February 25, 2008

L'il Pollock

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Photo Friday's current and far-reaching theme of art has me digging, not too far back, into the vault. Rather than displaying an sublimely abstract or bokeh-heavy piece of photography, the theme reminds me more of this literal take on the subject – a tidy vignette of a moment I caught last spring while Kerry and I were at the Museum of Modern Art in New York. Resting my tired feet on a bench in a hall of gigantic Jackson Pollock works, I watched this kid – huge Pollock fan, it appeared – incessantly urge his parent to take this rigid pose beside this piece. Flash off, I snuck this snapshot off without the camera-toting guardian noticing.

February 24, 2008

It's All Fun And Games

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Left: the victorious captain's log details the moment of enemy capitulation. Top right: let the records show it was a close battle. Above right: I diplomatically signal the end of combat.


Local and international news services may not have picked up this minor story, but not since 1812 had Canada and America waged such a ferocious military battle as they did for one fine hour last week. And much like the former skirmish – but with myself at the helm – I pushed back an enemy Yankee advance in a victorious engagement of GoogleChat Battleship. Led from a secret command center in the swamps of New Jersey, the once-heralded power of the U.S. Navy could not successfully penetrate the Canadian defenses. Mission accomplished, the five-colour-with-varnish banner would declare, triumphantly across the deck of my remaining destroyer – if I could afford a banner of such quality and lustre.

So, what to do in the ensuing peacetime? How about four hours of cartoons and an all-you-can-eat cereal buffet – that's what the Cinematheque was serving up this weekend. Starting off with see-it-to-believe-it episodes of Super Friends, The Amazing Chan & The Chan Clan (featuring voice-work by Jodie Foster!) and The Jackson 5ive – and heaping bowls of Honeycombs and Froot Loops (a growing-up fave, now decidedly disgusting) – the marathon continued with even hokier episodes of cartoons featuring The Partridge Family (in 2200 A.D., no less) and Rick Springfield. While there were definite duds in the mix nearer to the end as the audience's sugar high subsided, it was worth it to endure for some Scooby-Doo and the ultimate guilty pleasure: a glimpse of some He-Man.

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Clockwise from top left: wearing my cartoon marathon finest; sweet sustenance!; He-Man inspires Javier Bardem's Oscar-winning haircut; Kerry at the buffet.

February 18, 2008

139: Cereal For Dinner

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Top row (left to right): synchronized swatches!*; glass car on blue sky. Middle row (left to right): living-room lamp abstract; our new dinnerware is making you sleepy; the bedroom bamboo. Bottom row: me, flashing myself at night.

I didn't do it cuz' it's cheap / I didn't do it for the freedom / You know what? / I did it 'cuz sugar and milk is good eatin'. – Mcenroe, "Cereal For Dinner"

It's Manitoba's inaugural Louis Riel Day long weekend, Kerry and her sister are girling it up in New York and Philadelphia – and I'm reacquainting myself with the camera, having only taken a few shots with it since New Years. And all the while I've managed to squeeze in a few bachelor weekend essentials: leftover pizza for breakfast, leftover pizza for dinner, Hockey Night In Canada with a brownie and ice cream, White Stripes turned up to 11 and watching a tape of The Big Lebowski while my inner dude abides. Yessir, the February long weekend has been the greatest addition to Canadian society since universal public medicare.

(* if you get this reference, then a gold star for you.)

February 16, 2008

Szczecin, Zachodniopomorskie

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Pronounced like it's written, I'm assuming – that's where a recent Jeopopolis visitor hails from, in Poland.

As both a statistics and geography junkie, it never ceases to amuse me to check the hit
counter doohickey I installed on this site and learn the weird things that lure visitors. Inexplicably ­ – or until I learned of Google's purchase of Blogger ­ – the average monthly number of visits more than doubled, beginning in December. And I mention Google because the doubling is made up near exclusively of Google image searches (a touch frightening on its own, considering all I read about image theft in illustration and design circles). More amusing to me though, is the list I keep on file of countries where visitors originate; last week, the oppressive, Internet-starved regime of Burma/Myanmar became the 115th nation to be represented by a visitor to Jeopopolis. What was the Myanmarian doing here? Image-searching on Google for pictures of "mo" (crazy Myanmarians, always wanting mo') – hitting up my illustration of a blood-sucking mosquito.

But if you told me three years ago that I'd have visitors from Albania, Algeria, Argentina, Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Belarus, Belgium,
Belize, Bermuda, Bolivia, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Botswana, Brazil, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Cameroon, Canada, Chile, China, Colombia, Costa Rica, C├┤te d'Ivoire, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, the Dominican Republic, Egypt, El Salvador, Estonia, Finland, France, French Polynesia, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, Honduras, Hungary, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Iran, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Kenya, Kuwait, Latvia, Lebanon, Libya, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Macedonia, Malaysia, Maldives, Mauritania, Mauritius, Mexico, Moldova, Mongolia, Morocco, Myanmar, Nepal, The Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Poland, Portugal, Qatar, Romania, Russia, Saint Kitts & Nevis, Saudi Arabia, Serbia, Singapore, Slovakia, Slovenia, the Solomon Islands, South Africa, South Korea, Spain, Sri Lanka, Sudan, Sweden, Switzerland, Syria, Thailand, Trinidad & Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, United Kingdom, United States, Uruguay, Venezuela, Vietnam, Yemen and Zambia (not to mention hits counted from the Faeroe Islands, Taiwan, Puerto Rico, Hong Kong and the Palistinean occupied territory) – I would have said you were pulling my chain. Not so much anymore.

February 11, 2008

138: Choose The Red Krill

PhotobucketChoose the blue krill – the story ends, you wake up in your bed and believe whatever you want to believe. Choose the red krill, and you stay in Wonderland and I show you how deep the rabbit-hole goes.

Har har. Drawn entirely in the forever-abandoned vector program Freehand – yeah, I'm still a stubborn arse when it comes to vectors ­ – for Illustration Friday's theme of choose. Textures added in Photoshop. I'm no sci-fi geek, but I couldn't resist this reference. Click here for a bigger view, if'n that's your thing.

February 03, 2008

137: The Boxer And The Boxed

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One thing that the stubble I let accumulate on my face any given weekend has going for itself is that it can make me look awfully decrepit. Pieced together with bedhead and my frumpy faded green hoodie – the most comfortable item of clothing, ever – and I may not be much of a specimen. That was part of the inspiration behind this impromptu diptych. The remainder comes from Kerry's avid – and growing – fascination with the boxing-related workout she attends more and more each week (so much so that she invested in this pair of extremely cool Green Hill gloves). So this past weekend, when the winter afternoon light was screaming just so through our living-room window, we posed for each other in order for me to craft this slightly-Photoshopped scenario.

Both photos underwent some post-production, primarily with the burn tool to eliminate background information (not hard, considering the focused power of the sunlight). My own portrait features added treatment, in the form of missing teeth and a slight shiner ("gross", Kerry winced, when she saw the end product on screen). Though no physical harm was inflicted in the making of this diptych, I cannot stress enough how similar the end result would be after an actual tilt in the ring.

Better looks at the portraits can be had here, and here.