It’s Nothing Without the Paper

An interesting thought I’ve been pondering in the background for quite some time:
 
I’m sick and tired of hearing people bash digital artwork and conceptual work as being something less than a sketch on paper. Absolutely done with it. And I’m talking about the work involving creating that which doesn’t exist, not hacking two photos you found on Google together to put another pony car on a set of off-the-shelf rims. I’m talking pure conceptual work here.
 
Let’s consider a pencil and marker sketch versus one created on a tablet using pixels, or even a photograph: It’s not as though a photograph is providing you with a small, actual landscape or an 8×10-inch person to tote around; nor does the marker rendering, or even the digital sketch/painting. All are artistic REPRESENTATIONS of something, and require a certain set of skills to create with any success. Don’t get me wrong, there is a HUGE gap between the good and the terrible, and that comes down to knowing the tools (doubly-so for a digital artist seeking to emulate a traditional tool or media, as that artist needs to have experience in physical AND digital media) and using them as a craftsman should. There is good art in any medium, be it sculpture or painting or drawing or photography or motion pictures and more. Ability and drive and vision aren’t limited to one tool, and if you think that they are, then you are severely limiting your outlook.
 
The digital stuff suffers because it’s created using a bunch of ones and zeros and can be wiped from existence with a key stroke, but it has the ability to exist everywhere. You can scan an analog piece and share in that instant, global sharing, much as you can with a digital photograph… And you can lose the original by spilling coffee on it as well.
 
Oddly enough, each is nothing without the paper it’s presented upon. So do tell me again where digital art is some lesser form because doesn’t exist until it’s on paper. And good luck sharing that original analog piece on social media without scanning it into bytes of data. Tell me how digital “ruins” the art. Go right on ahead.

Editor’s Notes. Again.

Excerpt from the editor’s email, Sunday Morning Mood Killer/Everyone is a Critic/This Really Goes Against the Whole ‘First Day of Spring’ Deal edition:
“I have taken the liberty of once again removing the line: ‘Having only been recently exposed to the English language makes his appointment to United States Poet Laureate (Southwestern Limerick Division) all the more impressive’ from your ‘biography,’ as documentation of the alleged appointment appears to be little more than you responding that the ‘burden of proof is on your ass for questioning such an accomplishment in the first place,’ and that if I would like to ‘continue enjoying the lavish lifestyle that the retainer fee provides, along with the gift subscription to Cat Fancy Magazine‘ that I would ‘recognize my place in the universe’ as being ‘little more than some chubby girl whose poetry is so bad that she has to eek a living by proofreading the work of others’ would probably not stand under close scrutiny.

Also note that the twenty-seven page footnote regarding an ‘asparagus-like pee with no recollection of having eaten the vegetable in the previous day or two’ and it’s apparently ‘having something to do with the old lady that sneezed near me’ and your subsequent reference to yet ANOTHER footnote describing some psychological disorder which ‘the olfactory-borne memories of mothballs, boiled cabbage and Lemon-Scented Pledge, along with the visual of doilies’ has left you with (and that you are “currently self-medicating as a remedy for” using the “remainder of the Enzyte free samples crushed into a fine powder and mixed with flat Coca-Cola to form a paste” which you then explain – in excruciating detail over the course of sixty pages – the process of “spreading the paste over your mid-section, paying close attention to the belly button region” because, and I quote, “that’s where the little bastards put the probes to avoid detection, and the resulting wound provides a faster path to the bloodstream,” which I can only assume is a reference to Chapter 7.4086.3.6.1 – which many may point out appears PRIOR TO CHAPTER TWO – ‘Abs of the Space Gods,’ in which you have drawn a diagram of your penis with the notation ‘Belly button actually appears slightly higher, but was too difficult to draw in detail considering the pushy nature of the Editor and her alleged ‘schedules’ and ‘other such bullshit’ so you drew it ‘hidden ever-so artistically just behind the head, which almost makes it look as though it has an afro’) has absolutely NO basis in scientific fact nor merit. We have been over this numerous times, and the publisher will not accept your “Belch That Tasted Like Bologna Even Though You Haven’t Eaten Any” conspiracy theory — used in a prior revision to support the previously noted ‘asparagus pee footnote,’ and now again here, even after our assumed agreement that it be stricken from the final copy as mere conjecture — as proof of it being a “natural phenomena that some hack like Bill Nye could explore in his down-time between flights to hippie conventions with that other sack of shit,” as it will surely lead to some legal action from his people (although I do agree that they may be, as you so eloquently pointed out in the elevator in which we stood but inches behind them, “moderately-functioning brain donors, and if not that then some inbreeding experiment gone both wrong AND right in some respects”). You are a difficult man to dislike, and for that reason I will continue to read and attempt to edit your work here. Please renew the subscription to Cat Fancy. And also, why not consider a nice gift box of chocolates for this chubby girl to enjoy while she crafts more bad poetry?”

Touche’, Editor Lady. Touche’.

Welcome to Hell: That’s a Triple Word Score!

Words are your friends. Especially when you take the time to spell the fucking things correctly.

I’d imagine that Hell, for many people anyway, is just a never-ending Scrabble tournament. Or in many cases, a round of “Wheel of Fortune” featuring only palindromes with silent consonants, or phrases with an apostrophe.

Overdub-a-dub-a-dub

Mid-Week Motion Picture Blockbuster Idea Time!
 
In today’s pitch, we examine an alternate dimension/time travel story which may work even better as a YouTube channel, as the Copyright issues are more inexpensively solved by simply shutting it down, versus paying a lot of royalties and licensing fees; not to mention saving time in meetings and all of that crap. That said, I present to you another of my “BILLION-DOLLAR FLASHES OF BRILLIANCE.”
 
In this concept, we have a film studio mogul, Fred Lerner, who is on his last dime, and desperate to help not only his studio, but that of his adopted, half-twin brother Marjeesh, whose Bollywood studio is about a half-century ahead of its time.
 
In the grand tradition of colorizing classic cinema, Lerner has this idea to concentrate on the sound of films, namely Westerns and Cowboy films, by overdubbing the Native American voices with those of actual Indians (from India). Imagine films like Stagecoach being adapted not only for profit, but to ease College kids from their safe spaces by replacing the threat of an Apache attack with something far more pedestrian:
[insert wavy filter, a-la a “Brady Bunch” dream sequence]
 
Cavalry scout: These calls are full of Windows 10 help desk scams. They’ve called every number in town.
 
[referring to Indian scout]
 
Cavalry scout: He had a brush with them last night. Says they’re being stirred up by Dave in Houston.
 
Capt. Sickel: Dave in Houston? How do we know he isn’t lying?
 
Cavalry scout: No, he’s a white guy. They hate telemarketers worse than we do.
 
…or watching Two Chicken Vindaloo for Sister Sarah, or even more modern films like Cowboys and Undocumented/Questionable Visa Status Workers, or Brokeback Call Center. That last one will be a triumph in OUR film, as Fred Lerner will call upon the talents of his colleague Jorge Dukas to assist in digitally remastering and adding a CGI sidekick, Jayjit Chirkut for comedic relief. The seventeen prequels will introduce a host of action figures and mini mall play sets.
 
In any event, the films are a success (that is, the films within OUR film… That’s not to say that they wouldn’t be better than the shit that Hollywood – or Bollywood, for that matter – crank out now), and Lerner actually jump-starts the entire Bollywood thing, which, as it turns out, was all a dream in the secondary subconscious dream world of Marjeesh, having accidentally ingested too much curry while bathing in the Ganges. It’s like “Inception” but with more poo.
 
Next time we’ll explore the fertile and as-yet unspoiled genre, the “Documentary about the Making-of Documentary Disguised as an Expose’ Wrapped in a Tribute and Served as a Converastionalist-Style Monologue Between the Multiple Personalities of a Movie Blogger Who Only Watches Sci-Fi Trailers on a Sketchy-at-Best Airline Wi-Fi Connection.”

Enslaved by Zero

“You haven’t done enough Math-type stuff lately,” you say?

How about this:

Being Tuesday, let’s look at dividing by zero, and what it does to a Facit ESA-01 mechanical calculator. Neat (and a fine impression of a car I had in College that ate lifters as a steady diet), but what does this have to do with Tuesday? I mean aside from the fact that the resale value of that car I mentioned was precisely zero dollars.

Consider that Tuesday in many languages has connection to Mars, which, having exactly zero oceans, it has zero elevation with regard to sea level.

More? Consider that it was Merton Davies who selected a line along the crater Airy-0 a the Prime Meridian 0.0° longitude as the reference point for determining geospatial coordinates on the red planet. Davies was born on September 13, 1917, which was the 286th day of the year. Two minus eight gives us negative six, and adding six to that gives us… Zero.

All things are delicately interconnected, kids.

Spirit Animals and Blows to the Cranium

Transcendental Tuesday: Sleep Deprivation-Inspired Spiritual Hallucination Edition:

Anyone else find it statistically improbable that not one vegan who goes on some psychoactive-fueled journey EVER returns with news of their spirit animal being a Tiger Shark? I mean, as a carnivore, I once had a vision (following a pretty violent blow to the melon by an open cabinet door) that my spirit animal was broccoli, and it awakened a feeling of solidarity with the majestic green beast, and I began to wonder if tiny little birds built tiny little (well, slightly-bigger-but-tiny-in-proportion) nests within the broccoli branches, and that kinda freaked me the fuck out because accidentally chewing an itty-bitty beak would be like when you eat a clam and get some sand, and the grit is all like “CRUNCHACHRUNCHA-GRIND-GRIND-GRIND” and you have to spit it out. Only beaks would be worse, so I decided to never again eat broccoli. Also, I started a foundation (read as “tax exempt venture” or “Al Gore”) to keep zoos from displaying broccoli. To this day, not ONE municipal zoo has captive broccoli in their collection, thanks to the billions of supporters who read our propaganda, and failed biology in grammar school. But I digress.

I mean, consider that over the millennia, there had to be at least ONE vegan who craved a burger, or perhaps one Tiger Shark who, while munching on a hapless swimmer thought “you know, I need to stop this, because humans have feelings and lawn chairs that somehow wind up in the reef have a lot of fiber.” And, according to new age mumbo-jumbo, their souls must have crossed in the ether…

Food for thought the next time a bunch of you pile into Braiden’s Prius to head out to the festival: Your underarm scent may trigger an awakening in them, and then they’ll eat you. And probably your shoulder bag. And the floor mats. I mean those fuckers will eat anything, regardless of what color its aura may be. And if you have a friend named Aura, she’ll probably incite this shark-hippie hybrid much faster, because that’s how names work, so you’re best to just bike there anyway.

Fan Fiction Friday

Fan Fiction Friday, Amazon Reviews Edition:
 
Probably not what they were looking for, but then again, they seemed awfully eager to know what I had thought of the book I had just received, and not yet had the time to read… So I did what I could:
 
“PRO: I have spent many an hour pleasuring myself to the photograph of the author on the sleeve.
 
CONS: While this has been (for the most part) enjoyable, I would suggest renaming the outer cover from ‘sleeve’ to something more descriptive, like ‘crinkly, sharp-edged, glans-destroying, hard-to-clean fantasy accessory.’ Don’t get me wrong, it was much better than the cheese grater-like effect of, say, a V.C. Andrews die-cut job… And while I can certainly attribute SOME of the discomfort to technique, perhaps a warning regarding the dangers of a laceration (or MULTIPLE, perhaps) during periods of furious enjoyment would be helpful to some readers in the future.
 
Also, please suggest to the author that the photo on her next dust jacket not include her extended family, as it required some very crafty folding on my part to eliminate the effect of what can only be described as a very condescending facial expression on whom I perceive to be her pet cat, or perhaps a strangely small dog or misshapen troll creature.”

B-Side Single Video Production

If you’re a band and looking to create a video for a B-side single, the least that you can do is hire a B-movie director to craft the thing. It just makes sense, you know?

Focusing on the golden era of music videos, I can’t help but imagine “Murder By Numbers” from the Police, set as a Larry Cohen short film, with the numbers in question bridging It’s Alive with a slightly more cerebral The Stuff. Better than that, a Troma Pictures-esque video for “How Soon is Now?” from the Smiths… Or even a super-low budget Robert Rodriguez-directed “Tainted Love” by Soft Cell, which, while not a true B-side in that form, it was originally a Gloria Jones tune (1964; re-released in ’76, and then covered by Soft Cell in 1981 should you be keeping score), which could be an utterly epic, if not campy sci-fi-thriller about imported love that is, well, tainted with a virus. Or a present-day Jerry Lewis in a Rob Zombie-directed remake of Michael Jackson’s Thriller short, but using the original cut, “Starlight.”

Or we can abandon the B-side thing in favor of an Adam Jones stop-motion epic for The Human League’s “Don’t You Want Me” (which was the A-side to the terrible “Seconds” – don’t get me wrong, that whole JFK thing could work as a John Waters send-up), set as a peek into the breaking mind of a jilted lover… So many ideas.

Garage Band Performance Art

I know… Most cover bands opt for the hits; the better-known songs, and sprinkle a set with a few key B-sides. What makes this trio what they are is having three members.

Wait, no… That’s not where I was going.

These guys have managed to capture the decline of Guns N’Roses… The years of infighting, manic-depressive behavior, and drug addled ruin, and packaged it in one take.
Seeing it this way elevates it from mere “learning curve” stature, and boost it to something more, transcending the headache it inspires.

It’s not a jam session.

It is PURE performance art.

…at least through the eyes of a modern art critic, I’d imagine. Welcome to the Age of Entitlement. Grab a trophy on your way out.

You Can’t Just Hand Someone Entitlement

A successful culture builds upon the past, providing each generation to follow with not only the tools to continue their growth, but the foundation to build upon.

However, watching these Sanders supporters in action, it’s painfully obvious that the new idea is to eliminate the last generation of free-thinking Americans. The ones who were fortunate enough to listen to first-hand accounts of horrors brought forth by rogue governments and dictators and despots. The generation following mine is somewhat clueless, having been the first of the hard-core “participation trophy” and “no-spanking” bullshit style of passive parenting. And THEIR kids, these miserable, candy-assed, lazy fucking douchebags…They teeter on barely functioning, intellectually, and utterly clueless issue-wise, yet they sure as hell have no problem rambling on and on via 140 character-long rants of piss-poor grammar. They’re distracted and entitlement-borne, and primed to usher in the golden age of another “leadership” disaster. And don’t kid yourself, you saw it this week already: The fix is in. They’re not even wasting time with the lube and dirty talk they had to employ in 2008 and ’12. They’re diving right on in, because they’ve already laid claim to it when you opened that door the first time.

Hyphenate it any way you want, but Socialism is Socialism, and it has NEVER WORKED, PERIOD. Erase history and rewrite it all you’d like, but simple facts remain. To function at even the most base levels, that idea requires a working class. And expecting that class to be earning a huge salary only leads to crippling inflation, and a lack of demand for product, which eliminates the jobs. The ouroboros eventually runs out of tail to munch upon.

Yet, if you’ve raised a couple of generations on empty promises and worthless goals like celebrity and material worship, anything with “free” in the name becomes nearly impossible to NOT want, and by the act of merely offering it you can garner support. After all, nobody actually expects it to be delivered upon; they’re conditioned to live for the thrill of that moment when it’s MENTIONED, bracketed by whatever hashtags are trending. It’s brainwashing and conditioning, and they’d realize this if they had to attend any of the classes they’ll pass simply for having signed-up in the first place. And you can’t expect any of them to pay for shit they don’t use, right?

It’s 2016, and the future is fucked.

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