poemimage

Where text meets image. Where the visual intersects the literary.

Category: Digital collage

Gif Experiments:12 (Creating digital images from ancient sources to accompany related text)

I adapted the sort of art & design nobody signed their name to for the digital collages in this GIF: book covers and a couple B&W illustrations exploring ancient/antiquarian themes & styles. These digital collages are a ‘mash-up’ (remember that term?) and thus, one could say, new works. I continue creating GIFS using vignettes, or anecdotes, from my December, 2019 literary non-fiction book Meme-Noir.

The vignette here is, I suppose, something that happens when the body creates a metaphor or connects to memory in DNA. It relates to the feeling of the images I worked with.

This is a GIF because it is created in a GIF format but it is inordinately long, almost two minutes, with a huge image file. I will create smaller, more ‘traditional’ GIFS from this group of images.

 

 

 

 

 

Developing Images

I scanned an ink drawing done in 2010. I did hundreds of smaller and larger drawings for an exhibition in 2011 of 66 works. This one didn’t make the final cut although I don’t know why.

For much of Monday and half of Tuesday this week I created digital manipulations in Photoshop of the original drawing.

Much of my knowledge of Photoshop comes from exploring but I was fortunate to take a digital design class with an expert.

He was preparing the class for careers in advertising or editorial design. I was the oldest person in the class. The others were all whizzes with software and keyboard shortcuts, etc… I was like a farmer with a mule.

The original drawing has now given birth to 122 images. I scanned the original at 1200 dpi so the images are sharp and succinct. Take them down to 300 dpi to print a book, maybe add text – or leave them as digital collages. Somehow around #80 or so this figure emerged, imagined as the young woman from a poem (written this week) named Mary.

One, of course, should let the work sit and later evaluate it but for now I am feeling none-too-precious about words and ideas. I just might leave it raw and imperfect.

The image of the cross to accompany the Vosnesensky poem I am Goya came from rearranging the comics or graphic novel-type panels. A lot of those in the final 25/122.

I realized after posting I am Goya that I had also posted this poem in poemimage on the last day of November in 2012. Around that time my great journey into loss was underway. I survived. Relating this work by Vosnesensky (& knowing its monumental & historical subject matter) to personal psyche is perhaps not trivial. The word ‘bookends’ comes to mind.

GIF Experiments:9 (Variations in the Middle of the Night)

I woke up at 2:30 am and made coffee. No lights in any other windows.

Thoughts while creating 22 new images for Page 70, vignette #2 from Meme-Noir:

I heard a song that reminded me. Those of a certain age who participated in a counter-culture activity will remember ‘coming down’ after ‘peaking.’ Peaking was a moment when the absolute cosmic explanation for Why made itself known as you rushed straight up into it. Just as you grasped it (inside your head) it vanished. You tried to remember, wasn’t it only a second ago, but it was gone. And suddenly you were ‘coming down.’ Coming down in your body, through your body, was fraught. I started thinking about Theosophy-inspired landscapes and symbols. How those artists would depict peaking. I thought about young people with no tribal initiation or shamanic guidance thrown into powerful hallucinogenic experiences without protection.

Ten of the new images:

 

wordless-into-the-night

   

You Told Me You’d Be Home By Ten

Original

Wind

 

 

When the Situation Hits Reverse

When the situation hits reverse
When you sleep and the situation speaks in tongues
When you don’t have a seatbelt and you don’t have a car

Going backwards off a cliff is not such a bad plan.
You might start dancing and you might change hats
You might introduce yourself as somebody new


But you don’t have a car and you don’t want to steal
So you rise from the dead just to try it out.
And you’re not such a dunce – as you feel your way –
And you spin even more – and feel even more new.

I wrote this in a couple of minutes to the tune of Fates Right Hand by Rodney Crowell – sort of a country rap song from years ago. I always like personal transformation stories. Not that Fate’s Right Hand is a personal transformation story. But I guess the juxtaposition of these images signifies such a possibility.

 

JFK at Woodstock

Just before Jimi Hendrix played the Star Spangled Banner
A wave went through the crowd.
He’s here.

Sleeping girls with feet caked in mud stirred.
Boys asleep with long wet hair awoke.
He’s here.

Potheads spinning up looked down.
Potheads coming down looked up.
He’s here.

Country Joe and Buffalo Springfield and Melanie
saw something moving like a river & coming into view.
He’s here.

He spoke without using a mic.
Ask not what your country can remember for you.
Ask what you can remember for your country.
The crowd applauded and gave him a standing ovation.

‘Inauguration Day man,’ the guy next to me said.
I looked at him closely.

The pottery in the next to last image is of Cucuteni-Trypillian neolithic heritage. I thought it played off the idea of ‘pothead’ as well as being a vessel the motorcade passed through. The images superimposed over JFK in the third image are the Sri Yantra diagram and a detail from the Book of Kells representing JFK’s ancestry. JFK loved poetry and read for pleasure so these are perhaps fitting images of tactile and spiritual deep time.

I do not claim copyright on original images. I have created new, non-commercial artworks for the purpose of parody or commentary.

 

Rice Pudding and Rumi

All I wanted was a can of rice pudding. After a long day I wanted a reward. Not a drink. Not dope. Just some rice pudding.


In other stores I’ve seen cans of rice pudding beside the Devon cream near the condensed milk or in the baking goods section.


I thought of her, who I lost, and how she would heat pudding and serve it topped with Devon cream. I wondered who she was serving now.


The staff had no clue. One said aisle 13 with a blank stare.
‘Isn’t it with the pudding?’ said the one with centipede eyebrows.
I was determined to find the rice pudding section.

A woman without a shopping cart or purse or umbrella studied a jar in aisle 13 and then a bag in the organic section freezer. I figured she was the store detective or an immigrant figuring things out or maybe somebody lonely looking to get picked up.


I checked every possible location. No luck.


I walked away half an hour later in the rain wondering what sort of loser looks for rice pudding at ten o’clock on a Saturday night.


I thought of Rumi saying sell your cleverness and buy bewilderment.
But I didn’t have any cleverness to sell.

Duck and Cover!

Duck and cover!
Head down! Hands behind head!
Knees on floor!

You are Hieronymus Bosch! Imagine flame! Smoke!

As if they were saying,
‘You are now a fish or a block of wood.’
‘We’ve got you where we want you.’

Did no parents, even once, wonder?
Or had the anesthesia already
kicked in.

Remain motionless!

Photos found online of school building and schoolchildren participating in ‘Duck and Cover’ exercises. I do not claim ownership of these images. I have used them to create new works for non-commercial purposes of parody, education, and commentary.