[Most Recent Entries]
Below are the 14 most recent journal entries recorded in
|Wednesday, December 31st, 2014|
The year 2014 has been a rather interesting one for me.
I have become engaged to a wonderful lady named Virginia, and we are planning to get married sometime near the summer solstice (June 21, 2015.) We will be sending out invitations when we have more details.
We have been doing a bit of camping. We started out camping in tents at Hermosillo, Mexico for a Spirit Dance. Then upgraded to a rented, twenty five old Volkswagen Westfalia van to celebrate the rites of spring at Wolf Creek, Oregon. This proved to be a little underpowered for driving in the mountains and a little cramped logistically, so we purchased a Lance camper RV for going to Burning Man. Burning man was a hoot, as always, only this time we had an engagement party dancing to 60’s rock on board a double decker art car that cruised around the playa. We went out in the camper again for a memorial ceremony in Kansas.
We have also made some trips to Maui. Virginia had never seen Hawaii before, but now this is high on our list for a honeymoon. We also made a visit to Kentucky to show Virginia to the folks. This was during the NCAA playoffs, where she yelled and screamed at the TV during the game. She fit right in with my relatives, where Kentucky basketball is a form of participant religion. We spent Thanksgiving and Christmas with her family in Sparks, Nevada, where we had some lovely times, lovely meals, and they seem a bit surprised at her new found enthusiasm for basketball.
We have also made journeys to the Maya country in Yucatan, Mexico. I loved the ancient pyramids there, and am working on a book of infrared photographs.
Henderson Nevada is still my home base. Las Vegas is a hub, I had a couple drive in from LA for a Vegas wedding. We have had a dozen people staying over for a trade show, then over sixty people show up for our Summer Event in July. Our wedding will be the Summer Event for next year. It is astounding how complicated weddings can be.
A few weeks ago, I finally got my old property in Henderson on the market. But this does not mean that I am shrinking my real estate holdings. I have purchased four acres in Santa Elena, Mexico with a cottage, a tropical forest, a small cave, and an archaeological sire.
I have still been attending some Science Fiction & Fantasy conventions. I was at Baycon is Santa Clara, California; Biggest Little Furcon in Reno, Nevada; the Worldcon in London, England; and Smofcon in Manhattan Beach, California.
I have started a new business, Mystic Madness, Myth & Media. I have really enjoyed directing videos, but the administrative stuff was beginning to overpower me, so I will be hiring a full time administrator starting in January of 2015.
So, 2014 has been a good year. I am still alive, I have found unexpected love, and I am keeping myself busy.
|Sunday, July 19th, 2009|
|My Anticipation Schecule
My schedule for the Worldcon:
Title: First Contact: What will the Neighbors Think?
Description: We will examine perceptions and preconceptions. What would
aliens think about our planet, our society, and our lives?
I assume that I am on this panel, because I can think like an alien. Maybe all of my thinking of humans as an alien species will pay off.
Title: Photography and the Genre
For years I have been trying to convince them that my work really is science fictional.
Title: Why I Fan: 10 Minute Talks
Description: What keeps fans in our fandom? Fans each in 10 minutes
explain the importance of fandom in their lives. Most members of
fandom spend a few years in fandom, then they move on. But fandom
remains shiny for some fans. Five fans, five different reasons?
This, I think is a rather curious panel. Perhaps we are the slow learners group. I am not sure who the audience is for this presentation.
|Saturday, June 13th, 2009|
|San Francisco Museum of Modern Art
I just saw the Ansel Adams & Georgia O’Keeffe exhibit at SFMOMA. I admire both artists, but the show was a poor curatorial choice. Ansel Adams would have hated it. He preferred to have his photographs shown against dark walls, to give better luminosity to the prints. The walls here were stark white.
Adams’ work was small (they featured none of his larger works), detailed, and black & white. O’Keeffe’s work was larger, soft, and vibrantly colored. There was only one set of images that worked well together. He has a photograph and she has a watercolor of the same church in Taos, New Mexico. (Interestingly enough, these two images were chosen for the cover of the show catalog.) If you looked at the rest of the artworks together, Adams’ work looked a bit too dark and O’Keeffe’s looked a bit too flashy. I had to go through the show twice; ignoring Adams’ work on the first pass and ignoring O’Keeffe’s on the second. They were friends in real life, but so were Picasso and Gertrude Stein. Excellent work, but commingling them was a curatorial failure.
On the other hand seeing the work prints and contact sheets for Robert Frank’s “The Americans” was a wonderful treat.
|Tuesday, March 25th, 2008|
|Monday, May 21st, 2007|
I am in Chicago attending a conference for museum professionals. As a museum board member I am soaking up as much knowledge as I can from the sessions.
I am also here on a personal quest. This is a town I lived in 35 years ago in my young anarchist days. I am not sure if my old hippie radical self would comprehend the grayer, less energetic, more “respectable” self I have become.
The ubiquitous rusty El tracks overhead seem eternal, but the houses I lived in have been torn down to make way for high rises.
The Field Museum was instrumental in my love of anthropology. I come early and have the Pacific wing to myself. The exhibits and artifacts still hold a magic for me. The tikis, and weapons, and bare breasted women still play a part in my art and world view. They are a wonderful confirmation of the ancient human psyche. By ten AM, the hoards of tiny school kids stream through the museum. This disrupts my sanctuary, but I am all in favor of infesting the young ones with culture. Who knows, perhaps some of it will stick.
In the Chicago Art Institute, the El Greco images still hold power and show the magic of art. Again this is a sanctuary. I am always surprised that 1) these artworks still exist, 2) that anyone is free to come up and admire the originals first hand, and 3) that there not throngs of people packing the place.
And then there was the Freedom Museum, a museum that focuses on the questions of freedom, and just how far our government is willing to squash it. The museum is only a year old, but it was built on a site two blocks away from where decades ago, I stood on the street corner and exhorted the passing pedestrians about the virtues of not trusting the government. Perhaps the museum will be more effective.
These have reaffirmed my faith in museums as a repository of culture. The forward progression through time is always a mixed transition of stability and divergence, progress and degeneration. It is good to have a reference collection of the best and the worst from the past to give us some perspective on the present.
|Wednesday, August 31st, 2005|
I doubt if many states have such a long and lonely road
as the major thoroughfare between their two largest cities.
I traverse the north and south of the state,
though counties as big as some Eastern states and a total population
of less than 2000.
This year I have come in a RV
as opposed to my previous stint as a car camper.
It eats a lot more gas
and is much more clunkier to drive,
but it is nice to not have to sleep wedged in between my water and gear.
Refrigerator, electric power, shower, and private toilet
also make life a little easier.
Ah First World creature comforts.
Last night I camped out at a shoe tree,
a tree with over a hundred pairs of shoes tossed into its branches.
The wind and elements have caused some to fall to the ground,
completing the illusion of shoe fruits.
The night itself was as dark and deep as only
a clear desert night can be.
As I see other vehicles laden with bicycles and strange supplies.
I feel a kinship with them,
as fellow pilgrims heading to the shrine.
There was almost no wait to enter the event,
but there is the familiar dust, dust everywhere.
And artists frantically finishing up their projects.
I sign up as press,
but last year I found the light much to harsh
for the soft work that I like to do.
Still there is much to see
Women wearing nothing but skirts.
Men wearing nothing but skirts.
There is no phone service here,
but I do have WiFi. (sometimes)
It is nice to be in touch,
but I feel it is somehow cheating the experience,
sort of like bringing your ipod on a silent retreat.
Then there is the night.
The Burning Man style is to move about dimly,
but festively lit
with a light stick tube about your neck
or perhaps a flashing key chain on your jacket.
That can work well under a full moon,
but this is a moonless desert night.
I have an effective headband light
that makes me feel luminously overdressed.
I seek out one of my favorite art forms,
nude fire dancing.
None yet, but the week is young.
|Friday, December 3rd, 2004|
|Thursday, February 5th, 2004|
|But is she Catholic?
I recently received a posting from a web directory
wanting to add my web site to a religion/christianity/catholic link.
While I consider my work to be spiritual,
I have never really bought into the original sin concept.
I think I should tell them to hold off until I add my nude & serpent pictures
in my next web revision.
|Monday, March 31st, 2003|
|discovery of electricity
I had wondered for some time
about the continued popularity of my image “Discovery of Electricity”.
It is a nice image in my “History of the World” series,
but it seemed to be inproportionally popular
is comparison with others in the series.
I get a thousand more visitors a year on this page.
Then it dawned on me,
(some of us have a hard time seeing the obvious)
that the people clicking on this site
were not looking for art,
they were looking for help with their term papers.
This page shows up in the top five in search engines
if you look for “discovery of electricity”.
This explains why so many found the page,
but did not stay for long.
(Of course those scholars searching on censoring software,
could not log in at all,
as our youth must be protected from nudity in all its forms.)
The image was on a picture only page,
after all, the main function of my web page is to show case my art.
I have now decided to add text to the page,
it being my job to lure students away from their assignments
and to provide an alternative view of the world we live in.
I consider it my solemn duty to add to the disinformation on the net.
It is a thankless job,
but somebody has to do it.
|Saturday, November 16th, 2002|
|Volcano, HI (part ii)
It has been said
that where other cultures would put a temple,
Americans create an National Park.
This is surely true to the Volcanos National Park in Hawaii.
Yesterday I spoke with awe about recent lava,
something done in my lifetime,
or in the last ten years.
I was mistaken.
There is nothing quite as magnificent as lava occurring before your very eyes.
You feel that you are witnessing an act of creation itself.
the best views are at night,
and here you are joined by throngs of flashlight bearing pilgrims,
trekking over the lava fields to witness the event.
Perhaps you can see more drama on videos,
but here you feel that you are taking part in some quiet ritual of observance.
A demonstration of power, destruction, and renewal.
|Friday, November 15th, 2002|
My room tonight is at the edge of a volcanic caldera.
People used to stare out at a vast lake of lava,
now you can only see steam vents and a very big hole.
Still the view is impressive,
and wandering about in the dark would not bode well.
I have been out photographing today,
revisiting the City of Refuge,
this is one of my favorite photographic haunts.
This one of the few vistas that I return to that does not involve
people without their clothes.
(We all follow our own muses).
Perhaps I am getting back to my beginnings as a formalist photographer.
I am also fascinated by the ropy, flowing pahoehoe lava,
as opposed to the chunky, aa lava.
The terms may sound strange,
but each aspect of live has its own vocabulary.
Aa, I understand, is a favorite word among scrabble players,
who have a fondness for words that only have two letters.
(I love language, but I have never quite understood scrabble players,
who seem totally unconcerned with a word’s meaning,
only that it is spelled correctly.)
I have been shooting with infrared film,
a sensitive substance that should never be X-rayed nor opened
in any environment other than total darkness.
Airline security is philosophically opposed to the existence of such a product.
And one can only find such film in specialized camera supply stores.
So one must make compromises,,
I let them have a brief peek and hope that only the first few frames are wasted.
I then need to take pictures of light that I can not see,
at exposures calibrated for a different source of light.
When it works it is wonderful.
There is something majestic and magic about volcanos.
I have lived near them in Oregon and on them in Maui and New Zealand.
But when they are covered with structures and lush greenery,
they have a certain Permanence about them.
There is nothing like recent lava
to show you that they are far from permanent.
The whole context of seeking to “preserve nature”
seems a bit absurd, when nature itself is busy covering things with rock,
rock that will eventually slide into the sea.
The scientists say that in 40 million years the current islands of Hawaii
will be pushed under Japan.
Tora Tora Tora, indeed.
|Sunday, October 27th, 2002|
I have returned from the Open Studios at the
Hunter’s Point Shipyard in San Francisco.
Now at my own Open Studios I only get small crowds,
as I am a solo artist working not particularly close to other artists
in an area where parking can be tricky.
But at Hunter’s Point there are over 150 artists
and many thousands of visitors who treat the complex
as a large art fair.
The visitors who come to my studio do so because they are interested in my work.
They know it from what they have seen in the past,
or they have seen a postcard or an image in the catalog.
At Hunter’s Point, they come to graze
and poke their heads into as many studios as they can
until they are overwhelmed.
for me, the overwhelming happened rather quickly,
but I forced myself to try and see it all.
Suffering, as you know, for art’s sake.
Artists are creative people
and tap into the creative energies.
Here it is like a vast multi-god Hindu temple
or a speaker’s corner with over a hundred podiums
with fervent advocates pleading their cause.
Museum shows and galleries often tell us more about the curator
than they do the artists.
Works are chosen for a particular theme or because they work well together.
But at the open studios the artists are free to
show the breadth of their creative endeavours,
so the chambers, hallways, and courtyards abound with material.
Is the artwork good? yes.
Is it bad? certainly.
It is bright, dull, original, derivative, fervent, playful,
but in the end just overwhelming.
It is my theory that each piece of successful art
should be able to lift the viewer into a state of consciousness.
it can be comfortable or disturbing, familiar or strange.
One ends up feeling jet-laged, overstimulated, and unsure of one’s judgment.
I took some artist’s cards.
Perhaps I will get back to them.
But later. I need time to recover.
|Saturday, October 5th, 2002|
Today is my open studios
After sending out a thousand postcards
and weeks of printing and planing
I open the doors to greet guests with
questionable wine, excellent cheese, and my newest art.
I am very excited about my mud women series.
But is the world ready for it?
Times of waiting,
time of frenzy,
meeting new admirers,
and the meandering strangers of the San Francisco art aficionados.
Much of the time
I just want to create.
To make art, follow my muse, and get lost in the wonders and passions of creativity,
but art demands an audience.
So I play host,
with my blood, sweat and madness tidily formatted and hung on the wall.
|Wednesday, October 2nd, 2002|
|thanks for modeling requests
I want to thank all of you who have asked me about modeling.
I am rather overextended, but I love working with new models,
making new friends, having new experiences, and making new art.
I home base in Maui and the San Francisco Bay area,
and most of my work is done in these locations.
If you live in Florida or Baltimore,
I love hearing from you, but unless you are willing to travel,
there is not much chance of our getting together,
But drop me a line, you never know.
If you are a professional model,
please look over my work and see if you can adapt it to your style.
I am not looking for glamor poses or classical figure poses,
I am looking for actresses who can role play,
and for people who can have fun in front of the camera.
On the other hand if this is a new decision for you,
and this is your first time posing nude or modeling at all,
I think that you are in for a wonderful experience.
The decision to pose is not one that everyone can make,
it is a special affirmation that says, “I accept my body.”
Most of us have be conditioned to believe that our body
is imperfect and unbeautiful.
Learning to accept your own personal beauty is the first part of the process,
finding someone to help capture it as an image is the next.
The images are in truth,
a collaboration between the photographer and the model.
Few moments are more satisfying than when both can say to each other,
“Wow, you make me look good.”