… on… Cy Twombly….

One of my favorite abstract artists is Cy Twombly – especially his “scratch” or “scribble” works, like the “Blackboard Series” with the notions of automatic writing, action, movement, simplicity, emotion and passion and how these all work together as a joyous expression of life and identity.

Where I found this artwork: Last Summer I decided to visit the Cleveland Zoo.  I was hoping to get some nice pictures of animals but just like me trying to photograph people – my camera just said “no” to animals (mostly because the animals looked bored, unhappy or sickly – so JUST SAY NO to ZOOS! There has to be a better way to learn about exotic animals).  Okay so enough about my newly developed political viewpoint toward zoos.

Now, onto the main topic of this post.  I did find a couple of other cool things on the zoo grounds.   One thing was this blackboard outside the Ape Exhibit where visitors (animal or human) could take a piece of chalk and write, draw or mark up what ever they felt like.

Ode 2 Cy Twombly

ODE 2 CY TWOMBLY 1

Ode 2 Cy Twombly 2

ODE 2 CY TWOMBLY 2

I like both presentations of this work and even if they are the exact image the processing completely changes it and I think they are very complimentary side by side and in the spirit of Cy Twombly’s work  – which is why I titled them “ODE TO CY TWOMBLY”.  I hope you enjoy.

For the music part of this post I decided to include one of my new finds that I dearly enjoy.  The composer is Canadian born Mark Templeton.  He composes experimental/abstract/noise/glitchy/ambient music.  I hope you like this selection, “Pattern For A Pillow” which is from his 2007 recording STANDING ON A HUMMINGBIRD.

For more on Mark Templeton you can check out his website at http://www.fieldsawake.com

… on color or b&w….

Some people prefer color and others prefer b&w.

In an image saturated society which has more impact and why?
Of course there are several considerations to make before answering such a question.

“image saturated society” ~
What does that mean?
How does it shape our perceptions and tastes?
How does it determine our escalating sense of reality?
How does it change how we process/create the images we see?
Where is the “truth” in an image? – What is “true” in an image?

reeds-and-ropes-bw

reeds-and-ropes

… on “thin ice”…

As many of you know visually, I “see” in abstract.   It’s just the way my mind works.  Some people see gorgeous sweeping mind altering landscapes but I like to get to the “nitty-gritty” of things.   Looking at the common in a way that makes people stop, question, and consider what they are looking at and how they feel about it.

Abstraction is often confused with surrealism but it is not the same thing.  Surrealism, in my opinion has more to do with pictorialism.  Surrealism shows easily recognizable things in fantastical setting[s] setting up uncommon and at times illogical relationships.  Abstraction on the other hand tends to zoom in on details to the point that the viewer is not sure what they are looking at.  It purposefully alters either in presentation, or creative manipulates the subject to the point of no return focusing on shapes, lines, patterns and spaces which results in more of an emotional/psychological connection for the viewer.  Even if the viewer dismisses the work as balderdash, crap, f’d up, worthless, pointless, etc,  they still have had an emotional response to the work.

The two series I am posting today are examples of my abstract way of seeing nature.  This latest project focuses on images from a frozen lake.  This first series involves subtle manipulation of the image by increasing contrast, desaturating color etc.  It consists of 6 images simply titled Lake Ice #1 – #6.

The second series is the result of trying to figure out what to do with the “bad photos” from that frozen adventure.  I always try to salvage my so-called bad images.  And that salvage process usually involves manipulating them to the point of oblivion.  This series is titled LAKE ICE EXTREME #1-#9 and tells us some valuable things.

  1. There are more “bad” photos than good ones (that’s why there’s 9 in this series and only 6 in the previous series.)

  2. The acronym for this series is L.I.E.  which basically says that what you are looking at is a lie of the mind caused by extreme manipulation of crop, color and exposure.

  3. While you may not recognize what you are seeing; I think we need to ask ourselves, “What is missing?”, “Does what’s missing matter?”, “Out of sight, out of mind?”, and “How does this increase or change our understanding of nature and the world around us?”  And those are questions each individual has to answer for themselves.

  4. Other considerations are “Why square?” – I was able to crop out a lot of the unmanageable parts of the image and the square crop helps us center our focus (in this instance).

  5. Color is a tricky thing.  If I’d left it natural they all would have been a dirty blue with some brownish tones and white.  When I decided to change the color to make the image a little more disorienting  I was surprised to find that each individual image had its color preference.  For example if the image is green (as in #) it’s because that’s the only color that “felt” right.  Honestly the red/purple/blue/yellow options just didn’t fit.   I always find it amazing how once you get started  the artwork seems to dictate it’s own color palette.   I’m curious if painters and other artists feel the same.

  6. I also envision these 9 images displayed together in the following configuration.

    (you can “right click” then open in a “new tab” to view larger versions of individual images for more details.)

You Knew It Had To Happen…

…of course… what did you expect?…It seems that whenever I start making lists…I can’t help but incorporating the items on the list into images. So far in this series I have about thirty items on the list (only twenty which I’ve posted on this blog). So it seemed natural to start creating backgrounds for these “sayings”.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


I am planning on publishing these in book form late 2016 after I get the images completed.
I even have a tentative book cover for the new book. The color for this cover was deliberately kept in the gray tones. It is inspired by a quote from a Greek artist;

“GREY IS THE COLOR OF OUR TIME”
~ JANNIS KOUNELLIS

Truisms bk cover evn smlr