It worked. I resolved the color problem, and learned a little more about the
various options in Photoshop's print dialogs. We're talking POWER here. I'm
using soft-proofing now, and it's so cool to be able to look at an image on-screen
and have a high degree of confidence that I know what will come out of the
printer. My experiments with 8.5 x 11 have been good. Today, I'll print my
first “Super B” (13 x 19) print. It seems that paper and ink will be going
Risking Life and Limb for Art
Clifford Ross is a
very interesting artist. For several years, he stood in the Long Island surf
taking photographs of water, sky and the space between them as hurricanes approached.
unique, painterly kind of image. Not only was it risky (he usually tied a rope
his waist when he photographed), it was technically challenging. In case you
hadn't guessed, there's not a lot of ambient light when a hurricane is bearing
down on you.
Clifford was not going to be a photographer. He'd already been successful
as a painter for some time, and he had only used photographs as a means of
capturing sketches for his paintings. One day, the curator from his gallery
said he thought it would be fun to show a few tiny thumbnail photographs alongside
his very large canvases. Those throw-away images garnered a lot of attention,
and suddenly Clifford found himself altering his artistic course.
Never one to back down from a challenge, Clifford has collaborated with a
machinist and several engineers on one of his newer projects. He's designed
and built a view camera that takes enormous color negatives with incredible
sharpness. There's a powerful context and rationale that drives him in this
project, and it relates back to a centuries-old Chinese painting. Clifford
calls himself a photographer these days, and it's clear that his obsession
is using light to paint art objects.
What in the world is eyebrow threading? I passed by a beauty shop yesterday,
and a sign announced that they now offer this as a service.
Only Skin Deep: Changing Visions of the American Self
Is about to close at ICP in New York. It will be on display from March 25 -
June 13 at the Seattle Art Museum. The show takes a good look at how photographs
make us see race.
In a letter from the Director on the ICP web
page devoted to the show, Willis
E. Hartshorn says this:
“One of the most striking features of American Culture at this historical
juncture, we all agreed, is the profound and unresolved issue of national identity.
What does it mean to be an American? What are the boundaries of the nation?
Who qualifies for citizenship? Who is excluded? Central to these questions
is the troubling issue of race, the aspect of national identity that continues
to defy explanation and to incite divisiveness. Despite regular media claims
that we have moved beyond race or that shifting demographics have made the
concept irrelevant, ongoing political and social clashes attest tot the contrary.
If race is a myth, it remains an explosive one.”
The exhibits offer lots to think about, including reminders of all too recent
history. Next to a series of photos depicting efforts at ethnic assimilation
was this quote:
“... This gesture reinforces the notion that race is something fixed
and concrete, rather than a compelling but fluctuating fiction.”
It would be great if we could really get to the point of relating to “ethnicity”
I don't think I saw a single news report that explicitly acknowledged that
“The Passion of the Christ” officially opened on Ash Wednesday. Nice bit of
There's a lot of furor around this movie. I was surprised to see
David Denby on NBC suggesting that there's essentially one way to portray
the life of Christ, and that's to sanitize its ending and hype the miraculous.
It seems to me that Christ's contribution would be significantly diminished
without the Great Sacrifice at the end, so why not have a more realistic portrayal
of what happened in the last 12 hours of his life, even if it is brutal stuff?
I flipped through the film's companion book in Barnes and Noble yesterday,
and I couldn't help but notice how priestly Mel Gibson looks in a few of the
publicity stills taken during the filming. It makes me chuckle, because he
really didn't seem all that believable as a lapsed priest in “Signs.”
There is one small detail that may be worth mentioning. There seems to be
some very good forensic science indicating that Jesus was most likely very
swarthy, with wooly hair. With all the excitement
about how realistic the portrayal of the events in this film may be, Jesus
is still presented with classically European looks. My guess is that
the “Eurification” of Jesus happened when King James commissioned his official
translation, and the view of Jesus as a white man has persisted ever since.
Or, maybe he really did look that caucasian all those thousands of years ago,
and it's yet another miracle.
Well, I've gone and said it now... I suspect that there are some who would
brand that kind of talk as blasphemy. Well, hey – religion
and science have a long history of not seeing eye to eye; take Galileo for
I haven't decided if I'm interested enough to go and see the movie. It might
be worth seeing just on the basis of witnessing a sociological phenomenon.
I suspect that this movie will be talked about for years.
“If you find your final prints are light and magenta in appearance there's a
good chance that you chose one of the other two modes in error.”
That's exactly what was happening to me yesterday. I got a few really good
prints out of the Epson 2200, then had three bad prints in a row. I checked
the nozzles, and they were clean. I figured I was doing something wrong with
the print setups, but had no idea where to
A quick google today turned up Computer
Darkroom. The feature article on printing in Photoshop 7 and CS set me
straight... I think. I've used up the glossy paper that I was planning to
use, so I'll have to get some more before I know for sure.
In the mean time, Computer Darkroom's tutorial on RGB soft proofing has some
useful pointers about how to make adjustments for printing. One really good
idea is to group adjustment layers inside a layer
for each media/printer combination that you might want to
print a particular file to. That way, you can use a single file to print on
several different types of papers and even on different printers, if you like.
Once I'm happy with the results I'm getting on 8.5 x 11, I'm off to experiment
with larger prints. It will be interesting to see how the Coolpix hold up in
8.5 x 11... I don't expect them to print much larger than that.
Handicapping the Race
Well, it will be very interesting to see how Nader plays in this presidential
election. I think a lot of people are aware that he siphoned votes away from
the Dems last time out. Nader himself seems to think he's more of a threat
to the Republicans this time. I can't imagine that, but if he can create enough
noise, the GOP will have to expend resources to counter two opponents instead
Meanwhile, we're starting to hear the old divide-and-conquer rhetoric already.
They're insinuating tax increases to incite class warfare, and they're making
noise about gay marriages to excite the religious right. Not long ago, they
tried to play the sex scandal card on John Kerry. Expect many more old-school
political tactics masquerading as something else between now and November.
My first attempt at capturing the fountain in front of Chris and Andrea's digs
Free Verse Spam
I took the subject lines of five spams, and with one extra line break and re
sequencing a few words, came up with this poem.
ascetic thousands mugho
re: autocrat vitamin
Brad sidewalk eben
OK it's really more like couplets than free-verse.
For Your Hair-Drying Pleasure
woman's flushed, orgasmic face (has she been using Herbal Essence again?)
suggests that this might be the best blow-dry she's ever had. Makes you wonder
she's snaking the power cord – maybe it's even ribbed, or at least coiled,
for extra pleasure.
The phrase seems to spray
onto her cheek from the hot, hard, smooth gun. The sensual curve of the tool and
its hot nozzle are emphasized.The thing seems to glow with erotic power.
At a quick glance, the word “smooth” could be taken for a smooch.
Of course, if a blow drier could make you feel that good, you'd probably want
to give it a smooch too. Who knew washing and drying your hair could be given
On New York City buses everywhere.
Interesting experiences lie just beneath the surface
Man from B.E.E.R.
I found this mysterious device in the snow a few weeks ago. On the faceplate
under the Anheuser-Busch logo is the phrase “We Tap Talent.” It looks like
it takes a couple of AAA batteries, and has a jack for an earpiece... or is
that a neural jack that connects to a port in the brain stem of the talented
people they've tapped? Is it sending or receiving information? Maybe it's designed
to softly intone “time for a beer, bud” every hour on the hour, or maybe it's
a communicator that allows B.E.E.R. operatives to alert HQ whenever they locate
a deli that's low on Anheuser-Bush products... Alright, so it's probably just
a cheap FM radio, but making up stories is more fun.
“OH MY GOD how could THEY ALL have been so terribly WRONG,”
he wonders. I'd say The Nation got it write.
The soul police are always on the lookout.
This brochure was wedged into the window frame on a bus.
Is it me, or do the graphics suggest an organization that's way behind the times?
Or, are they so broke they haven't been able to afford a graphic designer since