Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Egoism and LSD

(a midterm)

There are people who see the world the way they want to.

There are people who see the world the way it is.

And there's the artist.

My Brother, Hunter, aka: Atlas, is a serious artistic photographer. He has recently acquired one of these Blogs and will be posting soon if you wish to check him out.

Hunter focuses on existentialism and takes it to a completely different mental plane. He is the kind of person who has delved so far into his mind that sometimes he has trouble getting out. The result is an explosion of artistic creativity.

Lengthening Sensual Development

The above photograph with a smiling girl and paint splattered around her as if to come out of her ears is one of this artistic photographs, entitled: LSD, or Lengthening Sensual Development.

She's smiling as if she has reached a new high. The splatter paint looks as if her brains may have just exploded out her ears. But, she enjoys it.

But believe it or not, my brother's photograph makes no direct reference to Acid, except that LSD is a drug that expands your mind. This girl is on no drug other than herself. The brain has the ability to take you incredible places if you want it to do so. Some have tried to harness this ability through meditation, and those people are on the right track.

But, anyone can sit on a mat and hum for eight hours. The key to this act is sheer willpower and a resistance toward society. When your mind is grounded in the accepted reality of society, it becomes difficult to see the world from any other perspective. Once you are able to find this resistance. The result is an explosion.

An explosion that looks very similar to butterfly wings. Unique, colorful, and with the ability to fly, whereas before this metamorphosis you simply walked with everyone else.

Part of this resistance is the ability to go into the self and take apart the mind from the inside out. Organized religions, support groups, activist groups, schools, and even family can all act as a deterrent to this process. You must become the blank slate, and then create.

What you do at that point... is up to you.

Egoist, Jared Foust

Another work that comes along the same line was created by a close friend of mine, Jared Foust, aka: DaiKamanohashi, who recently discovered the difference between Egotist and Egoist.

Quoth the Oxford English Dictionary.
USAGE The words egoism and egotism are frequently confused, as though interchangeable, but there are distinctions worth noting. Both words derive from Latin : ego (‘I’), the first-person singular pronoun. Egotism, the more commonly used term, denotes an excessive sense of self-importance, too-frequent use of the word 'I,' and general arrogance and boastfulness. Egoism, a more subtle term, is perhaps best left to ethicists, for whom it denotes a view or theory of moral behavior in which self-interest is the root of moral conduct. An egoist, then, might devote considerable attention to introspection, but could be modest about it, whereas an egotist would have an exaggerated sense of the importance of his or her self-analysis, and would have to tell everyone.

He showed it to me along with the work of art he created, and I had an explosion of understanding of his piece and instantly fell in love with it. A word to describe intense introspection and self-evaluation existed. Nothing could describe the moment but the word 'cool'.

The three of us all have different paths to attaining the individuality which allows for great introspection. I've used eastern philosophies like Taoism and western religions such as Paganism, Hunter tackles Existentialism, and Jared simply embraces who he is and doesn't let a soul in the world tell him otherwise.

But even with these different paths, the goal is the same. Reach into the mind and pull out that world in which we truly belong. Art ensues as we try to invite that world into reality, and allow those in reality to gain a glimpse of who we are.

So there's the artist, who sees the world as he created it.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

A Woman's Place is the Kitchen and the Battlefield

Women's history is quite the boring subject for a number of reasons. It's only interesting if you're interested in domestic issues for the greater part of history.

Women's history had an awesome start in the Neolithic period, and in early civilization (Sumeria especially). But all that ended when people decided that Sumeria sucked and wiped them off the face of he earth. And then, with women's history being so focused on a small aspect of history, especially in the last thousand years, the rest of history became Man's history. Since that point, it's always been 'impressive' when we see a woman suddenly do something that gender roles of the time said they couldn't do. But these women are only popular for doing things that a thousand years ago would have been fine.

Women like Clara Barton and Sarah Rosetta Wakeman stand out as women of the Civil War period who did things considerably amazing for their time. But in the art of the time, there wasn't much that glorified this, even in the art by women. The 'Woman's place is the kitchen' mentality permeates through many women, even today.

It simply wasn't a woman's place to do anything other than cook or clean for her husband, make babies, teach, and walk around in a dress. While there's nothing inferior about these tasks, there's not much glorification of it. And sometimes I think that women's art in the 1800s and on is an attempt at glorifying domestic life.

But there's been a surge of artistic representations as of late of the woman-warrior, as rare as she is. Women have been popping up in video games especially as great fighters.

The Amazon of Diablo 2

In literal history, there weren't many fighting women. The pagans of Northern Europe (Gaul, Woads) had a few; there was obviously Joan of Arc; and the maiden archers of Scythia were a force to be reckoned with. But overall, the woman-warrior in classical European civilizations (Rome, Greece, Carthage, Macedonia, etc) is practically a historical fiction.

Most civilizations that employed women on the battlefield put them in positions where a small, fragile body could be utilized well. Even the Romans feared Scythian women on horseback with bows and poisonous arrows.

Scythian Noblewoman

And China has a large collection of woman-warriors. Mulan being the most obvious, but a better example would be Sun Shang Xiang, a princess of the Chinese kingdom of Wu whose handmaidens dressed in full armor. She would use hit and run tactics with cavalry to really mess with her enemies. And she was a great fighter herself, fighting in numerous battles during the Three Kingdom Period, utilizing both the sword and the bow.

But for some reason, around the medieval period, the powerful woman on the battlefield disappeared and never really came back, especially not to the scale of the Scythians who employed whole brigades of women. But in concept art and science fiction stories of ancient civilizations, we have the woman-warrior coming back.

I don't think she's in the kitchen

Scythia lives again, but only in the imagination of the concept artist. Rarely are these stories made into anything beyond the medium of graphic novels and sci-fi novels. Which are pretty fucking awesome, but aren't as mainstream as they probably should be. Maybe the woman warrior will truly return.

Holding the Treasure

Shaqerlee made a really cool response to my recent blog post, A Quest for Treasure, in which I took a quest into the internet for a lost photograph.

She brought up a good question with her title. Now that I have the treasure, what do I do with it? Honestly, I just wanted it for my collection of interesting photographs that move me. Occasionally I go into them and look for that piece of inspiration I need. As a film student, photography inspires me to expand upon the picture into a story.

The Treasure

This photograph in particular reminds me of how simple life really is. We complicate things too much sometimes. Shaqerlee even admitted that she would have separated life into seven parts rather than four. This photo separates life into childhood, love, wisdom, and death. And they are separated into Morning, noon, evening, and night.

Three of those are obvious with the exception of Wisdom being the fourth. It may not have been what the artist was intending, but I see that as what we are left with when we have nothing else. He's looking at his wife's grave which was placed on the spot he had a romantic day. A day important enough to be represented in the portion of his life symbolic of love.

The character has nothing left but his memories, and his wisdom that he has attained over the years.

It's quiet there.

And then he's gone.

Along with the tree who traveled with him.

Night falls.

But the kite stays as a tribute to his journey.

And new life begins.

Monday, April 27, 2009

A Quest for Treasure

(Found Object)

I had downloaded a photo to talk about it on here... or at least I thought I did. I ran into the issue earlier this morning when I suddenly couldn't find the damn thing. I have a handful of folders that I put insanely cool shit in, but after much deliberation and searching my computer for .jpgs, I apparently either deleted it or didn't even download it in the first place.

It was a really cool photograph. But the only thing I remembered about it was that there were some trees, a kite, people, it was set up in four photographs, and there was a life symbolism in it. I was going to write about it because it really inspired me. But the disappearance threw me into a rut. But I was determined to find it again.

Only problem. I had no clue whatsoever where I managed to find it the first time.

So anywho, I did some image searching on google for it to try and find the damn thing.

search: life kite
search: life kite tree
search: life kite four
search: life kite 4
search: lief kite four photograph


search: life kite four photograph
search: photography life kite
search: fuck it
search: I hate you google
search: ???

I gave up.

But, being the brilliant technician of the internet that I am, I went to a SUPER SECRET WEBSITE and went to the requesting image forum. I put a description of the image in there and waited while looking around for other requests that I could fulfill.

After a while, someone else posted that he was looking for the same photograph. Didn't have it, but gave me a gift. Probably something he had found while doing the same search I'd been doing.

I really liked the picture, and it indeed has it's inspirational levels. But it wasn't the photograph I was looking for. So while sifting through the millions of requests for other stuff, I couldn't find anyone looking for anything that I had, given that I don't collect the type of stuff that people there tend to be looking for.

but, alas, after a few minutes more of waiting, myself and my friend in need both got what we were searching for.


So now, in addition to having the photograph and it's original meaning, it now has an extra personal meaning because of the quest to find it.


Diamond in the Rough: Born a Slave

There's a shitload of photographs in the world. Most of them don't speak to me at all. But sometimes I see one that truly affects me.

Richard Avedon, William Casby, born a slave 1963

As a History note, the Emancipation Proclamation of Abraham Lincoln was in 1863. So this photograph might have been taken exactly 100 years after the proclamation.

Slavery has a long history in human culture. Not all of it was bad. Roman slavery, for example, was mostly for prisoners, and even then still had a way out. Roman slaves could earn their freedom, and one even managed to become Consul. American slavery, however, had just about every negative connotation you could find. There was no future for these slaves, which is what makes American slavery so horrible.

It was racially motivated, the slaves were all foreign, and there was no way out of it for about 150 years. If a slave escaped, he could not blend in with the populous as a Roman slave could have. There were no other nations for him to escape to other than Canada or possibly Mexico if he played his cards right. In Rome, a slave could escape to Gaul, or simply disappear to another part of the Empire and restart his life, but in America, every black man was a slave until some began to inherit freedom. And even then, there was still no future for them.

Sometimes life was better for a slave black than a free black. Especially a domestic slave for the right household. However, if you read Fredrick Douglas' book My Bondage and My Freedom, you see that even a domestic slave that lives mere miles from the Mason-Dixon line can have the roughest life in the world.

And then there was another 50 years of debate before war broke out over it. And after that, another hundred years of racial struggle for the rights of these ex slaves' descendants to sit in the same restaurant as the previous slave owners descendants.

To put this in context, here's what happened the same year this photo was taken.

Culmination of a Century of Freedom:
Maybe he was there

I don't know how old this guy was when the photo was taken, but it can be safe to assume that he didn't live very long as a slave. However, the hardships with slavery didn't end with the emancipation proclamation. There was still about two more years of war over the issue, and then the shit hit the fan with reconstruction (letting southern states back into the union, the formation of the KKK, voting rights taken away from southerners, uneducated blacks being voted into political positions).

I would think that a conversation with this man would be an intense experience. There's historical accounts where you get a broad view of what happened in a civilization, and then there's the personal accounts of the people in that time. These accounts include the signs of the times if you will, but this man's personal account would include each job he has worked, the women he loved, the friends he had, the times he had within this hundred year span of history.

This man saw a century of intense advancement in all aspects of society. And it can be seen in his eyes. His life is hardened. But he has lived to see this moment. The moment is over, and he is long dead now. But he made it.


Sunday, April 26, 2009

ZombieJesus, Plant Ovaries, and Apache Indians

I am a user on a Christian forum that allows for open debates between the users. I've joined to throw about my two cents, even though I am sometimes disregarded for being a non-believer (and told to GTFO). Others, however, really like that I'm present there and don't want me to leave.

So I stay.

But anywho, something I posted there could definitely double as a blog post here. This was made in response to a discussion about contradictions in the Bible.

There's a lot of people in the world that hate Christianity for beliefs such as Hell, anti-homosexuality, anti-abortion, so-on such-as. So they look all over the Bible for insane verses and philosophical contradictions. Sometimes it makes sense, sometimes it's just stupid.

The reason why I left Christianity is that the worldview of Christianity, while it makes sense in it's own little world, didn't make sense to me when I took a few steps back and looked at the broad spectrum of things.

It especially seemed ridiculous when I realized that Christianity basically worships an immortal zombie (hence the phrase ZombieJesus on the internet).

Also, I was turned off by Christianity's resistance to other schools of thought that don't come explicitly from the Bible. The Tao Te Ching is obviously a tool of Satan because it's a philosophy that comes from somewhere else. A standard that Aristotle was never held to (examine the history of Galileo Galilei).

Upon leaving, I've seen a few philosophical contradictions in the religion of Christianity mainly in how it's practiced, rather than the Bible itself. There's a few places where the Bible is nowhere near as clear as it claims to be, but even if it was, and still adhered to the philosophical worldview it always has (sacrificing literally means something to God, God is a sentient creature, Jesus' death literally saves us from Hell even though he didn't actually die... Cause he couldn't... but died for our sins... wait what?), I still wouldn't be able to follow it because it simply doesn't make sense to me. It even seems crazy sometimes.

So I am where I am. fluttering above a few philosophical ideas and but mostly settled on the issue of religion. Still changing because I am constantly exposed to new facts, but I like it that way.

Zombie Jesus!

To which a user named Hope responded:
that's what bugs me. people lump Christians into a category of all being so judgmental and hypocritical. and yes, in reality, many of us are. but then there's the ones that really get it, that understand the life Jesus intended for His followers and the law of love that was established at calvary.

and i'm pretty sure Jesus did die. . . at least in the Christian perspective He did.

i agree about Christianity seeming crazy. sometimes i wonder why i believe what i believe, and i feel like just quitting religion altogether. but the thing i love about my faith is that i'm nowhere near understanding how things work out "logically", and i don't have to be. i've experienced God in intimate ways that i can't describe to anyone. just feeling His presence in my life and His love and comfort when i need it most. it's completely and utterly beautiful.

I find that last paragraph extremely interesting. With that, I wonder where she'll be spiritually in five years.

Me again
Right. He died, was supposed to be a sacrifice to be sent to Hell to pay for the sins of mankind, but cheated his way out of Hell (cause he's God, lulz) and came back to life in the form of his physical body, making him technically a zombie.

But then I go back an examine why he had to do all this in the first place. And it goes back to eating the wrong plant ovaries (fruit). The fruit in question gave us the power to tell the difference between good and evil.

Now disregarding whether or not it's possible to gain such wisdom from eating a kind of apple, is it really such a bad thing to have this knowledge? And why did God want to hide these things from us. And furthermore, why did he decide to hide it in fruit?

And once again, I don't understand why that makes us need to go to Hell in the first place. If Adam was dumb enough to take Eve's little plant ovary, giving us knowledge between good and evil, why does that make it possible to go to Hell in the first place when clearly Eve didn't know any better before she ate the apple?

If eating the apple was a sin in the first place, then clearly we had the ability to sin pre-apple. But only the ability to go to Hell post-apple.

So pre-apple we had the thinking abilities of a Dog. Which was, of course, a good thing. But the 'fall' of man flipped things around and allowed us to have some of the knowledge of God, which God apparently wanted to keep to himself... except that he put a magic tree in the middle of a garden that was full of said knowledge.

When the roots of the religion don't make much sense, I start to think it's a little crazy.

I know the comfort that you're talking about, as I have felt it before. But that doesn't mean that it's the Christian God. It could be the Great Spirit (Apache), which seems much more likely to me. God could not be God if he didn't do things logically. And since there's a large amount of logic missing when it comes to the base of Christian beliefs (in my eyes) my potential faith in those beliefs flounder.

All true, but doesn't make much sense when you put it that way

Hope responded a last time
Jesus was never supposed to be sent to hell. feel free to give me a verse that supports your claim to the contrary. and He was fully resurrected back to life. this definately makes Him human, not zombie.

the reason it was a sin to eat of that fruit was because God had told adam and eve not to do so, therefore it was a sin of disobedience. when they were protected from the knowledge of good and evil, they didn't have any problems. the world was perfect and they were free to have fellowship with God and there was no sin to hold them back.

it wasn't that they didn't have a knowledge of God before the fall, it was that they now had a knowledge of God AND a knowledge of sin. therefore bringing forth murder and adultery and all the other horrors that would have been preventable if they hadn't partaken of the ONE fruit from which they had been forbidden.

and i don't think your "great spirit" would give me comfort when i have no belief in him. in fact i have such a strong belief that my God is the only true God in existence that any other 'god' would probably not be in the mood to comfort me in my time of need.

the reason i base my religion on faith is that i wasn't there at the creation of the world. i'm not going to demand scientific proof as to exactly how the world originated, because that would be impossible. everyone claims their belief as fact and that gets us nowhere.

Friday, April 24, 2009

The Color Red... or Yellow.

Anytime Paul Gauguin comes up, I am reminded of this little tidbit from my childhood.

Calvin and Hobbes

I read this as a kid with Calvin's perspective. Who the hell is he? I didn't know, and I didn't bother finding out.

But... Well, he liked to paint.

Paul Gauguin, Vision After The Sermon


Smooth pasty red.

A lot of what impressionism is about has to do with the way the mind perceives color. Red classically represents a number of things. It can represent love, anger, passion, life (blood), or death (blood) depending on how it's used. But, some people, like myself, identify color with numbers, letters, music, and memories.

Five is yellow to me, for example. Always has been.

Uno anyone?

And there are several orange memories in my life, as as well as many blue ones. Last summer was particularly yellow.

Probably doesn't make any sense to you. Or maybe it does. Most people I've talked to who are 'creative and gifted' know exactly what I'm talking about, even though the colors don't always match up. It makes no sense to me why anyone would think that five is anything other than yellow. Because... it's so obviously yellow.

Uno disagrees.

Fuck you Uno, five isn't red.

Now it seems that yellow is one of the colors that inspires me the most. Quite honestly it isn't. It's very out of character for me. And I honestly don't really like the color if it's overused.

Vincent van Gogh, Night Cafe

And I think the same reaction would come from someone who hates the color red. But honestly, the color red reminds me of Dynasty Warriors, Orcs, and just about every Chinese film I've ever seen (House of Flying Daggers was Green, and Hero was every color in the book. But they did those things on purpose, which impresses me.). All of which are things or concepts that I enjoy. So the color red does something for me, and I'm able to appreciate this painting beyond the subject matter simply because of the sheer amount of red that it uses.

If something is red in my mind, chances are that I'll enjoy it.

My response to the painting has almost nothing to do with the subject of the painting itself, just the fact that it spams the color red everywhere. Alternately, the Night Cafe has the opposite problem with me because it has the color yellow fucking everywhere. Even the red is yellow. There are times when the color yellow can be used tastefully, but in this case, it doesn't seem right to me.

Monday, April 20, 2009


Yes, I shall post this after bashing youtube.


Sunday, April 19, 2009

Youtube again.

So why did I bash youtube (or at least give it a hard time)?

Before I answer that, watch this.

Now if you could survive this guy's annoying voice and inflection, the message is that there's a possibility of corporations taking over youtube videos. So, all the vlogs, short films, and yes... even the youtube poop, will be destroyed by the onslaught of bullshit. Youtube is becoming just another television channel in the same way that Hulu became about a year ago.

Now the difference is that Hulu set out to do this. Youtube was just meant to be a video sharing site. Hence YOUtube. YOU made the videos (or stole them) and posted it. w00t. But now, it's going to be CORPtube. Or hulutube or whatever stupid nickname you want to give it.

I think that youtube is mostly crap, but I also don't watch TV because I think it's even crappier. Soon, youtube gems such as TheAmazingAtheist, Thunderf00t, LonelyGirl15 and other random things stuff I've subscribed to are going to be eclipsed by episodes of Family Guy.

Two years ago, youtube was better. Better free speech, clearer regulations, and less bullshit. But still overwhelming amounts of youtube poop. And it's only taken two years for even the poop to turn to shit.

Which seems to be the trend with time marching on. As years pass, we get exponentially more bullshit along with technology, comfortable living, blah blah blah.

Sure, youtube has allowed us to be able to share videos that we make with everyone in the world. But what does that give us? A bunch of people sitting on their asses watching videos on the internet. The only difference between that and TV is that there's some interactive applications, lower production values, and there's less commercials.

In the grand scheme of things, how is it good that our generation can be easily defined by this?

although... It's awesome that short films are becoming more popular as a result of youtube.

The Director of this short film.

However, it's hard to make money with them considering that youtube is mostly free (money being made off advertising). But with the oncoming of this HULUtube, the short film trend will disappear as shows such as Family Guy, Lost, and Heroes become a lot more readily available. This may also kill the DVD market for those shows, or at least damage it.

It also may be a good way to fight piracy. Make the money with the adverts rather than people actually purchasing the films for film's sake. But with this, independent filmmaking will die.

Mankind is Obsolete: Still Right Here

I've been going back to my dark period as of late. It's a little tardy, considering that I usually go into those moods during the winter, but whatever. It's fucking cold out, so I guess that makes up for it.

Anywho, discovered this band along with a couple others that are pretty fucking cool. I'll occasionally post some videos from bands I like on here to kinda mix things up.

Yeah. Pretty rockin. The video itself isn't all that awesome, but I like the music.

plus, the chick is hot.

Thursday, April 16, 2009


is what this is.


Friday, April 3, 2009

Modern Madness: Youtube Edition

When asked 'what defines today?' in class. I could really only come up with one word:


This is actually pretty sad, because the words that I would use to describe youtube would be:

Cesspool of Free Speech.

A lot of us spend a lot of time on youtube. I'm not immune to this accusation, which is part of the reason I'm so angry about it. There's a couple of users that I've addicted myself to, and I like checking up on them. The vast majority of these posts on youtube are VLOGS.

Video Logs. Also a play on the word Blog.

The vast majority of video logs feature some person just staring at the camera talking about mindless bullshit.

This was actually a webseries that I was addicted to for a very long time. About two years. Because the above video eventually turned into this.

What kinds of birds chirp at 2:40 AM? I mean really. There's a flock nesting outside my window or something.



Youtube is mostly what a certain internet community has deemed 'youtube poop'. These are crappy Vlogs, horribly edited music videos of people mouth syncing to Ashlee Simpson (or shitty anime music videos), along with the multitude of skateboarding accidents.

Despite the nickname 'youtube poop', this poop gets a lot of smells... er... views. I try to avoid it, but sometimes I like the skateboarding accidents. Those were classic before youtube even existed. (ah the days of Stupidvideos)

But, sometimes, even among the lame vloggers, you have people that are true gems of the internet.

Anywho. Beyond just the shitty or not shitty vloggers that spam youtube with their boring lives, you occasionally get some people with actual editing skills on youtube.

Youtube has built itself the reputation that if you want to find a video of it, it's on youtube. With the obvious exception of porn, which youtube doesn't like. Youtube has terms of use that you HAVE TO READ (not) before posting a video. These terms of use are very vague and sometimes used to delete seemingly random videos because they are 'not suitable for minors'.

If a video is flagged a certain number of times, you have to click a button that says you want to see a video that is not suitable for minors. Like this one.

As you can see. Youtube is a little arbitrary about this kind of thing. This video got flagged like crazy by creationist votebots that vote to take down pro-evolution or anti-creationist videos. It's an interesting mini-war that rages on youtube and is quite similar to the war between Anonymous, an internet group, and Scientology, a pseudo-religion.

The subject of youtube is far to vast to write a complete work on in a blog post. This is much like our modern society. We define ourselves by the vastness of our opinions and ideas, most of which have a representation on youtube.