Friday, 30 March 2012

IQ is not directly proportional to income - IQ Test

Darren, your IQ is 126  (nor are they accurate)

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IQ Test

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I would advise to use the last test in this blog.  It appears to be the most accurate!

Thursday, 29 March 2012

The End of Art (or just the start)

This is the back cover from my 12 page journal entitled "A Madman's Hall of Fame Issue" where I have explored themes such as consumerism, fashion, food supply, stereotypes, progress and the future.  All of these pages were executed quickly in a single session and were content heavy and art light.  In the next journal I want to explore the medium a lot more and make it more about the visuals and less 'statement art.'  This page is created in that vein.  If you are making a political statement and it is against the status quo, what better art form than graffiti. Having decided this, I admitted to myself that I had a poor understanding of graffiti and vowed to use my next journal to pursue a better understanding of the art form or at least the stylistic elements of the art form.  In this pursuit I have made the last page of this journal a summing up of what happened in this journal, that is, a hijacking of visual art for the purpose of making political statements, or, "the end of art". If you look closely you will see the graffiti drawn on a page of writing, this is once again Dr Anandale's Dictionary of Precise English and features the page containing the definition of 'graffiti'.  The rest is done in markers.

My next posts will be from my new journal entitled "STR8UP: a personal graffiti journal." Stay tuned.

Tuesday, 27 March 2012

The 5.7L V8 Fossil fuel burner, creates a thrill in red blooded males across the continent (myself included).  Fuel companies and their powerful lobbiests will ensure that you have the right to burn as much gas as you want in the name of pleasure, power, and sheer wanton depravity.  These same lobbiests and their sheep-like fuel burning ecophobes will make sure that progress will not supply us with a viable electric alternative any time soon.  If you can't beat them, join them.  That's why I work for a Dodge dealership, home of the 392 ci (6.4L Hemi). Lithium Ion is not quite as sexy, until you see the electric powered drag racer on you tube below.

Monday, 26 March 2012

7 Billion is Enough--Its a Small World After All

If you have been following you will see that I have been manufacturing art over content on many of my favourite pages.  In this journal I am making commentary, or content heavy, art light pages.  Just a few more pages and I will return to lighter fare.

Sunday, 25 March 2012

The National Pastime

As a part of my on-going collaging journal with social commentary I have used found images and papers to create my personal editorial on meat consumption.  Although not a "sanctimonious vegetarian" as I've heard outspoken vegetarians called, this is primarily a personal journal and this was a commentary that I feel good about defending.  By looking at the next image, this is more of a statement about "consumption of flesh" in general.

Thursday, 22 March 2012

"Shopping Lust Almost Killed Her" and "Gone Fishing"

Once again, all the images used in this page were taken from the pages of a fashion magazine. What if all that was known about our culture was taken from the pages of a fashion magazine, or any other magazine for that matter.  I started with Hers..."Shopping Lust Almost Killed Her."  I figured that if I stash these pages away with a fashion magazine in a time capsule it will create an enigmatic anti-fashion statement.

If woman all love to go shopping, then men love fishing.  "Gone Fishing" uses fashion magazine images to create 'lures' for men. After all fashion magazines are lures, are they not?  Quick, set the hook! 

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

A New Aesthetic

or: Get Rich -- The Science of Poverty Denial.  This is what I mean by using images from a fashion magazine and turning them into anti-fashion.  Fashion magazines seem to be about construction of beauty and weight loss.  Money can buy beauty because manufactured beauty is the only beauty celebrated. After all it is the corporations paying for the media and if you don't need their products to be beautiful, they can't succeed.  Below is the ultimate beauty...starting with a male frame that is emaciated from starvation, then add silicone perfectly formed parts to create the ultimate manufactured beauty.  "Realize the Potential."

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

My New Journal/A Madman's Hall of Fame Issue

Art is about influences.  After some journalling time off I was brought back into journalling by the same inspiration that got me started in the first place: my wife Louise.  Louise was journalling and creating mini journals from water colour paper that was cut, folded and sewn together into small journals.  She recommended that I try this format as it would allow me to work through a theme in a journal with a finite number of pages. I also was shown the work of Teesha Moore ( ) and being a bad follower I attempted to work in that style but it may be hard to tell.  When I use fashion magazines for my collages I sort of lean to anti-fashion.  See the detail of the table of contents for this journal on the right.

Definitely interesting things ahead....

Sunday, 18 March 2012

New Job / Charger

New Job/ Charger -- On April 30 2011 I took a leap of faith and started selling cars full time commission only.  I went to work for Waverley Chrysler and immediately fell in love with the Dodge Charger, which was the first car I sold on the first day of work, to the first customer, making me feel good about my choice of new job.  Left is a gel transfer of a brochure page from the Dodge Charger.  Below is the accompanying page.  With the excitement of a new job, this would be the last page I would do for more than 6 months and the last one in my "Things" album. Watch for the start of a new album soon.

Saturday, 17 March 2012

Friday Night

Friday Night -- follows the popular theme of party nights (see "Saturday Night").  This is a simpler version keeping with my quick attack theme that seems to be pervading my journal during this period.  This piece was done around February 2011.  I am slowly catching up to the present.  When I get caught up I will have to start making art again instead of just blogging about it.  This is much better in person as this posting is a photo complete with glare.

Designer Must Have

Designer Must Have- collage phrase from a Fashion magazine, which I recommend highly for anyone doing collage in their works, some scrapbooking paper on top of an ancient "Dr Anandale's Concise English Dictionary" page.  This page was just made for one purpose--design. I even added words to create a message around the dictionary page, but really it just says that these are a bunch of words that don't say anything but look like they have something to say.  It is purely for design. This is page 1 of a 2 page spread.  The 2nd page is exactly like the first.

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Beer Can Art, Again!

Under the theme, keeping it simple, I drew what was in front of me, and when I was done I cut a piece out of the can itself and collaged it to the page.  This is actually P1 of a two pager with an up close image on the next page.  Clearly need to get a new source of inspiration! 

I was actually working on a large project at the same time that I did this.  I found a large coffee table book of EXPO '67.  I liked the book and started altering it right away. I did several pages but didn't like any of them.  I put it down for a few months and hoped that it would speak to me when I picked it up again.  It did not so I threw it away. Now Boddington's...that speaks to me.

Spring Flood

A photograph taken with my cell phone camera of spring flooding in Crescent Drive Park in Winnipeg.  Louise is in the center of the picture.  It is collaged with matte gel to a red square with crackle finish.  The background reflects the picture.  Spring 2011.

Wham Pow

One of the hardest things to do is decide what your page will look like before you begin.  Do you have the whole thing done in your head, or do you put in a few elements and see what happens.  I am a little bit more of the second than the first.  I start with a theme or idea.  If I don't it will be a shambles.  I lay down the background first, figure out what I want to do with the space, and lay out the central images.  I then fill in details like shading and lettering for the message that I want to include.  I almost always add shading around the outside to create a definite space.  One of the problems of course is getting started on a page.  The other problem is declaring the page finished.  Some people can do it quickly, but my pages need some time to steep in my mind before I add the next element.  This of course can lead to long periods of inactivity.
  After months of inactivity we packed up the journalling studio and put it all away in buckets.  A long time went by with occasional glances at the journal before I opened it to actually work in it again and when I did I just wanted to do something fast and easy to get me started. Wham/Pow.  What could be faster than that.  The next group of pages that I will be showing were done quickly.  Without a permanent workspace/studio, I got in the habit of planning, painting, and finishing a piece in one sitting.  Here is the results of my first piece after a year of inactivity in this book.

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Aging Adds Character

Take a few photos from the shoe box, a nice piece of scrapbooking paper, and age the hell out of them. 
Aging Adds Character

Monday, 12 March 2012

My Girls

Great Pictures of the Girls taken by extraordinary photographer Sophie Kelly collaged on highly textured paper with multi colored background. Left: Kate, Below Sophie


Passion, Obsession, Soaring & Exploring, Gravity Oppresses: or mood disorders as decorative art.

Sunday, 11 March 2012

Here She Is

This portrait of Louise was done from a stencil interpretation of a photograph.  It is part of a theme of several pages including the previously posted stencil of myself on white paper with stamped letters.  The theme was "Need". The next image was also part of this theme but I have left the stencils behind and gone for pure texture.  The texture was created by using acrylic medium and pasting crumpled  tissue paper to the page and then gessoing it and painting over top.  The smaller stamps are hand made from erasers.

Self Portraits

Two side by side self portraits from stencils.  I was looking at the work of Shepard Fairey and decided to make a stencil of myself.  The image on the right is taken from the stencil and colored with oil pastels and India Ink (see previous posts).  I stamped repetitive background and colored light and dark rays .  On the left image I repeated the same image but painted over the stencil fleshing it out a bit and added the red "obey" as a shout out to Shepard Fairey who inspired this work.
This is a simple inking of the 2 pc stencil with a message.  I banged this version out in an hour but even though I began to spend hours on each page, I like this piece much better.
  Keep it Simple Stupid

Saturday, 10 March 2012

No Sharking

Last night I went out and played pool with Louise. We have begun playing pool together again. A couple of years ago we played pool for the first time. I was playing well and she wasn't. As two very competitive people it can be very bad for your relationship if you are not careful. I was making bank shots, combos, running the table. I am seldom that focussed of a pool player. It was a bad time to start acting like Tom Cruise in "The Color of Money." Needless to say we did not play pool for years after this. I played well last night but kept my mouth shut. I am sure we will be playing again soon. 

The rack of balls in this page was done with oil pastels and India Ink. The backgrounds were painted with acrylic and textured with matte gel medium. The "pocket billiards" and "Billiards Table $39.99" are 'borrowed' and collaged.
The 'catalogue' text from the "Billiards Table" insert reads:
once in your basement, this billiard table will provide an attractive surface for the folding of laundry, a storage space for boxes and other storage, and will even provide cover in your home in the case of a tornado or other small disaster! Table includes....

Friday, 9 March 2012

Gibson Obsession

April is Gibson month at Long and McQuade.  Every year I get their catalogue and stare dreamily at the pictures.  I have a guitar and I play terribly so I just look at the catalogue and dream: that I can afford the guitar, that I can play the guitar, that I am a golden guitar god...oh sorry!
If you've been following, my last post was done with oil pastel, covered in India Ink, and then I scratched the ink off the oil pastel to reveal the colors underneath.  The 'raw' paper absorbs the India Ink leaving black outlines.  This was done with the same technique with the addition of printing and stamping. It is a two page spread.

A Little Modernism

Based on a basic technique from a children's art book, I created these works with oil pastel as resist and black India Ink. The images may look familiar to anyone who is familiar with my etching on metal for jewellery ( see ).
  Now they look totally different in color with black borders. This technique worked so well that I explore it in my next few works that will be appearing in the next few days. The look, style and cohesiveness of this piece is such that if I were producing for a market I would explore this a whole lot more, but this is just for fun, so I do a page and move on to something else. Stay tuned to find out how I incorporate this style with other media to create journal pages.

Thursday, 8 March 2012

No Country...

 Make a Page on the theme "No Country for Old Men." 
I chose to make one on the poem "Sailing to Byzantium" by William Butler Yeats.

That is no country for old men. The young
In one another's arms, birds in the trees
--Those dying generations--at their song,
The salmon-falls, the mackerel-crowded seas,
Fish, flesh, or fowl commend all summer long
Whatever is begotten, born, and dies.
Caught in that sensual music all neglect
Monuments of unaging intellect.

An aged man is but a paltry thing,
A tattered coat upon a stick, unless
Soul clap its hands and sing, and louder sing
For every tatter in its mortal dress,
Nor is there singing school but studying
Monuments of its own magnificence;
And therefore I have sailed the seas and come
To the holy city of Byzantium.

O sages standing in God's holy fire
As in the gold mosaic of a wall,
Come from the holy fire, perne in a gyre,
And be the singing-masters of my soul.
Consume my heart away; sick with desire
And fastened to a dying animal
It knows not what it is; and gather me
Into the artifice of eternity.

Once out of nature I shall never take
My bodily form from any natural thing,
But such a form as Grecian goldsmiths make
Of hammered gold and gold enamelling
To keep a drowsy Emperor awake;
Or set upon a golden bough to sing
To lords and ladies of Byzantium
Of what is past, or passing, or to come.

I decided to do a 4 page spread, each one different artwork, style and composition with its subject reflecting one of the 4 different stanzas.  This seemed to bog me down for such a long time,  This is the height of thematic multi-page journal pages.  Although two years later I will go on to do much larger journal projects, but I am getting ahead of myself.

I loved the 4th page of this project, not just for how it related to the poem but for the backgrounds and the pen and ink architectural drawings.  I was so happy with it that I signed it, another first.

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

Saturday Night

These are a few of my favorite things -- This is page 2 of 2.  It incorporates some labels from my favourite wine bottles, beeswax candles etc.  If you want to know what the etc. is read the gold lettering below the Folonari label. 

Say "No" to Pain/ Say "Yes" to Drugs

Transforming Pain into Art -- For a year I had a backache.  It hurt to walk, to bend over, to run, to do anything.  I went to the chiropractor twice a week, I had an MRI, Xrays, and other diagnostic scans.  There was nothing wrong with me. My doctor finally assumed that there was soft tissue inflamation and recommended high doses of Ibuprofen.  At the same time I started taking Ibuprofen in earnest, I bought a new Sealy Posturepedic.  Immediately, I felt the difference.  The pain went away and never came back.  That's worth a journal page!

I downloaded the images of the skeleton and the vertebrae.  I printed them on regular paper in black and white.  I tore the edges from the paper to leave a natural rough edge.  I teastained the paper to create an aged look on the paper and collaged the lettering and the arrow etc.
On page 2, I painted a colorful background and collaged the rest of the images on.   I am proud of this 2 page collection.  Again it makes a powerful statement about something that was extremely personal and important to me. 

I like the play on the common "Say no to drugs."
I am a firm believer in the benefits of modern medicine and although my pain was mild compared to people who have intense pain management problems I can definitely attest to the statement that pain ruins your quality of life.