hard drives, inching forward at a snail's pace. 
I think it can be acheived, and done even faster if my creative product lines that actually sell [on eBay, etc] actually start to turn a profit instead of breaking even or losing money on most sold items!



Check out my eBay shops for the rest of 2019, because although the prices have begun to increase slightly, generally they're still amazing value and there are superb new product lines on the way to eBay and Itch.IO,

including games, & video collections on DVD, new stock video content, self-published booklets, concept art collections, and other products I'm launching shortly.

What makes this even better?  The unique handcrafted art items and more, ship for free within the United States.

  I've traditionally barely broken even on eBay and some of the early stuff especially was in 'loss leader' category. But as time passes and my audience grows, and my commentary becomes less whiny and more silly, and I develop a strong track record, I think competition for my listings will continue to rise and the winning bidders will be paying a bit more than in the past.
I do continue to underprice many items, and my ratings remain 100% positive with 350+ ratings so far.

This vibrant image below, for example, was listed on Etsy for some time before moving to eBay, a gouache painting of a winter sunset, with a village, forest, mountains and lake. 

It's a landscape on canvas, it sold for under $4 in the end.

On eBay I sell predesigned works like that but I'll also take commissions. 

That means for a minimal cost, even sometimes with an opening bid of under a dollar in the case of auctions, I'll do my best to make you a good acrylic or gouache painting, colored pencil drawing, or oil pastel artwork of whatever subject you request. It's pretty, but it's also pretty amazing. When you land an unexpected bargain on a listing, and that turns out better than you could've expected, that's win-win for everybody involved!

And finally, there's my own shop, on, with even more varied options for commissioned art and other stuff.

That's an even better place to find my deals than eBay now, because my eBay shop's well-established and is comparatively new. So I'm discounting things like crazy there and prepared to take major losses on most items on my own shop. If you notice later on, the bottom of each page has a random banner ad for some of my sites & projects, but once in a while you might get lucky, load a page and BOOM - coupon code for your first order. The best ones are as much as 90% off!

Plus there's also my blog on that same website, which features the latest news and updates on my creative projects and the state of my web network.


Again:  Here are some tips for viewing this website. 

I had this swath of wordy whining here at one point about how I was struggling to get anything moving forward - but it's gone now as of March 2019. Things are still tough for me but I'm trying not to ask for your help every five seconds. There are many others who are far worse off.

So I'll focus on them. To that end, I'll let you know that lists a lot of underfunded but verifiably highly efficient and effective charities. These account for much of my past giving.

The Against Malaria Foundation for example, can save a human life for an average cost of $200.00. That's a great idea as far as I'm concerned!

So, even if you are not going to buy from me, on eBay or Etsy, or Itch.IO or any of my shops, that's okay. But do consider looking through the GiveWell charities and see if there's one you'd like to support even if not supporting me or my friends/family by picking up a fantastic art work thingy.


I've struggled to get my projects done over the years - maybe I have too many ideas and need to focus on just one at a time!


However, my eBay shop continues to gain momentum, climbing to 350+ ratings, all positive, on amazingly awesome and inexpensive creative products like my handmade art [made to order based on the subject of your choice, sometimes for as low as $0.99 opening bid or even less]. 

A lot of my eBay success is allowing me to expand both to new eBay product lines, and even a new WordPress blog/shop , but the prices are (for now) still often ridiculously low.


Yeah. I freelanced doing transcription and the like, for as low as about $1.35/hour in the worst cases. I'm now shifting away from that. Lately, I am focused more on the idea that I should raise my prices a bit, and focus on what I excel at, and I'll insist on a typical minimum rate of $4/hour when freelancing for others doing video editing, visual effects work, 3d assets for game productions, web design, etc. $4/hr for this kind of work still offers employers immense value.

I couldn't land a 3d animation job in the increasingly crowded visual effects or games industries. I was too honest and not good at selling myself, autism seems to have stigma attached to it, and that plus major gaps in work experience raised red flags that effectively left me unemployed in an official sense. Unofficially, I work my butt off with low or no pay every day and am probably the most motivated and diligent 'unemployed' person you've ever met. If you hire me to work on your freelance gig, you'll get tremendous value from a bright and focused person who other employers foolishly missed out on.

Here's my basic background: I reached the rank of Eagle as a boy scout with Troop 4, I graduated with a Bachelor's degree from University of Houston, a GPA above 3.6, and Communications/Media Production major, Studio Art minor. I've spent some time with a group called the nonPareil Institute. I did not click with them socially or creatively even though in theory I should be a good fit 'because I'm high-functioning autistic'. But that didn't work out. I am now taking gigs online and launching products independently because all the other options have evaporated. I could just give up and live as a dependent forever, but I won't. I can't. I love this sort of work and I am convinced sooner or later it'll pay off. I have both broad and depp skill sets, because with my projects I was the driving force - nobody else cared but I needed the ideas realized so I learned what I needed to make things happen by doing all the work on my own. When I make a video, for example, I write, direct, edit, am the camera operatior/cinematographer, set and costume designer, prop master, actor [along with other unknown actors] and editor, sound editor, VFX artist/3d animator, and distributor. Nobody else would do anything for my projects, so in my obsession I learned to do everything at least passably.


You And as for the employers hiring me at $4/hr, or customers buying my sale items? You all rock, I don't want to take you for granted and I'll do everything I'm able to exceed your expectations as a vendor, providing you outstanding value. Heck, I'm even prepared to take a loss on some items if that helps - I've done that fairly often actually.  


Other people don't get how to make a VFX-video blockbuster comedy with impressive production values, or a video game that's equally amazing and epic, for under $1000. 
I do.  It comes from necessity, having a ton of hard-won experience, having made a lot of mistakes and learned from them, reading extensively, practicing, watching tutorials on Youtube, and developing a broad skill set, and being willing to do 95% of the work involved in your personal projects by yourself, unpaid.
Every dollar winds up on the screen, or in the game, it's not wasted or misallocated.  I learned very quickly that that was the only way I could get my vision realized with what I had.  I don't want to be rich. 
I just want to have enough to make my ideas a reality and to make a lot of cool things - enough to make the projects I envision making and have the world able to enjoy them, laugh at the jokes in my comedies or get wrapped up in the stories I tell, get excited by the action sequences, amazed by the visuals.  In the conventional video and video game world, 95+% of the budget is salary.  But really, if there are no salaries, there's no reason you can't make something massive that looks and sounds like a million bucks with just a few thousand of them.

And while this is not technically a non-profit studio - I think the term is 'sole proprietorship' - it'll continue to maintain an indie mentality and methodology no matter how much money I make or how much things improve.  So pretty much anything I earn over, say, $5k or so per year, I'd like to give to other people, because as far as I'm concerned, it's beyond what is actually needed to cover basic expenses and my own projects.  To groups I love, people I care about, even total strangers who happen to need help.  Because it will make more difference to them than it would to me.  I am known as a 'Santa' by family because of my many gifts to them at Christmas, and my friends know I cover the costs of our meals out routinely.  My friend Michael has described my birthdays as 'Hobbit birthdays' because when it's my birthday I give gifts to the people who attend, not vice versa!  I give to charities rated as highly efficient and effective by organizations like GiveWell,. If you want to help the world, please take a look at what they, or other valid sources, list as charitable causes that actually are effective.


Even now we're looking at an EPIC WIN for everyone - me, my contributing actors, the audience who see more stuff here, and even arguably the freelance employers. It's a terrific value for those who hire me, especially as I continue expanding my skills, equipment, software, available product lines, and my ability to do outstanding work generally.  I've recently launched a video channel through and some content there already gives an indication of my VFX skills.  I want to release video games and multimedia content, still art and comic books.  I want a lot of great stuff to be posted here by the end of 2019 and I am now convinced that this is entirely viable.

And given the fact that I've seen thousands - over 30,000 - people visit this site, just in the last three months, I'd say things are now clearly headed in that direction.  And I've got a long list of inventive ideas that could multiply that exponentially over the next few years.



-Hire me at $4/hr to edit video, do color grading, to work as an editor, compositor, visual effects artist, DVD / Blu Ray author -  or you could hire me to make handcrafted art on paper or canvas, or to make miniatures, or 3d game assets, level design, web graphics/design, maybe Photoshop editing and some other types of graphics work.  You'll find, as have my eBay customers, that my work is a great bargain even at this price, as I am pretty good at what I do and the cost involved is still absurdly cheap, way below minimum wage.  Buying my art or sending a gig my way in 2019 while it is still cheap and I'm still largely unknown, while there's less competition for more hours of my freelance time, would clearly be a superb value for money, all factors considered, even if what I create isn't entirely perfect.  There are modern art works that sell for millions and aren't that interesting.  There are lots of old works by masters who are long dead.  And then there's my work, a miniscule fraction of the price of those old and new items, that's detailed, shows some degree of actual craftmanship and skill, but also a bit of style and imagination, and is genuinely affordable for you to purchase.  A search of the top five most popular made-to-order commission art services on Google, reveals that for a 12"x16" acrylic painting portrait of a person or pet, the available price range is $130 at lowest and $330 at the highest.  Some of them will claim $50, then charge extra fees for the acrylic paint medium, fees added for every subject added, and shipping fees on top of all of that!  You could order a custom personalized made-to-order item from my shop on eBay and have it made based on a subject of your own choice at that size, for as low as $0.99 as a starting opening bid on auctions, or as little as $9.99 or so for Buy It Now.  It's not a lot of cash, but if that seems risky somehow, even with the 30-day full-refund policy, you can try buying an already-designed work which is more predictable.  (I'm launching a new batch of pastel art there soon!)  The only downside, the way I sometimes fall short as a vendor, is that sometimes I miss the 3-day shipping target by a bit, it may take more like a week in some cases where I'm unexpectedly getting a ton of 'Buy it now' orders all at once and some of them are really big artworks that I know I need to dedicate many hours to to maintain a good quality level.  You can look at my ratings on eBay to see how many people have appreciated my work.

You'll also soon be able to order prints on my own shop soon too - not just inexpensive photo prints, but printed T shirts, and posters, made by me without a middleman getting in the way. (Zazzle and CafePress are good but they'll charge you a bit more than needed.)  And those could be your own custom-request design too if you want that.

You can order art from me on eBay, which is where I've accumulated most of my sales so far, from people like you - here you can order custom, handmade, made-to-order art based on whatever subject you choose.

I've been described by many customers there - check my eBay account ratings, 350+ of them so far, fully 100% of them positive at this time, my ratings are solidly positive both as a buyer and seller:

-"Fast but generous with his talent, great sense of light and color, communicative"
-"A lot of detail went into this beautiful painting of my past yorkie Thank you!"
-"Better than described, fast shipping...just love it"
-"Incredible! So special! Great work! Thank you!"
-"Great working with and would highly recommend to everyone. Thanks again. ****"
-"Very fast and great piece! Thank you very much!"
-"Excellent will shop again real artist( legendary )"
-"Artist did great work. Very pleased with painting"
-"I can not thank you enough for this. It is beautiful and I love it. Thank you!"

The same outstanding customer service you see there extends to my other venues, even if they are not yet as popular or well-known as my eBay shop.  Yes, it's true that I may not always be the fastest (I can get backlogged and I try to do as good a job as I can, on every item I sell, which at times means delays) but I DO deliver the work as promised, often with far better quality than the recipient expects, especially given the bargain pricing.

If you feel like these items 'made to order' are still risky, which I can understand since you don't see it or know how it will actually turn out until after you've paid, there are also items I've made in advance, my own designs, and those are also available.  

You can order already-existing handmade artworks instead.  They're faster to deliver given that they are already made, you know exactly what the item looks like and what you'll get before ordering, and the prices are actually slightly lower per size of the artwork!

There was also a Zazzle shop, where I sold prints of a few of the items I'd attempted to sell via Etsy. Now the print sales are being shifted to my own [Hornbostel Productions] shop because that way I will be able to deliver similar quality for cheaper prices than Zazzle can!

That shop is my own shop - an SSL secured venue using WordPress and WooCommerce, which offers much of the best of all of the above options, but even cheaper and with no 'middleman' raising the effective price with tacked on fees.
Even setting aside the issue of Etsy or Ebay or Zazzle fees, which can increase pricing in effect by 8-23%, there are additional deeper discounts that'll be available only on my own shop as I am trying to establish a track record beyond the third-party places like eBay and am prepared to take some significant losses in order to gain the first few positive customer reviews on my own store.  There are great coupon codes available ($5 off codes) and a loyalty rewards program with 12.5% cash back in effect, plus a further-reduced membership option on top of all of that - $5/year VIP pricing - all of this going WAY beyond the prices being already lower than on my eBay venue! 


If you have any questions about any of the services I offer or have a specific creative job you want accomplished related to video/vfx production, handmade art, 3D assets for a game, etc, there's also the option to email me.  I will respond to input on the 'Forums' of, and you are free to post messages there about whatever topic is relevant, like offering me a gig, asking a question or two, or discussing my games, videos, art or other projects.


-Spread the word about my websites, or my specific projects/services, and share a link by email or using a post on forums/blogs you frequent, somewhere relevant where you think people might like something I did. Please don't get spammy with this though.

-Follow me or share my posts on social media.  You can also join my mailing list through the Social Media page [or] via the link on the forums.

-Bookmark this page and visit every now and then to see what significant new things have been released, maybe once a month or so.

Right now I have a few thousand people who are doing this, which is nothing short of astounding to me. Thank you all so much! Bonus, if you saw the supporters page, you know you can actually make a bit of cash directing people to my site with the affiliate program! If they buy anything there, you could make a small percentage of that sale amount as a thank you for delivering the sale. And it's a safe SSL-secured shop, from a vendor who offers outstanding work at low prices with a successful track record on eBay. So if you want to join that program, that's right here.

- Do something else that helps me develop my projects a bit that I'd like to release online but which costs you nothing or very little and which might even benefit you. There are a few extra examples of ideas in that category here.

- Buy handmade art or my new stock media DVD on my eBay shop or buy a copy of my new project 'Miniature Multiverse' after its launch on Itch.IO. The Miniature Multiverse website is here.  Or you could let people know about the project, before the full game is ready to launch.

I KNOW ALL OF THIS HAS BEEN A LONG READ, and it bothers me to be requesting all this, but I am trying to get a lot of projects done that I'm convinced are, or could potentially be, great entertainment.  But if you don't care about any of what I'm doing with videos or games yet because you don't yet know enough about, or understand (or like) what I'm trying to finish, I totally get that. That's your call. Some of my stuff is admittedly pretty campy, quirky or offbeat, so if you don't see potential in anything I'm working on, you're free to ignore my work. I'd understand, especially after this irritating monologue or whatever you call it.  But I really do hope you'll all stick around, partly because some amazing, even astonishing things are going to show up here for free pretty soon, and partly because if you'd like custom artwork for one of your projects, I can help you fulfill your creative vision cheaply and efficiently.  Feel free to contact me on the Forums.

Thank you for reading this. Thank you so much for being a visitor here. I'm amazed and grateful by how much support you all have given to me and to my creative work, and whenever you make a choice to support my work, I'll work hard to try to give you something stellar in return over the months that follow. Thank you.