Monday, February 27, 2006

A Valuable Lesson

My astute young friend Mr. George Barnhard of Ice Harbor Minnesota raised a very good point in his comment on utility materials removal, which appears below, under the "Bethpage Landscape" post.
He muses whether it might be beneficial to remove utility structures, for example telephone poles, in order to improve the artistic merit of an art piece. I have taken the liberty of illustrating this idea with a photo I took last year of a gorgeous summer sky. Unfortunately I could not avoid including in the shot a pole and wire or two in my composition. Now, some may argue that the unretouched picture, with intact telephone poles, is the preferable image, but I believe 9 out of 10 art experts prefer the less cluttered, more pastoral, composition of the bottom photo, where the poles have been delicately and carefully exorcised. Now the image softly chortles a beautiful melody of summer. Many would argue it is now poetry.

Sometimes it takes a little work, but there is almost always a way to take a striking image and make it even that much more strikingly beautiful.

Thank you George! A Gold Star and an A+ for you!!

Thursday, February 23, 2006

Arcadia Beach, Oregon Coast

A nice place on a nice day.
Today here on Long Island it's cold and grey and rainy.
I needed an escape. Maybe you do too.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Ants On Speed

Here's another drawing of traffic on the streets of Long Island. This one is a composite made over the course of several trips. Drawing in the car is good practice because you have to draw rapidly. If you get caught up in some detail of the passing scenery, you'll be left miles behind. It forces you to simplify and get the most important lines down.

The automobile culture out here is interesting. Everybody drives because the bus system is minimal and slow. Also, everyone's in a frantic hurry. People drive 20 to 30 mph faster than the speed limit. If you're driving the posted speed, you're a dangerous, slow-moving obstacle. There are also many lunatics that weave in and out of traffic, not just on freeways but also on city streets.

I wish we all drove government-issued cars that had a top speed of 35 mph.

Personally, I prefer walking.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Bethpage Landscape

A snippet of Wantagh Boulevard, showing a backyard with a pool and trees, some laundry, and next door the Bethpage Police Station parking lot and flag. Oh, and a telephone pole.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

Where's The Beef?

This question, and others, will not be answered here. Instead, we will set our sights much lower.

This drawing from last July shows our initial solution to the horribly hot and humid weather: a tepid little fan from the '70's, lodged into the open window. It wafted scalding, sloppy air into the room, which only reinforced and amplified our feeling of misery.

Shortly, we replaced the fan with Ingrid, a monolithic, white, no-nonsense air conditioner on wheels. She was somehow able to wring a 5 gallon bucket of water out of the air in about an hour and a half, which was kind of appalling. Even more appalling was when we would occassionally forget to empty the bucket and it would spill over into the luxurious thick pile shag carpeting...