Expat

Monday, April 30, 2007

Friday, April 27, 2007

Moldy Old

I love cheese, a sprightly cheddar, a ripe blue vein, mmmmmm tasty, team it up with some dry crackers, a glass of red and call it dinner. But watching a cheese mature, well it's like watching paint dry or grass grow, but there is no accounting for other people's tastes.

http://www.cheddarvision.tv has had over a million views of just that. It is a web site that features a cheddar cheese maturing. It's into day 127 of its 365 day gestation and getting stronger by the hour.

Consider this a public service announcement for the action challenged.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

The latest artist to grace the walls of the pissedpoet guest galleries is Louise Mann. A West Aussie by inclination she has hung a series of beach inspired abstract photographs that really do talk about the Aussies love of surf and sand.



Entitled 'Ocean's Edge' these hauntingly beautiful abstracts were created in the camera, with digital manipulation being limited to minor retouching of blemishes.

One can't help but wonder how Derek over at JPG Magazine would view these? To see all of Louise's excellent work drop on by the pissedpoet guest galleries

Saturday, April 21, 2007

Movie with Abstract

Last night I watched ‘The Island’ which turned out to be a much better movie than I anticipated. The concept of the film, medical clones leading meaningless lives whilst waiting for their owners’ need for body parts was a credible starting point. And, whilst the action sequences were spectacular and innovative they did, as is usual with this film genre, stretch the suspension of disbelief to the max. On more than one occasion, I found myself saying “yeah right, as if,” as our hero and heroine escaped, unscathed, from yet another cliff hanger or in this particular case, sign hanger.
What I did find of major interest in The Island was the on-going reference to Picasso’s Femme Assise (Jacqueline). Painted in 1962, it was hanging on the wall of the head bad guy’s office in 2050 and featured in numerous shots. Being a major fan of the master it was, for me, the movies saving grace as it slipped into its predictable story line.
Painted in shades of grey it did give the badies’ motives a greater depth especially during the chief henchman’s Road to Damascus scene. Drawing one back to the underlying premise of the film after the roller coaster ride of thrills and spills.
But not enough, I am afraid, to drag The Island out of a ‘B’ classification. My best beloved says I expect too much from the movies, and I suspect she may be right. But in the words of another immortal, the venerable TS Eliot, “I grow old, I grow old, I shall wear the bottom of my trousers rolled.”

Friday, April 20, 2007

So Many Friends

I have survived numerous elections, federal, state and local through my years in the wide brown land, but never was my peace shattered by the rat a tat tat of a Pollie at the front door. I have been told that it happened and I have no reason to disbelieve the teller. Sure there were many visits by Mormons and Jehovah Witnesses and others with a creed to sell and if hit when in the mood a lively debate on my threshold could ensue. But never a Pollie, be they Liberal, Labour, Green or Pink darkened my door step.

Here in the Pearl the electioneering for the upcoming Congress, Senate and Council elections has ratcheted up a notch. Several times a day now the peace is shattered by loud speaker bedecked Jeepnies/trucks/tricycles plastered with many sets of smiling pearly whites trundling down our street proclaiming the virtues, in song and with promises, of the smiling one.

Last weekend the main men and women themselves were out pounding the pavements. Pressing the flesh in sleepy suburban streets (if any street in the Philippines could be called sleepy, but you get my drift) smiling, raising eyebrows, shaking hands and slapping backs. Even your humble Kano scribe, who cannot vote, received his fair share of congratulatory greetings. I am told the pesos come later.

As my neighbour, the venerable, 78 year old, Papa Florencio said “I never knew I had so many import friends.”

Thursday, April 19, 2007

To Scratch that Itch

I don’t often promote other web sites here, why would I want to direct you gentle reader away from the delights on offer here, but I did come across the Dezine Design site which offers something other than I do. And it is made and run by a couple of Expats, who we all know are the salt of the earth.

If you have a creative bone in your body you will find something of interest at Dezine Design. For those who are up to their elbows making art in all of its many and varied ways their Creative Exchange has a host of resources to aid and abet your endeavours. For those who are just dipping their toe into the pool for the first time The Fun Side will gently lead you through the myriad of ways to share your creations with the wider world.

For all with a creative bent Dezine Design also offer cost effective ways to get your work out there and if you are just into retail therapy with an arty flavour their online shops may well scratch that itch in the best possible way.

Drop on by Dezine Design, they don’t bite, well only if asked very nicely.

Monday, April 16, 2007

Imagekind Delivers

It was with baited breath that I opened the solid cardboard tube that Fedex delivered last Friday afternoon. Inside were the first canvas prints that American print on demand company Imagekind had printed for me.

After removing the staple off came the plastic cap in the end of the tube, out came a couple of wads of tissue paper and there they were wrapped in brown paper. It was soon discarded to reveal, wrapped in 7 sheets of tissue paper, the prints themselves. Talk about a kid at Christmas time. Wading through packaging they were pinned to the wall to get a decent look at them.

The verdict, bloody stunning. Such depth, subtlety of colour, such life, so much better than they looked on my monitor. Being somewhat bigger at 48" (120cm) on their longest side helps, but even so they are ..................

This Imagekind mob live up to their rhetoric and then some. To say I am one happy camper has got to be the understatement of the year. Parting with these babies is going to be tough, just hope their new homes are loving ones.

Below are pics of the prints, Another Landmark Christmas and Shrine I that Imagekind printed.






Friday, April 13, 2007

Troubled Times



The latest guest gallery to be added at www.pissedpoetpics.com is by expatriate American photographer Marc Nader. A lecturer at the American University in Beirut he has a series of images from his adopted country which shows the Lebanon not shown in the nightly news. Click on the link above and follow the links to the guest galleries to see Marc's work.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Another in the Shrine Series



This is another in the Shrine Series. I hope that some of the snap shots in the previous entries about Holy Week will work so well. Who would have thunk it, an atheist posting so much quasi religious stuff, only in the Philippines Ü.

Sunday, April 01, 2007

The Grand Inquisition of Photographic Judges and Arbiters

Over at the Luminous Landscape, one of the better online photography magazines, I was reading an article by the publisher and primary author there Michael H Reichmann entitled the Levels of Abstraction. In this essay he questioned the validity and the existence of The Grand Inquisition of Photographic Judges and Arbiters. Well Mick I am here to tell you they exist and their high priest is Derek Powazek, the editor of JPG Magazine.

A couple of days ago I posted an article there telling people of a way to use their editing software to achieve the Lensbaby look for their photographs. The Grand Inquisitor, in his wisdom pulled the images associated with the piece that illustrated what to expect when working through the process after about 36 hours for and I quote “Overt digital alterations, including cutouts. Adjustments to color and sharpness are fine. Just don't go nuts with the Photoshop.” I consequently pulled the article, for without its visual illustrations it was half the essay. You can see the essay with its attendant photographs here.

So folks take a photograph using a Lensbaby and as far as JPG magazine is concerned it is fine, create the same effect on a straight photograph using the dreaded Photoshop and it will never darken the pages of the JPG Magazine nor its web site

What a load of crap!
What hypocrisy!

My advice for all the Grand Inquisitors out there, for what it is worth, is welcome to the 21st Century and all of its ways to express one’s love for the photographic image. The Ludites died out in the 19th Century, you should really try and catch up.