Saturday, January 31, 2009

the animal in man...

Today I came across a story on TV5Monde, a french broadcast station also available in the United States, concerning some photographs of unusual animal behavior. Apparently these photographs were taken in France, and the photographer sold the pictures to a national newspaper (perhaps Le Monde, Le Parisien or Le Figaro?).

Here in the first picture, a female barn swallow is injured and the condition is fatal. The news report stated she was hit by a car as she swooped low across the road.

Shortly thereafter her mate brings her food and attends to her with love and compassion.

He brought her food again but finds her dead. He tried to move her...a rarely-seen effort for swallows

Aware that his companion is dead and will never come back to him again, he cries with adoring love. Barn swallows mate for life, as do many other species of birds, including swans.

He stood beside her, saddened of her death. Finally aware that she would never return to him, he stood beside her body with sadness and sorrow.

He stands vigil to his lost companion.

Human beings believe we are superior to the animals with whom we share this earth, but I believe we are not. In a lot of ways, they are like humans. They have feelings and some intelligence. The animal is seen as an elemental reduction of the human, stripped of all extraneous complication. We name sports teams after rams or bulls and automobiles after cougars or jaguars. Our language speaks of crocodile tears and fish eyes. Humans seem to have an innate capacity to project human characteristics in this way. 

Most cultures possess a long-standing fable tradition with anthropomorphised animals as characters that can stand as commonly recognised types of human behaviour. Its sad to see them mistreated. In social situations people dissemble, distort and posture, hiding weaknesses, scheming to alter perceptions. Animals do not. In their realm resemblances are revelations, eliminating ambiguities and uncertainties. Most animals don't foul their own nests or their habitats, but consider what a mess we humans have made of them. Animals have much to teach us, if only we would open our eyes and hearts to learn. 

Dedicated to Oreo, Skip, and Bear along with conejo, the greatest of them all

Don't approach a goat from the front, a horse from the back, or a fool from any side.”

~Yiddish Proverb

Monday, January 26, 2009

obscured by clouds...

Recently, I purchased a high-end amateur camera (Canon 40D) in order to document some of the work I have done over the years for posterity and to eventually make prints of a select few of them.  After doing some research on different lenses and lighting, f-stop, filters and aperture, I eventually wound up with a whole bunch of supplies that would enable me to take photos at events, portraits, landscapes and a variety of things unrelated to art.

What these flashes and ringlights and gadgets have taught me beyond their practical purpose is that the perfection of the human body in its form and function. Even basic lens are quite large, much larger than the human eye, with many layers of glass and
silent motors necessary to replicate the depth of field produced by the human eye. 

As for the human does it compare to a lens? Our eyes are not even Canon L quality — poor quality control, or so many people would not need supplemental lenses; bad distortions are common (astigmatism); not even a hood comes with it, you have to buy you some sunglasses for that; and you're stuck using conversion lenses (binoculars, telescopes) to change focal length; and the macro capability is limited and gets worse with age — the postprocessing we have is simply great!

“A dreamer is one who can only find his way by moonlight, and his punishment is that he sees the dawn before the rest of the world"

~Oscar Wilde

Sunday, January 25, 2009

interstellar overdrive...

"Working hard" (on facebook) on the set of the La Pregunta Arts Café commercial

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

your possible pasts...

Usually people involved with the arts gravitate to like-minded individuals, in their personal and intimate lives. The arts is a profession that end when our lives are no more. Their is no retirement age for artists such as poets, sculptors, or photographers. 

People stuck in the perpetual 9-to-5 grind are often unable to cope with the spontaneity of random gigs and jobs and projects, the amount of politicking and networking involved in following our passions and the abrupt cancellations of events with our families and loved ones. 

How to reconcile the solitude that creativity requires with the love that artists, indeed all humans, desire? Creativity becomes incidental at times in the life history of a given relationship. There exists the possibility for monumental disorder, power struggles, madness and suicide, emotional chaos, and intense and often deviant political and sexual lives- all giving the clear message that creative people inflict immense damage on those who dare to love them.

I have the found the best artist-artist relationships I have been in are ones where we are both "artists" but in different fields. For one, I don't gravitate towards fine artists but rather graphic artists, spoken word artists, and even photographers. When I was in a relationship with another painter I felt like I was constantly in competition or constantly being critiqued. However when i was in a relationship with an actor it was more supportive versus competitive. But then again, what do I know, the conditions in which love grows, is always subject to change.

"Il n'est rien de réel que le rêve et l'amour" (Nothing is real but dreams and love)

~Anna de Noailles

Monday, January 12, 2009

absolutely curtains...

Amantes imposibles prefiero no pensar en los ideales ya que todo ideal encierra una identidad con una realidad confusa en donde nunca se llega a entender la dimension real del amor causa del mayor bien.
Pero no limitemos el amor acerquemoslo mas bien a una felicidad personal e intrasferible a un don a una capacidad creativa y entonces entenderemos la verdadera personalidad de mi ser que tuvo que entregarse a los horrores del desierto para llegar a comprender la causa de su autentica plenitud inamovible.

Impossible lovers prefer not to think about the ideals now that everything ideal encompasses a perfect identity with a confused reality where they never come to understand the true dimension of love causes the greatest good. 
Let us become nearer to love, nearer a personal and untransferable happiness, a gift of creative capacity and then we will understand the true personality of my being that had to give itself to the horrors of the desert in order to understand the cause of its true immovable plenitude.

Rarely do events occur in life occur that are identified immediately as the most opportune or the most convenient. Never are these events as regrettable as instances of passion and love made impossible by external circumstances. "Living for the moment" may be an optimal strategy for approaching many things in life but does not always prove to be the best strategy in matters of love. Sometimes what you see before your eyes can be deceiving and what separates mature affections from those of young lovers is the foresight and the maturity to identify the amorous encounter for what it is while the moment is occurring. Not everything before us is real. Impossible love is simply that...impossible. It exists in the dark and is suppressed by the time dawn breaks and the sun rises. Our affections lie; our eyes beguile; our heart misleads. For this lesson I am indebted to a 6 hour love replayed nightly on the backs of my eyelids, in a my single-seat private theatre.

"Like all dreamers I confuse disenchantment with truth"

~Jean-Paul Sartre

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

two suns in the sunset...

Happy New Year… cheers to all the wishful prospects of 2009!

After gallivanting about the city streets for several hours, and subsequently enjoying the very low-key evening that came perfectly equipped with an intimate dinner party amongst loved ones… the only things on the agenda for the novel day, thus far, have been much needed leisure and the kind of workload that requires very minimal commotion. But like any other year, there’s still plenty on the vanguard. And though the holiday season is winding down, I can only hope the New Year ahead brings dreams to reality, prosperity, and infinite happiness. And some reasonably priced paintings for yourself truly. Cheers!

"Good resolutions are simply checks that men draw on a bank where they have no account"

~Oscar Wilde

Sunday, January 04, 2009

holidays hell days...

This holiday season was exceptionally moribund this year out here in New York City with empty stores throughout the months including the weekends immediately before Christmas. While this is not surprisingly considering the current economic conditions in this country, what is amazing is that so much of the world's economy is dependent upon these end-of-the-year sales. It seems rather counter intuitive that American people (who overall have a negative savings rate) would open up their wallets when so many companies are laying off their employees, home values (that used to provide liquidity and capital) have plunged and the overall economy is in flux.

Providing companies with federal monies to remain solvent may help the employment rate but companies that continue to innovate and develop new technologies and products will still be exposed to declining sales activities in the market. Wisely, the personal savings rate climbed in November but putting aside more money in savings leaves less for splurging at the mall and retail outlets. The economy depends on people not saving and continuing to consume. The problem is not about "restoring confidence in the buying climate" but people coming to the realization that for years people have spent way more than they have earned on worthless commodities and that 20 percent compound interest on credit card debt does add up. Perhaps a change in buying behavior will lead to further financial turmoil, but perhaps this system of economic functioning needs to change.

"Les bourgeois c'est comme les cochons, Plus ça devient vieux plus ça devient bête" (The Bourgeois are like the pigs, the older they get, the stupider they become)

~Jacques Brel