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Thanks, but no 'Thanks'

Journal Entry: Sun Mar 7, 2010, 12:50 PM
The world is filled with good intentions...


So I ended up getting over 1000 Faves and other comments from my DD! How fun!!

And how long could it really take to send a simple "Thanks for the Fave" to each one of those folks?

Turns out, more time than I have free time for. Way more. 5 days later, and I've done about 150. Because even with the simplest "Thank and run", some image or Journal title will catch my eye, and I'll end up poking around and killing 5 minutes on what was supposed to take 10 seconds.

Plus I realize, based on some replies I got, that the expectation is that people *won't* get an individual "Thank You" for Faveing a DD.

So, while I *am* thankful, and still kind of on a buzz for all the very nice comments and Faves, I'm giving up on the notion of replying to each one, at least any time soon. I'm sure all the Deviants out there would rather I spend my time either working on new stuff, or looking at and Commenting on *their* stuff.

So much for good intentions.

  • Listening to: My iPod from A to Z
  • Reading: Against a Dark Background, by Iain M. Banks
  • Watching: Big Love, Lost (still hooked), Daily Show

Holy Crap!

Journal Entry: Wed Mar 3, 2010, 4:27 PM
Another DD!!


Caught by a Breeze by kparks

Well, this really made my day! Another 15 minutes of fame!!

A big Thank You to 3wyl for the suggest and opioid for the feature.

And of course many, many thanks to all my dA friends, Watchers and supporters.

Naturally, all the Faves and positive feedback on that image (and others in the series and in the gallery generally) is very gratifying and encouraging. I'll be responding to all the Comments and questions of course, and at this point I *plan* to send a "Thanks" for each Fave as well, though this DD has lead to more than twice as many Faves as my previous DD last year, and it took about a week to get through those, so I have my work cut out for me.

Makes me think on the one hand about becoming a promoter of the NNTR concept... nntr.deviantart.com/journal/15…. So we would all spend more time looking and creating, and less time thanking for the "Fave and run".

But on the other hand I *am* thankful when someone adds one of my images to their collection. True, it doesn't take a lot of commitment on their part, you just click a link. But it means someone was responding positively to the image for at least the time it too them to move their hand and index finger. And with all the thousands of images within the dA world, even that small effort means *something*, means that they related to the piece on an intellectual or emotional level, and told me so by Faving.

And just because something shows up in the DD panel (which is great for the artist because of the extra exposure) doesn't mean it's easier for someone to Fave. Each Fave is just as meaningful to the person doing the Faving. In fact, I probably have *less* of a tendency to Fave on a DD because those images are already getting lots of Faves and Comments, and I'd rather give feedback to the more obscure artists or images.

And so I need to send a Thank You for every Fave. Eventually.

Seems the least I can do.


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  • Listening to: My iPod from A to Z
  • Reading: Against a Dark Background, by Iain M. Banks
  • Watching: Big Love, Lost (still hooked), Daily Show

Time for a new Journal entry

Journal Entry: Sun Sep 27, 2009, 12:08 PM
As soon as I can think of something to say.


In the mean time, here are a few recent non-photo Faves to look at.
Vulcano rescue by JCallius adam by Slawekgruca Snape is singing by Tamillla
Help Yourself by meluseena :thumb134869102: :thumb134894630:
unseen face by shelooksideways Provoking me? by frecklefaced29   Shelter From the Storm by Jillianelf
abstract 05 by CorpusPineale Catch my eye by vereshchenko :thumb125836345:
Unperfect Fox 2008 by leavingsosoon Green Silk Stocking, 2007 by leavingsosoon Arrow by M-1
Coal Miner Bird by sigu 2725 by santosam81 Missing Child Portrait 51 by johnpaulthornton
Dao by mouse2cat 5 point's trees by mouse2cat a pear by Girl-anachronism


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  • Listening to: My iPod from A to Z
  • Reading: The Man Who Tried to Save the World, by Scott Ande
  • Watching: Flash Forward (I'll give it a shot)

My fifteen minutes... begin counting!

Journal Entry: Sun Jun 7, 2009, 11:29 AM
  • Listening to: My iPod from A to Z
  • Reading: A Corpse at the Koryo, by James Church
  • Watching: The West Wing, season 2
From the depths of obscurity to fame and fortune!


(fifteen, fourteen, thirteen...)


Well, more like slightly less obscurity, a momentary prominence in dA's little corner of the internet, at least.

Of course, praise and recognition are always fun and satisfying. But it feels odd to get a DD on an image that, I have to say, is not one that I feel is among my strongest. Not to look a gift horse in the mouth at all.

I'm VERY glad that EternalFallacy found it interesting enough to recommend, and that opioid would choose it! And I never post anything that I'm not happy enough with to put my signature on, as it were.

(twelve, eleven, ten...)

But getting a burst of activity and messages and comments makes me mull over, at least briefly, why it is I'm here on dA. For me, having a dA gallery basically serves as motivation to create new work. I try to post something new every week. Not that I have an artificial quota for myself, but because if a week goes by without something new to post, that means a week went by during which I didn't create anything worth posting. Which is a bummer, because the time I spend on my art pieces is so enjoyable and satisfying, though occasionally frustrating and *unsatisfying* if after many hours of work I end up with nothing, zip, just more files filling up the old hard drive.

(nine, eight, seven...)

And so, after a few unproductive weeks, as my dA traffic slows down from lack of new work, I get tempted to post something that I'm not entirely thrilled with, even though I tell myself repeatedly that it is the *quality* of the work that counts, not the quantity. So there's that inner conflict between the "only post the best" voice and the "Zero messages??... nobody loves me anymore" voice.

(six, five, four...)

But then when I see that the new visitors generated by the DD are looking through my whole gallery, and faving even some of the old pieces, I realize that there's probably truth to the old "there's no such thing as bad publicity" saying, and so I'm back to being thrilled to have a work of mine included amongst the DDs, and looking forward to working my way through the replies to the various messages, and hoping I'll have some time at the end to work on some more new stuff, and recommitting myself to only putting up things that I'm completely happy with, and hoping I can blow the socks off of all those new Watchers I've accumulated today. :-)

And a special Thank You to all my past Watchers and friends! DA is always a highlight of my day.

(three, two, one... and *back* to obscurity. Thank you Andy Warhol, wherever you are.)


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Wow, just wow!

Journal Entry: Fri Apr 24, 2009, 9:40 PM
  • Listening to: My iPod from A to Z
  • Reading: A Corpse at the Koryo, by James Church
  • Watching: The West Wing, season 2
a DD all my own.


What... they changed the Journal editing interface. Hope this doesn't mess up my CSS.

Anyway, I got the big shock of 180+ messages this morning. Fortunately, it was for a DD for one of my images, and not because I had left some comment someplace that had pissed someone off and started a flame war or something.

I'll add more here later, but now I'm interested to read and respond to the comments.

For now, it's cool and fun to get some wider exposure. :-)


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Long Walk on a Short Pier

Journal Entry: Fri Mar 6, 2009, 9:37 AM
  • Listening to: Cocteau Twins
  • Reading: The Steep Approach to Garbadale, by Iain Banks
  • Watching: The Daily Show
  • Drinking: it all in
Why do people take pictures of piers?


They are often uninteresting structures. It starts on the land, sticks out into the water some ways, then stops. To me, a pier ought to be neutral at best, but more likely would fall into the "forbidding" category. (A long walk down a pier deposits you into the water, not a natural place for a person to be.)

"What's the fascination?", I wondered?

So I did a little exploring and collecting, and found a few answers for myself.

Symmetry, or Asymmetry


Sometimes it's obviously about the aesthetic and compositional values, whether  it's for the strong, calm symmetry...

Plank Walk by DenisOlivier Two Ladders And A Pier by DenisOlivier Steel Rain by acukur
:thumb113653927: L'echelle by xavierrey:thumb102270529:

or for the more active diagonal.

Bound by marcopolo17 night... by Kaarmen :thumb113341988:
:thumb111980115: :thumb78281426: Breakpoint by itsamiracle
Quiet Moment II by xavierrey The Silver Path by Sun-Seeker Minimal from the kitchen by vvolfmann

Because It's There


But some seem less a Work of Art (no offense intended), and instead essentially a documentation...

Lake by bubblecherry
Old Pier by von-balthazar pier by kuschelirmel-stock


Being a big believer in subconscious emotional reaction as a driving force in art, as well as life, I figure there must be something deeper here compelling people to click that shutter button when they see a pier, and when I looked more closely at the *titles* that people gave their images, I think I eventually got my explanation.

It's the Title, Stupid.

Unfortunately, thumbs in Journals don't pull in the Title, so I have to supply those :-(

Inviting :thumb112540273:

Come Ride With Me Come Ride With Me by DenisOlivier

touching to eternity :thumb112895618:

Walk of Life   Walk of Life by FireflyPhotosAust

Follow the Road Follow The Road by nilgunkara

anticipation :thumb91853404:

will you take me this time? will you take me this time? by dresdenblue

Memories of Us :thumb111541826:

And the one that really hit me on the head,

Launching Launching by Initio

So to many people the pier is more than an extension of the shore, more than a structure that allows you to leave terra firma and safely "walk on water", as it were. It's not about the drop off at the terminus of the pier, but instead it's about where that next step takes you.  The end of the pier represents the *beginning* of a journey, not the end.

Or, maybe I'm reading it all wrong, and it's just another phallic symbol. ;-)


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Radar-worthy deviants

Journal Entry: Tue Feb 24, 2009, 11:26 PM
  • Listening to: NPR
  • Watching: Star Trek Next Generation
  • Drinking: it all in
Some relatively unknowns from my collection.


The problem with having a Journal is, it's like a garden, always reminding you it needs tending.

So it's *finally* time to pull the weeds, and plant a few new things. I want to spotlight a few artists who, IMHO, ought to be on a lot more people's radar, if their Watch list and Page Views are any measure.


Great motion, great color, wonderful abstracts

OK, there are lots of folks creating interesting images with motion-blur, but Cay69 has some quite original takes on the matter...
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ by Cay69 ...--_.. - - - by Cay69 - -   ....  _____ by Cay69 _._._._._ by Cay69 '--__''__'-- by Cay69 ..... ___-_-_..... by Cay69

There's a depth and texture to these that I find mesmerizing. (Yes, soft and squishy counts as texture.) And the colors are so sweet, I can almost taste them.

A classic, updated.

One of my absolute dA faves is PolaroidVanGogh

What this guy can do with a few square inches of picture space constantly amazes and delights me. (full-size view is essential!)

One Way Woods In Snow by PolaroidVanGogh Canal In Spring by PolaroidVanGogh Fire by PolaroidVanGogh Cherry Blossoms and Stone by PolaroidVanGogh Little Yellow Babies by PolaroidVanGogh Blossoms Arrival by PolaroidVanGogh   The First Turn by PolaroidVanGogh

His name, while it may seem a bit pretentious, is IMHO well deserved.


Busy artist, busy art

Another deviant toiling in relative obscurity is racingspoons

Again, unique images, a *ton* of work, a distinctive, consistent style, yet each piece stands up on its own.

coming of the corneal c by racingspoons preyer of the populace by racingspoons smoke surreality 5 by racingspoons smoke surreality 6 by racingspoons Arbitrary Design by racingspoons swirling unknowns by racingspoons


Double Vision

In the case on szellemidezo, he's rather into the mirror image thing, which I have to say I'm also quite enamored of. Hardly visited at all, and not the sharpest pics (camera phone?), but effective nonetheless.

rekurziv erdei nimfak by szellemidezo akac szemek by szellemidezo fuvek megtestesulese by szellemidezo kik neztek... by szellemidezo Az erdo demona by szellemidezo Az alkonyba borulo fa szelleme by szellemidezo

Can you say "anthropomorphize"? (seriously, is that a word?)


Not quite unknown, but still deserves a plug

This next one, magdalenawanli, while she's less "unknown" from a  page-view count, I just can't skip an opportunity to give her a plug.

This is a real Artist at work. Her pieces are so finely crafted and display such creativity, I can see why she has so many Watchers. She has such a variety of images, subject, etc., and yet glancing through the thumbnail view of her gallery reveals a somehow-consistent vision to the works. I could Fave practically every piece.

. .  .   .    . by magdalenawanli . . . by magdalenawanli .   .    . by magdalenawanli .... ..... ...... by magdalenawanli ..... .................. . . by magdalenawanli .     . by magdalenawanli

This kind of art is a real inspiration for me to try and always do my best work, and not post whatever the latest piece I was working on just because it's done.

Well, that's it for now. Give the lesser-known artists a visit, a Fave, and  Watch!

Of course, all but one still beat *me* in page views :-(


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The Lone Figure

Journal Entry: Sun Jan 11, 2009, 8:14 AM
  • Listening to: NPR
  • Reading: Mindscan by Robert Sawyer
  • Watching: Bollywood movies (Om Shanti Om)
  • Drinking: it all in
Small person in a big world.


I've always loved classical Chinese landscape painting.

library.ust.hk/info/exhibit/au… onfinite.com/libraries/1135591… www.xabusiness.com/images/chin…

Towering mountains, waterfalls, rivers, lush vegetation, mist, and almost always a small figure of a traveler crossing a bridge or rowing a boat, down in a corner of the foreground somewhere. I'll call this person The Lone Figure, whose placement in the image was meant to symbolize man's relatively tiny presence within the wider world.

Here's a modern take on that tradition by irethkalt   The Phases of Water by irethkalt

The same figure often appears in American Western landscapes... www.artknowledgenews.com/files… and European Romantic landscapes as well... www.artknowledgenews.com/files…

In my wandering through dA, I've come across and collected a number of modern versions of the Lone Figure. But IMHO, the presence of the figure can add very different things to the images.

"Ain't Life Grand?!"

Sometimes it comes off as a good thing...

will you take me this time? by dresdenblue Year after Year by gilad Valencia ::8 by MisterKey Ponte Vecchio Florence by phototheo Three Crowns - Green by papadre His Steps by Ageel Stepping Out by gilad Paris XV : La Defense by sensorfleck The Hugeness Of Telluride by PolaroidVanGogh Shooting in the Fields by geolio Sand Waves by thibanphoto

"It sucks to be me."

Sometimes being The Lone Figure comes off as a bad thing (isolation)...

Lost His Friend by alsaigh ALONE by Braq :thumb81138342: :thumb49997748: Man  in  the  Mist by Scarllet loneliness III by devllaa   Walking on Clouds by gilad   Cover Me by nilgunkara

OK, that last one isn't a person. ;-) But for me, the effect is the same.

"Just another day..."

Still other times, The Lone Figure is surprisingly neutral...

The Long Way Home version 3.0 by geolio Walk The Line by FelixTo Tea _ Man by alsaigh watching horizon... by denis2 Sunday Ride by nxxos Cesenatico ::2 by MisterKey Mavi I by acdsee One Over One by Genesis-Orbit

MartinStranka has an entire series devoted to The Lone Figure... Staring At The Wall by MartinStranka strany.deviantart.com/gallery/…

Why is the inclusion of a Lone Figure sometimes inspiring, and sometimes depressing? Often it's obvious (the pose, whether you see the face or not, general tone of the image), but other times it's less clear what the Figure is doing there, what part they play in the impact of the image. But if you remove them, it will totally change the end effect of the piece. Which I find fascinating.

OK, lecture over. Sorry. But at least I hope you enjoyed the images.


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What's Not There

Journal Entry: Mon Dec 15, 2008, 4:18 PM
  • Listening to: NPR
  • Reading: Juxtapoz and Dwell magazines
  • Watching: The first season of West Wing on DVD
  • Drinking: it all in
My first feature!


Starting small.

I thought I'd feature a few items from my favorites that caught my attention because an important aspect of the image is something that exists *off screen*, but whose presence is still perceived, and is integral to the image.

I'm sure there are tons of images that do this, but these are the ones that I've run across that I particularly liked.

Afternoon Walk with the Geese by PolaroidVanGogh   Tree in the water. by innapnirhu  :thumb101287299:  :thumb74843298:   Shdow tree by MissUmlaut  :thumb106356727:  :thumb85880772:

and my favorite

Time still by MissUmlaut because it tells so much with so little.


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Got my journal CSS working

Journal Entry: Wed Nov 26, 2008, 4:32 PM
  • Listening to: NPR
  • Reading: Rollback, by Robert Sawyer
  • Watching: The first season of West Wing on DVD
My second journal entry.

Woo hoo! I got the journal CSS to work. I still want to refine it some. But the basics are up and running.

I'll have to think of something to put here.

Trying this out.

Wed Nov 26, 2008, 2:57 PM
My first journal entry.

As the title implies, I'm just starting to use the Journal feature...

Mostly to explore the CSS options for a contest I'm thinking of entering.

<div class="test>Does html work in here?


...

Well, *this* is certainly exciting. :^

I'll have to think of something to put here.
  • Listening to: the ringing in my ears
  • Reading: about journal css
  • Watching: the cursor as I type