Friday, January 19, 2018

Jimmy Rules the World or Why He Deleted His Facebook Account

There is a gig that some people recommend to me that I don't really expect to be feasible.  A photo exhibit.  It requires money.  Lots and lots.  Yes, money that makes the world go round.  It is somewhat a leap of faith as such investment could fail catastrophically.  I knew one artist who had great materials for an exhibit.  She used up her retirement savings to pay for the invitations, the gallery rental, promos, and food and drink for the guests.  (Yes, you read right - food and drink - people will not show up if you don't provide them.)  At the end of the day, she managed to sell a couple of prints that represented a tiny fraction of what she had spent.  Perhaps, she was just not lucky.  But I never really believed in luck.  Luck it seems to me is a very thin invisible wire between survival and disaster, and so is an illusion to think that people can keep their balance on it.

In the olden days, an aspiring artist may be able to find somebody to help kick start his venture.  One can find these generous supporters in social hang outs.  Andy Warhol, being a social butterfly, hanged out with people who he swindled to fund his projects.  I suppose nowadays with social medias like Facebook and Twitter, one can have some followings.  In my experience, quite a few of these "followers" don't really care about my art but merely wanted me to go and like their page.  It's the "I'll scratch your back, you scratch mine" approach.  Which drives me to frustration because I would not like something that is utter rubbish, which is mostly everything I've seen.  Perhaps the feeling is mutual.  People think that my work is dung but are willing to show contrived appreciation just to win back a favor.  I don't think that is my gig at all.  Selah.

Thursday, January 18, 2018

A Short Pathology on Selfie

Juzno:  Is that your new selfie?

Mary Suc:  Yes and no.  It's an old selfie but yes it is my selfie that I just posted here.

Juzno:  Where do you usually post your selfies?

Mary Suc: Facebook for the most.  My friends love them.

Juzno:  How many FB friends do you have?

Mary Suc:  2,758 and growing.

Juzno:  Do you know all of them?

Mary Suc:  No.

Juzno:  So what is the point of selfies on FB?

Mary Suc:  Gloating.  Showing off.

Juzno:  Are selfies supposed to represent your good side only?

Mary Suc:  Sure.  No one wants to see or hear you when you are down and out.

Juzno:  Isn't that kind of fake?

Mary Suc:  Perhaps.  But as long as people think that you are doing fine then it is all that matters.

Juzno:  Thank you for sharing your selfie.

Mary Suc:  My pleasure.  And don't forget to like.

Originally posted on January 17, 2014

Wednesday, January 17, 2018

Three Wise Sages in Manhattan

My liberal friend advised me not to pull out my stock from the market, and not to use the tax credit with this new tax bill.  I never understood money matters.  Once I met a guy while in line at a liquor store in New York.  He befriended me and had called me a few times.  We just shot the breeze.  And then one day, he introduced a business proposition.  I told him that I don't do well in finance.  He asked if I wanted to make additional money on the side. I may be naive but I really believe he was being sincere.  I told him I was not interested. I was being honest and frank.  He never called me again.

Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Has Facebook become irrelevant?

Juzno:  What is it like to be young and free?

Eleanor:  It sucks. Like I want to grow up so I can do things my parents don’t want me to do.

Juzno:  Like what?

Eleanor:  Like travelling around Europe, driving a car, and I also want to see Blue Oyster Cult in concert.

Juzno:  I don’t think they have played in years.  What is your perspective of the world?

Eleanor:  Like sometimes I wonder if the world is what I perceived it is. Or could it be that I am watching something that has already occurred in the past? How do we know what we know? How can we be sure? Maybe all of these are virtual realities that exist only in some ethereal black box that transcends time and space.

Juzno:  That is so heavy.  Baruch Spinoza?

Eleanor:  No, Winnie the Pooh.

Juzno:  What do you think of Television?

Eleanor:  Like it’s a full time job watching television.  I’m not into what people watch in television.  Most of them are so jejune.

Juzno:  Another heavy terminology.  You must have read a lot of books.

Eleanor:  Not really.  Like I'm more into Tumblrs.

Juzno:  Has Facebook become irrelevant?

Eleanor:  Definitely.  Like people on Facebook are self-absorbed.  It’s all about selfies, me, and mine.  People don’t have serious convictions.  Like all they do is copy and paste stuff from cyberspace, and pretend they are in the know like pompous penguins.  I’m rarely inspired when I read their posts.  They are quite pathetic.  Like nothing is original. 

Juzno:  What is original?

Eleanor:  Like in order to define original, one has to define what isn’t.

Juzno:  Okay.  What isn't original?

Eleanor:  Like X-men, Walking Dead Series, Socialism, Wall Street, PETA, Global Warming – and so on.

Juzno:  And what about original?

Eleanor:  Like Muhammad Ali – now he’s original.  Folks like Sugar Ray Leonard, Usher and Will Smith all ripped off from Ali.  Even Obama borrows a lot from him.

Juzno:  Didn’t know you knew so much about human events.

Eleanor:  It depends.  Like we all have an opinion of something.  We may know so many things and yet we can be so ignorant about all of them. 

Juzno:  You’re from California, aren’t you?

Eleanor: Like why you would say that?

Juzno:  Like you said…

Originally posted January 18, 204

Monday, January 15, 2018

Sax Man in Prague (They call me Deacon Blues)

Learn to work the saxophone
I play just what I feel
Drink Scotch whiskey all night long
And die behind the wheel
They got a name for the winners in the world
I want a name when I lose
They call Alabama the Crimson Tide
Call me Deacon Blues

"Deacon Blues" as written by Walter Carl Becker and Donald Jay Fagen

Friday, January 12, 2018

A lonely man trying to save the world from Climate Change.

I am taking a break from photography.  In the mean time, I have taken another job.  It doesn't pay.  And definitely a thankless and futile one.

Have a blessed weekend.

Wednesday, January 10, 2018

The Tourist in Prague

We were in Prague in 2013 when I shot a picture of this unsuspecting tourist.  I think the Astronomical Clock in the middle of the Old Town Square had begun to set its motion, and people wanted to capture that moment with their cameras - mostly with smart phones.  In this case, the lady was using her iPhone.  At that time, the iPhone had evolved to better versions.  Its camera was quite handy in documenting ones travel experience.

Taken with my Fujifilm X-Pro1 and converted to black and white using the Film Noir template of the Nik Silver Efex Pro.  I thought that the monochrome rendition would go well with this scene.  It reminds me of the vintage photos found in 60s magazines.  So in a sense, it's very retro.  The vibe is 60s style with a twist of 21st century technology - notably the smart phone.

Hope your day is going well.

Tuesday, January 09, 2018

My Photography Set Back, and Why I Hate Apple

I hate Apple.  All my Apple devices refused to sync until I updated to MacOS High Sierra - the latest iOS, which sucks.  Because:  I used Nik Software for my photo editing.  And Nik was bought by Google.  And Apple hates Google.  So my software no longer works like before after I updated my iMac.  I learned that DXO bought Nik Software so I'm hoping they might fix the bugs in the existing software.

Monday, January 08, 2018

A Moment in Time No. 6

Andy Warhol?  Cristo?  Were they art geniuses?  Or were they just good in marketing their art?  And then you have Richard Prince.  Controversial for stealing other people's works and repackaging them as his own.  For Prince, I read somewhere, the lawsuits are the artwork. In the case of Warhol, he didn't even do his own arts.  He had people who did them per his suggestions.  Cristo?  What about him?  Seems like he just wanted the attention.