Some of My Recent Poetry and Artwork

 Signs

I don’t know him very well:

I know he’s read Kafka and Marx.

 

I don’t know him very well;

I know he is a bit younger than me

And much quieter.

 

I don’t know him very well;

I know he is passionate

About music

And talented.

 

I don’t know him very well;

I know he kisses gently

As though awaiting a further invitation.

The kind of polite kiss that says

He is cautious.

 

I hardly know him at all!

Bad girl that I am,

I ruin everything

With my impulsive heart

Given thoughtlessly

To a near stranger.

 

I hardly knew him but I noticed

He was lonely when I was too,

Noticed that

He was handsome in his own way

Both of us uniquely marked,

Complimentary.

He seemed, in his reticence, to say everything.

 

I didn’t know him very well;

And In my ignorant bliss assumed that this was all

A sort of sign.

But I guess we failed to align

Because soon after that time

He disappeared.

 

Signs are funny like that,

An illusion of time and events

That gives one a sense of deeper meaning,

Always fleeting

As perspectives change…

 

Signs are funny like that,

Showing up in so many faces,

Or a peculiar set of scenery

An inkling of

Significance to be pondered.

 

I don’t know if

This was a sign or a waste of time,

But it’s igniting sparks of recognition within me

Like fireworks.

 

I don’t know if

I should feel sad

But I do feel glad.

 

I don’t need to know him

To feel gratitude for what he meant in my life.

 

Signs of growth.

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Final Draft: Don’t Come Home

Here’s my final video project this semester.

It’s by no means perfects, but I’m proud of my accomplishment.

I don’t know where this came from, I opened my mind to creativity and now it has manifested. I don’t even like horror very much, usually I get too scared, but as I thought of what viable set and props I had it became apparent that would be the most successful route to take. I created this as campy B horror film.
My main influences were: Kill List, Maniac

I also took some influence from the music of Marilyn Manson, and Rasputina.

feel free to comment.

La Vie Quotidienne du Chatte

EDITED: this is the final version.

My main sources of cinematic inspiration when creating this piece were Stoker, and Amelie. I love the whimsical/dramatic style of narration in those movies. I really enjoyed adding the narration and subtitles, it was like a project within a project (projectception? too far?).  I wasn’t quite prepared for the nostalgia this project awoke in me. Speaking French is something I rarely get to do, it’s a little known fact that I studied it my entire school-age life. Something about experiencing the language opens a sort of portal back to those childhood feelings. My cat knows all about it: she was there, never wavering in her daily activities.

Coatie Pop: Gangsta Rap Queen

So this video was made by my friend Lil’ Coatie over at Hardcore Anarchy as a parody of Lil Wyte’s Oxy Cotton. She first showed me this rap around new years. We were all chilling with some friends’ over at their house, talking about our hopes and various artistic endeavors. Around one in the morning, with a half smoked Bronson in one hand and a smartphone in the other, she played the track and showed us this fantastic parody. I’ve been looking forward to the video ever since. Drawing on her talented circle of friends, they designed and produced this over the past couple months, finally releasing it earlier this week.

Already she has been shared by Lil Wyte on Twitter!

What remains to be seen: will it go viral?

Video Project and Reflection

Making this video, I took inspiration from a very specific dream sequence. Here in the final piece I can only see a faint glimmer of the original plan. Seeing that seed glimmering in the heart of the final product made me recall the old saying: There’s a grain of truth in every lie. Picasso himself famously said,

“We all know that Art is not truth. Art is a lie that makes us realize truth at least the truth that is given us to understand. The artist must know the manner whereby to convince others of the truthfulness of his lies.”

I’m not saying there is a universal truth in this video, but there is an individual truth. The truth of my emotion and my dream experience, and I think I captured/communicated that well. I made it with the intention of stirring the imagination. I made it with the intention of questioning the superficial, and in an effort provoke deeper thought in my audience. I make all my art with these intentions. I hope to create visually fascinating things that connect and communicate with others.
I hope to convince people that my art holds truth.

I give you my final video project: (recut)

 

I thought I was done posting, and then I found this…

Wow. If this doesn’t make you think and feel, then you might be dead. Just one of many strange and wonderful video remixes by Cyriak. I don’t have time to reflect much on this now, but I don’t really think it needs my commentary. It’s pretty outstanding.

Project in Progress: Video Remix Project Update

A couple sessions of gathering and converting YouTube clips, and a few hours of editing and I have the base of what I’m working on: I’m pleased to report the initial work for the video project is done!

I’ve talked about it before, but I’m still fascinated by the evolution a piece of art goes through during it’s creation. I included in my proposal, an in depth description of a dream I’m trying to capture in remix video. This is to serve as a general guide and a point of reference, not a serious script. It’s a jumping place, and something to look back at when the piece is done, so I can document more clearly the overall process.

I am really enjoying using video because I find it so easily manipulate. It makes good sense to me, scrolling, cutting, pasting, matching like pieces together, transitioning. I plan on using video layering techniques in this project to help achieve the ethereal/emotional quality of a dream, and also because I love it (if you saw my GIFs then you already know!).

The biggest challenge was how to recombine all my clipped footage. I have so many tiny segments, and several longer sections yet to be overlapped to help provide continuity within the piece (with almost 20 source videos, I need some continuous elements for blending). I’m learning a lot about adding effects, as I tweak each little piece to match and fit with the next. At the end I plan on adding a single effect over the whole piece to assist with the overall feel of the work.

 

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Original Artwork

I am trying to break it down into manageable deadlines (draft finished tomorrow, polished by next tuesday) based on class expectation, and also so I don’t lose sight of the other work I have to finish.

I experience this anxious eagerness whenever I work on a piece, I can’t work on it enough. I can’t finish it soon enough. It’s not that I don’t like the process, but that I love it so much I want to completely submerge myself in it. I want to follow my muse/interest fully and completely, without distraction. I often think if school was set up in a fashion where I took one intensive course at a time, that I would be much more successful at it. I comprehend best when I submerge myself completely. Scientifically the human mind is not capable of multitasking, though we often try. The mind works best when focused on one thing at a time. It only seems obvious that education should follow.

Video Remix [3 of 3]

This last post about video remix, I’d like to devote some time to really look at internet gag youtube videos. These are meme based mashup clips intended to be humorous.

This first one is the more prevalent kind of internet video. It takes a base video, in this case a young girl talking about haters and sitting in her mom’s car, and crudely overlays text, and animated images. Spinning bags of Doritos and Mountain Dew, Sanic the Hegehog (also Gotta Go Fast), it also references the eye of providence symbol commonly associated with the Illuminati. For a grand slam finish, add a couple explosions, the x-file’s theme, and the grand finale is a cut to the iconic ending of Thelma and Louise. This video is packed with referenced found in the internet culture of forums such as Reddit, 9gag, 4chan, etc, all meant to be funny.

Possibly my favorite kind of gag video, the cheaply made conspiracy tape. It opens with text over-layed on a dollar bill, specifically the masonic pyramid. From there it spasmodically runs through some clips with Illuminati all-seeing eyes on the faces and miraculously found in a series of images. In the back ground the X-file’s theme plays as they make “stunning revelations” about where Illuminati symbolism is hidden. It steals clips and images from several children’s shows including the Teletubbies, Spongebob, Dragon Tales, and Aurthur. Other meme references include ‘Ayy Lmao,’ and Snoop Dogg, Breaking Bad, Susan Boyle, and an old gag car ad (which makes up the final proof). It serves to mock conspiracy theorists who seem to always be able to break down pop culture to it’s Illuminati inspiration (or the video embedded on this page, wowie!).

Video Remix [2 of 3]

One can hardly think of the word remix without thinking about hip hop, therefore it only seems right to feature some hip hop remix videos.

The opening sample “Drop” from which the song takes it’s name, comes from an earlier Beastie Boys track, The New Style. Directed by Spike Jonze It was preformed backwards (they literally worked with linguists to learn to mouth it backwards perfectly) then played backwards. The overall piece conveys a sense of surreality, as you begin to understand the perspective of the video.

A relatively recent player in the mainstream hip hop scene, Iggy Azalea’s music video Black Widow clearly draws upon remix of certain pop culture references. Around one minute into the video she channels her inner femme fatale, in an obvious copy of Tarintino’s Kill Bill (2003). It also clearly draws some strong influences from Destiny’s Child’s Independent Women music video (2000). In my opinion it also references the 2011 blockbuster Suckerpunch. The action story is framed by a rather bleak portrayal of the main character’s reality, and she imagines liberating herself through a fantastic imaginary battle.

Reflection: Art as a Way of Life

It’s a bit surreal to be blogging on the regular now. I’ve always thought it would be an interesting project to take on, but any number of excuses have stopped me from getting started on it before now. I’ve been busy working, busy with classes, busy making art, busy seeing friends, busy partying like it’s 1999 all over again, I had no internet access, no computer, no time… The real reason under all of that is lack of initiative, and a high level of uncertainty. Who is my audience? What makes me so interesting that anyone would want to read my blog? What even should I blog about? Excuse the phrasing, but I didn’t have my shit together.

GIF from Juxtapoz

or maybe I was partying like it’s 1499?

When I look back at the last three years or so, I am a different person. Not different really, but I was such a child. Always sticking my foot in my mouth (I don’t promise that I’ve outgrown that just yet), I was blind and aimless. I had no goals, no dreams beyond a longing for independence.

I try to look back often enough, so I can see how I’ve grown and improved, to ensure I keep growing and keep improving. It was a rocky path, it still is. But I stuck by the things I love, most of all my artistic outlets. I owe much of my personal evolution to it. There’s this idea among non-creating people, I hear it often when they talk about art. There’s the myth that art is all pencils to paper, brush to canvas. Like Genesis, the art just rushes forth, in all it’s complete detail, out of the void. Would that it were so simple!

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Art comes from love, pain, passion and fire. It comes from solitude and collaboration, from contemplation and from impulse. It’s a refuge within myself, where I go to celebrate my humanity. I think the thing I love most about it is that a piece of art is more than the sum of it’s elements. It’s never just a pencil, just paper, just a brush, a canvas, pastel, more than clay, more than glass, more than oil or acrylic. Art means something, even when it means nothing at all.