Tuesday, June 29

Do You Know When It's Done?

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Gotta' admit that I always envied the guys in my high school class who knew what they wanted to be when they grew up. You'll remember the ones who were going to be doctors, lawyers, painters, engineer... like that. Frankly there was no one back then who said, "When I grow up, I'm going to be an economist and edit business magazines, and write." Nope, nobody. So I've had to figure it out, and well, I'm still not certain what, when I grow up, I'm going to be.

Maybe that's why I've got a problem as an artist in deciding when an image is done. I mean, when it's grown up and become what it should be...could be... will be....

Take Deadfinger here. I knew the title when I used my G10 to capture this thing poking way up into the clouds. And I knew that it spoke to me about tickling the heavens, and filling upper spaces, and attracting attention to itself from the crowds all around Madison Square Garden. And there was something about hubris too in the moment, along with ambition, and daring. And of course, something about the ambition of New York in the early parts of the last century. All that was there.But...as the feelings emerged on my palette...COMMUNICATE.... But... but...

The thing is that there are so many ways to say something. And so many things that something can say. And... and... How to know when that something's sufficiently mature and full-bodied and... and... CLEAR?

Yeah... all art comes swathed in ambiguity... but every artist has something which s/he hopes that the visitor will experience. And since all artists are control freaks (it's part of the job description... go look), then we need to dissipate some of the ambiguity... to poke some holes into it so that it will Hisssssssss away leaving shapes, forms, textures, and palettes (just about all we have to compose with) that communicate.

How do we know we've done that? How do we know that we've moved a feeling efficiently enough to move the viewer toward our feeling? Resonated it authentically? How... How... HOW???

See... see how Darkfinger morphed from that first image to this second one? And can you imagine the steps between? And the ones still to come? And if you do imagine them... is that alone what I needed to do? Cause you to wonder? For, art without wonder is... is... merely craft. Right?

Saturday, June 19


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Fashion’s like politics: Their objectives are similar and so are their abuses.


NYNY: Canon G10. Two hats and a head.

So what's going on here? First off the G10's going out with me a lot more than my new 7D. Yep, the camera you've got is the best one possible, right?

Anywayzzzzz.... The idea of shop windows is so URBAN. On a rural winding road or majestic natural vista... well you just don't whap into store front filled up in ways meant to grab your feelings. The tug at my feelings and make me want to tease out their poetry.

And I've done it here first with the vacuum lens on my G10, then with square cropping the details which I hen used Topaz and Alien Skin's SnapArt2 to brush away anything but mood. There's an attitude along the streets of New York and a part of it, like the back melody of a fugue comes from the shops.

Here's one three note chord that I really enjoyed.

Tuesday, June 15


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Imagination opens a big door
And shows us what's


Canon G10
PS4/Topaz/AlienSkin-SnapArt2-Oil/Custom Brushes


Monday, June 14

Summer Drummer

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Summer in the city... THE BIG CITY! It's a Tuesday during business hours. Central Park's an office... a BIG OFFICE. And it's close to millions of customers. Just a phone call away. If you're good on the phone, Central Park's a good place to work. Especially if your shoes are shined laser bright.

Used my Canon G10 last week. It's small, inconspicuous, and quiet. Good thing, since I'm none of those things.

Sunday, June 13

1Mpxl Phone Cheepo Again

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Another from Friday night. I'm thinking that a lot of folks have gone out and bought Hulga cameras. Those are plastic film cameras that look like 1950s Kodak snapshot boxes.They're so shoddily made that light leaks onto the film and the crappy plastic lenses have all sorts of imperfections so that the final images seem like spiritual vomit. People look at the results and go, "Heavy Man! Soooooo DEEEEEP!" And I try not to put my finger down throat.... GAG!

They also expect that the point and clicker (as opposed to a photographer) will go through the hassle of sending 12 shot film rolls off to a lab somewhere and wait for "instant gratification" when the prints arrive a week or so later.

BUT why go Hulga when most of you, like me, are carting around 1mpxl cameras in our cellphones that come equipped with super crappy plastic lenses? And of course we've smeared those openings with all sorts of finger grease each time we use the phones. Nothing like random grease on plastic to smear highlights delightfully into shadows. And the result?




Like yesterday's post the image was captured just after the sun set through my Verizon LG. Question... why have I spent bundle on cameras and glass when all the while I was carting around this portal into the mystical world? It's a puzzlement don't you think.

Anybody want me to do a cellphone wedding shoot? I shall charge TOP PRICE for my ethereal interpretation.

Take note Andreas Manessinger :-)

Saturday, June 12

The Best Camera In The World

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The best camera, they say, is the one that you have with you.

My cellphone is Verizon's cheapest, clamshell thing. It has a 1Mpx camera and a plastic lens. But it's usually in my pocket. Have you ever heard them tell, "It's not the arrow, it's the indian."? Last night I only had my cheepo cell phone with me as the sun set.

Thursday, June 10

Box PIle

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Jay Maissel - "Black and white is an inside joke with no reference to reality. Color approximates reality, gets more of the feeling of what's there."

Arthur Miller - "Create the poem from the evidence."


New York, New York
Canon G10
PS4 & Topaz & touches of Alien Skin Snap Art 2: Oil Paint

Tuesday, June 8

Then Constantine Went North

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What we leave out is as important... Maybe more.

Which is about art...
And life.


Canon G10
AlienSkin Bokeh

Monday, June 7

NYC Chic

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So I'm thinking something like this..... Wuddaya think?

Or howzabout ...

Saturday, June 5


Perkins, Cash, Elvis, & Jerry Lee

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Tuesday was our 42nd anniversary. I took Rita to NYC to see The MillionDollar Quartet. It's the romanticized story of the legendary 1956 reunion night in Sam Phillip's Sun Records. Apparently it really happened and the tape's finally been made into an album of Elvis, Johnny Cash, Carl Perkins, and Jerry Lee Lewis jamming in front of the live mics. The story goes that it was the evening when Cash and Perkins told Phillips they were not going to renew their contracts.

The story's a thin reed to showcase actually five featured musicians and two backup players. How good is it? They made Rita scream when they whipped the audience into leaping frenzy. This is Broadway where America's very best theatrical talent work. If these people want to ignite a frenzy over a floor sweep... that audience will frenzy.

The five principals: Levi Kreis (Jerry Lee), Robert Britton Lyons (Carl Perkins), Lance Guest (Johnny Cash), Elizabeth Stanley (a fictional PC correct female edition) - and to a lesser extent Eddie Clendening (Elvis) are more electric than their amplifiers. Imagine the best concert you've seen - but stage it by top broadway directors, producers, lighters, sound engineers, and designers. Put it into a relatively small theater where every sight line is perfect... And you will get a sense of this thing.

Some months ago we enjoyed Jersey Boys on Broadway. This is its equal. It does not matter whether you like or hate rock-a-billy music. The theatricality of all of this is designed to slam you breathless. In fact, the last quarter of the show happens as a reprise. At a certain point, they drop all pretense of a drama, turn the stage into a concert hall, face the audience, and crank up the energy level to 11.

It is full frontal Broadway. BTW, the audience seemed to be wildly intergenerational. We were not the oldest couple and way far from the youngest. Its worth a trip to NYC. And, oh yeah. I booked the entire trip (except for Amtrak) through Broadway.com. We stayed at the Times Square Hilton, ate at Maison, and got center section, second row mezzanine seats (my favorite place to watch) from the company which I've used before and will exclusively use again.

It was a wonderful anniversary. Don't wait for your 42nd... call Broadway.com now (an unpaid testimonial). :-)

Friday, June 4

Big Month Repaired - Yea!

I'm working on it. See the "Rotten Apple link over there on the right column? It explains what I'm up to. Trying to overcome the huge loss that Apple caused and what I've done now is reconstruct the first month that first attracted tens of thousands of visitors here to ImageFiction. Click here for a trip through August of '08. And let me know if the images still hold up? Okay?

Oh yeah... and enjoy... enjoy... enjoy...

We've Been Walloped!

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Watched the vital signs today. Saw the world's financial markets wobbling. Watched the Euro's value reflect the astonishing amount of sovereign debt that EU countries will have to refinance over the next three months (who's left to buy?). Winced when the May US employment figures came in at disastrous levels and the unemployment rates declined only because large lumps of the American workers became so discouraged that they abandoned seeking work. Yeah, the way BP keeps pissing into the Gulf, and how Obama's "taking charge" by talking tough about that company's advertising and dividend payments - tough about things that will do nothing about the gunk vomiting up under the sea. Yeah, that's melancholic static.

But this is small stuff. The reeeely scary news came earlier in the week and the word's only just digesting the kernel of universal instability it revealed. Forget the trembling Middle East, pirates off of Africa, or the sabers rattling in Iran and North Korea. No... no... ultimately the most unsettling announcement... The one that makes us wonder if we can believe in any human decision... That news hit us with real wallop when we learned of the breakup between Al and Tipper.

Is there nothing solid left? Is it all dissolving?

Thursday, June 3