Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Weegees World

I'm not sure how this will work, posting a link, but we'll see. Weegee was probably the first "name" photographer I was ever aware of. He left a mammoth impression on me because more than anything he showed how a single image could tell a story. So look here and taker a minute or two to browse.

Naturally it doesn't seem to work so copy and paste this.

Monday, April 17, 2006

day out at the farm

Had a family day out at a local living museum, Manor Park Farm, which is set up as a turn of the century (last one not this)working farm with animals and folk in period costume. Every now and then I'd take a few minutes to sketch in my beloved Moleskine sketch pad. The myth of their history aside these are wonderfully built, pocket size sketchpads which, even open, fit almost in the palm of the hand. So, if you're like me and a little shy about drawing in public, they are an ideal companion for a day out.

This was my favourite sketch from the day, partly because it caught the birds so well and partly because I rarely manage to put several images on a page and have it work so well.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Movie review

I've just watched "Bewitched" with Nichole Kidman and I can see why it received poor reviews in a lot of places. It was true to the spirit of the original rather than the superficial surface everyone remembers. Kidman channels the spirit of Elizabeth Montgomery beautifully without descending into a straight impersonation, the only question you're left with is why aren't men throwing themselves at her. The conceit of the film being about a TV company remaking the "Bewitched" series adds an extra level to the film with resonances bouncing back and forth as the real life reflects the TV series both directly and in a slightly twisted fashion. Even Will Ferrell, an actor/comedian I've never previously cared for, gives an impressive turn revelling in the inflated ego and attendant insecurities of his character.

The film's mistake was to appear in the midst of TV remake fever and not give everyone the nostalgia fest straight remake they expected. Suprisingly intelligent and clever for a popcorn movie despite the sugar coated ending.


Currently at work I'm trying to teach myself to use a new application, Macromedia Freehand mx. As far as I can tell it appears to be and odd mish mash of bits of Quark, Photoshop and illustractor, an attempt to hit too many bases in one go. That said once you get used to it's little idiosyncracies it seems fairly straight forward. My first effort with it was this logo which turned out fairly well but reminded me of the Quality Paperback logo after a while. I've since made my first professional use of it which I'll upload next week. Over all though I'm on my way to conquering Freehand and developing another new skill.

Wednesday, April 12, 2006

bottoming out

I think I'm bottoming out. 3 Weeks of crap have worn me down, my mood's foul and my health is poor. The one thing that can lift me up quickly is an all night drawing binge with Van Morrison on the Stereo. Not easy to do with a wife, child and responsibilities outside of yourself though. I once described the all night drawing session as the closest I can get to God. Once you pass the tiredness barrier and you keep working you achieve a.... I don't know what to call it. Is it a Zen experience where you connect with a higher conciousness, you become the pencil, the paper, the thought, the image in your head and the music helps you get there? It's probably the only thing I miss from before I was married. It's a feeling of pure creativity without doubts and other thoughts getting in the way.

On the positive side, it's Easter weekend so that means 4 days off work and chocolate, Karen will have finished her latest module on her Masters so we'll be able to get the house back together and I can actually get back on the computer. May even fit some drawing in.

Monday, April 10, 2006

talking to the dead

So it's about midnight in a churchyard and looking for a gate that leads to the land of the dead. And the gatekeeper's a dog and dogs and foxes just don't get along.

glimpse into abyss

Paraphrasing Nietszhe. Except I think I may be the abyss. I feel empty and bottomless this week. And I don't know what to do about it. It's like having the most extreme creative block, one that affects almost everything, even breathing. (well almost).

I think I do not take disappointment well.

Friday, April 07, 2006


Not happy, going for a gastroscopy under local anaesthetic. Camera down the throat. Not happy. Hospitals terrify me. Want to piss my pants but I won't. I'll be a man about it and keep my shaking inside.

Thursday, April 06, 2006


Didn't get the job. Probably going to be doing it for another two to three months though. Don't much care at the moment, feeling a little pissed off to be honest. Not as much as the people I work with, who seem more upset then I do. Most I think are just worried they'll end up with someone who doesn't understand what they've walked into and will leave quickly or be impossible to work with. Reasonable concerns under the circumstances.

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

fox tale

So fox goes to see crow because crow's dark and mysterious and knows way to much about dead things and after some tooing and froing and a little bargaining crow tells fox how to find dead people.

Unpleasant times

Last week was the week from hell. I've been holding down two jobs for the last 6 months, mine and my ex boss's. She was supposed to have been replaced back in October last Year, she left in September, and I was just supposed to keep things ticking over for a month until the replacement was appointed. Six months later I'm trying to do her job and mine still and struggling to find a way to balance both. Sunday night I broke. I've spent the last 36 hours vomiting, wretching and suffering the sort of diarhea you normally read about in horror stories of African Famine. It's now lunchtime on Tuesday and things have calmed down but my body feels like I've put it through a Marine training course after a two day whiskey drinking marathon. Everything internal and external aches. My Skin aches, my eyes ache, my kidneys ache. and tomorrow I get back up and go back to work and carry on doing thethings that probably broke me in the first place.