Saturday, November 28, 2009

Animals Are So Much More Fun Than Humans

Enough with the holiday blues! Time for what's important..shameless fun!

Friday, November 27, 2009

Lonely Holidays

Holidays are so strange. It doesn't get much more lonely than the two or three days a year when 99% of the people around us are with friends and family. Fighting or laughing, they're together, in the warm embrace of a fantasy, anyway. It's weird not to have that in any fashion. It's weird to be alone on those days that are so devoted to the ideal of loving togetherness.

And you know, it's really the ideal that we all long for, not the harsh reality of the Holidays. I've shared plenty of holidays with my family that were less than ideal or loving. We all wanted that, we just couldn't seem to bring it off within the parameters of our sick, sad little group. I've been alone on Thanksgiving and Christmas more than once, too. The first time was the hardest, though I only remember the feelings, not much detail.

I'll be alone again this year, and I know I'll be sad and lonely. But honestly? There's not a lot of difference between being completely alone and having Peter in the next room. A little, but not a lot. We're like two objects in separate orbits that occasionally overlap, coming together to create a grocery list, or to put those groceries away. We seldom cook or eat together, or talk about our days. It doesn't get much lonelier than that, not really.

So I take a deep breath, straighten my back, plaster a knowledgeable smile of resignation on my face, and go forward. What choice is there?

Love 'em if ya got 'em, folks.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Feast for the Eyes

You can ALWAYS tell when I'm in a good mood, for I reach for two things - music and colour...and where better to find them in glorious combination than BOLLYWOOD!?! And the always perfect Aishwarya Rai dancing Nimbooda - Hum Dil De Chuke Sanam is food enough to fill anyone's cup to overflowing! Enough talk, enjoy this feast for the eyes before you fill your belly tomorrow!

You say you want something a little more contemporary? Well then, try this blend of modern with the gorgeous stars of Bollywood:

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Sunday Uplift - Allison Iraheta

Last Year's American Idol was ALL about Adam Lambert and his glamrock power style, but I had my eye on the 16 year old rocker chicklet who came in fourth place, Ms. Allison Iraheta. I was certain that this little gal surely was destined for greatness, from her cute 'tude to her fearless performance style, so I was pretty pleased to encounter her kickin' first release "Friday I'll Be Over U" Get ready for one that's gonna stick in your head and make you wanna DANCE!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

My Friends, Ravens and Crows

I have loved crows and ravens forever, and defended them to people who think of them as pests; scavengers, carrion birds, and destructive creatures. Fortunately, since the general populace has begun turning more and more "green," scavengers are seen for the intuitive recyclers I've always known them to be, and more and more people are willing to share our bounty with the creatures of the wild with whom we are inextricably linked. I love vultures, too, but this is about how amazing and just plain old SMART my dark-feathered friends are. You may have seen some of the following videos, but they're worth watching, whether as a repeat or not.

Monday, November 16, 2009

My Mini-Show

Mini-Show at the Library

Just after the first of the month, I was asked by the Port Townsend Library staff if I could pull together a display of my artwork for their case dedicated to such things. So I ran home and grabbed some pieces, and created a small show that includes Three Skull House (the skulls bob up and down when the handle is turned), the Today Is Not Tomorrow - Raven journal, the mica bound journal, a representative group of ATC/ACEOs, and one of my favourite dolls; Bill Witkowski, Vampire Accountant. Here are some photos of the various pieces...

Bill Witkowski, Vampire Accountant
(12" tall)

Bill and his vampire cat

Mountain Raven (3.5 x 2.5")

Safe Harbour (3.5 x 2.5")

Raven In the Snow (3.5 x 2.5")

Today Is Not Tomorrow journal (5 x 7")

The display I created was liked so much, I was asked if I could do one for December, too, so I am busy working on a Winter Solstice theme. Stay tuned!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

Sunday Uplift, Redux - This Way Up

I just decided we all needed more of a real lift on this gloomy November Sunday. This short is so wonderful, and just fills the bill of giving you glimpse into my mood.

This Way Up - Watch more amazing videos here

Sunday Uplift - Mars and Beyond

In the midst of the dark chaos that was my uber-dysfunctional family, I ingested a wonderful diet of science and art, and ended up with a lobe dedicated to each discipline. Science was often presented in an artistic manner when I was a kid, especially by Disney. And so I would like to present a glimpse into an example of the type of animation that formed my strange mind via an ungainly post of multiple video parts. I hope you'll enjoy this, I know I did.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

What is Art?

Someone posted this in a forum I frequent, and I thought I'd post the questions - and my own answers - here. I'm interested in hearing from anyone who feels like stepping up to the, comment section. The questions posed are in bold font.

What is art?

Art's a LOT like religion (for some of us it IS our religion) in that what works for one person doesn't necessarily work for another. Likewise the definition of same. For ME, art is that which moves my soul in a positive direction. Doesn't mean I'm all about bunnies and butterflies, though. I am particularly fond of strange oddities, said fondness often utterly confusing my "normal" friends. That said, I am also the first to call bullshit on what I call "Art School/Critic Crap-speak." Just because a guy CAN shit on a canvas in the middle of a crowd does NOT make it art because of its supposed avant-garde aroma (so to speak). Codswallop and rubbish I cry! But like religion, art is enourmously personal, so who am I really to say that act of defecation isn't art? It sure as shit isn't MY idea of art (pun intended), 'cause my soul isn't moved to anything but disgust, and so-called art that is repulsive doesn't make the cut for my inner gallery. Sadness I gladly incorporate, but not something that destroys the spirit rather than heals.

Why is art important?

One of the only things that makes humans worthwhile is our ability to express our feelings through art. Sure, elephants and apes paint, and maybe they're expressing their feelings through art, too. Hard to say since we currently have no metrics that allow us to measure their feelings with any degree of accuracy. Hell, we've JUST figured out that fish feel pain (well, DUH). In order to evolve as a species, we must grow as a society, and that requires the Individual to be aware of both others' and their own feelings. I wish I could report that human beings are good at being mindful of our emotions, either collectively or individually, but sadly we're not. And so art - music, film, sculpture, painting, textile, etc. etc. etc. becomes essential to our progress as a species.

Growing up as I did during the depth of the Cold War, I have been a fan of dystopian fiction usually involving a small group of humans trying to survive some terrible apocalypse. With almost no exceptions, the individuals chosen by writers, filmmakers, television honchos, etc. as essential members of their depicted band have all been useful in terms of their "hard" worth. That is, their ability to help their band survive via their expertise in some methodology involving machines or science, guns or foraging, and even the occasional leadership role (usually a former military man or a political figure). What is almost never factored in is the enourmous importance of art in the underlying health of the individual and social human psyche. Artists tell stories, we sing songs and play instruments, we bring colour and light and laughter to dark spaces...but even more importantly, we bring an extremely adept ability to think outside the box.

Akira Kurosawa said "Being an artist means never averting your eyes." I don't strictly agree with that statement, but I really get what he was saying. There's an inherent curiosity that artists are born with that causes us to examine that which others find unthinkable or repugnant. Because we don't avert our eyes; because we are deeply and undeniably curious, every artist I know of is capable of looking at almost any object or situation or problem and coming up with a dozen different ways to see and/or solve the situation. Artists are essential to the survival not just of our society, but of our core physical selves!

And why are YOU an artist, rather than anything else?

You mean I have a choice? Believe me, I have tried to be something else, but I end up miserable, angry, and suicidal. My name may change, and has, but I am an artist no matter what. It's as simple as that.