I haven’t been blogging.
I know I should have been and I meant to. I have even been taking photographs and saving images to my desktop to write about and share. I have been faithfully noting down interesting excerpts from the books I have been reading, and writing down thoughts about my own art and the art of others. But, I haven’t been blogging.
There is a reason, and this piece of writing is less like a ‘dog ate my homework’ excuse and more like a reflection on what it is that is making me avoid my blog. I suspect most professionals, particularly those in the creative sector deal with this; Computer Fatigue.
I have recently been chained to a screen, in the last throes of book illustration (digitally, with a Wacom tablet) essay season at Whitecliffe (often sent digitally and edited using Word ‘Track Changes’) and compiling images, bio’s and proposals for various projects. I have been feeling all typed out and the end of day when I can finally close the laptop and sign out has become a blessed release. The thought of opening another browser window, typing, and worse yet editing writing makes me cringe.
Is this a modern day malaise?
Recently as more of my paid work has become computer based I have noticed myself shrinking away from extra curricular internet activities like replying to emails, organising online payments and even looking up directions on Google Maps, preferring instead to wrestle with the out of date partially unbound map book in the car, or even take my chances when I think I know roughly where something is (I have been using a lot more petrol doing so!).
Is this a common thread in today’s increasingly screen related society? More and more of our work and our leisure time is online and onscreen, and in my experience I notice that the more time I spend “lost in that hopeless little screen” (Cohen 1992) especially during work hours, the less I tend to use for my own creative practice or for entertainment purposes.
Perhaps I am just in a slump, perhaps it’s just something I need to get over in order to continue on doing what I do. Perhaps avoidance might not be the best tactic, maybe I should take a more re-immersive approach and simply get back into it.
On that note here are some of the things I have been collecting:
This image is one that has been lingering with me and I have been thinking about it since I saw it in the news after the factory collapse in Bangladesh. It actually feels a little irreverent to talk about it, like it should be only talked about in hushed undertones. However, part of what attracts me to it aside from the tragic, desperate romanticism is how one image can hold so much narrative. This one moment captures so much of what is good and what is bad about humanity. Both flip sides of the human coin in one frame.
He Died in his Sleep
This is a moment I caught with my phone’s camera very early in the morning before the Mall had a chance to sanitise their entrance before opening, this pigeon had died in his sleep and when the rest of his flock flew off at my approach, his stillness caught my eye.
These next two images have been floating around on my desktop for a little while and I have been meaning to post them up here, not so much to reflect on, but just as wonderful little moments in themselves.
This marvelously mountainous abstract image is a microscopic view of one of my favourite pastimes.
It is a record needle in a groove on a record at 1000 times magnification.
I have never quite been able to figure out how records play music, it all seems like magic and witchcraft to me, and this image does nothing to dispel that idea.
This last one is also a magnification. This beautiful curly paisley-ness is actually a picture of something called lung surfactant. It’s a liquid that coats the inside of our lungs and lowers the surface tension, allowing us to inflate our lungs with less effort.
Science is awesome.