Monday, May 30, 2011

A 'Reed' Pen

I found this beautiful twig lying on the ground while out walking. I stripped off what little bark was still clinging to it, smoothed out the rough parts, carved it a point, and now it's the newest addition to my drawing-tool kit. I really should cut an ink-holding groove into it, but I didn't want to mar the beautiful chisel point.


I really like this photograph, inclusive of the black negative space.

Another Amazing Find


A patch of diffuse sunlight on the sidewalk, streaming down through some leaves ...

Turned out to be spray paint.

A violin hanging on a wall, seen through a crack in the door.

Open the door all the way, and the violin is a painting on the wall.

Art -- a bridge between realities.

Something wonderful happens to one in a dream, or one conceives a great notion while in a drugged or drunken stupor...

Waking up to find it was all just a beautiful illusion. Or rather a different kind of reality -- the kind that cannot stand to be examined in the cold hard light of rational scrutiny.

Artifice -- a bridge between realities.

A child cuts the bottom of a cardboard box down the middle, draws handles on the two halves and pretends the box is a cabinet that holds mysteries; once the doors are pulled open, he would be admitted to a whole other world. To him it's as real as report cards, and a darn sight more fascinating.

A child may grow up, but not necessarily out.

A Pretty Cool Accident

It's the afternoon of Memorial Day. I'm taking it easy and just resting, enjoying the unusually quiet afternoon in downtown L.A. In fact, I was getting a little bored -- so I started fiddling around with some old photos. I happened to color-invert this image from last year's July 29 entry, and I like the result!

Looks like some B-movie scene showing souls in hell or something^, or maybe a scene from some direct-to-video science fiction movie showing an evil alien's lab with a collection of human faces used for disguise^

[Click on image to enlarge]


I fiddled with it some more and obtained this result, which I also like.


Normally, turning a photograph into its own negative will make it look unnatural and 'ghostly'. Interestingly enough though, in these images the darkness functions to some extent as a kind of color -- to me these faces look almost as if they were drawings filled in with graphite or charcoal -- and actually serves to define the features in a more natural way. I guess that's because the originals were colorless and kind of ghostly in the first place.

Sunday, May 29, 2011

One Of Those Days


Actually, today was a good day. I finally have a working range/oven a year-and-a-half after moving into this loft. It was a long wait, but it didn't cost me anything (except for the price of a new part). It's just that last Thursday was the kind of day that makes me realize that I cannot, and must not, ever be King, because I'd be commanding "Off with his head!" left and right.

Hah, I just realized the meaning of the title of this post totally depends on which face is being referred to. O.K., I think I'll designate the one on the right as my avatar -- always try to end with a knowing, evil smile, I always say^

Friday, May 27, 2011

"I've Got More Eyes Than You--"


All I can say to people like this is, "You know what happened to *Argus..."


*He had a hundred eyes -- then he lost his head.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

A Present

A birthday present, that is. Not for me, but for The One I Cannot Name. I was going to do a painting for the occasion, but for whatever reason I just couldn't get a proper start. So I ended up making an ornament -- a form of wearable art -- instead. Actually it's really an embellishment of something that I made a long time ago. Both of us being cat-lovers, I added the below detail in honor of that fact. The drawing is kind of clumsy because it's tiny in reality, but I think that's actually a good thing here.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Just A Fun Post

FAUX-CALLIGRAPHY WITH ORANGE PEEL


I like to make up strange new scripts sometimes. I guess this is something a lot of people like to do. And what's probably the same thing, I've seen maps of imaginary places, executed by authors of fantasy novels and also by psychiatric patients. It must be something archetypal, having to do with the basic urge to create and the desire for interesting novelties to keep us entertained. Besides, it's fun to pretend we know something that nobody else knows.

It's so fun, even God indulges in it.

Selfish Jerk

All is right with me and The One I Cannot Name.

What was I trying to get out of all that drama I created for both of us? Validation? A sense of importance? Reassurance that I matter to someone, no matter what the psychic cost to that person?

I'm a selfish jerk.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

A Folksy Post



If I were sitting on a park bench eating a sandwich, and suddenly found myself being lifted high into the air by space aliens bent on abducting me for a medical experiment, I probably would either panic and go into hysterics, or become paralyzed with terror. In either case, the sandwich would be forgotten in quick order.


I found this snail munching on a leaf in the middle of the sidewalk. I picked it up to move it somewhere safe, fully expecting it to retreat into its shell in alarm -- but no, it brought the leaf along and went on eating placidly, like a tiny, slow-witted cow of the air.


Perhaps one of those down-home radio show hosts could turn this into one of those down-home homilies about knowing what's truly important in life -- like a full belly and a warm back, as my father was fond of saying.

Rather an atypical piece of folksy wisdom from a man who did not grow up poor, but then my father was a strange man.

Today's Hummingbird Photo

The Return Of Chickenhead

THE SKY MONSTER IS BACK!
요괴 닭대가리 돌아오다


When this creature first put in an appearance over Downey, California seven months ago (October 3, 2010 to be precise) to swallow the Moon, she (I think it's a hen head) was weird and terrifying beyond words. But this time, she's looking considerably less aggressive... in fact, it kind of looks as though she were dozing. Maybe she's gulped down some other world's moon and is now sleeping it off. I guess that's good for us. If you have to cross a tiger's path, wait until he's finished his dinner, I always say.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

I'm A Hater

TOO SUBTLE FOR MY OWN GOOD

The other day I happened to post a comment on another blog that I enjoy visiting (a way more popular and famous one than this, naturally) -- a comment that satirized another, prior commenter for his obvious bigotry and special pleading.

My mistake was putting it in the form of a sarcastic faux-agreement. Those of you who have read some of my older posts here may have noticed that even when I'm joking I tend to still wear the straight man's hat; I flattered myself that my comment was amusing and rather witty, but I guess the humor was a little too dry -- the blog owner clearly took my comment at face value and thought I was really agreeing with the hate-poster. So of course I needed to clarify my position, so as not to go down in internet history as a hater myself.

It so happened that in the meantime the jerk commenter had put up another diatribe in the same vein (I think he also must have thought I was really agreeing with him, and was encouraged thereby... oy), so by way of an explanation I posted a second comment twitting him again, and made sure that this time the sarcasm was a little more obvious.

Or so I thought -- whaddayaknow, apparently I was still being too subtle -- or perhaps the initial misunderstanding had so tainted the blog owner's impression of me that it was now poisoning his interpretation of everything I said, because his reaction was even more openly negative.

(EDIT: For those that are curious, what I had said at this point was "...That is why... if we happen to witness a crime in progress, we never report it to the police unless that crime is much worse than any that we ourselves have committed. That way, there is no risk of losing face"; at which the blog owner retorted "That is one of the dumbest things I've ever heard"; Looking back, I find it amazing the man didn't realize I was only joking; but as I said, once having decided I was a rat jerk, he was now unable to consider my remarks in an unprejudiced manner -- see how important it is to create a positive first impression?)

So, somewhat desperately, I posted an explanation (a literal one this time) of what I really meant by my earlier remarks (I hate having to explain a joke -- but whaddayagonnado), and to my relief, this time he got the message, responding with a good-natured apology and an admission that I had 'got him' -- whew!^ ^ Not that I set out deliberately to say 'Punk'd!' in the first place...

Oh well, it's not like this is the first time my mouth got me in trouble...

Monday, May 16, 2011

Toward The West

WHERE THERE IS DAY AT NIGHT, AND NIGHT IN THE DAY


And once I get to the tower that reaches into the clouds --

will I want to stay there...

or keep going?

Iridescence At 6:52 AM

ANOTHER RAINBOW EYE



A Building On 6th Street

WITH A VIEW OF THE SKY AND ANOTHER BUILDING


Yes, I am. Desperatly looking for order, reason and simplicity.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Saturday, May 14, 2011

I Don't Know What To Do

I'M OF DIVIDED MIND


It's been some time without acknowledgment from The One I Cannot Name.

It may be that after two and a half years The One has finally come to senses and has decided to end things with me.

I'd like to ask what's going on, but the fact is, if this is indeed what's happening, it's the Right Thing To Do, and I have no right to protest.

So for now, there's nothing to be done about it.

Am I A Fossil?


As I said before, it's always The One You Love.

More Old Art

SO OLD, IT'S A FOSSIL


I painted this off a photograph of the remains of a long-dead fish, with a few 'contemporary' details added.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

I Make A Fossil

Long ago, I read the sad story of a Professor Beringer in 18th-century Germany. He had hired some students to find and bring him fossils, but the boys made fake fossils of such amazing things as weird unknown creatures, celestial objects such as fallen stars, and even the Tetragrammaton. I'm not sure what he made of them (perhaps he believed in a form of spontaneous generation -- the weirder 'fossils' then could be explained as examples of the natural generative powers of the earth), but in any case he believed them all to be authentic and paid to have published a lavishly illustrated tome expounding his ideas based upon their 'evidence'.

He finally realized he'd been duped when he came across a 'fossil' of his own name, supposedly, and subsequently went about spending all his money buying up all the copies of the book he'd gone to so much trouble to have published, eventually dying a poor and broken man.

I like fossils. I also like fake fossils, whether deliberate hoaxes or accidental lookalikes. It's fun finding something that isn't a fossil but looks like one. I've even made my own.

Here is one such 'fossil', fashioned out of Sculpey® (polymer clay).


I think it's a kind of sea lily. I think it looks pretty good (I mean pretty naturalistic), but the color was a wrong choice; I should repaint it to look more like weathered stone.

Just Plain Depressed

And sometimes I feel like this (RE: July 20, 2010):



And like this:

Monday, May 2, 2011

Hummingbird!

THIS WAS GOING TO BE A SAD POST...

Today I went to take a photo of the 'hummingbird tree', to serve as a kind of epitaph, for both the dead hummingbird I found and brought home (April 26th), and the presumed end to my hummingbird photo-taking. It was going to be a sad picture, the tree all blooming with white flowers but no hummingbird to enjoy them.

But then... (Center)



I followed the little blur with my eyes until it alighted upon a branch (upper right quadrant, top).



And clicked away as the bird flitted about, seemingly in high spirits (center).



So was I (center again)