These posts are either "jump pages" for my weblog or posts-in-process that will eventually appear there. For what it's worth, here's an archive of these random bits. The picture to the left is by a famous comic book artist.
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The following is a selection of images culled from Krystal Ishida's VCL page. I like them for their simple iconic punch, ability to capture emotion, and formal invention. Her use of color is especially good. She recently upgraded to Paintshop Pro 7, which I'm somewhat ambivalent about, however. All the drawings below except the last one feature a jagged, pixelated line (a byproduct of scanning the original drawing) that isn't so "professional" but contrasts nicely with her shading. One of the problems with computer drawings in general is a kind of smooth saminess of texture: that "airbrushed look." The pixelated line brings a kind of crackle to all that sameness--like spicing up bland food. In the artists's most recent drawings (see "Krystal as Capricorn"), the new software gives a smoother line, making the drawings more professional and seamless, but perhaps at the expense of the crackle. I say perhaps because I'm waiting to see where she goes with it. In "Krystal as Capricorn," the clip art flowers provide a certain amount of that needed contrast. Majora Prowling Kib Walking (animation) Mystica Fighting After the Battle Power Furs Dark Cocomon/Aisha Mystica at Night Mulonica in the Sunshine Patch and Jock Krystal as Capricorn
Addendum: My concerns about the line quality were misplaced. In her most recent drawings she's really getting it down, using two or three shades in the outlines. Also, she's been posting some pencil drawings on non-VCL pages that are just great. I'm completely envious of her confident hand. Most artists who draw so precisely are a bit cold and unemotional in their content, but not so with Krystal. These drawings brim with energy and good humor. I have more to say about this work and will put up some more links soon.
Addendum 1/5/03 Some new pencil drawings by Krystal Ishida have been uploaded here (may load slowly). This is some of my favorite work of hers, because you can see the line before it gets computerized (even though it's scanned, of course). She's really good at groupings of characters, where they're all interacting in some way. "Link hit with frying pan" (hyperlink removed) is also a grabber. Here's a detail of his hands:
Press Release: Hotel New York, PS1 Contemporary Art Center, Gallery 205, curated by Alice Smits
On Sunday Oct. 8, 2000 between 12 and 6 pm a legendary seventies consumer machine will check into Hotel New York and present a day-dream performance for one day.
The legendary status of the CED video player "SKT-090" by RCA stems from its short availability: CED was the forerunner of laser discs. The crucial difference is that these discs are made of vinyl and played back with a needle, almost like an ordinary record. Similar to the short history of the 8-track audiocassette, CEDs lasted less than 5 years as laser discs became the more popular and reliable media.
What makes this particular SKT-090 model a unique performer is its highly individual and eccentric way of playing the video. The machine, 17 years old, reads scratches on the disc not like crackles on an audio record but chops a scene into fragments less than 1/4 second long and reassembles them by chance operation. The needle gets physically irritated by several factors besides the scratches that let it skip the grooves, resulting in an infinite number of similar but not identical collage variations of the same scene. The performed "cuts" are almost seamless.
Considering its historical context, there is some irony involved in this "accident" as the SKT-090 (which was built in the early '80s) reproduces without human interaction the video art collage techniques that originated in the same decade. Before digital video was available, some 5000 edits, each a couple of frames long, were done tediously on time-consuming tape-to-tape editing systems.
The unpredictable nature of the machine reproducing the stored analogue information in such an illogical order produces a rare machine autonomy that questions the way time progression is adapted to cinema. The latter usually features a successive order of events as the only factor that tries to level up with reality. Based on the given data the machine suggests an alternative reading. It could be seen as a practical approach to ciné-thinking. For Hotel New York the SKT will dissect a long distance Hollywood love drama.
The SKT-090 was found and modified by New York-based video artist Caspar Stracke.
This is a digitally manipulated image by Hildur Bjarnardottir, an artist living in Iceland. The source image is a traditional lace knit shawl. The picture is printed large on matte paper, mounted on an aluminum panel. According to Bjarnardottir, "since I am using traditional Icelandic shawls [my recent] exhibition earned me a nomination for the DV cultural award in Iceland." This kind of symmetrical, crystalline mirroring comes easily and naturally in the computer, so the success of an image often depends on how exotic the source is. In this case, I would never have guessed Icelandic textiles.